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Affordable Fashion Accessories

Greetings fashionistas! If you are one of the many shoppers still out there gathering together the few touches of your Spring/Summer wardrobe together, listen here! DollarDays has the down-low on the must haves of this season’s accessory trends that don’t break the bank!

This season’s wholesale accessories are all about bold and edgy statements. Looking at jewelry, one of the biggest trends this we’ve seen this season are rock-and-roll inspired jewelry such as chains and studs but with a feminine touch. Mixing these with large plastic jewelry pieces and will be very common. The best part is, this type jewelry, especially the plastic pieces, can be found for low prices just about anywhere!

“Natural” accessories will also be large this season and will comes across in many of the jewelry pieces, hats and footwear. The use of straw materials are some most common within natural accessories and can be found mostly on hats and the wedges of many shoes. Natural jewelry pieces such as the classic surf style shell necklace will be another affordable, great-looking piece this season.

Now getting onto patterns and prints this season. Animalistic patterns are all the rage this spring/summer and you can find these prints on scarves, stockings, knee length socks, and shoes. These safari-like prints can be matched beautifully with the natural accessories mentioned earlier. Imagine, going out in your favorite summer dress and pairing it with a leopard printed scarf and a perky straw hat! Scarves for the spring and summer seasons don’t need to be thick and heavy like winter scarves, therefore, you kind find many light, warm weathered scarves at affordable prices.

One of the biggest fads this spring/summer is fringe. Fringe can be found on many of the clothing pieces this season but in term of accessories, you can find it on many of the handbags. Now besides seeing fringe on handbags, the biggest trend for handbags this season has been smaller, shoulder bags. A purse that fits all your essentials and goes comfortable under your arm has taken the place of top handled and/or larger bags. Here at DollarDays we have many beautiful designer wholesale handbags that will go wonderfully with the rest of your incredible wardrobe for the season!

April 30, 2010   No Comments

Save Money on Clothes

While you may always be on the lookout to save money, there are times when you simply have to buy something. Clothing is one example of an item that will at some point have to be replaced. Here are some tips to help you save money the next time you find yourself in need of new clothes.

Be Proactive: Take Care with Laundering
The agitating action of the washing machine is what cleans your clothes, not the water temperature. While hot water is fine for items you want to sterilize, most of your clothes can be safely washed in cold water. The color on your clothes will last longer, and your utility bills will thank you, as well.

Hit Department Store Clearance Racks
There is a natural inclination to buy clothes at discount stores when you are trying to save some cash. They have the best prices on paper products and cleaning goods; why wouldn’t they have the best prices on shirts and slacks, too? While the prices may be the lowest around, the quality will also be low. Clothes from your local discount stores will be made from lower quality fabric and threads, meaning that you will have more seams opening up. They will quickly lose their shape, and before long you will find yourself dissatisfied with the items.

However, when you visit your local department store and hit the clearance racks you will be able to purchase high quality, name brand clothing at discount prices. It is not uncommon to find clothes marked down seventy and eighty percent at the department stores. You will spend the same amount of money as you would have at the discount store, but you will be thrilled with the higher quality. Not only will the clothes last longer, but your pleasure with them will also stick around.

Local Thrift Stores
Thrift stores are a great alternative; especially when you are shopping for growing children or kids who are particularly hard on their clothes. It is not uncommon to find name brand outerwear that has barely been worn selling at ninety percent off its’ retail price. These are also great places to find children’s clothes that have barely been worn as people will donate those clothes that are outgrown too quickly.

Ebay for Professional Business Attire
There is a growing trend among professional women to sell off their business suits on Ebay and other online auction sites. Business attire is extremely expensive, rarely gets dirty and winds up on Ebay (or in thrift stores) when people get tired of it. For seventy to eighty percent off from the retail price you can pick up a stylish professional suit.

Dye Faded Jeans
Black and dark blue clothes, especially jeans, tend to fade over time. If you are required to have these items for work and find yourself constantly fighting the fade, consider dying them. This can save you substantial amounts of money compared to constantly replacing your dark colored uniforms.

Saving money when you’re buying clothes isn’t difficult. It may take a little more time. However the result of saving your hard earned money will make it well worth the extra effort.

