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  1. For years banks took the role of providing loans for businesses, but nowadays, many other online platforms can offer loans to businesses. Here are some of the most popular ones: Accion is an international nonprofit dedicated to serving entrepreneurs, business owners, and communities. Founded as a community development initiative serving the poor in Venezuela, Accion is known as a pioneer in microfinance and fintech impact investing. Kiva is a nonprofit organization and collects money through crowdfunding loans. On Deck is a global online small business lending company from the United States. Enova is a USA based provider of online financial services to non-prime consumers and small businesses. Lidya is a USA holding financial institution that provides credit and finance access across a frontier and emerging markets. See more in my article:
  2. Modern retail is working to create a positive emotional atmosphere in stores. A good atmosphere will cause immediate sales growth and generally increase customers’ loyalty in the long term. The high loyalty level of customers leads to increased sales in the long term. Below are some practical tips that can help to create an emotional atmosphere in the store. Properly designed sales area: how it is arranged, the width of the aisles, the shelves’ height, whether there are gaps in the shelves, and whether it is convenient to view and to take the goods. Lighting: It creates the necessary emotional atmosphere and the motivation to buy, encourages to buy certain types of goods, as well as creates or destroys any price perception. Promotions: The buyer's impression of the products is first determined through their vision. Therefore beauty in the presentation of the store and goods can trigger an impulse to buy. Design and communication: should display the brand’s idea, and emphasizes the store's concept. Aroma marketing: Smells evoke associations and act on taste buds Service: friendly customer service always does the trick Check my article:
  3. Promotion is the important part to attract a new customers to the online retail store. What are the ways to do so?
  4. Productive work and the success of any business directly depends on the professionalism and quality of accounting. Observing the deadlines for filing reports, timely and correct payment of taxes, correct charges, timely posting of primary documentation, drawing up declarations are conditions that have a direct impact on the fruitful work of all departments of a company or enterprise. Accounting allows the company to avoid misunderstandings with the authorities and representatives of tax services and prevent issuing fines and possible penalties. Suppose we start to think about accounting companies. In that case, the most famous accountants are The Big Four - the nickname used to refer collectively to the four largest professional services networks in the world: Deloitte, Ernst & Young, KPMG, and PricewaterhouseCoopers. The four structures are often grouped for several reasons; they are each comparable in size relative to the rest of the market, both in terms of revenue and workforce. They are each considered equal in their ability to provide a broad scope of professional services. The Big Four offers audit, assurance, taxation, management consulting, actuarial, corporate finance, and legal services. These four networks conduct a significant majority of public companies’ audits and many audits of private companies. PricewaterhouseCoopers PricewaterhouseCoopers is a global professional services network of firms, operating as partnerships under the PwC brand. PwC firms work in 157 countries and 742 locations. The firm in its present form was created in 1998 by a merger between two accounting firms, Coopers & Lybrand and Price Waterhouse. Both firms had histories dating back to the 19th century. The trading name was shortened to PwC in September 2010 as part of a rebranding effort. Based in London, United Kingdom, PricewaterhouseCoopers International Limited is a coordinating entity for firms’ global network. It manages the worldwide brand and develops policies and initiatives to create a joint and coordinated approach in risk, quality, and strategy. It does not provide services to clients. Deloitte Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited, commonly referred to as Deloitte, is a multinational professional services network. Deloitte is one of the Big Four accounting organizations and the largest professional services network in the world by revenue and number of professionals, with headquarters in London, United Kingdom. Deloitte provides audit, consulting, financial advisory, risk advisory, tax, and legal services globally with approximately 312,000 professionals. KPMG KPMG International Limited (or simply KPMG) is a multinational professional services network and one of the Big Four accounting organizations. The name "KPMG" stands for "Klynveld Peat Marwick Goerdeler.” It was chosen when KMG (Klynveld Main Goerdeler) merged with Peat Marwick in 1987. Headquartered in Amstelveen, the Netherlands, although incorporated in the United Kingdom, KPMG is a network of firms in 147 countries, with over 219,000 employees and three services: financial audit, tax, and advisory. Its tax and advisory services are further divided into various service groups. EY Ernst & Young Global Limited, commonly known as Ernst & Young or simply EY, is a multinational professional services network with headquarters in London, United Kingdom. EY is one of the largest professional services networks in the world. It primarily provides assurance (which includes financial audit), tax, consulting, and advisory services. Like many of the larger accounting firms in recent years, EY has expanded into markets adjacent to accounting, including strategy, operations, HR, technology, and financial services consulting. EY operates as a network of member firms that are structured as separate legal entities in a partnership, which has close to 300,000 