How to Transition From Brick and Mortar to Online

If you’re a small business owner, then you know just how hard the pandemic hit local shops. While many businesses shut down for good, some were capable of adapting their business from a brick-and-mortar location to one focused almost entirely on online sales. So how did they do it, and how can someone replicate their success?

Using Social Media to Generate Sales

While many often lament the impact Facebook has on society at large, a business owner looking to create buzz around their product or service would do well to give it a chance. Facebook especially has become a great marketing tool for savvy business owners around the country. Kim Livengood, owner and operator of a local indoor Bazaar, found success on the platform after being forced to shut down her brick-and-mortar establishment. She turned to live streaming on the site, starting a show called The Bazaar Shopping Network. Bringing her unique brand of charm to the internet at large, she was able to bring attention to the products of merchants that had previously sold their wares at her physical location. This isn’t the only way social media can help to generate sales either. Facebook also offers a marketplace feature, allowing local sellers the opportunity to list their own creations and products directly on the platform. For marketing, Twitter and Instagram can be invaluable tools for reaching key demographics, although depending on what good or service you provide, your mileage may vary.

Creating Your Own Website

Another option many turned to after the restrictions were put in place, creating your own website can bring many benefits to a business. Before the creation of the modern website builder, designing and building your own from the ground up was squarely in the domain of expert web designers. Now, however, companies like Wix or Squarespace have given small business owners the ability to make their own marketplaces themselves. Offering up a number of different tools, these websites make it easy for someone without a working knowledge of things like HTML, CSS, or JavaScript, to create a stylish and functional website to help bolster their online image. One of the major perks of owning your own site is being entitled to all of your profits. When it comes to sites like eBay or Amazon, a cut out of each sale goes directly to the company you’ve listed on, but when you list products on your own site, you get to reap all the rewards.

Building a Better Connection With Clients

Modern technology also lends itself well to business owners that need to see their clients face to face, like teachers or private tutors. Once a rare spectacle, video calling services like Zoom, Skype, or FaceTime are now ubiquitous throughout the country. Allowing you full access to your clients without violating any of the COVID restrictions put in place. This can also be a benefit to your pocketbook, without the need to travel to and from your client’s homes, you’ll save both money and time. Adapting to the changing landscape of the business world can be difficult. But for a business to survive, and thrive, it’s an incredibly important skill to have. Especially in a world growing increasingly reliant on technology in all aspects of life.

Learn how to maximize profits and minimize losses in the stock market

 stock market

Trading in the forex market is very risky but the potential benefits are also immense. Although it is difficult to completely do away with the risks, there are several things you can do to mitigate or reduce the risks.

You can mitigate the risks by making smart investment choices as well as proper management of your portfolio. Failing to do so will cause you to pay a very huge price.

There are several other ways through which you can take advantage of the stock market to mint in millions of dollars. Many people have already done that – why not you? What strategies do they use that you can’t implement?

Let us take a look at some of the ways you can use to maximise profits and minimize risk in the stock market:

Forex trading Master class

This is one of the best courses you can take in order to master how the stock market operates. One of the reasons why most people easily give up on the stock market is a lack of information. The stock market is complicated and no one without proper knowledge about it can succeed.

Experienced financial experts from different sectors of the economy will be able to show you trading techniques and technical analysis used by some of the world’s leading investors. They will also teach you how to trade chart patterns that are most profitable in the market as well as pinpointing the right market moves and forces that will put you on the winning side.

Technical analysis mastery course

This is another great course for people who want to excel in forex trading. It is a course that will expand your technical know-how as far as forex trading and analysis are concerned. For you to be able to succeed in forex trading, you need to understand the technical aspects of the market.

This course will also show you different methods used by traders to predict the impending market moves as well as master. Lastly, the course will equip you with risk management techniques that will shield your profits and minimize your risks.

Options trading master class

Through the use of practical example, this course will impart you with 14 options methods or approaches together with technical analysis very much needed for consistent generation of profits while minimizing the risks. Join today and learn different ways of knowing which strategy to be applied.

