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The ecommerce market has grown exponentially in the years since it was introduced to the world as a digitally inclined iteration of traditional commerce. Together traditional commerce and ecommerce function and thrive as incredible examples of just how special and globally inclusive the consumer market is in this day and age. Of course, it has been a learning curve to get to this point, but now that we are here, this is a frontier that is going to go from strength to strength as time goes on. All one must do to realise this is take a step back and look at the nature of the consumer market as it lays in front of them.
There are more emerging fields in the consumer market than ever, each with their own reason and rhyme – the customised product market, for example. Today, there is a larger customised product market than ever. Further, this is a field of the commerce market that is only gaining more and more traction as time goes on. Within that field, which personalised products are worth their weight in gold, which are the most popular, and which hold the most potential for being increasingly prominent in the consumer market in the future?
Custom travel gear
One of the most popular customised products on the international commerce market is custom travel gear. Whether it is your passport holder or your luggage itself, adding your initials or a nickname to your travel gear takes it to the next level, personalises it to a tee, and ensures that when you are looking for your luggage after your next flight, there is a personalised element to your bags that make them easy to spot even (and especially) when so many of the bags that are coming out onto the carousel look similar to yours. Custom travel gear is one of the most popular custom product fields on the market – and for good reason.
Custom tech devices
Today, you do not necessarily have to buy a new device empty and ready to be filled with many different applications and programs. These days, you can customise your device online before you even order it (for a price, of course), so that it comes fully equipped with all the programs and systems that you need for work or for your personal hobbies. From laptops and tablets to mobile phones and cameras, having custom additions to the base product essentially takes it to the next level and ensures that when you receive your new device, you just have to create a password – everything else is installed and ready to go.
Custom wedding favours
One of the most creative and exciting customised products on the market is without a doubt custom wedding favours. Whether it is customised jewellery for the bridal party and mother of the bride and the groom, or custom tumblers or flasks for the wedding party, or any other type of customised wedding favours available to choose from, the point is always the same: custom wedding favours are one of the most delightful and exciting customised product brackets available on the market.
Research has shown that if a house takes a burglar 4 to 5 minutes to break into, they will most likely try the next house. This explains why you should make your house more secure. Essentially, you should put in place measures that will make breaking into your house difficult for burglars. But, how do you do that?
The current market has state-of-the-art systems that can be used to secure a house. For example, Frontpoint offers a modern approach to home safety – wireless security systems which are operated by touchscreen control panels. However, these are costly for some people. Luckily, they are not the only ones that can be used to make a house secure. You can also consider a wide range of in-expensive ways of making a house secure.
Even with a tight budget for a house protection system, it’s unwise to overlook certain steps for ensuring the security of your house. Here are 6 steps to follow when you want to make your house more secure.
1. Install Superior Windows and Door Locks
Good security habits will go a long way in keeping burglars away. Home break-ins statistics show that many thieves look for easy targets. Most break-ins happen during the day between 10 am and 3 pm. And in most cases, burglars take 8 to 10 minutes to complete burglaries.
34% of burglars use the front door to break into a house while 23% use the first-floor window. This shows that thieves look for easy access to houses. Therefore, install superior locks to your doors. Make sure that thieves can’t have an easy time breaking into your house through the windows or doors.
2. Update Your House Locks
Perhaps, it’s been years since you installed new locks. Well, this can make your home more vulnerable to future break-ins. It’s therefore, important to have a closer look at your house locks. Are some of the locks damaged? Is it possible that a stranger has keys to some of the locks? Does the house have exterior locks that are easy to bump open, jimmy, or pick?
If the answer to any of these questions is yes, you need to replace or rekey some of the locks. Install tamper-proof locks that will make your house more secure. Consider the latest and most innovative locks in the market and install them to enhance the security of your house.
3. Reinforce Windows, Doors, Hardware, and Locks
You may have rock solid locks but the hardware, windows, and doors could be flimsy and weak. That means a well-placed kick or slam will allow a person to enter your house within seconds. Therefore, inspect all the entry points, particularly on the first floor. Repair, replace, or reinforce them if necessary.
If you have thin, broken, or hollow-core exterior doors, consider replacing them. Alternatively, add extra support with a security bar or door barricade. Also, make sure that the strike plate is installed properly with at least ¾ inches long screws. That way, the bolt won’t be easy to force out of your door jamb. You can also use door reinforcement kits to strengthen the weak points of the door with strike plates.
