Blog Posted In Business, Marketing

The Importance Of Visual Branding


By | source: Sep 18th, 2020

Your brand has numerous elements, all playing an essential role in conveying your core message to consumers, and none more so than your visual identity.

It's because visual branding is the most effective way of capturing your target audience's attention, and as images stay stored in our memory for years, they're also essential for building brand recognition.

As consumers gravitate further away from the traditional written content and move towards visual advertising, brands must know how to implement a consistent visual branding strategy if they want audiences to notice them. Consistency also creates familiarity, and this is what builds the trust between a brand and its community.

But how do you find the perfect visuals, ones that accurately reflect your written content, and most importantly, your brand's voice and core beliefs?

1. Know your brand voice and set the tone

Every visual you promote has to relate to your brand's voice; think of it as your DNA. It's only when you have your voice can set the tone of your visual branding. By doing so, you can apply it to everything you do, ensuring that all your content, especially your visuals, are connected.

Get this right, and viewers will instantly know the brand they're interacting with, and that element of trust will build.

Here are some strategies for finding and maintaining your voice:

  • Start by creating a brand voice chart: An essential tool for ensuring that your content consistently uses the same voice.
  • Review all your content to date: Are there any examples that could have come from a competitor? If so, remove them. You want content that's unique to your brand; then build on it.
  • Describe your brand in three words: These are your core values.
  • Describe your brand as a person: What's their personality?
  • Update your voice chart regularly.
  • Make sure your writers and visual designers are tuned into your DNA and know-how to implement it.

You can't fake your voice, or to be more precise, you shouldn't, because today's online consumers want authenticity; it's what replaces that lack of tactility; it's also why they'll trust to use your brand.

2. Your logo requires special attention

Think of three major brands that you use. Did their logos appear in your mind?

Logos may be small, but their importance is unmeasurable.

It's because they are a summary of your brand and what it stands for.

A logo has milliseconds to engage the viewer, connect on an emotional level, and convey your brand's ethos! So, the type (Wordmark, Icon, Combination), the style (traditional, modern, minimalistic, bold), and the colors, fonts, and shapes you choose must all work together in getting your message across.

Here are some tips on how to start designing your logo:

  • Find inspiration for your design: Look at the leading brands in your market place; odds are they've done their research.
  • Decide on your design style: It's related to your voice. Are you a fun-loving or formal type brand? Do you sell surfboards or insurance? Choose a style that fits your voice.
  • Choose a logotype: You have three main choices (A Combination logotype – which can contain your name, a slogan, and an image. A Wordmark logotype – your name. And an Icon logotype – an image)
  • Give color a lot of thought: The design rule with logos is simplicity; this also applies to color. Great logos use no more than three; two is even better; also, the color you use will convey its own unique subliminal message, so it's advisable to research color psychology before you decide.
  • Use fonts that suit your voice: Just like color; you want to minimize your fonts; again, two is what works best. Using contrasting fonts for your name and slogan helps make your logo grab the viewer`s attention.

An excellent way of finding inspiration and designing a logo is by using one of the various companies, such as Tailor Brands or DesignCrowd, that lets you get a logo online. These innovative AI logo makers already know which designs, colors, and fonts work for each market and save you both time and money.

Whichever logotype, style, colors, or fonts you choose, they all have to be versatile (work for both online and offline on numerous materials) and scalable (so it looks just as good on your website header and your social media avatar).

3. Choose the right colors for your brand

An excellent way of giving your visual branding a distinct style is by choosing a color palette that suits your voice.

All markets have a range of colors that suit them; however, you can distinguish yourself from your competitors and create that all-important visual identity by carefully choosing a palette that your competitors aren't using.

Palettes generally have three primary and three secondary colors, giving you all the colors you need for creating a distinct and cohesive feel to your visual branding. A pro tip is to start with one color that suits your core voice and then find its related palette.

When choosing your palette, consider the emotions and feelings you want them to convey, as color is often the first visual viewers see. When asked, 85% of consumers said color to be the main driving factor when choosing a product, and 92% believe visual appearance to be the biggest motivator for giving their allegiance to a brand!

Fortunately, there's a proven method for finding the right color for your visual branding:

  • First and foremost, research color psychology, so you know the message each color sends.
  • Research your market; everyone has a color palette or at least two primary colors proven to connect with their target audience.
  • Next, look at your main competitors, find those primary colors.
  • Now make your color palette unique by identifying your brand's essence.
  • Finally, test your palette across all your branding strategies.

4. Create your identity with images

It pays to be mindful of all the images you use and not just your infographics.

But let's first talk about infographics:

Infographics are being used more today than ever before due to their visual impact. A consumer will learn more about your brand from a well laid out infographic than pages of content, and as most consumers now skim read, the only way to grab their attention is by using attention-grabbing graphics.

However, they're just a part of the general strategy of visual branding!

You also need to consider other equally essential visuals for your branding to work at an optimum level.

Here's where images have a starring role:

Images are now a driving factor in e-commerce, and brands need to embrace them in every way possible.

Consider Instagram for a moment. Brands are creating communities based on the high-quality images they're posting, but it's not just Instagram where they're needed!

Almost every social media platform now considers images as an essential element in any brand's advertising campaign.

But you must also use the same high-quality images on your website, merchandise, icons, and avatars; by doing so, you'll create consistency throughout your visual branding.

5. Choose fonts that speak your customer's language

Keep an eye on your fonts as they can have an impact on how your target audience and community perceive your brand. It's because every audience has their style of language, and your fonts must speak it.

You can find the perfect fonts for your brand by choosing ones that reflect its message and values; this, in turn, will attract the kind of customers that are right for you.

As with color, try to use no more than two font types as this helps build that all-important continuity.

Some tips for finding and using the right fonts:

  • Bold clean fonts work best for titles, headings, subheadings, and your call to action. They also attract the viewer's attention to what's most important.
  • Choose ones that suit your brand's voice and help to communicate its personality.
  • Only use fonts that are versatile and work on all platforms.
  • Ensure that they are legible at all scales.
  • Be as unique as possible.

Are you ready to get your brand on?

Trying to design your visual branding alone can be a daunting and confusing task, so don't!

