Author Archives: Lachlan Voughters

Learn How to Use and Exchange Digital Currencies

Learn How to Use and Exchange Digital Currencies

 

The most popular and well known digital currencies these days are Dash and Bitcoin. However, the focus of this text will be on Dash as it has a lot more advantages over all other digital currencies. In general, the simplest explanation is that Dash is digital money; you can trade and exchange it for products. It’s also a lot more secure and safer to use compared to other digital currencies. You may remember that Bitcoin has been really difficult to get and manage but the times they are a-changin’, so that’s no longer the case.

What makes Dash the best digital currency?

To put it simply, Dash is so popular precisely because you can spend it whenever and on whatever you want. Also, all transactions are private. In a way, Dash is the closest thing to cash even if we are talking about online spending. It’s an easy way to get what you want and need without leaving an obvious trace. In that sense, it’s very similar to cash transactions. Moreover, the payments can be confirmed instantly, which makes it almost impossible to become a victim of double-spending. Quite nifty isn’t it?

Why should you choose Dash over Bitcoin?

As mentioned in the previous paragraph, Dash is an anonymous way to perform transactions online, and unfortunately, Bitcoin protocols are everything but that. This is why Dash has gained an incredible popularity over Bitcoin. Moreover, if you have ever used Bitcoin before, you know that the whole process is fairly complex; using Dash, on the other hand, is quite simple.

Dash wallet possibilities

To make the whole thing even more personal, the process of buying Dash involves the use of a Dash wallet. There are different wallets depending on whether you’re dealing with large sums of money or just trying it out for fun. In the first case, it’s recommended that you get a hardware wallet. This is the most secure way to store your online currency over a longer time period. In case you just want to try this digital currency out, Dash mobile and desktop wallets are the best options for you. There are several wallet applications for mobile use, as well as Dash wallet software designed specifically for the computer use. Check the feedback online as well as all the available functions of each wallet option in order to choose the one that suits your needs the best.

Ways to get Dash

There are several different ways to buy Dash. Now that you have your Dash wallet, you can get your Dash through a wire transfer. If you’re looking for the best cryptocurrency exchange options, definitely check out BitPanda, BTC-e, Kraken and AnyCoin Direct. You can also purchase Dash with cash! However, there are very few ATMs that actually have this feature, so this might be a bit trickier. WallofCoins is also a place that allows users to purchase Dash directly. Finally, you can also exchange any Bitcoin that you might have for Dash. Again, there are several exchange sites to choose from. Take a look at ShapeShift, Changelly, Poloniex and Bitfinex in addition to Kraken and BTC-e for a secure Bitcoin-to-Dash exchange.

Make sure you store your Dash

So, you have your Dash wallet installed and you’ve found a way to actually buy Dash coins in a manner that suits you the best. However, there’s also one extra step you have to do. Basically, never leave your Dash coins on the exchange place you used for the purchase. Your coins are not safe there, and you may regret your negligence later on. Make sure that you move all your Dash coins to the wallet you’re using as soon as you can. Only then can you consider your digital coins safe.

To sum up, using digital currency may seem too futuristic to some people, but the future is now. Dash allows you to buy whatever product or service you want quickly and efficiently, which makes it one of the most secure and private online transfers today.

 

Woman working with laptop computer and financial documents sitting at swimming pool

10 Essential Tips and Tricks for Ecommerce Websites

The way people shop changed a lot in the last few years and that’s why each year we’re getting more and more web shops. Nowadays, you can buy practically anything online meaning there’s a lot of competition in the ecommerce business and every good tip matters for ecommerce website owners. Here are the top 10.

Have and use your USP

What sets you apart from your competitors and why would the customers choose you are two main questions to ask yourself. Once you do that, you’ll know your unique selling point (USP) and how to use it. Always keep the customer in mind – your products or services should benefit them, so that can become your most effective tool for advertising.

Provide security

Although internet shopping has been around for a while, people are still dubious about payments and they want everything clean and transparent. Trusted payment options must be on display on your website so make sure you put it alongside the banner. It’s for your customer’s peace of mind – show them they can trust you and they will be yours for good.

Don’t forget about SEO

Having the best site in the world means nothing if people can’t find it online so doing a search engine optimization should be a priority. Do a research on keywords to make sure you use the hot ones on your website, optimize your pages, and be active on social media platforms. Be aware that poorly implemented SEO can damage your business so hiring a professional to do it is a good idea.