4. Install an Effective Home Security System
Ensuring that your house has updated locks, as well as, strong doors and windows alone is not enough. You need to go the extra mile and install an effective home security system. If your house has a security system in place already, have it checked by an experienced professional. This will determine whether the system has faulty sensors or battery issues. a good professional will inspect the overall performance of the system.
It’s also important to have old passcodes of the previous homeowners deleted and a new security pin selected. An ideal security pin should be easy to recall but hard for burglars to guess. If your house doesn’t have a security system, have it installed to make it secure. Even the presence of a security system and its monitoring features alone can deter would-be thieves.
5. Install Proper Lighting
Installing motion sensor lighting is a great way to make a house secure. Thieves don’t want bright spotlights on break-ins. Therefore, installing sensors in the darkest parts of the compound and areas that are not easy to view from the house or streets can deter would-be burglars.
A light illuminates the surrounding areas, as well as, burglars that may hide or pass near the motion sensors and trigger them. Installation of security lighting can be a relatively cheap investment. Therefore, consider installing security lighting around your back and front doors. That way, you will illuminate al entrances and potential places where burglars can hide within your property.
6. Avoid Showing off Your Valuables
To make your house secure, avoid being flashy with valuables. Ideally, minimize the time when people see the valuables in your house from the streets. Before breaking into a house, most thieves will scope out an area to determine whether there is anything valuable they can steal. And, if they spot something valuable inside your house, they will start formulating a break-in strategy.
Therefore, making a house secure can simply entail the removal of items that are commonly stolen from the place where strangers can easily view them. Such items include jewelry, cash, firearms, tablets, TVs, computers, and stereos.
Anything of value and lightweight is a priority for burglars that want to loot valuables. Therefore, lock such items in a safe or keep them in a well-hidden part of the house. Additionally, close curtains and blinds while away or at night to shield your valuable possessions from possible burglars.
The Bottom Line
Burglar-proofing a house does not have to be a costly investment. You just need to know the measures to take to ensure that your house is not an easy target for thieves. Things like keeping valuable possessions away from the eyes of burglars can help make your house secure. However, some measures like making the compound well lit and installing a security system require money. Nevertheless, this investment goes a long way in protecting yourself, family, and valuable possessions. It can also help you save on insurance premiums.
Living in a modern world that becomes more heavily paved with modern marvels like digitalisation and technological advancement, it is little to no wonder that we have entered a time that is more heavily reliant on these modern marvels than ever. The advancements and enhancements in security systems, for instance, are getting bolder and smarter all the time. Further, we in turn are becoming more comfortable, more familiar with the rapidly advancing ideals of said advancements and enhancements. It seems that we are positively immersed in and surrounded by these modern marvels in just about every possible way. We have even delved into the technological advancements that assist in the protection of our pets. These days, pet owner security systems are exceedingly common security systems found in modern homes. Why is that?
The protection of our most precious assets
Considering we have home security systems, car security systems, etc, it should come as no surprise that we have also begun delving into pet security systems. Of course, in the beginning this might seem somewhat strange, even unexpected, but the fact of the matter is that pet security systems are not only here to stay – they are brilliant. The protection of our most precious assets obviously includes our pets. So, having protective measures in place that are appropriately equipped to handle the security of our pets is a technology that is valuable beyond any of the wildest expectations one could have.
How pet owner security systems work
Essentially, pet owner security systems work their magic by either sensing, viewing, or hearing your pets at home through a pet security system not only goes a long way in protecting them should they be stolen from your home, but also in giving you peace of mind when you are at work or otherwise unable to be with them at home. There is an undeniable piece of mind that comes hand in hand with the awareness that you can “check in” from afar when your pet is hanging out at home and you are elsewhere. Even more exciting, is that pet owner security systems are getting smarter all the time.
The current advancements in pet security systems
There are several exciting advancements in pet security systems that are changing the foundations of pet security from the ground up. One of the most thrilling for pet owners around the globe is the development of a pet owner security system that essentially allows pet owners to not only check in on their homes and their pets while they are away, but also allows them the opportunity to have a two-way screen where their pet can see and hear them as well. This is thought to give pets a sense of comfort if they are feeling upset or otherwise unsettled when their owner is not at home, hopefully working its magic by assisting pets in calming down. Moreover, this is just the start for pet owner security systems. The best is yet to come.
