Everyone Should Use Quote Requests

The quote request form has become the unwelcome speed bump in the neighborhood of online instant gratification. Often times the forms are dated and unintuitive, with unfamiliar terms prompting us for information we are ill-equipped to provide. Too frequently we simply seek refuge in the salvation of the Back button. Is this reaction justified? Are we over-looking true value to avoid minor inconvenience? Is it worthwhile to complete a quote request?

The Virtues of Quote Requests

A quote request is a seemingly simple and straightforward device – an inquirer outlines their objectives or needs and a proprietor proposes a solution. While fundamentally correct this understanding overlooks the subtleties and hidden benefits that a quote request offers like increased awareness, opportunity and savings.

Show Your Willingness to Work

Sellers will take you as serious as you take the process of finding a good deal. Taking the time to complete and submit a quote request form communicates many things to a seller, not the least of which is that you have the time and patience to compare your options and strive to be an informed customer. This will send a signal to the seller that the buyer they are dealing with is discerning, aware and price sensitive, which will be reflected in the resulting price proposal.

Leverage Professional Assistance

Typically quote requests are either very sparsely or very thoroughly completed. Thinly completing a request form indicates to the seller that a buyer is either rattling off numerous requests hoping for the best deal or they are uninformed regarding the inquiry subject. To avoid the former emphasize the need for professional assistance in defining your needs, adding that help selecting the correct products or services will be appreciated. Vendors jump at the chance to provide guidance to a buyer as it helps with customer loyalty and to convert sales.

Bargain Hunt Professionally

To effectively comparison shop utilizing quote requests position yourself as a savvy buyer with all the requisite knowledge. Submit a complete request form specifying exact product requirements and even indicate other prices you’ve been quoted. The more guesswork is eliminated for the seller the easier your sale can be viewed as a quick and easy transaction. Using this method shifts the emphasis from maximum profit to incremental revenue and prices drop.

Not a Low Price but Today’s Low Price

Websites do not have the resources to continually update their pricing information, despite near constant fluctuations in expenses and revenues. With quote requests you gain access to the most up to date pricing a vendor can provide. Fortunately for the buyer there is almost no situation in which the seller isn’t motivated to offer the price most likely to secure the order.

Shipping Costs are Unpredictable

The cost associated with shipping large items is difficult to calculate in real time, as web based e-commerce systems require. This forces sellers to overestimate shipping cost in the interest of shopping convenience or to take order inquiries via a quote request form. With a quote request vendors are able to provide the most accurate shipping costs and when an order totals hundreds or thousands of pounds this can amount to $100’s saved.

Fly Below the Radar

The biggest upside to submitting a quote request is the flexibility it provides vendors to operate outside their normal sales channel. Whereas a typical sales environment vendors must protect their brand and maintain semi-rigid price points, the discretion of dealing one-on-one with a potential customer enables the seller to propose prices which otherwise could not be justified.

Beyond the Form

Utilizing price quotes to get unlisted discounts should not be limited to websites which have a quote request form. Potential buyers of products through any medium, online or not, would be wise to introduce this underrated and underutilized money saving tool. Go above and beyond the apparent marketing devices and pick up the phone or open a new email. Chances are you will learn a little and save a lot.

Motivational Quotes – 5 Ways to Use Them to Get and Keep Yourself Motivated

Using motivational quotes as a way of staying inspired is a common practice among high achievers. You can get an added boost of excitement and confidence when you read or repeat a saying from a famous person. Here are 5 ways to use motivation quotes to gain and sustain motivation.

1. Read- Read inspiring books. Read biographies and personal development self-help books. When you do so you will find inspiring quotes that you can lift out of them and use. Once you have these quotes you can read them any time that you like. A good quote that you borrow from a book can push you do what it takes to get what you want. Let’s say that a person has been putting off setting goals and yet they are discouraged with their current situation.

Here is a quote that can help:

“Setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible.” ~ Anthony Robbins

Reading this quote while internalizing what it states to you will serve to dramatically increase your enthusiasm, belief and inspiration.

