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  • Turning Personal Triggers Into Sales    Turning Personal Triggers Into Sales Creating great relationships with customers is the goal of every retailer, but do you know the most powerful way to can connect with the individuals who shop your store? Learning to fascinate your clientele is an emotional connection that can cut through distractions, says Sally Hogshead, author...    more...  
  • How to Keep Negativity Out of Your Business    Shawn Achor, author of The Happiness Advantage, provides business owners with suggestions for keeping the workplace positive. By incorporating these suggestions, Achor says both managers and staff can enjoy the personal and organizational benefits of making happiness a means to success.    more...  
  • Is Your Cash Flow Under Control?    Do you have a large percentage of your personal finances tied up in your store? Do you wish you had a better handle on its cash flow so you could foresee budget problems before they become a crisis? Philip Campbell, an accountant with nearly three decades of experience in the retail world, helps...    more...  
  • Why Pinterest Is Smart Marketing    Shop owners who haven’t joined Pinterest are missing a great opportunity to boost sales, leverage their brand and increase traffic to their store’s website, says Beth Hayden, a Boulder-based social media expert and author of Pinfluence: The Complete Guide to Marketing Your Business with Pinterest.    more...  
  • Use Merchandising To Tell Your Store's Unique Story    Use Merchandising To Tell Your Store's Unique Story You don't have to look far when you want bold, beautiful ways to display merchandise, suggests designer, writer and speaker Debi Ward Kennedy. Look to nature for the season's color palette and current trends to create eye-catching visuals that also fit your store's signature style.    more...  
  • Time To Revamp, Rethink Your Online Strategy    What can be learned from the fourth quarter of 2012 to help make the new year even better? Don Crowther, online marketing and social media expert, explains how 2013’s retailing environment requires that shop owners step up their online marketing strategy to compete in today’s increasingly mobile...    more...  
  • Ready To Hear The "Retail Truth"?    Normal 0 0 1 1986 9138 Giftbeat 179 62 13905 11.1539 0 0 0 Have you ever thought about firing a difficult customer? Do you ever wonder if a shopper will...    more...  
  • Want To Give Your Marketing A Lift?    Normal 0 0 1 2067 10546 Giftbeat 234 49 14474 11.1539 0 0 0 Author and consultant Jeff Slutsky says grassroots marketing techniques can breathe new life...    more...  
  • Pin Your Tale On Pinterest    Social media’s new darling, Pinterest, has quickly become the third most popular destination, with approximately 2.2 million daily users.  In last month’s GiftBeat, there was a front-page article about it and a mention from Joyce in her From The Editor column.  If you weren’t already...    more...  
  • The "Change Is Good" Philosophy    The “Change is good” and “never stay safe” are two favorite quotes of merchandising and retail development expert Michelle Craig. After spending two decades merchandising in stores such as Fred Segal, Anthropologie and Z Gallerie, Craig now owns Bird’s Eye View and works with a variety of retailers...    more...  
  • 10 Easy Tips for In-Store Displays    Michelle Craig is an experienced merchandiser and former retailer who has spent more than two decades in the industry working with Fred Segal, Anthropologie and many other notable stores. We’ve collected 10 of her easy-to-implement ideas to help you design your displays in fresh new ways.    more...  
  • Pre-Employment Questions To Ask    When it’s time to hire a new staffer, Bill Bregar of Loss Prevention Systems, Inc. suggests store owners develop a pre-employment hiring process that includes a criminal records check, credit check, trace of a candidate’s Social Security number and an integrity interview.    more...  
  • Are Employees Stealing? Stay Alert    Have you ever wondered if employees steal from you? “If you have one or more employees, you have employee theft to some degree,” says Bill Bregar, president of Atlanta-based Loss Prevention Systems, Inc. “It may be pencils or paper they’re taking home, all the way up to cash or merchandise.”    more...  
  • Stand Out Using Triggers In Your Store’s Messages    Author and speaker Sally Hogshead says fascination plays a role in every type of decision-making, from the brands people choose to the employees you hire. By activating the right triggers, you can make anything become fascinating, including the messages you convey to your shoppers.    more...  
  • Tale Of Success: 28 Stores & Growing    Tale Of Success: 28 Stores & Growing With a network of 28 Hallmark Gold Crown gift stores in New England and more than four decades in retailing experience, Bob Anderson, president of The Paper Store, has developed an aggressive yet sustainable growth strategy for his business.    more...  
  • Ready To Ride "The Energy Bus" In 2012?    Does the end of a hectic fourth quarter leave you feeling drained? Want to start 2012 with the energy you need to make a successful and fresh start, even in a tough economy? Author and speaker Jon Gordon advises companies of all sizes on how to refresh both their leaders and team...    more...  
  • Tips To Keep Your Team Productive    Every owner and manager feels the crunch of scarce time and resources. But when your employees get lost in the shuffle, it can be a real problem that attacks team success and the health of your business. Author and cofounder of training and consulting company The Culture Works, Chester Elton...    more...  
  • 8 Tips For Employee Recognition    Author and speaker Chester Elton talks to companies all over the world about successfully recognizing employees in order to increase productivity, retention and morale. Here are some great tips for recognizing your staff that go "above and beyond the ordinary" to strengthen your business.    more...  
  • How To Engage In An Online World    How To Engage In An Online World Strategies for using social media tools are constantly changing, just as these online communities keep evolving. Expert Mari Smith offers a fresh analysis of social networks and provides tips and techniques for both business owners who already have a strong online presence and those who have yet...    more...  
  • 10 Ways To Build Social Relationships    Author Mari Smith is a passionate social media leader, specializing in relationship marketing and connecting through Facebook. Here, Mari offers some easy ideas for how postings can create powerful bonds with customers online.    more...  