It is no secret that we live in a modern world of exhilarating truths and fine tastes. This world that we currently find ourselves navigating our way through is one that is built to be impressive and foreshadowing, to say the least. So, at every possible twist and turn, there is a fresh perspective or a new approach to be found and discussed in relative motion. Many industries have bloomed and flourished as a response to this truth. From entertainment and infrastructure, to agriculture and business, practically every industry has come to fruition and built upon their creative foundations in interesting ways.
The widespread appeal of wine
Take the field of food and drink, for instance, and then narrow it down even further. The blooming wine industry that spans the globe is one that continues to become more and more prominently active all the time. All around the globe, it seems that the world is falling more and more in love with wine. Whether your taste preferences lie with classic Australian wines or fine Sassicaia wines (to name just a few examples of the many that are out there), the point is that you can always find a wine for the occasion. Nine times out of ten, there is always a type of wine that appeals to any one person seated at a bar or at a table.
The thrill of learning about wine
There are vineyards all around the globe. So, naturally, that means that there are wines from all around the globe, too. Depending on where a wine originates from and the season it is grown and taken from the vines to the bottle, a wine can and often does have an entirely unique taste to it. There is a certain thrill in learning about wine that is challenging to find anywhere else. The fact is that wine is a global phenomenon that can be found anywhere in the world, and it is a phenomenon that enjoyed all over the globe. In wine, individuals find a comforting way to enjoy some downtime, to celebrate an event, or to simply mark a moment in time.
The growing adoration of wine
All the time, wine seems to be getting more and more popular. Individuals from around the globe are steadily falling more and more in love with wine and the experiences that they can incorporate a glass of wine into. While it should of course never be the primary reason behind an event or an experience, there is certainly something to be said about the enjoyment that is to be had from enjoying a glass of wine and embracing the experiences that life throws at you. It is primarily for this reason that the wine industry becomes more popular all the time. The global appreciation for wine is one that seems to be growing stronger and more common all the time. As long as there is a love for wine, there will be a thriving wine industry that surrounds that love of wine.
It is no secret that finance is one of the leading industries around the globe. Whether one likes it or not, money does indeed make the world go around. So, it ought to come as no surprise that the finance industry is one of the most fundamentally important industries in the entire world. An undeniable truth to the core, this is perhaps the only constant in the industry. After all, the nature of the finance industry is that it rolls with the inevitable ebbs and flows of the world around it. This has always been the way it works, and it will continue to be the way it works from this point into the future and beyond.
Even so, there are questions surrounding the field of finance and the professional services that operate within it. Naturally, there are individuals who are still coming to terms with the reality that financial services are here to stay. For others, there is a blooming understanding that financial services are not only here to stay, but they are only going to continue evolving to become more prominent and more strictly necessary. However, to understand the next movements, one must understand the evolution that got us here, now in the first place.
Introducing financial services
Within the greater finance industry are different tiers that all have their own means of operation and the like. The financial services industry, for example, is an industry that is responsible for the appropriate and reliable communication between financial companies and the consumers that entrust their financial security and stability to them. Whether one is considering taking a chance on quick cash loans, or investing their savings into investment properties around the globe (to name a few great examples among many), financial services are more valuable than many people can perhaps understand.
Delving into the value of financial services
The value of financial services is one that, quite frankly, cannot be overstated. Considering how often and how heavily we tend to deal with money, it never hurts to have professionals who work in financial services, on your side. Having these types of important connections can and often does mean the difference between haphazardly trying to find your way through the landscape of finance and having the confidence to navigate your way through the financial services industry. Given the emphasis we place on financial security and stability, it is little wonder that financial services have rightfully become so important to us.
The future of financial services going forward
When considering the sheer value of financial services, it is only natural to wonder about the distinct importance of this esteemed industry and how that industry is likely to continue to flourish and thrive going forward. As long as there is a clear emphasis on the role of finances in the way of the world, there will likely, if not certainly, always be a place for the financial services industry to continue its powerful reign. In the future, financial services are likely to continue going from strength to strength, so long as there is a distinct reason for the industry to continue its powerful trajectory onward and upward.
