Differentiating Between Displaying Goods and Effective Merchandising

Posted By: on August 26, 2014

Shoppers are visually attracted to merchandise that is both creatively promoted, and attractively displayed. While the most important reason for business owners to differentiate between displaying goods and truly effective merchandising is profit, there are three primary benefits to accomplishing the task, including successful conversion, customer comfort and shopper loyalty.

Successful conversion

Turning browsers into buyers occurs when shoppers are inspired to own popular goods that their peers are purchasing. Merchandising is much more than arranging products for sale, it’s all about:

  • Clear signage

  • Appealing presentation; and

  • Gaining customers attention

When a customer can visually identify the location of a brand, it allows them the opportunity to approach a display quickly and select a product they may be interested in buying. When products are presented attractively, it’s more difficult for shoppers to pass-by without considering the purchase. Gaining customers attention can be an effective marketing tactic because it welcomes them into the store, keeps them engaged and interested while shopping and fulfills the shopper’s desire to buy.

Customer comfort

Comfortable customers enjoy lingering longer and can take advantage of being immersed in a brand experience. Shoppers get a sense of belonging when they physically spend time in shops that are designed with them in mind. Store appearance and ambiance helps generate new customers, establish existing shopper loyalty and provides a setting for those shopping alongside another to relax and allow their partner to spend time making purchases. Marketing has a considerable branding component to it, now more than ever, which makes shopper loyalty the third, key benefit in effective merchandising.

Shopper loyalty

Creating shopper loyalty isn’t acheived overnight. There are certain aspects that keep customers coming back which include:

  • Customer incentives

  • Product awareness; and

  • Reputation

 An excellent example of how merchandising correlates to product awareness, reputation and shopper loyalty is recognizable when visualizing some of the world’s most popular brands. What these brands all have in common is the way that they are presented to consumers. According to this site, iconic brand retail displays encourage customers to recall products they’re interested in purchasing, by thinking about how the products were tangibly available for them to pick-up. Further, when it comes to kiosks, stands and necessary fixtures to display and merchandise products, such components contribute to the overall look, feel and shopping experience of each brand, making them as valuable as the actual products in some cases.

The difference between effective merchandising and simply displaying goods comes down to the way buyers interpret the sales effort. Products displayed with purpose, and retailers that merchandise effectively, contribute to shopper attitudes about products and enhance the buyers experience by adding perceived value. Incorporating purposeful strategy gets buyers engaged with the products that sellers are promoting and creates a continued desire to acquire additional products down the road. Effective merchandising equals loyal customers and increased revenues every time.

Read On

Cleveland’s Hottest Celebration

Posted By: on August 25, 2014

It’s getting hot in here, but keep your clothes on. “Hot in Cleveland” has reached the 100 episode milestone. To celebrate, they’re giving away $100 and a signed script. To enter, send your congratulatory message to hot.tvland.com. Make sure to tune in August 27th at 10/9C to see the show and learn if you’ve won.

Read On

TopCultured Legends

How to Hack Any Elevator to Go to Your Floor without Stopping

Posted By: on April 2, 2011

It can be extremely annoying to be heading down in an elevator from one of the top floors of a tall building, only to have to stop 10 times on your way. My friends, those Read On »

Taking “Call of Duty” to the Next Level

Posted By: on May 25, 2011

Sometimes, having a good computer and a gun makes sense. In this case, there’s no sense being made.


Posted By: on January 8, 2011

Oh man do I feel bad for this little girl…but really I feel worse for the other two game show contestants. If I answered as she did, especially in light of her opponents, I would Read On »

Process for Hiring Full-Service Moving Companies

Posted By: on August 24, 2014

Moving companies need to take advantage of the Internet in order to attract as many local customers as possible. Professional websites for movers should be developed with a direct call to action on all of the services offered, including storage.

Online Promotions on Moving Company Websites

When relocating, people heavily rely on using the Internet to find local moving companies by using virtual directories and search engines. The process of scanning through bulky printed business directories is quickly phasing out. According to this website, moving companies usually feature authentic customer reviews. Website visitors have the chance to read unbiased feedback from previous customers. Each review for the moving company is often dated and electronically signed with at least the first name of the individual.

