Top 6 Benefits of Inventory Management Software

What a surprise! A blog for an inventory management software company comes out as pro inventory management software. But just because we’re personally biased doesn’t mean we’re wrong — after all, we wouldn’t have gotten into this business unless ecommerce software was actually useful.

inventory management

If you’re still on the fence about using a software or you’re researching its merits before signing up, we wanted to outline all the benefits of inventory management software in one place. Here’s what you have to gain from using software like ecomdash.

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More Free Time (and Less Boredom)

The goal of automation is to save you time. Managing a multichannel e-commerce business is a mixed bag, requiring both dedicated strategic thought as well as menial “busy work.” Automation software takes care of the latter so you have more free time for the former.

From syncing inventory from all your warehouses, updating stock levels on all your sales channels, or routing sales orders directly to the dropshipper or manufacturer, automation software takes care of the simple tasks so you don’t have to worry about them. Not only does it save time, but it spares you the tedium of boring, repetitive tasks.

Automatically Update Stock Levels

More and more, multichannel selling is becoming essential to eCommerce success. New marketplaces emerge every day and attract new niches, so it’s increasingly difficult to find all your target customers in the same place. The solution is to branch out and sell on multiple channels, but that means more work to maintain each channel.

One of the biggest threats multichannel sellers face is keeping all the stock levels up-to-date. Every time a sale is made, you have to update that product’s stock levels on each channel. For every sale.

That’s the exact kind of busy work we were talking about above — the kind that can be solved through automation. Whenever a sale is made, we’ll automatically update the stock levels on all your product pages on all your channels. This ensures you never lose customers or suffer bad reviews because of overselling. Syncs are done in near real-time, too — other inventory management software syncs by the hour, meaning you could still oversell if you have a short hot streak.

Manage Inventory for Different Warehouses

Just like ecommerce software unites all your different sales channels, it also unites all your warehouses. Ecomdash can tell you how many items of each product you have in each of your warehouses, right down to the aisle and bin locations. This benefit is particularly useful in avoiding shortages and the dreaded “Out of Stock” message, especially if you set a restock alert to trigger when your inventory reaches a specified number.

That goes beyond just warehouses, too — we also connect to your Amazon FBA account, dropshipping supplier, or 3PL. You can also prioritize which location to draw certain products from, or effortlessly reroute sales orders from one location to another.

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Single Dashboard for Multiple Sales Channels

Sometimes the hardest part of multichannel selling is just staying organized. You’re essentially running multiple stores at the same time, and even when no particular trouble arises, maintaining the status quo on each channel is trouble enough.

Inventory management software eases the burden by syncing all your channels to a single, centralized dashboard. You’re able to conduct all your business at one location — no more signing into different accounts or going back and forth between different tabs. This is a huge advantage for relieving stress and making your job easier, to say nothing of how much time you save by streamlining your managerial tasks.

Edit Listings Only Once

We’ve spoken a lot about how inventory management software spares you from the more doldrum tasks of running an online store. And of all the tedious busywork tasks, few are worse than the data entry of updating product listings on different sales channels.

If you don’t use e-commerce software, you have to do this manually — go to each product page on each channel and make the same changes, over and over again. This kind of tedium deters changing product listings at all, which can seriously harm your business. Updating pages is a quick way to improve your SEO, among other advantages.

Using inventory management software, though, you only have to update the price of a listing once before it applies to all your channels. Ecomdash allows you to edit a master price, which in turn automatically updates the live product listings on all your channels. That makes it both convenient and time-efficient to update your listings according to the latest trends or changes in shopper preferences.

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Advanced Inventory Management Made Easy

Aside from making regular tasks easier, inventory management software also gives online vendors the opportunity to use advanced techniques they wouldn’t otherwise be able to do. Some of our advanced features include:

Bundles, kits, and multipacks. Inventory management is hard enough when you sell one product at a time, but what about packs? Software like ours lets you easily account for the sales of bundles, kits, and multipacks, such as 2-for-1s and specially curated collections. This opens the door for new sales strategies and creative ways to unload unwanted inventory.

Craft components. If you’re selling homemade crafts or artisanal goods, the levels of your final products aren’t as important as the levels of supplies and ingredients. Ecomdash treats product components with the same regard as finished products, giving you accurate and up-to-date status on what’s available and when you need to reorder. You can also track the total costs of goods sold, helping you optimize your prices for maximum profit.

Analytics reports. We offer over 40 different business health reports, based on your brand’s overall performance. You’re able to track sales trends, accurately forecast inventory needs, and make informed decisions on which products to add or remove.

If you ever feel overwhelmed by all the features, you can also use our unlimited customer support — phone, email, or live chat, whichever you prefer.

Is Inventory Management Software Worth It? See For Yourself!

We could talk all day about the benefits of inventory management software and what it can do for your e-commerce business, but the best way to convince you is to just show you. Try ecomdash for free with our 15-day trial, where you can explore all the features at your own pace and see firsthand what it’s capable of. No credit card required!

How long does it take to learn Microsoft office

Microsoft Office applications are collectively used in various trades and professions. There are various functions, menus, and options in Microsoft Office applications that are used to create documents, presentations, spreadsheets and daily official and personal works.

Microsoft office

To become proficient in Microsoft Office you have to learn the following applications/works that are mostly used.

  • Microsoft Word – You have to learn to create and edit professional-looking documents for various works.
  • Microsoft Excel – You have to learn to perform various data calculations, analysis, visualization so that data can help to make decisions.
  • Microsoft PowerPoint – You have to learn to create and set up presentations to showcase data and information through animations, videos, images, text, and speech.
  • Microsoft OneNote: In OneNote, you have to learn to collect, store and manage data and information.
  • Microsoft Publisher: If your current work or you think in future you have to create newsletter, flyers, brochures, invitations cards, posters, then you can learn publisher. Even you can do this work also in Word but publisher application is specifically designed for these things.
  • Microsoft Access: It another data management application similar to excel. But this is mostly used for data reporting where excel is more used to perform mathematical calculations and visualizations.

Other than learning these applications there are also Microsoft outlook, SharePoint apps that also help to learn.

So not only you have to learn to use various Microsoft Office applications but you also have to learn the following things that are very useful such as:

  1. Collaboration with other team members/students/teachers.
  2. You have to learn to store data directly to one drive.
  3. You have to learn to share data securely with other people.
  4. Synchronization of files and documents in mobile/computer/tablet.
  5. Online use of Microsoft Office

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The above are the things that are important to learn if you want to become an expert in Microsoft office. Now let’s understand, how much time it will take to learn Microsoft Office:

So, the time depends on how you learn and how many skills you learn related to Microsoft office. Now the process of learning Microsoft office is the following:

  1. You learn one topic in 30 minutes – Such as you learned about how to insert header and footer.
  2. Now you repeated those options and learned about the uses of header and footer. It will take min. 30 minutes to understand.
  3. After this, you practiced it through exercise. For example, you created/designed/written the first lesson of the book in Microsoft Word. It will take min. 30 minutes.

Now to become proficient in setting header and footer in word, excel, PowerPoint, it will take min. 2 hours for the beginner to learn. Not only that the next day or day after tomorrow they have to repeat that practice.

Now think if to become a master in one thing it will take 2 hours then think there are 1000+ functions and options and how much time they will take to learn.

In IT the expertise is not defined how much time something takes to learn. It is defined how effectively/accurately and faster you’re able to do one thing. But to do things effectively, accurately and faster than it was the results of practice, experience, skills. And these things take time.

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So, the time that will take to learn Microsoft Office is: 

3 Hours Per Day, 6 Months to be Intermediate in Microsoft Office

3 Hours Per Day, 1 Year to be expert in Microsoft Office

3 Hours Per Day, 3 months to learn the basics Microsoft Office Skills

But honestly, the more /faster you learn, practice and gain experience the sooner you will be able to become expert and master in Microsoft Office. The master is who knows when to use which function and application to do the work effectively, faster and accurately. And master and expert in Microsoft Office not only able to do any kind of work in Microsoft office but they are also able to explain that.

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So I hope this article helped you to gain ideas about how to learn and how much time it will take to learn and become a master in Microsoft Office.

