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Site Design and Customer Needs
Designing an e-Commerce WebsiteWhen designing an e-commerce site, the designer needs to consider the similarities and differences between the virtual and traditional real-world customer environments, what forms of communication are uniquely available to the e-commerce customer and what communication forms cannot successfully be ported to the world of e-commerce. The first area would be that the e-commerce site designer needs to understand both the similarities and differences between the virtual and traditional real-world customer environments as well as to recognize the differences in communication types. Primarily organizations need to realize that managing communications can be more difficult for both the virtual worker and customer because these individuals are not physically present in an office location to have verbal and physical confirmation of a message or order. Some other factors include differences in time zones, local work hours and holidays, fluency with English especially technical language (and organizational acronyms), cultural norms, hierarchical protocols for message dissemination and responsiveness. Sometimes the only common ground between the virtual and real-world customers is the organizational jargon and acronyms. The second area would be to assess what new communication techniques are uniquely available in the world of e-commerce and to determine what traditional customer communications can and cannot be successfully ported to the world of e-commerce. Three communication choices that are uniquely available to organizations of all sizes in the world of e-commerce are the Internet, Intranet and Extranet. Benefits of using this technology include attracting new customers, creating new business partners, improving communication with customers, employees, shareholders, and stakeholders. Additional benefits of increasing productivity, improving the quality of service, reducing operating costs and providing information quickly and cost effectively can be derived. Internet communication choices can include: E-mail, Discussion mailing lists, Newsgroups, Instant messaging and chat, Telnet, Internet Telephony and File Transfers. Intranets are an organization’s privately-owned network and accessible by employees or authorized vendors and requires a logon and password. Employees are easily able to access important company information such as employee benefits, corporate policies, career opportunities, and training material. Extranets are a type of external internet. Access includes employees and is opened to vendors and customers. A logon and password are also required. The unmediated real-time communication types such as one-to-one conversations, speeches, presentations, and in-person meetings are forms of traditional customer communications that would not be successfully ported to the world of e-commerce. The third area would be for the site designer to demonstrate how through the use of multimedia technologies one can create an effective e-commerce site for the customer. Using these technologies, organizations can remain competitive while meeting the needs of the customer in three main areas: quality, price and service. As to meeting customer service expectations, that customer service means the same thing on the web as it does in a physical store: It encompasses all those efforts that go into making customers feel wanted, appreciated, and that they are dealing with a business that will offer them quality products at fair prices. On the Web, in the absence of actual merchandise and salespeople to answer questions, customer service must literally be built into the fabric of a business website. Edward Dean is an accomplished website developer and author. Article Source: E-commerce from the Customer’s Point of ViewThis research paper will compare and contrast the characteristics of the traditional brick and mortar (&) shopper with those of the online shopper. Additionally, research will identify the similarities and differences between the virtual and the real-world customer. Distinguish the difference between the world of e-commerce and the real world in terms of customer communications. Determine which traditional customer communications can and cannot be successfully ported to the world of e-commerce. Assess what new communications techniques are uniquely available in the world of e-commerce. And demonstrate how the use of multimedia technologies creates effective e-commerce websites. Discussion of customer communication strategies and real-world examples will be presented. Compare and Contrast Models Brick and mortar shoppers go to a specific building to purchase merchandise. The location has a physical presence which allows for customers to have face to face communication with employees. Online shoppers are able to log on and search for items and make purchases from the comfort of their own home. Online shoppers have some advantages to brick and mortar shoppers for this reason. Several factors can be used to compare and contrast differences between brick and mortar shoppers and their counterparts. Pricing will have an impact due to the when avoidable expenses such as travel. An online store has very little overhead. This allows the cost for retail display space, and storage costs to be minimized. Additionally, online shoppers can do factory direct. This further reduces the warehousing costs. This allows the online shoppers to take advantage of additional savings made possible by avoiding these additional costs. Brick and mortar stores will incur unavoidable costs. A location must be erected involving utility expenses. A brick and mortar store will need to hire employees thus wages would also be involved. Maintaining the location will bring additional costs as well. In addition, theft may also be a factor. These factorsmay make the cost on a shopper higher than an online shopper. Selection will vary online as compared to the local needs and demands of brick and mortar stores. Online stores usually specialize in a particular area. Due to this specialization it may be easier for an online shopper to find