Stocks, forex and crypto are some of the most effective ways to grow your money. But just which of these investments is right for you? This post explores the pros and cons of each - and what you need to get involved.
Investing in stocks involves buying shares of companies, waiting for them to increase in value and then selling them. You can make a lot of money by investing in the right companies. You can also lose a lot of money if you invest in the wrong companies.
You can reduce risk by diversifying your portfolio. This involves investing in a range of stocks in a range of industries. The most stable stocks to invest in tend to be long-established companies - these stocks tend to gradually increase in value over the years. Newer companies tend to be riskier, however they can offer some of the highest and fastest returns.
Anyone can invest in the stock market with as little as $1. There are free trading apps that allow you to buy parts of shares on your phone.
Alternatively, you can hire a stockbroker to invest your stocks for you. This involves paying fees, however you could reduce the risk of loss by having an expert invest your cash for you.
It’s worth researching into companies before investing in them. By understanding the industry and the company, you can make good predictions as to whether a stock will rise or fall.
Forex involves trading foreign currencies. By buying a currency that is rising in value and then converting it back, you can make a profit. Buy the wrong currency and you could lose money.
As with stocks, you should always diversify your portfolio by buying a range of different currencies. Some currencies are likely to be more stable than others - the more stable ones are less risky but will offer slower and smaller returns.
To invest in foreign currencies you need to use a forex broker. To create an account, you’ll generally need to place down a minimum deposit of $100, although there are some brokers that allow you to invest with less. Fees are charged on every transaction.
Currency prices can be affected by political events, travel popularity and rate of trade. By educating yourself in these matters, you can more accurately predict when a currency may rise or fall in value.
Cryptocurrencies are digital currencies. They include the likes of Bitcoin, Ethereum and Litecoin. The principle is similar to buying a foreign currency - you buy a currency, wait for it to rise in value and sell it. Cryptocurrency however can be more volatile. This can result in much bigger potential returns, but also much bigger potential losses.
As with forex and stocks, you should buy a range of cryptocurrencies to spread the risk. Certain cryptocurrencies are likely to increase at a much greater rate than others.
You can look into buying ETH with Swyftx or another cryptocurrency exchange platform. Minimum deposits and fees can vary depending on the platform you use. When buying large amounts of crypto, it can often be worth using a digital wallet to keep your currency secure.
Cryptocurrencies rise and fall in value based on demand. These rises and falls can be a lot harder to predict than with stocks or crypto however there are still ways of educating yourself and spotting trends. For a great introduction into how to buy bitcoin, SoFi Invest has some learning resources and is the ideal place to begin your Crypto journey.
A lot of people dream about the concept of being able to go self-employed. After all, it means that they have the freedom as well as the autonomy to be able to work on their very own terms. The growth of the sector alone has been very well publicised over the years and this means that there has bever been a better time for you to take the plunge. If you want to make sure that going self-employed is the right decision for you then you can find out whatever you need to know, right here.
You Know your Product or Service
If you want to go self-employed then you don’t need to have a final or even a polished proposition. You do however need to make sure that you know your product or your service. If you don’t then you may find that you struggle to know whether or not your idea is feasible. You also need to make sure that your product solves a definite pain point, so that you are aware of how best to address your customers.
You’re Ready and Willing
Even though you may be an expert in your field, that doesn’t mean that you can easily deal with all of the other aspects that are involved with running a business. If you want to come out a success then you need to make sure that you are able to deal with your sales, marketing accounts, technology and even legal team. The main problem with being self-employed is that you might not be an expert at everything and you probably can’t afford to outsource either. This is normal, but it does mean that you need to get your head around the basics if possible. If you want to get the best result out of your self-employed experience then eventually it may help you to look into remote onboarding at a later date.
You Want Control
If you are at a point where you feel like your ideas are just not getting the appreciation that they should, then this may indicate that now is the time for you to go self-employed. It may be that you no longer want to be told what to do, or that you just want to be more rewarded for the work that you are putting in. Either way, going self-employed gives you the chance to call all of the shots you need.
You’re Ready to Talk about Money
You have to be comfortable with money if you want to be self-employed. Undercharging is a huge issue for freelancers so you need to make sure that you pitch your services and your products at the right time. Some signs that you need to think about your charges include if your tasks are taking longer than they should be to get done, or if you find that you are continually trying to undercut your competition. It will take some trial and error, but if you take your time then you should be able to set the right prices.