April 23, 2010   No Comments

Free Shipping on Flip Flops

So today and tomorrow only, DollarDays is offering free shipping on select styles of FlipFlops. So to entice you a bit, we thought we’d go through the many various kinds of flip flops DollarDays has on hand.

Flip Flops for Charity
If you are looking for great ways to make a little money for your charity, take a look at DollarDays’ wholesale breast cancer awareness flip flops. With our great savings you can save lives and save feet.

Flip Flops For the boys
Maybe the charity flip flops are a bit too pink for you. Well, good thing that DollarDays has some great flip flops for boys. While not as obvious a choice when it comes to charity fundraising supplies, these attractive flip flops are pretty enough to make mom happy, and manly enough to make the boys wear.

If you’re stocking up for charity, these might make a great alternative to the pink breast cancer awareness flip flops. Or, if you just want a great pair of flip flops for your kids, these great designs and the variety of sizes will are an attractive option.

Flip Flops For the girls
If you’re looking for some sandals that are a bit more effeminate, we have some wholesale girls printed flip flops. These floral and rainbow printed sandals will be a popular summer fashion for the young ladies who get them.

April 20, 2010   No Comments

Saving Money by Buying Pre-Owned Merchandise

Are you looking for ways to save money on everything from clothes to household items? One way to do this is to reuse and recycle what you already own, and to buy used for things you don’t own. There are quite a few places to help you buy used items, and some places where you can get things you need at no cost.

If you have children you know how fast they grow and how they can quickly wear out clothes. Instead of buying new clothes for them, try saving some money and buying your clothes at garage sales. Most of the times you can find great clothes that look brand new. The same applies for household items. If you have the choice of a blender that costs $25.00 at a store or a blender that costs $1.00 at a garage sale, the obvious choice is the garage sale. If you are unsure of things from garage sales, ask the owners if you can test out the item to make sure it works well. Most people are happy to comply with this request.

Freecyle is a great resource for used merchandise. This website has local chapters where people can request something they need and offer things they do not need. Before you buy landscaping materials or plants, check out Freecycle. You may be able to find what you need for free while helping something avoid the landfills. Freecycle is free to join and a great resource for someone trying to save money. I have gotten many great things from this site, including a rug, plants, clothes, and decorations for my home.

Another great resource for saving money is used paint. Most cities have a disposal site for used paint and varnishes. What some people don’t know is that any resident can visit this site to take paint as well. This is a good resource if you have a small area you need to paint and don’t need full gallons or maybe the children want a little bit of paint for an outdoor project. To find the hazardous waste drop off site in your area, check your counties website for the location.

If you are looking for something specific and can’t find it at a garage sale or on freecyle, check out used stores. A few good ones are Savers or Goodwill. The merchandise at these stores are in good condition and less expensive than a regular retail store. Also, these stores donate a portion of the proceeds to charity. If you have to spend money at least you are helping a good cause.

Do you have any other frugal tips on how to save money by recycling and reusing? Share your tips in the comments.

April 17, 2010   No Comments

In the Mood for a Little Spring Cleaning?

You’ve seen the commercials, now you can find it on DollarDays. The Shark bagless vacuum is being made available at the incredible price of only $49 per unit, just in time for Spring.

For today and tomorrow ONLY, consider making cleaning a lot more fun. With Shark’s bagless Vacuum cleaner, you will save you lots of time and oodles of energy. No more bags to replace! This lightweight vacuum will be a cleaning dynamo in your household. So why wait? Get your bagless Shark brand vacuum cleaner today!

April 13, 2010   No Comments

House Cleaning for Less

People today are of the mindset that if you don’t have a store bought bottle of all-purpose spray cleaner, furniture polish, or glass cleaner, you just can’t clean. If you’re trying to live the frugal life and save money in every way possible, your cleaning products are a great way to get started. Almost everything you buy at the store for cleaning can be easily made at home out of ingredients you most likely already have in your cupboard. An added bonus is that not only do these homemade products clean well, they are also chemical-free. If you look up the ingredients of your nearest bottle of Pledge or 409, there is a good chance you won’t be able to pronounce most of them. These expensive chemical cleaners are full of harmful chemicals.