  • Riding The Economic Roller Coaster    Riding The Economic Roller Coaster Are the ups and downs with the economy making you anxious about fourth quarter? Don’t be, says longtime retailer and industry expert Tom Ungrodt.    more...  
  • Keep Inventory Looking Full for Fourth Quarter    When cash is tight, how do retailers make stores appear to be brimming with a bountiful selection of merchandise? Tom Ungrodt, president and CEO of Ideation Inc. — as well as a retailer for more than three decades — offers these quick tips for using what you have to generate sales and add...    more...  
  • What Messages Are You Sending?    Consumers are tired of saving and feeling bad about shopping. Have you helped them recover from bad times now that you’ve made it through? Texas retailer Melissa Haberstroh spoke last month in Atlanta about the messages retailers send to shoppers. She finds many consumers are ready to return to...    more...  
  • 10 Pricing Strategies to Increase Profits    Pricing expert Tom Shay offers a variety of techniques for growing your profits through pricing. What he offers is a buffet of ideas that can be chosen individually and added to what is already working in your store. Here are 10 strategies he has seen be successful that you can add to your mix.    more...  
  • How To Price For Profits    Do shoppers in your area know you as the expensive place to shop? Is this driving shoppers to visit your competition instead of looking to you first? Tom Shay, longtime retailer and retailing strategy expert, spoke at the Dallas Market Center last month on “Pricing Strategies for Profits Plus.”    more...  
  • Gathering Free Info From Your Shoppers    The greeting is an important step in the G.R.E.A.T. selling method by author Rick Segel. But also important, he says, is the pre-greeting. These tips show you how to get key information from your shoppers when they walk in your door — before you’ve even greeted them.    more...  
  • Rick Segel's GREAT Sales Tips    How do you train your sales staff? Is it something you’ve put off or abandoned because past training programs haven’t worked? This important step for growing your business doesn’t need to be complicated. Rick Segel just released a book, The Retail Sales Bible: The GREAT Book of GREAT Selling,...    more...  
  • Ready To Engage Shoppers Online?    Ready To Engage Shoppers Online? Have social media changed your business? Although Facebook and Twitter provide great points of connection, the principles for managing your social media browsers should remain the same as those in your store, says author and marketing expert Melissa Galt.    more...  
  • 8 Great Ideas For Social Media Posts    Don’t know what to talk about on Facebook and Twitter? Marketing and social media expert Melissa Galt offers a variety of suggestions for engaging shoppers who walk onto your social media sites.    more...  
  • Take Action to Create A Beloved Company    Jeanne Bliss, author of "I Love You More Than My Dog," provides many actionable goals to help you reach beloved status with your shoppers. For each of the five decisions Bliss outlines in her book, she also gives actions that can be taken right away and often do not cost anything to implement in...    more...  
  • Winning Hearts To Build Your Biz    Winning Hearts To Build Your Biz Would shoppers show you the same loyalty as their best friend? If you become one of their “beloved” companies, that may just happen. Earning elevated status with shoppers doesn’t happen in a flash, but it also doesn’t cost your business anything to make it a goal, says Jeanne Bliss, founder of...    more...  
  • Management Mistakes & Solutions    Author and speaker Carol Hacker draws from her more than 25 years of experience working with retailers to offer this advice on common management blunders.    more...  
  • Does Your Biz Have Service Heroes?    Does Your Biz Have Service Heroes? Why employ an ordinary sales staff when your store could buzz with a team of service heroes? Hiring the right people is the first step, advises author and speaker Carol Hacker.    more...  
  • Build Your Business To Build Your Brand    John Moore, formerly in marketing for major retailers such as Starbucks Coffee and Whole Foods, advises companies on how to create sound marketing and business practices. Despite his strong marketing background, he suggests business owners should focus on building a strong business before...    more...  
  • Does Your Small Biz Appear "Big" Enough?    Does Your Small Biz Appear Does your small business appear big enough to your customers? While many large companies find value in looking smaller, there is such a thing as being viewed as too little, according to marketing expert John Moore.    more...  
  • Expert Shares Three Key 2011 Color Stories    Expert Shares Three Key 2011 Color Stories As you plan color choices for your 2011 merchandise, consider adding some “pop” to your palette. That’s one of the ways to mix it up with some of the soothing neutrals you’ll see next year.    more...  
  • The "New Normal" In China    The After just returning from another three weeks in Southeast Asia, I was asked by Giftbeat to share my thoughts on the changes taking place in China. After this trip, “normal” will need to be redefined.    more...  
  • The Manufacturer/Buyer/Rep Triangle    The Manufacturer/Buyer/Rep Triangle For the past two years, poor economic conditions in this county have stressed independent businesses to — and sometimes beyond — their capacity. It’s been the worst two years for a lot of us. It has also given rise to a grassroots movement toward community and locality. Organizations like the...    more...  
  • 10 Tips For Marketing To Today's Influential Woman    Here, Maddy Dychtwald, co-founder of Age Wave and author of Influence: How Women's Soaring Economic Power Will Transform Our World for the Better, shares 10 tips for marketing to today's influential woman.    more...  
  • How To Tap Women's Financial Power    How To Tap Women's Financial Power Looking for the next must-target demographic as you plan your marketing strategies for 2011 and beyond? The good news is that this segment, which has been labeled “the greatest new emerging market,” includes more than half of the population, according to marketing trend expert Maddy Dychtwald,...    more...  