Options Trading: Candlestick Pattern Mastery course

A candlestick pattern is a movement often seen in stock prices that some people believe can be used to predict the movement of a particular market. That’s probably why you need this course to increase your chances of winning in the stock market.

The course contains more than 32 of the most profitable patterns that will definitely give you an upper hand in making the right choices.

Options trading: Technical analysis master class

Understanding how to distinguish between bullish and bearish sentiments is critical in succeeding in the stock market. This is what you will basically learn in this course in addition to how to trade and support resistance chart patterns and candlesticks in order to have a better view of the future.

Stock trading: technical analysis mastery class

In this course, you will be able to learn over 18 advanced trading hacks techniques that will give you an opportunity of easily identifying market signals and trends. The ability to understand how trends work and foretell volatility will help increase your gains.

Cryptocurrency & Bitcoin trading: Trading Master class

The cryptocurrency market is one of the most volatile markets. However, through this course, you will be able to learn some of the latest techniques and hacks that will help you navigate easily. Besides that, the course also contains cheat sheets designed to simplify the trading process.

Cryptocurrency and Bitcoin: Technical analysis

Most economic pundits agree that technical analysis is more important in cryptocurrency compared to stock trading. This course is intended to teach people how to trade support and resistance in a proper way. This will make it easy for one to tell upward and downwards breakouts before they occur.

In general, stock trading is a risky business. However, if you are able to understand how the market operates through some of the course listed above, then you can make a kill out of your investment from stock trading.

How to Ensure that Franchisees Do Not Exploit their Staff

How to Ensure that Franchisees Do Not Exploit their Staff
How to Ensure that Franchisees Do Not Exploit their Staff

Franchisors should make sure that their franchisees pay their staff on time. They need to ensure franchisees interpret their payroll legislation and awards correctly. When brands lose sight of the action by franchisees, it can cause severe damages. Workers produce best in environments where they feel comfortable and appreciated. Franchisors have been known to offer training and support to companies that need to treat workers well. Learning to manage a franchise business is critical to operating a successful franchise. Here are the top five tips on how franchisees can pay their staff correctly:

Add a clause in the franchise agreement

A franchisor needs to be sure that their franchisees are working on their payroll correctly. A franchisor can ensure that all franchise agreements be done centrally at head office. Being done at the head office will ensure that risks are mitigated.

Use external payroll providers

There is a need to ensure that franchisees are doing their payroll correctly. To achieve this, you need to ensure that your franchisee outsources external payroll providers. External payroll providers, such as help with this work in an efficient manner. They work to ensure payrolls are provided on time and per the provided legislation.

Auditing of subcontractors for your franchisees

Every franchisor has to ensure that franchisees and subcontractors working for them are well paid. Paying them well ensures that they work efficiently with the company in mind. There is, therefore, the need for franchisees to submit their payroll awards regularly, so as they can do a payroll audit. A payroll compliance audit is not used for tax purpose but instead used as an assurance to the franchisor that their franchise has adequately interpreted the award.

Choose payroll technology correctly

It is essential to have a payroll technology that fits the company purpose. Companies need to ensure that technologies such as facial recognition and fingerprint software are appropriate for attendance monitoring. For instance, a fingerprint scanner should be used in a situation where it is difficult for it to become unrecognizable. There is, therefore, a need to select a payroll technology that is perfect for your industry.

Ensure your payroll professional is well trained and qualified

Every franchisor has to ensure that their payroll professionals have the right qualifications. Companies need to shun a “set and forget attitude.” Payroll professionals need to make it a habit of attending conferences to maintain training requirements. They also need to keep themselves up to date with payroll legislation.

Ominous Signs In the 2020 Economic Forecast

2020 Economic Forecast

\The stock market is booming as 2019 ends; however, that doesn’t necessarily mean that the national and world economies will be booming in 2020. Many economists are seeing some ominous signs in the financial landscape, and savvy investors are wise to take notice.

