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Posts Tagged ‘shopping’

E-commerce that supports local business

In Business, Economy, finances, Holiday, Local News, National News, Technology, Uncategorized on November 26, 2014 at 4:25 pm
GLD Enterprises Commercial Writing's "e-commerce kiosk," at Amazon.com

GLD Enterprises Commercial Writing’s “e-commerce kiosk,” at Amazon.com

JAMESTOWN, OH – Shoppers are being encouraged to buy from small, local retailers this holiday season, but did you know there was a way to support local business and still buy from Amazon.com? They’re called “Amazon aStores,” and they allow local business to set up a virtual storefront through Amazon.com and offer products of their own choosing.

Retailers can set up what is essentially a virtual kiosk inserted within the company website. Each item is selected individually and can be categorized for easy indexing. Shoppers can then visit the main website for the company, providing the owner with valuable marketing information about how often the site is frequented, and then click on the business’s amazon store to shop further.

The hosting business is then paid an advertising fee by Amazon for each product sold through its store. Such a store doesn’t generate a great deal of revenue, but it can provide some helpful cash flow, if people know to use it.

Gery L. Deer, owner and creative director fro GLD Enterprises of Jamestown, Ohio has three such Amazon stores in operation on different websites. “We do a great deal of work with local authors, and the Amazon store allowed us a way to market the electronic versions of books, as well as other specialized items, often unavailable from local retailers.”

Deer says this kind of pre-packaged e-commerce is a good way for small businesses to have an online sales presence, even if the company is not necessarily a retailer. “Our business is primarily a business-to-business marketing and copywriting agency,” Deer says. “As a service business, we don’t have retail sales, but the products we provide through our online store can benefit the customer by offering another way to both save money on shopping and support local business, all at the same time.” For more information visit Amazon.com.

Here are links to the Amazon stores managed by GLD Enterprises and its partner companies:

GLD Enterprises Commercial Writing Amazon Store: Features locally-authored books and related products. Some product sales benefits the Western Ohio Writers Association.

GLD Enterprises & Production: Features a wide variety of books, electronics, specialty items and locally-authored material.

Deer Computer Consulting, Ltd.: Books, software, electronics, and more “computer” related products.

 

 

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Long holiday season diminishes purpose

In Entertainment, Holiday, Media, Opinion, Uncategorized on November 13, 2013 at 7:13 pm

DIH LOGOMaybe it’s because I’m getting older, but I really don’t understand the concept of having the Christmas holiday season start before the last kid has knocked on the door and yelled, “Trick or treat.” Yet, every year, its arrival seems to advance a few more days.

From artificial Christmas trees to holiday-themed tableware, it all hits the shelves even as parents are still helping the kids carve a Jack-O-Lantern. Then, as if signaled by the dousing of porch lights after Beggars’ Night, municipal workers swiftly hang garland and lamp post banners cheerfully lettered with the bland and ever faith-neutral greeting, “Happy Holidays,” so as to avoid offending anyone.

To cash in on early shoppers this year, Walmart announced it would open at 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day, no doubt in response to the flood of competitors who started opening early last season.  Over the last couple of years, many department stores were criticized for allegedly forcing employees to work on national holidays, supposedly threatening them with dismissal if they failed to show up.

It’s hard to criticize the merchant companies, however, because if people weren’t lining up around the block to get in, they wouldn’t bother opening early. Clearly, shoppers want to get in on the best deals as early as possible and store management simply met their demands. Of course, it’d be easy enough to argue that people wouldn’t do that if merchants weren’t enticing them with exceptional savings. So who is really to blame? I’d say it looks like the fault lies equally with both parties.

Even so, last year some employees went on strike, for lack of a better description, and refused to work on Thanksgiving and Christmas. Many lost their jobs when they didn’t show up for the new holiday shifts, despite intervention by civil liberties supporters.

No one wants to have to work on a holiday unnecessarily. But, and not to be too blunt about it, if you’re going to work a retail job, there are certain responsibilities that come with that – like it or not. An ever-changing, irregular work schedule is probably one of the most common aspects of a retail sales job and if that’s a deal-breaker, you may need to find some other line of work.

So why are more and more retailers backing up the shopping season? Mostly retailers are trying to cash in on a higher volume of sales and make some kind of effort to steer consumers away from online competitors.

Over the last five or six years, holiday purchases have become increasingly Internet based. Many web-savvy shoppers find it far more rewarding and easier to just point and click, even taking advantage of free shipping, gift wrap and last-minute delivery offered by online retailers like Amazon and eBay.

Perhaps you’ve also noticed that TV networks and radio stations are in on the backward rush to ring in the merry season. Networks like Hallmark Channel and Lifetime began showing Christmas-themed movies and television show episodes during the first week of November. Locally, one of the best multi-genre radio stations for in the Dayton, Ohio market, Mix 107.7, has already started playing 24-hour Christmas music.

It’s not that there’s anything wrong with celebrating, or even getting into the spirit of the season a bit early, but doesn’t all this commercialism and dragging out the festivities diminish the purpose of having a holiday? After all it is a – “Holy Day” – holiday; not a holi-month, or holi-quarter. Even Hanukkah has been lumped in with Thanksgiving this year; the whole thing is just becoming a blur of shopping and pointless present-buying.

Maybe it’s time we slow down a bit and think about the point of all of this. This season shouldn’t be about endless shopping or nonstop Christmas media. Whatever your plans may be, remember to reflect on the meaning of the holidays, especially Thanksgiving. Religious or not, be thankful for whatever prosperity you have and share it with those less fortunate however possible. That’s what Christmas is all about.