Digital media is a very vast concept of the transfer of knowledge and communication from technology mediums to the consumer. Initially, digital media was put into direct comparison with print media, making it directly linked to addressing mass communication like newspapers or magazines.
However, over the years the meaning and effect of digital media and the understanding of it have grown to conclude that almost all technology can be considered digital media. Experts say that digital media can be anything from pictures, videos, and other content available online even social media, as well as, web development, artificial intelligence, and what is typically the backend of the internet world.
Digital media has transformed intensely over the years and its effects have also started to increase. People have started spending a lot more time on their smartphones than they used to, which has increased the dependence and importance of digital media as it is the most practical means of getting information from one end to the other.
In this regard getting necessary content more visible has become crucial for businesses of all types. SEO services help you stop wasting internet marketing dollars on campaigns that don’t get measurable results. It is time to start driving more customers to your business with unique digital media plans that will grow your business.
Digital media has changed the way people live, the way they work, the way they speak, and some research studies show that not all impacts of digital media are positive. In recent studies, a link between time spent online and attention deficiency has been noted. Digital media has transformed life, and the changes are various.
A big part of the impact of digital media has to do with social media as it continues growing as an essential addition to people’s life. It has been noted now and again that social media has changed the way people live and network with each other.
Communication has become easier thanks to social media where people can talk from one end of the world to another at any moment. All sorts of social media have taken form; Facebook has become more than just a place to post statuses, it has become a platform for people to share their opinions and have a voice. Skype and other video calling platforms have made it easier for travelers to stay in touch with friends, family, and partners, making traveling more convenient. Reddit has become a source for discussing ideas and topics of a wide range.
On the contrary, social media has been said to have caused mental health problems because of the constant visibility of other people’s lives and human tendencies of comparison and jealousy. Over time people have gotten informed about their privacy online too, regarding how much information they share with networks and where that information goes. This is a big reason as to why VPNs have gotten so popular as people want to have more secure networks, they want to use the best means to get directly to the information available online without having to be bothered about their information leaking.
People can get security for particular pages or general VPN options which are also vastly available. Internet security has become important for countries as well which was demonstrated when the European Union asked websites to abide by their General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR).
It’s also necessary to note that almost all information now is readily available on the internet. People find it more convenient to be able to find out about current events on their phones. News websites like Huffington Post, NY Post, and Forbes are people’s form of connecting with the world news.
The attractiveness of digital media also has to do with the level of engagement, people are allowed to voice their opinions by commenting, sharing and linking to different platforms. Media is no longer a way to tell people what one section of society knows and believes, it’s a platform for discussion and understanding different perspectives.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) and robots are another manner in which the transfer of information becomes more convenient and has been the biggest transition of the new digital media. AI like Siri and Google Assistant has become an essential part of how people organize and manage their day-to-day schedules, call people and get information on different topics. Virtual assistance has been portrayed as one of the most common ways for people to manage their work life.
It is also important to realize that as information on technology grows the attention span of people tends to decrease. People spend their whole days on their phone from one app to another, and although it has become a way of life, experts suggest decluttering from social media and the technological world can be very beneficial.
Digital media has changed the way information is not only transferred but also perceived. Moreover, as people become more aware of technology, new innovations are required. People want the information to be easily accessible and even more easily shareable.
Technology giants are constantly working on how to grow digital media and the different ways in which it can become a more essential part of human life. Transfer of knowledge is now not only through the books and ancestors but through what people read and watch online and who they, directly and indirectly, communicate with.
As the dependence on technology grows, however, people are to be more conscious of how they spend their time and how it affects their personality and mental health more than their livelihood. Digital media will continue to enhance life but people should know how to use it and make sure that they are using the platforms to positively impact their lives.
Instagram is a widely used social media network. It’s popular among users from all walks of life. Today, Instagram has over 200 million users visiting a business profile per day. Over 25 million companies globally are using Instagram. In total, Instagram has more than 700 million active monthly users.
These users present a great opportunity for businesses to market their services and products to a more targeted audience. It’s therefore, not surprising to find many businesses creating accounts and trying to get more followers on Instagram. But, does creating a business account on Instagram help in increasing the selling rates via business promotion? Sure, however, businesses must follow contemporary trends in social networks in order to receive interest from Instagram users. For example, post a story with a shrug Emoji and a questionnaire.