Wealth inequality

The growing inequality between the rich and poor is a political issue that 2020 United States presidential candidates including Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren are focusing on. It’s also an economic issue because too much of a gap does not bode well for security in general and consumer spending in particular. Furthermore, this is a problem that looms large in any economic forecast for at least the next decade because the inequality is not likely to disappear any time soon.

Political uncertainty

In the United States, there is currently uncertainty about whether President Trump will be impeached and removed from office. In the United Kingdom, it’s not clear if and when Brexit will actually happen. In short, the market does not have a clear indication of how these situations will play out, so investors are hesitant to commit capital, and corporations are reluctant to make major commitments.

Furthermore, Wall Street may find itself on a very different playing field if one of the more progressive Democratic candidates gets elected. Warren and Sanders, in particular, have talked a great deal about taxing Wall Street in general; it’s possible that major corporations can roll with these changes, but there’s no way to know yet if they will actually occur. Tech regulation, in particular, is an area of intense concern as candidates talk up the possibility of taking on the tech giants.

Another potential problem is that troubled by political uncertainty in the United States, foreign investors may no longer be investing as heavily in United States credit and treasuries. The implications of a Warren or Sanders presidency, in particular, would mean major changes to regulations, taxes and other factors that determine whether investors in Europe, Asia and elsewhere look to the United States as an arena to put their money into.

What’s more, the debt of the United States government has long been high, and, following the recent cuts in corporate taxes, has gone even higher. This is simply an unsustainable situation for the world economy because the United States government is such a major influence.

Trade tensions

While the ongoing trade war between the world’s two largest economies – the United States and China – has shown signs of lessening, it is not certain that the conflict will be resolved any time soon. President Trump has indicated that he’s willing to negotiate; he’s also said, in effect, that he’s not ready to back down.

The truth is that Trump’s policy is a major factor in the decisions corporations make about spending, and there is just not enough information at the close of 2019 to make major calls. The result could be economic stagnation in both the United States and China.

How to Know if Franchising Is Right for You Introduction

How to Know if Franchising Is Right for You
How to Know if Franchising Is Right for You

Almost everyone with ambition at one time or another thinks about owning their own business. For many, it is nothing more than a passing thought.

Others give it more careful consideration, but they never follow through. This article is written to give those who are serious about business ownership some helpful insight.

Important First Step

The first, absolutely critical step is an honest self-appraisal. Sure, the thought of ‘being the boss’ appeals to almost everyone. It is too easy to consider only the fun parts. All too often though, the other side to those fun parts gets ignored.

That is, to coin a worn-out phrase, ‘where the rubber meets the road’. An honest inventory of self must also include those unpleasant ‘what-ifs’. Check out some of the more sobering questions below to help you decide if franchising is right for you.

Personal Finances

Money is the first concern. An unforeseen lack of it is also why most businesses fail. What is your personal financial situation? This includes every source of money you have. Total these. This is your business start budget.


Did you notice under Personal Finances we did not include loans? You must decide for yourself, but generally, loans are not a wise idea when starting a business.

Why? They must be repaid, with interest, whether your business venture succeeds or not. You are in essence doubling your load at the start line.

Loans unnecessarily encumber the whole process of starting a business. Now you have doubled your burden, the business and the bank.

Not only do you have all business startup responsibilities, you must now visit the lender monthly and hand him a goodly portion of your hard-earned profits.

Guess what. Whether your business generated enough earnings to make the loan payment or not, it is still due. Does this sound like something you would recommend to a friend?


Okay, so you have gathered and totaled all your financial resources. You now have a set figure in mind for your business startup. The next step is to select a business that has startup costs well within your finance pool.

By well within, we mean you have enough money to meet all startup costs plus at least 30 percent. Business budgets must always contain margin. Margin is extra money for when business expenses exceed income.

In the business world, it is commonly known as ‘staying power’. Do you have enough money to stay in business while potentially days or weeks go by without making any profit?

Franchising May Be the Answer

For many, the above concerns are enough to conclude that maybe business ownership is not for them. For the resolute among you, franchising just may be the best answer.