employees in over 700 offices in more than 150 countries around the world. The firm's current coalition was formed in 1989 by a merger of two accounting firms, Ernst & Whinney and Arthur Young & Co. It was named Ernst & Young until a rebranding campaign officially changed its name to EY in 2013, although this initialism was already used informally before its sanctioning adoption. BDO BDO or Binder Dijker Otte is an international network of public accounting, tax, consulting, and business advisory firms that perform professional services under the name of BDO. BDO has member firms in 167 countries, employs around 88,000 partners and staff in over 1,591 offices throughout the world, and is the fifth largest professional services network globally. Each BDO member firm is an independent legal entity in its own country. Grant Thornton Grant Thornton is the world's seventh-largest by revenue and sixth-largest by the number of employees professional services network of independent accounting and consulting member firms. They provide assurance, tax, and advisory services to privately held businesses, public interest, and public sector entities. Grant Thornton International Ltd. is incorporated in London, England, and has member firms operating in over 130 countries. RSM RSM International, branded RSM, is a multi-national network of accounting firms, forming an extensive accountancy professional services network. The member firms of RSM in over 120 countries are independent accounting and advisory firms, each of which practices in its own right and is unified as part of the network. Firms advise on a wide range of audit and assurance, consulting, tax, risk advisory, IFRS, restructuring, transaction, and business and financial advisory solutions. Crowe Crowe Global, commonly referred to as Crowe, is a multinational professional services network. It is the 8th largest global accounting network in the world. The network consists of more than 220 firms with over 42,000 employees in 130 countries. Crowe provides audit, tax, consulting, enterprise risk, and financial advisory services. Nexia Nexia International is a global network of independent accounting and consulting firms. The network consists of 258 firms, 747 offices, and 3442 partners in 122 countries. The network members deliver an extensive portfolio of audit, accountancy, tax, and advisory services. Baker Tilly Baker Tilly International is an accountancy and business advisory network represented by 126 member firms in 146 countries. Baker Tilly provides business advisory and accounting services with a strong focus on long term business-client relationships.
  5. Modern retail is working to create a positive emotional atmosphere in stores. We've collected a few tools to help your grocery shop or supermarket create a sales-boosting atmosphere. The buyer chooses a shopping place where he or she feels comfortable, pleasant, beautiful, convenient, joyful, fun, and also where he or she is appreciated, loved, and expected. All of these are about positive emotions. A good atmosphere will cause immediate sales growth and generally increase customers’ loyalty in the long term. The high loyalty level of customers leads to increased sales in the long term. Even a simple loyalty program, such as offering some percentage from each purchase for future shopping discounts, can positively influence customer retention. Listed below are some practical tips that can help to create an emotional atmosphere in the store. Properly designed sales area In the sales area, everything matters. It requires a competent approach from what equipment is used, how it is arranged, the width of the aisles, the shelves’ height, whether there are gaps in the shelves, and whether it is convenient to view and to take the goods. A well-designed store has answers to questions about which departments we meet and how we lead the customer. This is what the buyer doesn’t see but feels. This is about the buyer’s convenience and comfort while shopping. Categories that generate good mood and traffic are placed at the beginning of the customer journey, such as innovative products and gadgets. It can be fruits, vegetables, and flowers - they set the tone for freshness, decorate the store with bright colors, and influence positively. An area that creates positive emotions should be placed closer to the middle of the trading floor to create a flow. The product should be easily viewed and easily accessible; there should be enough space for several people to pass at the same time. In narrowed aisles, shelves work only at an eye level. When someone is rubbing against you all the time, it is inconvenient to look at, and even more so, to take goods placed at a feet level. Nevertheless, excessively wide aisles can impose different problems - you need to spend extra energy on moving around the sales area from one rack to another, which is also not very convenient. Avoiding the use of high shelves gives a better view of the sales area; customers see more goods; thus, they buy more and, as a result, increases the number of items on the receipt. Long aisles with spaces between the shelves compared to not having one gives more opportunity for the increase in turnover per square meter, as the buyer would stop at the ends of the shelves, and it would potentially bring higher chances of buyers taking more goods. A very cool tool is to add to the hall some promotional tables or short shelves that come up to the chest level, where the upper part is used as a table with an appealing layout. It is impossible to pass by such tables. This solution can be used even in small shops. Cross-goods sell well from these places when guests leave with additional purchases. Lighting Professionally set up lighting can bring a significant influence on the sales floor. It gains the attention of those customers just passing by and directs them to the right place, creates the necessary emotional atmosphere and the motivation to buy, encourages to buy certain types of goods, as well as creates or destroys any price