Here’s the thing. Businesses need to learn, grow, adapt, and do their best to see what’s coming at them. Your customers change. Your market changes. The way developers like Ping! Development build applications changes. As we look forward to new opportunities in 2019, we see that the year and the expected changes are not in a vacuum. They’ve been in the works for years. Keeping an eye on these trends is part of how we deliver a great solution for our clients. So, what do we see coming in 2019?
A digital product is online software that delivers a product or service via a web browser or smartphone app. Ping! Development’s Digital Product Development service offers our clients the ability to generate new revenue streams with these products. While the revenue models for digital products vary, the most common model is the subscription-based plan. Your company may be sitting on this opportunity right now with its existing products and software.
When building an ecommerce site, there's a lot of nuances that need to be taken into account, from what to charge for shipping (and how to determine the fees you pass on to the customer) to charging for sales tax. Collection of sales tax is one item that can't be ignored - unless you're happy to pay large sums in monetary penalties because you didn't collect and/or pay enough. This week, we'll cover a bit about sales tax considerations when launching an Arizona-based ecommerce business.
As you’ve already seen, I’m building more than just a consulting business and I’ve mentioned a few times that marketing a product is very different from marketing services. Since July, I’ve been working on creating a new digital product and there’s been a lot of lessons along the way. Here’s a few tips about leveraging the network you’ve built for more than just referrals.
When it comes to doing business, there are a ton of tools to help get the job done. And it seems like every week there’s something new trying to wiggle it’s way into my workflow. Some of them make the cut and others get kicked to the curb. Here’s the tools I use most (meaning, daily) to help me do, create, and manage my business and products.
With the myriad of blogs that I’ve written for the site, I sometimes struggle with consistent topics. By that, I mean I’m a developer, but many blogs blur the line between product development, marketing, Web design, and networking. This can lead to confusion about exactly what we do, which has brought me to this: consistency is key.
We all work hard on our business, but do we all keep an eye on the reputation of our business in the community? When you're a very small or micro-business, adding that "one more thing" can be next to impossible, but it doesn't have to be.
For the last few months, I've been pushing myself to be more active. Since moving last Fall, it's been harder to get out and do the fun activities I love because trails aren't as close and riding along the valley canals is boring. I've had different people try to push me to try different things, like CrossFit (or some kind of functional mobility exercise), but it wasn't the same to me. I love to engage my mind in everything and if the activity isn't stimulating for whatever reason, the motivation to keep doing it doesn't follow. How did I get around this?
This is one of those odd 5th Mondays where I don't need to follow a specific editorial calendar. Since this week (almost) marks halfway through the year, I decided to reflect a bit on how I've stuck with my plan to get one blog out every week so far this year and what you can do with your own site to help.
The past few months have been hectic (the good kind), but, now that I'm able to breathe a bit, I get reminded that I need to do things besides just work. I've probably said it a few times in the past, but when you get down in your work it's easy to forget. Last month, I learned I was nominated and named a finalist in the Phoenix Business Journal's Top Tech Exec awards. With a project winding down and a free weekend, I decided it would be a good time to get out and reflect a bit.
Plenty of things can change in a week and I find it easy to forget I need to do things besides work when deadlines are looming, but I made sure to take time out for some important events last week. Thanks to some great events that carried celebration through the weekend, I hit the ground running on Monday.
Getting an ecommerce site up and running is anything but a small feat. There's products information, descriptions and photos, pricing considerations, not to mention the typical stuff you need for a Web site (policies, company profile, awesome landing page). It's easy to get caught up in the excitement of launching and forget to plan for the things that come after.
Well, maybe not literally, but I started to really focus on getting things done after a great presentation by Nicole Spracale, a management consultant and executive coach I met during my involvement at the Tempe Chamber. The presentation was about time management and productivity and, at the time, I was struggling to get everything done because so much was happening at once. After the presentation, I started looking for a to-do list manager that worked for me.
Marketing products and marketing services each require two very different approaches. In the former, your customers get something tangible that they can hold in their hands and evaluate quantitatively. The latter is more subjective and your customers must rely on qualitative criteria to determine if they will give you a good or bad review. When it comes to services, people buy from people they like. Seeing your face plastered on a billboard or in an ad on a Web site, email, or newspaper isn't going to have as much sway with them. Which brings me to this headline and the fact that the first rule is to just show up.
I've been getting a lot of questions about CRM (Customer Relationship Management) applications lately and, not having found the right solution for myself just yet, I wanted to pass on some ways to make it easier to keep up with projects and opportunities. It seems like most of the CRMs that are available are are cost-prohibitive for small businesses. It is possible to bring together a number of different services and keep the costs down, but my goal here is to find a CRM which is both easy to use and offers the tools available to enterprise users, but is still affordable to the solo consultant or small business.
Since founding Sol Minion Development, I've been to dozens of networking events. Each time, the same question came up: "So, what do you do?" There's plenty of ways to answer this question and plenty of techniques. I've tried several of them, but it's hard to define what we do succinctly. After a little over two years and using the "Twitter Approach", I whittled it down: We solve business challenges using software. The challenges could be just about anything, from marketing to operations to customer service, but it's all solved in some way by software. So, what do you do?
Here are three examples of challenges faced by many businesses that we can help overcome.