If you want to learn the uses of Microsoft Office then read this article: Uses of Microsoft Office Applications in Daily Life

If you’re looking to learn Microsoft office then following articles will be helpful for you:

Top 25 Social Media Fails-The Worst Offenses on the Internet

Social Media Fails why do corporate social media fail to happen so often? Unfortunately, all it takes is a slight oversight in the advertising department. Either the team is too lazy to care, or they don’t understand the social climate. Sometimes businesses are just trying to be hip, but they fail to do their research. Other times, employees aren’t Internet savvy, so domains get lost, or tweets get misinterpreted. However it occurs, it’s quite comical to see the effects and how companies try to clean up their mess.

25 Times Businesses Dropped the Ball on Social Media [Stats & Facts]

Corporations definitely aren’t immune to making Internet blunders. Even the big names sometimes mess up, and it leaves fans very upset. Check out this list of top 25 business social media fails in 2020. From meme misuse to insensitive jokes, these are the worst of the worst.

1. Adidas’ Boston Marathon Email

Social Media Fails

The 2013 Boston Marathon went down in history due to the terrorist offense that happened during the race. Two homemade bombs detonated and killed 3 persons. Dozens more suffered injuries, and 16 of those victims lost limbs. Adidas seemed to have forgotten about all of that because they sent an insensitive email to runners after the event. The email’s subject title read: “Congrats, you survived the Boston Marathon.”

2. SnapChat’s “Would You Rather” About Rihanna

SnapChat is a social platform that’s always on the up and up. However, they received backlash after posting a quiz about Rihanna. A well-known game, “Would You Rather” typically includes outrageous tasks or situations. SnapChat made the mistake of creating a question based on the Rihanna – Chris Brown feud. The question: “Would you rather slap Rihanna or punch Chris Brown?”

3. Cinnabon Banks on Carrie Fisher’s Death

The loss of Star Wars actress Carrie Fisher was devastating. Cinnabon seemed to see Fisher as a cash cow even after death. They posted an ad of the actress as Princess Leia with cinnamon buns as her signature hairstyle. This was all an attempt to sell more product, and it was absolutely insensitive to Fisher’s life and death. Star Wars fans definitely didn’t like that.

4. US Airways’ NSFW Response to a Tweet

US Airways often responds to customer complaints and questions through Twitter. Well, one day they spiced things up – seriously. While replying to a client who complained about a delayed flight, the airline posted an illustration. An X-rated image. How this NSFW pic got through privacy settings, the world may never know.

5. Dove: Transformation in Reverse

A misstep from Dove is always a grave disappointment. The brand has done so much to empower women and break beauty norms. One of their campaigns completely “missed the mark,” as they later said. The ad starts with a Black woman wearing a brown T-shirt. She takes off her shirt to reveal a white woman in a white tee. People quickly recognized the advertisement as racially charged, and complaints followed. Dove apologized and recognized their error, but it was still a major blow.

6. Starbucks’ Racy New Espresso

This coffee giant is known for pushing the envelope, but people weren’t ready for their new espresso. Starbucks introduced the blonde drink with flirty ads and suggestive language. Some examples were “Blondes have more fun,” and “Tall, blonde, and gorgeous.” It also left customers ordering “tall blondes.” Surely barista didn’t like this awkward new ordering style!

7. Twitter’s CFO Wasn’t Too Savvy

Social Media Fails7

One would expect the CFO of a social media platform to have great online etiquette. Unfortunately, former head Anthony Noto screwed up. He accidentally tweeted out a direct message to the whole world. It was about a possible merger, although privacy details, like the company in question, wasn’t revealed. Could this be why Noto’s no longer around?

8. Nothing Like A Short Stack of Tampons

A couple of years ago, IHOP decided to become IHOB: International House of Burgers. However, the combination of their font and the new “b” wasn’t the best choice. It had lots of ladies laughing. The “OB” of IHOB looked similar to the brand image for o.b. Tampons.

9. T-Mobile Austria Has A Hard Time Clearing Things Up

T-Mobile Austria responded to a customer tweet about passwords that shook things up. The client asked if the company stores passwords in clear text. The response they got didn’t help anyone and raised privacy questions. The company replied with “Yes,” and “I really do not get why this is a problem.” People were quick to freak out on the cell phone giant for its lack of password security.

10. False Alarm, Queen Elizabeth

The queen may be in her 90’s, but she’s still alive and kicking. Back in 2015, BBC’s Ahmen Khawaja tweeted that “Queen Elizabeth has died.” Was this a preemptive death alert following the monarch’s hospital visit? Did Khawaja want to be the first to tweet it out? Regardless, it was in poor taste and got her in trouble with the BBC.

11. Winter Olympics In … P.F. Chang’s?

A Chicago news station was covering a story about the Winter Olympics in South Korea. Unfortunately, someone at the studio confused Pyeongchang with P.F. Chang’s. The restaurant chain played along, posting their own humorous tweet. Viewers mocked the channel with all sorts of Chinese food puns. An Olympics at P.F. Chang’s would certainly be the best Games ever.

12. Razer Steps Over the Line

Back in 2016, Apple was promoting its new MacBook Pro. One disappointing feature was the lack of an SD card slot. Razer shot back with a cheeky tweet that didn’t help its marketing at all. “You call yourself Pro? S my D.” The message was quickly greeted with negative responses, and Razer removed it after a day.

13. Happy 4th of July, Liberia

YouTube Creators Twitter requires a new manager. For July 4th, 2018, they posted a holiday message for fellow Americans. It was a nice sentiment, but they shared the wrong flag emoji. Theirs had red and white stripes with one star. That’s Liberia’s flag, not the United States of America’s.

14. What’s More Feminine Than A Washing Machine?

German appliance manufacturer made a major faux pas on International Women’s Day. They tweeted, “May all women … embrace what makes them unique!” So, what was up with the four white ladies smiling next to a washing machine? The marketing was neither unique nor celebratory of women. Miele seems to be in the 1950s, not 2020.

15. Lockheed Martin’s World Photo Day Flop

Lockheed Martin, which sells guns, wanted customers to participate in World Photo Day. So, they asked them to share a picture of one of their products. Users on Twitter were up in arms and shared images of various acts of violence using firearms. Not exactly the picture the brand was looking for.

16. Uber’s Poor Timing

Social Media Fails16

Following President Trump’s travel ban on Muslim-majority countries, there was a ton of backlash. Taxi drivers in New York City expressed their anger by refusing to provide service at JFK airport. At the same time, Uber ran an ad campaign for its rides. Customers were extremely angry at the company’s poor timing.

17. Betsy DeVos vs. W.E.B. Du Bois

This snafu took place in the same week that Trump named Betsy DeVos the new Education Secretary. The Department of Education posted a tweet to honor civil rights activist and historian W.E.B. Du Bois. However, they misspelled his last name as “DeBois.” It sparked public outrage and was seen as a complete fail that put a sour taste in everyone’s mouth.

18. A Yanny/Laurel Joke Taken Too Far

The U.S. Air Force hopped on the Yanny/Laurel train back in 2018. There wasn’t anything funny about their tweet though. They joked about how the Taliban forces would have rather heard Yanny or Laurel than the Air Force’s drone attack. The jab made light of death and was in poor taste.

19. IHOP’s Anti-Hillary Clinton Retweet

The pancake restaurant chain knows best when it comes to messing up online. They retweeted a tweet that wished good morning to all except those who dispute that Clinton ran a garbage campaign. Community on Twitter wasted no time calling IHOP out. The corporation responded by saying that they were hacked.

20. Amazon CEO Feels the Heat on Earth Day

After Jeff Bezos wished everyone a Happy Earth Day and tweeted about dog sledding, the Twitterverse lost it. They roasted Bezos online, pointing out that Amazon staff struggle in oppressive working conditions. Comedienne Sarah Silverman even pointed out that many Amazon workers depend on food stamps, so they surely weren’t taking off for Earth Day. Bezos felt the heat for that one.

Social Media Fails21

21. McDonald’s Incomplete Black Friday Tweet

McDonald’s Twitter was set to post a message about Black Friday deals. Instead, the tweet read: “Black Friday ***need copy and link****. It looks like the placeholder went out rather than the actual tweet. Oddly enough, the error attracted more attention than the correct tweet probably would have gotten in the first place. Maybe it was for the best!

22. Dolce & Gabbana Loses Its Chinese Audience

The fashion brand released an ad showing a Chinese woman trying to eat Italian food with chopsticks. It sparked media backlash, and several stores dropped Dolce & Gabbana. They had to cancel their Shanghai show and explained that they had “much to learn.” Maybe they’ll have better luck in 2020.