Why a Business Account can Increase Sales Rate
Creating an Instagram business account works in boosting sales but it depends on the overall quality of the account and the accompanying content. Essentially, having an Instagram page can help or harm your business. But, when used properly, Instagram can help a business increase sales.
The Power of Numbers
When it comes to social media marketing, the number of followers, subscribers, and likes matter. As of June 2018, Instagram had hit 1billion active monthly users and 400 million daily active Instagram Story users. And, these numbers are growing every day. The social media platform has more than 1 million active monthly advertisers. More than 40 billion photos have been shared on Instagram.
Instagram users share around 95 million videos and photos every day. These are attractive numbers to any marketer. They are just mouth-watering. Where there are numbers there is a possibility of making sales. And just like with other platforms, what matters is how a marketer or product owner present their sales message to the audience. So, if the sales message is packaged and presented properly, it can help increase the sales of a business.
Boosting Brand Visibility
More people are using mobile devices to access the internet than those using desktop computers. With more people using Smartphones to access the internet, it means they can access and share videos and photos. Instagram was initially meant to be a photo-sharing platform. So, if businesses can use their accounts to post relevant and quality content, they can increase boost their visibilities. Posting quality content via a business account can lead to more mentions of a brand. And, this can increase the interest people will have in a brand, which is a first step in the process of generating leads.
Increased engagement is among the secrets to internet marketing success. And, Instagram is the best social media for engagements. Instagram provides an engagement rate of around 4.2 per follower. This is about 58 times the engagement delivered by Facebook.
As such, Instagram is the best place to start building a brand and boosting conversion. As long as business posts quality content, more users will like and share it. They will also leave comments. Such activities will boost engagement between the business and prospects.
A major reason why Instagram works when it comes to promoting a business on social media is the fact that it allows brands to use videos, photos, and texts. And, once a business or brand has come up with videos or images for use on Instagram, it can use them on its website and other social media networks. If a business comes up with well-designed posts, it can reach a more targeted, wider audience. Thus, people that are not following a business on Instagram can still discover the brand and share its images.
Tips for Increasing Selling Rates with Instagram Business Account
Many brands are competing with yours to increase their selling rates with Instagram. To beat your competitors, try the following tips.
Create a Good Business Profile
If your business offers more solutions or does many things, it’s easy to be caught up trying to fit all the information in a profile. Nevertheless, it’s crucial to focus on the most important unique selling points of your business. You can also disclose the next big thing for your business. This can be a product launch, promotion, or event. Also, include a clickable link in the bio and make sure it’s working.
Use Instagram Features and Hashtags
Try things like Instagram Stories to ensure your business stories are displayed at the top of the timelines of your followers prominently. And to increase the reach of your business posts, use hashtags. You can use general hashtags or campaign-specific hashtags. The most important thing is to ensure that every hashtag that you use is relevant.
Know Your Audience
Just like with any other marketing platform, it’s important to know the target audience when it comes to doing business on Instagram. For instance, a business should start by finding out what followers like. It’s easy to know this by finding out what they share. A business can also read comments of the audience to learn the best ways to improve its services and products.
When it comes to promoting a business on Instagram, focus on how you want to solve the problems the audiences are facing, not the product you are selling. The goal should be to show the audience how your product can add value to them. And, make sure that you look good when doing it.
Never forget that Instagram was meant to be a photo-sharing platform. Therefore, visual content is the most important asset when it comes to promoting a business, product, or service on Instagram.
If you run a service-oriented business, focus on showing prospects or customers the process of offering the service. For instance, you can share the mission of your mission and its culture. You can also share how-to guides or tips. If possible, upload short videos or photos. The best videos for Instagram are up to 1 minute long.
The Bottom Line
Whether creating an Instagram account for business increases the selling rates for businesses depends on the account quality and the accompanying content. Overall, a business Instagram account works. Nevertheless, more effort should be put into the quality of the account and content.
We live in the beginning of the digital era. Essentially, what that means is that we are living in a modern world that is paved to the brim with good intentions, digitalisation, and technological advancement. This is a world of our own creation, and so we should not be at all surprised at the way that this world has unfolded and continued to evolve and expand since the dawn of its introduction to the big, wide world. Today, modern society is more hinged on technologies than it has ever been, and it continues to become more so every single day. At the core of that realisation lies the distinct realisation that we are growing more comfortable, more familiar, with technological innovation than we are in its absence. In this way (and so many others), this truly is a whole (digitally empowered) new world.
