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Archive for the 'Online Advertising' Category


Advice for Online Retailers in the UK

Online retailing is rapidly expanding. Major online retailers like Amazon and eBay are achieving high sales, bringing more and more retailers online. According to The Centre for Retail Research, in 2014, online retail sales in the UK increased by 15.8 percent, whereas the estimate for 2015 is a 16 percent increase. British consumers spend on average GBP59 for online shopping, mostly on tablets (82 percent).

Here is some online retail advice.

Tips for online retailers

a) The basics
An online business does not have a physical address. You should not neglect to list some basic information like your phone number and/or an email address. Customers should feel that they can contact you anytime with questions about your products or services.

Write straightforward, accurate and easy to understand product and/or service descriptions, including prices and any extra fees. Over-complicated descriptions will confuse your customers, who, most likely will prefer another online retailer.

Include nice, colorful pictures of your products so that customers can actually see what they are buying. Don’t forget that your business is not brick-and-mortar, so customers trust your product descriptions, but they also need a visual communication of what they are shopping for.

Create a user–friendly website where visitors can navigate with easiness. Check out eBay or Amazon to see what makes them so easy to function. Don’t forget that your website is, in fact, your shop window, the entrance to your business. Make it attractive, but, above all, efficient. Read more »



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Small Business Support Guide for the UK

Managing a small or medium sized enterprise (SME) in the UK can sometimes feel financially restrictive. While many may struggle to access private funds, there are government backed schemes available. Although some are available throughout the UK, others are restricted to England, Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland respectively.

Starting a new business
The government offers advice for those who are starting a new business. This includes researching the market and developing a business plan, both of which are essential when seeking funding from private or public schemes. After this, new entrepreneurs need to find partners and suppliers, then register the business, before looking for funding.

Business funding schemes available throughout the UK
There are several lending programs supported by the government throughout the UK.

Enterprise Financial Guarantee Scheme
Under the Enterprise Financial Guarantee scheme, the government backs up to 75 percent of the business’ loan, and a private lender covers the remaining 25 percent. It is available to businesses with an annual turnover under £25 million, and they can borrow between £1000 and £1 million over a 10-year period.

There are some restrictions businesses should be aware of. The coal industry is not covered, and some areas of agriculture, forestry, finance, and transport are excluded.

Enterprise capital funds
Rapidly growing SMEs can access a £1 million investment over a 10-year period, which is partially backed by the government. There are no restrictions, but most of the successful applications have been granted to high-tech businesses. This scheme transferred to the British Business Bank in 2014.

Funds for England only

Local Enterprise Partnerships

Local Enterprise Partnerships are largely available in areas where local employment is dependent on the public sector. For example, the North East. Businesses that can meet employment deficits in a local area may be able to access grants under the partnership scheme. Read more »



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How To Get Your Business Noticed Online in the UK

Establishing a strong web presence through a successful online business can be a really profitable venture. The following techniques will help you get your business noticed online and stand out from your competitors.

Choose an accurate domain name
Many businesses fail to establish a strong online presence because their owners choose irrelevant domain names. The domain name of your online business should contain your key product. For instance, if you sell glasses, you should include the keyword “glasses” in your domain name. Unless you have an already established and reputable online business, customers will find you by typing in the search engine the keyword of the product they are looking for. So, make sure to select an accurate domain name in order to target the right audience and convey the right marketing message.

Optimize your website
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a crucial success factor for your online business. By optimizing your website, your online business earns a higher ranking in the search engine results pages (SERPS). Effective optimization means that when a user enters a keyword in a search engine like Google or Yahoo, your website will appear in the first pages of results. For example, if you sell women’s clothes, use keywords such as “women’s apparel”, “women’s fashion” and so on. Generic keywords like “jeans”, “underwear”, “skirts” etc. won’t bring traffic to your online business. By making your website “search-engine friendly” you can attract prospects and turn them into regular customers. In fact, Google uses “spiders”, a software that crawls the web frequently and finds sites to index. Read more »



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How Mobile Devices are Changing E-commerce in the UK

According to the data revealed by multiple studies, the switch to mobile e-commerce is already a well-defined global trend. For example, an April 2013 survey carried out by eMarketer showed that in the United States, online shopping using mobile devices is quickly taking over the US online retail industry. According to this survey, approximately 15 per cent of all online transactions are performed using a mobile device (mainly tablet PCs). This means that mobile-based e-commerce generates more than $39 million a year, a figure that is 50 per cent higher than in 2012.

Europe is not lagging behind, as the EU has been considered the world’s largest e-commerce market for several years. In 2013, more than €363 billion were generated via online shopping in the Eurozone, and in fact, the online retail industry accounts for 2.2 per cent of the EU’s gross domestic product.