The fact is that when you first started your business, you most probably didn’t think that you would ever end up in a position where you had a team of employees to manage. You most probably hoped that this would be the case but you may not have thought that it would be the case, after all getting your business to a place where you need and can afford a team of employees is an amazing place to be at and not many business owners manage to get to this point.
Now that you’re in a place where you need to take on a team, you are most probably feeling somewhat stressed out and overwhelmed. After all, there’s a lot to think about and consider when it comes to taking on new team members. It’s not just a case of identifying the fact that you need some support, there’s a lot more to choose to employ people than meets the eye; there’s a lot that you need to think about and consider.
It’s incredibly exciting to be at the stage that you are at now, but the fact is it can also be extremely daunting as there’s just so much that you need to think about and consider; it’s not just a case of taking on team members, you need to think about all of the ins and outs of running a team.
Bearing all of that in mind, there’s a lot to think about and consider. The good news is that it doesn’t have to be an overly stressful experience, it’s just a case of knowing how to go about managing things, that’s all. To help to make the process of taking on your first employees a little easier to manage, below are a few tips and suggestions to have a read and take note of.
Have a set screening process in place
First things first, let’s talk about employee screening. How do you ensure that when it comes to selecting a new employee that you’re choosing someone who is a good fit for the role and your business? The truth is that you can never be 100% sure but there are steps that you can take to make the process easier, such as utilising HR support to help ensure that every avenue is looked into. You can also ensure that you ask for references and follow up on those references, to ensure that what a potential employee is telling you is the truth. It’s also worth nailing the interview process by creating a list of questions that not only look at the candidate's potential fit for the role but also for your company ethos and work setup.
A tricky aspect of managing a team of employees can be payroll; whether you are taking on two employees or 20, you need to master payroll. Payroll is not always something that it’s easy to do or manage, especially when finances aren’t your strong suit. The good news is that there are plenty of resources that you can utilise to make managing payroll a little easier, such as using payroll services, for instance.
Learn to be a leader
As an employer, you need to find the perfect balance between being a boss and being a friend to your team members. You naturally want to have fun with your team but you also need to ensure that you remain the authority, and that your team members look up to you and respect your choices. It’s also important that you act like a leader, rather than a traditional boss. What does this mean? Well, a traditional boss tells their team members what to do, whereas a leader is part of the workload and leads their team in every task. This is a fantastic quality to have, and something that will help you to be an amazing employer.
Create the ideal working environment
If you want your team members to be happy working for you, it’s essential that you create the ideal working environment for them to work in. The right work environment can impact how productive a team is, and so it’s important that you think carefully about the kind of space you create for your team. Not sure how to create the perfect workspace? Get inspired - look online, talk to other business owners, speak to your employees.
There you have it, everything that you need to know about taking on your first team members and succeeding as an employer.
If you’ve integrated remote working options that have been used since March or April of 2020, it’s amazing to think we may have been using those systems for almost a year now.
Of course, in some respects this might become the norm for your business from here on out, ensuring that you always have a possible approach to keeping flexible and always online if necessary.
That said, some form of normality will return in the future, and that can mean in the long run, we are given the chance to consider what needs improving in our office, what workflow we should curate to make this daily process easier to handle, and what lessons we have learned.
It would take many deep investigations and reports to figure out just what changes have been made and what effects have been felt thanks to this change in our working capacity, so we’re going to stick with the most pertinent advice, and show how it’s useful in order to inspire you to action:
Integrating Communication Platforms
It’s overwhelmingly likely that your business has been using a range of programs that are external to your business, in order to make sure your staff can communicate with one another. It could be that fully integrating better and more prominent services based on what you have used and what you haven’t could be important.
For instance, it may be that upgrading to a VPN with unlimited plans and the means to log in securely with a security key can offset those that require you to keep updating staff with numbered logins that they forget and keep having to respect. Integrating a VOIP phone system can work wonders when returning to the office. In this context, we become better at helping our team collaborate with one another.