 

Deer In Headlines author, Gery L. Deer

Deer In Headlines author, Gery L. Deer

Gery L. Deer is an independent columnist and business contributor to WDTN-TV2’s “Living Dayton” program. More at http://www.deerinheadlines.com

Be considerate of those around you

In Food, Health, Opinion, psychology, Senior Lifestyle, sociology, Uncategorized on September 10, 2013 at 9:20 am

DIH LOGODid you ever see someone behaving a certain way at work or in the grocery store and it made you just want to walk up and say to them, “What is wrong with you?” I have; more times than I can remember. On the whole, people annoy me. Maybe it’s because as I get older, I have less patience for “stupid.” It could also be that people are becoming less thoughtful and far more self-centered than ever.

Here’s an example. One afternoon, I had stopped in at on of the big-box, discount megastores to get some orange juice and aspirin. As I stood patiently in the “20 Items or Less” lane, a middle-aged woman in a leopard-print blouse and hair curlers motored past me on one of those electric shopping cart scooters. She was steering the scooter with one hand and with the other she dragged another full sized cart behind her like a trailer.

STORELINEBoth carts were filled to capacity with loads of healthy foods like barrels of cheese balls, cases of beer and soda and, of course, spray cheese. Although there were other check-out lanes open for larger purchases, the woman obliviously whizzed by everyone in the line and parked her rig right in front of me. All of the adjacent lanes were equally full and what was going to be a 5 minute wait was now bordering on a half hour because either she couldn’t read or didn’t understand the meaning of the words, “express lane.”

For a few minutes, I just stood there; a bit stunned at the woman’s total ignorance that she’d completely jumped over at least four others in line ahead of her. I debated whether to say anything but kept quiet. After all, no matter how rude she had been, I would just end up being the mean guy who scolded an apparently disabled older woman on a scooter. It’s a no win. So, I bit my tongue, opened my aspirin bottle, downed two tablets with some of the juice, and waited.

We all have moments when we’re in a hurry, totally consumed by our own interests and feeling like whatever we’re doing should be just as urgent to those around us. But, short of a natural disaster, that’s almost never the case. In fact, most people have absolutely no concern for your interests because they, themselves, are too wrapped up in their own issues. That doesn’t excuse a complete lack of common courtesy, however.

Lately, I’ve noticed it more often in younger people, walking along, even in a store or down the street, with their noses buried in their cell phones, unconscious to the world around them. No one looks up anymore. No one smiles. No one says, “Hello.” People act as if they are traveling in a bubble, where it’s unnecessary or at least undesirable to interact with anyone else in the real world.

I’d like to be able to blame social media and technology for all of this, and it definitely has altered how we behave towards one another. But, ultimately, it’s our own fault. We choose how to act and interact. If all of your interpersonal relations come through Facebook or by text, you might want to consider taking a class or getting a hobby that requires you to intermingle with other people outside of cyberspace.

As for those like my scooter-riding line jumper, I doubt anything will alter their way of thinking. Society will always have its share of self-centered people who have little regard for common sense or good manners. How the rest of us react to their behavior is really what will make the difference.

Maybe if I had complained to the woman in some polite, diplomatic manner, I could have quietly helped her to another line. But, given that she didn’t seem to notice there were other people around her, it’s unlikely she would have responded to reason.

In the end, it was best to keep the peace and let each of my fellow shoppers decide on their own alternate course of action. But to those of you with no regard for others, keep in mind that I may not be so polite next time. Be nice to people. When all is said and done, all we have is each other.

 

Small Business Saturday on WDTN’s Living Dayton, Nov 23.

In Business, Economy, Education, Local News, Media, television, Uncategorized on November 16, 2012 at 12:56 pm

Entrepreneur Gery L. Deer and Living Dayton co-host, Nathalie Basha.

Jamestown entrepreneur featured to discuss buying local.

Dayton, OH – Jamestown writer, entrepreneur Gery L. Deer will be the expert guest on WDTN-Ch2’s Living Dayton program beginning at Noon, Friday November 23rd in a special segment focusing on  Small Business Saturday. As the program’s resident business contributor, Deer will discussing the background and importance of how the November 24th event will generate awareness and sales for local companies.
American Express started Small Business Saturday in 2010 as a way to encourage consumers to support community businesses. The event takes place on the Saturday between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, the two busiest shopping days of the year. Last year, according to Forbes Magazine, more than 100 million consumers shopped local stores and small, online storefronts. The company is providing free logos and marketing materials to participating retailers and a $25 statement credit to their customers who enroll qualified cards and use them to shop at local merchants.
“Small Business Saturday is a great opportunity to spotlight local merchants,” says Deer, creative director and owner of his copywriting, public relations and entertainment firm, GLD Enterprises in Jamestown. “It includes brick and mortar stores as well as locally-owned, online retailers as well.”
Local merchants can take advantage of the program by simply adding the logo to their websites, shop windows and advertisements, to let customers know. Deer also recommends providing an incentive to shoppers. “Providing a discount, free products or other perks to reward them for their patronage. This is a unique opportunity that comes with a national advertising campaign provided, in part, by the publicity generated by American Express.”  However, Deer also emphasizes the importance of patronizing these businesses year around, including professional services and other companies that may not be retail based.
“Shopping local is not merely something we should do during the holiday buying rush, but a regular practice that helps to strengthen the region’s economic base and protect it from national fiscal problems,” Deer says. “We also need to remember that there are hundreds of non-retail businesses in our communities that can provide us with everything from insurance to electrical contracting. They have competitive products and services to benefit everyone.”
Gery L. Deer also serves on the board of advisers for the Fairborn Community Center and as Secretary Treasurer for the Greater Dayton Professionals Chapter of BNI based in Beavercreek, Ohio. Viewers can see his regular business segments airing the first Thursday of each month on Living Dayton live weekdays from Noon until 1pm on television or streaming live from the station’s website at http://www.wdtn.com/generic/video/living-dayton-live-stream.