perception. For instance, in grocery stores, using different color temperatures for different categories of goods can put these groups in a favorable light - meat - red, cheese - yellow, vegetables - juicy and bright. It leads to the emergence of a strong desire to buy all these delicious products. Which particular light to use depends on the concept and positioning of the store. Someone uses linear light and adds an accent light to increase sales of marginal product groups. Some stores use accent lighting throughout the sales area, darkening the aisles and illuminating only the shelf/showcase, using individual color temperature for each product group. Thus, complexity creates a unique atmosphere in which the goods are in the first place. When planning to open or rebrand a store, you should not save on lighting; since lighting significantly affects the store's desired perception by the buyer and, as a result, works to increase sales. Promotions This is a combination of creative promotional tables, price tags, various slides, ladders, baskets, and additional decorative elements. The buyer's impression of the products is first determined through their vision. Therefore beauty in the presentation of the store and goods can trigger an impulse to buy. Design and communication The design should be modern, displays the brand’s idea, and emphasizes the store's concept. Design works together with communication. A trendy global tool - storytelling - is also integrated into the design. With the help of design and communication, you can surprise, delight, inspire, teach, bring a smile, emotion, happiness. It's all about feelings. You always want to return to a beautiful, positively emotional store. Aroma marketing Smells evoke associations and act on taste buds. It smells of coffee - the feeling of urgency to buy a cup of coffee. The department with blankets smells of lavender - gives the imagination of a soft comfy sofa and inspires the purchase in anticipation of a warm, cozy evening. Now the bakery is situated near the entrance, and it lures into the store with its incredible smell of fresh-baked bakery and immediately stimulates one’s appetite. This brings one’s desire to want to buy even more. Service With the help of friendly service, you can easily fall in love with a customer. One crooked expression on the seller's face can destroy all the efforts made to attract customers. A store is a holistic space. It is not enough to use only one tool for creating a positive emotional atmosphere; several tools need to be used in different combinations and not to lose sight of any limitations. It is important to remember that human brains tend to focus on the negative side. If the client does not like one thing, he or she will remember those specific details and give a general negative impression to the entire store. ,
  6. Very often, small and medium businesses need financing. Ether it is the replenishment of working capital when there are cash flow gaps - you have not received payment for bills issued to consumers, but you need to pay your bills. Or you decided, for example, to buy new equipment to take your business to a new level. In other words, you need to find investment for development. For years banks took the role of providing loans for businesses, but nowadays, many other online platforms can offer loans to businesses. Here we collect the list of most known loan platforms. Accion Accion is an international nonprofit dedicated to serving entrepreneurs, business owners, and communities. Founded as a community development initiative serving the poor in Venezuela, Accion is known as a pioneer in microfinance and fintech impact investing. The organization works across Latin America and the Caribbean, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia. Kiva Kiva is a nonprofit organization headquartered in California, USA, with offices in Bangkok, Nairobi, Portland, and staff worldwide. The service collects money through crowdfunding loans. It allows people to lend money via the Internet to low-income entrepreneurs and students in 77 countries. On Deck On Deck is a global online small business lending company from the United States. It has offices in the USA, Canada, and Australia. Enova Enova is a USA based provider of online financial services to non-prime consumers and small businesses. The company offers access to credits powered by its advanced analytics, innovative technology, and online platform and services. It also delivers on-demand decision-making technology and real-time predictive analytics services to clients. Lidya Lidya is a USA holding financial institution that provides credit and finance access across a frontier and emerging markets. The company works in five countries: the USA, Portugal, Nigeria, Poland, and the Czech Republic. The platform offers small and medium-sized businesses unsecured loans of between $500 and $15,000. To manage credit risk, Lidya uses close to 100 data points to evaluate companies, build a credit score unique to each business and can issue loans in 24 hours or less. GroFin GroFin is headquartered in Mauritius and provides small and medium business finance and business loans across 14 countries in Africa & the Middle East. The platform helps entrepreneurs succeed by providing them with business loans and business support (expert advice and continuous guidance) to grow their businesses. Lendio Lendio is a marketplace providing loans for small businesses in the U.S. Small business owners utilize Lendio's free online service to find financing by browsing multiple loan products from a network of lenders. Fundbox Fundbox is a fintech company based in the USA. The service uses big data analytics, engineering, and predictive modeling to optimize cash flow for small businesses and freelancers with outstanding invoices. Fundera Fundera helps U.S.-based small businesses find financing. It provides advice and comparison technology to help business owners easily identify their best-fit financial products and, ultimately, make better business decisions.