hard to find items that may or may not be available in a brick and mortar store. Online shoppers may find more items due to the international demand of different items. Both men and women can choose from online items. On the other hand, brick and mortar locations are more dependent on local demand. If the demand in Miami for coats and jackets is minimal as compared to New York, then the brick ad mortar shopper in Miami will find fewer choices at higher prices. Additionally, many items in a brick and mortar store may only be offered seasonally. This would have negative results for a shopper looking for items out of season. Convenience may also be a factor due to live interaction versus the online experience. Brick and mortar shoppers will have the ability of touch and feel. This will give the brick and mortar shopper a stronger connection with purchasing the item or not. The online shopper would not have to drive anywhere, waste gas, dress up, or look for parking. He or she may simply navigate the web site in search of the particular item they may be interested in. State taxes may even be avoided by purchasing items online versus at a brick and mortar store. Delivery charges may be avoided for brick and mortar shoppers. They may simply purchase the item and take the item directly from the store. There may be items that are too big and bulky. Delivery charges will definitely apply in these circumstances. Online shoppers will have to incur delivery charges every time. The delivery charges may be hidden within the price of the item. The online shopper may not realize he or she was charged a delivery fee. This tactic allows online shopping to feel less expensive and more practical. A warranty may be similar for both shoppers. Online shoppers and brick and mortar shoppers will tend to have the same type of warranty. The warranty will be provided by the manufacturer. Although brick and mortar stores may do the servicing themselves, usually this is handled by the manufacturer. Finally, returns may be handled more conveniently for brick and mortar shoppers. Brick and mortar shoppers will know exactly the procedure they will be involved with when they speak to someone. Although most online stores allow returns the shopper the returned item will incur shipping costs and restocking fees. Dealing with an employee face to face may be much more convenient and practical when involved in any kind of return. Customer Communication Strategies Enumerable communication strategies can be employed with e-commerce on a website. Efficient and effective uses of web tools are a key factor to enhance a customer’s visit to the website. Generally, most companies will implement strategies that are easy to use and target a larger market. But strategies for niche marketing, either under the umbrella of the parent site or as a standalone tool are avenues of commerce that must be applied as well. With the greater number of online businesses, and potential customers, companies are turning to Customer Support Chat to expedite resolution of customer issues. This program is starting to gain momentum as it allows interaction with a representative quickly and has the potential for increased sales due to immediate response. Even though chat programs are efficient many customers are unwilling to share their personal information on the internet. This issue is part of the website design process that is called the backend of the program. This is where issues of security and customer relations management are addressed prior to building an ecommerce website, capable of doing online business. Individual companies, such as PayPal have aided the small business entrepreneur by offering secure payment methods for the transfer of securities online at affordable rates. These combined with online shoppingcarts have greatly enhanced the customer buying experience. Companies use email as a standard for easy written support and service. It allows for contact in a familiar fashion with the customer and avoids the need for waiting on hold for a customer service representative. This option works very well for individuals who do not need an immediate response. It does not allow for extremely detailed or visual answers. Another strategy many companies are turning to is audio and video approaches for real-time access to information that may not be understood in a written format. This approach allows for customers to review information via streaming audio or video. This type of information sharing is one-way communication but does allow for interactive or real-time access through the addition of video conferencing. This type of strategy works very well for training and for customers who require visual or audio to help with their learning or understanding of information. For customers in need of further direction or explanation, on the company’s contact page use a form with a comments section, company physical address, and customer service phone and fax numbers. Sourcing a contact center is a necessity for many companies in order to correct issues in billing, sales, or technical support. This strategy allows the company to support their customers through personal contact and access to professionals that can solve their problem or explain their bill. This strategy will continue to exist as many individuals are unwilling to move to the next level of customer support through the use of web tools. Internal customers are also a critical part of e-commerce. Employee’s must be well trained at their jobs, and are up-to-date on company roles, policies and procedures. In order to source internal customers, the company needs to incorporate an internal site, known as an intranet. Since these internal customers are the first contact to the external customer it becomes imperative that they are trained effectively, thus giving the first internal strategy, which is the need for training tools and education documentation that is easily accessible and allows the internal customer assistance when working with an external customer. Along with any strategy are needed options for assisting employees to understand the information being disseminated through the intranet! This strategy allows