Do it Yourself All-Purpose Cleaner
To make a bottle of basic all-purpose cleaner to use in your kitchen and bathroom, all you need is distilled white vinegar, lemon juice, water, and an empty spray bottle. Mix together one part vinegar, three parts water, and one tablespoon of lemon juice. Shake it up, and you’re ready to clean. This little mixture will clean just as well as the chemical filled stuff you’ve been using, and it probably didn’t cost you anything. The acidity of the lemon juice kills germs and bacteria, and it helps to negate the unpleasant vinegar odor. Any lingering vinegar odor will disappear as soon as the mixture dries.

Do it Yourself Furniture Polish
To make your very own all-natural furniture polish, you only need olive oil and lemon juice. If you don’t have olive oil, vegetable and canola oil are acceptable substitutes. Mix two parts oil and one part lemon juice together in a bowl, dip your cleaning cloth into it, and go over all areas of the wood. Use a dry cloth to go over the wood again. Your furniture should gleam and shine just as well as it does when you use store bought furniture polish. This mixture can also be poured into a spray bottle for easier application.

Do it Yourself Window Cleaner
Making window cleaner is pretty much the same recipe as the all-purpose cleaner, but the lemon juice can be left out unless you just want to use it to help with the smell. Essential oils are also fine to use in place of lemon juice for fragrance. To make the cleaner, put one part distilled white vinegar in a spray bottle and fill the rest up with water. It’s best to use old newspapers to wipe the windows clean rather than paper towels. Newspapers are better at preventing streaking, and it will save you money on buying paper towels.

In addition to the above items, you can also make your own laundry detergent, dishwashing detergent, and soap. However, the ones listed above are the easiest to mix. Do you have any homemade products you use for cleaning, and if so, how do you make it?

April 9, 2010   No Comments

Internet Retailer – Wholesaling 2.0

internet-retailerIf you haven’t read already, Internet Retailer has published an article featuring DollarDays.

DollarDays similarly tries to automate its service in order to cut out the traditional retailer-wholesaler negotiation and contain costs, says Joseph.

“We want to make everything as electronically sound as possible so there is as little involvement with people as possible,” he says. “Everything is done through the Internet. Retailers place the orders they want, in a week to 10 days it shows up. It’s like buying on Amazon. If everything runs smoothly nobody needs to touch it.”

The process works, he says, because DollarDays tries to keep its prices consistent with its competition.

April 7, 2010   No Comments

Finding Money In Your Home and Car Insurance

Insurance premiums are not all alike. The truth is, premiums vary widely between companies and even on similar policies within a company. Here are some tips for finding hidden money in your insurance policies:

First, check out the competition. As Progressive and Geico note in their ads, it pays to shop around. Coverage levels and payouts for claims differ and prices for the same coverage vary depending on factors like your age, where you live, the distance of your commute and even your credit score. It can be tough to compare apples to apples with insurance and it pays to get quotes from a number of insurance companies.

Bankrate.com is an independent company providing comparisons of rates on insurance policies and other financial services. You enter information about your home and car(s) and get insurance quotes for either or both together. Remember that many companies offer discounts if you have both insurance policies with them. Bankrate also has informative articles to help you make wise financial decisions and save money.

Next, the biggest insurance saving tip of all: raise your deductibles. You always save money by raising your risk and reducing the risk to the insurance company. Take a hard look at how much you could afford to pay in case of an accident and adjust accordingly.

Finally, check your coverage levels. You may save money by scrutinizing the coverage for your home and car. Many people carry more insurance than they need and are paying more than they should.

For your home:

  • Check replacement coverage. If property values in your area have declined dramatically, the cost to replace your home in case of fire, for instance, may be lower than it once was. This certainly is not true everywhere, but it doesn’t hurt to check.
  • If you have added deadbolt locks or a home security system, installed smoke detectors, installed a locked fence, improved drainage on your property, or if the city/county has located a fire department closer to your home, you may qualify for discounts. Be sure to keep your agent informed about improvements to the safety of your property. Check out more tips at MSN Money.

For your car:

  • Check the coverage levels for accidents. With a safe driving record and few accidents, you may not need as much coverage as you have. If your car has no lien against it, you can probably drop collision. Do you want to extra pay in case someone hits your eight-year-old minivan? Weigh what you would do if the vehicle were totaled to see if collision makes sense. Check more tips at Forbes’ Investopedia.
  • Keep your agent informed of job changes. If you have been laid off, changed jobs, stopped driving for work or started working from home, your premiums could be reduced based on your reduced commute. Less time driving means less exposure to risk.

