Now You Can Shop on Pinterest

On June 30th, Pinterest made it able to all its users to buy certain items on their pin boards; these "buyable pins" were differentiated by a blue "buy it" button.

Pinterest launched as the first "online pin board" and planning tool in 2010, and users from all over the word began to use it exactly in the ways the founders had hoped. Pins vary from recipes, to DIY projects, to arts & technology, to destinations around the globe, and much more.

By now, you can find around 60 million buyable pins (differentiated by a clear "Buy it" sign,) with some big-name brands participating in the project such as Wayfair and Bloomingdale’s. Even though Pinterest is known for being the place where you can get inspiration to either find new interesting products from popular stores around you, or create your own, their ability to provide a more complete experience to its customers will change how we see and interact with the platform.




Some of the perks of this new feature is that, first, as a customer, you know exactly which pins you could potentially buy by looking at the signs, and you can also see other detailed information about the item, such as color and/or sizes, and second, you don't have to do research to actually find those products elsewhere (Amazon, Ebay, or specific brands) so as a customers you will see that the work that's involved in buying a certain product has just become much, much easier. At the same time, you don't have to worry about seeing more "buyable pins" than the typical pins you usually like to find for inspiration, because those pins are still more than those you can buy.

What are your thoughts about buyable pins? Or, how do you think this will affect the future of Pinterest?


Posted in <a href="">Business</a>, <a href="">Pinterest</a>, <a href="">Sales</a> | Post Comment | 86

Download on 4 Valuable Sales Skills

Screen shot 2015-07-22 at 10.34.47 AM.pngSales are fun! And so incredibly important to your business, regardless of what you do. Sales to your business is like your IV, without it, you may shrivel up and die. Joke, but really your sales force is your lifeline that will keep you afloat out there in this tough business world. Which is why it is so important that you download on all of the best sales skills and them into your own strategies.

I compiled a list of 4 Basic Sales Skills that could be implemented into any industry sales force.

1. LISTEN TO THE CLIENT. The most important skill to close the most sales is just to simply listen! Ask them questions, learn about their needs and what specifically they are looking for. This makes them feel like an individual and less like another lead for you to check off. Listening to the client will make them feel like their business is important to you. Be sure to follow up with relevant questions to prove that you listened to them, and understand what they need. 

2. SELL THE PRODUCT, NOT THE PITCH. Too many salespersons get lost in their sales pitch and forget the main reason why they are selling. You are selling a product and its this product will be the outcome for the client. The product is also what sets you a part from all the other business with similar product. Sell what is unique about the product instead of focusing on a fancy sales process. The outcome for the client is the product, but the outcome for your business is the client. Keep the outcome in mind for both yourself and what the client is looking for. 

3. STAY REAL. There is not a single person who will buy from you, if you don't stay real and upfront with the Client. Part of staying real is remaining Honest. Do not ever lie to a potential client. its never a good idea and it could come back to haunt you. If you don't know the answer to something, don't make something up but say that you don't know but will find out. 

4. NETWORK. You never know who will be important to you business, which is why its an important to value every person that you come across. Those who don't look like much on the surface could later turn into your most valuable client. Also, never write off a person who has turned you down, or wasn't all that interested at the time, because they could later come back because you made an impression on them and they returned for your business over another. 

Although basic, these 4 skills could be the cornerstone to your sales force that you can build off of when putting together your business strategies. They could really help you stand out from your competitors in the marketplace. 

If you have any comments or tips on how you have used these skills in your business, feel free to leave a comment below!

