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3 Main Types of Business Assets

Business and assets go hand-in-hand and both need to be protected. Sometimes we don’t understand exactly what assets are and how to protect them. In this article, we will be looking at the 3 main types of assets that your business can have. This should help bring some clarity. You can also read this article about how to protect your assets. Many of our other articles will give you valuable information about assets, loss prevention, risk management and more. All of these things go together to ensure that your business and your assets are protected.

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1. Intellectual Property

Intellectual property are assets that are intangible. Examples of intellectual property include trademarks, logos, brand names, patents, formulas, inventions, songs, manuscripts, content, recipes, etc. All of these things are intellectual and don’t necessarily have a physical format. Intellectual property is especially important and valuable today due to so many things being online. People are working and writing and creating online and for companies far away. So, all these assets can probably be found on a device that can be hacked or easily accessed. It is very important to make sure that your intellectual property assets are protected. These types of assets are often very close to the main drive or the center of everything that makes the business run.

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2. Tangible Assets

Tangible assets are exactly that, tangible. You can see it, you can touch, it, and it can most likely break or be damaged in some way. Examples of tangible assets include office equipment, factory equipment, buildings, vehicles, machinery, stock, etc. These assets are central to the operation of the business and they are often also the most expensive assets in the business. Unlike intellectual property, tangible assets can depreciate or get worn out. This means that they will likely need services, repairs, or replacement at some point in the future.

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3. Intangible Assets

Intangible assets have to do with things that make the business look and sound good. They have no physical form but they can change or become negative. Examples of intangible assets include trade secrets, industry knowledge, business reputation, credibility, company know-how, talents, etc. All of these assets have an influence on how the business is perceived from the outside. It influences credibility and whether people will trust your business. When intangible assets are good and positive, it increases the value of the business and can even lead to more profits.

These three types of assets are all necessary for a business to run. Some are easier to destroy or copy or steal than others, but they are all necessary and important. Intangible assets and intellectual property are very closely related and they are also the things that can make or break a business. Be sure to keep your assets protected so your business can keep growing and improving and acquiring new assets.

6 Operational Compliance Tips for Your Retail Business

Compliance is important to keep your business legal, above board, and credible. Compliance is relevant in different areas of the business and can include operations, health and safety, customer service, etc. In order to stay in line with the legal and other compliance requirements, consider the tips listed below. These will help you understand where to start and how to ensure that you stay compliant.

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Know what you need to comply with – If you don’t know what the compliance requirements are, you won’t know if you are compliant. Find out what the legal, operational, health and safety and other requirements are for you to be seen as compliant. You should be able to find helpful information on the web as well as from your local government.

Don’t do it alone – Trying to get and keep your business compliant by yourself is insane. There are so many things that you need to consider and implement that you may not be able to keep track. It is better to involve the different departments in your business and trustworthy employees to help you keep things compliant. By involving other people and assigning certain things to them, you will find it easier to remain compliant and it will also be easier to change things when needed.

Keep up with changes – Laws and regulations change every now and then and you should find a way to stay on top of these changes. If you are not aware of changes, your business may become non-compliant and cause issues that you may not even be aware of.

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Use technology – Technology advances are happening everyday and there are new great apps and programs on the market almost weekly. There are many apps, programs, and other technology devices that can help you keep your business compliant. Assess what your company needs and do some research n available tech that may help you. We guarantee you will at least find one device or program that can help keep you compliant.

Do due diligence – Due diligence is important and is definitely part of compliance. It is also very important to if your company gets audited regularly. This is one of the things that can help your business stay in the clear and out of trouble.

Understand the laws of other countries – If you do business with overseas countries, you need to know what their compliance requirements are. The laws and requirements are not the same everywhere in the world and you will have to ensure that you are compliant according to their expectations as well. If you are not, your business may lose important partnerships or business because of it.

Compliance can get tricky especially if you’re trading online or have partners or clients overseas. Not only will you need to have compliance, but also good risk management. The digital world has opened many great doors but it also brought a whole bunch of new problems with it. If you want your business to be respected, successful, and credible, you need to do wat is necessary for full compliance. If you find yourself drowning, hire a company to help you out.

6 Tips for Asset Protection

Every business has different types of assets. These assets are important for your livelihood, the business’ success, and to basically keep the business alive. This means that you should put a lot of thought and effort into protecting these assets.

Follow these tips and you will be on the right track to protecting your business assets.

