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UI/UX Design and the Future of Retail

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Have you ever picked up an item in a physical store only to Google the price online? Perhaps, you go to a brick-and-mortar bookstore but always end up buying off of Amazon instead. This is how new-age shoppers behave. Most are spoiled by the world of online shopping, where a website’s user experience and the interface are designed to capture our attention and send us straight to the checkout. When a website is poorly designed, most of us have no problem opening up a new browser and moving onto a different site entirely. Us shoppers are fickle, which is why UI/UX design is so important. In fact, the future of retail hinges on both. After all, we will always instinctively choose the shopping experience that is seamless and smooth.

Automation is the Future of Retail

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There is a reason why UI design services are so important to e-commerce stores and physical retailers with an online presence. Automation is the way of the future. This is why more shoppers are choosing to stay online and ditching physical retailers all-together. UI/UX design allows for intuition-driven shopping and user-friendly interfaces. Customers are inherently drawn to shopping experiences that are easy.

After all, shopping in a store can involve lots of friction: rude staff, long lines, and even being too hot or too cold are all reasons why consumers are moving online. People have the option of choosing between several stores offering the same products. At the end of the day, they will always intuitively go with the one that offers the most pleasant user experience. In online retail, this means quality UI design services.

What does this Mean for Physical Stores?

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When it comes to the future of retail, all is not lost for physical stores, but things don’t look great either. UI/UX design can make e-commerce stores a formidable competitor. After all, most storefronts can’t compete with the intuition and data-driven models used to create online stores.

However, physical stores can keep up if they move into the automation process and offer better shopping experiences by engaging data in their physical locales. Engaging both can help stores to lift up a sagging bottom line and provide better revenue margins. More importantly, they can help to boost customer loyalty by using data to cater go given demographics, much like online retailers already do.

Unfortunately, modern shoppers do want instant gratification. They have less patience than consumers of the past, something UI/UX design has only exacerbated. In this way, shoppers hate physical stores for the simple reason they may have to stand in line, engage with cashiers, or search high/low for a given size or product. Online retail is difficult to compete with because it is all about ease and instant gratification.

The Takeaway

Thanks to UI design and UX design, online retailers are surging in sales. Comparatively, physical stores are having difficulty keeping up with the ease and seamless design that online retailers can bring. They often lack the intuitive features that solid UI design services can bring. When it comes to the future of retail, online is king.

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Business

Tips For Small Business Owners

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This article talks about the tips for small business owners. Here you will find advice from successful business owners like how to adapt to adversaries, getting a Contract Management System, and delegation.

Running a business is challenging. It can be frustrating for business owners to know just how complicated running a business is. Contrary to popular belief, it is not easy as just setting up your business and waiting for it to be successful. We are all too familiar with the success stories of the CEOs of multi-billion global companies. Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates, and Steve Jobs are just some household names that have inspired many due to their unprecedented stories of success.

Their tales of triumph would always begin with, “It all started with a dream.” Blah blah blah. I am sure that you have heard of all those cliched stuff that makes for a great inspirational story. However, what they do not tell is that it is not a black-and-white story. There are multiple factors that affected their success.

Here we have compiled a list of advice from business owners that have achieved success. Take note that there is no perfect formula and these are just advice that majorly helped these companies.

Set a Clear Mission and Vision Statement

Before you set forth with creating your company, one important thing that you have to do is to set a clear mission and vision statement. The vision and mission statements of a company has a lot of uses. The purpose of your organization and its future endeavours are all dependent on the goals that you’ve set.

First of all, it will provide you with the purpose that your company will need when it faces adversary. Your Mission and Vision statement would also play a crucial role for your decision making.

As a business owner, your main task will be to make the big decisions. Use your Mission and Vision statement to help you decide which avenue to take. Always ask yourself as to which action would help you accomplish your goal better.

Research Existing Competition

Go around your local area and check whether you have any competition. Take note of what they are doing and ensure that you do something better. There is nothing wrong with getting ideas from your competition as long as you don’t exactly plagiarise their tactics. Just get the general gist and tweak it to your advantage.

Be Innovative

Most of the companies  in the Fortune 500 list achieved their success because their products/services were able to fill a void in the market. They re-invented the wheel so to speak. You don’t necessarily have to come up with an entirely new and original idea. You can take existing ideas and then give it a dash of creativity.

One thing that you have to know is that the market is very volatile. It will experience a lot of changes. You don’t necessarily have to keep up with all of the shifts but you do have to know how to adapt to these market changes.

Perhaps the best example of this would be Blockbuster and Netflix. Blockbuster used to be a mega-company that dominated the Video Rental agency. For a small fee, you can watch any video that you want. It was the norm for anyone to pass by a Blockbuster store to borrow a film to watch for that night. However, the rise of popularity of the Internet and streaming sites spelt out its demise. Without adapting to the market, it has become a warning sign to businesses that adaptability is key to staying on top.

Netflix, on the other hand, went the other way of Blockbuster by changing its business format and became a streaming site. Today, the annual gross income of Netflix is a whopping 16 Billion Dollars.

Invest In A Contract Management Software

You need organization in your life. No matter how small or huge your business is, you need to organize your systems. One important aspect that you have to take care of are your contracts. It is an important asset for your company.

When you have a Contract Management Software in place, you will have a full visual of your contracts and their performance. This means that you will most likely have a better grasp of how to manage your company. It will also allow you to mitigate the risks that you might otherwise take.

Learn To Delegate

You can’t do it on your own. You need to trust your employees with some of the key processes of your company. One mistake that new business owners often make is that they do not give specific tasks to each person which leads to chaos and miscommunication. Having a proper organizational structure will allow you to improve the accountability of everyone in the office. You will also be able to pinpoint any non-performing members of your organization and make the appropriate action.