  • Make Happiness a Strategy, Not Just a Goal    Make Happiness a Strategy, Not Just a Goal Is the goal of owning your own business to eventually find happiness? Shawn Achor, author of the recently released book The Happiness Advantage: The Seven Principles of Positive Psychology That Fuel Success and Performance at Work , advises companies around the world on how to turn happiness...    more...  
  • Ready To Tap Fashion's Potential?    Ready To Tap Fashion's Potential? Fashion accessories remain one of the top sellers in specialty retail, yet many gift store owners haven’t explored the full potential of this category. We asked author, retailer and editor of Fashion Advantage magazine, T.J. Reid, to share her expert advice on the category. Her insights reveal...    more...  
  • Last-Minute Ideas For Holiday Promotions    Although it’s November, there is still time to add promotions to your holiday marketing and increase the number of times shoppers visit your store. Award-winning author, retailer and speaker T.J. Reid offers easy-to-implement ideas that can help boost holiday sales. 1. Schedule a holiday...    more...  
  • 10 Ways To Merchandise Ornaments    Ornaments remain one of the biggest categories of the fourth quarter, but there are only so many baubles you can fit on a Christmas tree. Chris Tkachuck, Midwest-CBK director of visual display, has written about how to “ornament your life” based on her work visual merchandising for more than...    more...  
  • Seasonal Display Ideas That Pop    Seasonal Display Ideas That Pop Are you ready for the homestretch of 2010? Chris Tkachuck, director of visual display for Midwest-CBK, offers a bounty of merchandising, display and window ideas that will help your entire store look fresh through the fall and winter holidays. She also shares tips on how to incorporate unique...    more...  
  • How To Navigate The Downturn & Prosper    How To Navigate The Downturn & Prosper What if you learned the down economy contains advantages that make it a great time to reach out to new customers? Not only does Dave Lakhani, author of How To Sell When Nobody's Buying: (And How To Sell Even More When They Are) , believe this is the case with the current downturn, his new book...    more...  
  • 5 Low-Cost Ways To Market Online    Business expert and consultant Dave Lakhani sees gift retailers making mistakes while trying to sell products and market their businesses during the current down economy. Here, the author of How To Sell When Nobody’s Buying offers five free or low-cost tips that he says should be part of every...    more...  
  • Expert Offers Credit Card, Bank Fee Advice    When Giftbeat asked retailers what questions they would ask Philip Campbell, author of Never Run Out of Cash , a popular theme focused on losing cash to high credit card fees and bank fees. Campbell, an experienced retail accountant, discusses these concerns and shares his advice on using credit...    more...  
  • How To Run Events That Stand Out    In-store events remain a powerful tool for increasing both traffic and sales in your store — when they are done right. How many events should you host per year and what key elements make them a success? We asked Georganne Bender, retail strategist and half of the Kizer & Bender speaking duo (with...    more...  
  • 8 Things To Consider When Planning Events    When brainstorming ideas for major in-store events and promotions there are many things to consider before setting the date and spreading the word. These tips from Rich Kizer and Georganne Bender are good to keep in mind as you generate event ideas, as well as when you begin laying out your plan...    more...  
  • How To Run Events That Stand Out    In-store events are a powerful tool for increasing traffic and sales — when they are done right. Georganne Bender, retail strategist and half of the Kizer & Bender duo, shares her advice.    more right  
  • Ready To Reinvent Your Gift Shop?    You’ve stayed afloat during the recent economic downturn, but what do you want to accomplish next with your business? Are you hoping to grow or make your store profitable enough to sell? Retail expert, consultant and speaker Jon Schallert says today’s gift retailer must be ready to make drastic...    more...  
  • 5 Principles of a Successful Retail Destination    The way to draw customers to your store in good or bad economic times is to craft your business so that shoppers can’t experience it anywhere else. Jon Schallert, retail expert, consultant and founder of Destination BootCamp, offers many tips for creating a successful retail destination. The...    more...  
  • 5 Tips for Making Social Media Connections    Creating relationships is essential for making social media marketing effective, profitable and worth your time as a business owner. Melissa Galt, social media marketing expert and author of Social Networking Success Manual: Find Profit and Perfect Prospects with Tools and Shortcuts on Social...    more...  
  • Social Media 101: Ready, Set, Go!    Social Media 101: Ready, Set, Go! So you’ve heard about promoting your store on Facebook and Twitter but haven’t committed because you don’t have the time? Melissa Galt, social media marketing expert and author of Social Networking Success Manual: Find Profit and Perfect Prospects with Tools and Shortcuts on Social Networks ,...    more...  
  • 5 Types Of Customer Objections    Customers can be dissatisfied with the retail sales process for a number of reasons, says Lynne Peer, owner/president of South Carolina-based Peer Resource Group, who identifies five types of customer objections.    more...  
  • Are Your Sales Strategies Working?    Are Your Sales Strategies Working? Understanding the selling process, customer needs and dealing with dissatisfied customers isn't the retailing cakewalk that some store owners imagine. This month, contributing editor Sharon Bopp discusses these important topics with Lynne Peer, owner/president of South Carolina-based Peer...    more...  
  • Does Your Biz Have A Wow Factor?    Does Your Biz Have A Wow Factor? When you and your store have that "wow" factor, your unique signature style puts you on the map and makes your shop a household name. This month Robyn Spizman, New York Times best-selling author, co-founder of TheGiftionary.com, TV and radio personality and chief visionary officer of...    more...  
  • Create Alliances Within Your Community    To help boost your store's "wow" factor, don't forget the importance of creating alliances with community members, says Robyn Spizman, New York Times best-selling author. Here, Robyn suggests alliances that can increase your chances for success—starting in your own back yard!    more...  
