How to Select the Best Products and Services Online

Selecting the best products and services online can be a challenge. You don’t have the option of going to the store to check out the item before you buy. Neither do you have the benefit of friends recommending services they personally used. Blogs often recount horror tales about customers who placed orders for items they found attractive on online catalogs, only to be shipped defective products with missing parts. So how does the ordinary web surfer, with no knowledge or inside information of the industry, decide on the best goods?

A good online store offers reliable service, timely shipping, and reasonable prices. Here are some tips that will help make your online shopping experience problem-free.

1. Do they provide contact details? A good retailer will not just provide an email ID, but also a street address, complete with phone numbers and addresses of branch offices. Beware of settling for simple post box numbers.

2. Do they provide detailed information on the products and services? This should include photos, description of the product, applications, and price.

3. What do users say about the product? Look for reviews and user generated information. Have many people consistently expressed satisfaction with the retailer or service provider? Are there any complaints?

4. Take a good look at the “terms and conditions” section. Go through their transaction terms and privacy policy. If they have promised not to sell your information to third parties, it is probably a bona fide site. Look at all the details regarding transactions, such as payment, shipping, replacement or refunds, warranties, etc.

5. Wire transfers and checks are outdated and unsafe methods for paying for your products and services. Wire transfer scams are common online; therefore this is one method of payment you should avoid. Credit card payments are a bit more secure, but there is always the risk of someone unauthorized getting hold of personal details when you provide the information online. Online money transfer services such as PayPal are the best option when paying for products and services online.

6. Additional charges can include shipping and fees on funds transfer. Factor these in when making purchases. Often, retailers will ship an item costing above a particular price for no extra charge. Funds transfer websites sometimes levy a transaction fee for money transfer to a bank in another country or remittance through check.

7. Look at the shipping time. Generally, products are shipped within the same country in 48 hours. It takes longer to dispatch products to another country. If the consignment is delayed, you should have the contact details of the company handy so that you can make inquiries. Sometimes, the retailer will notify you of delays. Similarly, service providers should inform you well in advance if there is a problem in meeting deadlines.

8. Finally, trust your intuition. If you think you are not comfortable with a particular site, move on to the next. There are plenty of online companies offering products and services, and not all of them are dishonest.

The advantages of shopping for products and services online far outweigh the risks. The risks can be managed through the tips provided above. Have a happy shopping experience!

Marketing Similarities Between Products and Services – Marketing Your Online Product Or Service

Whether you are a retailer of a product or service, the fact is that you will need to effectively market that commodity. Marketing strategies will vary, unless of course you have an online business, and then you will realise that there are actually many marketing similarities between products and services within any industry.

If you have an online business, the focal point will be a little less about the actual commodity and more about getting your website to be easily accessible. You must however understand that by accessible, I am not referring to persons being able to access the website, but rather being able to locate it.

For many persons who are not familiar with internet marketing, it may sound strange to hear someone say that your website is not easily found on the net, but to understand what is meant, you will first need to know how the online business work. The first thing that you need to realise, is that your website is not immediately search friendly once it has been launched, it has to be submitted first.

Your website will need to be submitted to all the major search engines because that is how majority of your target market will be able to find you. Your target market refers to the persons who are more likely to be interested in the type of service or product that you offer. These people will often type a keyword or key-phrase in a search engine (which will more than likely be Google) and that keyword or key-phrase will point them to your website if it has been effectively optimized.

Often times, customers will not know your website address offhand, so they tend to search directly for what they are looking for instead of searching for the company. If you sell shoes, they should be able to find you when they type shoes in the search bar, even if your website address does not have the word shoes in it. This is what effective online marketing will do for you.

Your first step will be to submit your website to the search engines so that they can add your website to their database. Now, that is the easiest part of the entire marketing process; you will now have to get your website optimized so that it appears among the very first set of links that the search engine returns on its result page.

What Is the Difference Between a Product and Service?

Products and services create the backbone for any business. No matter the size of the business, one of the first things a business person will do is decide what the business will offer for people to purchase. These will be either products, services or a combination of both. Even though the idea of products and services could overlap, there are ways to distinguish between the two of them for business purposes.

Products are normally physical objects or things that can be consumed, touched, owned, or held in some manner by the client. Products can range from a piece of clothing to a physical location for holding an event to an insurance policy. With all of these, you make a transaction that allows someone to have the product in exchange for money or other agreement such as a bartering arrangement.

Services are usually intangible and they don’t allow the other person to own something. For instance, in consulting services, the person cannot touch a consulting engagement. Even though information has been exchanged, the client does not end up owning any tangible thing as a result of consulting. The service can provide a benefit to the client because it can change something in them mentally, emotionally, physically that takes them from where they started before delivery of the service to where they want to be. However, unless a product is delivered in the process, the client does not walk away with anything physical.

You can also have a business that combines products and services. Many service professionals find that adding a product to their business helps to increase the interest of buyers in their offerings. People like to have something tangible for their money. However, this is not always the case. For instance, depending on the type of service provided, the service provider might also write a book or workbook, develop a business or marketing plan, or provide medications for a diagnosed problem. Now the business has both services and products to offer.

A business can develop a service line or product line by creating multiple elements of their business. Examples of a service line would include giving more coaching or consulting services with increasingly extensive service packages. For instance, an accounting professional might start by offering one hour of consulting on how to set up your business books. From there, they can increase the services to include 12 months of consulting you on how to keep your books so you know what to do. The client can select from the line of services available.

That same accountant could offer a product line in the business by offering software to help with bookkeeping, creating accounting statements and filing taxes for the customer.

You can see that having a good product or service line offers more opportunities to sell to clients which can increase the profit and success potential for a business.