Have you lowered your insurance costs? Share your insurance saving tips in the Comments.

April 2, 2010   No Comments

Jody Reese Interview: Publisher of the Hippo Press

1. Tell us about your company and why you started it.
The Hippo Free Press is an unnewspaper. We publish weekly and are a more news magazine format with a large calendar and food section. We answer the vexing question of what to do and where to go in southern New Hampshire as well as address quality of life issues in the region, from traffic to the environment in an accessible fun way. From a very basic P&L standpoint, Hippo was started to provide advertising options for small businesses in the southern New Hampshire market. Looking over the market in 2000 we saw daily newspapers catering to national advertisers and large retail and auto customers. Similarly radio too focused on the national market. Many of the independent restaurants, retail and service businesses either didn’t advertise or felt their advertising was ineffective and expensive.

2. Describe the kinds of articles you publish, and who your target audiences are.
We tend toward quality of life type stories. We want readers to use our publication to get the most out of living in southern New Hampshire. We write about interesting political figures, new restaurant openings, and trends in live music. A recent issue explored the unusual life of birds in urban areas of southern New Hampshire. Our target audience is affluence, educated and active between the ages of 25 and 65. Most of our readers own homes and are married. This reflects the suburban nature of our market.

3. Describe the growth you’ve experienced over the years. Why do you think your publication caught on?
We started as a shoe-string operation with no employees, a few thousand weekly copies and 16 pages. Today we average 72 pages per week have the second largest circulation of any newspaper or magazine in the state and have 25 employees and 30 plus contributors. We have purchased a few other publications recently that are different from Hippo, but utilize our backend.

4. Most print newspapers that rely on paid subscriptions are dying out. What role is there for a free print newspaper in the digital age? What is your niche?
I’m not so sure I agree that paid papers are dying out. Clearly they face some daunting challenges in the classified arena, but many hold strong advertising positions in their areas of influence. And that I think is the key. It’s not as important what distribution model a paper uses, as finding a clearly defined advertising base. In the previous years daily newspapers tended to have a large base of classified advertising customers. Those customers have been moving toward more database driven models, such as craigslist or Monster. This has upended the paid daily business model. As for the role of free newspapers’ role in the digital age, I see free newspaper struggling with finding digital revenue streams just as much as the paid papers have struggled. The bottom line is you can’t earn enough revenue of a local audience online though banner ads. However, I do think that free and paid papers can use their digital platforms to create more value for current customers and maybe even use digital to break into new markets. Our niche from a customer perspective is small independently owned businesses with a touch of community banks and education.

5. In general, what are your thoughts on the death of the traditional news media? Why is it happening and how is this creating new opportunities for entrepreneurial journalists?
The term death is overused. People still watch the 6 o’clock news, they still listen to talk radio and, yes surprisingly, they even buy daily newspapers. True, some of the largest daily newspaper companies in the country have declared bankruptcy, but those bankruptcies are related to highly leveraged buyouts. In reality, large metropolitan dailies have created business models around a book of business that either doesn’t exist or that is moving to database driven avenues. If dailies are to survive they need to re-learn how to serve a local advertising base. That said, any business model upending creates plenty of business opportunities for entrepreneurs. People’s easy access to the Internet allows journalists to go after large affinity groups and create online communities that advertisers will pay to reach. I also see an opportunity for a one-person site to reach a large enough audience for that journalist to support themselves. The Internet lowers the cost of entering publishing but doesn’t mean it’s easier to be successful. Compelling content still needs to be created and an audience still needs to be reached. Both of these things are tough to do.

6. Who are your competitors and how have you succeeded where they failed?
We complete against several paid dailies, a few radio stations, cable, google and some glossy magazines. We’ve been able to pull a substantial number of advertisers out of the dailies’ weekly entertainment tabs. Most of those tabs offer very limited local content. We’ve also been successful against radio, which has seen a dramatic loss of audience and advertisers. Overall, on the business conversion side, we’ve been successful because we focus on small local businesses. More than 400 local businesses place display ads with us each month more than any of our competitors. On the audience side of the business we’ve been successful because we create compelling local content that isn’t available anywhere else. We keep standards high and keep advertising and editorial completely separate.