The Format Of Your Office
Now could be a great time to sell your office furniture and pick up newer, more health-conscious ergonomic models. Why is this? Well, many businesses are downsizing at the moment, or shutting up shop. That’s a very sad state of affairs, but it also points to the fact that we can make use of many of these sales, even if it’s just in the form of a large meeting desk, by scouring these sales and helping those businesses liquidate their stock. IT equipment, office furnishings, it can all make a difference when upgrading your utility and helping the office space seem new upon a return.
Dedication To Your Values
Remember that now is the time for visionary leaders to collaborate with their team, but also to inspire them. In this mindset, it can be important to remind your staff of your values and just what company history they are contributing to. Setting up training that helps you understand these measures once more can help you refocus and reorient your vision. It sounds unnecessary, but you’d be surprised how inclusion to this degree can inspire your staff to renewed effort, and can refocus your dedication to them.
With this advice, we hope you can make the most of your business and level up, despite the inconsistent working expectations of the last year.
The pandemic has hit millions of businesses around the world, causing them to make major cuts in employment, budget, and for some, permanent closure. If your small business has managed to make it this far, then you’re probably looking for ways to work smarter, decrease expenditure, and appeal to your target audience more than ever. Thankfully, even though the pandemic is still at large, many restrictions are being lifted, which is allowing businesses to continue trading. However, staying smart and vigilant is essential to help your business stay on track. Here are some amazing tips on how to work smarter during the pandemic.
Cutting back costs in 2020 might have been a priority for your business, and if you had to cut back on marketing costs and begin tackling it yourself, you’ll know how much time and effort it takes. However, you can have the best of both worlds! While a permanent in-house marketing team would be ideal, if your budget doesn’t stretch that far then you may run into issues. Outsourcing marketing allows you to let an experienced professional create and run your marketing campaigns - but only as and when you need them! Paying a freelancer say, once a month, rather than for every day of the month will save you money and prevent your marketing from falling down the drain.
Look bigger than you are
One of the downsides of being a small business is that quite often, customers would rather entrust their money with larger businesses because they think larger businesses are more trustworthy. While this isn’t necessarily the case, making your business look like a larger corporation may help you attract more customers. You can do this by:
Sell COVID-friendly products or services
Finally, we’re living in an age where anything to help survive the pandemic is something people will want. Find ways to incorporate COVID-friendly products or services into your niche. Whether it’s a branded face-mask, an app to help cure boredom, or even hacks to help stay safe, people will be interested in buying from a company they know and love. Appeal to the COVID market and you’ll notice a considerable improvement in sales!
Are you exploring new ways to grow your business and strengthen your brand? If so, then you should think about the best ways to use the power of your clients and customers. These are a few of the possibilities that we strongly recommend you consider.
Use Their Opinions
First, you should think about whether you can use the opinions and thoughts of your customers. They might be able to explain to you the best ways to move forward with your business. Don’t forget, when you’re looking to improve your company it’s important to move in directions that your customers want to see. No one knows what directions these are more than your customers themselves. You might think that customers aren’t going, to be honest when you interact with them. While this might be the case, there are ways to skirt around this issue, such as by using Mystery Shopping experiences. Here customers get a product to review but don’t know what the brand is and deliver honest feedback.
Use Their Content
Next, you should think about whether you can use content from customers to your advantage. User-generated content can be helpful because it allows you to connect with that individual customer. It will also help you reach their followers. Don’t forget, that customers are far more likely to trust the word of other clients rather than your brand. User-generated content also makes your business seem more accessible and that’s always going to provide a tremendous benefit.
Use Their Reviews
Next, you should think about using reviews in your business. Do note that a mixture of positive and negative reviews is far better than zero reviews for your business online. That’s why you should make sure that you are encouraging customers to leave reviews. You should do this after the completion of a sale. Business owners often assume that it’s going to be difficult to get customers to leave reviews. However, this is not the case. The reality is that they will drop reviews if you ask the right way and provide some client aftercare instead of just abandoning them once a sale is complete.
Use Their Reach
Finally, you might also want to consider using their reach to gain more customers and clients for your business. One of the best ways to do this is through promotional merchandise. The right sponsored merch will be worn and used by your clients. This means that they can effortlessly spread the word about your business. You just need to spend a little time ensuring that the merch is attractive and stylish enough that clients want to use it. You might even want to consider using popular brand items to promote your company in this way such as Nike or Adidas sportswear.