All special promotional offers are clearly displayed on the home page of a moving company. For example, deals such as cheap first month’s rates on storage can be prominently displayed on a landing page. For an immediate reply to special moving service promotions, it’s a good idea for customers to call a phone number that operates throughout most of the day. Direct calls are convenient because some customers might not want to fill out any online forms and wait just to get some simple responses about basic moving inquiries.

Checklist for Hiring a Mover

Consumers should not settle down for the first moving company that’s discovered online or through other methods like recommendation from friends. Following a simple checklist for hiring the best mover can save some money and time. All information that’s presented on a website should be verified by directly calling a moving company. Outdated content on websites is often left on neglected web pages that aren’t properly administered by small local moving companies. A final accurate estimate on moving services is done after a staff member visits a home. Customers shouldn’t trust any moving company estimates that are given over the phone or online. After an estimate is given, it’s a good idea to sign an agreement to lock in the given rate when the moving day comes. Customers also have the right to request to see the fleet of a moving company. False advertising on websites sometimes occurs, so it’s a good idea to make sure that a mover actually has trucks and vans.

Insuring the Moving Process

Reliable moving companies always offer some sort of insurance that protects the possessions of clients. A full value protection plan essentially covers the cost of replacement for any items that are damaged during the moving process. If applicable, repairs could also be covered on damaged possessions such as appliances or electronics. A released value insurance plan covers only a specific sum per unit weight of an item. For example, this protection could include a one dollar reimbursement for every pound of items transported by a moving company. Some insurance companies also carry liability plans that cover any expenses such as damage to a home or apartment as a direct result of the moving process.

Read On

Designing From The Inside Out

Posted By: on August 23, 2014

Whenever interior remodeling is required, homeowners will benefit from obtaining an on-site estimate to review ideas and line out budget considerations along side a construction professional who can help with the entire scope of project planning. The remodeling process involves many steps from conception to completion and seeking the help of those with both architectural and interior design skills can help a project stay on budget, plan around common adverse renovation issues and help owners increase overall residential efficiency. Contractors are seasoned professionals and have experience that enables them to plan effectively, anticipate challenges and keep the project timeline moving forward satisfactorily.

Architectural Design

Many elements that homeowners expect from taking on a home renovation include details like affordable ways to bring in more natural light without necessarily adding windows, or making cost-effective updates to a home that look great and increase efficiency even better. The element of architectural design is crucial in a remodel in order to ensure that structural changes will maintain a homes integrity and that specific requirements are met when it comes to areas like the kitchen, bathrooms, walls and ceilings.

Interior Design

Enlisting the expertise of an interior designer in the remodel process allows homeowners to take advantage of incorporating modern updates into their home. Professional designers are experts at recommending details that homeowners may overlook and are able to suggest trends that consumers may be unaware of. Professional construction and design services can help homeowners distinguish between necessary and luxury updates. Moreover, consumers benefit from no-obligation estimates because they establish a contractor-homeowner relationship and give the homeowner a good idea of what they’re signing up for, both financially and opportunely. Interior design trends like U-Sockets, stand-alone-tubs and even cabinetry made from eco-friendly materials are improvements that can be easily added during the renovation process as long as they are part of the plan.

Project Planning

Every successful building project includes five things: A design professional, a sketched-out or schematic plan, a budget, necessary permits, and patients. Flexibility when it comes to project planning is a very fine line. Homeowners will need to make many decisions in order for the renovation to stay on target and conclude within budget. However, homeowners have a narrow scope of vision and professional contractors bring vision to the process. Designers can see the end result amidst a chaotic remodeling backdrop. The good news is, that with the right players on board and a little easygoingness, the entire process will be successful. A home will be structurally sound as well as meet and exceed the homeowners renovation concept.
A professional contractor can navigate the ins and outs of local codes and avoid expensive mistakes or dangerous situations pertaining to the common pitfalls of renovation efforts. Designing from the inside out can really create a space that is both functional and designed aesthetically well. When the architectural aspects are addressed in the correct order, both structure and timeline will be successful. Taking on project planning with an experienced team brings comfort and organization to the entire process.

Read On

3 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Change Your Personal Style for a Relationship

Posted By: on August 22, 2014

Maintaining a relationship involves a certain amount of give and take. But you shouldn’t feel compelled to sacrifice your personal sense of style just because your partner wants you to.