Offer live chat

To avoid your business being declared as impersonal you must include live chat on your website as a good alternative to face-to-face contact. Keep your email and phone number on display (and reply timely) but it’s even better to establish a live chat feature and show your customers you’re always there for them. Nothing beats talking to a real person!

Ensure photo quality

Whether you’re selling products or services, making your website visually pretty is essential. No one will decide to buy a product from a blurry or badly photoshopped picture, so pay attention to quality. Your gallery should be easy to navigate while products should be visible from all sides. Zoom option is also great, so keep that in mind when posting your images.

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Leave logistics to the pros

If you’re selling products, your biggest problem will be storage, inventory, packing and shipping your goods and that’s why it’s a good idea to leave it to the experts. Ecommerce logistics experts can receive, manage and dispatch your goods so you won’t have to worry about that. It’ll improve your customers’ satisfaction as well because they’ll know their order is in good hands.

Encourage reviews

You know what they say: only those who did something wrong are afraid of the reviews. But the thing is: real people’s experiences are valuable to your business. Nothing beats a satisfied customer since people will always take other people’s words when it comes to shopping online. It’s good for the SEO as well because reviews make unique content for your website thus making the search engines happy.

Optimize search option

Practice showed that site search users are more likely to convert than the average user so optimizing this feature is a must. The search box should be easy to spot, big enough, and provide autocomplete options for maximum results. There are some other tricks that can make searching your site a better experience, so make sure you take this advice and implement what you can.

Deal with out of stock products

Anyone who has ever shopped online knows that out of stock is the worst thing you can see on the ecommerce website. Knowing how to deal with this is important because that’s the way to address the biggest issue from the customers’ point of view. If your product is no longer available, link similar items to the page or contact link to the manufacturer so your customers will know there’s hope.

Create buying guides

For each category you have on your ecommerce website, there should be a detailed guide for shopping. For example, if you’re selling clothes, offering style and trend guides to your customers is a nice idea. If you’re selling wallpapers, providing home décor ideas, tips and tricks is a must. This will enrich the shopping experience and leave your customers in delight.

Think of your website as of the heart and soul of your business and make it both pretty and functional. That’s what keeps the customers coming and, more importantly, staying loyal to your business.

 

5 Traits that Make a Digital Workplace Unique and Productive

5 Traits that Make a Digital Workplace Unique and Productive

The concept of digital workplace is not strictly tied to a physical space. More importantly, digital workplace is actually an organization strategy, which helps the employees be at the top of their game as they work. Thanks to the digital technologies used, one can break the communication barrier. Moreover, digital workplace is used to boost the motivation and productivity of the workforce. Basically, it can be very difficult to define a digital workplace. In general, it can be said that a digital workplace combines the modern technologies, tools and the whole work environment so that it can bring out the best from and provide the best to its workforce.

1. Better and faster communication

Digital workplace provides easy ways to communicate, exchange information and solve potential problems to everyone involved in a particular work project. This makes everyone’s work a lot more efficient. Colleagues in the office and at home can communicate effectively. Clients and other businesses can be reached instantly regardless of their location. Dynamic situations are encouraged and perfectly implemented into a working day without pressure or anxiety.

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2. Strong, yet open form of leadership

Thanks to the digital workplace concept, the notion of leadership is getting a bit blurred. Of course, there is a need for a leader. However, the leader is no longer the boss who sits in his own office. Again, modern day digital technologies allow for integrated leadership as well. The “boss” can easily be a part of the team since the team is encouraged to solve problems and make decisions on their own. Moreover, because of the better communication mentioned in the previous paragraph, a lot of issues can be solved before presented to the leader. In that respect, digital workforce operates coherently and dynamically by involving everyone at work equally, which creates a more relaxed and at the same time more productive work environment.

3. There’s no physical barrier

Just like the location is not a problem when it comes to effective communication at a digital workplace, location is not a problem when it comes to work itself. Virtual project platforms, cloud storage and other digital tools make it possible for workers to do their job from any location they want. This is extremely beneficial for companies and employees alike. Companies can hire the best candidates without worrying about their geographical location while employees are not limited to their local job opportunities. Working from home is a great perk for many people, but coworking spaces are becoming increasingly popular as well. For example, a Shared Office Space in Melbourne offers 24/7 membership precisely because of the rising popularity of this particular aspect of a digital workplace.

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4. Time-efficient and data-driven

If a digital workplace is completely implemented into the work environment, the need for physical storage will cease to exist. Because of the possibility to quickly store all the important data and information on a cloud, it will be possible to save a lot of space in the physical office. Moreover, any new information will be processed and saved with ease. Because of that, there’s a lot less chance for error as well as less need for time-consuming data organization and filing system.