  • Stepping Out Of The "Sales Box"    When it comes to selling, "boxes are for suckers," says Scott Ginsberg, author, speaker, consultant and entrepreneur. Instead, he suggests stepping out of the sales cubicle and telling unique stories that enable customers to buy your products.    more...  
  • Are You—And Your Biz—Approachable?    Want to create attention that draws customers into your store, send the message that you and your staff are approachable, and entice buyers with unique sales strategies and killer sales questions? For answers to these questions, Contributing Editor Sharon Bopp recently talked to Scott Ginsberg,...    more...  
  • Expert Pinpoints Key Macrotrends    Expert Pinpoints Key Macrotrends Instead of asking what's the next big thing for 2010, former Target exec Robyn Waters suggests that retailers ask what's going on in customers' hearts and minds.    more...  
  • The Power Of Continuing Education    Want to help ensure your retail operation runs in the black? Place an emphasis on continuing education! Read on, as Robyn Waters, president of RW Trend LLC, discusses the knowledge (and earnings) that can be gained by reading—and by sharing what you've learned with your staff. Waters is former...    more...  
  • Offering A Minority Stake In Your Biz    For retailers on the track to expansion, a minority stake in your store can prove attractive to would-be managers. Andy Buyting, owner of two Green Village Home & Garden stores in New Brunswick, Canada and author of The Retailer's Roadmap to Success, discusses the opportunity to bring managing...    more...  
  • Letting Go—And Growing Your Biz    Letting Go—And Growing Your Biz Know how important it is to loosen your grip on the management reins so you can focus on growing your business, but just can't step away from the lead position? Andy Buyting, owner of Green Village Home & Garden in New Brunswick, Canada and author of The Retailer's Roadmap to Success,...    more...  
  • Got Fashion? Consider These Ideas    Got Fashion? Consider These Ideas Fashion accessories remain a "great choice for gift shops" because of their high markup potential and the fact that these impulse items rarely have to be put on sale, notes T.J. Reid, Louisiana-based editor of the Fashion Advantage newsletter and retail consultant to the fashion and gift...    more...  
  • How To Play The    Here, fashion maven T.J. Reid, editor of the Fashion Advantage newsletter and retail consultant to the fashion and gift industries, explains a unique promotion called the "Name Game."    more...  
  • Recession Chic: The New Paradigm    Recession Chic: The New Paradigm Want to get your store revved up and ready to go for fourth quarter? Here, Lynni Megginson, author of "The Absolutely Essential Guide to Planning Fabulous Retail Events: Recession Chic Edition (released in June 2009) and owner and principal of Maryland-based L&M Designs, discusses techniques for...    more...  
  • Creating Buzz-Worthy Events    Want to make extra sure that your store event is budget friendly—and the buzz creator that you envision? Follow these tips from uber store event planner Lynni Megginson, author of The Absolutely Essential Guide to Planning Fabulous Retail Events: Recession Chic Edition and owner and principal...    more...  
  • How To Bring Fun Into The Workplace    As a store owner, do you buy into the idea that you and your employees can mix fun and work? If so, read on as Bob Pike, chairman/CEO of Bob Pike Group, a Minnesota-based training and performance improvement consultancy—and co-author of the newly released book The Fun Minute Manager, discusses...    more...  
  • Want Productivity To Rise? Try Fun!    Want Productivity To Rise? Try Fun! If fun becomes part of your work environment, do you worry that staffers will become slackers who aren't focused on the job at hand? Not so, declares Bob Pike, chairman/CEO of Bob Pike Group, a Minnesota-based training and performance improvement consultancy—and co-author of the newly released...    more...  
  • Creating A Successful Facebook Account    OK, you've created a Facebook account and officially entered the world of social media marketing. Now, how do you make that account improve customer loyalty, boost sales and more? Read on, as Roy Prevost, president of Oakray Marketing Services Ltd., offers suggestions for creating a successful...    more...  
  • Social Networking: Time To Join In!    Social Networking: Time To Join In! Posts, tweets, social networking and more. Whatever does it all mean—and how can it positively impact your business? Read on, as Roy Prevost, president of British Columbia-based Oakray Marketing Services Ltd and a marketing consultant helping small businesses compete in the big-box retail world,...    more...  
  • Using The Internet To Your Advantage    Know you should be using the Internet to your business advantage, but haven't yet done so? Tom Ungrodt, president/CEO of Michigan-based Ideation, Inc. gift catalog company, urges small retailers to employ a multichannel approach that includes a brick and mortar operation, marketing and a Web...    more...  
  • Retail Veteran Shares Savvy Biz Tips    Retail Veteran Shares Savvy Biz Tips Ready to hear from someone who bears better news about the gift sector? Tom Ungrodt works both sides of the industry fence - he's president/CEO of Michigan-based Ideation, Inc. gift catalog company, a firm that also operates three gift stores in the Ann Arbor area. Here, Ungrodt talks to...    more...  
  • Profiting From Retail As "Theater"    Profiting From Retail As If all the world's a stage, retail has the role of leading lady! According to Chris Hite, principal of Texas-based HITE advertising and brand consulting, a store's promotional calendar is its script, while visual merchandising sets the stage, the store owner and associates serve as cast members...    more...  
  • The "Village Idiot" Management Theory & More    How in the world could a "village idiot" be the secret to keeping your store looking fresh and fabulous for customers? Chris Hite, principal of Texas-based HITE advertising and brand consulting, discusses a management theory that will give you renewed perspective for every season of the sales year.    more...  