There's a wealth of high-quality online information available, and you can find almost everything you need for creating high-quality infographics and eye-popping visuals.

You can also reach out and collaborate with designers; these can be hired on a task by task basis. But of course, you first want to build the design relationship so any team you use knows your brand's DNA and how you want to show it to the world.

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Blog Posted In

History Of Baccarat


By | source: Nov 26th, 2020

Whether you choose to play at home or at a casino, online or using a physical deck of cards, there are literally dozens of different card games you can learn. While some have practically disappeared with the sands of time, others, like poker or blackjack, have been around for hundreds of years and seem to get more popular with each new generation of players. 

 

Baccarat is a game that lies somewhere between these two, and its popularity has gone through peaks and troughs over time. The game is easy to play, and the set-up and gameplay are ideally suited to the online world. As a result, it is one of the most popular games to play in online casinos right now, and sites like playbaccarat.xyz provide new players with all the strategy tips they might need. But how did we arrive at this position? Let’s take a look back at the history of this intriguing game. 

 

Italian origins and Macao

 

Tracing the very beginning of a game is always difficult, as each game is inspired by something else, and you can effectively go back and back through that evolution of inspirations. Most sources, such as that fount of all knowledge Wikipedia, will tell you that baccarat was first played around 200 years ago in France. The truth is a little more complex.

 

The Italian game of Macao involves trying to make a total of nine, and some people even refer to it informally as Italian Baccarat. However, it could be more accurate to call baccarat French Macao, as there are records of the game being played by Austro-Hungarian soldiers in the mid 18th century. 

 

Even older inspirations

 

Yet there are some who believe the history of baccarat can be traced back even further. The concept of getting a score as close as possible to nine is core to two games that date back to ancient times. The first is Pai Gow, a dominos-type game that originates in China. Pai Gow literally translates as “make nine,” and the game is still popular in casinos in Asia to this day. 

 

The second link goes back to Ancient Rome. Traditionally, vestal virgins would cast dice and the result would indicate the strength of their faith and their destiny. The best score was eight or nine, meaning she was destined to be a high priestess. Six or seven meant she was not cut out to be a vestal virgin, while any other number, in the typically dramatic style of the times, meant she must walk out into the sea and drown herself. 

 

The similarities with the basic precepts of baccarat are plain to see. Nine is the ideal number, and the further you are from it, the worse the result. However, we can only speculate as to how much influence this Ancient Roman tradition, as well as the game of Pai Gow, had on the creation of baccarat. What we know for sure is that baccarat was first referred to by name in France in the early 1800s, so that is where the trail leads us next. 

baccarat

French baccarat – evolution and revolution

 

Unlike vingt et un, which became modern blackjack, there is little mention of baccarat being played in the pre-revolutionary days, although the game almost certainly existed back in the 18th century. Yet there is not the same history of it being played by the idle rich is the halls of Versailles. The game only became fashionable in the new republic, and in the 1830s, two versions, Chemin de Fer and En Banque emerged. 

 

The first translates as “railway” and remains the most popular version of baccarat in France to this day. The name dates the game with some accuracy, as France opened its first railway in 1832, and this marvel of transportation was being discussed across the nation in the early 1830s. The second version of baccarat evolved into the “punto banco” version of the game that is played in the USA. The two variations are not drastically different, and you can find out more about them in this player’s guide. 

 

Baccarat in the USA

 

In 1871, the New York Times painted its readers a picture of the Long Branch clubhouse, where visitors “flocked around the baccarat board.” That is the first reference to the game being played in America. Fast forward to 1899, and there is a report in the New York Times of 20 Frenchmen being arrested for playing baccarat in what must have been a highly dramatic gambling bust. 

 

These anecdotes disprove the popular theory that baccarat was introduced to the USA in 1911, and demonstrate beyond question that the game reached American shores some time in the mid to late 1800s. Yet despite having clearly been around for half a century, the game was not specifically mentioned in Assembly Bill 98, which legalized gambling in 1931. 

 

When Las Vegas began to take on a life of its own, The Sands was the first casino to offer baccarat on The Strip, when it opened its doors in 1958. Yet the Chemin de Fer on offer failed to capture the imagination. By the 1960s, Punto Banco had gained popularity thanks to Tommy Renzoni, who actually imported the game from Argentina. This is the variation that remains most popular to this day.

 

Renzoni is often credited as the man who brought baccarat to the masses, but he had more than a little marketing help from across the pond. In 1953, UK author Ian Fleming penned a certain novel that would secure the game of baccarat’s place in popular culture. 

 

Popular appeal and the most famous baccarat game ever

 

In Casino Royale, we are introduced for the first time to James Bond. His mission is to take on criminal kingpin Le Chiffre at the baccarat table of an exclusive casino, clearly modelled on Casino de Monte Carlo, and to make sure his adversary loses. Ian Fleming, a keen gambler himself, dedicates page after page to explaining the rules of the game, expounding different strategies and finally talking us through Bond’s encounter with Le Chiffre in minute detail

 

From a 21st century perspective, we could argue that Fleming’s novel would have benefited from a slightly more ruthless editor. But at the time, copies flew from the shelves. Casino Royale became an international bestseller, and suddenly everyone was talking about James Bond and the game of baccarat. 

 

This makes it seem all the more bizarre that when Casino Royale finally got the big screen treatment it deserved, the directors chose to swap the game of baccarat for Texas Holdem poker. The reason for this was changing fashions in gaming. But as we will see when we look at baccarat’s recent history, these fashions can cut both ways. 

 

From WSOP to the online revolution

 

When the World Series of Poker swept the world in the 1980s, Texas Holdem was the only card game that anyone wanted to talk about. Sure, people were still playing blackjack in the casinos, but poker was the game for serious players, while baccarat was considered a throwback to the old days and dwindled in popularity. Nobody would dare dispute that James Bond is a serious player, so from that perspective, Bond director Martin Campbell’s decision makes sense for the time. 

 

If the movie had been made just a few years later, however, baccarat might well have remained the game of choice. As we moved into the 2010s, the internet became flooded with online casinos. In an immensely competitive marketplace, the challenge for the casino platforms was to stand out from the crowd. Offering something a little different is always a good way to do so, and baccarat seemed an obvious choice. 

