Making do with less is a sign of the times, but when it comes to your sweetie, you really want to make her Valentine’s Day special to show her how much you care. How can you do that when you’re on a budget?
Spend more time and effort instead of spending lots of money.
Carefully arrange for a fabulously romantic dinner at home. Show her how much you care without buying anything but the food and the wine, it’ll be less expensive than a restaurant, and if you take the time and care to set the mood, there will definitely be romance in the air!
How? Tell her she has to disappear for the later afternoon or early evening on Valentine’s Day so you can prepare for her surprise. That will have her anticipating something special, and set the stage for your evening.
Before the big day, do the preparation. Make the arrangements to farm the kids out to grandma or a friend, scope out the linen closet for the right tablecloth and napkins, make sure there are plenty of candles and candleholders to create the atmosphere, have the silver and glassware polished, and check out what might be available for dinner. If you’re not yet married or living together, give your space a good cleaning the day before, and make things shine. If you don’t have nice linens or china or glassware or good silver, borrow them from a friend or family member.
If you aren’t the best cook in the world, see what’s available in the gourmet section of the local supermarket that can be simply popped in the oven and cooked for a set amount of time, and supplement it with fresh greens, some prepared and ready to heat side dishes, and a killer dessert. Pick these up the morning of Valentine’s Day so they’ll be fresh and tasty. Keep her preferences in mind, and buy the seafood she loves even if you prefer the steak.
If you can cook, make the effort. Keep it simple and elegant.
Whether you buy prepared foods, or do the cooking yourself, remember that presentation is as important as the content. Take the time to make things look wonderful. How? Check out http://gourmet.com or http://epicurious.com and look at the images of the dishes. How do they garnish? How do they use the sauces on the plate? Now use your imagination and do something similar. It’s amazing what you can do with a sprig of fresh herbs and a couple carrot curls, or a dash of wasabi across the plate before placing the entree.
Valentine’s evening, meet her at the door, showered, shaved and dressed nicely. Take her coat. Make her feel pampered. Kiss her passionately, then lead her into your carefully prepared candlelit table setting. Have the lights low. Have some soft music playing, and make sure it’s a song that means something to her. Pull out her chair. Then tell her you love her. The rest will come easily.
January 18, 2011 No Comments
1. Make sure your tires are properly inflated. The proper tire pressure should be listed on the tire or on door of your car. Over time, tire pressure decreases. In addition, tire pressure suffers even more during the cold months. If your tires aren’t properly inflated, you will see a decrease in your gas mileage. For a couple of dollars, you can buy a tire gauge. It is a good idea to check your tire pressure every couple of weeks. If you find they are too low, you can use an air pump to fill them up. If you don’t have one, most gas stations have air stations that cost a dollar to fill your tires.
2. Empty your trunk. People have a tendency to load their trunks up with stuff. It is always a good idea to empty your trunk after each shopping visit. Do your best to limit what you keep in the trunk. If you have a lot of stuff in it, the weight will add up. That leads to problems with your gas mileage. If your car weighs more, you are using more fuel to run it. By keeping it clean, you will see a lot of savings.
3. Plan your trips. This may seem simple, but it has a major impact on how much gas you use. If you are grocery shopping, make a list of what you need. This will prevent you from forgetting something and having to go back out. In addition, consider what errands you can combine. If your bank is located near the grocery store, try to do your banking and shopping tasks in one trip. That will save you time and money. The fewer times you have to run to the store, the more you will save on gas.
4. Avoid leaving your car in an idle state. A common misconception is that it takes more gas to start a car than leave it running. That is only partly true. If you are waiting in your car for someone to run in to a store, you might want to consider shutting it off. If it’s a matter of a few seconds, leaving your car on is a smart move. However, shut off your car if it’s going to be any longer. You waste a lot of gas when you leave your car running.
5. Keep your speed steady. Naturally, you will have to speed up and slow down at various times. However, keeping these habits to a minimum will help your gas mileage. If you’re driving on a highway, you are better served by maintaining a steady speed. Changing lanes to pass cars will only lead to wasted gas mileage. In addition, driving fast means a reduction in fuel efficiency. Not only is it safe to observe speed limits, it will also save you money.
January 13, 2011 2 Comments
First, be sure to save as much money as possible before beginning a small business. A good plan is to save as much money as possible for this investment and also include your expenses for day to day living for at least a year. Once your business gets going, you will want to put back most of that money into your business so that you can pay for such things as operating space, advertising, insurance needs and equipment.