23. Wendy’s Sends the Wrong Message

Wendy’s Twitter is cheeky and has some savage responses. Yet when they posted an image of Pepe the Frog, it was over. The meme has evolved to represent white supremacy, so its inclusion on Wendy’s Twitter sparked outrage. The restaurant chain blamed it on their community manager’s lack of digital awareness.

24. Chick-Fil-A Could Use A Geography Lesson

A fan tweeted at the restaurant asking for a store in the North Pole, Alaska. Yes, that town does really exist. Chick-Fil-A responded by saying that they weren’t currently expanding beyond North America. It’s too bad Alaska is in North America.

25. The New York Times Unique View on Millennials

The nationally-recognized newspaper had a major error in its online article about President Trump’s trade claims. The paper’s editor used a joke browser extension called “Millennials to Snake People”. The result was a digital article that referred to young people as serpents. Readers were downright perplexed while reading this.

Social Media Fails: The Worst Common Offenders

While everyone messes up online from time to time, some mistakes are hard to forget. This is a list of the worst offenders when it comes to funny social media fails. Businesses and individuals alike should try to avoid these at all costs.

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1. Posting Off-Brand Content

Lots of companies use Paper.li to add engaging digital content for their audience. Nonetherless, a simple slip-up can lead to off-brand illustrations and stories. For TheOrganicView, this was a crucial mistake. Instead of reposting helpful nutrition news, they shared a story about a child molester.

2. An Egocentric Point of View

SJ Magazine really messed up when they shared news about their Women’s Empowerment Series. The theme was Women in Business: A Man’s Point of View. Viewers were quick to point out that there was nothing empowering about that. The magazine ended up canceling the series after receiving tons of emails about it.

3. Platforms Aren’t Created Equal

Even those who aren’t social media experts know that each platform works differently. Therefore, people can’t post the exact same format on each channel. When a business takes their Facebook content and puts it on Twitter, it just screams laziness.

4. A Warning About Facebook Ads

It’s important to understand the product that’s being promoted. When Corvette used Facebook Ads to build hype around their new model, it was a disaster. The ad stated that the car was just $15,000. The car brand could’ve found itself selling Corvettes at a $45,000 discount.

5. Gotta Keep Up With Schedules

The Internet can be a tough place. If a brand doesn’t meet its upload schedule, viewers can get nasty. McDonald’s dropped the ball when its placeholder text was accidentally tweeted publicly. It’s so important to keep ahead of those posting schedules.

6. Ad Compliance and Trustworthiness

When companies don’t stick to ad compliance, they end up with lots of angry customers. Chevrolet advertised their Corvette at a special price but failed to explain the terms and conditions. They could have included a link instead to increase click-through rates.

7. Poor Copy

Everyone has seen Facebook posts or tweets that lack any kind of common sense. If writing is not a strong suit, then hire someone to write the content. Otherwise, it makes a business look foolish, and it can hurt their sales.

8. Misrepresentation is the Worst

Failing to portray different groups in the proper light spells misfortune for everyone. When Miele posted for International Women’s Day, they showed an image that undermined the 1950’s housewife stereotype. It was neither empowering nor classy. In fact, they deleted it.

9. Focus on a Featured Image

Sometimes businesses fail to set up a featured image for their articles. Or, they don’t pay attention to what that picture is. Then, when they share it online, it distracts from the content of the piece. A brand did this with a news story, but the featured pic was the writer.

10. Double Check, Then Triple Check

Automobile sales trainer Alan Ram died tragically in a plane crash. He had a regular segment on a show that featured a fiery backdrop. An unfortunate coincidence, but CBT News should have changed the background before showing his picture while explaining his death.

Sometimes brands post broken links, or their jokes miss the mark. But, there are 5 major mistakes: the early release, the false reward, the hack, the inappropriate opinion, and the insensitive statement. Never post content that misrepresents the business, points fun at serious issues, or offers fake promises. Recovering can take time, but the first step is apologizing. Try to humanize the brand and be upfront and honest. Then, stick to safe content to rebuild trust. Consumers are more likely to respond positively to companies that opt for transparency. It sure doesn’t help businesses to cover up their errors.

How to Add Route Planning to Your App

Route Planning  Plenty of the apps that we use today are location-aware. Instagram shows us where photos were taken, OpenTable offers nearby restaurants, Eventbrite invites you to gigs in your city. These features get users to stay longer in these apps, boosting their engagement rates.

But users still have to open another app to plan their routes to destinations. So here’s a way to take your engagement rates to another level — bring route planning to your web or mobile application. By adding route planning, you’ll also increase user loyalty and improve the user experience, which can eventually turn into more revenue for your company.

Route Planning

What apps can benefit from route planning?

There are plenty of industries that can benefit from route planning. We’ll skip navigation apps with GPS trackers and mapping where the route planning technology is vital. Instead, we’ll focus on apps whose functionality can be complemented by embedding route planning.

Travel apps

By allowing your users to plan tours and build travel routes right within your app, you can make their travel experience more engaging. All Trails, a website and an app for hiking and mountaineering, allows you to build routes of your walking tours, save them, share them, and view routes created by other users.

Event apps

Say a user is going to a concert in another city or country. In this case, he or she might want to eat somewhere or even stay for the night. For situations like this, you can let users plan routes from events to nearby coffee shops or hotels, or even to city sites and exclusive exhibitions. Festicket, a major event platform, already offers a similar option — Festicket Trips. But users can’t edit these packages and routes. You could take it further and offer festival tours with customizable routes.

Transportation apps

For logistics, delivery, and taxi companies, road trip planning is essential, especially when it comes to crowdsourced delivery of multiple parcels and food orders or picking up multiple passengers. At Yalantis, we’ve already developed a number of solutions for logistics and delivery companies with a focus on flawless route planning. Check out the transportation management system we built for one of our clients. Also, see our case studies about Brilliant Move and another delivery platform if you want to learn more about the logistics tracking software, delivery management software, dispatching software, fleet management systems, and transport monitoring systems we’ve built.

Real estate apps

Touring places to rent or buy can be daunting: people have to see lots of properties that can be far away from each other. Route building and route scheduling can truly simplify their lives. The same applies to agents who help tenants and homebuyers find properties, so agents will surely appreciate a tool for route planning too.

Zillow and Zumper, top American real estate apps, allow users to schedule live tours, but neither allows users and agents to create live tour routes. If you want more ideas on real estate app development, read our recent post on how to uberize the real estate industry.

Healthcare apps

Nurses and doctors often have to perform routine examinations at patients’ apartments or houses.You can help doctors and nurses organize their examination trips in your healthcare app.

Parking apps

For people driving to other cities and countries, planning a route to parking can be a great time and money saver. You can get inspired by parking apps like Parke, which allows users to find nearby parking spots and complements that functionality with customizable routes.

If your app is for one of the industries mentioned above — or if you’re planning to enter these industries with a top-notch user-friendly app — we’ve got great news! Below, we describe in detail what exactly an app should offer to let users build customizable routes.

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What route planning should offer to users

Route planning relies heavily on maps and the data they supply on distance, speed, traffic jams, alternative routes, travel times, and locations. To calculate routes in your app, you can use the Directions API by Google. But routes are only one piece of the puzzle.

Helping users prioritize stops

When choosing places to go, users may be more interested in some destinations than others. For instance, say a tenant is selecting an apartment to rent. They may like some alternatives more than others and want to visit them first. In this case, you can let users rate places to make sure they manage to visit their top choices. Users may also rely on ratings left by others to help them plan their routes.

To add ratings to your app, you can choose from a number of APIs like sellytics, Boltron, and ReviewPro. There are even industry-specific APIs that supply rating features, like Amadeus Hotel Ratings for travel apps and the Uber Driver API for taxi businesses. But judging from our experience, businesses prefer creating custom rating services for their apps to drive more flexibility and to easily maintain this functionality.

Helping users plan their time

Once users have prioritized a list of places to visit,they need to decide when to visit them and how much time to spend at each one. Therefore, users need an integrated calendar for planning. To add a calendar to your app, you can use the Google Calendar API or the Outlook Calendar REST API as well as plenty of other alternatives. Take a look at our guide on how to implement a calendar in your app for more information on this topic.