 

The game appeals to the new brand of online casino players for two reasons. First of all, as a game that is played against the cards as opposed to directly against an opponent, it lends itself to online gaming with a random number generator. Secondly, winning or losing is more about luck and courage than skill. Yes, there is a degree of strategy, but it is more to do with mathematics and betting progressions than the kind of gameplay knowledge you need in poker. 

 

As such, baccarat is a great game for beginners.  A little like roulette, having little experience does not set you at a disadvantage, and you stand as good a chance of winning as someone who has been playing the game for decades. 

 

Baccarat’s online popularity has led to it once again becoming a common sight in the real-world casinos of 2020. After all, when someone visits Las Vegas or Monte Carlo today, they want to play the games they have practiced online. And so, what was seen as a throwback to old times just a couple of decades ago is today once again one of the most commonly played casino games. Why not give it a try for yourself next time you are looking for an online diversion or perhaps exploring the Vegas Strip?

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Blog Posted In Business, eCommerce, Internet, Marketing

Introducing The Most Popular Online Wallets


By | source: Nov 19th, 2020

2020 will go down in history for a whole lot of reasons, and most are ones we will be keen to forget. However, an interesting side-effect to the headline events of 2020 is that this is the year we spent more of our time and money in cyberspace than ever before. Now despite the fact that more of us are doing it than ever, keying in our personal banking details always leads to a certain degree of anxiety. Just who has access to this information, and what will they do with it?

 

Using a digital wallet is an elegant and secure alternative. It essentially provides an extra buffer to protect your hard-earned money, as there is no need to share your main bank account details with third party vendors. Digital wallets are also designed specifically for the digital world. What this means is that transactions are fast, as well as secure. For example, suppose you buy a jacket online, but it doesn’t fit, and you need to return it for a refund. Pay using a digital wallet like PayPal, and your money will typically land back in the digital account almost instantly when the refund is processed. Pay using your debit card, and the processing time can be several days.

 

 

If you are thinking of opening up a digital wallet, there are plenty to choose from. Which one is right for you depends on the type of purchases you make and the device you use to surf the net. Here, we will guide you through some of the most popular online wallets. 

PayPal

 

PayPal has the distinction of being the first digital wallet to really hit the mainstream, bringing the concept of digital transactions to the masses before the turn on the millennium. This is thanks to the shrewd partnerships it entered into with websites like eBay. These days, the majority of retailers accept PayPal. These include the majority of fashion brands as well as many health and beauty retailers and tech sites. 

 

PayPal is also a popular payment platform in the freelancer community, especially in the growing gig economy. It’s a fast and straightforward way to make payments in multiple currencies and across international borders. 

 

PayPal has reacted to challenges from new and innovative competitors by always keeping its product offering fresh. For example, its mobile app allows people to use PayPal in the physical world and to pay with a touch of their smartphone. 

 

So is the original the best? Despite its mass popularity, there are a few downsides you need to know about. If you are not verified, there is a cap on the size and number of transactions you can make. Getting verified can be done over the phone, but does involve a fair amount of form filling. Still, you only have to do it once. PayPal also has a habit of freezing accounts without prior warning and with little explanation. Getting the account unfrozen usually involves providing documentary evidence to explain whatever transactions have been flagged as suspicious. Again, it is not usually complicated, but it can take up to 48 hours to resolve.

 

PayPal fees are also something of an enigma. While most retail purchases do not incur a fee, you can be charged for business transactions. There is also a fee of just over four percent for currency conversions.

 

Neteller

 

This e-wallet is massively popular in the igaming arena, and remains the payment method of choice among casino players. There’s more guidance on that specific area here on this site, along with some other useful tips. However, it is important to understand that Neteller is not just for financing gambling. 

 

The wallet is accepted by thousands of online sellers across multiple sectors. It’s a good choice if you make a lot of online purchases, as you will be rewarded points for each transaction. These soon mount up and can be exchanged for gift cards or even cashback rewards.  

 

Neteller has gained a reputation as the most secure payment wallet around. Doubtless, that is part of the reason it is so popular with the high roller casino gamers. The platform holds all funds in secure trust accounts and is constantly updating its security protocols to be right at the cutting edge. 

 

Instant transactions, great rewards and top notch security make Neteller sound like an obvious choice, so what’s the catch? That can be answered in one word: fees. All those good things come at a cost, and you will typically be charged a 2.5 percent deposit fee. Some transactions also incur withdrawal fees, depending on where you are sending the funds. There is also a four percent fee for currency conversions. 

 

The only other area of concern with Neteller is the customer support, or more accurately, the lack of it. While you can, with a little determination and patience, speak to a human at PayPal 24/7, Neteller’s support lines are only manned during office hours, and you will be strongly urged to send an email and wait a day or two for a response.    

 

Payoneer

 

If you make plenty of international, commercial or B2B payments, Payoneer is well worth your consideration. You can open up an account absolutely free and every account holder is issued with a free virtual wallet. 

 

It is touted as the world’s leading online payment platform and offers accounts in all the major currencies, including USD, CAD, GBP, EUR and various others. Payoneer outscores the other providers we have discussed so far when it comes to international payments because of its super low fees for transactions and currency conversion. 0.5 percent is dramatically lower than the amount you will pay to PayPal or Neteller.

 

These factor make it the tool of choice for small business entrepreneurs, freelancers, affiliate marketers and the like. It is also used by the international giants with which many of these people operate. Companies like Airbnb, Upwork and Fiverr all pay their members using the Payoneer platform. 

 

On top of all that, Payoneer offers users a prepaid Mastercard. Here, however, you need to proceed with caution, as it comes with an annual fee, and you will also be charged every time you load it up. There are also some spending limits, although these are only likely to become an issue if you are a business user making multiple transactions in the thousands of dollars. These shortcomings aside, Payoneer is unrivalled for international transactions, and can ultimately save you a small fortune in currency fees compared to its rivals. 