2. Say- Simply speaking quotes out loud can get you fired up and excited about going after your goals. When you say a quote over and over again it reinforces your belief in yourself. You will gain confidence. You will come to believe that now is a good time to pursue your passion and make things happen.

3. Write- Write good motivational quotes down. You want to record and collect as many good quotes as possible. Each one that you have access to can change your emotional state from frustrated to encouraged. Imagine finding a quote like this one:

“The way to develop self-confidence is to do the thing you fear and get a record of successful experiences behind you. Destiny is not a matter of chance, it is a matter of choice; it is not a thing to be waited for, it is a thing to be achieved.” -William Jennings Bryan

Isn’t that inspiring? Next you want to be sure to write this quote down. When you collect a quote like this one, then you have in your possession an inspiring statement that can motivate you time and time again.

4. Display- Put quotes up so that they are always in your environment. Throughout your day you are faced with many ups and downs. No matter how much of a drain you may be receiving from negative situations, a good quote can help.

“The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts… “ – Marcus Aurelius

When a quote like this one is placed somewhere within eyeshot of where you are working will work to counteract the discouraging forces at play and give you a ray of sunshine in the midst of the storm.

5. Share- Here is what will happen. By repeating them over and over again, you will eventually memorize your favorite quotes. Then you will develop the habit of using those quotes to drive your point home when you are expressing important thoughts to others. People tend to listen to you more intently when you use quotes because you are borrowing credibility. For instance, when you quote Abraham Lincoln or Gandhi people will instantly become receptive to what you have to say. You’ll soon discover that the very same quotes that you used for your own motivation will end up motivating others as well.

Positive Thinking Quotes: How to Pick the Right Ones for You!

Choosing positive thinking quotes, positive sayings and other encouragement quotes can be fun when you know a few simple tricks to making them fit for you. This article gives you three tips for choosing which positive quotes are good quotes that find happiness inside and are the best ones for you.

TIP ONE: First, let’s briefly discuss the importance of keeping quotes on positive thinking, hope quotes and other encouraging positive phrases around you. While it’s been said for a long time that we are a product of our environment, many times we forget exactly how true this simple concept is when leading our daily lives where we are constantly bombarded with negativity. Just like a flower that is fed and watered with nutrients so it can bloom, so we must feed ourselves with positivity quotes, hope quotes, positive sayings and overall good quotes that offset the doom and gloom we absorb from today’s media influences. To put it simply, if you put a white potato in a bowl of purple water, you’re going to have a purple infused potato. So, if you put yourself in a “bowl of negative exposure daily,” you’re going to have a “negatively infused body, mind and spirit.” One the other hand, if your purple water is a “bowl of positive exposure daily,” you’re going to have a “positively infused body, mind and spirit.”

By keeping positive thinking quotes, positive sayings, positive attitude quotes and overall good quotes around you, you are able to “infuse” your mind, body and spirit with uplifting material that feeds you and helps you bloom.

TIP TWO: Next, you’ll want to find a way to keep your encouragement quotes and other positive phrases around you in such a manner that you don’t have to remember to recite them or even read them. For example, let’s say you’ve chosen some great encouragement quotes that make you feel hopeful and great, but you’re so busy all day long that it’s difficult to keep them in front of yourself long enough to be “infused with the hope they provide.” In other words, your potato doesn’t have enough water to fully become positively purple!

So, you’ll want to make it easy to absorb your positive sayings, positivity quotes and overall good quotes in such a manner that you don’t even see them. One of my favorite ways of doing this is to play them as subliminal messages over my stereo so my subconscious hears them all the time. Another way is to get some good positive thinking quotes on postcards or posters and hang them up on your walls so you’re “physically infused with positivity” from all around you. Or, having a good screen saver on your computer that shows quotes on positive thinking all day long would be great too. My point is to find some way to “infuse yourself” enough to get fully saturated with hope quotes and positive attitude quotes so your energy “invisibly” shifts to being more positive.

TIP THREE: Lastly, when choosing positive thinking quotes and other encouragement quotes, you want to feel the “zing of happiness” when you read or hear them. This “zing” is your emotional intelligence telling you that this particular positive quote is just what you need.