Helping users sync their tour plans

Users may not be alone when going on a planned route: tenants and homebuyers may need to agree on tours with agents, event-goers may travel with their friends or family, and doctors can visit patients along with nurses. That’s why users need a feature to share and approve their routes with others. From our experience, most app developers choose Google’s mobile and web Sharing APIs, though there are other solutions by Alligator.io and SalesForce.

In addition to a sharing feature, there should be a notification and approval mechanism to agree on routes. Say a tenant has built an itinerary for a live tour and sent it to their agent. In this case, you’ll need to send the agent a push notification about the itinerary and send a notification to the tenant to inform them whether the agent has approved the itinerary.

In case a user or agent is offline, you can consider sending an SMS instead of an in-app notification. For push notifications, there are various solutions, but the most popular among our clients is FireBase Cloud Messaging. And for SMS messages, there’s an API by Twilio.

One more way to sync tour plans is by implementing real-time chat in your app, where users can discuss routes. PubNub, Layer, Pusher, and plenty of other messaging services can help you implement this feature.

Helping users handle changes and risks

Even when everything is duly planned and prepared, there’s always a chance that something will go wrong. A tenant may have to change the route if it turns out an apartment is no longer available, a client may cancel a delivery, or a hotel may temporarily close because of a storm. That’s why you need to let users edit, cancel, and postpone their tours. There aren’t ready-made solutions for this, so you’ll need to create your own custom functionality. Here’s an example of how the Komoot app allows users to build and edit hiking and biking tours:

Route planning software

In case you’re not ready to invest your time and money in route planning development, there’s an alternative for you: using existing route planning software. Let’s have a look at some of the top players on the market.

HERE

HERE is the biggest player in the route planning market today. The Routing API by HERE provides a route optimization solution, allows you to calculate routes for multiple waypoints, edit routes, update past routes, and calculate a matrix of routes, taking into consideration various destinations and starting points. In addition, this SaaS solution supplies Public Transport TimeTable Routing and Traffic Enabled Routing in its premium package. As you can see, you can use the HERE Routing API for any industry that requires route planning.

Onfleet

This SaaS product is made for delivery management and last-mile delivery. Onfleet supplies companies with an API that can be integrated into online ordering and parcel delivery apps. In addition to route planning, you can use Onfleet to automate your delivery routines, manage your inventory, and get delivery reports.

YaCu

YaCu is another solution for routing and route optimization and focused on delivery management. It supplies delivery routine automation and offers extra services like delivery analytics and vehicle monitoring.

Route4Me

Route4Me is another route planner that provides its route planning API for free, but you’ll have to pay for extra services like in-app voice-guided navigation, scheduled customer notifications, delivery analytics, and a customer relationship management system. Route4Me is more customizable than other options and is used by businesses in the transportation, food delivery, healthcare, and construction industries.

Now that you know about route building SaaS tools, you may be wondering if you should use a SaaS product or build your route planning functionality from scratch. The answer depends on your budget and business goals. If you need to enrich your app’s functionality within a short period of time and with minimum upfront cost, SaaS will do. But no matter which SaaS option you choose, you’ll be tied to its tech stack and won’t be able to tailor the service to your needs. Also, you’ll have to pay a subscription fee for the service, so over time, you’ll spend quite a penny.

On the contrary, you can invest more time and money at the beginning and build the functionality you need from scratch. This will eventually bring you more flexibility for future app updates and allow you to add any new features you may come up with. And all of that without being limited to your SaaS provider’s services.

Implementing route planning in your app may seem quite a challenging task, as you’ll have to develop a sophisticated system for editing and sharing routes with scheduling, real-time chat, push notifications, a verification mechanism, and a support center. But the results will be an enhanced user experience and improved customer loyalty. Hopefully, this guide will help you achieve that!

How to Create an App Design That Works

App Design is essential to a project’s success. And designing an app involves more than one designer. If an entire team – including business owners – take an active part in the web and mobile application design process, there’s a better chance of creating a beautiful and useful product.

In our complete guide to a digital design that works, we’ll walk you through Yalantis’ approach to designing excellent products, providing helpful design tips and sharing our best practices accumulated over the years. So let’s ask some questions.

App Design

What is “design that works”?

Before we talk about how to make an app design that works, we need to know what a “working design” actually is. We all know there are two main design components for an app – the user interface (UI) and user experience (UX). What do these things have in common? The answer is the user. Design works when users are happy. It’s as simple as that.

A working design is not only a good-looking design. A working design is rather invisible. Ideally, users should instantly understand a web or mobile app’s user interface patterns and components to achieve their goals with minimum difficulty. An intuitive experience satisfies your users and keeps them coming back for more, which essentially means more profit for your business.

How can I create a UX design?

Creating an intuitive, attractive, and user-friendly design requires understanding your users – their pains, emotions, motivations, and desires. And here’s where UX designers usually rely on user-centric design tactics.

Made popular by the Stanford d.school, Harvard, and MIT, and successfully adopted by Apple, Google, Samsung, and General Electric, Design Thinking is a design approach that seeks to understand an end-user and redefine their problems to identify and develop the most optimal solution to them. At its heart, Design Thinking has a deep interest in developing empathy with the target user for whom the product is being developed.

There are five stages of Design Thinking according to d.school:

  1. Empathize – Learn about your customers
  2. Define – Construct a point of view based on customer needs and insights
  3. Ideate – Brainstorm many possible solutions
  4. Prototype – Create several prototypes of your solutions
  5. Test – Put your prototypes in front of users to get feedback

Design Thinking looks more like a circle than a straight path. The design team continuously uses the results of their work to review, question, and improve their initial assumptions and analyze possible implications of their solutions for users and the industry in general.

Much like the Design Thinking approach, User-Centered Design (or Human-Centered Design) is an iterative design technique aimed at developing solutions to problems by approaching all steps in the problem-solving process from a human perspective

There are four stages of user-centered design as proposed by the Interactive Design Foundation:

  1. Understand the context of use – Try to understand the context in which your users will use your product.
  2. Specify requirements – Identify and elicit users’ requirements.
  3. Design a solution – Develop possible solutions.
  4. Evaluate the solution – Evaluate your solution against your users’ context and requirements, checking how closely it matches users’ specific needs.

That’s not the end, however. Your team then can perform further iterations of these four phases and continue until the results are satisfactory.

Lean UX is one more effective approach that’s widely used among design and development companies. This technique, born out of Toyota’s manufacturing model, works in alignment with Agile development methods. It aims to reduce waste and increase value.

Essentially, Lean UX combines the solution-based approach of Design Thinking and Human-Centered Design with iterative Agile development methods, streamlining the design process. It boils down to a simple formula: think, make, check. By mixing a lean, Agile approach with human-centered design techniques, you can establish a product development process that’s not only user-centric but also highly efficient from a business perspective.

These approaches look pretty similar, don’t they? There are lots of other similar schemes and algorithms that have been created by designers all over the world. Essentially, they all teach us to ask the right questions to better understand our users, generate as many ideas as possible, and, by testing them, find an ideal solution that not only fits users’ needs but is sustainable and can survive in a competitive environment.

What is Yalantis’ approach to UX design?

All of the approaches we’ve mentioned complement each other. Any UX design process comes down to four basic steps – Think, Create, Test, and, surprisingly, Repeat.

1. Think – Find out users’ needs to make them happy

Here are your tasks for the Think stage:

  • Conduct UX research (qualitative and quantitative) to learn more about your target audience’s needs; analyze the market and competitors.
  • Elicit customers’ requirements. Working closely with business analysts, define your business requirements and prepare technical specifications.
  • Create personas and roles, or fictional characters that represent users of your product.

UX research helps app designers and developers better understand users’ behaviors, habits, and needs through different observational techniques and surveys, interviewing users, and watching how they complete different tasks. A designer’s job is to dig deep into the problem and brainstorm solutions to provide value for users.

Basically, UX research consists of two parts: gathering data and synthesizing it to improve your app’s usability.

Read also: Know About App Store Optimization (ASO)

Research techniques may include interviews with customers and stakeholders, study reviews, and interviews with subject matter experts. As a result of UX research, designers get buyer personas, user stories, use cases, and user flows, on the basis of which you can build your app’s information architecture.

In outsourcing companies like Yalantis, UX research can consist of the following steps:

  • Study all project materials, whether there’s a bare business idea or a detailed specification with desired functionality, mind maps, users roles, and so on.
  • Conduct a range of interviews with the client to elicit their requirements.
  • Conduct market analysis. Study close competitors and reviews of their products, interview subject matter experts, and, sometimes, observe users.
  • Prepare a presentation for the client that may include mind maps, moodboards, references, and a couple of initial app concepts.

