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Find One That Supplies Bulk Products Too

When you contact a vending machine distributor, you have the option to choose from many different types of vending machines. Some distributors specialize in one type of vending machine, such as soda vending machines, whereas others have all kinds for you to choose from. Most of the distributors have a website where you can browse the list of used and new vending machines. When you do choose a vending machine distributor, you should choose one that can also supply you with the bulk products that you need.

Bulk vending distributors have a wide variety of supplies that you can purchase for stocking your vending machines. When you sit down to discuss the business with a vending machine distributor, you can get a good estimate of the costs involved in operating this type of business. You do have to factor in the costs of buying the machines and the bulk vending products that you need. You also have to deduct the commission that you pay the business owners of the locations where you place your machines.

Distributors of vending machines deal directly with the manufacturers and they also have great associations with other vending business owners. If you want to find a vending route for sale, you best source of information is a vending machine distributor. In dealing with the various operators, the distributor will be able to tell you why the person is selling the route and whether or not he/she thinks it would be profitable for you to buy it. There are also bulk vending distributors that sell products only and do not deal in the vending machines themselves.

Take at look at the types and condition of the machines that a vending machine distributor has to sell. Most of the time you will see very little difference in a new and used vending machine. The main difference will be in the price of each one, so after your inspection you will realize how much money you can save by buying used vending machines. Distributors of vending machines also offer payment plans so that you can finance the cost of the machine over a period of time, saving you money on the initial investment. If you are not sure whether or not you will remain in the vending machine business, you can also lease the vending machines from bulk vending distributors.

You won’t find it hard to contact a vending machine distributor when you search online. Distributors of vending machines will deliver the machines to you and will also arrange to pick them up if you decide you no longer want to use the machines of a specific distributor or you want to get out of the business. However, bulk vending distributors do not take back any supplies that you purchase, but you may be able to sell what you have left over to another person just getting started in the vending machine business. A vending machine distributor will be able to give you expert advice on how to operate your vending route and on the products that have the most profit.

Chemical etching – An innovative process for your all nameplate requirements

Chemical etching is a skilled practice of engraving your brand name on a nameplate. Texas Nameplate Company etches your emblem directly or indirectly on the metallic or non-metallic base and makes it more pliable to any lacerations. Chemical etching can be a substitute for embossing. The chemical etched nameplates are made by masking certain areas of metal by acid resistant material and then taking off desired amount of exposed material by acid. Widely custom name plates are etched on aluminum, stainless steel, brass, alloys etc and then baked after stuffing with varnishes for a perfect finish. The depth of industrial name plates etching varies from 0.0015 to 0.003 inches, depending on the height and stroke of letters and the type of metal or alloy. Along with chemicals gas and electric processes can also etch these wide ranges of metals.

Etching, also termed as ‘milling’ is of different types like laser etching, abrasive etching in which abrasives are used, photo chemical etching which is quite inexpensive and a high quality etching method. Photo chemically etched metals thus produced can be used as cost effective name tags, custom labels, panel boards, personalized name tags, industrial name plates for commercial uses and personalized name plate. Electro etching in which electric current is used instead of chemicals, dry etching does not use chemicals at all, Reactive ion etching which uses electric circuits and gas having chlorine or fluorine as iodized particles and vapor phase etching which also make use of reactive gases and many others to add to the list.

Chemical etching is preferred for practical applications and product identification tag. Name Tags made by chemical etching are durable items, which withstand even the harsh surroundings. Chemical etching makes your custom name tags withstand toughest
environments, high temperatures and extreme outdoor conditions. Thus solve your purpose year after year. Texas Nameplate Company compliments the etching with screen-printing to avoid splitting or other form of wear and tear. Various adhesives are also added to etched metal name tags according to your specifications for pasting or welding. You can use our chemical etching nameplates on truck, tankers and trailer, control panels, dials and gauges of aircrafts, asset and property plates; and operating and warning signs for numerous electronics, military vehicles, and machinery etc. Chemical etching is also used to create stencils for commercial art and woodworks.