Posted in <a href="">Business</a>, <a href="">Customer Service</a>, <a href="">Fun Stuff</a>, <a href="">How To Tips</a>, <a href="">Sales</a>, <a href="">Small Business Resources</a> | Post Comment | 86

3 Small Business Pain Points That Can Already Be Solved With Software

Every business has pain points.  Some have them worse than others; but, as the SaaS (software as a service) industry has picked up, there are now several easy solutions for business pain points that most people are unaware of.  Here are three solutions that you can take advantage of today:

  1. Social Media Solutions for Pain PointsSocial Media Suite:  It's 2014 and social media is everywhere.  You already know that you need a Facebook page, a Twitter page, Google+, LinkedIn and several other platforms that you've never heard of.  But, logging into each platform separately and posting to each platform one by one is monotonous and a waste of time.  With social media software, you can now post to every platform from one place.  That one place also has reporting, and it automatically posts new blog posts to all of your platforms.  Social media is necessary in the workplace; but, with quality software, it's also easy.
  2. Form Builder and Landing Page Generator:  Anyone with experience using WordPress, Joomla, or the like, knows that creating new web pages is easy.  But, did you know that you can easily turn those pages into lead capturing machines?  Adding a custom contact form, a survey, or a payment form couldn't be easier.  With three clicks of the mouse, you can add a form to your website that collects contact information, or processes Visa and Mastercard.  Adding new pages and gaining additional website traffic is great and all, but increasing your opportunity to convert is priceless.
  3. User Employee Management Pain Points SolvedEmployee/User Manager:  Not only can you store passwords online in your website, but you can limit access to those who need it.  If you are forced with the task of firing an employee, remove their access before breaking the bad news.  If you're hiring someone new, then limit their access to what they need and give them new access as necessary.  The days of being foiled by an old employee are long gone, and the days of easy user management are here.  The system can even track employee performance, so you know who did what and when they did it.

Above are three pain points that can be solved today.  In addition to them, we have dozens of software modules that are ready to solve your pain points with the click of a button.  Don't let your pain get in the way of growing your business.  Let your tools do what you don't want to do, so you can focus on what you need to do.

Posted in <a href="">Business</a>, <a href="™-platform.php">LunaSoft™ Platform</a>, <a href="">Productivity Hacks</a>, <a href="">Sales</a>, <a href="">Small Business Resources</a>, <a href="">Social Media</a>, <a href="">Social Media Marketing</a>, <a href="">Software As A Service</a> | Post Comment | 48

3 Tips to Make Your Website Convert More Often

Of course, there are dozens of ways by which you can increase the conversion rate of your website to increase revenue.  You could redesign your entire website and set up a series of A/B Tests, which would cost a pretty penny; or, you could make some minor adjustments that don't take up very much time or resources:

  1. make website convert more often with testimonialsOffer Proof of Value: Instead of having your company website claim that you're the best in the world at what you do, show your audience why that's the case.  Adding testimonials can do this pretty quickly.  You could also do a case study, or drive traffic to review sites, like Yelp, where you already have glowing reviews.  You could also prove it with videos of the product/service or by giving a live demo.  You could even promote social media pages where you have had great engagement from your current customers.  Show your audience that you're the best, and eliminate the need to tell them.
  2. Reduce Potential Risk:  When you checkout at any brick and mortar store, it's nice to know that you can always return to the store and receive a full refund in you are not satisfied with your purchase.  Now, apply that logic to your website.  If you have a warranty, then make that obvious.  Will you provide a lifetime of customer service?  How about a pain compensation guarantee, or a free trial?  Anything that reduces the buyers risk at the point of sale will make them more comfortable when proceeding to give you their money.
  3. Remove Website Distractions:  You may have a cool slider that features all kinds of modernistic graphics with javascript popups, complex sidebars and more.  Now, ask yourself, why do I need all of that stuff?  The answer is that you probably don't need all of it, and some of it may be preventing your website from converting.  It's very easy for a customer to get distracted when they're browsing through any website.  You need your calls to action to be in very clear places that tell the customer his or her next step.  Having too many links on the sidebar, or an overcrowded main navigation can send your customers into loops of frustration that end with them leaving the website.  In website development, less can be more.

In conclusion, make the little changes that don't cost a leg and an arm.  You can increase your conversion rate, get more value out of your website; and, most of all, increase your businesses' digital revenue.  You've earned that website traffic, so make sure you're traffic is converting into money in your pocket.

Posted in <a href="">Business</a>, <a href="">How To Tips</a>, <a href="™-platform.php">LunaSoft™ Platform</a>, <a href="">Sales</a>, <a href="">Web Development</a> | Post Comment | 160

Why Buy Anything When You Can Rent?

