Monthly Archives: July 2017

Protect Your Business for Life!

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So, you’ve done it – you’ve started your very own small business! It wasn’t easy; it took a lot of time and, probably, a worrying amount of money, but here you are. The problem, of course, is that you don’t just have to protect your business during its nascent stages – you’re going to need to protect it for life.

A lot of people get into entrepreneurship while greatly underestimating the many risks that can take place in the world of business. It’s essential to understand that starting a new business requires you to put a lot of effort into protecting your many investments. A lot of people neglect to do the sort of things we’re going to list in this article. Sometimes it’s because these things aren’t usually all that cheap, especially if you add up the cost of doing all of them. Some may also assume that their business won’t be in any danger – which is a foolhardy road to take for sure!

Here are the things you need to do to make sure your business is protected.


Hire a lawyer

It is imperative that you have a good lawyer on hand at all times. It is best if you hire one before your business even comes to fruition, however, at the very least you should hire one after. A lawyer will be able to tell you the best and most legal way to approach all aspects of your business. They will also advise you on the best course of action, should you need legal representation. There are many commercial law firms that will offer you a consultation as to how you should move forward with your company.

Have a trust

A trust is a person or a group of people that can own property, business and many other assets. They can file tax returns on behalf of these possessions. It is a good legal plan to have a trust have ownership over certain aspects of your trade. It is easier to be the sole proprietor of your business, but, it also puts you at greater risk from lawsuits. A lawsuit directed at your company may result in the seizing or freezing of your personal assets if you are the only owner of your business. A trust will ensure that in the unfortunate event of you being sued, only some of your possessions will be in forfeit.


Avoid libel or slander

It is very important to be careful about what you say and do, especially in public. The age of mobile phones and the Internet means that anything you say or do can be caught on camera and go viral very quickly. You are the face of your company and if you are held in disrepute so will your company. This also means distancing yourself from any clients or contacts that may not seem completely lawful. You may not be engaging in illegal activity yourself but your name will be forever linked with criminality!

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Get insurance

It might seem like a lot of money to have to pay every month but an insurance plan will come in useful in the event of an unfortunate accident. It can be something as simple as a client having an accident in your place of work or something more serious such as being accused of making a mistake. An insurance policy such as public liability insurance coverage will ensure that you are covered in all areas of your business should any unpleasant incident occur. You also have the option of insuring your assets against any legal action that may be taken against you or anyone in your company.


Don’t do your own accounting

This is such a common error, and it’s one you need to avoid! So many people who have started up small businesses are doing their own accounting or bookkeeping. This may seem smart when things are extremely small-scale, but it’s not something that can work out in the long-term. The fact is that it’s a very time-consuming process, especially if you want to do it completely right and save as much money as possible. If you’re reluctant to hire a new full-time employee to do your accounting, then consider looking into getting the job outsourced. In general, outsourcing is something that can help protect your business because it can save you having to hire an entire team of full-time employees – something that cost a lot more than many people assume.

You can use the above information as a way to secure your business from any unfortunate events. It’s always better to be prepared to face any situation instead of being blindsided. A few, important steps and you will have peace of mind as to the state of your company.


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How to Start An Online Store For Free

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How to Start An Online Store (For Free)

Do you want to start your own online store, but haven’t got a lot of budget or time to play with? It’s true that building an ecommerce store can be a daunting prospect, particularly if you are not techy. Well, you’re by no means alone. First thing’s first – take a look at this checklist of all wannabe entrepreneurs. Whether you’re a fresh-faced budding online entrepreneur, or an established traditional retailer, this article will break the process of setting up your online store into digestible chunks. You’ll be up and running in no time at all, and you won’t have to spend a ton of money to get started either. Here’s how.

Keyword research is the first place to start

The importance of keyword research cannot be overstated —  it’s the best place to start when setting up an online business. Thorough keyword research will ensure that your store gets off to a good start and that it becomes profitable ASAP.


Keyword research will give you a real insight into the products you should stock, and the product categories that you should include to help guide users on their purchase journey. It will also offer information about the competitive landscape of your niche (and it’s all free!).

