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Survey shows we have reason to believe in 2012

Released just a few weeks ago, the 6th annual Staples National Small Business Survey found that 70% of small business owners are optimistic about the future. “Further, 52% of small business owners revealed they would grow their business through advertising and direct marketing if they had a larger marketing budget,” the press release proclaims. Although […]

Suggestive situations

When you tell your employees to upsell whenever they can, are you arming them with tangible ways to do so? Or are they left with the ol’ “Didja want fries with that” model? Consider John Matthews, founder and president of Gray Cat Enterprises, Inc., and his post on Convenience Store Decisions magazine’s website called Local […]

Is NFC for Y-O-U?

Near-field communication, or NFC, is technology that lets two devices close to each other exchange simple transactions or data. While it has the potential to be used for a variety of things, one big focus currently is to make instant payments at retail outlets. Many smartphones these days feature a NFC chip, so that when […]

Is your shop senior-friendly?

I was recently at an event where an older friend of mine, who uses a walker but is otherwise both spry and independent, excused herself to use the ladies room. Another friend noticed some time had passed since she had left, and went to check on her. We soon learned she had fallen in the […]

Waxing nostalgic

When I was a kid, we rarely had junk food in the house. Now I’m a grown-up, making food purchasing decisions. And recently, retro packaging got the best of me: Why did they leap into my shopping cart this summer? I guess it’s because that when I last saw these logos, I had less stress, […]

Contests constitute a winning strategy

Whether it’s a sweepstakes, raffle or competition, contest events can bring excitement to your shop or business. Consider the fabulous ideas Rich Kizer and Georganne Bender put forth in their recent “Kizer and Bender’s Retail Adventures in the REAL World” blog post, specifically geared toward craft retailers. In his article for CPAportal.com, consultant Jim O’Donnell […]

Five tips for social media success

Is one of your resolutions to use social media more in 2011? If not, it should be. In July, Facebook surpassed 500 million active users. The fiber industry is particularly lucky to have the fantastic platform of Ravelry. Even being on Etsy can help you keep tabs on competitors, learn new trends in the handmade […]

Social media and savings

A recent article in Ad-ology cites research that claims 47% of women are using social media interaction with retailers to find coupons and promotions. (For the record, the same study, done by Empathica, found that 33% of men are, too.) “A smaller number of consumers, 30%, follow a brand on a social network because they’re […]