7. Do you have plans to expand?
We do, but not in a geographic sense. Last year we expanded our offerings to included commercial printing. We now sell most of our customers business cards, post cards and brochures. We can design, print and deliver those products very inexpensively with our current infrastructure. We also started a fan club to identify our most ardent readers.

8. How are you different than or similar to other free papers in other cities?
We’re not as youth oriented. Our market is more mature so we are too. We offer a large children calendar section and events for kids. We don’t have personals and don’t permit sex ads.

9. How has the recession affected your company and your competitors?
In some ways, the recession helped. We’ve seen many businesses that were once satisfied with their level of business start advertising to bring in new customers. Many unemployed or under-employed folks have decided it’s a good time to open a business. In the last year more than a dozen new restaurants have opened in our area. Almost all of them have some on board with us. This recession has really hurt those media outlets that rely on national advertising. Specifically radio and television stations have seen a steep decline in ad revenue. They have responded by trying to focus on the local market with lower rates to limited success. The dailies too have tried to attract more local customers by lowering rates. Both of these groups fail to realize it’s not the price of the advertising that’s the problem, it’s the value to the customers.

10. What lessons do you think your company’s story holds for small businesses in other industries?
Quality and focus. You just produce a good quality product and you need to have a customer base in mind that is large enough to support your business. We spend a lot of time and money creating compelling content so people will pick up our paper. This translates into a large audience with specific demographic traits that a certain group of local businesses need to reach. The key is “need.” If we didn’t exist how would the local cafe reach people? That’s how you know you have a solid place in the market that will survive recessions and changes in how people use technology.

April 1, 2010   No Comments

The Benefits of Using Dropship Suppliers

Dropshipping is a rather contentious topic amongst the legions of online sellers. There are those who love it and swear it’s the panacea for anyone interested in starting their own ecommerce business and then there are others who don’t believe in it as a distribution channel. Our opinion on the matter is slightly more moderate: dropshipping is a great way for small and medium sized companies to source products to sell online for a profit, however you can’t just slap a bunch of products on a website and expect the dough to start rolling in. Like any successful business, an online store requires a sound business plan, a well thought out marketing strategy, excellent customer service and some good old-fashioned hard work (and this holds true regardless of whether or not you support dropshipping).

So is using a dropshipper the right choice for you? Well, to ensure that everyone is on the same page, let’s define dropshipping first. In a nutshell, dropshipping is a supply chain management technique where when a customer purchases a product from an online store, the retailer passes the order information to a wholesale supplier and then the supplier processes and ships the order to the end-customer – hence the term dropship supplier.

For many new businesses, partnering with a reputable dropship supplier offers a way to sell a wide variety of products without the cost of carrying that inventory. Also because the supplier isn’t paid until after a product sells (and you’ve been paid), it’s a low risk way to test new products or to just start an online store.

Working with dropshippers offers other advantages to the online store owner. Since you don’t have to place an order with a supplier, wait for the inventory to arrive at your store and then start selling it, you can get the jump on hot products and new trends much quicker than a retailer who does not employ a dropshipper. In fact all you have to do is stick the product on your website, promote it, and wait for the orders to start coming in.

Most importantly, using a dropship supplier allows you to focus on your core competencies. More likely than not you got into online retailing because you enjoy the marketing, the selling, and the customer relations side of owning a webstore. That’s also what you’re good at. Using a dropshipper means you get to focus the majority of your efforts on this piece of the business and let the dropshipper focus on order fulfillment. Ultimately this leaves you more time to make more sales and more money.

These are just a few reasons why you’d want to consider using a dropship supplier. The best advice we can offer is for you to do your research and locate a reputable dropshipper that supplies the products you want to sell. They’ll be able to answer your questions and you can decide whether or not this is a business strategy you wish to pursue.

For more dropship and eCommerce tips visit the Shopster blog

Shopster offers a suite of Dropship and eCommerce solutions for small to medium sized businesses. Thousands of online merchants from around the world rely on Shopster as it simplifies the complexities of online retail, allowing merchants to manage their store, transactions, and supply chain relationships in one easy to use place. Shopster is an official eBay Solutions Partner.

Guest Blogger: Suzanne Lucas – Communication Manager of Shopster eCommerce Inc.

April 1, 2010   No Comments