Monday, December 10, 2012

Selling to the Vendors

Selling to vendors is different from selling to general public customers. Vendors usually do not pay any attention to the presentation of products but are more concerned about the cost, quality and selling potential of products.

Listed below are some measures which will help you in your business of selling to the vendors:

Attend Trade Shows and Exhibitions
You should attend all trade shows and exhibitions in your area and also try to visit important events at the national and international level. Such events provide you with a chance of meeting with the vendors concerned with your business. The vendors are always trying to find new products and suppliers and thus you will have an opportunity to present your products, their salient features, pricing, shipment details, etc. You are able to find some new buyers of your products at these trade shows.

Offer Incentives
The vendors who are ready to start buying your products should be given some incentives. Some discount or incentive should be provided for starting new business and after a few months when sales figures have increased and the relationship with the vendor is established, you can offer further incentives. With these incentives the vendors will be able to increase his margin of profits and the consumers of his products will benefit from reduced prices. This will increase his sales and subsequently you will gain more profits.

Offer Better Products
Provide the vendors with comparisons of their existing products with your products and demonstrate the differences between the quality, cost, and other beneficial features of your products. If you offer similar or better products at little lower or comparable rates, the vendors will be more inclined to buy from you.

Provide Preferential Treatment
The vendors who are buying your products regularly and in large numbers should be preferred over others by offering discounted rates. They should also be given exclusive rights for some new products which the other vendors are not able to sell. These measures will result in more profits for the vendors and you will develop close business relations with them.

Offer No Risk Deal to the Vendor
You can offer your products to the vendors with no upfront payment. According to the deal the products will be displayed and sold, the payment is only made when the product sells and you will remove those products which are not being sold without any cost or expenses for the vendor. This sort of arrangement benefits the vendor with no risk of any monetary loss.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Do You Know Enough About the Employer Identification Number (EIN)?

Employer Identification Number (EIN) which is also known as Taxpayer Identification Number is used by the United States Department of Labor and the Internal Revenue Service for the purpose of identification and tax collection from all kinds of existing businesses and vendors. The EIN is a nine digit sequence which is specifically created for each business or vendor.

Vendor Accounts

Many business institutions and retailers purchase various products and services from vendors. Most of these vendors have contracts for regularly providing their products and services on a recurring basis. The account departments of the purchasing businesses usually create vendor accounts for paying the vendors for the purchases. The EIN of the vendor is used to set up the exclusive account and to identify all the deliveries of products and payments related to that specific vendor. The software of the accounts identifies the vendor through his EIN and can also be used to make year-end statements of accounts easily.

Purchasing from Wholesalers or Distributors

Small businesses including vendors operate their businesses by purchasing products from the wholesalers at cheaper rates and then selling them to customers at a profit. The EIN is a requirement for making wholesale purchases from wholesalers or wholesale distributors. Government agencies and departments use the EIN to verify the legal standing and the accuracy of tax returns filed by that particular business or vendor.  

Your Employer Identification Number (EIN)

When you are going to start a new business, you can apply for a new Employer Identification Number (EIN) at the website of the US Internal Revenue Service by filling out the EIN form. Another method of getting the EIN is by requesting a paper form through mail which can be filled and returned to the local IRS office.
 If you are already operating a business and do not know your EIN, it can be located by contacting the IRS office and making a request for a copy of EIN.

When EIN is Not Required

There are some business conditions where the EIN is not needed. If the vendor is operating the business outside the United States of America, he is not legally bound to obtain an EIN. A few other situations where Employer Identification Number is not required include businesses which make purchases through petty cash, accounts between the university and the students, etc. 