You can always depend upon TNC for any queries regarding the etching of your nameplates and sort out material suiting your specific requirements.

Designing Ads? Remember The Reader

When you are creating advertising design for the newspaper, magazine or direct mail, what do you think might be one of the most important considerations?

If you answered readability, congratulate yourself! Fancy graphics may get the ad noticed, but readers must be able physically to read the words. This elementary concept sounds simple enough, yet is often ignored. If they can’t read it, they can’t understand enough about your offer to respond.

With todays’ sophisticated and virtually unlimited graphic computer options, it is easy for the graphic design advertising person to get sidetracked into believing what is on the screen looks like a true work of art!

Here are some advertising design questions to ask:

1. Want your ad to look different? Examine a few past issues of the publication where your ad will be appearing. Often publications create ads themselves (“pub-set”) and they can tend to look similar. See if you can spot them. Then try to develop a graphic look different than the other ads. Set your ad apart by using a different type face family that is easily read.

2. Is the advertisement legible? In their desire to be different and stylish, some of todays’ magazines make reading difficult.

Here are some common problems. White type on a light pastel background. Or light pastel type on a slightly darker background of the same color. Or colors that don’t contrast well when viewed in black and white, such as dark forest green type printed on a background of fire engine red.

It is better to go for the headline in big, lighter type against a much darker background.

3. Trying to cram too much information into a small space? One of the big problems is trying to fit too many words and concepts into a small space.

Here is where small space is actually your friend. It forces you (or the writer) to break down your ideas into simple words and simple concepts. Bear in mind that the goal of many advertisements is to solicit an inquiry, not to tell the entire story.

Often readers look to the details to figure out if they want to act. The type showing those details should be large enough to see and comprehend, even for those who have trouble with their vision. Type in color really needs to be 10 point, if not 11 to be read by the entire population.

With black and white newspaper ads, it is possible to use typefaces as small as 8 point because their comprehension is made easier by black type on newsprint. In magazines, black type as small as 4 points (on a white background) has been used. The clarity is astounding, but many people need a magnifying glass!

In conclusion, ignoring these three considerations can spell disaster for the reader who is trying to understand the advertising message. Good advertising design creates graphic effects that enhance the writers’ words and contribute to the overall success of the ad.

© 2006 Jon Sinish

This article may be reprinted and distributed as long as the resource information remains intact.

Business Cost Savings Through Safety

Business Cost Savings Through Safety

Setting a health and safety program in place will reduce costs. Having a program will reduce accidents and will lead to lower company worker’s comp premiums; further business insurance companies prefer their customers to have health and safety programs. These insurance companies might even discount the premium if a program can be proved to exist. The average cost of an accident is $68,000. Direct costs in accidents such as worker’s comp and fines levied can close a business. Indirect costs such as low morale of employees, legal fees, and retraining can be as costly if not more.

A working program will:
1) Improve employee morale – Shows care in their well being
2) Reduce revenue loses – Fewer accidents keeps all employees at work
3) Give a boost to the customer – Makes sure business is operating optimally

Small businesses that have a voluntary health and safety program in place have fifty percent less accidents and reported insurance claims than that of their counterparts according to OHSA stats. Most small businesses fall below the legal requirements for having a formal health and safety program in place due to number of employees on staff. Sixty eight percent of reported accidents are in the service industry which shows even businesses such as retail establishments are not free of accidents.

A health and safety program can be started by writing a health and safety policy; this is simply values that a company wishes to convey in its work processes. Secondly, is how communication between all employees and owners will function. And lastly, put procedures in place to ensure safe practices.

To find unseen hazards and unsafe practices, an audit needs to take place. Take a hard look at the workplace and record all factors that may lead to injury. These hazards might be dangerous chemicals or as simple as a letter opener. Identifying these hazards will lead to procedures to controlling them. Controls such as “Don’t run with scissors in your hands” are effective. Write all procedures in a manual.