5. Track your business success

Since digital workplace encourages more independence in problem-solving and decision-making ordeals as well as clearer and more measurable business values together with a better insight into the products and services of the company, digital workplace also allows any business model to be easily tracked and measured. This leaves a lot of room for immediate changes and adjustments where necessary, which saves time, money and resources.

Digital workplace is necessary in this day and age. Technology cannot be observed separately from a workplace or an employee anymore. By combining these elements together and making them work as a whole, the workforce’s creativity, productivity and empowerment will lead the business to success.

Building a Construction Company – Startup Checklist

Building a Construction Company – Startup Checklist

Starting a company is never an easy task. Apart from needing the courage to take the plunge, you also have to be sure that what you want to offer will be interesting to customers and that you won’t make any mistake that might prove too costly.

Needless to say, the whole process is quite overwhelming, especially if you’re planning to make a breakthrough in the field of construction industry.

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Unlike many other startups, a new construction company can’t start with a makeshift office above your garage and an old laptop, which is just one of the problems every aspiring entrepreneur has to take into account.

In order to ensure that no major issues have been overlooked, many experts have been compiling various checklists for up-and-coming colleagues. The fact that most of the tips are generally accepted among seasoned professionals means that a young entrepreneur should most definitely pay attention to them.

So, let’s take a look at some of the things that are most commonly found on such checklists.

  1. Make sure you have sufficient funds. You can’t start a company, particularly a construction one if you don’t have enough financial resources. Whether you use your own money or borrow it, not being able to pay for everything you need from the very start would definitely jeopardize the whole project.
  2. Get all the papers you need. Apart from registration documents, you are bound to need various licenses to do business. Requirements differ, depending on where you live, but you should definitely have all of them ready on day 1. If in doubt, consult a legal expert about what you actually need and how to obtain it.
  3. Sort out financial and insurance matters. Choose a bank to open an account with and have a look at what various insurance companies Again, it might be useful to consult an expert if you’re not quite sure what the best option for you is.
  4. Create a team. This doesn’t refer only to experts in construction business, to also to your account, lawyer, banker, insurance agent and all other people who contribute to the daily operations of your company.
  5. Create a website. It’s vital that you have a professionally designed website where you can present your offer and later showcase your results. Having a good website is the best possible catalogue of your achievements you can have.
  6. Buying vs hiring. Make sure you know exactly what equipment you need to buy and what you can hire and try to find the most cost-efficient way of working. While you might need to invest in buying your own crane, for instance, you might be better off renting a scissor lift.
  7. Design business stationery. You really need to give your new company a professional look from the very beginning, which is why you need smartly designed letterhead, business cards and other stationery.
  8. Social media presence. A great deal of interaction in today’s world is happening on social media platforms, which is a good enough reason for your startup to be present there as well. Respect the norms and standards of social networks and you might create an extremely powerful marketing tool.
  9. Double-check your business plan, with a particular focus on its financial component. In case you’ve made a single mistake, you might not be able to get a realistic picture of your performance. Again, if you feel insecure for any reason, asks someone with experience to go through the plan with you and revise it.

As you can see, this checklist contains the most commonly mentioned advice related to starting a construction business. Needless to say, there are many more things one should take into account before starting a construction company, and many of them are very specific and depend on the circumstances. Still, if you follow this simple checklist, the chances of missing something really important are minimized.

3 Tips for Maximizing Your Warehouse Business in 2017

3 Tips for Maximizing Your Warehouse Business in 2017

Getting into the warehouse business isn’t something lots of kids dream of nowadays. They all want to be entertainers, IT experts, astronauts and firefighters, and that’s quite all right, but the truth is that the world doesn’t need that many singers and dancers. What it does, however, need are trustworthy and responsible managers in all sorts of fields and one of the most sought-for career these days is in the warehouse management industry. If you’re an owner of an empty warehouse ready to be moved in with thousands of boxes placed neatly on shelves or looking for a new spacious warehouse that will accommodate all needs of your company, there are a few things you need to know. So, here are three important tips for maximizing your warehouse business this year and making some money in the process.

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Organize, organize, organize

This might not seem like the most important thing in the world with a number of other industries, but it’s definitely paramount when it comes to warehouse management. Organization is at the core of this business and you mustn’t get into it unless you can handle organizing items in a strict order and in accordance with several rules.