for networking an organization through an internal means that is secure and accessible for the whole company. This strategy is becoming a leading trend for most companies effectively to cut cost on travel and time for employees while still enabling human interface and interaction. Overall the strategies needed for customer support are to allow for a pleasant experience for the customer, whether local or distant, internal or external. The options available over the internet and intranet are numerous and only a few are depicted here, most of the strategies needed by companies are as individual as the company itself and much thought needs to be put into which is the right solution for the company’s customer base. Conclusion This paper has in its analysis of e-commerce from the customer’s point of view compared and contrasted the characteristics of the traditional bricks and mortar (B&M) shopper with those of the online shopper. Research has identifiedthe similarities and differences between the virtual and the real-world customer, distinguishthe difference between the world of e-commerce and the real world in terms of customercommunications, determine which traditional customer communications can and cannot be successfullyported to the world of e-commerce. Additionally, new communications techniques were discussed,and examples were demonstrated on how the use of multimedia technologies creates effective ecommerce websites. Discussion of customer communication strategies and real-world examples werepresented. Analysis through research has led to the conclusion that, ecommerce from thecustomer’s point of view, can be defined as offering the customer the tools that can most efficiently bring about the result of; customer satisfaction and retention. JD Files is an accomplished website developer and author. Article Source: Skin Care Tips 101 How unfortunate it is when your best friend suddenly announces her wedding for the next day, leaving you without enough time to even get a facial done! For this very reason I present you some skin care tips that you can follow every day without any extra effort and be prepared for any event and occasion, when-so-ever it may come! To start with the basics, hygiene is of utmost importance to beauty. Taking regular baths once or twice a day with mild soaps or baby soaps, which are particularly sensitive and soothing on the skin, is a very good start. Your hairs need as much attention as the rest of you. Wash them with a gentle shampoo and keep them untangled and combed. If you are new to taking care of your hair, you will discover in just a few days how big a difference well-kept hair makes to the way you look. Taking your daily bath in lukewarm water is particularly good for the skin. Applying soap to the face should be done carefully, massaging your face in circular motions and washing the lather off thoroughly. After the bath, dry your face with a towel without rubbing the towel against the skin. To finish up your bath, apply a cleanser on the face to get rid of the dirt clogged in the pores of the skin. Many over-the-counter solutions such as benzoyl peroxide work very well for this. You may start wondering why I'm pointing fingers at your lifestyle when I'm supposed to be giving you skin care tips. Here's why - Your skin is not just a protective covering, it reflects your inner health. If you have as small a problem as acne and rashes, it indicates that some machinery of your body is working too hard or too less or without proper input. Whatever it may be, it is a sure-shot sign that your inner health is not what it should be. Changing your lifestyle does wonders to your outer beauty. The age-old adage, "Beauty is skin deep" wasn't said in vain, after all! If your diet includes a lot of what we call "junk" food, high-sugar content or fried foods, you need to know that these are your body's and skin's worst enemies. Instead of these include in your diet fresh fruits, salads and whole meal breads. Coffee and carbohydrates need to be cut down as much as possible too, and proteins need to fill in for them in your diet. Perhaps the best skin care tip I can give anyone is to drink plenty of water. Water is your skin's best friend! It flushes out toxins from your body and helps hydrate and nourish your skin. Drink as much as you want - there's no such thing as "too much water"! If you stay stressed, your skin will inevitably show that. Get rid of the stress now - join yoga classes. Sweating off the stress is also a great idea. Daily exercise does wonders to your skin. After your work-out, take a sauna or steam bath and relax that extra bit. Sweating makes the dirt clogged in your skin pores get flushed out and off. If you follow these simple skin care tips, you are sure to be ready for even the Oscar red carpet! JD Files is an accomplished website developer and author. Article Source: Ever Wonder How Many People Eat Fast Food? Did you know that in 2007 McDonald's had 390,000 employees? They also made over 22 million dollars that year. With 31,000 restaurants in 120 countries, no wonder they say, "Billions served"! Franchising is a 125 billion dollars a year industry. While requiring a lot of hard work, the payoff can be outstanding. This is because of exactly how many people eat fast food. So, how many people eat fast food? Over 50,000,000 people daily in the U.S. alone. That's a lot of burgers and fries! When you have to manage work, school,and soccer practice, fast food restaurants are more convenient than cooking at home. It's also an inexpensive way to feed the whole family. Plus, the choices are mind blowing! KENTUCKY FRIED CHICKEN - For the chicken lovers in the family MCDONALD'S, BURGER KING - For those who prefer burgers and fries LITTLE CESAR’S - For the Italian side TACO BELL - When you're feeling a little south of the border! And that's just the tip of the iceberg. There is a fast food restaurant for just about any taste, so even the pickiest eaters can find somewhere even they can enjoy a fast, convenient meal. Americans will spend over 110 billion dollars this year on fast food, that's over a quarter of Americans. Most of them have even worked in a fast food establishment