Friday, December 7, 2012

How to Maintain Flea Market Accounts

Your business at the flea market is legally bound to pay all applicable taxes at the town, state, and the federal levels. You should maintain the business accounts by a simple accounting system so that you remain aware about the profit or loss. The account will also be helpful for determining the applicable taxes. Some flea markets charge a percentage of total sales from the flea market vendors; proper and exact accounts will be useful for this purpose. In order to maintain the accounts of your business at the flea market, a few useful tips are listed below: 
  •             You must keep the record of all purchases along with the sales receipts for the items purchased. For items where sales receipts are not available for example at yard sales, make notes in a journal about the amount spent, items purchased, date, and the location.Create a petty cash reserve for making purchases for your business at the flea market; jot down all relevant details about purchases made from this amount in a journal.
  •           Similar to the records of purchases, you should also keep complete record of all the sales from your business at the flea market. Maintain the record by keeping the duplicate copies of receipts made for the customers or write the details of sales in a journal such as item sold, the price, and the date. You can record the sales of different items in the sales journal according to the category of item or any other way useful for you. If you have more than one business venues, keep detailed records of sales for each venue so that you can identify the more profitable location. Compare the sales amounts for each venue according to the category of items.
  •        Another important tip is the creation of a ledger with separate sections for purchase information and sales details. All information about the purchases made can be compiled on a spreadsheet recording details of different types of merchandises in separate columns. Besides the purchase prices also note other expenses like flea market stall or booth rental fee, advertisement signs, transportation and handling charges, taxes, etc. Similarly use another spreadsheet for the sales records which may include revenue generated through sales according to the category of item, and at each sales venue. These spreadsheets will help you in calculating the net profit or loss whatever the case maybe.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Which Items to Sell at Flea Market

Flea markets also known as open markets are a good launching pad for starting a new and simple business. These markets are usually held on weekends and attract many people who are in search of cheap and affordable deals for their desired items. If you are looking to get a feel of a small and easy business, flea markets are a good source. Here you can start your business by selling a few items and once you learn the trade and recognize what the customers are looking for, you can add more items.
The following few items are good selections for selling at the initial stage of your business:

Books and Magazines 

Books are the most popular and cheap item to sell at the flea markets. You can start your business with very little capital by purchasing lots of old books and magazines. These books are usually available at throwaway prices; you can sell your own collection of books and magazines, and can ask your family members and friends to donate books for your business. These collections can be sold at a moderate profit. 


Garments either new or old are a popular selling item a t the flea markets. Clothes are one of the basic requirements of humans and thus everybody needs some form of clothing. Another reason for the interest of customers in clothes is bargains and cheap prices being offered at flea markets.

Food Items

Like the garments food is also a basic necessity and usually food shops do well at the flea markets. In order to sell food items you may need to obtain a food permit from the concerned authorities. You must select popular types of food stuff which are liked by most of the people to sell. If you are not able to make good sales the leftover food will quickly perish and will cause a loss to you.

Old and Used Furniture

Although more space is needed for selling old and used furniture but you are likely to make more profit as compared to other items at the flea market. Some people are looking for antique and vintage furniture items and they pay good rates. Students usually need smaller and cheap furniture items for their rooms. Some items may be bought by the furniture store owners who resell after restoring them.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Business Relationships with Vendors and Fellow Businessmen

When you start a new business, you should make efforts to build business relationships with the vendors as well as other businessmen like you. Your contact and interaction with them will enhance your knowledge about small business ultimately helping you to succeed. Try to meet as many fellow businessmen as you can and pay full attention to what they offer in the form of advice or experiences. This information will help you greatly as you will learn the tricks of the trade.
·        Communication Skills in Business
Business relationships largely depend upon better communication skills which besides talking also include listening to your business contacts. When you communicate, be prepared to let others speak and try to mentally note useful tips and points for the business during the conversation. These interactions will also inform you about what the vendors and colleagues expect from you and in this way you are geared up to fulfill their needs.
·        Business Relationships are Mutually Beneficial
In order to achieve strong and durable business relationships a two-way traffic is necessary. Do not expect help and advice from the vendors and fellow businessmen all the time, you must also offer some sort of benefit for them in the form of some business advice or suggestion and providing new contacts or customers. Try to determine how you can benefit them and at the same time pick beneficial advice or new business contacts provided by your colleagues or vendors.
·        Regular Contact is Important in Business Relationships
Keep in touch with your business contacts regularly which will help in building a strong and lasting relationship. Regular contacts will inform you about their business activities and you may learn about some new business projects or developments. During your interactions make an attempt to know about their personal lives besides business, this will help in a better mutual understanding. When you are able to build strong relationships prospects of further business expansion and partnerships improve.
If you fail to contact your business relations regularly and call only when you need something from them, a bad impression will be created. The vendors or your colleagues will feel that you are using them just for your own benefit which may lead to soured relations.
·        Business Relationships depend upon Honesty and Mutual Trust
Business relationships cannot develop without honesty, truthfulness and mutual trust. You must always deal with honesty and if you do not know an answer or make a mistake, readily admit it and try to amend or compensate that mistake.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Effective Social Networking for the Success of a Business