Finally, if your warehouse isn’t neatly organized, your incoming packages won’t be placed in the right spot, while the outgoing ones won’t leave the premise nor arrive at their destination in time. Your employees will be confused and disoriented and, in short, the entire business will go down in flames quite quickly. There are lots of ways to organize your warehouse, but the most important thing to do is to keep the popular products near the entrance – if they’re moving fast, they need to be able to get in and out in the smallest amount of time.

Make a system

Even before organizing and setting up your warehouse, it’s important to come up with a system of placing, stacking and storing your items. No matter how spacious your warehouse is, you have to make sure the products can be easily accessed and moved around. This way, you’ll minimize the waiting period and become much more efficient, which will, consequently, bring you more and more work and boost your income. You can even use a warehouse management system software and maximize your productivity without having to come up with any special system on your own.

Applying a certain logic to the entire system is essential – depending on whether you generally deal with a smaller number of large products or vice versa, you can either focus on the number of products you get in and out or their size. In other words, your warehouse has to be able to accommodate a bigger number in small packages in the same amount of time as the smaller number of huge packages. And that’s exactly how you should store them – big products in the back, smaller ones in the front. This way, your pickers will always know where everything is and how to find a certain order in no time.

Use proper shelves

The main problem with warehouses today is that their owners are generally looking for a way to make some money quickly and rarely pay enough attention to the quality of the services they offer. And this is where they make a crucial mistake – yes, they’ll probably be able to make a few bucks in the first few months, but potential clients will soon find out how inefficient they are and simply find a better alternative. That’s why you shouldn’t cut corners, especially when it comes to shelves.

Being able to stock a large number of products at the same time is impossible unless you have proper shelves. They are literally the backbone of your warehouse and something that will make or break you in the long run. That’s why you need to look into reliable shelving solutions and opt for those that can guarantee longevity and quality. Keep in mind that poor shelves are bad for your business and stay far away from them.

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Other tips

Some of the other warehouse management trends you should look into are exploring various cluster-picking strategies, working during the holidays, delivering packages via drones and opting for all-purpose facilities that can be coordinated easily.

Cash-Flow

Why Does Cash Flow Have Priority over Profit?

Perhaps one of the most frequently asked questions in the world of business is: should I focus on profit, or make cash flow my priority? Although they both play critical roles in your business success, there are some points to be made in cash flow’s favor. So, don’t fall into the trap of putting all your efforts into making profit, since it is not the main indicator of a successful business. There is no denying it is crucial when observing the bigger picture and long term benefits, but while trying to stay afloat in a sea of corporate sharks, you need stable cash flow to maintain financial health.

The difference between profit and cash flow

These two different financial parameters have a certain impact on your business. Cash flow is the money that goes in and out of the company from various investing activities. You need it to meet your current needs and obligations. On the other hand, profit is the money that remains from sales revenue after all the business’s expenses are subtracted.

To put it in more specific words, if a contract is worth $60,000, and it costs your company $40,000 to provide a good service, your profit will be $20,000.

We can use the same example for cash flow. If your client decides to pay you in two stages of $30,000 each, you will send the first invoice and expect your first payment in about 30 days. A month later, you will send the second invoice and like the previous, expect it 30 days after. Assuming you receive the money on the exact due date you will have the cash inflow you need to keep your business running.

The importance of cash flow

Have you ever heard of the expression “cash is king”? Well, there is some good reasoning behind it. Without cash, how could you be able to pay staff and buy the necessary equipment and material for your job? Besides, every business reaches a moment when sales are in a slump, and there is no profit in sight. In that case, you need the cash flow to keep you afloat.

When cash flow is slow

It’s never a good thing when there is not enough profit, but when there is not enough cash flow, that could question the existence of the entire company. After all, employees will not be willing to work for free and your company will not be able to provide services that require previous investments in material and equipment. The cash flow squeeze can happen for various reasons:

  • Slow-paying customers
  • Seasonal fluctuations
  • Need for quick capital in order to pay contractors, suppliers and service providers
  • You need the capital for business growth

If one of these situations occurs to you, you can always check out some invoice finance options that can fund your cash flow whenever you need it. This way you can shorten the period of waiting for invoices to be paid, because the company you choose will advance you the cash.