at some point in their lives. Some people dispute the benefits of eating at fast food franchises, they say it is unhealthy, high calorie, and fat filled. But there are some good points to eating fast food as well. If you're looking for a healthier place to grab dinner, there are some restaurants that serve low-fat and sugar-free meals. Don't be put off by claims made by nay-sayers. You can find everything you're looking for in one easy, convenient, and inexpensive restaurant. And with so many to choose from, you're guaranteed to find what you want, close to home. A person looking to invest in a business opportunity should really consider restaurant franchising. With more and more people dining in fast food restaurants, and restaurant franchises popping up all over the world, this is an industry that shows no signs of slowing down. With food for every taste and budget the speed, convenience, and options of meal planning are as simple as a short drive to your favorite restaurant. Based on how many people eat fast food, franchising is one of the most lucrative business ventures available. Remember, franchising is the best kept secret of the 21st Century! Dry Cleaning Franchises 101 Dry Cleaning is the process of cleaning textiles and clothes without the use of water, but an organic solvent is used instead. It has become popular today especially among the yuppies who usually wear fabrics that could be damaged by water and other cleaning detergents like soap. Since its rise in the early 20th century, several laundry washers have included dry cleaning in their services. Some even went to the extent of going for dry cleaning franchises which basically focuses on that kind of cleaning alone and like its predecessors, these small businesses think of ways to increase their establishment's promotion, ranging from pickup and delivery, to staying open 24 hours a day. Most often than not, because of its cheap investment capabilities, the franchise can lead one person to start his own dry-cleaning business. It's a self-employment opportunity that can be made available to basically just anyone, given the right resources. The dry-cleaning equipment and machines can be negotiable and can be cheap because in fact, you may even own one right at your home. Think of it, it's a low-cost home business where you can start by having your friends and relatives as your first clients. Who knows, your cleaning business may grow into a franchise and make you a success story. But if you're more of the all for the convenience type, try researching for some related cleaning franchise Information through search engines such as Google. What exactly is the reason why cleaning franchises are a hit in almost any household in the States? Other than the fact that certain fabrics are not meant to be partnered with soap and detergent, they are a low-cost business that is easy to buy a franchise for. A carpet cleaning franchise has been known to be reliable when it comes to making the best profits. Carpet and upholstery cleaning have been a part of the American household as long as kitchens have been attached to your home. Your neighborhood dry cleaners can really do wonders; they're like the next best thing to your stylists. Start a cleaning or laundry franchise in your community by knowing the best in the field. It can take little to almost no investment to buy a franchise for either of these business opportunities. Easy as pie, right? Well it could be since cleaning business information can be easily obtained through a little research from websites such as cidsys.info and many others. JD Files is an accomplished website developer and author. Article Source: Franchising is the best kept secret of the 21st century. Dry Cleaner Franchises First on the list of dry cleaner franchises is US Clean. Their dry-cleaning technology is capable of: • Not leaving sticky residue. • Having a drying of around 30 to 60 minutes. • Their dry-cleaning agents are planet, pet and people safe. • Their Low-Moisture Encapsulation Technology takes soil and converts it to crystallized polymers, making removal easy using deep brush agitation. With US Clean, your franchise will be given a specified number of households based on streets, counties and zip codes. And no other franchise owner can market in your territory. They also have their own in-house marketing and advertising department in order to spread the word about your franchise to individuals and families in your territory. US Clean has their own call center as well, freeing you from answering the phone to answer questions or sell products. That is because this is very stressful and time consuming, as well as saving you the cost of another employee. With their trained professionals taking care of this, you can focus more on your business. You are also provided with schedule access at any time through the Internet. Their cleaning services consist of upholstery, carpet, leather, mattresses, oriental rugs, tile, hard wood, grout, stone and pet odor treatments. As you can see, franchisees are provided with not just a dry-cleaning service, but with multiple franchises to work with. US Clean does not charge additional franchising fees or royalty fees for this, either. The next company on our dry cleaner franchises list is 1-800-DRY-CLEAN. They provide busy customers with a pickup and delivery scheme for laundry and cleaning. Their business scheme includes either the multiple or single van opportunity as well as an expansion in van opportunities to include either store drop offs, or dry-cleaning plant drop offs. Their business models are all based upon pickup and delivery courses that feature active participation of franchise owners. The 1-800-DRYCLEAN scheme provides you with tools to: • Attract new clients using the easily remembered 1-800-DRYCLEAN number and website. High quality materials and marketing programs sell your service as well. • Provide high quality dry cleaning. They help you build a relationship with a local dry cleaner. And no one understands and is prepared for continual growth for timesaving services more than 1-800-DRYCLEAN. • Service already existing customers. Using proprietary software, you