The method:

  • Think big – are there any particular industries or niches that you are interested in? Perhaps you already have experience or expertise in a particular vertical? Search for them in Google, and see what kind of products and sites come up. Don’t forget about the ‘related searches’ at the bottom of the page


  • Save all of your data in a spreadsheet. This will help you analyze it further down the line, and decide which products to stock


  • List all of the keywords that seem interesting to you. This may open your eyes to products and ideas you hadn’t even thought of before.


Google Keyword Planner, and Ubersuggest are fantastic free tools at your disposal. Give them a go yourself, and see if the results reveal any high-demand product niches that you could sell online.

Choose an irresistible product offering

Now, you’ve done your keyword research and you’ve got some data about what people are actually searching for. Next, it’s time to get down to product selection and stock management.


  • Is there a healthy demand for the product online at the moment? You may be looking at products that fly off the shelves in a physical store, but the online market can be very different


  • Are you interested in the product? Passion does go a long way. If you are passionate about your product offering, you will find work less of a chore, and be more prepared to give your online business your all. It will have a greater chance of being successful and will help you manage more of the content production and marketing yourself


  • What are the profit margins for the product? They need to be healthy, and offer you a chance to grow the business in the future. Aim for high-ticket items rather than bargain products


  • Are your products available from a dropshipping supplier? Dropshipping is the savvy way to get into ecommerce with very little investment required. You only pay out for products once a customer submits an order, so you need very little money or budget up-front. In fact, all you really need is your laptop and a little time to set it up. Check out this guide to see how you can get started — including tips on how to manage multiple suppliers and customization.


Loving your product, and knowing that there’s a great demand for it, is a recipe for success. Here are some more ecommerce tips on how to embrace online selling for the first time.

Setting up your online shop

There are so many ways to get your online store up and running once you’ve settled on your products and made a start with your brand story.


There are a couple of things that you should look out for to make sure you pick the right ecommerce option for you:


  • Confused about which ecommerce service is the best for you? There are many review websites comparing ecommerce platforms out there; third-party reviews are one of the best ways to get impartial and reliable insight into how these platforms work. You can start using most ecommerce builders for free during a trial period, so use this time wisely to see which one suits you the best. Ecommerce builders also come with a selection of free themes for you to choose from to give your store a professional edge on a budget

  • A minimal and consistent site UX (user experience), with the potential for a mobile responsive theme is really important as over 59% of online purchases were on mobile devices last year — make sure that mobile is factored into your online store design

  • If you’re looking for a free and fast way to design a logo for your ecommerce site, you should have a go on Graphic Springs, a tool that is perfect for the first-time business owner operating on a tight budget. As well as a logo, think about how your site content is going to help contribute to your overall brand story

  • You should also consider whether selling on marketplaces like Etsy and Ebay is an option for you — it can be a cheap way of bringing in extra revenue.


Are you planning on setting up an online shop anytime soon? Will you give any of these free options and trial periods a go? Tell us about your experiences and roadblocks you’ve encountered along the way!

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Patrick Foster – Ecommerce entrepreneur & coach

Patrick is an ecommerce entrepreneur turned coach. He writes for a plethora of digital publications, and loves sharing his raw, honest experiences with others looking to make it in the industry.


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What Your Brand Really Needs To Shine

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It’s no great secret that a business needs a brand in order to shine – but what does the brand need? One of the biggest mistakes that entrepreneurs make is that they fail to give a brand the proper care and attention that it so needs in order to grow and develop. If you have recently set up a business, you will probably be keen to spend many hours developing the best brand you possibly can. This is just as it should be, but you should also be aware that you need to focus on how you are going to allow that brand to work its magic. In this post, we are going to look at some of the essential things that any brand needs in order to fully develop.