In both product companies and outsourcing companies, after conducting initial UX research, the focus gradually shifts to usability and the users’ mood. Researchers can conduct usability tests, or A/B tests, as well as feedback sessions with users. Typically, developers test assumptions that will improve the design.

If you’re curious to find out more about our design approach and discover the cost of our design services, ask all of your questions at hello@yalantis.com

2. Create – Develop possible solutions based on users’ requirements

Once you’ve gathered the information you need, you can start creating first sketches. To do so, you need to start with drafting your information architecture and navigation:

  • Create a mind map (site map) of your application that describes the app’s structure and logic.
  • Create wireframes with textual content.

The first step is creating low-fidelity wireframes, which help an outsourcing firm clearly communicate visual ideas to their clients. Low-fidelity wireframes also help a business analyst understand the project and create detailed requirements.

Next, create detailed wireframes. To do so, you can use vector graphics editors such as Sketch, Figma, or Adobe Illustrator. These design tools also let you write comments for every screen to display the logic in as much detail as possible.

After the wireframes are ready, you can start building a prototype:

  • Export all of your screens as separate images
  • Use InVision (or any other tool you prefer) to build an interactive prototype with transitions
  • Share your prototype
  • Test your prototype (see the Test section below for details)

After your prototype has been tested and approved, start working on your visual design:

  • Find an appropriate visual style using information from your research (design brief, moodboards, references)
  • Don’t forget about developers: use Zeplin or Avocode for sharing specifications and assets

3. Test – Put your prototypes in front of users to get feedback

The earlier you start testing, the better. Once you have text wireframes, you can test them on real users. You should take advantage of every possible opportunity to get feedback. Ask your colleagues, parents, friends, and random people in your office building to accomplish certain tasks using your prototype. Then watch what happens.

App Design3

Share your interactive prototype with everybody you know, including your stakeholders. Let them test it as well. Continue collecting feedback even when you feel like everything is perfect. After your product is released, start tracking analytics and collecting user feedback.

Finally, go all the way back to the beginning: gather information, think, and create a list of changes. Continue with wireframes, testing, design, testing, release, testing, and gathering information.

4. Repeat – Iterate until you get satisfactory results

How many iterations do you need to create an app design that truly works? All of them! There’s no such thing as a “final” design. There will always be something in your product that can be improved. Consider your product a living creature: it should develop and evolve, getting better with each generation. Don’t try to fix all your problems at once. Develop a minimum viable product first and try to fix major issues in the early version. Then test every change you make as soon as possible.

Your MVP product should have enough features to allow you to ship the product to its first users. Use it to test your assumptions, understand your users, and define the functionality that brings them real value

Know About App Store Optimization (ASO)

App Store In this tech-savvy world, smartphone users are growing at a rapid pace. People using the smartphone love to search various kinds of smooth-running apps on the app store which helps them in making their life easy and but obvious for giving a big smile to their faces too. This demands much of creativity and best functioning to be added in the development of mobile apps by mobile app development companies.

App Store

So, are you looking forward to the best source by which your app will get marketed to a lot of extents and get the huge clicks on the download button on the app store? This, in turn, will also help you to generate good sales leads and increase the revenues.

All you need to know about ASO:

In today’s date, the mobile app must rank higher in the app store for getting your app noticed for smartphone users. The trending technique for this is app store optimization (ASO)  which is a sure-shot way to increase higher revenues for the mobile app development company boston in this era of the tech-savvy world. You need to know more about the target niche who will be making use of mobile apps. The main purpose of the mobile app is to draw decent traffic to your app’s page among smartphone users around the globe. For this, you must include the quality-oriented keywords which the smartphone users search on the app store before downloading the apps from the app store.

What makes ASO pre-eminent in improving app ranking on the app store?

There are multifarious mobile apps on the leading operating system and this calls for investing in the app store optimization for getting good ranks on the app store for your thrilling and smooth functioning mobile app that will help your users in different ways in their life.

Read More:-Top Unique Website Development Ideas

How to enhance your App Store Optimization (ASO)?

So, here are the best ways by which you can enhance your ASO for getting your app discovered on the app stores.

#1 Title of the app:

You must include the top-rating keyword in the title of your app for increasing the search engine ranking of your app on the app store. So always opt for the app name with quality-oriented keyword inclusion.

#2 Keywords in the app:

Well, it takes time to track your keywords on the app store. You must make good analysis for the keywords in your app and make use of the best keywords and then you can also get the updates from the competitors regarding the performance of app on the app store. There are various inbound marketing strategies for mobile apps to be followed for increasing the awareness of your mobile app on the app store.

#3 Number of downloads:

Improving your ASO technique will definitely help in increasing the number of downloads for your app on the app store. You are required to promote, advertise and market your app for increasing the awareness of your mobile app on the app store. Yet another way of increasing the number of downloads is by ratings and reviews of your app on the app store which will draw the ap users for downloading your mobile app and use on the smartphone screen.

#4 Ratings and reviews of the app:

The sure-shot way of enhancing the ASO is by the ratings and reviews of your app because the app with high ratings and reviews by the app users gets a higher rank on the app store. You can ask your happy customers to leave their positive reviews about the app on the app store for using the app.

App Store Optimization takes time to get improved:

For ASO to function in the best way, the developers are required to keep a close watch on their app ratings, reviews, and rankings on the app store. There are various apps which gets published daily on the app stores. You must opt for the best ratings and reviews and the number of downloads to increase and this will lead to improving your ASO to a lot of extent. You also need to test your keywords as to how well the keywords of your app are performing and accordingly make your strategy for enhancing and improvising your ASO. This will drive decent traffic of the app on the app store.

Wrapping Up:

So, do you also look forward to get the feature-rich app developed for the Android and ios smartphone users which will help the smartphone users to make their life easy? If yes then all you need to do is to contact us and we will assist you in getting the mobile app developed and proper ASO will help you in getting good ranking of your apps on the search engines. Making god investment in ASO technique will help you in driving massive traffic to your mobile app. This will help you to get good number of downloads of your app from the app store buy the users of trendy smartphone.

Top Unique Website Development Ideas

Web development broadly refers to the tasks associated with developing websites for hosting via intranet or internet. The web development process includes web design, web content development, client-side/server-side scripting and network security configuration, among other tasks.

Website Development

If you wanna develop own business website you can see there.

A. Online Affiliate Websites

Affiliate business marketing is a commitment based marketing scheme in which a person is paid for advertising and/or trading the products/services of another company. so don’t worry, You can develop a website with share reviews, and suggestions about products on other websites also with provide a link to the product page on another website and get paid for each resolution you make for the e-commerce marketplace.

B. Develop a Fashion Brand

Another great idea for an online business development. That is you can build your own personal fashion brands with a fashion brand website development, and publish the brand products online through the website.

C. Domain Buying and Selling

You can develop a website with domain purchasing and sell then the user can start a business with help of website development.

D. Stock Development

If you have any matter and existence in stock and forex business trading, that you can get good money by beginning the service by your own website.

E. Advertisement Business

Google ads, Facebook ads, and many other advertising platform programs are just delivering for businesses like you to examine the earning possibilities.

F. Online Marketing

That is not a new marketing or business idea but it is also not historic. If you have good skills, you can start your own online business marketing business with a simplistic website idea.

G. App Development

All the gadgets, Smart phones are hither to stay, so are the mobile apps. You can earn good money by the marketing of your app developing skills through a website.

H. Develop A Company Website

If you have an own company which are based on any other work based on shopping, teaching, training institute then you can develop or create a company website for information purpose and query purpose.

I. Wedding Website Development

the wedding business is amazing thought for a present time that develops your business instantly. All the possibilities feature like decoration, customized photos and sweet wedding moments, arrangement and much more you can update your wedding website for business leadership.

Educational Websites Development

It is great thought about the education class provide an online platform which is possible with help of online class or school website development. So you can easily develop for your educational purposes.

Websites Development

A. Drawing and Painting Website

According to generation every child increase ownself in the technology field and do every work on online so you can develop a drawing and art website. that is a benefit for kids class (prep-5) student use easily.

B. Money Earning and Saving

At present time every youth want to earn money and save money along with studying in college. So, it is possible with an online earning platform which provides online money earning resources with smart money saving.