It’s important to think very carefully about alterations to your image: Are you adopting a look that appeals solely to your partner, even if it makes you uncomfortable?

Here are three central factors to consider when it comes to maintaining a relationship that clashes with your individual look.


Partners in a relationship should have the freedom to exercise style without impediment. In fact, your style plays a strong role in building identity.

Your choices with regard to hairstyle, skin care, and clothing are a form of self-expression, and you shouldn’t be asked to give them up. If a partner tries to control the way you express yourself through style, you have to ask yourself: What else will that person try to control?

Listen carefully to what your partner is requesting first, before you jump to any conclusions. Take suggestions into consideration, but be extremely wary of anyone who demands that you change the way you look.


Your approach to beauty and style is unique — at least it should be — and it certainly plays a role in attraction. If your partner urges you to make a wardrobe or hairstyle change, think about the implications behind the request.

Is he or she urging you to adopt a style that’s similar to other people at your workplace or in your neighborhood? The urge to conform can be extremely powerful, and it might even drive someone to ask a partner to alter his or her appearance.

But is the change actually worth it? If you’re satisfied with your own look, then continue to express yourself.


It can be a major warning sign if your partner is trying to exercise control over your personal sense of style. Sit down with your significant other and talk about the expectations in play.

If your style hasn’t bothered this person before, find out what’s changed. Make it clear that you expect a certain degree of individual freedom when it comes to your style and beauty regimen.

You should be able to care for your skin, hair, and wardrobe in the way that you best see fit. Don’t bend to unrealistic expectations harbored by your partner.

People constantly express their individuality through clothing, makeup, and beauty products. If your partner becomes overbearing with regard to your choice of fashion, then it’s time to have a talk about relationship expectations.

You should always feel empowered to make the choices that are right for you.

Read On

3 Ways Your Relationship with Your Doctor is the Most Important

Posted By: on August 19, 2014

Doctor and patient

Any relationship takes work, and you need to find the right match to make the most of it. This is true in romantic endeavors as well as finding the right doctor. Unfortunately, most people settle when it comes to finding an MD, psychologist or other medical professional. They (hopefully) choose someone who’s in their network and nearby and call it good. The reality is that you need to “date” when it comes to choosing a doctor just like with your romantic life.

Finding the right doctor for you isn’t always fast or easy. Maybe you’re a better match for an online doctor that works around your hectic schedule, or maybe you prefer an internist instead of a GP. Start by making a list of what you want in a doctor, just like you would when you’re re-entering the dating field. Otherwise, you might get sidetracked by the allure of someone who went to Harvard even though their personality clashes with yours.

Here are a few ways your relationship with your doctor is the most important in your life and how to make the most of it.

1. They hold your life in their hands

This might sound dramatic, but it’s true. If you’re ever faced with a life-threatening disease, catching it early is key and that’s exactly what a good doctor does. Plus, they hold you accountable and will make sure you keep up with your routine check ins. Remember what a doctor is really for: Optimizing your health, preventative care and taking the best care of you in worst case scenarios.

2. They call you out

For some reason, many people lie to themselves and to their doctor when it’s not doing anyone good. Reputable doctors might require weight check-ins during every visit (even if you see them once a week) because keeping an eye on your BMI is a big indicator of other issues. Other doctors might not sugarcoat things, and that might be just what you need.

3. They keep you calm

Everyone has a touch of hypochondriac in them, and a great doctor knows how to deal with this. It’s normal to worry, and when a doctor works around your schedule and always makes time to see you (or talk to you), they can help you reduce stress.

Every relationship in your life is important, but only a doctor has the background and skills to keep you healthy. You deserve a great relationship that’s on your own terms.


Read On

2015 Buick Regal: Living up to its Name

Posted By: on August 17, 2014

2015 Buick Regal

The Buick Regal has had a very long history of being a great mid-sized sedan that has been popular with many generations. The Regal for many years seemed to be the one Buick that didn’t attract only the retired generation but instead was a symbol of comfort, style and luxury that anyone would be proud to own and drive. Now that Buick has partnered with the European automaker Opel, many in the lineup now have a distinctly European feel to them and the Regal is no exception to that statement offering a distinct character that reminds anyone who has spent time in Europe of their class of vehicles.