Business boom – cash flow dependence

In 2014 Inc. magazine published an article about three business owners who were faced with the problem of cash flow squeeze that happened during the period when their businesses were booming. On the surface, fast growth seems as a good thing. However, when a small business grows from hundreds to thousands of transactions per month, it makes the managing team lose their grip on finances. The thing is, when businesses grow, they become more complex, and some rules about billing and invoices become different. Meanwhile, more cash is needed to cover higher taxes, inventory, compliance expenses and debt. So, yes, ironically, as your sales go up, your cash can go down, and this can get you into serious trouble. In order to make it through the business growth, you will need a stable cash flow. The easiest ways to do that is through a proper accounting system and invoice financing.

Both profit and cash flow are important financial parameters, but if we would have to give an advantage to one of them that would definitely be cash flow, because without it, your business would be doomed.

How to Become a Workplace Health and Safety Officer

The progress that has been evident in almost every field has also brought about significant changes to the way we work, including the requirements related to health and safety. It’s often no longer enough to receive traditional education and training, since the types of emergencies have also changed and now require different approaches.

Work health and safety is one of the crucial aspects of daily operations of every company. It’s a well-known fact that illnesses and accidents can affect much more than just production processes.

Unfortunately, they sometimes lead to serious injuries or even death. That’s why it’s important for health and safety experts to receive relevant and applicable knowledge. So, let’s look at what it takes to become a workplace health and safety officer.

Step 1

The first step you need to take if you want to become an expert in this field is to attend a work and safety course and get a valid certificate after completing it. If you’re living Down Under, your most natural choices are Certificate IV in Work Health and Safety and Diploma of Work Health and Safety.

Consider these as stepping stones towards the ultimate goal. Such a course will teach you to identify risks and hazards in the workplace, react appropriately to accidents, operate different types of emergency warning systems, check compliance with work health and safety legislation and you’ll also learn quite a lot of theory.

However, if you want to progress and get promoted, or simply become more competitive on the job market, you’ll need to get Diploma WHS, since it will provide you with additional set of skills. This way you would be able to investigate risks and hazards, manage workplace health and safety consultation process, draft elaborate safety reports and use risk management tools.

Licenses for specific high-risk jobs

If your interest lies in working with specific, high-risk equipment or in more dangerous environments, you’ll need to meet some special requirements. They depend on the area in which you’re looking for work, which means you need to ask around and get relevant and correct information before taking any steps.

Furthermore, those among you whose ambition is to become trainers need to be ready to add to their existing qualifications, although the most useful thing to do for them is collect as much relevant experience as possible. This is not only a requirement for becoming a trainer, but also an invaluable component of every professional knowledge.

Choosing the way of studying

Like most other courses, those in workplace health and safety can be taken either online or face-to-face. Either way, they usually last not more than one year, which allows all candidates to take the plunge rather quickly and learn the ropes.

It is important to compare available courses and what they offer, as well as to look for testimonials from people who have already finished some courses. Make sure you choose the best option available since you need to invest both your money and effort into completing a course.

Conclusion

With the development of various fields of work, the job requirements for health and safety officers have also changed and become stricter. The desired knowledge and skills are also becoming more specific, which means that traditional qualifications may not be sufficient or that other people will have an advantage over you when applying for a job in this field.

Apart from completing appropriate courses and getting valid certificates, you should try to get as much varied experience as possible, since that will be both useful for any future job and necessary if you decide to pursue a more esteemed career. It’s up to you to choose the institution that can provide appropriate training and try to get a job as soon as possible.

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Wow Clients with an Amazing Corporate Event

Planning a corporate event can be a time consuming and stressful task. Figuring out a budget, location, guest list and guest speakers can feel a little overwhelming and intimidating. Get a few ideas of corporate events that have worked for other companies.

1. Special Guest Speaker

Depending on what type of company you are involved with, you might want to hire or ask a special guest to speak to a room of clients. To draw interest your guest should be someone of interest—or at least someone you can create some mystery around. If you work in technology security, hire a hacker to speak to your clients about the types of threats that their businesses might face. Find a guest speaker who is able to convey a message about your company while entertaining the crowd at the same time.

2. Corporate Retreat

People love getting out of town and any excuse to get away from the confines of the city will help draw a crowd to your corporate event. Choose an overnight retreat that complies with your company’s brand and your mission. If you are a local wholesaler of foods designed for spas, choose a spa that will let you display your products on the shelves. Or, ask the spa to serve your food at mealtimes. You’ll probably need to provide free food, but you might get a discount on the retreat if the spa doesn’t need to provide food.