Digital Media For Rent Consumer TrendsLast week, we talked about changing consumer trends that could stem from the implementation of the Apple Pay System.  While we are patiently waiting for that evidence to accumulate, we turn our heads to another consumer trend that has quietly moved into the mainstream: Renting.  Many products have been frequently rented over the years, including cars, movies, skis, and more.  Society has seemingly always rented those items; but, over the past few years, we have watched as several other items have become available to renters, and the public has responded by reducing the number of products that they own.

Renting textbooks has evolved from a trend to a staple for college students across the country.  Why spend hundreds of dollars on something that has extremely minimal use after the conclusion of the semester?  In addition to textbooks, you can now rent everything from designer handbags to power tools.   So, with the rental trend on the up, what's happening to consumer trends within the digital media industry?  Just this morning, Wired published a piece stating how Apple and Amazon are in trouble due to the rental trend.  

The irony in the matter is that Apple and Amazon have expedited the trend by offering products that eliminate the need to own.  Amazon Instant Video allows users to stream movies, tv shows and more, from anywhere, without actually downloading anything.  Users simply pay the fee to rent their media, they stream the media, and then the transaction/experience is over.  There is no download, and the user doesn't own the media.  In Apple's case, the increase in iPhone users has led to the increase in streaming music as well.  Companies like Spotify and Pandora offer a more complete listening experience without forcing users to purchase individual media files. 

Both Apple and Amazon have created products that lower their own profit margins.  The WSJ reported that digital music sales through iTunes has dropped by more than 13% in 2014 alone.  Amazon has reported one of their worst quarters in recent history, but both companies continue to press forward as not to fall behind the trends.  It's not like these companies are losing massive amounts of revenue.  Apple's newest iPhone release was record breaking, and Amazon still cashes in on every rental (just not as much as they would with sales).  Do you still buy products that can be rented?  Or, have you become a serial renter to save cash?  Please let us know in the comment section below.

Posted in <a href="">Business</a>, <a href="">Sales</a>, <a href="">Technology</a> | Post Comment | 167

Do People Like You? 3 Key Traits Likable People Possess

As a society we tend to place high value on people with extroverted personalities. Nowhere does this become more apparent than in business. While we can agree that it's an edge, extroversion should not be confused with superb people skills.

Most people will agree that they want to work with people they like, or at the very least, people they don't mind being around. Clients will evaluate you in much the same way —while you may be competent at what you do, if people don't like you, they surely won't want to work with you.You're fired.

3 Key Traits to Cultivate to Increase Sales & Better Your Business Relationships

Studies have shown that there are 3 characteristics shared by likable people: empathy, reliability and integrity. While cultivating them may take effort, the ability to attract and retain long-term business (and personal!) relationships is worth it.

#1. EmpathyEmpathy

By definition empathy is being able to be sensitive, relate to and understand the situation and/or perspective of another person. The majority of strong, lasting relationships have a foundation of mutual empathy, yet it's not only a skill that many lack, it's also hard to fake.

Empathy requires self-awareness as opposed to self-absorption. The ups and downs of your personal and professional life often influence how you empathize, with whom or whether you do at all.

Don't mistake empathy as a way of suggesting you need to be a people pleaser. It means that you need to cultivate the willingness to listen, react less and put yourself in the other person's position.

#2. IntegrityIntegrity

Take a peek at politics, entertainment, sports or business and it's easy to see how we've become a culture permeated with an unfortunate lack of integrity. If no one's watching, will you do the right thing? Will you speak up about wrong doing, even if it's not a popular opinion?

Smart and capable people are a dime a dozen, but integrity is more difficult to come by, especially in business. If you have it, you're likely leaps and bounds above much of your competition.

#3. ReliabilityReliability

Starbucks is a great example of reliability. With as much as I travel, I've been to a Starbucks in so many airports and cities, I've lost track. Rant about corporate coffee as much as you want, but here's why I continue to patronize Starbucks: whether I'm in Los Angeles or running through Minneapolis — St. Paul Int'l Airport, I can count on Starbucks to deliver my drink exactly as I want it without variation.