The Regal enters the fray by adding a lot more technology to the interior allowing connectivity throughout the vehicle and keeping drivers and passengers connected. This allows the Regal to compete on a high level with the Audi A4, Volkswagen CC and Acura TLX. As stated the new features for 2015 include the new 4G LTE connectivity in the OnStar system creating a Wi-Fi hotspot for anyone to stay connected on the road. The Regal did not leave out its iPhone users either by adding the Siri Eyes Free technology to this great vehicle.

As one of the best and most uncompromising vehicles on the road the Regal offers drivers everything they could want when behind the wheel. With an expertly tuned suspension the car handles all road defects with ease and experience. The steering is substantial and smooth allowing for a very easy and comfortable ride. As a luxury-oriented sedan the Regal is equipped with one of the quietest cabins on the market making it easy to have a family sing-along or for owners to leave the busy workday behind as they drive home after a long day at work.

According to Miami Buick, two engines and three differing setups are offered on the Buick Regal starting with the base engine which comes in the form of a 2.0-liter turbocharged inline four-cylinder engine offering 259 horsepower and 295 lb.-ft. of torque. This engine is married up with a six-speed automatic transmission that helps to gain a fuel efficiency of 21 city/30 hwy mpg for the front-wheel drive version and 19 city/27 hwy mpg for the all-wheel drive models.

Taking the same engine and putting it in the Regal GS model offers the availability of a manual transmission when desired. This set up offers the same power numbers and the automatic is the same transmission. The fuel efficiency number come in a little differently with the manual transmission achieving 20 city/31 hwy mpg, the automatic in front-wheel drive reaches 21 city/30 hwy mpg and the all-wheel drive automatic achieves 19 city/27 hwy mpg. The manual is not available for an all-wheel drive model across all Regal models.

The second engine offered is a 2.4-liter inline four-cylinder engine that is an eAssist mild hybrid engine that reaches 182 horsepower and 172 lb.-ft. of torque. Mated to the same six-speed automatic transmission this powertrain will achieve 25 city/36 hwy mpg worth of fuel economy to enjoy by using a dual-function generator/motor and a lithium-ion battery pack to help take the burden off the engine entirely.

As a premium sedan the Regal needs to caress and coddle the driver and all passenger and this car does so in grand design and fashion. All materials are top notch, soft, well positioned and very eye-catching. The complete level of sophistication inside the Regal is more than exemplary for the Buick lineup. There is more than ample space throughout the cabin for all inhabitants to enjoy the ride and with added touches of two-toned beauty and wood accents this car really makes anyone inside feel special and well taken care of.

On the outside the Regal offers a very classy look starting with the signature chrome waterfall grill that is situated between two royal looking headlights that draw the eye toward the rear of the car. The stance of this car is, well Regal as the name states with a strong presence and very upscale trim the car truly makes a signature status statement when driving or as it is parked. The final exterior feature is the full set of star-fan inspired wheels that just look both impressive and menacing at the same time.

As for standard equipment, the Regal offers a very impressive list including leather upholstery, 12-way driver and passenger seats, heated front seats, dual-zone climate control, an eight-inch color touch screen with Buick’s IntelliLink infotainment system, a rearview camera, Bluetooth connectivity, a seven-speaker audio system, USB ports, 17-inch aluminum-alloy wheels, GM’s StabiliTrack stability control, traction control and antilock brakes with brake assist. With this menu of features on board the Regal even at the base model is a car that will make any driver very happy behind the wheel.

The optional equipment offered for the Buick Regal include all-wheel drive as the only stand-alone feature with all others being grouped into packages. These packages start with the Premium I package that is made up of the eAssist mild hybrid engine. The Premium II package that improves the standard turbocharged engine. With either Premium package features are added including keyless entry, push-button starting, a remote starting system, a heated steering wheel, a hard-drive based navigation system, a power sunroof, 18-inche aluminum-alloy wheels, HID headlights, adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitoring, lane departure warnings and rear cross traffic alerts. Putting all these optional features into a Regal will create a car that many will not want to every step out of and might just choose to have a rolling office to work from.