are able to efficiently manage your franchise. Effective client communication is provided by using technology tools as well. Last on our list of dry cleaner franchises is Pressed 4 Time. Simply stated, this company fancies itself as a more refined dry-cleaning delivery and pick up service than the competition. They provide office buildings, families and local businesses pickup and delivery twice a week of their shoe repair and dry-cleaning needs. Originally begun in 1987, Pressed 4 Time is a massive company with 165 franchises within Canada and the US. This company provides: • High levels of repeat business. • 5-day work week. • Low initial investment costs. • A home-based business. • Both single and multi van routes available. • Exclusive territory. • A total training programs. • Royalty plan. • Dry cleaning company relationship established. • Software for business management. • A dry-cleaning gross profit margin of 50%. JD Files is an accomplished website developer and author. Article Source: How Much Money Does a Financial Planner Make? Perhaps you have wondered how much money does a financial planner make? After all, they are surrounded by money that is what they think about day and night, trying to increase the storeof investments for their clients, and probably for themselves along the way. Like many careers, the amount of money a financial planner can make depends on several factors; education, qualifications, certifications, clientele, the stock market and other investment vehicles, experience, and desire. It is not unusual for a novice financial planner to take their BA in Finance or Accounting to a financial services company and start out at an annual salary of about $25,000. Those with a decade or more of experience can average up to about $110,000, according to US Department of Labor statistics. And then there are the few outstanding planners who make well into the seven-figure income bracket, like TVs money superstar Suze Orman in the U.S. There are several ways to become a financial planner. In most states, there is no requirement involved; you could just set up shop and wing it, but it is a bad idea, because unless you are psychically gifted, you will be unable to perform for clients without education in this field. Another entry method to this career is to join a company, perhaps a chain business, as assistant financial planner. You learn on the job, they train you and then you go take certification testing. You will do this for a couple years, or until you go back to school for an advanced degree. Your salary will range from $25,000 to $40,000 per year. At the mid-level in this career, you may earn between $47,000 and $76,000. You will do the work you envisioned at the beginning, finally. You work with clients, assisting and advising them on taxes, investments, estate planning and insurance. This is the goal of most when they think of becoming a financial planner. If you have an MBA or Masters of Finance or Accounting, you have the best opportunity to find out how much money does a financial planner make. With a decade or so of experience, you can reach the top average pay of about $110,000. You can then present seminars and handle top level clients. For certification, exams are offered by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority. Or, you can pass the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards CFP exam (Certified Financial Planner). This exam demands you have three years of qualifying experience working full time, meet ethics standards and continue your education. Beyond this you can become a Chartered Financial Consultant through the American College in Pennsylvania. A different track to financial planning success puts you in the ownership of a financial services franchise. These franchises offer complete business packages, from site selection and market analysis to ongoing support and training in-house and help with licensing and management. It is a turn-key business. Edward Dean is an accomplished website developer and author. Article Source: Women Franchise Opportunities Women in the business world today have the best opportunities to succeed at their own business. How many opportunities offer an easy, fun and profitable business which also offers the flexibility to run it from your home, on a mobile basis, or from a storefront? There are various women franchise opportunities which include: • Personnel services: This franchise offers highly skilled people to businesses running in a professional environment. • Hair-cutting salons: This franchise is changing the whole way men get haircut. • Fitness centers: Franchises which allow women to feel good and enjoy themselves while helping others feel good too. • Business service provider: Franchises which provide services to the work from home industry. • Home health care: Be the proud owner of you own home health care business. • Discounted Resort Clubs: This opportunity permits ladies who love to have fun a chance to be the proud owner of their very own luxury related business within the $5000 range. • Latest technological advances: For the woman who loves to be of assistance to others, opportunities include web designing and marketing, SEO, website hosting and much more. • Kids-related franchises: If you love kids, you could use your arts and crafts skills for this kind of franchise. • Marketing Cruise Lines: This franchise is ideal for women who love to travel. You are given your very own automated website and all the profits go into your pocket. JD Files is an accomplished website developer and author. Article Source: Home Based Franchise Opportunities: Running a home business requires tremendous dedication, time management skills and additional space in the home for an office. Many people who start home businesses fail at it because they simply don't know how to manage their time properly. Franchises have worked out time management schedules. If you know how to overcome temptations and are hell-bent on making a success of yourself, then consider home-based franchise opportunities. Edward Dean is an accomplished website developer and author. Article Source: Women Franchise Opportunities with Lower Investment: Many franchise opportunities do not require you to invest a huge amount for initiating your business. These are ideal for women with little savings or with no guarantied source of income. You will find many franchise opportunities that do not require a huge capital investment. Franchises which require Managing Staff: Perhaps you'd like to provide expert services, using the skill set of other competent professionals? Ideal examples include pet grooming, hair salons, cleaning or business services such as technology, tax preparation or finance. Make your choices according to your skill set. Franchise opportunities which require Industry Experience: Many franchises offer aim specifically at people with prior industry experience. If you are one of them and would make the business a success using your industry knowledge, make sure you apply for these offers, because they pay very well! JD Files is an accomplished website developer and author. Article Source: Towels for Car Detailing There are many different types on towels for car detailing on the market; it is best to use proper types when working on an automobile. High quality auto cleaning and detailing towels should always be used to prevent scratches and ensure a lifelong shine you can be proud of. We will discuss the different types of towels for car detailing. By using products on your own vehicle, you can determine the types of towels you might want to package and resell as a business. Proper towels play an important role in your car detailing supplies. There are two basic types of towels preferable for automobile use. Lint Free, 100% Cotton Terry Cloth: Never use any towel on a car this is not at least lint free or 100% cotton. Other types of towels may leave scratches on painted or interior surfaces. Most individuals prefer to use these types of towels for drying the exterior of their cars. Lint free towels will ensure that no specks of towel are left behind on a cleaned vehicle, and 100% cotton will provide a very absorbent and smooth cleaning towel. These towels for car detailing have been a staple for many years and will continue to be used by individuals. Micro fiber Towels: Micro fiber towels are mainly used for waxing cars and for quick touch-ups. Because of their properties, they are excellent for detailing and waxing paint surfaces. Micro fiber towels can be rubbed across the exterior and interior of a vehicle to remove dust without damaging surfaces. When lightly moistened, micro fiber towels can remove excess wax, grease, dirt, airborne contaminants and moisture from vehicles surfaces. These towels are soft to the touch and very absorbent. Extra-large micro fiber towels can be used in place of terry cloth towels for drying a vehicle. Micro fiber towels can be rung out several times to remove all excess water. Micro fiber towels are a relatively new type of towel on the market, and they are steadily becoming a staple in auto detailers garages. They should be used in both your personal garage as well as available from business' specializing in selling automotive care products. Other considerations should include the following: * Size (most car owners prefer a larger towel for drying, and smaller towels for detailing door jambs, wheels, interior parts, etc.). * Color (some owners stick with certain colors that symbolize what certain towels are used for, (ex.) red for exterior, blue for exterior, yellow for waxing). Once you have determined locations for acquiring discounted car detailing towels, have a plan on how to execute your business, and determined which types of towels you would like to sell, you will be able to get your business up and running. Once you have a reputable and profitable business, franchising opportunities may arise, leading to more profits for all your hard work. With proper pricing and providing good products, customers will continue to purchase their towels for car detailing from you. Edward Dean is an accomplished website developer and author. Article Source: Natural Skin Care Oils The science of skin care products has now evolved to "el Natural." A lot of money has been invested and spent in perfecting the science of skin care botanically. Aromatherapy and essential oils are now incorporated into our daily beauty regime. Gone are the days of heavy oil-based foundation and other oil laden skin products and this is especially good news for those of us that are prone to oily skin naturally. There are two (2) categories of "natural oils." There are essential oils, and then there are carrier or base oils. Essential oils are oils found naturally occurring in plants and it is the essential oil within the plant or flower that gives fruits, flowers and herbs their fragrance. Essential oils are obtained by distillation or expression. Essential oils are very highly concentrated, so they are used very sparingly. The carrier oils - almond, sunflower, olive, walnut etc. are used in much higher concentration in the skin care products we use, or they can be applied to freshly cleansed skin to nourish, soften and protect it. These oils are used as the base for diluting essential oils. Oils have the capacity to penetrate the cellular level of our skin and deliver vitamins, oxygen and nutrients and thus help to stimulate cell metabolism and regeneration. Many oils available have anti-bacterial properties, thus assist in reduce infections present in sensitive or damaged skin. It also makes sense that sunscreen protection is added to foundation makeup because of the damage the sun causes to unprotected skin. Moisture that is actually lost from skin through sun and wind exposure needs to be replaced quickly so the surface of the skin remains soft and smooth. A good quality natural moisturizer does two things - it protects from external skin damage whilst it gives our skin a layer, under which our skin retains its own natural moisture. With all this new knowledge now available on how to take good care of your skin, it is up to the individual to find a skin care program that is as close as possible to be the right combination for her. We have all heard of the dreaded "T" section on combination skin - greasy, oily forehead down to outside