  1. Plan before the claim. Waiting until something goes wrong or a claim needs to happen, is bad practice. You should plan ahead and have an asset protection plan in place from the beginning. As the business grows and changes and the economic and legal environment changes, you may need to adjust the plan, but you should at least have some plan to start with.
  2. Split your assets. Keeping all your assets under one entity is not a good idea. Your personal and business assets should be split and held in separate entities. Furthermore, if you have more than one business, keep those separate as well. For example, keep your realty under one LLC and your restaurant under another entity. This is the best way to prevent all your assets from being exposed should something go wrong.
  3. Get insurance. You can’t be without insurance. The type and extent will depend on the nature of your business and the risks involved. Insurance companies will have different options and a consultant will be able to help you decide what the best option will be for your specific business.
  4. Bankruptcy laws have changed. Don’t count on bankruptcy when things go wrong. The laws have changed and there are now a lot of requirements and also lower homestead exemptions. You will have to see a credit counsellor for 6 months before you file for bankruptcy and you will be required to attend money management classes.
  5. Keep it simple. Simple is the best policy. Some companies come up with these large and complicated asset management plans that they can’t even explain to someone else. If you cannot understand what the plan is, how will you be able to implement and manage it? So, rather keep it simple, easy to understand, but strong and smart.
  6. Hire an asset management company. If you are unsure about how to go about building an asset management plan or if you need some expert advice, consider hiring an asset management company like Asset Protection Associates. These companies have professionals that are trained and experts in how to manage and protect your assets. They will help you set up a simple but effective plan. They will also advise you on what types of strategies to use and how to divide your assets to keep them safe.

Asset management and protection are very important and you should not skimp on this aspect. If you don’t properly plan for asset protection, you may regret it later. So, play it smart, play it simple, and stay in business.

You may also be interested in ‘Loss Prevention Tips for Retail Stores’.

Solve Your Marketing Problem with Internet Marketing Solutions

Increasing brand popularity requires a certain level of technical expertise from an implementer in order to ensure that a brand’s goals are achieved efficiently. With that said, entrepreneurs start advertising their business by implementing hit and miss strategies, and this is one of the reasons why a lot of businesses are failing unexpectedly.

The good news is, entrepreneurs, can now hire a company to implement traditional or internet marketing solutions such as Nashua NH web marketing which can give you the results that you want.

Internet marketing is only one of the various digital marketing strategies which many businesses opt for, and it can get even more technical in a sense that there are many types of internet marketing which an internet marketing management agency can implement.

As long as you hire the top online marketing companies to do the job, you will surely enjoy the advantages of internet marketing for your business, no matter which types of internet marketing are implemented.

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Internet Marketing Solutions to Enhance Brand Reputation

If you are struggling with your current marketing strategies, then internet marketing solutions are now available for you to deal with it. Most top online marketing companies can offer you services to do so, and most of them design creative solutions (like SEO and pay per click, PPC) which are proven to work, today. With that said, the top online marketing companies can provide you internet marketing solutions (such as SEO) to enhance your brand’s visibility in the market.

In doing so, solutions such as different types of internet marketing strategies (like SEO) will be implemented to directly or indirectly advertise your brand. Many top online marketing companies may recommend that you start with a search engine optimization (SEO) strategy and couple it with social media marketing, but whatever service they will be providing, these professionals can assure you that you will be getting the results that you want.


Advantages of Internet Marketing

There are many advantages of internet marketing, and its main advantage is that internet marketing solutions can help many brands increase market visibility which, in turn, can help a small, local business go big in the future. Depending on the types of internet marketing strategies and internet marketing solutions are implemented, consultants can help you experience a positive development for your business and generate internet traffic to your social media and web pages.


Hire Top Online Marketing Companies

You are going to get real solutions and results if you hire the top internet marketing firms to help you become one of the leading brands in your industry, today. The leading agency in the market today usually offers top of the line services which many businesses can avail of, and in turn, this can help them enjoy the advantages of internet marketing and provide solutions to internet marketing problems.

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Determine the Types of Internet Marketing which Work

You can maximize the advantages of internet marketing if you know which solutions work and which don’t, through research. Doing an advance homework can help you save time and money, especially since not all internet marketing services and solutions are affordable. Take advantage of getting such services for your brand, enjoy the benefits that the top companies can offer you, and experience a positive development for your business today.

The Benefits of Auditing Services for Your Business

Auditing is good for your business. If you don’t agree, you may need to re-evaluate your operations and methods. Auditing helps businesses to identify problems, solve problems, and improve. Auditing has many benefits or advantages for businesses and we would like to share some of these. If these benefits don’t convince you, also read this article on why you should hire auditing services.