The 2015 Buick Regal starts with a very reasonable opening price point of $30,700 for the base model and moves up to $32,600 for the Premium I package and just below $35,000 for the Premium II package. The GS model will add a bit of sport and 20-inch wheels for an asking price of a little more than $38,000. These prices and all the features listed make the Buick Regal one of the most affordable nearly-luxury cars offered for the new model year.

Read On

Why Product Startups Need an Attorney on Retainer

Posted By: on August 15, 2014

You’ve dreamt of having your own company for years, and when you finally manufacturer an in-demand product, it’s easy to get caught up in the excitement. You get a great marketing team on board, start scheduling sales pitches to the big companies, and hopefully get your finances in order with a solid CPA. However, one thing many entrepreneurs overlook is a good attorney: You need to prepare for the worst.

An attorney who specializes in product liability lawsuits can make a huge difference in the success of your business. It doesn’t matter how many studies and beta tests you undertook before releasing your product on the market. Even the most stringent of testers can let something slip through the cracks. Maybe it’s a choking hazard you didn’t catch or a rare reaction to one of the materials. If you’re slapped with a lawsuit, that can take down your startup before it really takes off.

Aren’t lawyers expensive?

Just like any other professional, lawyers are costly because they ear their keep. Don’t wait until you’re facing a lawsuit to scramble and find an attorney. You won’t be thinking clearly, won’t have time to do your research, and you’ll be trusting a total stranger who doesn’t know you or your company with your “baby.” Instead, take the time know to interview attorneys who specialize in product liability. If they’re used to working with startups, that’s all the better.

Ask about their previous experience and take their background (including schooling) into account. However, what’s most important is that you’re comfortable with them and your gut tells you this is a match. If you do ever face a lawsuit, you’re going to be spending a lot of time with your attorney. That’s going to be pretty miserable if your personalities clash.

The smart approach

Having an attorney on retainer is actually very affordable and it’s a tax write-off for many small business owners. It simply means they’ve agreed to have your back for a small financial promise on your part. Oftentimes, these retainers are applied to any legal fees that you may accumulate in the future. If you don’t have an attorney on retainer, you have no safety net and you’ll have to settle for a lawyer who has plenty of spare time in a crunch (and who wants a lawyer with nothing better to do?).

Getting an attorney on retainer isn’t just smart, it’s a must for businesses.

Read On

4 Ideas for Your Next Company Party

Posted By: on August 14, 2014


Are you getting tired of going to the same old happy hour with your work crew week after week? Do you want something besides a limo wine tour (and, honestly, are you simply sick of wine as the only libation)? If your company likes to party and the drinks are always flowing, it’s time to get creative. That means something more than checking out the other pub right across the street for a change. Spoiler alert: Whiskey sodas are whiskey sodas no matter where you go.

You can play tourist in your own city even if you’re a native. How about going out on a limb, getting a little exercise, or tapping into some of the unknown gems around town? The next time your company has a get together, try one of these options on for size. You never know who might loosen up in the right environment.

1. Brewery trip party bus

Sure, limos are fancy and the perfect accoutrement to a wine tasting, but when it’s a brewery tour you need a party bus. You can go for posh, or you can go hardcore with a remodeled school bus. Check out the party bus options in your city and you’ll surely find one that’s a perfect match for your company vibe. Save this one for special occasions though since it sets the “bar” high.

2. Head to a brew fest

Most cities are rich with drink festivals, especially in the summer months, and staying together as a group while you head from booth to booth is a great way to bond. Plus, you’ll have musical and food samplings at your fingertips. It’ll also allow for some great PR shots.

3. Go grape stomping

If you’re lucky enough to live in a region with a lot of wineries, check out their special events like grape stomping. This happens in the autumn, and it’s a great option if you have some co-workers who don’t drink (but don’t have a problem helping out those who do). It’s an experience you’ll never forget.

4. Find a pet-friendly pub

Increasingly, there are drinking establishments that are pet-friendly and you can host a “Bring Your Pet to Work Happy Hour” event. Even for those who don’t have furry friends, it’s a great way to meet your co-workers fur babies. Just make sure you ask about allergies first.

There are limitless ways to up the fun factor of work drinking fests. Why stick with the same old routine?