We hope this helps you understand some of the key ways that you can use your customers and clients to your advantage. By taking the right steps here, you’ll find that your customers can become your strongest asset and help you grow your business, even in a short period.
Back in March 2020, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, millions of people around the world began commuting to their kitchen tables and makeshift home office nooks, few believed they'd still be there now, nearly a year later. And yet, here we are.
The big question looming in many employees' and leaders' minds alike is, what does it all mean for the future of work? Some argue that the great work-from-home experiment of 2020 will lead to the end of offices forever. Others say the last year, in fact, proved we need offices for the collaboration, the creativity, and simply the excuse to get out of the house they provide. You can find the five top tips we learnt about remote working over at Inc...
There are over 500 million blogs in the world at the moment and they are growing year on year. If you are just starting or you are a seasoned blogger, you will want to ensure your blog stands out from the crowd. Check out this post which shows you some ways to better your blog. Another important area that will help with your blog is increasing the Domain Authority. For those not familiar with this phrase, the Domain Authority is a calculation that rates your blog from 1 to 100. The higher you are on the scale the higher your blog will appear on search engine rankings. Also, if you wish to make money from your blog, the higher your Domain Authority the more you can ask for paid opportunities. Below are some ways you can improve your Domain Authority and get your blog higher up the rankings.
Building links to your site is a great way of increasing your Domain Authority. A word of caution though, you want backlinks from quality sites, sites that have a higher Domain Authority to your own. Focus your time on getting links that will improve your site, if you don’t have a lot of time to do this yourself, consider employing a link building service.
Internal link building
As well as getting backlinks from other websites, you can increase your Domain Authority through the internal structure of your blog. This means in each blog post you should include 2 or 3 links to other posts you have. This is such an easy way to build your internal link structure and get your Domain Authority moving in the right direction.
Remove broken links
Having broken links can impact your Domain Authority so go through all your posts and ensure all links are working. This may be time-consuming but it is worth it in the end. It’s an easy fix to ensure it doesn’t negatively impact your Domain Authority.
Be an Authority in Your Niche
Having quality articles is important, especially to your Domain Authority and to Google. Choose a niche and write high-quality posts within that area. An area that people will search for time and time again. If you are helping your audience Google may even use your article for a snippet which means you will be the very first link on page one.
Search Engine Optimisation
Ensure your blog is SEO optimized so that when search engines crawl your site they can see your content and offer this up to those who are searching. This means ensuring you have a meta title and meta description especially on your pictures, your home page and you make use of heading tags too. Once you start using all these tools they will become second nature and it will make all the difference to your Domain Authority.
It can be daunting considering all these things to improve your Domain Authority but with practice and determination, you will increase the authority of your blog.
If you want to survive and help your business to grow, then you need to make sure that you have a steady stream of business clients. In the old days, this was a case of you simply sending out a flyer or even a postcard. You might have even been able to put your ad in a local paper, but right now, things work very differently. You have to make sure that you adapt to what is around you and you also need to make sure that you are willing to figure out the best way to really get your business on the map. If you don’t then you may find that you end up struggling to get noticed and this is the last thing that you need.
Verify Google Business
If you are running a B2B business, then you have to make sure that you are as professional as the companies you are marketing to. Your Google Business Profile is what gives your business the opportunity to show up in search results. It also shows up when someone types in your company name on the internet. Google is getting better at catering to users all the time and this free listing should always be your top priority. Ideally, you would use your business profile to promote your company, not to mention that it also helps to verify legitimacy. You can do this through your very own Google My Business account. When you are able to verify ownership of your company, you can then optimise your listing. This will help you to show up much higher in the search results and it will give you access to much more advertising options. If you are able to show on Google Maps, then this will help you to really make the most out of your local SEO efforts.
Print Leaflets and Flyers
You may think that this is a very outdated way for you to do business, but this is not the case at all. In fact, printing leaflets and flyers is actually a fantastic way for you to make the most out of your marketing campaign, if you combine it with your other efforts. If you are going down the flyer route then you have to make sure that you incorporate your website and you also need to make sure that you add plenty of digital information. This could include your social media handle, for example. If you want to make the most out of your marketing, then it would be wise for you to use large format printing machines.