The technologies that have changed the world
So, in a world that is steadily becoming more technologically inclined all the time, it comes as no surprise that our reliance on technological innovations like the worldwide web has become stronger and stronger too. The internet has been remarkable since it was first introduced to the world, changing life as we knew it forever. Over the years, the enhancements to the internet have only gotten more advanced and more impressive. In many ways, this is a positive, but it can and does also inevitably open doors that pose potential risks. Protecting ourselves has never been so important – especially online.
The necessity of cybersecurity measures today
This is exactly why cybersecurity is so important in this day and age. Now that we are engaging online more than ever and thus investing more and more of ourselves and our lives into the virtual landscape that is the worldwide web, it becomes more and more obvious that there is a growing necessity for cybersecurity measures. Essentially, cybersecurity is all about protecting online activity and users by initiating and upholding several different virtual security measures. Each of these measures is designed to protect the privacy and safety of a user’s online activity. In a time like today, this type of innovation is more important than it has ever been.
What we can expect going into the future now
There are so many cybersecurity options out there today, thankfully. Whether it is anti-malware programs or a standard VPN (to name a few examples among the many), cybersecurity is more powerful than it has ever been. What is more, is that it seems to only continue its upward trajectory, getting better and better all the time. Having a reliable, secure and private connection really can make the difference between being protected online and needing to get your ducks in a row when you find you have been too lax. Going forward, we can almost certainly expect more advancement. Cybersecurity continues to step it up all the time these days, and there is no reason to think that will change any time soon.
The internet might seem like a place of freedom but the sad reality is the average online user will be restricted when it comes to what they can watch and access. Big corporations, governments and authorities often use software designed to block certain sites, track users and steal their data.
This is certainly true for the citizens of Canada. In order for them to stay protected and get passed restrictions they too will have utilize effective software. That is why so many Canadians are turning to virtual private networks (VPNs). These are not only versatile and effective. They are also perfectly legal in Canada.
In simple terms a VPN connects a user to the internet in a secure way. Their data traffic will go through an encrypted virtual tunnel. Therefore the user will be less vulnerable to trackers, hackers and cyber criminals. A VPN extends the amount of freedom Canadians can have when browsing the internet and deep web. The main advantages of having one installed are anonymity, security and the ability to bypass blocks.
Torrenting is enjoyed by people all over the world. The ability to share data files with others in a free and easy way is a wonderful thing. However, this activity can potentially expose sensitive user information. If someone in Canada started downloading or uploading on a torrent site their IP address would most likely be visible.
An IP address can also reveal the user’s geographic location. In some cases this may be enough to expose their identity as well. People who regularly engage in P2P sharing run the risk of this exposure every time they torrent. If anyone can see their IP address it is only a matter of time before a malicious entity takes advantage of the sensitive information.
A VPN will conceal a person’s true IP and make it appear as though they are located somewhere else, ideally in a completely different country. The biggest VPN companies give their users access to thousands of global servers. If a Canadian used a server in Europe their IP origin would appear to be from that continent. Masking an IP with VPN technology is an essential aspect of modern torrenting. Without it the consequences can be disastrous.
Bypassing Geo Blocks
Numerous sites and services on the internet have geo based restrictions in place. This is especially true when it comes to streaming sites such as Netflix, iPlayer, Prime Video and many others. A person in Canada would not be able to watch the British version of Netflix without a VPN.
Conversely, if a Canadian ex-pat wanted to watch geo-blocked television station content from their home country they would also need to utilize a VPN. This technology is not however a way to watch restricted content for free. The user will still have to register and pay for the streaming service content.
Live sporting events are notorious for “black outs”. This is when the event is not allowed to be broadcast to a certain territory because the network is not local. A black out can be very frustrating for sports fans. VPNs let users watch sports through an international server, preventing this issue.
Keeping Data Protected
Accessing the internet without any security software in place is risky. There is always the potential that a third party is monitoring the user’s activity. They will need to be protected from malware, ransomware and other malicious software.
When people use the internet for extended periods of time they will inevitably have to share sensitive information. This could include bank details, login usernames and passwords, personal information, medical history or work files. Their connection will have to be safe and a VPN is ideal for this. It stops hackers in their tracks and secures user traffic.