Franchising is basically buying into a business that is already successful. The originator of the franchise has already conquered the startup obstacles common with new businesses.

The brand is established. Demand for the product is already existent. Partnering with success is a much easier path than striking out on your own.


Business ownership is not for everyone, but franchising is definitely a much easier way to enter the entrepreneurial lifestyle.

Banking is the Next Consumer Market That Google Could Dominate

Google is the most recent of the Silicon Valley tech giants that have made a move into the world of personal finance and banking. It was recently reported that Google will soon be offering checking accounts to individuals, and they could be available by next year. Google will be offering these accounts in partnership with banks and credit unions, and the project is being called “Cache.” The partner banks will handle the compliance and financial activities for the accounts.

Caesar Sengupta of Google spoke to reporters about the new venture. He pointed out that financial institutions will be more upfront to interact with customers than other similar programs being offered by other tech companies. Currently, Apple has a partnership with Goldman Sachs to offer its Apple Card credit account. In this venture, the financial institution is not visible to the customers.

Since the banking side of the operation is handled by the financial institutions, it begs the question of why tech companies stand to gain from a joint banking venture. One benefit for Google is the information that the tech giant can gain about banking customers that use its checking account product. This provides a detailed picture of people’s financial lives on a daily basis.

Google intends to offer other perks to customers and bank partners, such as loyalty programs. Google hasn’t decided if a service fee structure should be put in place. Sengupta reported that he believes that a no-fee policy could put Google’s checking accounts in a better competitive position.

The idea to offer checking accounts comes after the success that the company has enjoyed with its Google Pay and Google Wallet services. Other tech companies have followed suit by offering payment services. These companies include Apple and Facebook. The social media giant introduced a digital payment product earlier in 2019, and it is intending to roll out a digital currency that it has named “Libra.” The cryptocurrency is being developed in conjunction with other organizations.

Google is currently teaming up with Citigroup and Stanford Federal Credit Union. Google is motivated to attract digitally savvy and younger people who want to manage more of their daily activities with online apps. Sengupta revealed that the checking account platform will also provide a means to work with large sets of data to make them into products that add more value to the customer relationship.

Google’s representative assured reporters that they don’t use Google Pay data for advertising purposes, and it doesn’t share personal information from users of this service with advertisers. Google is cognizant that people might be wary of sharing checking account information with an information company. This could pose an extra challenge for the tech giant, and the current sociopolitical climate seems to be a further hindrance that will need to be overcome for the new checking account venture to succeed.

Are Residents in the Republican States Better with Money than Those in the Democratic States?

It’s easy to understand why a lot of people would assume that the people with the highest annual incomes would also be the people with the best credit scores. Based on a recent study, that assumption has been debunked.

The study went to great lengths to analyze the financial behaviors of people at different income levels as well as in different states. To say the results are a bit surprising would be an understatement.

At the Individual Level

It turns out that high-income earners tend to have greater difficulties managing their money than low-income earners. This is likely due in part to them leading financially complex lives where they take on more debt, which later results in more debt issues. There’s also a likelihood that the lifestyles of the wealthier individuals cause them to overextend themselves in an effort to maintain said lifestyles.

At the State Level

For the most, the study focused on credit and debt issues for residents by state. Some of the findings were actually quite interesting.

For instance, it turns out that South Dakota residents have the highest FICO scores on average at 727. That’s based on an average annual income of $56,274, which ranked 33 out of 51 for the 50 states and the District of Columbia. It’s worth noting that Montana had the highest average FICO scores in 2016, the last time such a study was done.

At the bottom end of the FICO score spectrum were the larger populated states with the larger urban areas. The list at the bottom included states such as Washington, D.C., Maryland, Texas, and California.

In an attempt to explain the data, Ted Rossman, an industry analyst representing the company that ran the study, ““It shows that it’s not just about how much you have, but also how you manage it. In some of these high-cost states, even though they make more, it goes right out the window. In D.C., they have the highest income in the country but they also have more debt than anyone else.”