It’s one thing for you to promote your company, but it is another for Google to promote your company. SEO will ultimately determine your ranking algorithm, so you have to make sure that you put in the work to boost your ranking. If you want to boost your SEO, then you need to add relevant keywords that are based on your location as well as your industry. You also need to make sure that you add them to specific places on your site too. At the end of the day, if you can produce high-quality content with tagged images then this will help you out in the long run and it will also help you to maintain a solid site that brings in business for years to come.
The COVID-19 pandemic posed a significant challenge for businesses and economies globally, prompting business closures and labor cuts in 2020. The pandemic wasn't all doom and gloom however, as some sectors and industry recorded significant growth in their operations. Statistics showed that the ecommerce industry is booming daily and expected to reach $6.54 trillion by 2022. However, the industry is continuously evolving and requires you to stay updated with the latest trends to gain more traction, drive traffic and convert into buying consumers. Take a look at the top five ecommerce trends you should expect in 2021.
1. Brands will partner with influencers
This has been a key trend in recent years as ecommerce platforms are falling on influencers to reach their vast followers. The influencer marketing industry is becoming a significant boom for ecommerce brands, and it's projected to hit $9.7 billion in 2020. Do you know why? Experts have indicated that brands have a content creation problem since they cannot create enough marketing content to match their marketing strategies. In 2021, they’ll be looking to partner with influencers to support their content creation process, likely in the form of a content agency. Additionally, we'll see ecommerce brands include paid media spending to enhance their audience reach.
2. Video ads on social media.
Last year, there was a significant increase in social media usage, and those numbers aren’t going to slow down in 2021. According to statistics, social media recorded more than 3.6 billion users in 2020, a figure expected to hit 4.41 billion by 2025. With the current trend, several brands have begun to utilize the story features on platforms like TikTok, Instagram, and Snapchat to promote their products and services. The next stage will be the advancement of social media trading. Last year, we witnessed Facebook launch Instagram shops while Shopify partnered with TikTok. This year, we'll see how brands can manage these changes. However, for a D2D brand, you can record videos of your highest performing items and post them on social media platforms where you can discover your most targeted audience.
3. New payment options
Many customers use the availability of payment options to choose between brands they deal with. Failure to offer a customer's preferred payment option means they'll have to look to another ecommerce store. Apart from the acceptance of smartcards by ecommerce shops as payment methods, there are several existing payment platforms like PayPal, Apple, or Samsung Pay, and Inoviopay. However, with the low exchange cost and inability to reverse transactions associated with cryptocurrencies like bitcoin, many online shops will now be looking to accept it as payment options in 2021.
4. Voice commerce will grow
Individuals are progressively depending on voice assistance gadgets like the Amazon Echo with Alexa and Google Assistant to do just about everything, from serving as alarms and reminders to making purchases on the internet. A survey has proposed that an estimated 75% of U.S. families will own a smart speaker by 2025. Meanwhile, voice trade deals are projected to reach $40 billion by 2022. Another motivation behind the rising voice commerce trading is the accuracy and ease of innovation. Both Amazon and Google are pushing local languages in their virtual assistance programs to enhance shopping experiences.
In conclusion, there’ll be several businesses hoping to rule the ecommerce market, which is why you should adopt these new trends as early as possible if you want your business company to thrive in 2021. Marketplaces, voice commerce, and artificial intelligence will be standard, while an increasing number of online businesses will begin accepting crypto payments to allure more clients to their brand.
Most businesses will work with one or more agencies as an integral part of their day to day marketing strategy. Having a good relationship with the agencies you work with can make a huge difference to the success of your marketing.
Everyone has heard horror stories about agencies that have underperformed, drained resources, or just failed to live up to expectations. And while there are both good and bad agencies out there, it is often a number of easily avoidable factors that can doom the relationship.
So if you’re thinking about engaging with an agency to do your PR, web design, social media marketing, etc, then follow these tips in order to get the very best.
Get the brief right
Creating a detailed, realistic brief is the first step. You need to be clear about what you are looking for, the scope of work, how results will be measured, and indicative budgets. An agency will then be able to flag any issues with regards to what you’re hoping to achieve and what services they can provide. You can then reshape the brief together or move on.
Mismatched expectations when working together can quickly become apparent and can lead to the souring of the relationship.