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It is one of the most vital aspects of all, and yet is probably the most commonly overlooked. Why that might be is a discussion for another time, but for now it is worth remembering that any brand is always going to be in dire need of plenty of time. If you don’t allow your brand to develop over time, there is no chance that it will get anywhere soon. You need to have a little patience, and try not to worry too much if it at first seems as though not much is happening. This is really just a part of the process, just the first stage, and you need to allow yourself the freedom to wait it out and see what happens. This is usually exactly when it is hardest to just sit back and watch, but it is going to be vital if you want it to develop in the way that you hope it will. Make sure that your entire marketing team are aware of this essential part of the process – otherwise, it might not be too long before someone tries to make it into something it’s not – and that never goes well.


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You might have heard about brand placement before, but are you aware of what it really entails? As it happens, knowing how to place a brand is one of the more difficult elements of all, but it also happens to be one of the most essential. Placement simply means the way in which you place the brand in comparison to other brands in the marketplace. Getting this right means having a keen ability to spot trends, as well as the willingness to pay close attention to the marketplace for quite a long time. If you want your brand to develop fully, you need to make sure that it is going to operate within an ideal portion of the marketplace, and the only way to be sure of this is to pay close attention beforehand. Get this element of branding right, however, and you will find that it really does pay off in the long run.


These days, you really can’t expect to get very far without a decent website set up with which to promote your business and brand. No branding effort is likely to do very well if you don’t have a website for it, so you should spend some time ensuring that you set up the best possible website for your brand as early as possible. Getting this right can take some effort. One of the first things you will need to work on will be the domain and hosting package. Go to somewhere like and try to find the best deal you can, but one which is likely to serve your brand as well as possible. Essentially, you are looking for a URL and domain which is as in line with the branding as possible. If you don’t manage to make this work, it could spell disaster for the brand further on down the line, so it is worth shopping around at this point to get the best domain you possibly can. If necessary, you’ll also want to look into finding the ideal hosting service, so that you can be sure in the safety of the brand’s new online home. That website can then be used to promote the brand as much as you feel is necessary, but it works best if it is used in conjunction with the following piece of advice too.


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Social Media

Although a website will get you far, you will probably find that you need to couple it with a decent social media marketing campaign if you want to really make the most of it. Used correctly, social media is often the main difference between a brand’s success or failure, so it is worth looking into this and making sure that you focus on it as strongly as possible. You might even want to look into having an entire team dedicated to just the social media aspect of your new brand, as it can be that important and can take up that much time and effort. See for examples of this in action. In your social media interactions, be sure that they are just that – interactions, not bulletins. Make sure that you are an active participant rather than an inactive observer, otherwise you might not see the results that you are really looking for. Done right however, social media is often enough to propel your brand as far as you feel it needs to go – so this is one thing never to overlook if you can help it.


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A good brand has a theme to it, and hopefully rarely or never deviates from it. If you feel that your brand does not seem strong enough, it might be that there is not a strong enough central theme. In this case, it is often best to go back to the drawing board and try to work on developing a better and more rounded theme. Themes are best expressed through some of the more basic elements of marketing design: color, fonts, taglines, just to name a few. If you want your theme to be fully successful, make sure that you have spent plenty of time on these elements. Done right, a proper theme will mean that you have a much more successful brand.

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Are Exotic Investments a Wise Investment for You and Your Company?

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An ever-increasing number of companies are choosing to invest their profits in the stock market or other forms of speculative investment. As such, there are now entire sections of libraries dedicated to these supposed guides, which profess to offer that elusive fast and easy track straight to the peak of success as an entrepreneur. The reality, of course, is that even a particularly well written and researched book produced by an expert cannot guarantee its reader success any more than a book on the cessation of smoking is a surefire way to defeat the addiction.

That’s not to say that there isn’t useful advice and insight to be found from a variety of respectable and internationally recognized businessmen and women, however there are also a number of books whose overriding concern is for a large financial return rather than any feelings of altruism or concern for the success rate of the endeavor. The truth is that while it is certainly possible to learn and acquire business acumen, there are clear and increasingly recognized benefits to receiving a formal business qualification. There is also a prevalent belief that natural talents such as salesmanship and showmanship are equally essential.