Read On

4 Ways to Protect Personal and Company Data on Your BYOD Device

Posted By: on August 13, 2014

protecting-your-privacy (1)

Does your personal tablet or smartphone work double-time in the office and at home? Do your supervisors expect employees to bring their own devices to the workplace?

While this can increase productivity and reduce your company’s overhead, it can also create privacy issues for you as an individual as well as the organization you represent. Take a look at these following four best practices to have in place on your BYOD technology to protect both your personal and professional data.

1. Passcodes

Company confidentiality can quickly become breached if a mobile device isn’t protected by suitable security passcodes. If your smartphone or tablet gets lost or stolen, anyone might be able to gain access to client information, internal documents, and your personal social media accounts.

Set up passcode protections on your mobile devices to prevent unauthorized users from snooping through your data. This simple security measure can give both you and your bosses peace of mind.

2. Encrypted backups

Data thieves can also view private mobile data on the computers you use for backups. If possible, select backup encryption options, so these archives cannot be opened and exploited.

When you do that, the data on these backups are scrambled so that only authorized users can manage them.

3. App permissions

Accidentally opening your work data in personal apps or vice versa can lead to some uncomfortable situations. For example, you don’t want to share your personal photos accidentally on the cloud server at work.

Explore your app privacy settings to restrict access and prevent accidental cross-sharing. Go through the restriction settings and MDM security solutions with your IT department to set up permissions that will prevent data leaks.

If you notice vulnerable apps and workflows, be sure to mention them to the appropriate channels, since they could pose a data risk to other employers who use BYOD technology.

4. Remote wipe

Many mobile devices come with remote-wipe features that allow you to erase a device as soon as it gets lost or stolen. This can be immensely helpful if you have sensitive personal information or confidential work data stored on your smartphone or tablet.

Personal and professional data protection should be a high priority for anyone who participates in BYOD tech strategies, since data leaks can lead to legal problems relating to business confidentiality. Protect your data by following the above series of best practices: locking your device, encrypting backups, using remote wipe, and paying attention to privacy settings.

Read On

A 1990s Childhood

Posted By: on December 9, 2010 on December 9, 2010

Who Wore It Best: Celebrity Cleavage Edition

Posted By: on November 11, 2009 on November 11, 2009

40 of the Best (but Mostly Worst) Oompa Loompas

Posted By: on January 12, 2010 on January 12, 2010

12 Hot Chicks Chowing Down

Posted By: on January 17, 2011 on January 17, 2011

15 Pics of Hot Girls with Balls

Posted By: on January 4, 2011 on January 4, 2011

30 of the Best Cars From Gumball 3000

Posted By: on February 20, 2010 on February 20, 2010

15 Pictures of Santa Getting Arrested

Posted By: on December 13, 2010 on December 13, 2010

Albert Einstein’s 10 Best Quotes

Posted By: on February 19, 2011 on February 19, 2011

25 Hottest Shay Maria Photos

Posted By: on December 9, 2010 on December 9, 2010
amber heard 1

20 Amber Heard Photos That Bring The Heat

Posted By: on December 15, 2010 on December 15, 2010
sexy cowgirl

15 Hot Cowgirls… Yeehaw!

Posted By: on January 11, 2011 on January 11, 2011

40 Hilarious Fortune Cookies Fortunes

Posted By: on August 11, 2010 on August 11, 2010
monster tip jar

30 Tip Jars Designed to Make You Give More

Posted By: on February 12, 2011 on February 12, 2011

68 Awesome 404 Error Pages

Posted By: on January 24, 2011 on January 24, 2011
sexy kitchen 1

15 Sexy Mrs. Claus

Posted By: on December 3, 2010 on December 3, 2010

A Couple $100 Reasons To Hate Celebrities

Posted By: on March 10, 2010 on March 10, 2010

18 Hot Chicks You Can Barely See (Cause They’re Wearing Camo)

Posted By: on January 5, 2011 on January 5, 2011

Awesome Childhood Characters Restyled

Posted By: on January 11, 2011 on January 11, 2011

Awesome Class of 2010 Senior Post-It Prank

Posted By: on May 29, 2010 on May 29, 2010

16 Pics of Hot Chicks Cleaning Things

Posted By: on January 6, 2011 on January 6, 2011

30 Loveable Animals Waving “Hi”

Posted By: on October 20, 2010 on October 20, 2010