He later added, “It is better to live in a low-cost place even if you don’t make as much. It seems to stretch further,”

Other Interesting Data

Some other interesting data came to light from the study. It turns out that the people in Republican-leaning states do a much better job of managing their finances than people living in Democrat-leaning states. As a point of reference, Republican-leaning states held 7 of the top 10 FICO scores on average while the Democrat-leaning states scored 8 of the 10 bottom spots.

One explanation offered for this disparity is the Republican-leaning states tend to be populated with more mature and established residents while the Democrat-leaning states have younger populations.

Another interesting result came back that the average debt burden in D.C, is $86,730, which actually exceeds the area’s average income of $85,203. Clearly, the cost of living in some states is outpacing the rise in income.

According to Rossman, the bottom line is this: “If you can pay your bills on time, and keep your debts low, that’s most of the battle right there.”

Financial Philosophy For the Future

It’s no secret that consumers desire convenience. In days past, companies would create a product, build their business, and do what they could through the use of patents and monopolistic practices to prevent competition from becoming relevant. However, most large players today have similar products of similar quality

Banks need to be willing to innovate rapidly and massively to stay competitive. If one financing firm incorporates a new program that makes financial transactions significantly easier and more efficient for consumers, consumers will inevitably migrate to that platform. Technology has advanced rapidly over the years, and that is still the case. Consumer demands evolve with the change in technology, and banks must constantly be looking for trends, evolutions in consumer preferences, and new services to keep up with their consumers and their competition.


Corporations within the finance industry must adopt a philosophy of being open to new and perhaps radical ideas.

This also means striving for a diverse crew of employees. Companies are learning that when people of different backgrounds and areas of expertise are allowed to collaborate openly, they receive the most forward-thinking and innovative ideas.


As discussed earlier, technology is constantly evolving. Whenever a new technology is released on the market the demands of consumers change. Financial firms must stay on top of these changes. This does not mean just keeping up with trends set by other companies in the field. It means constantly searching for new ways to satisfy customers that the customers may not even have realized they wanted before.

Firms must be on top of innovations related to APIs. APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) are crucial to the customer’s experiences and are being used to make groundbreaking innovations in the industry.

Company Vision

The younger generations are increasingly concerned with the visions of companies. They will abandon companies that lack ethics or concern for the issues that they are themselves concerned with. Financial companies need to show consumers that they are working to empower all members of society and improve the lives of those in the larger community.

Banks need to take these steps to break the molds of tradition. They are going to have to step up if they wish to stay on the forefront of the financial industry.

Sustainability is a huge factor. Companies need to prove to consumers that they are taking steps to create a more sustainable future. People also want to feel like they are empowered to follow their dreams. This means that all individuals and small businesses must be given the tools to be successful.

What Investors Should Know About The Walt Disney Company’s Financial Strength

What Investors Should Know About The Walt Disney Company's Financial Strength
What Investors Should Know About The Walt Disney Company’s Financial Strength

Want to participate in a short research study? Help shape the future of investing tools and you could win a $250 gift card!

The Walt Disney Company (NYSE: DIS), a large-cap worth US$252b, comes to mind for investors seeking a strong and reliable stock investment. Market participants who are conscious of risk tend to search for large firms, attracted by the prospect of varied revenue sources and strong returns on capital. But, its financial health remains the key to continued success. This article will examine Walt Disney’s financial liquidity and debt levels to get an idea of whether the company can deal with cyclical downturns and maintain funds to accommodate strategic spending for future growth. Remember this is a very top-level look that focuses exclusively on financial health, so I recommend a deeper analysis into DIS here.

Does DIS Produce Much Cash Relative To Its Debt?

Over the past year, DIS has ramped up its debt from US$25b to US$57b – this includes long-term debt. With this increase in debt, DIS’s cash and short-term investments stands at US$10b to keep the business going. Moreover, DIS has generated US$14b in operating cash flow during the same period of time, leading to an operating cash to total debt ratio of 24%, meaning that DIS’s debt is appropriately covered by operating cash.

Does DIS’s liquid assets cover its short-term commitments?