C. Tuition Help

The online tutor searching and academic problem question with a solution is the best business which you can develop or maintain online with a simple website development or support teams. Also, it is the best business development which increases your website marketing value.

D. Learning Language

Every person needs to improve own skills in a various language which are based on numerous country-based but no one learns more extra due to sources that you can develop a website for language based and make a successful business.

E-commerce website/Business ideas

At present time an online e-commerce platform is now easier to develop online business because every platform or source are connected with online platform Whether it is in educational, hospitality, cooking, shopping etc. so is there we provide you some ideas for online e-commerce website business ideas.

Websites Development2

A. Handmade Products

Some countries like handmade products to home decor and wear the handmade dress but due to some issues, builder not to publish products online.So, You can create a website to sell these type of builder products like handmade wooden artwork, handmade color fabric design, curtain or other art things such as drawings, kites, painting and many more.

B. Fashion Rent Business

The youth generation and older people are using fashion accessories every time but due to fashion trading, every time its come in a new variety that’s why you can use a fashion on rent website that is provide the fashion thing on rent like dresses, shoes, wedding jewellery etc.

C. Second-Hand Products

You can develop a website to sell and buy second-hand products to start a business because sometimes a person needs an old item which is not found out easily.

Personal Services Websites

If you have a private business, you can publish your business online with the development of a personal business website. Are there some private business ideas here.

A. BabySitting

Everyone is busy with work whether office work or another work. That’s the reason they are not given the time to our baby and require a babysitter which are care of her children. so these facilities you can provide on the website to provide babysitter service.

B. Repairing Website

If your machine or any other products are bad and it is not working properly then you can look at the repaired website and correct it by treating it properly, which can be done through a repair website.

C. Cleaning Service

The service of cleaning is basic work for everyone but many more people need to cleaning service by servant or housekeeper. so these type of facility you can provide online which provides home cleaning, pool cleaning and many more.

D. Event Management

It is the best online website business which provides events management organize and tickets online because everyone like parties, events and much more in real life and it is take your events and business skill to a new level by developing these type of website online.

Learn More:- Industrial Internet of Things Trends to Dominate in 2020

Niche Websites

These websites are based on industry or niche such as medical, health, travel and many more. So, major thing is that you can create a website to your experience bases in a particular niche.

A. Price Comparison

The price comparison is the best idea to implement a website on globally so you can publish a website platform to compare and find the best value.

B. Job Search Website

You can develop an online platform for people to search for the job which provides best job offer for the user in specific areas.

C. Healthcare Consultant

You can develop a website that provides all healthcare facility like ambulance, medical consult, medical store, doctor address detail, hospital etc.

D. Online Question and Answer

Create or develop a website platform which provides you instantly question and answer result and also provide the best result to every field which user want.

Entertainment and Leisure Websites

In this industry, there are lots of options. If you have all thing to develop a website which manages a business successfully then you can easily develop an amazing website for business purpose.

Website Development3

A. Online Booking

Develop a website which provides much better services like online ticket booking, travel ticket booking, event ticket, sports match ticket and much more that provides much better services.

B. Sports Website

A complete website is based on a different platform which provides a complete result according to user wants. So, you can develop a sports website which provides update result of the matches.

C. Online Gaming

The game is the best source of time spending so simply you can develop an online gaming website that provides a free online game to play online apart from this you can fix your business in this field.

D. Gambling Website

Wow!! A Gambling is an amazing idea to develop a website that provides online gambling on a various platform which is globally available and the user can use gambling on your website. So, you also can develop or create a website in this field to fix our business on the online platform.

E. Movie Website

Lots of people have no time to go to watch a movie in the theater and many people are not familiar. So, many people go search online movie to watching and download but many time the online watching link and download link are not found easily that’s why you can develop a website that provides online movie download link included with online watching.

F. Online Book, Novel Website

Books, Novels are a great book that inspires people to improve themselves and motivate them. So, you can develop a website that provides a best books and novel for every user to inspiration, knowledge gain and motivates to do something special. Furthermore, these service is provide sharing books to each other.

Cryptocurrency

It’s a fully decentralized cryptocurrency at present time that is increased day by day and developing cryptocurrency in the global market. so you can develop these type of service in cryptocurrency.

A. Cryptocurrency Exchange Platform

The Cryptocurrency exchange platform is the best idea to develop a website in the global market that is the provide cryptocurrency exchange one to another for example (Bitcoin to litecoin, litecoin to etheruem, bitcoin to ripple etc) but it’s not easier but you can do it with your effort.

B. Wallet Service

The wallet service is based on cryptocurrency development that offers various services including digital money transfers, payments, and trading with help of cryptocurrency and digital money wallet.

Blogging Website Development

Blogging, article writing, content writing and many more thing which are based on creativity thoughts about the technical, non-technical and mind creativity based. Is here I have defined some sources of blogging.

A. Personal Blogging

You can start your personal blogging which is based on poetry, thoughts, traveling thought, adventure thought, etc. These type of facility is provided to user read your blog.

B. How to Blog

If you have good skills to writing, You can start blog writing, in particular, one entire field which gives you lots of knowledge about it and you can provide, the show of in front of people that what is this in the blog writing.

C. Review Website

It is the best source for online business which is reliable in cheapest investment. The work of this website is showing the review option, comparison website that is very beneficial for the user to compare website and products review for users.

D. Travel and Photography Blog

Traveling and photography everyone like in present time. So you can start adventure palace with smart photography which attracts the user to the website. So start these type of website which depends on photography and traveling.

E. Development Blog

The development field is best for engineers that can use every time if you write specific and unique thoughts that are beneficial for development user am damn sure it will give you lots of earning in this field.

F. Dancing Blog

A wonderful dance step blog writing increase your blog ranking globally the step of the dancing blog provides you dancing step, dancing ideas and many more feature in the blogs. Also, you can start a dancing blog website worldwide.

G. Healthcare Tips

Someone is disappointed with his health, someone is happy with his health, anyone wants to lose weight, so someone wants to make bodybuilding these type of fitness success mantra you can update your own health tips blog website for business purpose.

H. Wedding Blog

That is very sweet business to share your thought about the marriage or wedding. lots of people are getting confused in the marriage and they forget some decoration, some things, and much more so you can write the tip of marriage arrangement and decoration also much more which is beneficial for the blog reader.

I. Fashion Blog

Fashion blog gives the thoughts about the fashion wear that how to wear, how to look attractive in front of the someone, how to choose the perfect match. these all thing you can provide on the blog which you make on the website and can take lots of earn with help of these blogs.

J. Politics Blog Website

Those who have no work, they like to go to politics and search the internet on how to make a leader. you can update politics blog website and write the things such as politics, election, government, minister, government rules and more.

K. Food Making and Review

If you are fond of eating and you are aware of the taste and taste of every delicious meal, then you can develop or create a website to write a blog with the review of the food along with them, which can earn you a lot of money on every single review.

L. Relationship Suggestion

Looking at the growing trend of the present day, every one of the world’s looks seems to be more serious or reluctant to have their relationship. The kind of these type problem you can resolve on the blog. In this, you can write every suggestion about the relationship and provide the best ideas about the relationship, dating, long distance and more.

M. Spiritual Blogging Website

Motivational, inspiration, spiritual blogs are always giving the best thought to everyone and inspired everyone or the human world that always do good and get good. You can develop a website based on spiritual.

Subscription-Based Services

You can start a website which is based on similar services, Here are some websites ideas that implement the best business in the market.

A. Gym Fitness and Training

Lots of people need the source of fitness, gym exercise, and training but sometimes they not ingested get any right idea. So you can develop a fitness & Gym training website that provides the source of fitness exercise. This type of website business provides you the best earn option.

B. Online Magazine

If you have talent or skill to write magazine then you can write it with help of online subscription business also with the third-party magazine.

C. Video and Audio Subscription

With help of some hosting server, you can develop or start a website which is based on hosting and server that provides an audio and video subscription.

D. Online Flower / Gift Subscription.

You can develop an online fresh flower website distribution website. Who deliver people to receive and send flowers, gifts, cakes and many other items at specific times.

E. Shopping Subscription

Shopping subscription is the best business in the online market, which facilitates contributing information about the upcoming new products. In exactly the same way, you can create a new website that provides information about the availability or contribution of shopping products.