E-commerce is also booming in the Asia-Pacific region, mainly as a result of the huge growth levels of populous countries like China or India. Online retail in this part of the world is actually growing faster than in Europe, and in 2013 total sales in Asia amounted to more than €406 billion. Asian e-shoppers are also developing a strong preference for mobile devices, particularly in China, where nearly 70 per cent of shoppers use their smartphones to shop online.

Read more »



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How Mobile Devices Are Changing the Shopping Experience in the U.S.

According to the data revealed by multiple studies, the switch to mobile e-commerce is already a well-defined global trend. For example, an April 2013 survey carried out by eMarketer showed that in the United States, online shopping using mobile devices is quickly taking over the US online retail industry. According to this survey, approximately 15 per cent of all online transactions are performed using a mobile device (mainly tablet PCs). This means that mobile-based e-commerce generates more than $39 million a year, a figure that is 50 per cent higher than in 2012.

Europe is not lagging behind, as the EU has been considered the world’s largest e-commerce market for several years. In 2013, more than €363 billion were generated via online shopping in the Eurozone, and in fact, the online retail industry accounts for 2.2 per cent of the EU’s gross domestic product.

E-commerce is also booming in the Asia-Pacific region, mainly as a result of the huge growth levels of populous countries like China or India. Online retail in this part of the world is actually growing faster than in Europe, and in 2013 total sales in Asia amounted to more than €406 billion. Asian e-shoppers are also developing a strong preference for mobile devices, particularly in China, where nearly 70 per cent of shoppers use their smartphones to shop online.

Read more »



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Rules and Regulations Concerning E-Commerce in the U.S.

Before you begin selling products online, it is important that you are aware of the plethora of rules and regulations impacting e-commerce in the U.S. Laws currently govern e-commerce issues like the protection of consumers’ privacy, online advertising and marketing, copyright, contract requirements, terms and conditions and the collection of sales tax online. Violating one of the many e-commerce rules could subject your business to civil penalties or even criminal sanctions. Here is a brief overview of the e-commerce laws that you need to know in the U.S.


Consumer Privacy

Because businesses often handle sensitive consumer information to facilitate a transaction, such as credit card or social security numbers, it is vital that businesses have strong protections in place for this information. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is responsible for the enforcement of privacy matters. Businesses have a responsibility to take steps to protect this data. These steps may entail investing in software that encrypts and stores consumer data. All e-commerce business owners should ensure that a privacy policy is posted in a public area on the e-commerce website. The privacy policy should provide consumers with an overview of how their data is collected, used and viewed.

E-commerce business owners should be familiar with PCI compliance and its role in storing and processing credit card data. The Payment Card Industry (PCI) Data Security Standard (DSS) is an important standard that sets the measures that must be taken to ensure consumer financial data security.

Collection of Taxes

Online businesses are subject to tax laws. If a business maintains a physical presence in a state, then it must collect state and local sales tax from customers. Businesses that do not maintain a physical presence in a state will not have to impose a state or local sales tax on individuals. Certain states do not have a sales tax, so e-commerce business owner may want consider operating out of these states. States without a sales tax are Hawaii, Delaware, Alaska, New Hampshire, Oregon and Montana. Also, some states provide tax exemptions for certain types of items. Business owners may want to familiarize themselves with tax exemptions to see whether any apply to the products that they sell. Read more »



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Changes to how SME’s Advertise Online in the UK

Advertising is a fundamental aspect of business management, as no company would survive without some form of advertising, regardless of its size or location. The digital era we live in has brought about a number of significant changes to the world of corporate advertising, as marketers are increasingly moving away from traditional advertising methods and give preference to digital options. In this article we take a detailed look at how UK-based small and medium-sized companies advertise online and at the digital strategies that they use to sell their products and services. 

SMEs and online advertising: the latest general trends

It is evident that when it comes to online advertising, British companies have come a long way over the past few years. A 2011 study carried out by the Internet Advertising Bureau found that only three years ago, companies devoted £1 out of every £4 to their online advertising budget. Today, this figure is close to 30 per cent of the average advertising budget. The most recent data show that there are still many small and medium-sized companies that spend considerably less than 25 per cent of their marketing budget on online advertising, but far from being a negative point, this figure itself is a good indicator of how quickly digital advertising is taking over traditional advertising methods.

The unstoppable rise of mobile advertising

PricewaterhouseCoopers and the Internet Advertising Bureau have published the latest research findings on how small and medium-sized enterprises in the UK are using online advertising. The report dates from April 2014 and examines the strategies used by British companies during the previous year. One of the most significant trends evident in this report involves the unstoppable rise of mobile advertising, as expenditure in this area has grown by 50 per cent and now exceeds the £1 billion mark. The report also indicates that mobile advertising currently accounts for more than 35 per cent of all digital and social media advertising. The most remarkable growth has been experienced in the tablet-optimised advertising sub-sector, which grew by an astonishing 400 per cent during 2013. British SMEs went from spending £6.8 million in tablet advertising during 2012 to investing nearly £35 million in 2013.

Read more »



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