 

Apple, Google and Samsung Pay

 

We will mention these together, as they are so similar – the one you use simply depends on your smartphone preferences and whether you have an iOS or Android device. These are the e-wallets that first broke through to the physical world and made it possible to buy a coffee with a wave of your handset. 

 

For sheer convenience, they are difficult to beat. An exceptionally neat feature is that there is no need to provide additional proof of identity when making a purchase, as all the necessary authentication takes place on the handset. 

 

Despite initial skepticism and rumors, independent cybersecurity experts agree that they are highly secure. Authentication varies slightly between the apps. Apple Pay or Samsung Pay users can authenticate their purchases by either using a PIN or biometrics. Google Pay only requires the handset to be unlocked and you can shop away to your heart’s content. 

 

This does, of course, mean that you need to have good security on your phone, as leaving it unattended and unlocked is tantamount to leaving a purse or wallet lying around bursting with cash. However, it is worth noting that if the worst happens and your phone is lost or stolen, all three services can be remotely disabled with immediate effect. This will also wipe all your financial information and transactions from the handset. 

 

Some people are still a little unsure about the security of these apps, but let’s put it this way – they are certainly far safer than carrying a billfold of notes in your pocket. In the final analysis, if you typically make your online transactions using a mobile device, there is really no need to look any further.  

Choosing your wallet

 

Business or personal, regular or occasional, retail or B2B, domestic or international, mobile or desktop? These are some of the important questions that you need to ask yourself in order to find the online wallet that is right for your purposes.

 

There are plenty more beside the ones we have discussed here, but these are among the most popular among very specific groups, and with good reason. Today, digital transactions are all around us, and they will become still more commonplace over the coming months and years. Set yourself up with the right online wallet now and you can make transactions in the virtual world in confidence and safety, future-proofing yourself and your finances against whatever the world might throw at us in 2021 and beyond. 

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Blog Posted In Business, Marketing

Create Unique Presentation Visuals with Animated Infographic Templates


By | source: Nov 10th, 2020

Walk into any presentation and you're likely to be presented with visuals. In today's digital revolution, PowerPoint presentations often provide the audio-visual boost that engages an audience. Instead of having a wall of text, presentations can include images, often using infographics. Infographics are an eye-catching visual or graphical representation of data that are easy to read and assist in concretely spreading knowledge. Charts, diagrams, timelines, shapes, and crafty infographics turn your presentations into invigorating stories that save your clients the hassle of going through tedious statistics.

Synthesize your data and visually entice your business investors and customers with delightful infographics in PowerPoint presentations. An attractive slide deck with a captivating infographic template can outshine your presentation from your competitors. More than 80% of numbers and text in data analytics, statistics, and annual reports are forgotten by the clients if they are presented in a mundane textual way. 

Whereas, the information exhibited through infographics like mind maps, charts, pyramids, and demographic infographics, timelines leave a memorable mark on the audience. Furthermore, infographics in slides embedded with original site links can leverage your search engine rankings as it helps to create inbound links. For those looking to perk up their presentations and reinvent their marketing strategy, enthralling infographics available on SlideModel.com are your key to astound your stakeholders. 

In this article, we’ll review some of the creative infographic templates created by SlideModel.com that would be a good fit for your next PowerPoint presentations.

 

1. Animated Cube Infographic PowerPoint Template

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This 3D infographic PowerPoint template from SlideModel is an excellent choice to infuse your slides with exemplary visual display. With three 3D cube segments forming a triangle, this template is perfect to portray the growth ladder or process plans in steps. This cube pyramid will lucidly exhibit your business, marketing and strategy plans.

 

What’s great about SlideModel is its 100% editable templates which can be customized as per the needs. You can switch the color scheme of the cube infographic, change texts, adjust size, and fonts in the placeholders as desired.  Replace digits with icons, modify the cubical animations, and represent your analytical stages with this bold infographic. Help your clients to digest information easily with this beautiful infographic.

 

2. Animated 3D Multi-Step Stair Concept PowerPoint Presentation

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This awe-inspiring infographic template is optimal for you if you want to showcase the steps to achieve success in your business. Containing three 3D staircase levels with 3 steps each, this flow diagram is useful to demonstrate procedures and sub-procedures, activities, and steps required to reach the top-level victory. 

 

The staircase steps with three different directions and color-coded arrows are significant to plan a pitch before the actual development starts. Through this infographic, entrepreneurs and marketers can ascend from the lower level to the higher level showcasing plans, challenges, and opportunities in their business. Powerfully explain the business hierarchy, inspire employees to climb the staircase, and modify it according to your needs. 

 

3. Animated Infographics PowerPoint Template

[ View & Download ]

 

With a multitude of data and numbers pitched every day in the corporate world, it becomes tiresome for the customers and clients to keep track of the data and remember it. This template from SlideModel is the perfect blend of information and graphics to display the business analytics with minimal text is a concise yet comprehensive form.

 

This animated slide deck is a combination of five slides imbibed with charts, maps, icons, arrows, number labels, zig-zag effects and much more. Diverse charts like doughnut chart, core level pie chart, and maps instill a detailed description of your topic compellingly. Replicate slide designs, synchronize animations, adjust entrance and exit effects and have a wow factor in your presentation. 

 

4. Animated 3D Square Connected Block PowerPoint Template

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With more than 30 million presentations being presented every day, a creative, intuitive and vibrant slide deck can grant praises for you from your audience. This animated infographic template forms a striking presentation with interconnected 3D cubes containing four segments and combines amazing transitions to present your message and points to an audience. With its zoom-in illusion, highlight the prime points with clipart icons.

 

Comprising 14 slides, construct a presentation with four major headers on the 3D cube segments and type the details of those headers in subsequent slides. The last slide can entail a holistic summary of the project. Along with the morph transition effect in all slides, this 3D model can be easily rotated at 360 degrees for easy understanding. Crunch those numbers and display your text in a stellar way seamlessly with this template. 

 

5. Animated Folded PowerPoint Templates

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According to the 10-20-30 rule, a successful presentation contains not more than 10 slides for it to be impactful. Animated folded PowerPoint template fulfills all your needs in just 7 slides! This unique slide set embodies a folder layout display with racks of each topic accommodating attractive slide transitions and graphic animations.

