5 Tips for A Creative Retail Branding and Design Strategy

Quality retail branding is meant to connect businesses with customers in a way that builds trust and desire in the consumer for the brand and their product. Branding has been around since ancient times (from Roman columns to Chinese stamps), but modern commercial branding is a new phenomenon. People are more involved with brands than ever, locally and globally, to the point where two golden arches are immediately recognizable by almost everyone around the world, without any words in the picture.

In the complex world of retail, which is composed of multiple elements and disciplines, a consumer can see connections, or a lack of connections, between all the different aspects of retail at a glance. And that is where design comes in. Retail branding and design aims to create a harmonious and holistic schema out of all of the elements of retail, from personnel to product presentation. Design is not just about looks, but about function. Without a good branding and design strategy, retail stores are a mishmash of unrelated ideas that can confuse and put off potential customers.

Design your layout based on traffic flow:

When customers enter the store, where do they look? Which way do they go? Position your best products in areas where customers are more likely to notice them. Pedestrian traffic is often influenced by vehicular traffic. That is, in areas where people drive on the right side of the road, in-store traffic patterns tend to move in a clockwise pattern. Use these patterns to your advantage.

Create a focal point in your visual displays:

Don’t just bring attention to anything and everything in the store, but draw customers in by featuring one item prominent, whether that’s in a window display or in the middle of your store. Strategically position lights and other items to point to your featured product and avoid distracting customers by putting equal weight on too many items at once.

Make window effects:

Windows make small spaces look larger and more inviting. Creating windows in the walls separating two rooms can give the entire building a more airy ambience, or creating visual illusions of windows such as white panels or drapes around mirrors, can also create a window effect, increasing the feeling of light and movement, especially if you are in a small space.

Avoid clutter:

Clutter feels noisy and uncomfortable for customers. Don’t overload your customer’s visual circuits with signs and patterns and displays galore. Instead, use neutral colors for larger items and accent the space with smaller items with brighter colors, and do not place your merchandise too closely together.

Use lighting to your advantage:

Lighting is important in any shop, and especially so in small corners. Make sure that your store is well lit, or else you will not be making good use of your space – customers don’t usually prefer to wander into dark, shadowy areas, so any merchandise displayed there will not receive a fair consideration. Use a combination of different lights to keep the space illuminated and to add variety and interest to the space.

Discover How To Boost Trade With E-Commerce Business 2011 Trends

The e-commerce business 2011 trends have moved on significantly from last year. As technology and consumer habits are constantly evolving, the trends also change. If you want to ensure that your business stays ahead of the competition, and goes from strength to strength, it is important to keep up to date with the latest marketing concepts. Although the internet is still at the forefront of advertising in terms of e-commerce, there are new tools, or changes to old tools, that you should be aware of.

More institutions and businesses now take advantage of Twitter. Although the service has been around for a couple of years, it is only in the last twelve months then it has become a must have tool in the arsenal of online marketers. No matter what service or product you offer through your website, Twitter should form an important component of your advertising campaign, it is a simple way to reach out to a massive audience.

Social media continues to be a very useful concept. If you were to integrate certain applications into your portal, you can keep your potential market informed of the latest events. This year, social media is playing a much more important role in the strategies of online marketing campaigns. What's more, social networking is an extremely low-cost activity, this is appealing to both established firms and new startups. You can boost turnover while keeping the advertising budget low.

In these times of a weak economy, more consumers think carefully about price. You can use social media to highlight how affordable your services or products are, and make changes to stay competitive through the year.

Your e-commerce business should make full use of video to reach out to the public. It can now be said that the majority of homes in the country have access to fast broadband connections. Those portals on which videos can be hosted continue to draw in millions of viewers each day. You can use this trend to capture new customers, although you will need to ensure that you upload videos that are informative, interesting, and fun.

It is fundamental to stay on top of the latest search engine optimization (SEO) concepts and techniques. This is a topic that is constantly evolving; the algorithms used by the search engines are not the same today as they were this time last year. If you have not updated your keywords and other dynamics there is every chance your pages would've dropped in ranking over time.