The role of social networking for the success of a business is very important. An ineffective or deficient social networking of your company will not help you to gain new customers, and you may also lose your existing customers as they are not being regularly contacted. Your employees must be properly trained for effective use of social networking so that the customers can be contacted on a regular basis. The effective use of the social networking will enhance your sales and your business will achieve more profits. 

Listed below are some useful tips for the effective use of social networking: 

     Provide training for your employees either yourself or by a professional expert, on the main operating procedures being used by your company for social networking. The training medium can be a PowerPoint presentation or a webinar, and it must provide knowledge of basic things for example the way to log in, creation of updates, and the process of contacting the customers on social media websites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. and Foursquare which is a mobile network. The training program should also include the method of responding to customer’s queries; and the ways to increase the number of online followers on the social media websites. ·     

You should try to register the business on more social networking websites besides the common sites like Facebook, Twitter, etc. Your employees should also be well trained to use these new sites in a manner that maximum benefit for the business can be gained. Similarly get registered on mobile networks like Foursquare, Yelp, etc. and explain the correct use to the employees. ·      

Another way to enhance the business is through the creation of your business profile on websites such as You tube or Flickr. These sites can be used for posting photos, videos, and information about the business in general, and about products and services being offered by your company. ·     

Plan and advertise incentives in the form of discounts or free coupons, for all the customers who contact your business through the social networking websites. ·        Encourage your employees to work harder by appreciating their efforts, ask them to give suggestions and new ideas for tempting more customers to your business. Offer prizes and bonuses for good suggestions.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Online Marketing and Advertising Rules

It is an established fact that marketing is a necessary component for the success of any type of business. The online marketing campaign should be fair, ethical, and must abide the rules formulated for online marketing and advertising. Federal Trade Commission is an agency which is responsible for protecting the rights of consumers. This agency observes and controls the online marketing and advertising campaigns of the businesses and imposes stiff penalties on companies which indulge in misleading, unjust, and untruthful practices. 

Truthful Advertising 

The rules formulated by the Federal Trade Commission imply that the online marketing and advertising campaign of companies regarding their products and services should be honest and truthful.  The rule for truth in online marketing and advertising clearly states that the businesses or companies must not make deceptive and untruthful claims for their products and services. The rule also stipulates that the claims made in advertising about products and services should be true and verifiable. The final point of the rule warns the companies to refrain from using any unfair means in their online marketing and advertising campaigns. Companies which do not follow the rule can be subjected to heavy penalties. 

Disclosures about Online Advertising 

It is a requirement of the Federal Trade Commission that all online advertisements must include disclosures in their content so as the potential clients are not deceived by reading or watching the advertisement. The rule also advises the companies to place the advertisement disclosures in a prominent part of the advertisement and they should be clear and easy to read. 

Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing (Can-Spam) Act 

Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing (Can-Spam) Act which was promulgated in 2003, requires the businesses or companies to follow certain rules for sending marketing and advertising emails. According to the rule the email recipients should have the option to unsubscribe from receiving the marketing and advertising emails, and the emails must include a message which clearly states this option. The email sending companies are also required to mention their mailing address. The advertising email must also be free of any deceptive material about the products and services.