  • Expert Shares Savvy Display Tips    Want your store displays to look as "tight and fluid" as those seen in big retailers like Anthropologie, Z Gallerie and Target? Read on, as Michelle Teele, owner of L.A.-based design and merchandising firm Bird's Eye View, shares her insider's expertise on a variety of merchandising topics. Then,...    more...  
  • Where This Display Expert Finds Inspiration    When it comes to displays that wow, it takes a lot to impress Michelle Teele. With a merchandising background at Z Gallerie and Anthropologie and as current owner of L.A.-based design and merchandising firm Bird's Eye View, Teele shares some of her favorite merchandisers with Giftbeat readers....    more...  
  • Are You Banking Safe And Smart?    As retailers deal with challenges of cash flow, working capital and declining revenues, it's important to address the financial issues that can help your store stay more stable as others falter. Giftbeat contributing editor Sharon Bopp recently discussed "financials" with William Wen, a...    more...  
  • Saving For Retailing's Rainy Days    Into each store owner's life, some rain must fall. Lately that precipitation has mounted to record levels. Below, William Wen, a Seattle-based personal banker with U.S. Bank and owner of The Papery in Edmonds, WA, discusses goals for saving for retailing's current and future rainy days.    more...  
  • The Benefits Of Online Networking    Business networking sites are also excellent tools for boosting a store owner's retailing know-how. Lynn Switanowski-Barrett, founder of the Boston-based retail consulting firm Creative Business Consulting Group, talks about the benefits offered by various business-oriented online destinations.    more...  
  • Embracing Social Networking Sites    Embracing Social Networking Sites Have you embraced 21st century Internet technology and begun using the Web's social networking sites to expand your customer base? If not, you're putting your business behind the eight ball, says Lynn Switanowski-Barrett, founder of the Boston-based retail consulting firm Creative Business...    more...  
  • Tackling A New Year...With Wisdom    Tackling A New Year...With Wisdom Yes, Virginia, your store is feeling the effects of a stalling economy. And it's likely you're worried about fourth-quarter sales. Nonetheless, there will still be a Christmas season--and a new year to come. So, what's a store owner to do? This month, Denny Nisch, national sales manager for...    more...  
  • Buying And Pricing For Profit    As 2009 fast approaches and the winter markets are about to open, Denny Nisch, national sales manager for Kansas-based Palmer Marketing Direct, offers suggestions for buying, displaying and pricing product.    more...  
  • Ready To Rethink And Refocus?    Ready To Rethink And Refocus? It's enough to disillusion even the most confident of retailers: Not only has the structure of the business world changed with today's global market but the sagging economy is being blamed for causing store traffic counts and sales receipts to free fall. Sam Geist, president of Markham,...    more...  
  • Are You Tapping All Your Resources?    So, what's a retailer to do when the economic chips are down? Throw in the towel, or become even more determined to make his or her business succeed? If you're in the "survive-and-thrive" category, read on as Sam Geist, president of Markham, Ontario-based Geist & Associates Inc., entrepreneur,...    more...  
  • The Importance Of Your Email Signature    If you've spent time and money developing a website, don't forget to plug it everywhere you can! Here, C S Wurzberger, founder and president of Massachusetts-based Neuland Business Campus and an accomplished Internet marketing specialist, retail marketing expert, and seminar and workshop leader,...    more...  
  • Website Design: How To Stand Out    Website Design: How To Stand Out What you don't know about designing brochure and e-commerce websites can hurt you. Don't get left in e-tailing's cyberspace dust! This month, contributing editor Sharon Bopp talks marketing plans, site costs, user-friendly design tips and keyword development with C S Wurzberger, founder and...    more...  
  • A "Visual Merchandising 101" Refresher    Need a refresher course on your 'Visual Merchandising 101' skills? Retail consultant and visual merchandising specialist Donna Kent "hits the chalkboard" to remind you of five important, but often forgotten, tips for successful merchandising.    more...  
  • Does Your Store Need A Facelift?    Does Your Store Need A Facelift? Take a deep breath—it's almost time to roll out those fourth-quarter displays that will get your store register cha-ching-ing! Before you do, retail consultant and visual merchandising specialist Donna Kent provides tips for budget-friendly store facelifts, finding props "on the cheap," visual...    more...  
  • Marketing: Make It A Top Priority!    Marketing: Make It A Top Priority! You know marketing is key to business success—and that much of the publicity you generate can cost little or nothing. So why leave marketing tasks simmering on your store's back burner? Shirley Frazier, gift and gourmet industry specialist and president of New Jersey-based Sweet Survival,...    more...  
  • Tips For "Page-Turning" Newsletters    Looking to ensure that your snail mail or email newsletters are real "page turners"? And that the breaking news you're delivering to customers will keep them shopping your store? Shirley Frazier, gift and gourmet industry specialist and president of Sweet Survival, offers these smart...    more...  
  • Are You Ready For E-Commerce?    Are You Ready For E-Commerce? Have you been trying to decide if it's time to leverage your brick-and-mortar business by developing an e-commerce website? A recent Forrester Research study estimates that e-commerce sales will reach $204 billion this year - and skyrocket another 65 percent, to $334 billion in 2012!    more...  
  • Make Online Security A Top Priority    Online security is a top priority for e-commerce consumers. Read on, as Thomas Harpointner, CEO of Atlanta-based AIS Media, Inc., a leading interactive marketing and web services company, discusses trust-boosting features such as security seals and privacy policies.    more...  
  • How To Neutralize The Competition    Want to leave your retailing competition in the proverbial dust? If so, you'll need to outpace their efforts by increasing yours, establishing and building your store's brand, and more. Take a deep breath, roll up your retailing sleeves and get ready to work harder than ever before, as speakers,...    more...  