Implementing these health and safety procedures will be done with behavioral change. Some programs become weak and non effective because of:
1) No definition of safety practices – No written processes
2) No teamwork – Safety is communication from the top to bottom and vice versa. A well written plan will describe what roles everyone plays in safety policies.
3) No effective goals – The “accident free days” poster will come as a result of sound safety processes.
4) Wrong incentives – Money as a reward does not work well. Health and safety should be fun and worth employees effort. The right incentive plan can be cost effective and have obtainable goals. Incentive plans can include movie passes or simply “free coffee on the boss.” The insurance industry reports for a dollar spent on health and safety yields four to six dollars in savings.

Once all of the hard work of developing and implementing the health and safety program is done, set aside some time each month to review the workplace. Record what is found; this is a good practice to see dangerous trends that might occur such as a fire exit constantly being blocked. On the quarters of the year post a meeting with employees. These meetings are a great way to get vital feed-back from employees and keep them involved. At least once a year, do an audit to make sure your health and safety program is current with present business operations.

Competing With Color Levels The Playing Field

According to the United States Small Business Administration, small businesses represent 99.7 percent of all employers. There are an estimated 22 million small and midsize businesses (SMBs) in the U.S. today. Such companies are constantly challenged with the need to create a huge impact in a noisy marketplace with a limited budget.

Today, affordable imaging and printing technology makes it possible to build an in-house marketing program. In fact, Revival Lighting, a vintage lighting fixtures company in Spokane, Wash., cut the cost of producing marketing materials 90 percent when they brought marketing in-house. In addition, because marketing materials can age quickly and frequently need updating, companies with the flexibility to respond on the fly will impress customers while reducing costs.

Color has become an effective, even necessary tool in marketing materials. According to a study by Loyola College in Maryland, using color increases brand recognition by up to 80 percent.

Bold and multicolored designs can impact people’s moods. Environmental green is considered hip and has taken on new, positive associations, while the combination of blue and floral reds has been found to evoke vintage designs and heritage, according to a 2005 study by The Color Association of the U.S.

In addition to printing materials in-house, SMBs should take advantage of inexpensive and often free marketing services that are available on the Web. For example, HP hosts an in-house-marketing portal for entrepreneurs and SMBs. It contains case studies, how-to seminars and other free tools and information, including over 200 free marketing templates ranging from brochures to an image library.

Blogs-online journals or newsletters intended for general public consumption-are another great tool for learning more about how to use color and create marketing materials in-house. To save time and money, SMB marketing guru John Jantsch, who maintains the popular blog Duct Tape Marketing, recommends that businesses create a marketing kit describing you, your company, services provided and what sets your business apart from the rest.

To improve marketing effectiveness on a shoestring budget, bring it in-house, remember to use color, take advantage of free services and seek out expert advice.

Civilization 4 and Why I Hate My Office Phone

If you’re familiar with the strategy PC gaming series “Civilization”, you probably know that it’s only slightly less addictive than crack. I’ve never tried crack, but the “word on the street”, so to speak, is that it’s a bit hard to let go of. I recently purchased Civilization 4, which is the latest in the Civilization series. That in itself isn’t so interesting, but what happened to me at my job as a result of it most certainly is. I work as a network administrator for a large insurance company in Illinois.

Part of my job is to repair PC’s as needed, which is quite often considering how many there are around this place. I informed my coworker, also a big civilization fan that I had the game and he suggested I bring it in for a little test run. Against my better judgment, we decided to play a hot seat game during work. “Hot seat” means that one player takes a turn, followed by the other, which is only possible with turn based games such as Civ. We both figured that there would always be one of us to answer the phone in our little repair-shop cubbyhole so we didn’t see how we could possibly get caught. Boy were we wrong! About four hours into a game things started getting interesting.

My civilization found his civilization and we started going to war against each other, as one might expect. I sat down for my turn and my coworker decided to head off to the bathroom. The phone rang, and I didn’t pick up so that whoever was on the other end wouldn’t hear the Civ theme music or the explosive sound of my Panzers running over his infantry. What I failed to remember is that our advanced phone system allows anyone to communicate with us on an open speaker phone provided we aren’t on the phone already. My boss utilized this function since no one answered while I was taking my turn…o.k., actually while I was taking my turn and bragging out loud to myself about how well I was doing in the game. I found myself in his office that afternoon, but luckily I was only reprimanded and not fired. Not only did I get into trouble, my coworker continues to make jokes about it at my expense.