the bridge of the nose extending right down to the chin. Would you believe you can actually apply moisturizer to this part of combination skin, however, you would be mindful to look for a very light moisturizer for this particular area. Moisturizers are used as a base to which your foundation may cling to before finishing with an airbrushed powdered makeup to compliment and set the application of your foundation. Now your makeup can be finished off with a complimentary shade of airbrushed blusher, eye shadow, mascara and lipstick or lip gloss depending on the look you want. Edward Dean is an accomplished website developer and author. Article Source: Hottest Franchising Tips First off, consider your own financial situation. Are your bills all paid, do you have enough liquid assets, and are you free of debt? If the answer to the preceding questions is yes, then you are ready to proceed. Ultimately, financing a franchise boils down to cash flow; do you have enough to fund the franchising without outside help? If you're wondering how to finance a franchise, if you do not have the money upfront, know that there are a number of options available to you. Potential franchise owners wishing to work from home are in luck! While starting your own home-based franchise business does require an investment, like any other franchise, the investment is much smaller. Franchisors have realized that virtually any business can be successfully run from a home office and are offering franchisees the opportunity to own their own home-based franchise business in numerous categories. Whether you want to be involved in financial services, entertainment, pet care, commercial cleaning, children's services, or home improvement, you're sure to find a company offering a franchise opportunity. Last on our list of dry cleaner franchises is Pressed 4 Time. Simply stated, this company fancies itself as a more refined dry-cleaning delivery and pick up service than the competition. They provide office buildings, families and local businesses pickup and delivery service twice a week for shoe repair and dry-cleaning needs. Originally begun in 1987, Pressed 4 Time is a massive company with 165 franchises within Canada and the US. This company provides: • High levels of repeat business. • 5-day work week. • Low initial investment costs. • A home-based business. • Both single and multi van routes available. • Exclusive territory. • A total training programs. • Royalty plan. • Dry cleaning company relationship established. • Software for business management. • A dry-cleaning gross profit margin of 50%. The "Cleaning Authority" franchise is one of the most successful business ventures that any entrepreneur should seriously consider. The business is backed by over 30 years of solid experience in the cleaning industry. Since its inception, the popularity of the business has exploded. In 19 years, the cleaning authority has set its mark on every corner of the United States. Still, it is not just another business. It is different because each partner gets prime protected territories which ensure that the new business owners get enough opportunity to market and expand. The Best Marketing Plan! When it comes to locality, a cleaning authority business ensures that its partners get the best available choice. The marketing strategies and initial advertisement support provided by the company are second to none. The company has set up a direct mail program that allows the new business operators to get the marketing done for them. The cleaning authority markets its products in the business area by mail, to the targeted customer. The business owner focuses on serving the customers as the marketing is primarily handled by the company. The new business owners will just have to take the phone inquiries and schedule an appointment, for a cost estimate. Apart from the marketing plan, cleaning authority also helps its business in various other promotional campaigns. Your Own Manager! The cleaning authority business is at the fore-front of the technology. It has created one of its kind detail clean rotation system software that is directly handled by the management of the business and the cleaning authority, itself. The software acts as the manager and helps the new business owners by telling the cleaners what should they do in a particular situation, what are the needs of that customer and how to handle the task? The software helps save time delivers a quality customer service and is user-friendly. The training program at the cleaning authority for its business exceeds the commercial cleaning standards. The training itself is very intensive but rewarding. Business owners are guided through every step of the cleaning process. They are provided an estimate of the labor force and any costs associated with starting such a business. During the program, the new owner gets an overview of the business in their area of operations. They get practical hands-on experience from cleaning to the management of the computer systems to hiring of the staff. Edward Dean is an accomplished website developer and author. Article Source: Organization! Every business is provided a dedicated software program that not only helps them schedule appointments but also keeps track of their daily tasks and the cleaning teams. The software helps maintain a check and balance on the needs of the business. It acts as a payroll center for all the employees. Cleaners can check in and out through the integrated attendance system. It also allows them to track their cleaning teams. When the owners are away, the in-house call center provides additional help. The automated software provides multiple options for the callers and can answer most inquiries. Whatever your choice, rest assured that a cleaning authority franchise may just be the ultimate business opportunity that you always dreamed off. What set it apart from its competitors are dedicated human support and a far superior technological framework. Edward Dean is an accomplished website developer and author. Article Source: Sports Bar Business Plans Opening a business takes a lot of research and a lot of careful planning. In order to ensure that a