Asset Protection Associates has seen many businesses prosper and grow exponentially after making use of auditing services. Here’s why:

It shows you whether you are in line with what is expected. Auditing looks at processes and procedures and checks whether your business is performing in line with these requirements. If your business is off or was unaware of changes, the auditor will help you understand where the problem lies and how to fix it.

It prevents fraud. When employees know that auditing is part of your business processes, they will be less likely to commit fraud. If your books and procedures are audited annually, any discrepancies will stand out immediately and indicate a problem. It will place the fraudster in a difficult position if they do decide to go for it.

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It shows whether your processes are effective or not. Profits and losses will be highlighted in an audit and will also help you realize if certain processes or practices are being effective or not. This puts you in the great position to make changes that will increase profits, reduce losses, and increase efficiency in your business.

It forces you to be vigilant and organized. If you can expect and audit on regular intervals, you will be forced to put in place systems to keep records and documentation in order and above board. This will prevent chaotic and panicky scrambles to set things in order when the auditor comes. Everything will already be in place and ready for auditing.

It adds credibility. If your business is audited regularly and people know that, they will come to trust your business. When a business is audited with good results, it adds credibility and builds a positive and trustworthy reputation. Credibility can only benefit your business.

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It increases sales. This point is a combination of a few others. Improvements and better efficiency combined with credibility and a good reputation will make people want to shop with you. When word gets out that your business is efficient and credible, more people will buy from you.

It will create a positive working environment. Because no-one will be able to get away with illegal activities and the admin side of things will be well-planned, the work environment will have less stress and less trust issues. With fewer security concerns and less stress, employees will be more relaxed and focused on doing their jobs. This will create a great and positive working environment with positive employees.

Auditing is necessary and very beneficial to companies for many reasons. Consider hiring an auditing company that also offers other services like mystery shopping and risk management.

5 Tips for a Becoming a Good Mystery Shopper

Being a mystery shopper is a fun job, but it is also quite serious. A mystery shopper’s evaluation of a company and the resulting feedback are used to help companies change, grow, and improve. This means that these things must be taken seriously and done very well. If you are a mystery shopper or want to become one, this article will help you be the best shopper you can be.

1. Choose the Right Companies

To start off with, you need to make sure that you choose the right companies to work with. There are scammers out there that will try and lure you. Be alert, be aware, and do your research on companies that hire mystery shoppers. A company like Asset Protection Associates is a legitimate service provider and can be trusted. Choose companies that have a good track-record and has been successfully operational for several years. Avoid companies that give free money or offer vacations and also beware of companies that require you to pay a fee to get hired. These are scams.

2. Choose Your Niche

Every shopper’s experience will be taken into account because experience in a certain field will help with insights and evaluations. After you have done a few shops, you will start realising which ones you enjoy more and you do better. You can then decide to focus more on companies and shops that work in these areas. For example, if you have a dance background, you will be ideal to be a mystery shopper at dance schools.

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3. Have a Good Work Ethic

Work ethic and integrity are two of the most important characteristics that mystery shopper companies look for. They want shoppers who can be trusted, who will be loyal, and who will deliver work on time. They also look for people who will be committed to their responsibilities and the needs of the client. If you want to be a great mystery shopper, develop these skills and always be honest, on time, and professional.

4. Keep Records

Organizational skills are important if you want to be a great shopper. You should have templates with all your details for applying to different companies. You should keep copies of all the narratives or evaluations that you do. Also keep record of all payments. You should be well prepared by checking new assignments daily and planning how you will fit the shops in with your other activities. Plan your shops in a diary and make sure to be dressed and prepared for each and every shop. Each job is different and you should follow the requirements closely.

5. Remember Details

Your report or feedback must be as detailed and accurate as possible. Try to use memory techniques to remember names and specific details that are important. You can’t just whip out a notebook and start making notes, so take notice and remember until you can write it down. You can also record comments or record the whole interaction if that would help. These recordings should only be used for the purpose of writing your narrative.

Like we said, organization and planning is crucial to be a great mystery shopper. Plan, schedule, and enjoy. The more you do it, the easier it gets and you will start finding the best ways for you to go about each job and also how to best remember details.

How to Prepare for a Business Audit

Internal or business audits can be quite intense. If you and your employees prepare well, the process should be relatively painless and fast. There are some things you can do to get you ready and prepared for when the auditor arrives. The most important thing to remember is to keep your side clean, be professional and transparent, and be prepared.

