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How to start a retail business from home

This blog is the third in a series about home-based profitable businesses that you can start without having to carry large inventories or to have a full-time presence in a physical office or storefront. It is often mentioned that small businesses employ more people than all large businesses combined. Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) play a major role in the Canadian economy. Industry Canada says that 99% of businesses in Canada have fewer than 500 employees and they employ 64% of workers in the private sector. A great deal of those businesses are retail based. In the USA, the retail industry provides a way of life for the more than 24 million people who earn their livelihood from it. Regardless of the type of retail business you want to start, you cannot ignore the power and reach...

Top Eight Consulting Businesses

Consulting business are fast becoming the most popular businesses that semi-retired, retired and disenfranchised employees are looking to get into. So lets talk about what consulting businesses are in most demand. This can help you to decide what type of consulting business that you may want to start from home. Accounting Consultants: While every business needs good accounting help and have good inside accountants, many are hiring accounting consultants to ensure that their accounting practices are delivering the best results and forecasting data that a company needs. Advertising Consultants: With the price of advertising and the new types and and channels for advertising these days, it is no wonder that advertising consultants are in great demand. Now more than ever before in the history ...

How to start a Consultant Business from home

Setting up as a self-employed consultant has become a popular move for people in a broad range of industries and sectors. But becoming a consultant is not as easy as just getting business cards for very little money at Vistaprint or your local office supply store and saying you are a consultant. The very term consultant denotes someone who is authoritative and knowledgeable on a particular subject, and that experience and know-how are something that other organizations need and are willing to pay for. In fact, the dictionary defines a consultant as “an expert in a particular field who works as an advisor either to a company or to another individual.” You can find hundreds, if not thousands, of Internet citations and articles about becoming a consultant with a few simple Google ...

How to start a home-based wholesale/manufacturer distribution business

Before explaining how to start a home-based wholesale/manufacturer distribution business, it is important to explain what a distributor is. Basically, a distributor is a middle person that serves to move product from the manufacturer to the market. While some distributors are retail and sell directly to end users, others are merchant-oriented and sell and move products from the manufacturer to wholesalers, that in turn sell to retailers. The practice of wholesale distribution is a true buying and selling game and can involve risk. It is a game that requires good negotiation skills, a nose for sniffing out the next “hot” item in the particular category you are known for, and good salesmanship to find the right buyers. The basic premise is to buy the product at a low price, then make a profi...

Why is Cyber Monday so important to small business E-commerce?

So what is Cyber Monday? Basically, Cyber Monday is to online retailers what Black Friday is for brick-and-mortar retailers. These online events have been around for a decade and can help level the playing field for small businesses. According to Forbes, Cyber Monday online revenue for 2014 reached $2.68 billion – a nearly 20% increase over the totals in 2013. It is important to note that more than one-third of these purchases were made via mobile devices. This shows the amazing evolution of online sales. Lets go back to the beginning. According to Wikipedia, “Cyber Monday is a marketing term for the Monday after the Thanksgiving holiday in the United States. The term “Cyber Monday” was created by marketing companies to persuade people to shop online. The term was coined ...

Happy Thanksgiving to our American tenants and blog followers

We want to wish our American office space Toronto tenants and our American blog and social media followers a very happy and fulfilling Thanksgiving. For our Canadian blog and social-media followers, we wanted to give a quick explanation of why Canadian Thanksgiving is celebrated on the 2nd Monday of October, and why American Thanksgiving is celebrated on the 4th Thursday in November. The most common-sense answer is that, due to Canada’s northern climate, our harvest season is earlier – but that is a very basic answer. What is not commonly known is that English explorer Martin Frobisher hosted the first Canadian Thanksgiving in 1578, and that the first American Thanksgiving was not celebrated until 43 years later in 1621. It was not until 1941 that President Franklin D. Roosevelt sign...

Starting a serviced-based business from home

In our previous blog Starting Your Home-Based Business, we pointed out that service-based businesses make up the majority of the most profitable small businesses you can start. We all have our own skill set and areas of expertise. The trick is to find the knowledge and skill set that you have that others are willing to pay for. Sometimes it is not your skill set, knowledge, experience or expertise that you could be selling. It could be that of others or products and services of others! You may not be an accountant, bookkeeper, tax specialist or be able to provide payroll services, but that does not mean that you cannot be the person who introduces those who need these services to those who can provide them. Just like a real estate agent does not own the property he or she is selling, you c...

Starting your home-based business

One of our office-space tenants who follows our blogs, asked us to do a blog series about home-based businesses because her husband took early retirement and wanted to keep busy at home. We want to first talk about the most profitable home-based business and what it takes to start one. Other topics in the series of posts will include: home-based retail (online); at-home wholesale and distributions businesses; and running a consulting business from home. Let’s start with talking about what are the most profitable and easy-to-start home-based businesses. Not surprisingly, the most profitable home-based businesses do not require a great deal of equipment, holding an inventory of goods or even renting office space. But you may want to pull out your calculator (or abacus) for the very top...

Using Business Centres as Contact Points for National & International Market Expansion

There are a lot of ways to break into new markets and attract new customers – from selling through a third party to setting up an office on the ground in that market. The main goal of expanding into a new market is to increase your sales and market share, but you will get less resistance from the market if you are seen as being local. You can get distributors to buy your product and then sell it to their own customers, therefore customers see themselves as dealing with a local company. This also means not having direct control over the selling, branding or marketing strategies that the distributor uses, essentially meaning that you do not have direct input on how your product will be represented in that particular marketplace. You could buy or merge with a local company in that market, eve...

Things you could have done in 2016 (and still can) to grow your business

With only a month and a half left in 2016, there is still things you can do before years end that will help to grow your business in 2017. Most small business owners feel that they can not afford to lose a customer, but what if that customer is taking up most of your time or that of your staff (without paying more than other clients)? It might be time to fire those clients or customers whose business only causes daily stress to you and your team, this could free up more time for new customers who are less demanding and easier to deal with. While you are firing bad customers who are time wasters, you want to take that time and concentrate on reaching out to new prospects. You will be surprised how many customers you can get by cultivating your list of prospects on a regular basis, because t...

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