The Future of Online Independent Businesses

From the Independent Business Org’s reviews and surveys for 2015 it looks like the future is very promising yet as any small independent business lies the challenges.

With the recent numbers of low unemployment paving the way for hiring comes still the lack of funding to sustain operations. Coupled with that is the tough competition online specifically on online book selling where the big online giants eats you up alive by selling lower than what publishers or distributors sell new books for example.

Sometimes, one may wonder how can they do that but the word “BIG” comes with the saying meaning they have the promotional expense funding to utilize so who cares. What’s really funny is with the so called giants comes the big consignors also dropping down prices favoring the atmosphere and if they can sell even new books for $0.01 they will.

I recently had a town hall discussion on our small shop and I raised the question as any independent bookseller would. “If your shopping online e.g. books and your browsing on description and price what do you normally look for and what’s important?”

The brave souls then responded, “We’ve even consider buying acceptable book conditions as long as they are the cheapest price in there” So as gracious as I want to feel, what can I say as for all these years our “Affordable” wasn’t cheap as cheap but “quality” comes with it.

So my take on this as we prepare for Book Expo America through the American Booksellers Association initiatives on May 2016 at McCormick Place in Chicago is it’s time to re-express what book selling and book lovers is about. Quality, experience, joy and great service should still be jointly capitulated on our initiatives and expressions and continue to educate the retail and online consumer what it’s all about.

After all 3 out of 10 online cheapest price sales comes with either the return or negative feedback and guess what? Today even feedback are no longer are deterrent as the culprits invade the cheapest price market on book selling.

The role of small business entrepreneurs is to emphasize reconciliation

It’s about time for reconciliation. The small business owner has been heard by the politicians and faith has prevailed in all angles and extremes.  In the old days, it was telephone banking then came the town hall meets and now there is a new age of technology using the internet as the model of communication.

From letter writing to emails then now to blogging and social networking through the years, our role now is promote “reconciliation”.  Gone are the days that we only had to express freedom on expression and write about complaints and sentiments, it is now about supporting the cause.  Just as any struggling no income, disabled individual today, all we have is the magic world of the internet and it’s vast technologies.    So it is very important to pat our officials on the back, thank our president of change for the message and our legislators for taking the steps to improve our lives.

For in the world of blogging for example, it is not merely driven by self-interest as we write and express our thoughts, our minds and with what is on our spirit.  Christian or not, the action between faith and love must prevail in helping heal the wounds that the global world needs.  And by engaging with this message, we are creating the bottom line of the hard times so we can move on now towards global prosperity.

Yes, there is a dileanation between church and the system but as small entrepreneurs we can still make that connection.  Yes, we can, we will prevail and then a miracle towards the healing of the markets will begin.  As a small nobody affected by this crisis, I call on the investing community that the battle is over.  Now is the time to heal, be together and inspire each other for the change we need.

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The Future of the internet towards human nature

 

The future has began with the digital technology age today.  From video-cams, landlines, instant messaging and reading, the internet has transformed a new way of life.

With online virtual communities and social networking, one does not need to travel thousands of miles to meet and learn about society and culture.

Expressing emotions and ideas are ways to create  a real sense of healing especially when humans go through difficult times in their lives.  Understanding human ordeals is hard especially if we have never experienced the same hardships and situations.

It is no longer assumptions towards realities and analyzing trends but listening to people.  On the other end, the listener has to have the compassion and sentiment to elicit a more positibe attitude.

This is not just about the business aspects of creating niche but also sharing personal experiences over life.  The key is simply accepting what is present and then move on towards a new beginning. This is the real message depicted on the ideology behind why we have constantly promoted the online virtual community.

Affordable Books with Affordable Shirts

The popularity of Affordable Books had gone wild lately expanding to Affordable Shirts. In today’s economic disgust affordability seems to be the name of the game.

Is this economic reality really happening in America?

Sometimes,  people are still asking me if the sign of the times are real or are they just experiencing a sudden dream or

nightmare.   Unfortunately, all I can say is yes this is what is the reality is going on.     Even in major cities, businesses

are closing their doors from left to right.      Either it be a gasoline station, car washing, boutique, even food chains and

discount store chains that a month ago was still bustling with people and customers.   Suddenly, they seemed to be  closed,

abandoned, and some at least have signs saying they are closed for business.    This is why people seem to be on a deep

paranoia if this was real.    At least, there are good signs though when the businesses with loyal customers based and those

online brick and stores brands and independents are able to hang on. This means persistence, stability and survival of

the fittest.      Only days after the new hardworking 44th President of the United States which is the first high tech pres. has

been working almost night and day.     As he said it will get worst then better which is the best way to face the reality of

 what has happen with the US Economy and now that the UK has finally admitted to be on the bandwagon of recession.    This 

is the time that we have to be solid and compassionate towards each other.  And when hope for the best of the outcome as

a nation yes we can.