As an auditing services provider, Asset Protection Associates knows a thing or two about the process. Here are a few things you can do to get yourself prepared.

Know what is being audited – Ask for a scope for the audit if one is not provided. This will help you prepare the necessary documents and also inform employees of what to expect. Make sure that you are clear on the scope and the requirements of the auditor.

Know the schedule – Auditing generally takes more than a day. Ask for a schedule of what the auditor will be doing when. This will help you prepare the employees and also make plans to ensure that key role players are available at the right time.

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Prepare documents and records – The auditor will be looking at many different things including compliance, performance, finances and more. You should prepare and have all these records neat and ready for when the auditor comes. Best practice is to keep these records, plans, and other documents sorted and filed throughout the year. That makes the whole process a lot easier.

Prepare your employees – Your employees should know what to expect from the audit and also what will be expected from them. If they may be interviewed, they need to know and also know what they should prepare. They must always be honest, professional and knowledgeable about the company processes and systems.

Be calm and available. During the auditing process, your employees will look to you for guidance and reassurance. Always be calm and go about your business as usual. If you’re not hiding anything, everything should be fine. You should also be available to the auditor at all times as questions may arise throughout the process. Not only your employees need to know their stuff, you do too.

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Treat the auditor well. Make sure that the auditor will have a workspace with all the necessary things like a computer, printer, desk, chair, etc. Also make sure that someone looks after him or her by making coffee, arranging for meals, etc. When the auditor is set up well, the process will flow much faster.

Auditing services are a good thing if you want to ensure that your business remains above board and also to help you improve. Auditing is a tool that should be utilized to your advantage. If you are organized and prepared throughout the year, an audit should be no big deal and it should go fast. If you’re still not convinced that auditing is a good thing, look at the reasons why you need auditing.

Top 5 Management Risks and How to Deal with Them

Any business comes with management risks and this is true for retail trade stores as well. There are many risks that need to be identified and managed. Today, we want to take a look at the top 5 risks that can cause problems for your business. It is important to be able to identify these problems and also successfully deal with them before they become a problem. Risk management solutions are important and you should consider hiring a company to help you if you’re not sure how to approach it.

These are the top 5 risks that you can expect and will need to deal with:

Loss of property, stock, or money. Theft and loss of stock is the most common risk. Employees or customers can steal from the store. Employees can give things away for free without telling anyone. Stock can get lost. Your property may be damaged due to fire or water damage. All of these things cause loss in some way. To deal with it, you need to ensure that you have strict security policies in place and that you can easily catch and deal with thieves. You should also make sure to get business interruption insurance or something similar to prepare for when your store may need to close for repairs.

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Injury of employees and customers. We often hear of lawsuits against companies by employers who got injured on the job. The same with customer injuries. Lawsuits can cost a lot of money and cause your reputation to take a dip. You can prevent injury by ensuring that there are no hazards in your store. Things like loose wires, loose tiles, stairs without railings, slippery floors, sharp or protruding objects, etc. should be taken care of. You or your employees should do regular sweeps of the store during the day to ensure that customers are safe. You also need to ensure that your staff will not be put in a situation where they can get injured.

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Security breaches. We live in a digital world in which it is becoming increasingly easy to hack and steal data. There are many ways in which this breach can take place including physical documents or information being copied or taken, system hacks, credit card system problems, and more. You may even experience people hacking your website or emails to try and get information on your finances or business processes. It may sound far-fetched, but unfortunately it is a very real threat.

Competition. Competition in the market is healthy and needed. However, if you are a small business or store and a big corporate or commercial chain store opens up near you, chances are you will experience some reduction in customers. To add insult to injury, you now need to also keep an eye on online competition because business is no longer restricted to brick and mortar. Be prepared for the competition and instead of panicking, adjust to the new environment and make sure that you still offer the best products and services.

Risk is part of running a business and you should face it head on. Preparation and having plans in place for every eventuality is the best way to help keep your business out of trouble. For tips on loss prevention, go here.

Why You Need a Business Plan: Its Importance and Purpose for Your Enterprise

Planning is one key to success.

In business, planning ahead and projecting where you want and expect for your business to go and grow is one of the most important initial steps toward launching and establishing, and eventually running and operating any business venture. This is the reason why a business plan is a must for any budding enterprise, or even an already established company.

Why a Business Plan Is a Must

Why a Business Plan Is a Must

Your business plan is the blueprint, practically the theoretical backbone, of your business. You can constantly refer back to it especially when you think your business may be experiencing some sidetrack. In such circumstance, you may make tweaks along the way of business operations on some parts and segments of your business plan as needed.