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Trends You Need to Know About in Business Education

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Business is a fast-changing world, with quantum leaps in technology and globalization making yesterday’s “next big thing” rapidly obsolete.

Business education is changing too — and probably not fast enough. Academia tends to be slow to shake off the shackles of tradition, evolving more incrementally and less radically.

There are few fields in which educators need to remain so informed of the latest trends and technologies, in order to provide their students with an education that is up to date and relevant to the constantly moving target that is today’s business world.

Here are five top trends in business education that are happening now.

1) The Workplace Of Tomorrow Will Need Soft Skills Like Creativity, Communication And Problem Solving.

Advances in artificial intelligence, robotics and computing will replace many workers in the near future. Yet they will also create a demand for skills unique to humans, including creativity, critical thinking, communication, problem solving, innovation, collaboration and adaptability.

Technical skills will always be needed and shouldn’t be overlooked by any business student, but the coming trend in business is big thinkers with the skills to harness the powers of human creation.

2) Digital Learning Platforms, Online Education And Hybrid Formats Will Become The New Normal.

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The days of getting a traditional four-year bachelor’s degree followed by a two-year MBA at a brick-and-mortar university are in decline. While there is undeniable value in a broad-based foundation in business education, rising costs have burdened students with enormous student debts and led many to question whether the return on this investment makes it worthwhile.

Also, the rapidly changing business climate has raised many doubts about whether a one-time education is adequate to equip business grads for the changes sure to come in the years ahead. Online education, continuing education, digital learning platforms and hybrid formats that include both classroom and remote education are widely seen as the wave of the future.

3) Expect To See More One-year Mba Degrees — And More Hiring With No Degree At All.

Fast-track MBAs for working professionals are another growing trend, in which people with a given amount of professional experience can attend courses for one year and emerge as certified business management professionals.

In addition, more forward-looking companies are abandoning the requirement for any college degree at all, recognizing that targeted alternative training and real-world job experience can be more valuable than a college diploma.

4) Entrepreneurship Is And Will Remain A Growing Field.

Apple, Google, Microsoft, Amazon and Facebook are the five most valuable companies in the world — all of them tech companies and all founded by entrepreneurs (several of whom were college dropouts).

The chances are good that all of these companies have affected your life in a personal way. They employ hundreds of thousands of people and have a combined market capitalization of around $5 trillion. And each of them was founded by a small handful of forward-looking people harnessing new, disruptive technologies.

Machines and robots cannot replace this kind of uniquely human innovation. Business schools will and must increasingly teach the skills needed to start new enterprises that can literally change the world, in big ways and small.

5) If You’re Betting On The Future, Think Ai, Stem And Big Data.

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Having said all of the above about human innovation, let’s not forget that the machine-based “thinking” behind artificial intelligence (AI) — like the driverless cars that our grandchildren will someday take for granted — are a supremely important component of future business development. And someone will have to create, hone and perfect these technologies.

Studies in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) are among the surest ways to climb aboard this inevitable wave.

The same is true of “big data” — the hyper-explosion of information that is available to us all, but is too much to grasp without intelligent analytics and insightful processing. Talented professionals will be needed in the years to come to turn millions of data points into actionable business plans that will work in the real world.

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Starting A Tech Company? 5 Clever Ways To Afford All the Tech You Need For Your Business

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Permit fees, employee expenses, equipment, and advertising are only some of the business startup costs you should keep in mind when building your business. However, these costs may vary on an industry basis.

If you’re starting a tech company, your inventory and equipment may be the highest startup costs. You might be thinking twice about building your startup due to lack of funding, but this shouldn’t stop you.

Don’t know how to fund a tech business? We’ve got you covered. We’ll tell you everything about your options. Read on for your guide to choose the best funding to start building your tech startup today.

Can You Get Funding You Need When Starting a Tech Company?

Most technology entrepreneurs think twice about building their startup due to lack of funding. However, affording the basic startup costs is easier than you think. Today, founders can even secure funding that won’t cost them a thing.

Don’t know what we’re talking about? Here are the top 5 funding options you should consider to start a tech company.

1. Small Business Loan

Small business loans are one of the most popular funding options for companies big and small. Before applying for a loan for a small business, you should search for lenders who specialize in funding companies in your industry. Choosing a financial institution that understands your business model will allow you to secure more funding at better terms.

2. Equipment Loan

Equipment can be one of the biggest costs tech startups face. Certain lenders offer equipment loans to cover these assets. It will depend on the type of machinery you need and your company financials.

3. Small Business Grants

Small business grants are given to startups and business owners by private companies, the Federal and State government. While it may take some time to receive a grant, these funds come with no strings attached. You won’t have to repay the institution.

4. Inventory Backed Loan

So you bought the inventory to fulfill your orders, but you need to buy equipment or other supplies to produce the items. You can request an inventory backed loan to cover these additional costs.

The lender will use your inventory as collateral on the loan. Typically, financial institutions offer 75% of the inventory appraised value or 50% of its cost.

5. Account Receivable Loan

Maybe your startup idea was a hit and you don’t have enough capital to fulfill all the orders coming in. You don’t want to turn these customers away. An account receivable loan can allow you to secure the funding you need.

Lenders offer early payment of an outstanding invoice in exchange for a fee. In this loan, your invoice will be the collateral on the loan.

The Bottom Line

Starting a tech company can be the best decision you’ll ever make. It will all come down to developing the right business plan to turn your vision into reality. While lack of funding may be holding you back, there are many funding options available.

It’s vital to do your research and choose the type of funding that fits your business plan. You may consider consulting with an expert to get a clear idea of the best approach depending on your business financials.

Want to learn more ways to turn your business idea into a reality? Check out our Business section to find more insightful articles.

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