By cultivating a reputation for security, customers become attracted. If service is consistently reliable, people will continue to pay because they know what they'll get. The second service becomes manic, customers get nervous. Mistakes happen and most people will be understanding so long as it's rare. Deception on the other hand, tends to cause people to run for the hills and not look back.

Try and try again.

At the end of the day, we're all human. While it's impossible to be perfect all the time, try. If you're genuinely likable and consistently work to build strong relationships with your co-workers, current and perspective clients, as well as friends and family, it will be time well spent.

Posted in <a href="">Business</a>, <a href="">Customer Service</a>, <a href="">How To Tips</a>, <a href="">Inspiration</a>, <a href="">Life Hacks</a>, <a href="">Sales</a> | Post Comment

Life Hack: How To Use QR Codes As A Low-Cost, Effective Marketing Tool

You’ve seen them in grocery stores, on movie posters, on packages you’ve received in the mail. Those tiny squares of black and white digital hieroglyphics are everywhere. They’re called QR Codes (the QR stands for Quick Response) and they’re changing the way that businesses and organizations market and track the success of their products.

There’s a segment of your customer base that isn’t as interested in the magazines on your coffee as they are in the phones in their pockets.

That’s great news, if you want to develop a stronger and more direct connection to your customers. A quick scan with a smart phone can connect your customer with your website, twitter feed, or special promotional page. Coupled with the analytics software on your site you’ll be able to see where your customers go, where they don’t go, and how you can lead them to more relevant content.

Getting Started With QR Codes

Creating QR Codes is fast, simple, and best of all: FREE. and Google both offer QR Codes as part of their URL shortening services.

This is especially handy when you’d like to direct your customers to a special informational page on your site but the URL is too long and would be difficult typing into a smartphone’s keyboard.

For example, typing the below URL would be the ultimate pain if you had to type it into a your smartphone’s URL nav bar:

However, if you were to scan the QR Code below, it would enable your smartphone to open the above URL without doing more than opening an app & hitting Scan.

Try it!

QR Code Fun

When you reduce barriers between you and your customers, you create a wealth of information. Once a user has clicked through to your site you’ll be able to interpret that data through your analytics. This enables you to develop an understanding of how many people are scanning your QR Codes, not to mention (and this is totally the point, right?) what types of content or pages are your most popular.

Want to promote a sale? Offer a special promotion? Maybe you're headed to a conference and want to connect with new people on social media... All of these are great opportunities to use a QR code to enable fast, reliable information without placing extra hassle on the users. Another idea? Print out a QR Code, place it in your office reception or greeting area and track your results.

QR Codes Aren’t Magic

While QR Codes are a fantastic and innovative way to connect with your customers, they certainly can’t perform miracles. QR Codes aren’t perfect for every situation. For example, if you own a swimming pool or a sauna, it might not be a good idea to place one where your customers may not have their phone.

An increasing number of your customers are carrying around a smartphone — but not all of them, at least not yet. In the meantime, use QR Codes as sources of more information. You’ll find that using them as a perk will be more effective than using them as a sole point of information.

Feel Free To Experiment

QR Codes are a fantastic low-cost solution to a variety of marketing strategies, and they’re free. Putting one up in your waiting room and track the results could prove to be incredibly valuable to your business. Define what your goal is, then experiment with where you put the QR Code, what you’re linking to and track your results.

Whatever your goals we’re sure that you’ll find the using QR Codes a compelling, low-cost solution to your business and marketing strategy.

Friendly Competition

Of course you're up for some friendly competition! Take the info you've learned about QR codes and generate your own. Here's the fun part: connect with us on FaceBook and Twitter to share your QR creations. Although you could simply link it to your homepage, that's a bit of a cop out, right? We'll feature the most unique and awesome submissions. Sky's the limit, but keep it family friendly. What are you waiting for? Ready? Set? GO!

Posted in <a href="">Business</a>, <a href="">Fun Stuff</a>, <a href="">How To Tips</a>, <a href="">Inspiration</a>, <a href="">Life Hacks</a>, <a href="">Mobile</a>, <a href="">Sales</a>, <a href="">Small Business Resources</a>, <a href="">Technology</a> | Post Comment