Investing money is an art and it requires and equal blend of a grasp of business, razor sharp intuition, a measured level of ruthlessness and, especially in the early days of your company, the ability to make informed and considered choices about where to allocate your budget and how to justify your allocations to the appropriate members of your team. In short, the more cautiously you approach your initial investment opportunities and the more willing you are to learn, the more likely you are to maximize your profits.

What Are Exotic Investments?

Exotic investments, or exotic options, vary in structure from the traditionally encountered American and European options. The difference in structure is reflected in the fact that exotic options are generally much more complicated in their rules and regulations when compared to the American and European options. Exotic options are options that take a very different format than usual in terms of both structure and payout.

One of the more popular types of exotic option is the so-called ‘binary option’. Usually, investor payouts are proportional to the increase in value of the underlying asset. Should this value fall, the investor would find themselves losing money instead, which would also be proportional to the loss in value of the underlying asset. In a binary option, however, the payout is a flat sum which is paid as long as the option taker has correctly predicted the rise or fall of a stock from a baseline at a specific point in time. If you’re interested in finding out more about opportunities in exotic investments look for a service such as Stern Options.

What are the benefits?

Exotic investments differ greatly in structure and regulatory burden when compared with the so-called American or European styles. One example of this is compound options. Compound options are designed so that the owner (buyer) of the option has the right, but crucially is not obligated, to purchase another option at a precise price or by a specific date. The most common arena for compound options Is the foreign exchange and fixed income market. This is a perfect illustration of where greater freedom in structure and regulation pay off.

Barrier options are another commonly encountered form of exotic option taking, especially on the foreign exchange and equity markets. Under a barrier agreement, the price and payout structure is rather unique; the way in which the value of barrier options is pinned to their underlying assets means that the value of the option is extremely volatile, often rising and falling by considerable margins.

What Are the Alternatives?

If you are looking to increase your businesses visibility and profitability, the obvious questions are; how much money do you currently have to invest back into your company, and how can you most efficiently deploy it to maximize return? Investments and stock options are good ways to achieve this, but require a good deal of prior experience less the venture becomes more akin to gambling than a serious moneymaking exercise.

There are a number of other areas where investing your company’s surplus cash flow could prove beneficial in the short and long term. Employee training is always a good investment, but many managers are reluctant to pursue it too heavily for fear that their business will become a revolving door of young graduates looking for some free on-the-job training before settling for a career elsewhere. However, the realization of these fears, while a genuine concern, has been far less prevalent than was expected.  In fact, employee training is a fantastic way to build loyalty as well as give your company the ability the option to nurture the kind of talent that one day may change the face of an entire industry.

So Are Exotic Investments Worth it?

Whether exotic investments are the right move for your company is, of course, entirely your decision, but they are something that is definitely well worth considering, especially as a growing approach that was outside the standard business paradigm and is now slowly making its way in.

Exotic Investments are certainly not without their own set of drawbacks, though. For example, there is a perception that despite, or perhaps in spite of, the greater flexibility surrounding the rules and regulations for exotic investments, they tend to be much more risky and often much more demanding insurance wise. Another issue is that exotic investments are often considered disproportionately costly and time consuming to negotiate and implement.

There is no doubt that in some situations, these alternative option arrangements are hugely beneficial and contribute to the development of much needed public services and infrastructure in some parts of the United States. Certainly, in the future when considering how you could potentially invest some of your cash surplus, spare a thought for exotic options opportunities and seriously consider whether you could make a promising long term investment.


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Marketing Gems Your Online Business Needs To Succeed

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Marketing is all about visibility, It’s about getting your message out there. But it can take a lot of effort to get your brand in front of the right people, the people that are going to put their hands in their pockets and actually make a purchase. However, online businesses can struggle to get their name out there is a sea of similar competitors.  With that in mind, keep reading for some marketing gems to make the whole process a little easier.


Your reputation is worth more than gold

In business, you are only as good as your reputation. That is the thing that can help you stand out from the rest of your competitors. The one thing that can convince a customer to buy from you and not them. But how can you keep your reputation in tip top condition?

Well, to do this it takes a combination of marketing and PR and branding. You need to have a solid brand on which to build the rest of your reputation on. That means not only ensuring that the branding is great, but also that your customer service reflect the same values as you brand promotes.