  • Are You Ready To Re-Invent Yourself?    In today's retailing world, it's not invention that is a necessity, it's re-invention! Read on, as speakers, authors and consultants Georganne Bender and Rich Kizer of Illinois-based KIZER & BENDER SPEAKING! discuss how to recognize your store's uniqueness and formulate steps that will...    more...  
  • Events—With A Twist Of "Fresh"    Events—With A Twist Of Stuck at the starting gate because the pace of traffic and sales has slowed at your store? It's time to put the pedal to the metal and add a creative spin to your store events while keeping your attitude upbeat, says Lynni Megginson, author of "The Absolutely Essential Guide to Planning Fabulous...    more...  
  • Use "Wonder Words" In Your Invites    Non-dreary, exceptionally cheery language is the key to writing invitations to store events that your customers simply can't resist! Here, Lynni Megginson, author and retailer extraordinaire, shares her list of "Wonder Words" that—what else?—work wonders when interspersed in your invitations!    more...  
  • Giving Kudos To Employees    Remember to give your employees kudos and acknowledge the important role they play in making your business a success, says Chester Elton, coauthor of The New York Times best seller, "The Carrot Principle: How the Best Managers Use Recognition to Engage Their People, Retain Talent, and Accelerate...    more...  
  • Want More Sales? Think Carrots!    Want More Sales? Think Carrots! Ever forget to be civil, kind—and complimentary—to your employees in the crush of business and the need to turn profits. Find out how to create a business-boosting and people-pleasing "Carrot Culture" in your retail environment.    more...  
  • Are You Using Signage Properly?    Are You Using Signage Properly? Think signage has a minimal impact on how product moves in your store? Think again. "Studies show that a piece of merchandise that is signed will outperform another by as much as 40%," notes Rick Segel, retail expert, author and president of Florida-based Segel & Associates.    more...  
  • Conducting A Sign Audit    Conducting A Sign Audit Want to make sure you're taking the best possible advantage of the power of signage? Rick Segel, retail expert, author and president of Florida-based Segel & Associates, discusses the ins and outs of "sign audits"—a powerful retailing tool that can increase business, create happier customers and...    more...  
  • The Four "I's" Of Merchandising    The Four Did you know that the word "merchandising" is spelled with more than two I's? Speaker and consultant Lisa Duncan of Duncan & Duncan Enterprises does—and shares these I's with store owners in her seminar called "The Art of Retailing – A Peddler with Panache™." As a third-generation retailer and...    more...  
  • Does Your Store's Look Match Your Store Image?    Your store's appearance should be a direct reflection of your retailing image and the customers you target, says Lisa Duncan, speaker, retail consultant and president of Duncan & Duncan Enterprises. Whether your style is high-end mountain retreat, country, beachy or contemporary, these...    more...  
  • 10 Goal-Setting Strategies    Want to become a "goal-achieving machine" in 2008? "Goal Guru" Jill Koenig, best-selling author, coach and expert on the subject of goal- setting, provides 10 strategies for setting challenging goals, defining the targets, tasks and time needed to achieve them, and savoring your success as those...    more...  
  • Goal-Setting: Expert Leads The Way    Goal-Setting: Expert Leads The Way Goal setting should play a huge role in every retailer's repertoire of business-building talents. But it's so easy to put off what seems like a daunting task, and to let go of goals once they're made. Don't despair! "Goal Guru" Jill Koenig, best-selling author, coach and expert on the subject of...    more...  
  • Are You A Guerrilla Marketer?    Are You A Guerrilla Marketer? If you're always on the lookout for ways to promote your business – especially those that keep you ahead of the competition and can be done on the cheap – it's likely you're a fan of Jay Conrad Levinson, the" father of guerrilla marketing." This month, Levinson talked to contributing editor...    more...  
  • The Power Of The Number 8    According to Jay Conrad Levinson, the "father of guerrilla marketing," there's marketing power in the number 8. Read on, as he talks about consumer buying habits—and how a modern-day spin on a traditional Yellow Pages ad can help build your business.    more...  
  • How To Make Your Open House Memorable    Former California store owner and popular seminar speaker Sue Kirby is a big believer in Christmas open houses. "A Christmas open house is a celebration and thank-you to customers that tells them you think they're great. It creates a buzz among your customers and helps set you up for the most...    more...  
  • Revving Up For Fourth Quarter!    Revving Up For Fourth Quarter! Don't just hope that your October, November and December will be successful. Plan on it! Former California destination store owner and popular seminar speaker Sue Kirby offers advice and tips to lay the groundwork for an exciting and profitable fourth-quarter selling season.    more...  
  • Holiday Color Combos That Pop    Want to know what holiday color combinations will make your store displays pop and help get customers in a buying mood this Christmas season? Read on, as Chris Tkachuck, Midwest's director of visual display, reveals 2007's hottest Yuletide shades.    more...  
  • Ready For Holiday Displays? Expert Shares Tips    Ready For Holiday Displays? Expert Shares Tips Want to help ensure that your store's Christmas displays show off—and sell through—your holiday-themed merchandise? Midwest's director of visual display shares some of her top merchandising tips.    more...  
  • Fine-Tuning Your Sales Techniques    Fine-Tuning Your Sales Techniques Does your store lose sales because your employees (and you!) are afraid to hear the word "no"? Have you "serviced" your customers but missed a $20 sale, or the chance to turn it into a $75 sale? This month, Andrea Waltz, co-owner of Portland-based Courage Crafters Inc, discusses selling styles...    more...  