Email marketing still has a place in today's world of e-commerce, but sending out mundane monotonous emails is of no use today. You need to create personalized emails that are more likely to generate an interest in the minds of potential customers. Consider what terminology and images can help to arouse curiosity.

To be successful in e-commerce business today requires a broad understanding of the habits and trends of the market. Social media and personal approaches are the best way of ensuring continuous profit in the months ahead.

FAQs About Motorcycle Insurance

Motorcycle insurance is one of the biggest costs involved in riding your motorcycle. Whether your ride is a scooter or a sports bike it’s best to get the best value insurance policy that covers everything you need.

What determines the cost of motorcycle insurance

Your personal details

In the insurance business, age is a common determinant for risk. Male riders under 25 are considered the most likely to file claim, whereas female and older riders are more likely to receive lower premiums. Occupation may also come into play in factoring premiums, depending on whether the coverage compensates you for time missed at work.

Where you live

A big influence on the cost of your car insurance is where you live. The chance of your car being broken into or stolen is a key concern for the insurer. More urban areas traditionally facing greater risk of theft and therefore tend to be more expensive than countryside locations.

The type of bike you own

The type of bike you own can greatly affect your insurance premium. Naturally, a more expensive bike will cost an insurer more to fix or replace. Motorbikes with better engines and faster speeds will represent a greater risk for collision as well as damage caused by an accident.

Older model bikes may require more maintenance and difficulty securing repair parts. For motorbikes older than 20 years, it would be wise to seek an insurer that specialises in classic bikes and cars.

Who else will be riding the bike

Adding another rider to the policy will affect the overall cost. Adding an experienced motorist will generally lower your premium. Conversely, adding a younger individual may escalate costs.

As each insurance company weighs these factors differently, you will find fluctuations in the prices you are quoted. Cheaper rates most likely find your situation more amenable to their particular risk formula.

Usage of the bike

The more often you ride your bike, the more likely you will be involved in an accident. Moreover, bikes that are used for commuting represent a greater risk than those ridden for pleasure, due to the difference in traffic. Residents living in high traffic postcodes may also experience higher insurance costs.

Storage and security measures

Theft represents another concern for insurance companies when calculating premiums. Alarms or anti-theft devices such as an immobiliser, bike lock, or ground anchor can mitigate this risk. In some cases, an insurer might recommend a specific brand or anti-theft device to their consumers.

Parking your bike in a garage can further alleviate theft concerns. Insurance companies will also factor in the crime rate in your postcode before settling on a quote.

Previous claims or convictions

Riders who have made previous claims or suffered motoring convictions present a greater risk to insurers. If you fall into one of these categories, it may be best to seek a company that specialises in insuring convicted riders

Your excess

The excess is the amount of any claim that your insurer will expect you to cover. For example, your riding your bike and you have an accident your bike now needs repairs worth £1000 and your excess is £100, you’ll have to pay £100 and your insurer will pay the remainder.

The more cost you are willing to absorb, the lower your premium. Having a high excess is ideal for riders who travel infrequently or on less busy roads. Those who commute daily may want a lower excess in order to file a claim for minor accidents. This, in turn, will elevate the cost of insurance.

No Claims Discount

Save up your no claims discount by avoiding making small claims upon your policy. After a set number of years, 4 or 5 typically, you’ll often be offered the option to pay an additional small premium to protect your no claims bonus. This can prove very helpful if you subsequently end up having an accident.

Advanced driving skills

By taking an advanced driving course you may also be able to reduce your premiums. The Institute for Advanced Motorists and the Royal Society for Prevention of Accidents each offer membership which provides you with discounts for both the cost of driving courses and your car insurance premiums. Two key variables NOT within the policyholder’s control

Consolidating policies

By insuring a number of vehicles with the same insurer, or by trying to take out home and life insurance through your car insurer, you may be able to secure a ‘bulk buy’ discount.

One final piece of advice

A large percentage of insurance is now sold on the Internet. That’s because it’s convenient and cheap. Many insurers now give a further 10%-15% discount if you buy online.

Level of cover

Third party

This covers the policy holder against damage to a third party’s property or to the third party themselves. Third party only bike insurance cover is usually a cheap motorcycle insurance policy compared to Third Party Fire and Theft or Comprehensive motorcycle insurance.