Remember you need to have plenty of customers, willing to testify to the positive experience of both your product and the service you are offering. You can encourage this by joining feedback and review sites. Or offering this service on your own website.


A huge factor in marketing and online business is to have strong SEO. That means that when customers type in keywords linked to the field that your company deals with, your brand is on the first page.

This isn’t always to do, especially if there are a lot of companies offering similar products in the area that you are working. However, it is possible by creating relevant and SEO optimized content as much as possible. Something you can find more about at Or you can even get a professional firm to do this for you.

Keep the costs down

As online businesses usually work on a low-cost model, it’s a good idea to try and keep your marketing costs down as well. But how can you do that? Many companies choose to do at least some or all of their marketing themselves to save money.

However, marketing is a specialized field in itself, and homegrown content can sometimes be a false economy. As it less likely to get the impactful results that a professional campaign would.

So instead of going down that route why not save money in marketing by looking for professional press release companies that are offering free service such as Then you will have access to their extensive database and tools while leaving money in your marketing budget for other actions as well.

Do your research

Lastly, remember not all marketing is about the outgoing stuff that you are producing. To ensure that it is really effective your marketing campaign needs to be rooted in research. Find out how to do this at

The aim of such research is to find out what the target group of customers thinks about certain things and then apply that knowledge to how you run your campaign. For example, if they have reacted with apathy to a competitor’s new product, you may choose to launch yours in quite a different way.


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Knowledge, Mindset, Ideas: The Ladder To Entrepreneurship Success

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Don’t you wonder what can turn a simple startup into a national – or even international – success? Most entrepreneurs like to address the fact that they entered the business world at the right place and at the right time as if their success could only be a happy coincidence or a sign of good karma. Naturally, you can’t schedule success in your diary in the same way that you would with a dentist appointment. Success is probably not coming tomorrow at 9:30 AM. However, you should plan for success if you want it to happen. Yes, you’ve read correctly: Success does not appear out of nowhere; it can be planned. At least, you can make sure that you’ve got all the right tools at hand to make it possible. It naturally doesn’t mean that it will happen. Let’s be honest: There is indeed a part of luck in every success story. But luck is only a tiny portion of it. Hard work is the most common element that defines success. But it’s not any kind of hard work. It needs to be in relation to the appropriate knowledge, entrepreneur mindset and business idea.

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The Right Knowledge

Not everyone needs to go to university to succeed. But everyone needs to have a way of developing the relevant knowledge for their field of business. Whether it is by studying for a bachelor of business management degree or by taking applying for an apprentice position in a large company. Everyone learns in different ways, so you need to be aware that there is better or worse path to knowledge. What matters is that you find the right method to acquire the relevant entrepreneur knowledge. A last piece of advice, though: Entrepreneurs need to be business educated, what this means is that you need to understand how the business world works, which often combines a mixture of reading and empirical experiences.

The Right Mindset

Starting your business is not a piece of cake. It demands a strong mental and dedication. Indeed, when you launch a company you need to consider when the market is ready for your business. Remember that keeping your company out of the red is a fight for survival during the first months or years, so timing its launch can have a huge impact on it. Additionally, even though the use of digital technology means that you can work anywhere you want to, your choice of location still matters when it is related to the choice of audience and resources. For instance, the cost of living and the access to the relevant suppliers play important roles in your decision. Getting the essentials right relies entirely on your entrepreneur mindset, the ability to think in terms of profit and loss.

The Right Idea

You can’t start a business without a business idea. Thankfully you can find inspiration in a variety of factors, starting from the observation of trends and technologies. Thinking about what there is to come can help you to consider new ways of living and working. Watching what the big business players ignore can be helpful too, as there are always opportunities that are left untouched. Niches can make extremely profitable business strategies if you know how to plan.