Set key performance indicators
Being clear about what needs to be achieved is very important. For instance, if you’re working with a corporate video production agency, you should know what they are expected to deliver in terms of project management, timescale, additional costs, etc. By having these set-out and agreed upon between you as you start working together, you will be able to hold them to account for the work they are delivering. If these aren’t in place, you again have mismatched expectations that can cause the relationship to break down.
Streamline the points of contact
You will likely have an account manager, who will be your point of contact for the agency. You might well get to know other members of the team too, but your account manager will be the person you deal with the most. This helps an agency keeps track of their work and builds relationships with their clients.
It makes sense to have a similar process on your side too. If all employees start contacting the agency, requesting jobs be done, then it can complicate the entire process. It’s your job to be the point of contact for your company, to streamline your requests and communicate feedback. It will be less confusing for everyone and your agency won’t become confused, not knowing who it should be listening to.
Deal with issues promptly
If you’re not happy with some work the agency has done, or are concerned about any other aspect of the relationship, you should raise it with your account manager immediately. Usually, it is something that can be remedied quickly and you can move on. If you don’t raise it, it can start to build resentment towards the agency. It is much more difficult to come back from this.
Agencies can be the driving force behind your success, but this can only happen if you choose the right one and the lines of communication are open. Most issues stem from unclear expectations and failure to communicate effectively.
When you work in construction, you are working in a dangerous occupation and there is no getting away from that fact. It's never a fully safe working environment, from the materials you use to create a structure or foundation, to the tools you use to get the job done. Construction is often all about edges, excavation, collaborating with others to ensure a safe build with hazardous material. When you don't manage the site and the equipment on site correctly, you end up with a bad working environment - not something anyone should be aiming for.
Health and safety is important in any industry, but in construction it can literally mean the difference between life and death. Whether you use forklifts and diggers or you handle corrosive materials and Fosroc chemicals, you cannot make mistakes. Understanding which health and safety measures are most important as you work will enable you to complete construction projects without worrying that you're doing it wrong. Below, we've got five safety measures that you should be taking when on the construction projects you gain.
We all want to work less and earn more, don’t we? It’s the dream, the final step towards that ever-elusive ‘work/life balance.’ And yet, until now, most of us have assumed that it’s a myth. After all, you get out what you put in – everyone knows that!
Unless maybe you don’t. According to recent reports, US workers who put in as many as 60 hours each week were less likely than their peers to have received a bonus in the last three years.
Far from being an injustice, this is clear evidence that you don’t have to work yourself into the ground to get ahead. In fact, doing so could be hindering your earnings, and here’s why.
A focus on quantity not quality
When we push ourselves too far to be productive, we fall into a focus on quantity rather than quality. After all, a sixty-hour workweek might sound impressive, but there’s no way you can produce good work for that length of time. Rather, you’re liable to work like a sleep-deprived zombie trudging towards a deadline. And, your efforts will be as flat as your pulse!
By comparison, employees who stick to the forty-hour standard may well come in and boss it on the quality front, meaning that their shorter timeframe is worth more than your long one. Which begs the question, why would you bother to work more in the first place?
An inability to hand over responsibility
If you’re too focused on being the hardest working, then you’re more likely to take everything on your shoulders. This may seem like a valiant effort, but martyrdom is never good. If you’re juggling product development on top of lead generation, you’re more liable to wear yourself down and drop both balls.
By comparison, outsourcing allows you to hone your time, and clock off at a decent hour. All with the promise of better results. After all, outsourcing managed IT means that you can get cybersecurity right at last while turning to a lead generation company ensures that time you spend converting is time well spent. Far from a failure, accepting that you can’t do it all is fundamental to making the most possible money from your time.
Failure to see straight
It’s also worth noting that, the more you work, the less you can see simple solutions to challenges. And, when this happens, you spend more time developing less satisfactory responses.
Switching your brain off sometimes is the ideal way to solve production dilemmas or close leads at last. Much like when we’re falling asleep, our brains often find answers to these things themselves when left to their devices. By comparison, hunching over a desk and considering things for too long will make it trickier for you to reach satisfactory conclusions, as well as taking ever more of that precious time.
So, you see, it may sound impressive when you state you’ve worked a sixty-hour week, but is it really the right way to earn more? Probably not.
Author - chris
Author, Editor, Creator of this website.