10 Marketing & Social Media Tactics to Boost Holiday Sales

Tis the season for holiday sales!

Shoppers are flocking online in search of gift giving ideas. According to Mashable, "65% of shoppers tap social media looking for the perfect gift … and two out of three shoppers purchased a gift they found via social media."

So what are the best ways to cash in on seasonal sales with your business?

Whether you are a service-based business or sell products, here's some suggestions to get in the spirit with holiday sales.

1) Learn from the Ghost of Christmas Past

Look at metrics from last year's holiday sales. What products were bestsellers? Which promotions created the largest lift in sales? What special offers were a total bomb?

Discover what worked and did not so you can capitalize on it when you plan this year's promotions.

2) Make a Holiday Social Media Cover Image

Decorate your social media business pages with a specially designed cover image. It's the perfect place to announce special holidays promotions and deals.

Be sure to create one for all of your social media accounts.

3) Use Holiday Hashtags

Twitter shoppers may use hashtags to find their next purchase. So take advantage of hashtags to get discovered.

Some popular hashtags include: #blackFriday, #DIY, #holidaysssavings, #stockingstuffers, #holidays, #Christmas, #Hannukah, #Kwanzaa, #NewYears

4) Create Social Media Graphics for Promos and Deals

Everyone loves getting a great deal when holiday shopping. Make festive graphics promoting special promotions that make purchasing the perfect item irresistible.

Deals can include:

• one day only,

• limited quantity sales,

• buy-one-get-one free,

• special discounts or holiday coupons.

Consider offering a "12 days of Christmas" promotion with a special deal each day!

Canva makes it easy to make custom holiday social media graphics.

5) Boost Sales with Free Shipping

Consider offering free shipping for holidays gifts. Create highly visible buttons or banners promoting it on your website.

Or you can boost the order size by offering free shipping on orders over a bigger dollar amount such as $ 100.

Studies show that shipping costs are one of the largest detracts to making a purchase online so this one tactic could result in big returns for you.

6) Offer Gift Ideas

Holiday shopping can be frustrating when you do not know what to buy for the person who has everything. You'll want to promote your bestselling gifts.

Make gift buying easy by sharing gift suggestions like:

• 5 gifts for mom,

• 10 gifts grandparents love,

• 5 gift ideas for tech savvy teens etc.

Then offer links to purchase each of the items you mention on your blog and on social media.

Better yet, if you have a blog, write articles based on these topics and refer to your products within the article with links back to the purchase page.

7) Write Reviews

If you offer one of the hot new products of the season, consider writing and reviewing a review about it on your blog. In this review you could mention your own offers that would be a great gift accompaniment.

As an example, do a review of the top three smart phone accessories for Mom this Christmas and share pictures of them with a red bow on them along with a side-by-side features comparison. Then mention how your offer go great with these gift ideas while including links to purchase.

You could also incorporate your Amazon affiliate link for those products

8) Suggest Stocking Stuffer Ideas

Help idea stumped shoppers by offering suggestions for small items for everyone on their shopping list!

Write a blog post with the hottest stocking stuffers for the season. Share daily stocking stuffer ideas on social media using hashtags like: # beststockingstuffers2016 #cheapstockingstuffers #stockingstuffersforwomen

9) Reward Loyal Customers

Offer to give a $ 100 Gift Card to a randomly selected customer cutting posting a picture or video with your product on social media. Set up a campaign having them use a special hash tag like #christmascountdown.

This can help your promotional campaigns to go viral as customers share on their timeline and family / friends see their post.

10) Share Holiday Spirit

Connect to the spirit of the holidays in your customer's hearts. Engage your customers by asking them their favorite holiday tradition.

Get people to interact with your brand by asking them to share:

a. Their most-loved family recipes from Thanksgiving or another holiday event.

b. What their most loved Christmas song is.

c. DIY Christmas decorating tips.

d. Easy gift wrapping suggestions.

Fast Weight Loss Diets That Shrink Belly Fat

Getting a Firm Belly

A lot of importance is placed upon tight flat stomachs. Marketing campaigns are always promoting items that will accomplish this. Although many individuals want to lose their belly fat, due to appearances, one main reason to reduce this fat is your health! However, experts are now saying that it is okay to have a little fat, as long as you are not overweight.