Then, begin your small business on a “small basis.” For instance, if you can work somewhere else and not have to rent a place, that will help. And, if you don’t need to hire employees right away, do what you can by yourself or with a family member or friend.
Another tip when considering a small business is to create a business plan. It is important to understand the need to know your profit numbers and creating a break-even analysis. A profit-an-loss forecast and a cash flow projection are also helpful. When you create a business plan you will also be able to project your start up costs and what marketing strategies you will need.
It is also vital to keep a competitive edge—knowing more than your competitors—and that can happen by creating a product that is difficult to duplicate, establishing your business in a great location, be effective in making and distributing your product, and giving excellent customer service. And, make sure to put all agreements in writing. It is also advised to seek legal counsel to ensure that your business begins and stays, in the up-and-up.
In addition, to keep your small business going and highly productive, hire good and competent people. A competent employee, who is motivated and positive, can be extremely valuable to your business. Of course, to hold on to such an employee, you will need to treat your employees fairly, professionally and with respect. It is a known fact that employees who are treated fairly and in a decent manner, will be more productive and attractive many more customers.
When it comes to advertising your small business keep your advertising focused on producing sales. Some successful businesses include offers in their advertising. And, when advertising, offer a lesser version of your product at a lower price. Many customers are not willing or unable to pay the asking price for a service or product. On the other hand, some customers are looking to buy a high quality product. Therefore, you can increase your revenue by also offering a more high quality, comprehensive product or service.
January 6, 2011 1 Comment
Large retailers are following the trend to go green, and wholesalers may want to take advantage of this opportunity by accumulating goods that major retailers will no longer keep in stock. It is suggested that wholesalers interested in capitalizing on this opportunity keep an eye on a couple of vertical sites that lean towards green technology. When prices begin to drop on non-green items that the retailer will no longer carry, it would be beneficial to the wholesaler to make a move before too many other bids are offered.
As 2010 comes to a close, Drop Ship Access offers five tax tips for those new to the dropship business. These tips include: do not incorporate; consider all possible allowable expenses, such as mortgage, internet, and office supplies; keep in mind that private health insurance is an allowable expense; likewise, a self retirement plan may be deductable; and vehicle expenses may be deducted if the vehicle is used in conjunction to the business.
It is worth the effort to put time into your business’s website in order to assist in your online search engine rank. Ten tips to assist you in taking advantage of SEO include using appropriate keywords, making sure URL’s are simple, updating content on a regular basis, having a site map, creating multiple domain names, connecting with other sites, and monitoring the traffic on your site.
With the joy of the holiday season also comes the hassle of holiday returns. Online retailers need to be sure to have an efficient, customer-oriented return policy in order to ensure holiday, as well as future, business success. That return policy needs to be in place and posted for all customers to see prior to a customer’s purchase. If and when returns do occur, be sure that any employees you may have are able to process returns and refunds while remaining friendly and not interrogating the customer in regards to the reason for the return.
December 24, 2010 No Comments
December 23, 2010 No Comments
Over 200 products have had their prices slashed to rock bottom deals. Up to 30% OFF!
We need to blowout over 2000 products to create more space in our warehouse for new products in 2011. This once a year sale allows you to save huge on popular products, so get them while you can!
Giant Year End Sale ends Dec 31st
December 22, 2010 No Comments
Don’t believe those Scrooges who say that the holiday season has be financially stressful. Christmas and New Year’s Day are times that are meant to be thoroughly enjoyed now and fondly remembered later. Getting there while keeping your budget intact is easier than you may think. Here are a few ideas for frugally happy holidays.
Think like a child. Shop for the adults on your Christmas shopping list at toy stores as well as department stores. You would be surprised what bargains you can find that way. For example, if you go online to the Toys ‘ R Us Big Kids section, you will find nice sales on adult gift favorites such as 8GB MP3 players and 12MP digital cameras.
No matter rain, snow, or sleet, do not pay for gift boxes. If you don’t find free boxes anywhere else, then get them from the United States Postal Service. In fact, the U.S. Postal Service is running commercials everyday offering free boxes for its “if it fits, it ships” campaign.
Bring your work home with you. Play the Secret Santa game with adult family members just like you do with your co-workers on the job. Instead of buying adult aunts, uncles, siblings and cousins individual gifts, get together and draw names for Christmas presents. Set a reasonable price limit (perhaps $50), have everyone provide a short wish list, and then start shopping. This approach ensures that each person gets at least one really nice gift instead of many cheaper small ones that they will forget receiving by New Year’s Day.