  7. Running a small business is not an easy task. Every day small and medium business owners face many challenges, and they need to make decisions that influence their development. We collect some information resources that may help merchants to make their decisions more efficiently. Small Business Trends Small Business Trends review tech products, cover small business news and interview movers and shakers. The site contains over 20,000 pages focused on tips, trends, and answers for practical questions. It is a hub of more than two million entrepreneurs, business owners, influencers, and experts. The company office is in Florida, USA. Fit Small Business Fit Small Business is an advanced digital resource for small business owners. It provides comprehensive and actionable content for merchants to succeed. Small business owners are enthusiastic and driven about what they do, and Fit Small Business's mission is to deliver the best answers to their questions. Forbes One of the oldest (more than 100 years) and well known American resource of business information, Forbes has a chapter on its website dedicated to small and medium businesses. They publish news, recommendations, reviews that may potentially benefit small business owners. The Balance Small Business The Balance Small Business provides practical advice on entrepreneurship and management covering personal finance, career, and small business topics. The website content is divided into four big categories: starting your business, operations, law and taxes, and management. Merchant Maverick Merchant Maverick’s mission is “Small business made easy.” There are combinations of reviewing and comparing software for small businesses with informative articles on business, technology, marketing, and other industries. The website contains much in-depth research in 20 different areas, including point of sale systems, credit card processing, business loans, credit cards, finance, accounting, eCommerce, etc. Business.com Business.com contains a lot of mission advice, tips, and resources to help people grow their business. The website also has a community of business owners, marketers, and sales experts to help through first-hand advice and engaging discussion. Business News Daily Business News Daily provides insights and advice from experts, and actionable knowledge business owners can use to make the everyday decisions needed to start and grow their businesses. Business.org Business.org provides research, product reviews, and expert recommendations for small- to mid-size businesses to help them choose the right tools and services for growing. All content is divided into sections: Start, Grow, Financing, Accounting, Inventory, and others.
  8. ERP - Enterprise Resource Planning, software that allows small businesses to replace the various information systems, programs, and databases used in the enterprise and start using a single database in an ERP system. ERP software enables the use of essential business functions, such as order processing, production control, and financing. By using one technology platform and enterprise-wide database, businesses can integrate operations and achieve a range of economic, operational, and production advantages. Implementing an ERP system demands careful planning to make the targeted benefits and minimize the risk of project failure. The advantage of ERP software is that it provides various departments of your company with up-to-date information about its activities. In many small businesses, each unit has its information system, creating databases that other groups cannot access or share data. For example, when an enterprise processes a customer's order, various departments, such as sales, production, and shipment, must re-enter and seek information about inventory levels, lead times, and customer requirements. With ERP, all relevant data is available to these departments, eliminating the need to re-enter data, reducing the risk of errors, increasing productivity, and speeding up order execution time. Having consistent data improves the speed and quality of business decisions. Your management team can distinguish any potential production bottlenecks that may affect delivery time or productivity levels. Financial managers receive an immediate, up-to-date picture of orders, work in progress, and inventory to improve business planning. Production planning staff can effectively manage inventory levels according to requests and delivery schedules. HR managers can determine the need for recruitment or redeployment according to changing business needs. Managers have an overall picture of their activities to enable them to make productive investment and resource allocation decisions and respond quickly to changes in business opportunities. SAP Business One SAP Business One is an ERP for small and medium-sized enterprises that the German company SAP SE sells. As an ERP solution, it aims to automate essential business functions in financials, operations, and human resources. SAP Business One is arranged into 15 functional modules, covering the typical features in a business organization. Each module responsible for specific business tasks on its own but is linked to the other modules where applicable. NetSuite NetSuite from Oracle helps manage mission-critical processes, allowing businesses to react to new market opportunities. NetSuite ERP gives companies visibility and control of their business at financials, supply chain management, billing, and more. NetSuite ERP supports back-office operations, including financial, human resources, procurement, orders, inventory, shipping, and billing. Dynamics GP Microsoft Dynamics GP is an ERP software package marketed in North and South America, UK and Ireland, the Middle East, Singapore, Australia, and New Zealand. It is used in many additional countries with partner supported localizations. Acumatica ERP Acumatica's Cloud ERP lets you manage your business, review all customer interactions, and obtain proactive business reports and insights from a web-enabled device. Acumatica headquarters is in the USA and other offices located throughout North America, Europe, and Asia. Odoo Odoo is an ERP that includes CRM, e-commerce, billing, accounting, manufacturing, warehouse, project management, and inventory management. There is a community version as Open Source, and also a proprietary "Enterprise" version, which has extra in North America (USA, Mexico), Europe (Luxemburg), and Asia (UAE, India and Hong Kong). Sage X3 Sage X3 is an enterprise resource planning product developed by Sage Group aimed at established businesses. Automation can be implemented between processes in ERP, such as sales and financial management, to reduce the manual time spent on data entry and tedious communication among departments. Zoho Zoho is not technically ERP but called a Business Operating System – a collection of business processes used in many companies predominantly small to medium businesses. Zoho Corporation is an Indian software development company. Scoro Scoro is an all-in-one business management software that combines project management with time and team management, sales, billing, and professional services automation. The company has offices in London, New York, Tallinn, Riga, and Vilnius.

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