Pair programming is a software development practice that reduces risk and uncertainty by putting two minds at work in concert on the same problem. Recently, Swipely’s engineering team has been pairing on a product feature to help local merchants manage their online reputation. And when we spontaneously decided to pair on the RI Rhode Races half marathon, we realized that a lot of the benefits are the same for running as they are for programming.Read More
ERR stands for “Enhanced Recover Reduced”, and it is the most opaque pricing structure in the payments industry.
Many describe ERR pricing as a “bait and switch” scheme. Unscrupulous processors use ERR to accomplish two goals:
- To give one simple, low “quoted” rate to the merchant in order to gain their business
- To thereafter extract as much possible profit through a confusing table of hidden surcharges
The biggest cost in payments is Interchange: the non-negotiable rates set by Visa and Mastercard and passed to card-issuing banks.Read More
Loyal customers are at the heart of every business, however they don’t stay loyal unless they feel connected to and valued by your brand. For this to happen, you need to continue building a relationship with them – even when they’re not in your store.
Postal mail is the perfect way to stay in touch with customers who might not use a computer regularly, older shoppers for example. It’s also useful for upmarket businesses that cater to few customers at high prices.Read More
One of the main purposes of these tools is to help website owners target their key audience, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use them to extract data for your business too. Google is the world’s biggest search engine, so using these tools helps you stay in touch with developing trends, and meet changing market demands.Read More
Restaurateurs post ads for “social media managers” that pay anywhere from $10 an hour, to $40,000 a year. Others hope to hit two birds with one stone by hiring socially-savvy waitstaff and general managers. Whatever you’re paying for social media help, that’s your investment. If you manage social media yourself, that’s your time investment.
The question is, what’s the return on your investment (ROI)?Read More
The Paleo diet and CrossFit training programs have exploded in popularity as people explore different ways to counteract obesity and a sedentary lifestyle. The Paleo diet is based on natural, non-processed, low-carb foods. CrossFit is a scaleable strength and conditioning program suitable for professional athletes, police, marines and the general population. As part of the training program, CrossFit recommends participants stick to a Paleo diet to improve their health.
The CrossFit training program explains that our high-carb diets are ill-suited to our genetic makeup and contribute to a range of health problems.Read More
A recent article in the New York Times highlights the growing success of small businesses on Facebook. Referring to “F-commerce,” a new wave of online business strategy that involves selling products through a Facebook storefront, the piece quotes Forrest retail analyst Sucharita Mulpuru as saying, “Small businesses seem to be having more success on Facebook than large companies.” In fact, says Mulpuru, retail giants like Gap and J.C. Penney have closed their Facebook storefronts due to lack of sales.
What’s the secret?Read More
In the world of small business, sales and customer service are what you need to keep alive. Chances are there are bigger and quicker fish out there, all of who are offering up the same (or at least similar) inventory. Bringing customers exclusively to you can only be done through proving just how valuable you are. Today, as business specialties and sizes continue to change, so do the ways in which that value is shown.Read More
We’ve all heard that 9 out of 10 businesses fail. Some dispute this statistic, but one thing’s certain: More small businesses fail than succeed. Many that fail make the same critical mistakes—mistakes that drain profits from the bottom line and sap the life out of the business. But you can correct these mistakes with the right know-how and a little time.
Below are recommendations for struggling small businesses: find a mentor, clarify your long-term goals, develop your own niche, hire better employees and make customers happier.Read More
Consumers are seeing thousands of ads on a daily basis, and it can be difficult to stand out in the crowd. This has become increasingly difficult in today’s storm of social media and web-savvy buyers.
Because of this difficulty, small business owners have started to rely on today’s least expensive form of advertising: social media. However, the IBM Institute for Business Value found that 60-65% of business leaders think consumers follow brands on social media sites because they want to be a part of a community, when in reality, they’re only there to take advantage of discounts.Read More