 

Present your business information in a story-like form with headers like about, history, timeline, services, teams and follow. Each of the slides includes salient shapes and text placeholders to give variety to your slides. Put forward your business plans, introductions, and strategic proposals with this myriad of stellar slides incorporating circular pictures, timelines, infographic bullets, and much more. 

 

6. SWOT Analysis Template Infographic Quadrants PowerPoint

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While pitching business and marketing plans to your investors, an all-inclusive analysis of the company’s Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats are essential. Listing them in plain textual bullets might risk you losing your clients due to their dullness. This is where this SWOT Analysis infographic template comes in handy.

 

This slide deck comprises 9 slides with an overview of all the four points in the first, a bird’s eye view in quadrants one-by-one in the next four slides with extensive details in the subsequent 4 slides. Illustrate your brand’s best features, weaknesses, lucrative opportunities, and competing challenges concretely in this data-driven model. Add animations, customize slide features, and present strategic plans to your audience. SWOT analysis template can be a game-changer for businesses looking forward to assessing themselves & growing.

 

7. 1-To-7 Item Agenda Slides Template for PowerPoint Presentations

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When the business strategies or agendas are presented drably in the form of texts in bulky office files or boards, your audience is sure to lose interest after some time. To keep them engaged this infographic template is pristine for you. Pitch your 7 agenda points one by one or all at once with this curved bullet-style design. 

 

Personalize these agenda bullets with colors of your choice and select appropriate slide backgrounds and templates. As a presenter, it is imperative to display confidence in communication skills. This template will aid you in organizing your agenda in a logical sequence and also act as your cues in front of your audience. Highlight the important agendas first or choose your order and present your information in just one slide.

 

8. Pencil Infographic Template

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This pencil infographic template and metaphor encompasses a lush design. The template comes with three beautifully designed pencil themed infographics. Designed on vector graphics, the template features a modern flat design and comes with both, 4:3 and 16:9 aspect ratios. Presenters should note that the template is fully editable and can help you kickstart your presentation endeavors in no time.

 

With dark and light contrast backgrounds, the template appeals to a wide range of audiences and engages with them. People looking forward to creating a data-driven presentation can find this template a perfect pick. Since the template is fully editable, you can leverage customization and come up with a presentation that resonates with your brand.

 

9. 5-Step Cycle Infographic Design for Presentations

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For professionals looking to present their data and information in a cyclical form, this infographic slide template is a go-to option for them. Visually charm your audience with this 5 step circular flow diagram. In its 5 editable nodes, demonstrate your business ideas with a core title in the center.

 

Present all the data in a wholesome way in the first slide and focus on all the five points one by one while others fade into the background. Change colors, replace icons, format text and background. Add transition effects and infuse it with intriguing animations. Highlight your business plans concretely with these 5 visual nodes.

 

Decorating your PowerPoint presentations with infographics certainly adds unique visual charm to them. Infographics in presentations can vibrantly market your strategy, advancing over plain textual slide bullets that are bland. They help in the engagement of the audience as well as fabricates the presentation experience as lively and charming. Try out these infographic templates from SlideModel today!

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Blog Posted In Business, Marketing

Frase Review: Staying Above The Fray With AI Content Generation


By | source: Oct 16th, 2020

No business can cope with the demands of the global economy without building a recognizable brand.   The easiest way to build brand awareness is by creating and marketing content to your customers.

The problem with creating and distributing content these days is that we are experiencing massive information overload. People experience difficulties finding the most relevant content to them among thousands or millions of content pieces on most topics. That particular issue emerged as a market opportunity to build a marketing tool that utilizes artificial intelligence (AI) to find, research, and create purposeful content.

What is Frase

Besides the delivery of content directly to consumers, modern content marketing largely relies on search engines to promote content customers and prospect clients are searching for online while seeking answers to problems they have. Whether you are selling cars or digital gadgets, you need specific marketing content that is both useful for the customer and builds brand awareness.

That is where Frase comes in handy for short- and long-term marketing campaigns; this online tool enables marketers to identify the questions their target audiences are asking online. Then you can research and create SEO-friendly content that is addressing the particular pains of your customers and produce valuable summaries or answers on a topic of interest to your specific audience.

That said, Fraise’s unique service proposition is based on three major functionalities of the AI-powered tool:

  • Identification of the best topics for your content based on the top search results for your keywords.
  • Benchmarking your existing content for specific keywords against competitors.
  • Automatic generation of content summaries for keywords you are looking for.

You can create valuable content that targets specific audiences and key phrases and keep an eye on what content your competitors produce on the topic. More important, you can benchmark your existing content against theirs and fill the possible gaps in your content marketing strategy.

How Frase Works

The entire process starts with creating summaries for your intended topic, which saves you a lot of time researching each and every keyword and subject. Frase returns briefs in seconds for:

  • Relevant supporting statements and suggestions for H2 article headings.
  • Statistics you can use in the article.
  • Related article topics in context.

That is how summaries look in the Fraise’s Summaries dashboard tab.

 

As you can see, if you are in the business of paid content delivery, you can check what specific questions consumers ask online regarding this particular subject matter. You only need to enter a key phrase and the Frase dashboard will return a rich list of briefs on the topic as well as a list of related questions users have posted online.

questionsfrase

Then, you can find relevant statistics to support your statements in the Stats tab or research and link to reputable sources by exploring the most relevant source links in the Links tab of the Frase dashboard.

statsfrase

After researching all the other sources, writing down the article content, placing statistical and market or industry data in your article, and creating relevant points and statements as sub-headings, you can benchmark it against the top results found online.

At this point, you can start enhancing your content to rank better compared to the most popular articles on your subject matter By repeatedly benchmarking the article in the process of content writing you can get scores that match those of the competitors or score better than them.

You can also find what the average word count of the other articles is and select specific sources to scan for relevant content benchmarking.

 

Advanced Frase Features

frase question map

Frase also offers several advanced features for content marketers.  Its AI algorithm can help you with generating question ideas and produce a content map for your topics.

Such a content map is a valuable tool for selecting the main points of your article and extending the content reach to related topics as well. You can use it also for creating a series of content pieces on any given topic or answer a pool of questions your customers may have.