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4 Ways to Cut Your Company’s Operational Costs

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4 Ways to Cut Your Company’s Operational Costs

Managing operational costs is a priority for successful small businesses. A CB Insights survey found that 29 percent of 101 small business startups that failed cited running out of cash as a top reason, while 18 percent cited pricing or cost issues. A U.S. Bank study found that 82 percent of all small business failures can be attributed to poor cash flow management. Keeping costs under control is key to maintaining profitability. Here are four ways to cut your costs and improve your operational efficiency.

Payroll and Benefits

Payroll and employee benefits such as insurance typically form companies’ largest operational expense. For example, in 2012, U.S. retailers on average spent 43 percent of their operational expenses on payroll and 9 percent on fringe benefits, Census Bureau data shows.

One way to trim payroll expenses is to reduce full-time staff size by using part-time workers or outsourcing functions that do not require in-house staff. For instance, accounting can be outsourced and billed on an hourly basis, significantly reducing the expenses that would be accrued from having a full-time in-house accountant. Forty-one percent of companies outsource their general accounting, a Deloitte survey found.

A second way to reduce staff size is to make better use of automation. For instance, McKenzie research found that 29 percent of customer service functions could be automated by using technology such as chatbots, translating into $23 billion in annual salaries saved by U.S. businesses.


Census Bureau data identifies leases and rental costs as the second-biggest expense for retailers, consuming 9.5 percent of operational expenses. One way companies can cut this cost is by renting an office business center or executive suite, which subleases shared space to provide smaller companies and startups with limited office space plus services such as receptionist services, conference center use and IT network use. Knoxville company Marine Accessories Corporation was able to reduce its rental costs by 50 percent by moving its operations from a traditional office into an office business center.

Another option is to rent virtual office services, which provide a physical mailing address along with services such as phone answering without use of dedicated office space. A third option is to work from home and employ remote workers who also work from home. Partneris owner Guntis Endzelis runs his small company entirely from home using the Hubstaff time tracking platform to remotely employ several permanent employees, a part-time assistant, and contractors.


The Small Business Administration recommends that companies with an annual revenue below $5 million should allocate 7 to 8 percent of their revenue to marketing. Your marketing investment has a direct impact on your sales revenue, so it’s important to make sure you’re getting a good return on your investment in order to stay profitable.

A first step toward improving your marketing efficiency is tracking which of your campaigns are generating the best return. Don’t waste money on advertising campaigns that aren’t returning your investment. Here’s a breakdown of the highest return on investment (ROI) for each marketing campaign type:

  • Email 21%

  • Telephone 19%

  • Social media 15%

  • Mobile 12%

  • Paid search 9%

  • Internet display ads 6%

If your marketing isn’t generating the return you need, considering reallocating your marketing channel mix. Triumvirate Environmental found that it was able to increase its marketing ROI to $1.2 million by switching from Google AdWords campaigns to a mix of blogging, SEO, white papers, social media, email marketing and PPC advertising.

Supplies and Inventory

Supplies and inventory can be another major expense. Choosing suppliers and supply methods carefully can help cut costs. Many suppliers today use economical methods such as 3-D printing, on-demand order fulfillment, and just-in-time shipping to keep supply and inventory costs low.

For example, Apple Rubber uses 3-D printing to produce customized rubber seals, sealing devices and o-ring seal designs for its clients. Three-dimensional printing enables Apple Rubber to keep its prototyping and production costs low, a savings passed on to clients.


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Energy Efficiency for Business

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A building with energy efficiency measures incorporated is much more effective at controlling air, moisture, and heat flow across the structure. Since most humans spend a majority of their time indoors, it becomes more important to ensure optimal temperatures, enhanced air quality, and low humidity. Moreover, energy efficiency for business means lesser energy consumption and lower operating costs. From an environment perspective, this means fewer greenhouse gases get produced.

Let’s discuss the benefits of energy efficiency in a bit more detail.

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Cost Savings

Energy expenses may seem petty. But if efficient measures are put into place, even a small business could cut out a tangible portion from its costs. Those minor changes can have a big influence on a firm’s profit margins. But monetary takeaway isn’t the only reason why you should consider getting efficient with your energy consumption.