You can continually make these changes as necessary but it is important to always have it on hand for your reference to return to as you create a business or carry on thriving in an existing business.

Writing a structured and formal business plan will also make you learn more about the venture which you are getting into and help you become more analytical about how a business works.

Presented here are the reasons for you to take the time to invest in and thoroughly think out writing a business plan.

Why You Need to Write a Business Plan: The Importance and Purposes of a Business Plan for Your Company to Succeed

The Mission and Vision: You Will Set Your Goals and Objectives for Your Company

Through a business plan, you will set your goals and objectives for your company and actually see it in writing which can be an effective way of motivating and encouraging you even more to adhere to these goals and objectives which you yourself have decided on.

You will be able to clearly see your reasons from a more formal, constructive and professional perspective for getting into and creating your chosen business in the first place.

The Marketing, Financial and Operational Plans: You Will Be Able to Study the Efficiency of Your Business Operations and the Likelihood That Your Target Market Will Buy Your Products or Services

The marketing, financial and operational plans are an integral part of any business plan.

Through the marketing, financial and operational plans, you will be able to calculate and project the resources which you will need during the production phase of your items, or the actual operations in case your company will be offering services instead.

On this section of the business plan, you will lay out the schedule and timing of production, the labor requirement and the requirement for equipment and raw materials. Quality control system will also fall under the marketing, financial and operational plans.

Moreover, this can help you project your sales and profits based on the population of your target market in a particular area coverage. Here, you will program the marketing and advertising strategies to introduce your business and make it known to as many potential clients as your marketing initiatives can reach.

The Organizational Plan You Will Better Understand the Legal Form of Business

The Organizational Plan: You Will Better Understand the Legal Form of Business

You can list the necessary certifications and accreditations which will identify the reputability and reliability of your company. You will also need to list the permits to operate and where to obtain them. When you have a business plan, you are sure to not miss any of these important aspects of legalities involved in running a business.

You will understand and see from a clearer point of view how much workforce you will need for business efficiency. You will also gain better knowledge about charting your people’s business activities. There is also the consideration of administrative and office expenses.

All these you will have to jot down on a business plan. In this way, your analysis and aspirations for your company will not be a clutter because you have every aspect mapped out on a written business plan.

Reasons Why Your Company Should Hire Mystery Shopping Services

Mystery shoppers have become a very lucrative business in recent years. The mystery shopper services help companies in many ways. Companies that have used these services have great things to say about it and says that it has helped them improve their business operations immensely. At Asset Protection Associates, we offer mystery shopper services and people can also apply to become shoppers. Mystery shopping is definitely something your business should try if you want to improve and become more efficient.

So, why should you make use of mystery shoppers?

1. Improved Customer Service

Mystery shoppers can give valuable feedback about how they are treated as customers. This can be in-store, by email, or phone call. By telling the employer how he or she was greeted, treated and helped by employees, they help the business improve on areas that cause problems. It shows where employees may need more training and where they are doing well.

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2. Marketing Information

Marketing is a big part of making a business successful. Today, the process has become more complex because of online marketing. Mystery shoppers can help companies by identifying which campaigns draw them and why they would or wouldn’t buy from them. This helps the company to adapt its marketing strategies to be more effective.

3. Identify Problems

Problems is broad and can include everything from employees conducting illegal activities on business premises to customer safety hazards or insufficient security. A mystery shopper can spend a lot of time in a shop and pick up on activities that are going on and identify potential hazards that could lead to lawsuits. When people don’t know they are being watched, they tend to do things they wouldn’t usually. This is where the mystery shopper comes in.

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4. Enlighten Employers

Any employer wants to know what the experience is like from the customer perspective. Mystery shoppers can give them this information. Employers can ask mystery shoppers all the questions they really want answers to about their store. This can lead to solving of problems, better decision-making, improved sales, and more efficient processes.

5. Uncover Illegal Activity

Mystery shoppers can be sent in to take note of what employees are doing. If an employer suspects that one of his employees may be stealing from the store or taking part in other activities that are illegal or against the code of conduct, a mystery shopper can get the evidence. It happens that employers suspect something but they cannot fire a person without proof. Mystery shoppers can help prove that certain activities are taking place or not.

Mystery shoppers can be your business’ own private investigators. They are a great tool to make use of to get insight into the workings of your staff and the processes that you have implemented. There is no better way to get an honest review and feedback from someone that will help you improve your business and profits.