  • Sell Up, Down, Across, Sideways    What retailer isn't looking for strategies for turning a single sale into a multiple one? Here, Andrea Waltz, co-owner of Portland-based Courage Crafters Inc., offers suggestions for "selling up" to your customers. Waltz's consulting firm teaches organizations how to achieve breakthrough...    more...  
  • A Moment Of Magic...Or Misery?    When handled incorrectly, a store's response to website blunders—like missing expiration dates on its printable coupons—can severely undermine customer service efforts. Rick Segel, principal at Florida-based Rick Segel & Associates, a firm specializing in retail marketing and retail sales...    more...  
  • Website 101 With Expert Rick Segel    Website 101 With Expert Rick Segel Want to learn what makes a store website unappealing—and how to fix it so it will attract visitors and turn them into customers? Rick Segel, principal at Florida-based Rick Segel & Associates, a firm specializing in retail marketing and retail sales training, talks about the components of a...    more...  
  • Interviewing Job Candidates? Consider These Questions    Superior customer service is all about attitude—and there's no better time to determine an employee's service mindset than during the interview process. Chip Bell, customer service consultant, speaker and co-author of the newly released, "Managing Knock Your Socks Off Customer Service (2nd...    more...  
  • Is Your Customer Service World-Class?    Is Your Customer Service World-Class? World-class customer service isn't just a buzz phrase—it produces real results such as increased profit margins and super-loyal customers. Contributing editor Sharon Bopp recently discussed this topic with Chip Bell, customer service consultant, speaker and co-author of the newly released,...    more...  
  • T.J. Reid Says: It's Time To Promote!    T.J. Reid Says: It's Time To Promote! Looking for ideas for profit-boosting promotions, especially those that showcase your assortment of fashion accessories? This month, contributing editor Sharon Bopp talks promotions and more with T.J. Reid, author of the recently released "What Mother Told Ya About Promotions," editor of Fashion...    more...  
  • A Summer Sweepstakes Promotion    Want to make an investment in drawing traffic to your store during summer's slow months? Learn how from T.J. Reid, author of the recently released "What Mother Told Ya About Promotions," editor of Fashion Advantage newsletter and retail consultant to the fashion and gift industries.    more...  
  • Selling Gift Certificates In Store...And On Your Web Site    It's a smart idea to sell gift certificates both in your store and on your Web site, notes Toni Ivey, president and co-owner of Georgia-based OmegaNet, Inc. The firm is an Internet specialist for the gift industry and the designer of more than 200 e-commerce Web sites for wholesalers.    more...  
  • No Web Site? Expert Has Solution    No Web Site? Expert Has Solution Having a Web site for your gift store is no longer a luxury, it is a necessity, says Toni Ivey of OmegaNet, Inc. Whatever size and style you choose, Ivey adds, the time for establishing a Web site is now!    more...  
  • Expert Shares Creative Display Tips    Expert Shares Creative Display Tips Want to learn a few tricks of the display designer's trade? Rei Diaz, creative director for Miami-based DISPLAYWORKS, Inc., a firm specializing in retail and showroom design and visual merchandising for the gift and home decor industries, talks about creativity, color, props and winter-to-spring...    more...  
  • Proper Lighting Is Key    The understanding and proper usage of store lighting sets the stage for showcasing the stars of your retail operation — your products. Rei Diaz, creative director for Miami-based DISPLAYWORKS, Inc., a firm specializing in retail and showroom design and visual merchandising for the gift and home...    more...  
  • Why "Space" Open-To-Buy Is Best    Why Why fuss with a complicated "dollar" open-to-buy system when a "space" open-to-buy system simplifies the buying process and helps eliminate overbuying? Giftbeat turned to Denny Nisch, national sales manager for Kansas-based Palmer Marketing Direct, for ideas on implementing a space-based system.    more...  
  • Tackling A New Year With New Tools    Tackling A New Year With New Tools Want to learn more about the four Ps of retailing? Read on, as Denny Nisch, national sales manager for Kansas-based Palmer Marketing Direct, discusses these tools and other smart strategies for increasing store revenues.    more...  
  • At The Scarlet Tassel, It's All About Home    At The Scarlet Tassel, It's All About Home Just two years after its launch, Atlanta's gift, home decor and accent furniture store The Scarlet Tassel was named one of the country’s 50 Retail Stars by Home Accents Today. Owners Shelly Dozier-McKee and Deirdre Staab were naturally thrilled but didn’t see it as an “overnight success.”    more...  
  • Expert Shares Key European Trends    Expert Shares Key European Trends Want the inside scoop on consumer lifestyle trends from a team of experts who get their information from Europe's shops, showrooms, trade fairs and fashion shows? So did Giftbeat, which is why we talked to Jennifer Castoldi, CEO/Chief Creative Director of Trendease International at her creative...    more...  
  • Are You Ready For A Bug Invasion?    From her creative office in Paris, Jennifer Castoldi, CEO/Chief Creative Director of Trendease International, reveals a very "buggy" trend for 2007 and beyond.    more...  
  • 2007 Palette Ties Into Key Lifestyle Trends    2007 Palette Ties Into Key Lifestyle Trends Looking for the colors that will add pizzazz to your store in the new year? Take an insider's look at Cotton Incorporated's 2007 forecast of color and trends for the home with Dana Poor, the firm's New York City-based manager of home trend forecasting.    more...  
  • Are You Ready For The New Consumer?    Are You Ready For The New Consumer? Want to learn about the lifestyle and trend directions that help large companies see the future of consuming – before their competition does? Read on, as Mechele Flaum, president of Marketing Fire, a New York City-based creative marketing consultancy, discusses current and developing consumer...    more...  