Looking at DIS’s US$44b in current liabilities, it seems that the business may not have an easy time meeting these commitments with a current assets level of US$34b, leading to a current ratio of 0.77x. The current ratio is the number you get when you divide current assets by current liabilities.

Does DIS face the risk of succumbing to its debt-load?

With a debt-to-equity ratio of 54%, DIS can be considered as an above-average leveraged company. This is common amongst large-cap companies because debt can often be a less expensive alternative to equity due to tax deductibility of interest payments. Since large-caps are seen as safer than their smaller constituents, they tend to enjoy lower cost of capital. We can assess the sustainability of DIS’s debt levels to the test by looking at how well interest payments are covered by earnings. Net interest should be covered by earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) by at least three times to be safe. For DIS, the ratio of 25.05x suggests that interest is comfortably covered. It is considered a responsible and reassuring practice to maintain high interest coverage, which makes DIS and other large-cap investments thought to be safe.

Next Steps:

DIS’s cash flow coverage indicates it could improve its operating efficiency in order to meet demand for debt repayments should unforeseen events arise. Furthermore, its lack of liquidity raises questions over current asset management practices for the large-cap. I admit this is a fairly basic analysis for DIS’s financial health. Other important fundamentals need to be considered alongside. You should continue to research Walt Disney to get a better picture of the stock by looking at:

  • Future Outlook: What are well-informed industry analysts predicting for DIS’s future growth? Take a look at our free research report of analyst consensus for DIS’s outlook.
  • Valuation: What is DIS worth today? Is the stock undervalued, even when its growth outlook is factored into its intrinsic value? The intrinsic value infographic in our free research report helps visualize whether DIS is currently mispriced by the market.
  • Other High-Performing Stocks: Are there other stocks that provide better prospects with proven track records? Explore our free list of these great stocks here

5 Ways Potential Franchise Owners Can Protect Themselves

5 Ways Potential Franchise Owners Can Protect Themselves
5 Ways Potential Franchise Owners Can Protect Themselves

Owning a business is the dream of many people, and buying a franchise can be a great way to make this happen. But before you buy that business, you need to make certain that you protect your interests.

Potential franchise owners should understand that there exists a major conflict between those who offer franchises (franchisors) and those who buy them (franchisees.) Franchisors make money through royalties, which are based on gross revenue, while franchisees make money from profits.

This can lead to franchisors making business decisions that help them a lot more than the franchisees. A classic example of this is Subway’s $5 footlong sandwich promotion. The Subway corporation loved this promotion because it greatly increased sales, but many Subway franchisees did not love it so much, as it cut into their profit margin.

The time to protect your interests is before you sign the franchise contract. In addition to hiring competent legal and financial counsel to review the contract, here are 5 ways you can do this:

1. Get a Long-Term Commitment

You should never assume that you will be able to continue owning the franchise just as long as you meet some performance requirements. You need to read the contract carefully. Many franchisors will stick end dates into their boilerplate contract. This could result in the contract ending in as little as 10 years, and they could afterward force you to sign a new contract with far less favorable terms.

2. Make Sure You Can Sell It

Another stipulation often found in boilerplate franchise contracts is the right of first refusal when it comes to selling the business. This gives the franchisor the right to buy the business before anyone else can. You should try hard to eliminate this stipulation if it is included, because if you should decide to sell your business in the future, this clause could greatly diminish the business’ value.

3. Make Sure You Can Close the Business

Every new business owner believes that they will succeed, but unfortunately some do not. Because of this, you need to make sure that the franchise contract has an early-out clause. Without it, if you decide to quit, you could end up owing significant royalties.

4. Get Territorial Protection

Every business has to worry about the competition. It is part of being in business. But you should not have to worry about competition from another franchisee of the same company. So, you should make certain that the contract provides some form of territorial protection. The more the better.

5. Get Support

Running a business can difficult, and running a franchised business comes with its own set of difficulties. Fortunately, you do not have to face them by yourself. Today, there are many professional associations that support franchisees, whose members are people just like you. You should contact one even before you sign on the dotted line.