Choosing quotes on positive thinking using these three tips is fun and easy and helps you ensure that you are “infusing your potato” with hope quotes, positive phrases, positivity quotes and other good quotes that will speak directly to your spirit and feed you exactly what you need to bloom and grow.

Merchant Account Quotes – Where to Get Them and What to Look For

For many businesses, merchant account fees are responsible for a significant portion of monthly operating expenses. To be sure that you’re paying as little as possible for credit card processing, it’s a good idea to periodically check the market by getting merchant account quotes from a few different providers.

A very efficient way to do this is to use an online merchant account quoting service. These services perform basically the same function by delivering quotes from multiple providers, but they do it to varying degrees.

In the following article, I’ll examine a few different quoting services and talk about the pros and cons of each. We’ll also cover the aspects of a good merchant account quote and what you can do to ensure that the rates you’re quoted are the rates that you get – nothing more, nothing less.

The background on merchant account quotes
In the sales industry the term “lead” is used to refer to information about a prospective buyer. A lead usually includes contact information or some other form of identifiable information for a business or individual that is known to be in the market for a particular product or service.

Online services that offer merchant account quotes collect information from people and businesses looking for credit card processing and they sell it to merchant service providers. For most quoting services this is as far as their involvement goes, but as I’ll explain in the next section, one newcomer to the market has taken things a bit further.

Where to get quotes and what to expect At the time of this writing, merchant account quote web sites operate using one of two business models to shape their service offering. Each type of service has its pros and cons – it’s up to you to decide which type best fits your needs.

The Middleman The first and most traditional type of quoting service is what I like to call “middleman.” Middleman quote services collect information from online forms via one or a large network of web sites. Once a prospective buyer submits their information, it’s quickly passed to a provider – often in a matter of minutes. Once the provider receives the lead, they contact the buyer and attempt to sell them a merchant account.

There’s not much more to say about middleman merchant account quote services because their involvement ends as soon they send information to the provider.

Middleman services typically distribute each lead to between three and five providers. Competition is very fierce among providers and you should be prepared to field a barrage of telephone calls, emails, faxes and even mail in a short period of time. The merchant account offers will come quickly, often delivered with high-pressure sales tactics. With a middleman service, providers won’t always send an actual merchant account quote right away. Instead, they’ll try and sell you something right away.

The best thing to do when using a middleman service is to get an actual written merchant account quote from each provider and then step back for a moment to analyze each offer. If you have questions about a quote, contact the provider for clarification. To get the best rates and fees, don’t take a quote at face value. Instead, use the fierce competition to your advantage and ask providers beat their competitor’s quote.

I regret to say that I couldn’t get permission from any middleman quote services to mention their name in this article, but a slew of them can be found by typing the term “merchant account quote” into your favorite search engine.

The Consultant The second and more in-depth type of merchant account quote service is what I call the “consultant.” Consultant quoting services take ownership of the quote process from start to finish by providing an online venue where customers and providers meet. Consultant services collect information via a series of forms on a single (their own) web site when a prospective buyer (you) creates an account. This information is then displayed anonymously to providers. After reviewing a buyer’s information, a provider can choose to place a quote or wait for a customer that’s a better fit for their service offering.

Once a provider places a quote for a buyer, a consultant quote service offers support to both the buyer and the provider to assist in the selling process. They essentially act as a neutral third party to answer questions, provide mediation, record quotes and communications, and offer general assistance. Consultant quote services produce a low-pressure sales environment because the buyer’s contact information is not given to a provider until after they accept a winning quote.

CardFellow.com is a great example of a consultant merchant account quote service. You can visit their web site to read more about their services.

The aspects of a good merchant account quote There’s a lot more to a good merchant account quote than low rates and fees. A good quote is thorough, and specifically formulated for your business’s needs. Regardless of which type of quoting service you decide to use to get quotes, chances are good that you’ll need to do a little haggling to get rates and fees where you want them.

Quotes need to be specific to your business’s needs. A provider shouldn’t offer you a quote until they’ve learned about your business and your processing needs.