  • Are You Thirsty For Customers?    Companies spend millions of dollars each year to entice you to spend your money with them. They give away millions more trying to win you back after they screw up. I have never figured out why people try to earn your business – and then give mediocre service.    more...  
  • Are You Ready To Wow Customers?    Are You Ready To Wow Customers? You and your employees have the largest single impact on selling to, retaining and growing the number of loyal customers who will "talk you up" to those they know.    more...  
  • Preparing For After-Christmas Sales    Yes, it's hectic, but your post-Christmas customers will be clamoring for fresh, new product – and you must deliver the goods!    more...  
  • Holiday Merchandising: Do's & Don'ts    Holiday Merchandising: Do's & Don'ts The timing, ambiance and placement of Christmas-themed displays are key elements in ensuring a successful fourth quarter. Are your displays up to snuff? Debi Ward Kennedy, visual designer, shares the do's and don'ts of holiday merchandising.    more...  
  • Fast & Easy Biz-Building Strategies    It's time to lace up your retail running shoes and get ready for that all-important fourth quarter! Now's the time for your business performance levels to be at their peak – and they can be if you implement some of Bob Negen's savvy business-building strategies.    more...  
  • Personal Service Is Great Service    Your number one customer service advantage is the personal relationship you build with your customers. And there is no better way to strengthen that relationship than to use your customers' names.    more...  
  • How To Motivate Employees Through Recognition    For centuries, businesspeople have known that recognition is a key factor in keeping people motivated. How many people do we know who work in the public eye for very little money because of the amount of recognition that they get? There are many ways of showing somebody recognition, and I think...    more...  
  • Your Big-Box Edge? Superior Service!    Your Big-Box Edge? Superior Service! Want to learn more about prospering in a world of big boxes? Read on, as Roy Prevost, president of British Columbia-based Oakray Marketing Services Ltd. and author of the soon-to-be-released eBook, "Competing with a 700 Pound Gorilla," talks to contributing editor Sharon Bopp about servicing and...    more...  
  • How To Motivate Employees--Better!    Know you should be motivating and rewarding your employees but somehow never get around to it? Make those changes-–and reap the benefits of improved employee retention--with this advice from author Carol A. Hacker, president of Atlanta-based Carol A. Hacker & Associates, a management consulting...    more...  
  • Free Or Low-Cost Motivational Ideas For Employees    Who says you have to drop a chunk of change to keep your employees laughing and inspired? Here, Carol A. Hacker, president of Atlanta-based management consulting and seminar company Carol A. Hacker & Associates, offers suggestions to ensure staffers stay enthused about working at your store.    more...  
  • How To Motivate Employees--Better!    Know you should be motivating and rewarding your employees but somehow never get around to it? Make those changes--and reap the benefits--with advice from this expert.    more right  
  • Hosting Company Checklist    Before selecting a hosting company for your Web site, make sure you cover all the bases, from speed of the Internet connection to security. This checklist will help keep you on track.    more...  
  • Adding "Oomph" To Your Web Site    Adding Today, store Web sites are as important as Yellow Pages ads. Don't think of them solely as the domain of retailers wanting to sell goods online. So says Steve Veltkamp, president of BizShop.com, a business startup and Internet consulting firm. Here, he discusses ways to drive more traffic to your...    more...  
  • Making Your Partnership A Success    Making Your Partnership A Success If you have a business partner, do you want to increase the odds that your retail operation will succeed? Frank, ongoing discussions about growth strategies, culture and conflict management are the pillars of a good partner-based organization, notes Jim Clemmer, best-selling author, coach,...    more...  
  • Leaders Are Learned Optimists    Effective leaders are "unreasonable" optimists. Optimists refuse to live in "the real world." They live in a world of hope and possibilities. They see an opportunity in every calamity. The pessimist sees a calamity in every opportunity. Optimists excite and arouse others to action by helping them...    more...  
  • Ready To Motivate Your Employees?    Ready To Motivate Your Employees? As a gift retailer, Sue Kirby beat the odds, transforming a pint-sized store in a less than desirable location into a Southern California shopping destination. She credits her staff with playing a key role in that success. As a professional speaker, Kirby now shares her retailing experience,...    more...  
  • Gearing Up For Fourth-Quarter Events    Marketing doesn’t have to be intimidating or costly. Giftbeat turned to Karen Jacobson and Julie Trautwein, partners in Chicago-based KJ Marketing & Design, an integrated marketing services firm specializing in the home decor industry, for a refresher course on marketing, with an emphasis on...    more...  
  • Creating A Buzz Factor With Special Events    Creating A Buzz Factor With Special Events Sure, every small retailer knows that store events boost sales and profits – but many never plan beyond an annual Christmas open house! Lynni Megginson, retailer and author of the newly released “The Absolutely Essential Guide to Planning Fabulous Retails Events!”, is here to remind you that...    more...  
  • Using Five Senses Makes    Using Five Senses Makes Every gift store has a unique identity, or personality, that boosts the value of its merchandise in the eyes of customers. The five senses play a big role in establishing that identity. This month, Natalie Tan, president of Vancouver-based Retail Excellence Consulting, a firm that helps retailers...    more...  
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Categories were tracking
In This Month’s
Giftbeat

  • $15 Or More, Cost
  • Signs/Plaques
  • Personal Care
  • Candles
  • Message Jewelry
  • Apparel
  • Kitchen-Related
  • Men's Gifts

TRENDING NOW:
Functional gifts reign for the holiday season, with hot sellers such as towels, tumblers, scarves, socks and soaps topping the charts.

* Every month Giftbeat tracks sales in a a variety of product categories – more than 70 categories throughout the year. SIGN UP NOW to receive this vital information on which gift items are moving off store shelves.