Closing Thought

These type of all ideas are based on the website development in various ideas which are beneficial for every start up business in the entire global market. You might consider all these ideas and guidelines as existing confinements, and in some ideas they are. You have to decide, however, to be independent when developing your website. SO use your creativity and develop the website

Industrial Internet of Things Trends to Dominate in 2020

The Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) goes beyond proof of concept and into wider adoption and deployment across a whole host of industries. A survey by IIoT giant Microsoft found that 85% of companies have at least one IIoT use case project. This number will increase, as 94% of respondents said they will implement IIoT strategies by 2021.

In fact, IDC predicts that spending on IoT technology will reach a trillion US dollars by 2022. The largest sectors investing in the emerging technology include discrete manufacturing, process manufacturing, transportation and utilities.

Industrial Internet

The growing applications and use cases of IIoT offer tremendous opportunities for global industries. As the technology matures this year, here are the three main trends that will reshape the industrial IoT landscape.

Efficiency IIoT trend: Wireless connectivity

IIoT refers to interconnected industrial assets and sensors over a wireless network. The lack of a catch-all networking solution remains the biggest challenge for its wide adoption. There are several recent innovations that are being implemented to drive the growth of viable IIoT cases and improve operational efficiency.

The adoption of 5G will revolutionize connectivity for IoT-enabled industries. This nascent connection technology is tailored for IoT’s connectivity needs and is expected to catalyze its productivity. Long-range low-power wide-area network (LPWAN) technologies like NB-IoT, LTE-M, LoRa and Sigfox are also driving innovation for IIoT connectivity. LPWANs for IoT sensors allow low powered devices to stream packets of data wirelessly but with a wider area.

What does it mean in figures? A new low-power LoRaWAN sensor may work during one year without battery replacement, compared to the current one to two months, and transmit data with up to 3 km coverage.

French-licensed LPWAN giant Sigfox services use cases for logistics and fleet management industries to improve traceability. Sigfox offers a much cheaper and more efficient alternative to cellular networks. Despite carrying only 12-byte payloads, Sigfox can sufficiently transmit GPS data in regular intervals – enough for fleet tracking and health info management. IEEE is also developing a new Wi-Fi standard, called 802.11ax, which uses both 2.4Ghz and 5.0Ghz wireless frequencies. This gives IoT devices better access points with boosted capacity and bandwidth speeds as well as improved energy efficiency over previous Wi-Fi standards. Among the rising amount of new protocols and solutions, how to decide which one of the innovations you should go with?

Read More:- 12 Simple Ways to Improve Your Credit Report in 2019

Business IIoT trend: Predictive Analytics

Data remains the backbone of IoT software and applications. IoT devices and end-points are growing in size and form. This enables businesses to find new ways of enhancing the interoperability of processes, people, assets, and data.

IIoT Data Analytics

While data analytics isn’t anything particularly new, MIT Sloan found that IIoT analytics will be vastly different from current data management paradigms. As counterintuitive as it may seem, data sharing among competitors will be the best way to make sense of this immense amount of information. To give you a peek into the future, Maryville University forecasts that by 2025 over 180 trillion gigabytes of data will be created worldwide every year. A large portion of this will be generated by IIoT-enabled industries.

Predictive maintenance

Similarly, remote data collection IoT platforms can wirelessly patch and update machinery in a timely manner through predictive maintenance. The intermittent access and quick response times this enables significantly decreases down time for machinery.

For example, deposits in heat exchangers are hard to detect and can clog the conduits. IoT devices that measure the temperature difference upstream and downstream, however, can issue warnings on anomalies that indicate potential blockages. Deploying predictive maintenance capabilities can reduce downtime by 20-50% and costs by 5-10%.

Tech IIoT trend: Edge computing

IIoT companies are now shifting implementation models towards edge computing. This technology allows data to be processed near the IoT devices, which reduces latency and the use of bandwidth. Edge computing enables the viability of everything-as-a-service business models and microservices—both of which rely on lightning speed computing capabilities and responsiveness. The OpenFog Consortium which includes CISCO is committed to push fog computing to overcome the current challenges in edge computing—device management, scalability, and cybersecurity. As opposed to edge, fog computing can still process data in conditions where bandwidth is unavailable.

This means manufacturing devices connected through the fog can process data locally while transmitting only pertinent data with very small power consumption. Collision warning technology is also very compatible to fog computing. Vehicles with fog computing devices can also communicate with each other more efficiently and faster. However, IEEE senior member and professor of cybersecurity at Ulster University Kevin Curran notes that fog computing introduces more cybersecurity risks to devices and virtual machines. Addressing these threats will be crucial for wider scale adoption.

Growing use cases

Industrial AI. Artificial intelligence programs built on the edge or on VMs enable predictive analytics. With the remote access capabilities of IoT and near-sensor machine learning combined, response rates and flexibility will reach unprecedented levels. Nakayama Iron Works is now reaping the benefits of their IoT-enabled and remotely accessed rock crushers and machineries.

By leveraging AI-powered IoT and the eWON Cosy connectivity, the company can anticipate and quickly troubleshoot problems remotely. It has greatly reduced their operational costs. The more the fourth industrial revolution continues to disrupt industries, the more IoT development companies will bring IIoT use cases to life. The maturing technology is poised to solve some of the most pertinent business problems today.

12 Simple Ways to Improve Your Credit Report in 2019

Credit Report are the “grades” that credit reporting agencies give you and share with creditors and lenders who may want to extend a loan to you or green-light good credit for you.

Credit Report

Your credit score, also known as a FICO score, is used by creditors to figure out if you’re a good credit risk or not. It lets a creditor know if it’s a good bet that you’ll pay off that credit card or make timely payments on that new car or truck. Start with these credit-boosting tips:

12 Ways to Improve Your Credit Score

Here are just a few ways you can begin improving your FICO score.

1. Get your free credit report

Job one is to know where you stand with your credit score, and you can do that with a free credit report. Request your credit report at annualcreditreport.com; by calling 1-877-322-8228; or by completing the Annual Credit Report Request Form and mailing it to: Annual Credit Report Request Service, P.O. Box 105281, Atlanta, GA 30348-5281. When you order, you’ll need to provide your name, address, Social Security number, and date of birth. To verify your identity, you may need to provide some information that only you would know, like the amount of your monthly mortgage payment.

2. Review your credit report thoroughly

Check your free credit report carefully – it could help you boost your score. Why? It’s common for banks, lenders and credit companies to make a mistake. If you spot any accounts that you don’t recognize, dates that don’t seem to match up, and especially if you see any mention of late payments or penalties, make certain they have been recorded correctly – and don’t be afraid to call the company in question for details. After all, it’s better to spend a few minutes on the phone clearing something up than leave a mistake on the report that could adversely affect your credit record. That phone call could wind up boosting your credit score – and it really only takes a few minutes of your time.

3. Start paying your bills on time

If your credit score truly falls on the low side, bear in mind that time is on your side, as long as you use that time to your advantage. If you do have a history of late payments, you need to turn that trend around and start making sure your bills are paid on time. Sign up for online payments, make a note in your calendar, and keep close track of your bank account savings and spending. In short, do what you need to do to get those monthly bills paid on time. Once you do this for several months, you’ll start seeing an improvement in your credit score.

4. Focus on your credit card bills

Credit card interest is among the highest interest a financial consumer will pay for credit or a loan, so it makes sense to focus on getting your credit card payments down first. As the key to good credit is paying your bills on time, keeping account balances low, paying off high-interest cards first, and taking out new credit only when you need it, are all good moves for credit card consumers looking to increase their credit scores. Focusing on credit card debt is a great way to boost your credit score, as lowering debt, lowering card balances and making payments at a faster rate are solid ways to hike your credit score right away.

5. Avoid opening new credit accounts

Creditors and lenders don’t like it when you open new credit accounts. To them, that means you’re taking on more debt, and may have problems paying it all off. By keeping your open, active credit and loan accounts to a minimum, you’ll keep your credit score on an upward path.

6. Keep your late payments to 30 days

Anyone can find themselves in a financial bind, and maybe can’t pay all of their bills on time. Hey, it happens. But if an unavoidable late payment scenario happens to you, keep your late payments to 30 days. That’s because many lenders and creditors don’t report 30-day late payments to credit reporting agencies, but all report payments that are 60 days late.

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7. Establish a credit score objective

Another good way to hike your credit score is to set a goal and aim to meet it. Let’s say your credit score is 620 – that’s near the line between decent credit and bad credit. Aim to get up to a credit score of 670 within 100 days, by paying down debt, avoiding new debt and getting more aggressive about reviewing your credit report on a regular basis.