Bookselling now another victim of the Recession

Some stories of friends have great similarity to ours and we all agreed that we are not recession proof. 

In the few years, the internet giants of the books industries have made very good mechanisms of maintaining, selecting

and dropping small brick and mortar home based retailers.   Without the big guys even having their own masssive inventory stocks,

the small guys are the ones buying and resselling, the develop quality and shipping standards, make money through services,

commissions and fees and most of all the consumer’s payment which they use as cash flow as they have  scheduled payment

after a week, two weeks or even a month after finally paying the small guys.    In the meantime the small guy only has two days

from receipt of order to deliver to the customer in good quality and fastest way.

So it is still the samll guys who get ding, scolded or even expelled if these rules are not followed of if the customer complaints.

So in turn the consumer does not want to buy a book online sometimes as they are not sure if the book ever get on time.

Change was the election fever, online technology is the bail-out

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A few weeks before the inauguration of the 44th President Barack Obama of the United States change has been the epitome

yet online technology and the way economics run might finally be the real way out of the financial crisis so deep globally

nowadays.     With the Feds infusing money into the system the traditional way, people are stagerring to sell their checrished

possessions online just to survive.  Maybe, what is needed is more involvement of the home based brick and mortar powered

small businesses who knows how to survive a dollar or a penny a day without cash flow.

After all this time, they finally ADMIT RECESSION?

Boy o boy, don’t you love capitalism at it’s best. Now suddenly CEO’s willing to take $1.00 as annual salary without flying on private jets while the collectors jump on sucking to buy more names for them to call and threaten.

I’m sorry what this new incoming administration needs are veteran small business entrepreneurs who knows how to juggle with a negative balance sheet and turn it around. Where do you find them? Why not try the minority small business main streets who knows what it is to live once a day, sometimes line up for free food and work two jobs while having a 100 degree fever. Then perhaps something will happen and this deepest of the deepest depression maybe fix slowly but surely.

Hello, this is the sign of the times.  This is no longer graduates of the prestigious schools and white collar executives with corrupt politics but this is now the time for people with disabilities, under privileged class who have good breeding, culture and education and ethics to be fair yet survive.

But as they say it is about the inner circle again on the campaign headquarters who were there even if they were on the other side. Who cares about party affiliation, it is about scratching backs again but then were set to the dumps again.

Wake up America. Dump the ego…….Go back to the very basic ideals of the american dream and finally express the so called “change” by naming the unheard names in the circles who really have the qualifications to do the job, to be a survivor and the only way is to find the people had suffer from the very same system it had created.

Then and only then will healing and real people start to have the real solutions.  It is very tempting yes but remember it only takes a 100 days to make the first impressions and then a new president can be doomed and or be great.

Merchandising Trends Aggressive on Christmas in October?

Columbus Day, Oct. 8 most of the Westfield stores in the Northern California area had some Halloween stuff. However, they had more Christmas decors and trees coming out of their shelves.  Toys, huge, huge sale prices from 20 to 70% off can be found at Walmart, Even Internet Shopping sites are showcasing some of the sellers geared toward gift giving and the likes,.  Looks like if we can adjust  X’mas to be earlier in Octgober we would.

I think the idea is get to make wallets open so people can start spending.   A typical Sunday afternoon would be foods, movies, games, and shopping. Today, it’s more  foods, either a movie or a game only, window shopping, or grocery shopping. The shopping even though tempting is kinda hard when you think of the credit card bills and collectors.

In the late 80’s I remember doing hallmark greeting cards made from special natural paper. We also created an entire product line concept that will go with it like notebooks, journals, pen holders making a collection. Yet we also had to manufacturer products geared towards people’s income bracket.

I think today is the best time to create products that can be ordinary basic things that we use on the daily basis and add some kind of color, decor, art value so we won’t be ashamed in wrapping them up to give as presents for the holidays. 

 Any thoughts out there?