 Environmental Issues

Climate change is real and the more we rely on non-renewable sources of energy for our routine power requirements, the more damage we are inflicting upon our environment. Thankfully, quite a lot of people are taking cognizance of this phenomena and resorting to corrective measures. Some are also associating with only those retailers who have strong environmental credentials.

Remember, enhanced energy efficiency won’t just cut down your company’s carbon footprint but it would also improve your reputation within industry circles. And this enhanced company image may lead to more customers and sales.


Controlling the air quality in the building means a positive impact on the health of the inmates. Microwaves, printers, photocopiers, and several other things that you would have possibly not imagined are capable of emitting moisture. Air laden with this moisture isn’t the healthiest thing to breathe since it’s contaminated. When you control airflow using mechanical ventilation, the stale air within gets replaced with fresh outside air every few hours. The incoming fresh air consumes less energy than inside air to heat, which means reduced energy consumption.

Longer Life

An energy-efficient building tends to live longer. It also means lower operational costs and maintenance fees. From a productivity standpoint, comfortable indoor temperatures, natural light, and increased quality of indoor air means a healthy and energetic workforce. All of these attributes also mean a building that wears down at a snail’s pace, and which manages to keeps its value in the property market.

Get a Building Designer for the Job

To create an energy-efficient building, you would need a building designer – someone who is experienced, skilled and trustworthy. To locate the right designer for your project, you must do your research. All of this research would take time. But it would be worth it at the end of it all.

The best designers are the ones who get work through customer referrals. Therefore, if you have friends or relatives who have hired a designer before, ask them for suggestions. If they cannot guide you, go online to find building designers serving your locality or region. While you’re at it, make sure you go through reviews or read what other people have to say about the designer(s) you’ve shortlisted. Remember, the designer need not be located in your city or town. You would only be restricting your options by doing this and losing out the opportunity to work with some truly skilled professionals.


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How to Make Your Employees Care about Cyber Security

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Cyber security is something that all business owners need to be concerned with today. It seems that a day doesn’t go by at the moment without news of another breach. However, while you may care about the security of your business, getting your employees to care is another matter entirely. It can be difficult, but it is something you need to achieve, especially when a large number of breaches arise due to employee error. So, how can you ensure your employees care about cyber security at your business?

Encourage sharing – Create an environment whereby employees are encouraged to raise the alarm if they receive a potential phishing email or malicious attachment. Ensure there are communication procedures in place should the worst happen.

Provide continuous training – Cyber security training should be available to all employees throughout the year, at all levels of your business. Moreover, the training provided should be specific to each worker’s job. This is something an IT consultancy firm like CyberJaz can assist with. They will be able to tailor the training to suit the individual in question. For instance, for workers involved in IT, the attacks can be a lot more complex and technical in nature, and so they need to have an in-depth understanding of the threat landscape. For end users, the consultants will provide them with knowledge regarding the likes of attacks on their email and social media.

Appoint cyber security culture advocates – It is important to have cyber security culture advocates in place in every department. This will ensure that everyone is motivated and that standards do not slip. They can monitor all employees to ensure they are using and storing data correctly and that they are changing their passwords every few months.

Create a formal plan and policy – You need to develop a formal, documented plan for cyber security training, and you need to ensure this plan is reviewed and updated on a regular basis. You should distribute an employee cyber security policy that outlines everything from safe browsing to access parameters.

Make the message stick – You need to keep preaching the gospel with regards to cyber security until it becomes second nature. Education is key, as mentioned above, but this goes way beyond a training session. Here are some tips to help you get the message across to your employees:

  • Promote the theme with follow-up campaigns every three months that stress the importance of cyber security. Send out occasional phony phishing emails to check how your team responds to them to ensure they recognize the threat.

  • Don’t waste time sending out long emails that are only going to get ignored. Keep it short, and keep it fun.

  • Start with infographics or a few videos. Your employees are much more likely to respond to this type of content.

  • Don’t opt for scare tactics. This is the worst thing you can do. If your employees make a mistake, they may be too scared to report it.

If you follow the five tips mentioned above, you can make sure that your employees work together to promote effective cyber security practices at your business.

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