  • Middleman: You’ll need to speak with a provider to give them this information.
  • Consultant: The provider can review your business profile without needing to speak with you.

Quotes must be all-encompassing and thorough. Merchant account quotes should encompass every rate and fee that you’ll be obligated to pay. Quotes that just focus on prominent rates and fees like the qualified discount percentage and the transaction fee are incomplete.

  • Middleman: You’ll have to be sure that you’re getting all of the rates and fees in writing by asking the provider.
  • Consultant: They record quotes for you and they require provider’s to disclose all rates and fees. Provider’s can’t submit quotes unless all rates and fees are provided.

Get everything in writing. The merchant account quoting process is often involved, requiring quote revisions and haggling. Be sure to get all changes and promises in writing from the provider so there’s something to reference later if a misunderstanding should arise.

  • Middleman: You’ll have to be sure to record conversations and information between yourself and providers. A good way to do this is to insist on communicating via email. That way, there’s a chronological communication trail to reference later.
  • Consultant: They provide a private message board unique to each quote for you to use to communicate with providers. This automatically creates a communication log that’s verifiable by a third-party (the quoting service).

Business Environment: Why Is Knowing About Your Business Environment Vital To Your Home Business?

A business environment refers mainly to the surrounding of your business. It refers to those aspects that lie outside your online home business but which impact substantially on your business operations. For instance, people who buy your products or services lie outside your business. They greatly affect your business operations because their decision to buy or not to buy from you impact greatly on the success of your business. You can only make money online if you have targeted consumers.

Changes in the business environment affect either positively or negatively your online home business. It’s therefore important for you as an online marketer to be knowledgeable all the time about the environment in which you operate. You can do this through conducting online surveys, observing critically the trends of your business, asking questions and visiting places where you can get useful information about the environment in which you operate.

One day I went to one of the marketing forums and asked the forum members to comment on one of my websites that I had just redesigned and uploaded. I was surprised by the comments I received, the majority of which pointed out that the design was horrible. Surprisingly, when I was designing the site, I thought I had given it a very good design that would enable me to take my online business to another level. But the comments I received revealed to me that I couldn’t make any money due to a very poor design. I received good comments on what to do to improve it.

The above revelation is an example of how what you can do to find out those aspects outside your business that affect greatly the success of your business.

I would like to imagine what would happen to you if you were living alone in this world. Obviously, you would have nobody to speak to and this would present a very difficult situation for you. Many times, we want to speak to someone about our plans or to seek advice from them. But this would completely be impossible in a world without other people. Being surrounded by people creates wonderful opportunities for us to become better because we learn from them. As an online marketer, you have to surround yourself with people from whom you can learn to improve your online home business.

However, it’s also possible that we can get into contact with certain people who bring us down and create challenges for us. Using the same example above, I received many blanket and discouraging comments like “stop designing, you will never make money with your poor web designing skills”. But I also received comments that brought out the real issues and guided me on what exactly needed to be done to improve my website. As success-conscious business persons, we have to endeavor to look out for those who improve us and avoid or ignore those who want to drag us down.

Your business environment is not only composed of people. One thing you should know is that there is no business that can operate alone, just like people. Competitors will always be there as long as you continue to operate your business. The government in your respective country will continue to set new rules and regulations governing the way business is done. Google and other search engines will continue to make changes that may affect you either positively or negatively.

Bearing in mind all the above factors and many others that I have not mentioned, it would be unintelligent for a business person not to understand the business environment in which he/she operates because it keeps presenting new situations, new opportunities and new challenges that can either boost your online home business or make it difficult for you to continue operating.

Business environment therefore refers to all factors that are external and beyond the control of the business owner and the business he/she operates. These factors may include legal and political aspects, physical, social and economic aspects, national and international policies. Do you keep yourself updated with the changes in the environment in which you operate?

If you don’t, you may be thinking you are in a comfort zone when things are going bad for you. It’s upon that understanding that I appeal to you to always think about knowing very well the business environment in which you operate in order to position yourself well.