Belly flab and high blood pressure, as well as high cholesterol, heart disease, and type 2 diabetes have been linked to belly fat. In order to be at no health risk, men should not have a waist measuring more than 40 inches, and women must have a 35 inch waist or less.

Below are some good techniques to help you reduce dangerous abdominal fat and get a firm belly:

· Exercise More, Eat Better

Calories do not have to be burnt at a gym or workout class; this can be done when you participate in everyday activities. For example, yard work burns several hundred calories per hour. Whereas organized sports, like football, burn even more. Another great activity to burn calories is swimming. Still another way to burn calories is to engage in walking.

Your fat-burning metabolism will kick into overdrive with Cardio exercise. All you need is persistence and perseverance; the trick is to find an activity you like. If you stick to it, the pounds will melt away. It’s also imperative to alter your routine to ward off boredom, as well as to get maximum calorie burning results.

In order to get a firm belly, there are different exercises that you can implement into your schedule. The American Council on Exercise did a study to find out the best types of exercise to incorporate into any weight loss program. Their findings included supine bicycle, captain’s chair leg lifts, and vertical leg crunches. These exercises are thought to work the abs more than any other exercises. Other good exercises include twisting crunches and exercise ball crunches. These activities should be done several times a week in order to obtain a slimmer waistline. Detailed step-by-step tutorials for each exercise can be found on the internet. However, if you are an outside person and your yard needs mowed, this activity will move all those muscles in the right way. However you must engage in this activity at least 20 minutes, non- stop.

Different foods can help you get a firm belly. Foods high in protein and fiber are slenderizing, however sugary carbs increase belly fat rather quickly. You should look for a diet consisting of complex carbs, unsaturated fats, and lean protein sources; a classic example is the South Beach diet. The diet solution has a high success rate and is a natural way of losing weight.

· Reduce Stress

The reducing of stress can be accomplished at the same time that you are losing belly fat. This can be done through the implementation of yoga. Yoga has a two-fold effect on our bellies, as follows:

1. It reduces stress levels. Stress very often leads to weight gain. Stress-induced weight gain often results in belly fat. In this way, stress reduction can give you a flatter stomach and at the same time, actually lower your risk for many diseases.

2. Yoga also tones the muscles in your stomach. A yoga routine that includes supine poses and other postures will work the abdominal muscles. You might want to check out a yoga DVD or video tape, or you can also try to go through some yoga tutorials.

All in all, it takes time and effort to get that dream belly, but it sure is worth it!

Dedicated Hosting Servers – Choosing the Best

What are dedicated hosting servers?

Dedicated hosting servers, as the name implies, are servers leased to a single client and not shared with any others. In other words, if you were to sign up to a dedicated hosting plan, the server would be devoted and committed entirely to hosting your websites.

Why should I use dedicated hosting?

Dedicated hosting has a variety of advantages over shared hosting, particularly if you plan to run an ecommerce website or if you prefer a high level of control over resources.

The key advantages can be briefly summarised as follows:

  • CONTROL: over operating system and software applications
  • RELIABILITY: Reliability: quicker server response time and better performance as the server is not taxed by sharers
  • SECURITY: extremely high security is provided and you can implement your own security measures
  • RESOURCES: greater bandwidth available, ideal for high traffic and resource-intensive websites

What do I need to use dedicated hosting?

MANAGEMENT SKILLS

Although dedicated web hosting gives you the opportunity to fully manage your server, web hosts will provide varying levels of management for you, depending on your host and plan. In these cases, you will not need a high level of management skills.

FINANCES

Expect to pay more for dedicated web hosting that for shared.

What should I look for in a dedicated server?

RAM

It is crucial to have enough RAM. You should aim for at least 2 GB of RAM and the more the better. The number of concurrent users able to visit your site will be greatly affected by the amount of RAM you have. If you do not have enough RAM, under a significant load from a number of simultaneous users accessing your site, your site will crash (i.e. the Slashdot effect). This can particularly be a problem if you have database driven applications.