For example, if you have an accident with another vehicle and it is your fault then the Third Party Only policy will pay for the repair to that other vehicle, and will pay for any medical claims or injuries suffered by the occupant(s) of the other vehicle and your pillion rider. A Third Party Only bike insurance policy will not pay for the costs of repairing your own vehicle nor will it pay anything toward your medical expenses if you are injured. In addition, if your vehicle is stolen or is set on fire, a Third Party Only policy will not make any payment toward the theft or repair of the vehicle.

Third Party Fire & Theft

This is exactly the same as the Third Party Only motorcycle insurance policy, set out above, however a Third Party Fire and Theft UK motorcycle policy will pay out in the event that your vehicle is stolen or is set on fire.

Fully Comprehensive

A Fully comprehensive UK motorcycle insurance policy will pay-out for third party damages and injuries, will pay-out in the event of your vehicle being stolen or set on fire, and will also pay for any damage to your own motorcycle regardless of whose fault the accident was.

Controlling Mold Without Toxic Chemicals

Mold can grow anywhere there are damp conditions – from a windowsill to a
bathroom, to a whole house. While the health effects of most common molds are minimal, the chemicals we commonly use to remove the unsightly growth can harm our health. Mold cleaners can contain toxic chemicals such as pentachorophenol, which can be harmful through skin absorption or inhalation, and formaldehyde, which can cause cancer as well as irritate eyes, throat, skin, and lungs. Many mold cleaners carry the "DANGER" warning label and state that they should be used only in a well-ventilated area (next time you want to clean mold from your shower, look around for the ventilation …)

Fortunately, there are ways to clean and even prevent mold that are natural and safe
for you and your family.

Mold is a living organism that needs certain conditions to stay alive. A moist, dark,
environment with little moving air is perfect. Mold just can not live in an environment
that is dry, light, or breezy. The solution to any mold problem of any kind is to
introduce heat (to dry the moisture), light, or moving air (such as from a fan).

I used to live in an old house in a forest, next to a creek, in an area that has a lot of
rainfall in the winter. One year was particularly cold and rainy and so to conserve
heat, I closed the door on my extra bedroom, which contained books and research
papers, a bed, and out-of-season clothing. By the end of winter, there was so much
mold in that room that was was literally growing on my clothing. My cotton espadrille
shoes and cloth-covered binders were covered with blue fuzz. What to do? Mold was
covering literally everything!

In my situation, I opted to use heat. I put a portable space heater in the room and
closed the door. After several hours I peeked in and steam was rising. It was like a
sauna. After twenty-four hours, however, all was bone dry and I was able to brush
visible mold (now a dry powder) from walls, clothing, and other surfaces. The moral
of the story: if you live in a damp environment that does not get much sun, make
sure your heat circulates completely around the house, and even though it may take
more energy, it's needed to keep your home dry and safe. Mold can do damage to
material possession and human health, so its better to stay warm and dry.

If you have just a small area of ​​mold, use a hand-held dryer to dry it up in just a few
minutes.

You can prevent mold from growing by keeping areas dry. Find the source of
moisture and control it. Mold in an undersink cabinet, for example, may require
fixing leaky pipes. Controlling mold in a bathroom may involve installing a small
space heater to run after a shower to dry out the room, or using a fan for the same
purpose. No moisture – no mold.

In a closet, hang garments with space between them to allow for air-flow and install
a small light, both to dispel darkness and provide a little heat. If you live in a very
humid area, a dehumidifier may be necessary.

To remove mold from shower tile or other hard surface, mix borax and water, or
vinegar and water, in a spray bottle. Spray it on and the mold wipes right off. Borax
inhibits mold growth, so wash down the walls in your bathroom with a borax
solution and just leave it on, or sprinkle borax in damp cabinets under the sink. If
you need something stronger to remove stubborn mold, use hydrogen peroxide.

Steam cleaners – which clean, sanitize, and deodorize using only hot water – also
work great on mold. You can purchase small hand-held steam cleaners in the
housewares department of discount stores for about $ 50 or larger units on the
Internet.

Read more about controlling mold without toxic chemicals in my new book Home
Safe Home, at http://www.dld123.com/homesafehome.html .