new sports bar is going to produce profit margins there are considerations to be made. Easy to follow guidelines are available over the internet and in book stores that will aid in the creation of sports bar business plans. Below are some items that will want to be covered within any business plan to ensure that there is a detailed strategy that any owner can follow. These areas of information are important to the success of the business and the preparation for growth within the future of the sports bar. There are many plans available to help guide the structure of the company and prepare for obstacles. Below is a proven method that has led many other businesses to running successfully. Executive Summary - the executive summary will give the detailed information pertaining to the background of the sports bar and will outline the initial growth that is perceived based on the first year's numbers. This section will also include the outline, mission, objectives, and keys to success. Company Summary - this section will be used as maintenance to sports bar business plans as it will include the information pertaining to company ownership, locations, and history of the company's past performance. Market Analysis Summary - in this section, the information provided within the past performances and location summaries would be represented in pie charts and/or graphs to show growth in income and success. Strategy and Implementation Summary - as the company grows, there will be needed to plan for future events within the company. This strategy section will help to provide information on marketing and sales to include pricing, promotions, projected sales and how to overcome any milestones that may be crossed. Management Summary - within the sports bar there will be managers. Some of these will come and go and this information will need to be kept up to date. Information that needs to be included are: Organizational structure, Management team, Management team gaps, Personnel plan and Personnel. Financial Plan - the financial plan is the last section of sports bar business plans. This information is pertinent to the successful growth and development of the sports bar. Many pieces of information should be included in this section to ensure that all areas have a plan for development. Key areas to cover include: Important assumptions, Key financial indicators, Break even analysis, Projected profit and loss, Projected cash flow, Projected balance sheet and Business ratios. Though the information that is covered in a plan such as the one illustrated above can be overwhelming and time consuming, it will benefit the company and help to reduce the number of mistakes made that could prove damaging. Through proper coverage of all areas of successful sports bar business plans, growth of the business will be at a higher rate and prove more profitable. Maintaining this information will also benefit the stability of the company and allow for an easier transition into larger industry management. Edward Dean is an accomplished website developer and author. Article Source: Home Based Franchise Potential franchise owners wishing to work from home are in luck! While starting your own home-based franchise business does require an investment like any other franchise, the investment is much smaller. Franchisors have realized that virtually any business can be successfully run from a home office and are offering franchisees the opportunity to own their own home-based franchise business in numerous categories. Whether you want to be involved in financial services, entertainment, pet care, commercial cleaning, children's services, or home improvement, you're sure to find a company offering a franchise opportunity. There are drawbacks to starting your own home-based franchise business, however. You should ask yourself the following questions: 1. Do you have a home office free of distractions where you can conduct business? 2. Is it legal? Check with your state and local government to find out which licenses and permits you may need to conduct business from your home. 3. How disciplined are you? Be sure to keep a time-management schedule to keep yourself on track. With the rest of your home and family nearby, it's easy to get distracted from your work. 4. Do you have the equipment? You'll a full home office to successfully run your franchise. Be sure to have the following: computer, printer, fax capabilities, phone, desk, comfortable chair, good lighting, and some type of filing system (i.e. a file cabinet). 5. Do you have the mind set? While franchises obviously follow a set of rules and regulations, and go through the same startup, franchise owners are required to be entrepreneurial, creative and dedicated. Creativity will be important in marketing, employee relations and other such encounters. You must be dedicated to being entrepreneurial, also. Meaning, you must allow for the good and the bad - and still stick with it. A home-based franchise is no different than a brick and mortar franchise when it comes to dedication. Most franchisors will spend a good deal of time training you to be efficient in your home business' office. They will show you the ropes of setting up your workstation, making sales calls, obtaining clients, processing clients, and the general work flow of the business you have selected. Should your training not cover something, someone should be available for you to ask questions to at all times. Be sure to check on the franchisee support before investing in a company. To be a successful franchise owner, you must have the backing and support of your franchisor. When you find a franchise you are interested in, be sure to evaluate all the pluses and deltas of the business. Be sure to interview franchise owners of your niche market and see what they have to say. Most franchisees are more than happy to speak to a prospective colleague. In all, running a home-based franchise business is very similar to a standard franchise - the biggest difference is where your office is. And remember, franchising is the best kept secret of the 21st Century! Dr. Files strongly believes that our current U.S. school system is deleterious to pedagogy!