3. Host a Fundraiser

Show your customers you have a heart of gold by hosting a fundraiser. Find a cause that is important to you or your company. Perhaps one of your employees has discovered she has Multiple Sclerosis? Host an event to raise awareness (and money) for the cause. Display your products at the event and tell guests that a percentage of the proceeds will be donated to your cause. You can even go so far as to tell guests that for a select amount of dates, a percentage of the proceeds of your product will be donated to your cause. Customers will feel even better about your product—and they’ll feel swanky after they’re invited to a benefit.

4. Get Outdoors

Not every corporate event needs to be an expensive endeavor. You can wow your clients by simply getting them in a new environment. Host a camping event or a day hike if you want to save money on your retreat. Or, give them a day of zip lining, snorkeling, ATV riding or Frisbee golfing. Getting people out of the boardroom or office and into the wilderness opens up their minds and allows them to drop their defenses. They will be much more open to hiring your company or buying your product.

5. Online Classes and Webinars

You don’t need to be in person to impress your colleagues and clients. If you have funds to host a guest speaker or a guest teacher, host an online class or webinar. Your clients and employees will learn about an overarching task (how can big data help your company) while promoting your product (use our data graphs to help understand big data output). Obviously, the more relevant the class and the more well-known the teacher, the bigger your turnout will be. Offer a class for free that is usually extremely pricey or difficult to take—as long as your clients download a free trial of your product.

6. Rent a Function Room

If all else fails, throw a party. People love parties and they love getting invitations to elite invite-only parties. Try drawing customers in by offering a “play hooky” party and choose the location wisely .Rent a function room at a local center and throw a party at two or three in the afternoon where you ask your clients to ditch work for a few hours. Offer “play hooky” cocktails, wine and beer—and plenty of bar food to soak up the alcohol.

In renting a function room, you can have the entire event catered or you can provide the food yourself. The center can set up the room anyway you’d like, whether it’s a dining room, theater or cabaret-style set up, you can choose the format that works best for your theme.

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Traditional Business Promotion – Does it Still Work?

What is the best way for a business to promote itself and its goods and services in the 21st century?

Many entrepreneurs would be quick to point out that online advertising, a content-rich website and an electronic newsletter are the answers. Those things are a valuable part of any company’s public relations arsenal. However, it’s shortsighted to overlook the importance of promotional gifts as a means of reminding customers of the existence of your company and what it does.

The concept of promotional gifts is nothing new. Companies have been sponsoring giveaways or offering free items for decades to generate word of mouth. It is a time-tested technique for prompting existing customers to call again and for enticing new clients. Even in this age of digital, online everything, a concrete, tangible reminder of your company can go a long way toward ensuring success.

Promotional gifts work because everyone loves getting something for free. Whether it’s a pen, a bag, a t-shirt or something else, most people can’t resist the allure of receiving something for nothing. It’s all the better if it’s a useful item that the potential customer reaches for on a daily or weekly basis. When they do, they are going to see your company’s logo. Then, they are going to associate the good feelings that come with getting a gift with your organisation. Before too long, they’ll probably be calling to bring new business your way. That’s the kind of association that any growing company needs.

So what makes a great promotional gift? The reality is that such presents could be just about anything. Classic items include pens and stationery. Companies have also been known to give away umbrellas, piggy banks, ball caps, drinking glasses, calendars and tote bags. Regardless of what the item is, it is imperative that your company’s name, logo and contact information are prominently placed. A promotional gift that has just one of these elements is not going to hit the mark. After all, what’s the use of a drinking glass that features your company’s logo but doesn’t also provide a phone number or email address? Your potential customer will be forced to find other methods to get your contact info, and he may find it’s easier just to call your competitor because that’s who he used last time.

Most promotional gifts are small and easily portable. This makes it possible to bring them to conventions and trade shows where you can generate a lot of buzz just by handing them out to people who stop by your company’s booth. Other convention attendees are bound to spot the great gifts that other people are carrying around and want to know where they came from. That brings even more people to your booth. Before you know it, you’ve made dozens of new contacts. Not all of them are going to generate a sale, but a solid number of them will, and many of those may turn into long-lasting relationships.

In fact, promotional gifts are a wonderful way to build relationships that continue for years. When your company is courting a big new client, it may make sense to send them a thoughtful gift. If you’re in the food industry, perhaps you’ll send a gorgeous wooden cutting board that is embossed with your company’s information while a vintner might send a waiter’s key corkscrew. These next-level promotional gifts will help foster a positive feeling between your customer and your company.

If you want to make a real connection with potential clients and cement relationships with existing customers, then promotional gifts are definitely the way to go.