Racking your brain for content ideas?  Frase also identifies questions from the web and forums related to your topic.

question ideas

Frase also automatically generates a FAQ Schema Markup for your website to optimize your web properties for voice search and SEO snippets. For that feature to work, you need a web page that has questions and answers on it just like in a FAQ section.

By using datasets, you can optimize your FAQ section to provide automated answers to common questions while the built-in Answer Engine enables answers to be trained as site visitors engage with the engine. Thus, you effectively create AI-powered online assistants that address the most important queries from your site visitors.

 

Frase Integrations

Frase integrates with Google Search Console to automatically extract data about the most relevant question queries by your customers and site visitors, which enables you to provide up to the point answers and create content with added value to your visitors. Other integrations include publishing from Frase directly into WordPress, HubSpot CMS, and Mailchimp campaigns.

frase assistant

Fraise’s Answer Engine supports integration with HubSpot CRM, enabling you to collect contacts from your answer engine.

Main Benefits

  • Update old posts with SEO in mind.  You can import content from a URL and edit content while looking at what your competitors are doing.  They are ranking within search results for a reason!  You can then export your work into multiple formats such as Microsoft Word, HTML, text file, or PDFs.
  • Edit while you research.  Do you have what seems like hundreds of tabs open when you write? Frase is a fantastic way to consolidate research while you're writing.  You can edit the brief, add snippets and statistics from sources, and write all within one screen.
  • Idea Generation.  You can generate content ideas from your own site and web forums with the Frase.  The next generation of Frase is also adding more SEO tools (ie monthly search volume results for example)
  • Meet customer needs.  The built-in assistant is a handy tool for collecting user questions directly from a website and then addressing those search queries using the content research tools.
  • Saves Time.  It saves content marketers and content creators time researching and sourcing a topic online while equipping content writers with powerful tools to create high-ranking and relevant content.

 

Areas For Improvement

  • Don't bother with Listicles.  In our tests, Frase did not create briefs for listicles very well.  Listicles are really hard to summarize, so that makes sense.  Shortly after using it, we noticed they added User Intent to the article briefs, which does help you at least figure out what type of content to target.

frase intent

  • Some briefs will disappoint.  There's no way around it, you're going to find some briefs that frustrate you.  But the fact that it only takes a few seconds to produce means that even if you find one nugget in there, you've saved yourself time.

Conclusion

Frase enables content marketers to curate content and share content briefs with team members, which makes it easy for project managers to collaborate in-house or with a remote team. It is a product of continuous breakthroughs in the field of AI and machine learning, providing beneficial features for content marketers and anyone who creates content.  Frase won't write your content for you, but it gives you a pretty good head start.

Pricing starts at $39 a month with an annual plan. You can also try a free trial to see if it makes sense to buy.  Overall, it offers valuable features and has a very shallow learning curve, so you can start using it right away.

 

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Blog Posted In Business, eCommerce, Marketing, Retail, Tech

Shopify Review: How To Start Your Online Business In 1 Day


By | source: Aug 31st, 2020

Technological advancements have brought on a new era of business ownership – the online business owner. Having an online business means that you get to save money on traditional business costs, like rent for a warehouse or utilities. 

So, let’s say you decide that you want to set up your online store. How easy, or difficult, is it really to start an online business? Can you go from 0-100 in just one day? You can, if you use an online store hosting platform like Shopify. Keep reading to find out how you can start an online business in just one day. 

What is Shopify?

home page of shopify website

Shopify is an eCommerce subscription platform where business owners create their website using the site’s servers. This means that you can build and manage your online store, without the hassle of maintaining your own domain. No need to upgrade servers or update software – Shopify is globally supervised, so the site is monitored 24/7. 

Shopify has over one million users in 175 different countries. And these users aren’t just small-time business owners. There are dozens of big-name companies, like Heinz, Red Bull, Harper Collins, Nestle, and Hasbro that have websites hosted through Shopify. Even these major brands understand the benefit of outsourcing website management responsibilities. 

How does it work? 

question mark written in white chalk on black chalkboard

Using Shopify is relatively simple. If you already have a domain name, you can connect your existing domain to Shopify using two methods. This is possible whether your website is fully operational or still in the developmental phases.

  1. Transfer your domain

A domain transferral gives Shopify full management of your site. Once transferred, you will pay for and renew your domain through Shopify, and not the previous host site. You also will be able to adjust your domain settings directly from your Shopify admin account.

  1. Connect your domain

If you prefer to keep your domain hosted elsewhere, you can simply connect it to Shopify without the need for a full transferral. The payment for your domain, its renewal, and settings will continue to be facilitated through the third-party.

If you have not already purchased a domain for your business, you can purchase one through Shopify. Your domain will be registered for one year and can be renewed yearly until you move hosting from Shopify or delete the domain. The domain is yours to keep, even if you decide to cancel your account.

How to set up your Shopify account in one day

red and white old-fashioned clock sitting on a wooden table

There are various ways to use Shopify, so it can be a bit difficult to determine which use is best for you. To decide how to utilize the site to its full potential, you can ask yourself a few questions:

  • What type of products or services am I selling?
  • Do I plan to sell only on my site or also in person, an online marketplace, and/or social media?
  • Will I be selling my own products or dropshipping?
  • What payment providers are available in my country?
  • Will I package and ship my items myself?
  • What is my budget for a monthly pricing plan?
  • How many staff members do/will I have?

Once you have these base questions answered, you can choose the Shopify pricing plan that both suits your budget and your needs. But – let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Follow the four steps below to kickstart your journey to a fully functioning online store.

Getting started

Step One: Signup for a free trial

signup form for shopify free trial

Shopify starts off every user with an automatic 14-day free trial. This means your first two weeks will be commitment-free! All you have to do is head to the Shopify homepage and click the Start free trial button in the top right corner. 

You’ll be directed to enter your name and email address and sent an email confirmation. Confirming your email will open a separate window where you’ll have to answer a few questions to help Shopify customize your store.