I hate my office phone.

Commercial Machine Vending – What’s The Best Way To Get Started?

If commercial machine vending is a business that you are interested in, there is a wealth of information about vending machines and vending routes available online. It is one business that is easy to get into, but depending on the types of commercial vending machines you want to have, it could require a substantial investment. The distributors for commercial machine vending machines often have payment plans available and you can choose to lease the equipment you need.

Some people prefer to get into the vending machine business by purchasing an established vending route. Distributors can give you information about vending routes for sale where the machines are already placed in strategic locations. The locations for the vending machines determine how much money you will make in commercial machine vending because you do need areas where there are lots of people. The distributors will also have a used vending machine to purchase, which can save you money in getting started.

It is impossible to accurately predict how much money you can make with commercial machine vending. The success or failure of your business will depend on the location of the machines as well as the products that you sell and the reliability of the vending machines. If you want to purchase a vending route for sale, you should do your research beforehand and check out the machines. You might approach the seller about a vending machine to purchase so that you can start out small. This will also give you a chance to see if purchasing the full vending route might be beneficial to you.

Since the vending machine business is a commercial enterprise, you do need to abide by state/provincial rules regarding commercial machine vending. You will need to have a business licence and you need to keep accurate financial records for tax purposes. Another aspect that you have to consider with a vending route for sale is that the business owner gets a commission of the amount of money that you take out of each machine. This is usually 40% of the gross, before you deduct any expenses.

Look for a vending machine to purchase when you want to get into commercial machine vending. Most people start off with candy or gumball machines, but there is also a great profit into snack and soda vending machines. There are also vending routes for sale with machines that sell medical supplies, such as aspirin or even products associated with personal hygiene, such as toothpaste, soap and dental floss. The possibilities for products are almost endless when you consider the commercial machine vending business.

Foreclosure Listings Home Buying Tips

Home buying is a big deal, but it doesn’t have to be difficult.

People buy homes for many different reasons. Most buy for the sole purpose of living the American Dream, others use the home buying market as an investment tool, and some even use the margins inherent in real estate transactions as their daily income. Many homes are sold each year as foreclosure listings. These can be purchased for a significant discount over market value.

There are many factors one needs to consider when buying a house, whether to live in or as an investment opportunity through a foreclosure listings directory.

First and most important is do the research. Know what you’re buying.

One of the most important factors to research when buying a home is location. City, State, and, even neighborhood should all be considered carefully.

We’ve heard it said over and over again. “Location, Location, Location”

So why is location so important? Well, unless you plan to live in the house forever, eventually, you or your estate will want to sell it. You want the home to appreciate in value. You also want to be able to sell quickly. What you don’t want is a house for sale sign sitting in your front yard for years.

It doesn’t matter how wonderful your property is, you’ll have a very difficult time trying to sell your home for top dollar in a bad neighborhood in a reasonable amount of time. This doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s a bad home. It simply means that there will be less demand. That’s not what you want when you decide or have to sell your house.

One needs to apply a neighborhood litmus test when buying a home. Things to consider include schools, nearby growth and development, and convenience. Local governmental agencies often list a school district’s rankings. This information can also be found on the Internet. If all else fails, real estate agents have access to this information and can be very helpful. The value of your home will appreciate much more if it is located in a neighborhood with good schools.

New construction nearby also plays a great role in improving the value of a house and should definitely be considered when buying a house. A neighborhood which is on the outskirts of a new development will benefit from the higher prices of the newly constructed homes. If, however, the neighborhood exhibits signs of decline, one should think twice before buying that house.

One other item to consider when looking for a house for sale is it’s proximity to places of convenience like shopping centers, transportation hubs, and parks. Remember, someone else will be house buying from you in the future. It will happen. And… They will be looking at the same factors at that time.