Find the very best price for gifts — free. Check out online bargain sites such as Free Sample Freak to find offers for free samples, coupon codes, instant win games, and special deals that you can turn in to Christmas presents and stocking stuffers.
For New Year’s Eve, party like it’s last year. Are you going to a hot, can’t miss party and need something to wear? Instead of spending money or increasing credit card debt to buy a new outfit, look at the back of your closet for a rarely worn outfit that may be old to you but new to everybody else.
Start a new, inexpensive tradition for New Year’s Day. For instance, make it a day to volunteer. There are a number of charity organizations that would welcome your help for even one day. Or, celebrate the first day of the year by calling, visiting, emailing, or text messaging everyone that you know and saying you care.
These are just a few ideas to help you enjoy the holidays without overspending. Amid all of the focus on shopping for gifts and decorations, it is easy to forget the purpose of it all. Remember, the important part of giving a gift is not the gift itself, it is the fact that you show you care by giving one at all.
What ways have you found to give meaningful gifts at an affordable price? Share your ideas and opinions.
December 20, 2010 No Comments
If you get tired of huge savings and exclusive deals, you can opt-out at anytime, reply “STOP” or text “STOP” to our short code “91904″.
December 17, 2010 No Comments
Dropship Tips: A Beginner’s Guide to SEO for Ecommerce
For those new to dropshipping, SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization and, in short, allows search engines to find a specific website. Keywords are essential for SEO, and it is recommended that good keywords that point directly to a product or type of product being sold be used in the title, URL, and 5-7% of the content of a retail site.
Google is modifying the way retailers appear on searches. In the past, retailers appeared based on relevance; however, Google is now taking into account customer reviews, with those businesses receiving negative reviews falling to the bottom of the list. Google claims that they will monitor reviews to be sure that authentic comments are being made. This should be a reminder to all e-retailers to place an emphasis on good customer service.
Online sales are up 12% from this time last year. This is most largely attributed to free shipping offers. There was a 20.8% increase on free shipping orders the last week of November from the same week in 2009. Retailers continue to have success offering free shipping as the average order with free shipping is 30% higher than an order that does not include free shipping.
In a survey asking consumers to consider fraud protection, product search availability, and a website’s ease of use, 30% stated that fraud protection is the most important attribute. The three sites consumers were to focus on included eBay, Overstock.com, and Zappos.com. 78% of those surveyed considered eBay to have the best fraud protection as well as the most attractive site layout and least amount of glitches.
Google Instant shows search results as the searcher is typing. Online retailers need to adapt SEO in order to be seen with this new search enhancement, and the following four suggestions are offered to assist with this adaptation. Make sure the website is up-to-date and will catch a viewer’s attention, include well-written meta-descriptions, write descriptive alt tags, and compose enticing header tags.
December 17, 2010 No Comments
The cost of groceries can eat into a well planned budget. You can make save money at the grocery store using these tips.
1. Make a list. Look at the store advertisements to see what the weekly specials are as you plan meals. The special deals are listed on the front page of the ad. Grocers call them loss leaders because they may not make any money on these items. They get you into the store. Go to several different stores to buy the special items.
2. Limit the amount of prepared or packaged food. The outside aisles of the grocery store contain the fresh ingredients such as meat, produce and dairy. The inside aisles are where most of the packaged food is found. Try to buy most of your food from the outside aisles.
3. Calculate the serving price or per ounce cost when comparing prices. The bigger package is not always the best deal.
4. Have a price list for items that you buy frequently. That way you know when a sale represents a good value and you can stock up at the sale price.
5. Buy store brands, especially for basics like flour or butter. Only buy a more expensive brand if you find a noticeable difference in the taste or performance of certain products.
6. Go to the store well fed. If you shop on an empty stomach you buy more. If you are hungry you’ll be tempted to buy more than you need.
7. Coupons are often for items that are prepared or packaged. If you wouldn’t buy it without the coupon then don’t buy it even with the coupon savings. Manufacturers’ are hoping you will develop a taste for their product at full price.
8. Learn to cook the basics. When you are confident that you can make your own biscuits or chili you won’t need to buy them in the store. When you shop you will be buying basic ingredients which are much cheaper, healthier and taste better.
9. Plan for some nonmeat meals. Try some Indian recipes or use eggs to make omelets for dinner. Meat can be expensive. Vegetables, beans, rice and eggs are great values for the money.
10. Buy food that you can make into snacks. Vegetables can be cut up and stored in the fridge for crunch snacks. Make a batch of homemade cookies or cut up fruit.
December 16, 2010 1 Comment