Step Two: Answer basic store queries

shopify's 'about your business' questionnaire

This section is critical for your store, so take your time as you answer each question. Shopify will ask you questions such as ‘Are you already selling?’, ‘What is your current revenue?’, and ‘Which industry will you be operating in?’

Some answers will cause additional options to pop up, some of them about your logo, brainstorming names for your business, and signing up for business webinars. If you are interested in any of the additional options, you can click to select them and move on to the next question. 

Step Three: Add your address

shopify address questionnaire

The next page is where you’ll need to enter your address. Even if you only plan to work online, without entering your address you can’t be paid. So this part is important! If your business is already registered, you can click the box in the lower-left corner to indicate this.

Step Four: Explore your admin page

admin page of a sample shopify store, Jane's Flower Shop

After you’ve entered your address, your administration page will load and appear. This page is directly reflective of the way you answered the questions in the first step. You’ll see prompts offering to help you complete actions such as finding products, customizing your store’s theme, setting up local delivery, and adding online tipping. 

You’ll also have access to Shopify Compass, a free training offered (one-on-one!) to help you set up your store. Using Shopify Compass will help speed up the learning process and make your one-day setup goal all that much easier.  

Customizing your store

free customizing theme options for a shopify store

Once you’ve made it to the admin page, you’re well on your way to finalizing your store. Shopify will automatically create a domain name for you that will look something like your-store-name.myshopify.com. Your next big step will be to add a customizing theme to your online store. 

Shopify has 70+ beautifully designed themes in its Theme Store to choose from, each of which is fully customizable. If you’re tech-savvy and feeling a bit creative, you can even edit your theme using HTML and CSS codes. All you need to do is choose a template, add some unique personal touches, and then you’re ready to launch! 

Don’t worry, we haven’t forgotten about your store’s inventory. Adding your products and services is the next step.

Adding your inventory

shopify product addition page

After you’ve designed your store to your liking, you’ll need to add your products. This process may be the most time-consuming, so block out a few hours – just in case.  

First, you’ll need to upload your product images. Thankfully, many of the nitty-gritty’s of this section (like resizing product photos) are automated for your convenience. After upload, fill out the item’s detailed description, like its title, price(s) and available size(s), and color(s). You can even import your inventory in bulk from eBay, Magento, and/or an Excel or CSV file.

Indicate in the shipping section whether your product is physical and if so, its size and weight (if you know it). This section is also where you’ll need to state if you plan to ship your items yourself or use a fulfillment center. 

If you need to add a dropshipping option to your site, you can do so now using the Shopify App Store. There are over 200 dropshipping apps and services available! Just create an account on the dropshipping platform of your choice and head back over to Shopify to integrate the platform’s app. 

Setting up your payment processing

shopify payment provider explore page

You’ll need to add a payment provider to your site so you can receive customer payments. The way to do this is to enable the payment providers you wish to accept. Shopify Payments is a payment system that removes the need for adding a third-party provider. If you’d like to use Shopify Payments, you can create an account with your business details and banking information.

Since PayPal is one of the most trusted global payment providers, Shopify has made it default for each store. Another perk to setting up Shopify Payments? If you have a Shopify Payment account, you won’t be charged any additional fees when transacting through PayPal. 

Not interested in using Shopify Payment? You can deactivate this feature and accept credit card payments from over 100 credit card providers. If you decide to do this, just note that this may decrease your customer base, since credit card use is limited in some parts of the world.

Managing your domain

two woman seated and pointing at laptop screen

A vital part of your business lies in establishing a domain for your site. Although Shopify generates a generic URL when your site is created, you’ll want to get a little more personal. Having a personalized domain also assures customers that your business is trustworthy and credible. 

shopify domain explore page 

As mentioned previously, you can buy a domain through Shopify or connect or transfer an established domain. If you have a subdomain, you also add this to your site. A subdomain is essentially a part of your primary domain and can direct your customers to your website’s store. 

Rather than directing to a page on your primary domain, a subdomain allows you to create an entirely new website subsection for your store. An example of this is store.yourwebsite.com – the ‘store’ portion is the name of the subdomain, hosted on the ‘yourwebsite’ section. 

Editing your site’s Content Management System (CMS) 

shopify 'add page' section

The ‘About Me’, ‘Contact’, and ‘Home’ pages of your site shouldn’t be overlooked. You can get creative with the way you title these sections of your site. Instead of an ‘About Us’ page, you can have a ‘Getting to Know Us’ or ‘What We’re All About’ page. 

These small changes can help set your site apart from your competitors, in originality alone. You should add descriptive text and links and visually appealing photos and videos to these pages to aid your customers in understanding your brand. 

Setting up shipping details 

shipping and delivery options with shopify

How you set up your shipping will depend on where your store’s items are shipping from. If you are in the US or Canada, you have access to Shopify Shipping. Shopify Shipping can be managed from within your admin and provides you with predetermined rates and shipping labels for your items. With Shopify, you don’t have to worry about managing shipping once your business grows. You can ship items from up to 20 different locations!

If you are outside of the US or Canada, you can add your local shipping option instead. Just head to the Shopify App Store to find shipping providers in your country that meet your criteria. Remember to create shipping zones only for locations you are willing to ship to. Want to attract more customers to purchase items? Consider using basic shipping strategies, like free shipping over $100, to encourage customers and help finalize sales. 

Understanding taxes and billing

black calculator and pen resting on paper with numbers and calculations

As an online business owner, you are responsible for maintaining your own tax information. You may be new to handling your own taxes, but the Shopify Compass portal can help guide you in the right direction. Shopify helps to automatically calculate these taxes by using default tax rates from around the world. 

You’ll do well to check with your local tax authority or an accountant to ensure that you are complying with your country’s tax laws. Making a mistake on your taxes can cost you greatly in the long-run, so be sure you are well-informed about the payments required of you.

Launching your store!

woman standing next to shelving on homepage of shopify store

When you have finally made it through the last stages of site planning, you are ready to launch your site! Shopify has a “test order” option where you can simulate a real order to ensure that all your features are functioning. You’ll need to activate a paid Shopify plan to actually do the test order, so now is the time to choose one. We’ll talk about the options for plans in the Pricing section of this article a little later. For now, let’s cover the launch essentials. 