8. Avoid high credit card balances

Credit users who overspend and see their card balances rise are just asking for trouble. Credit card reporting firms heavily penalize cardholders with high balances – the amount of money you owe on your credit card. Ideally, you want to keep credit card balances at 30% of your available credit, meaning you need to keep your debt balance at $1,000 or below if you have a credit card with $3,000 in available credit. The best way to do that is to relentlessly pay down credit card debt.

9. Set up automatic payments

Given that payment history accounts for 35% of your overall credit score, the more payments you make, and the earlier you make them, the more it helps boost your credit score. To keep that momentum going, set up automatic payments with lenders and creditors and ask for bill payment deadline alerts from them, as well. This is especially helpful if you’re having trouble paying your bills on time.

10. Don’t cut up your oldest credit card

If you decide to cut up your credit cards, that’s generally fine — particularly if you’re overspending with those cards. Just don’t cut the credit card you’ve owned the longest. The longer you’ve had a credit card opened, the more that helps your credit score (credit scoring firms deems you a reliable risk if you’ve stayed with a single creditor for a long period of time.) Just remember to keep your credit card utilization rate (i.e., the card credit you have but you’re not using) as low as possible, as that helps your credit score.

11. Create and sustain an emergency fund

Building a so-called rainy-day fund of six months of your annual income can insulate you from dry financial periods where you can’t meet all of your debt obligations. That will help keep your credit robust and avoid any dings to your credit score.

12. Stay away from pricey credit monitoring providers

Don’t fall for the bells and whistles sales pitch listed on many credit report websites. Always remember, you’re entitled to one free credit report annually; anything over and above that — such as monthly credit monitoring services, or “fraud alert” plans – will cost you potentially hundreds of dollars. Instead, use that extra money and apply it toward any outstanding debts.

How is a Credit Score Calculated?

Creditors make those calculations based on the data included in your credit reports, which are issued primarily by the three major credit reporting companies – TransUnion, Equifax and Experian. By and large, the entire credit score range stands between 350 and 800. The higher your credit score, the easier it is to get loans and credit. The lower your credit score, the harder it is to get approval for loans and credit, and the more you’ll pay (in interest) for the credit you do earn from a creditor or lender.

A personal credit score is calculated using five critical pieces of personal financial data:

  • Payment History: Approximately 35% of a credit score is based on an individual’s bill payment history.
  • Amounts Owed: Approximately 30% of a credit score is based on the amount of money owed by an individual.
  • Length of Credit History: Approximately 15% of a credit score is based on the length of your credit history.
  • How Much Credit? Approximately 10% of a credit score is tied to new financial credit activity.
  • Types of Credit: Approximately 10% of a personal credit score is based on the kinds of credit and individual uses, like an auto payment, a mortgage loan, credit card bills and personal loans, for example.

How Long Does it Take to Improve Your Credit Score?

The amount of time it will take to improve your credit score is determined by a number of factors, most importantly what caused your score to fall. If you are adding a new credit card, that can impact your credit score and take a little time to recover. If you have to file for bankruptcy, it’s going to take significantly longer.

Pay attention to the calculation of a credit score as well. If payment history is 35%, paying off one or more credit card balances can have a fairly significant impact on your credit score – and a quick one too. An unpaid credit card balance is a much less significant form of credit than a mortgage or bankruptcy claim, so in 1-3 months paying it off will likely show in the form of a better credit score.

A home foreclosure or bankruptcy, meanwhile, will likely take a minimum of 7 years before your credit score can get to a point where it can reasonably seen as “recovered.”

Of course, nothing about this is set in stone or guaranteed. Everyone’s credit score is determined by their own unique set of factors, and its those factors that will cause the rate at which your credit score improves. It will also depend on things generally going right for your credit during that time period; you could be doing everything right to pay off a missed mortgage payment, but unforeseen circumstances with a different line of credit could cause your score to dip further.

Why Improving Your Credit Score is Important

Learning how to improve your credit score should be a top priority for financial consumers, given the advantages a great credit score provides and the disadvantages of ignoring your credit score. Think about it. A good credit score is the key that unlocks the door to ample financial benefits to consumers, including:

  • Fast approval for big-ticket items like a home mortgage, an auto loan, or a credit card application.
  • Lower interest rates on loans and credits
  • Increased approval rates for higher loan and credit limits.
  • A green light for apartment rentals.
  • Better deals on car insurance.
  • No security deposits on everyday services like smartphones, cable television and utilities.

Yet if you ignore your credit score, the opposite happens, from a personal financial point of view.

  • You risk being turned down for loans and credit.
  • Your interest rates on the loans and credit you do get will be higher, leading to more burdensome bill payments.
  • Having to come up with security deposits on everyday services like car insurance or cell phone service.
  • You could be turned down from a job for having bad credit.
  • You could be turned down for an apartment rental.

Cisco DNA Software Subscriptions – The Simple Story

Use your software to keep pace with changing business needs

Software In the world of digital transformation, this question often comes up: How can IT quickly adopt new features and functionality without the process being complex and cumbersome? The answer is software. You love your hardware. We all do. But, if you marry your hardware network to software consumption models, you’ll put your entire network on steroids.

Traditional networks can’t keep up

As an IT professional, you are vital to the success of your business. You design, maintain, and support business initiatives with your network, but traditional networks can’t handle the many new challenges of rapidly evolving technology. How are you handling the explosion of mobile and IoT devices, cybersecurity threats, and multi-cloud adoption? You need a network that automates processes, provides built-in security, and delivers analytics and data insights. Cisco makes this possible through its Digital Network Architecture (Cisco DNA).

Cisco DNA software unlocks your network’s full potential

Cisco DNA takes a software-delivered approach to automating and assuring services across your WAN and your campus and branch networks. Cisco DNA software enables you to streamline operations and facilitate IT and business innovation.

DNA Software

Subscription software delivers ongoing innovation

It is easy to incorporate the benefits of Cisco DNA into your existing network and keep pace with ongoing innovation via software subscription licenses on your Cisco switches, access points, and routers. The benefits of the software subscription model include:

  • Subscription provides ongoing access to innovation by freeing up the software refresh cycle from hardware.
  • Subscription offers better license portability across deployment models – cloud, on-premises, or a hybrid model.
  • Subscription shifts CapEx to OpEx, which gives more financial predictability and linearity with a lower initial investment.

Cisco DNA software subscriptions are available in three tiers depending upon the features and functionality you want. The three tiers are:

  • Cisco DNA Essentials
  • Cisco DNA Advantage
  • Cisco DNA Premier

The tiers are nested, so if you choose Premier, you also receive the features and functionality of Essentials and Advantage. In Advantage, you receive all of the Essentials capabilities.

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Choose the right software tier for each technology

Each tier activates a different set of features and functionality for routers versus switches versus wireless devices.

For SD-WAN and Routing, Cisco DNA Essentials offers simplified management and security protection for an overlay of 50 devices or less. Cisco DNA Advantage offers advanced SD-WAN with enhanced security for feature-rich and varied branch deployment models. The top tier, Cisco DNA Premier, offers advanced SD-WAN security that helps mitigate the most sophisticated threats to your business.

For Switching, Cisco DNA Essentials offers centralized management, base automation and monitoring. Cisco DNA Advantage offers SD-Access capabilities, advanced automation and monitoring, analytics, telemetry, and visibility. The top tier, Cisco DNA Premier, layers on additional security features and enables all Cisco DNA use cases, including SD-Access and ETA.

For Wireless, Cisco DNA Essentials offers base automation, basic assurance, telemetry, element management, and basic security. Cisco DNA Advantage offers policy-based automation with SD-Access capabilities, assurance with AI/ML analytics, and location engagement and insight (Cisco DNA Spaces). Cisco DNA Premier adds advanced security features and is SD-Access ready.

Look for more software details in our ongoing blog series

We’ll continue to bring you updates and explanations about Cisco DNA software in future blogs. Here’s a sneak preview of upcoming topics:

  • Cisco Enterprise Agreement exclusive offers and benefits
  • Cisco DNA software for Switching deep-dive
  • Cisco DNA software for Wireless deep-dive
  • Cisco DNA software for SD-WAN and Routing deep-dive
  • Activating Cisco DNA software with Cisco DNA Center/VManage