Cheaper is Not Always Better

I work for a large insurance firm in the northwest, in an office with over 500 other employees. Management recently decided to replace our existing phone system as the old system was no longer meeting our needs. I and my co-workers were under the impression that they were going to update the system, as in “make an improvement”, and that we would have late model phones with technological advancements galore. Boy, were we in for a surprise.

One day a few weeks ago, we all came in to find new phones on our desks. These were not the state-of-the-art communication devices we had in mind. Instead of the sleek, sophisticated, caller IDing, multi-line handling, LCD displaying wonders of the modern age we all dreamed of, there was a simple phone with a keypad on the receiver…not unlike what you might have had at home 15 years ago. In addition to the new phone, there was a sheet which explained in graphically painful detail exactly which series of buttons one would have to push in order to make this thing function properly. We had to now enter a digit to put someone on hold, enter a three digit code to transfer someone (one digit, dial tone, two digits) and enter a ridiculously long series of numbers to access our voicemail.

Needless to say, we were in shock. I knew it wouldn’t take long before the roars of complaining would drown out the usual office din. Sure enough, by lunchtime our office manager came in to tell everyone that we were simply going to “try it out for a while” and that the company had saved thousands by choosing this option. I and the other employees were fairly certain that we had already lost thousands in reduced productivity that morning alone. Oh, well…it’s their company, we just bring in the money for them.

For the next few days, we tried to get used to saying “hold, please, while I transfer you”, removing the receiver from our faces and trying not to curse as we made a lame-duck attempt at pressing keys, listening and pressing more keys. It was a nightmare. We were getting pretty fed up with it, but just assumed that this was what we would have to deal with. Then, out of the blue, we came in one day to find real phones with real features at our desks. No more looking at the receiver while we frantically tried to key in numbers fast enough not to drop the call. No more ten digit voicemail “pins”. No more of having no idea who was calling or where the call came from. Ahhhh, relief at last.

Later the same day, we heard a rumor circulating around the office that the VP of operations had returned from a two week trip to New York. His words, upon seeing one of the phones management had originally purchased on his desk were, “get rid of them”. All it took were those four words from a higher-up to set things right. Unbelievable.

Bylaws – The Guts of a Corporation

Most states make forming a corporation relatively painless by providing forms for practically everything. The bylaws of the corporation, however, are an area you don’t want to rely on a form.

What Are Bylaws?

Bylaws are the technical rules that govern how a corporation will be run. They are a private document for the corporation and are not filed with any government entity. The purpose of the bylaws is to set out how things such as meetings, voting and share transfer will occur with the business.

Provisions

Typically, the bylaws will be the biggest document in your corporate book. If you are a single shareholder entity, they tend to be fairly straightforward since there isn’t really any dispute possibility unless you have a split personality. If there are two or more shareholders, however, the document is going to be a key item because it is going to detail voting rights and so on.

Typically, the bylaws of a corporation will cover the following specific issues:

1. Board of Director Meetings – When, where and how meetings will be conducted.

2. Notice of Meetings – The form, time and how notice must be given to board members.

3. Quorums – Before a board can issue resolutions on corporate business, a certain percentage of board members must be present. This “Quorom” is set out in the bylaws.

4. Annual Meetings – The bylaws typically detail when and where the annual meeting of the entity will occur.

5. Special Meetings – The process by which special board meetings may be called when an issue arises that requires the immediate attention of the board.

6. Voting Rights – Language detailing the voting rights of shareholders and board members in relation to passing or defeating resolutions.

7. Share Transfer Rights – Language detailing share transfer issues such as right of first refusal and so on.

8. Directors – Language detailing how many board members there will be, the length of their term, compensation, etc.

9. Amendment – The process by which the bylaws can be amended to reflect the evolution of the business.

10. Removal – Language detailing when and how a board member can be involuntarily removed.

There are numerous other provisions that can and probably should go into the bylaws of a corporation. Make sure to discuss them with your attorney.