There are three ways to create your test order: using Shopify as a ‘bogus gateway’, using an actual payment provider, or using Shopify Payments. You’ll get further guidance for this test order when you get towards the end of the Shopify Compass video guides.

When you’ve done your checks and balances and your store is ready for launch, the process is swift and easy. Your site is automatically password-protected so that it can’t be accessed by customers while you’re still constructing it. To remove the password protection, head to Online Store, Preferences, and then Password protection. Click the check next to Enable password to turn off the feature and save the changes to complete the action. 

And, just like that, your new Shopify site is officially launched and live to customers! You can keep updating and editing your site as needed, but customers can now browse your site and place orders while you continue your site’s evolution. 

Five reasons why eCommerce shop owners use Shopify

numbers one, two, three, four, and five on a red background sitting above legos

#1 – You don’t have to worry about choosing the ‘perfect’ server – Whether you choose to transfer your domain or buy it through Shopify, your hunt for the ‘perfect’ server is over. Unlike with many third-party servers, Shopify is designed to be the optimal online store hosting platform. Shopify has features for every site detail you can imagine – you’re guaranteed to have the best server possible for your online business.

#2 – The Shopify App Store connects you with 1,200+ useful app integrations – The Shopify App Store is utilized by over 80% of Shopify users to integrate different applications to their stores. These apps often make managing your store much easier, and help you focus on growing and building your business. 

Install apps for everything from social media marketing, to dropshipping, to inventory management. Apps are both paid premium and free, so you can choose which options fit both your budget and your needs.

#3 – Server security and reliability are almost guaranteed – When you manage your own site, its reliability is completely up to you. Many business owners know nothing about website management, and have to hire costly web developers to handle the more tricky, technical aspects. Security updates, software upgrades, and data analytics are all handled with Shopify – which leaves you free to manage your business.

#4 – The size of your online store isn’t a factor – You don’t need to have 100,000+ site visitors or hundreds of inventory items to have a successful online store. Shopify gives you all the tools you need to thrive as a business owner, even with a smaller-size store. You may only be selling three or four products and you’ll still have access to all the same amazing features, and benefits as larger stores. 

 #5 – Shopify’s interface is user-friendly and easy to navigate – Your customers need a website that isn’t overly complicated. No matter how great your product is, if your customers have a hard time navigating your site, they’ll likely never make it to the ‘submit payment’ stage. Shopify stores are all optimized for mobile use, so customers can comfortably shop from any of their devices.   

Shopify pricing vs Competitor pricing

woman counting money in her hand while sitting at a black table with a notebook and pen

Before you decide to put all that effort into setting up your Shopify account, let’s compare its pricing plans to those of its competitors.

So, who are some of Shopify’s major competitions? There are quite a few, but we’ll be focusing on the top three most popular options: Wix, BigCommerce, and Squarespace. 

Here’s a quick table breaking down the three main tiers of pricing at each platform (in USD). 

 

Shopify Wix BigCommerce Squarespace
Basic $29 $17 $29.95 $26/annual

$30/month

Standard $79 $25 $71.95/annual

$79.95/month

Premium $299 $35 $269.96/annual

$299.95/month

$40/annual

$46/month

 

As you can see, the Shopify and BigCommerce plans are comparable in cost, while Wix and Squarespace have similar pricing. This is likely due to the fact that both Shopify and BigCommerce cater to customers interested in scaling their businesses. 

Online store owners who intend to increase their revenue without increasing costs (which is what ‘scaling’ entails) need specialized support and features to do so.

Wix and Squarespace

Both Wix and Squarespace are website hosting platforms that allow an online business website, but neither is directly designed for eCommerce. Their pricing is much lower than Shopify or BigCommerce to reflect less advanced features. A less complicated interface is certainly a positive for beginners, which is why both platforms are still solid Shopify competitors.

A significant downside? Both platforms offer less backend control than Shopify. This means that while your site may be easier to create, you have decreased flexibility in terms of your site’s functionality. 

BigCommerce

BigCommerce has a complex interface that both attracts and deters users, depending on how tech-savvy they may be. As an eCommerce platform, BigCommerce is formatted for online business owners that want a more streamlined start-to-finish service. In contrast to Shopify, BigCommerce is a fully integrated platform – removing the dependence on apps.

Although it sells itself on integration, BigCommerce has a complex interface that isn’t suited for beginners. The learning curve is a bit steep, but if you are more advanced or willing to put in the effort, it can be worth your while. 

Are there cons to using Shopify?

frustrated woman sitting in front of laptop while throwing her hands up

No platform is without downsides.  Shopify is no exception to this rule. If you are looking for a cheap online store-building option, you’ll need to look elsewhere. Shopify also can be a little complicated to navigate without the help of its many tutorials and guides. Other platforms may offer more design themes than Shopify, which are easier for you to customize and add your own personal flair. 

Here’s a shortlist of some of the main points of contention that users have expressed about Shopify:

  • Shopify Payments is only available when selling from certain countries
  • Transaction fees are unavoidable when using third-party payment providers
  • Only nine of Shopify’s 70+ design themes are free – the rest require a one-time payment of $180 for use
  • The apps in the Shopify App Store often come with their own associated fees
  • No free version available, only a 14-day free trial
  • 24/7 tech support is available through live chat and email, but some users find these services slow and have to rely on community forums 
  • Changing your store’s theme requires you to reformat your site since many of your formatting is not automatically integrated

So, is Shopify the right hosting platform for you? 

hands scrolling on laptop with assorted photos on its screen

In the grand scheme of things, the downsides of Shopify are minor when compared to its benefits. You’ll need to be comfortable investing more money into your company than the average eCommerce platform might require, but the payoff is a powerful platform at your fingertips. 

Do you need to start an online business in just one day? Then Shopify is the easy, hassle-free, user-friendly eCommerce platform for you. There are plenty of other online business hosting platforms, but Shopify wins in the areas that matter. It continues to outperform its competitors in design flexibility, help and support, sales features, and customer satisfaction.

Your online business deserves the best backend and frontend development possible. Shopify offers you amazing, state-of-the-art web development services, perfect for setting up, launching, and growing your online store. 

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