It is becoming increasingly difficult for the average person to keep their identity hidden when online. Criminals are not the only ones who want to get their hands on the general public’s data. Many legitimate but intrusive organizations try to collect user data. This could be for research and marketing purposes.
It is not uncommon for Canadians to search for items to buy and then be targeted by ads for these products. They have not had their mind read, instead their search information has been covertly collected. With this info a company can create an entire consumer profile and continue to target them with tailor made ads.
The practice of brazen data collection has become so disturbing that people use VPNs simply to stay anonymous. This does not mean they have anything to hide. They simply want to avoid creepy marketing practices.
VPNs have revolutionized the safety and freedom of regular people who use the internet. It is likely that the popularity of VPNs will increase even more in the near future.
The U.S. continues to be one of the most pro-business environments in the world. If you’re a Canadian or citizen of another foreign nation, there are clear benefits to launching or expanding your firm in the states.
But before doing so, you’ll need to understand a little more about the various structures and legal guises that are available in this business environment.
Four Types of Business Structures
A business structure may seem like it involves nothing more than a piece of paperwork or administrative box to be checked off. But it’s actually a significant facet of how one establishes a company’s financial and legal foundation.
In the U.S., there are five common structures. Here they are and what each one entails:
1. Sole Proprietorship
This is the simplest set-up. Technically, you don’t have to do anything to form one, but there’s no liability protection or separate tax status. The owner simply files revenue on his or her personal income tax return as a Schedule C.
Perhaps the biggest perk in a sole proprietorship is the fact that your business earnings are taxed only once — unlike most other structures. You simply pay estimated taxes in four equal amounts throughout the year.
A disadvantage is that you’re personally responsible for any debts the business incurs. If your firm is unable to pay off its debt, creditors can come after your personal assets (such as your house).
Although limited liability companies (LLCs) have been around since the 1970s, they’ve grown substantially in popularity over the past two or three decades. Apart from sole proprietorships, the LLC is the most popular business entity.
LLCs are essentially a hybrid that combines some of the most attractive benefits of both partnerships and corporations. They’re extremely easy to establish — even for foreign citizens.
You don’t have to be a US citizen or company to create one. The barriers to entry are low and the ongoing upkeep minimal.
If you’re going into business with other people, a partnership may be the best option. There are two common types: limited partnerships and limited liability partnerships.
In a limited partnership, one general partner has unlimited liability, and the others have only limited liability. The general partner gets more control over the company, but all the players have some leadership and management capabilities.
In a limited liability partnership, all partners incur limited liability. This offers protection of personal assets and ensures one partner cannot be held responsible for the actions of the others.
A corporation — also commonly referred to as a C corp — is a legal entity that’s distinct and separate from its owners. Corporations are taxed on profits and can be held legally liable.
A corporation is the strongest protection against liability (from an owner’s perspective), but it’s also the costliest. Owners get taxed twice: first when the company makes a profit and second when the owner is paid.
Choosing the Right Business Structure
As we’ve explained, every business structure offers a unique set of benefits. But there are also risks and negatives that come with each option.
As you consider which one might be the best for you and your operation, you’ll want to think about the following five factors:
- Control. How much control do you want and need over the company? Are you planning to do it alone, or have partners? The type of entity you select will determine how the business operates.
- Liability. This is obviously a huge element in the equation. Most people prefer to limit the amount of personal liability they have in the business. The more complex the structure, the more you can keep your personal assets out of harm’s way.
- Taxes. The business structure you select has a significant impact on the amount of taxes you and your business will be expected to pay. Do you want to keep things simple, and file your taxes as part of your personal return? Or are you interested in separating everything for other potential tax advantages?
- Cost. Every legal structure involves different costs. Some are cheap to set up, others require a hefty initial investment. Some can be done on a DIY basis, while others will call for assistance from lawyers and accountants.
- Administration. The ongoing administration of a legal entity can also vary dramatically. If you want something that requires little to no maintenance, you can find it. But if you want a more complex structure, it may require precise record-keeping and filing.
If you’re thorough and accurate in your evaluation of each of these elements, you’ll find it easier to narrow down the options and select the right business structure. It should be noted that there is no perfect legal entity, though.
Any time you choose one option over another, you’ll have to make sacrifices. The essential thing is to arrive at an educated decision that puts your best interests first.