PROCESSOR

Choosing the best processor for your needs is also important. Intel Xeons and AMD Opterons are the current standard in server CPU architecture. Other CPUs are most likely outdated or are standard desktop CPUs and may not perform as well as the former under a significant network load.

DISK SPACE

Choose a plan with the amount you will need. Unless you will be serving up file and data archives and/or audio and video content (i.e. streaming media, mp3 downloads, etc) then disk space should not be a concern as all plans provide more than adequate amounts of disk space (e.g. 250 GB+). If you anticipate expansion, look into the flexibility of upgrade options.

BANDWIDTH (Monthly Transfer)

Look for 1000-2000 GB+, depending on your needs.

DATA CONNECTION SPEED

Look for 1000 Mbps, particularly if you are streaming video or have a large number of concurrent users. Otherwise 100 Mbps might suffice.

OPERATING SYSTEMS

Look for which are offered and what costs are involved. Many Linux distributions and BSD systems are available for free from the open source community, while Microsoft Windows Server involves a cost. Expect operating system updates to be provided.

MANAGEMENT / EASE OF USE

Look for how much management is included in the plan price. For ease of use, look for free inclusion of cPanel (web based administration). Look for hosts supporting server configuration, software, application, security and anti-virus updates, firewall services and monitoring. Be wary of the term “fully managed” as this means different things to different hosts. Investigate thoroughly.

SOFTWARE

What options do you have? What is included? Microsoft products? Look for control panel software.

SUPPORT

Look for 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year phone / email technical support.

BACKUP AND RESTORATION

Look for what backup and restoration options are provided. Some plans come with two hard drives, allowing an easy back up solution.

IP ADDRESSES

Look for more than one, particularly if you plan to do ecommerce.

UPTIME GUARANTEE

Look for hosts guaranteeing 99.9 to 100% uptime and find out their compensation if it is not reached.

WEB HOSTING PRICE

Find out if there is a setup fee. Expect to pay $200+ per month for hosting.

Who provides top rated web hosting?

No doubt you will read different opinions in different places, but based on the criteria outlined above, I have identified a few stand-out dedicated web hosts with excellent reputations for quality and reliability. You will find details of these hosts at Web Host Choice [http://webhostchoice.info]

Adirondack All Weather Furniture – Choosing the Right Wood Type

Few people are aware of the fact that the idea for quality Adirondack all weather furniture began with a quest to find the perfect chair for relaxing on lazy summer evenings. This is why comfort is one of the very first things anyone thinks of when imagining an Adirondack chair or lounger. Aside from comfort, the other feature that most comes to mind when thinking about Adirondack all weather furniture is durability … why else would they call it all-weather !?

Because the original Adirondack chairs were originally designed for outdoor use at some lake cottage or similar retreat-the furniture had to be durable and was made from woods such as:

1. Cypress

2. Pine

3. Cedar

The use of cypress for construction purposes dates all the way back to ancient Egypt when the wood was a material for the construction of caskets for the first pharaohs. Today, cypress is a very common wood and used to make outdoor furniture like swings and various deck accessories. Cypress is also commonly used to make doors and windows as well because it has a conservative within the wood grain that helps it naturally repel insects and resist rot and decay which is why it is a popular choice when crafting quality-made Adirondack chairs and patio furniture .

Pine is another common wood used to make quality Adirondack all weather chairs and other seasonal outdoor furniture. Because of its abundance and reliably quick growth cycle, pine tends to be cheaper wood and is used extensively in the construction of many outdoor furniture pieces, including tables, benches, swings, chairs, and loungers. Pine tends to have a relatively low oil content and bids to that dry out easily, making it susceptible to cracking. However, when properly maintained, pine can be used to make premium Adirondack all weather furniture.

Cedar is a great wood when thinking about quality Adirondack outdoor furniture. Having a reddish brown color, cedar wood tend to be somewhat knotty and is actually a softwood. Cedar is naturally insect repellant and tend to have a very distinct aroma which can be managed with a sealer. However, quality Adirondack all weather furniture made from cedar is both beautiful and very durable making it an excellent choice when buying patio or deck chairs, tables, or accessories.