Whilst there are some elements of business insurance that are required legally, there are also many additional options that may seem as though you are paying over the odds while your business is running smoothly. That is of course until you are faced with a situation where you are thankful to have the financial backup provided by good business insurance. Whilst it would be nice to predict the future, no one can tell when these disasters may strike, and it is much more comforting to know you can carry on with business as usual in such situations.
Here Doug Kelly, Director of Bluedrop Services insurance brokers, discusses some of the main benefits of having business insurance and why is it needed.
Providing protection against being sued
If you are unfortunate enough to find yourself caught up in a liability claim, business insurance will cover the significant costs involved. Even if you are not at fault the cost and damage to your reputation could be fatal to the continuation of your business. Whether it be from an accident, disgruntled employee, or a product safety issue, there are so many potential scenarios that can land you in this situation particularly with liability claims being so common these days. As any astute business owner knows, operating without insurance isn't a risk worth taking.
Keeps your employees protected
Whilst you do legally need to keep your employees protected with employer’s liability insurance, it is also important to remember they are your best asset and deserve additional compensation protection. Employer’s liability insurance doesn't just protect those on your payroll, but also covers any contractors, interns or freelance staff while working at your offices too. It's worth noting, when taking out this policy that employer's liability insurance is a legal requirement and that £5 million is the legal minimum cover level for employer's liability insurance.
Good business insurance and additional benefits such as health insurance will help to keep your team in good health as well as attracting and retaining your staff. Perhaps there are also key personnel that you should consider insuring individually should something happen to take them out of the picture when their presence is crucial to the business.
Some client contracts will demand it
If your business provides a professional service, there may be some clients that will require you to have specific insurances such as professional indemnity insurance. This provides them with the peace of mind that they will be compensated should anything go wrong or they be advised incorrectly. It provides a guarantee that you have the financial means to back up your professional work and makes relying on your services less of a gamble. Professional Indemnity, otherwise known as Errors and Omissions insurance, will ensure you are covered for legal and defence costs as well as court costs and any settlement fees that may be involved.
It can help prevent business closure
In the event of a disaster or claim, business insurance will help to recover your property and equipment whether it be from natural disaster or theft. Often it can take months or even a couple of years to recover following this type of disaster and in those situations business interruption insurance will cover your loss of income during the period it takes to get you back up and running. Without this, many businesses (up to 40%) fail to re-open.
Business interruption insurance is a key component of any business continuity plan. Whilst your standard commercial insurance will cover you for your premises and contents should disaster strike, business interruption insurance is there to cover your loss of income suffered during the period it takes to get you back up and running.
Protects your physical assets
All too often a business can suffer loss from natural disaster such as burst pipes or weather damage or even theft of your equipment. With a good insurance policy to cover your buildings and contents insurance you won’t need to worry about replacing or repairing your much needed and relied on assets.
Whether you run an office, retail outlet, pub, restaurant, hotel or factory, the value of your business contents is likely to be substantial, with a great deal of your assets being tied up in your premises. If these assets aren’t insured correctly, this could affect the day to day running and the immediate revenue of your business.
Properly insuring your business will mean you can rest easy knowing you are protected. By approaching an experienced broker they will ensure you are fully covered, have access to top rated insurers and can guarantee you aren’t paying over the odds.
For more information read our guide to deciding the right level of business insurance.
The term cloud accounting tools can seem a bit intimidating to some people, however in reality it is a simple concept. Anything that is described as being cloud based means that it can be accessed remotely via a website, as long as you have an internet connection. This makes it much more convenient than software that has to be downloaded onto a specific computer. So, a cloud accounting tool is software designed to help you carry out accounting tasks for your business, from anywhere you want.
Using accounting software helps you to save time, as it manages lots of different responsibilities for you. For example, it will automatically generate invoices at the right times using the right information, send them and chase them up if they are not paid. Having an automatic rather than manual system also helps to cut down on human error; minimising mistakes, complications and therefore improving the reputation of your business.
Furthermore, using cloud accounting software gives you more value for money than hiring a member of staff to look after it, just check out this Xero vs Quickbooks comparison for example. Accountants are notoriously expensive but if you prefer to have a real person looking over your accounts, it is easy to blend your software with their methods on a part time basis as it has also been designed for this.
Cloud accounting software has been designed with the user in mind so don’t be intimidated by the perception of accounting being complex. It’s a way to have more access to your accounts without having to organise them yourself. The remote aspect of cloud-based software makes it highly convenient, and ideal if you’re always out and about looking after various aspects of your business.
Another benefit of using accounting software is that it stores your and your customers’ information securely, with easy access to it. If you use a service like Piesync to sync the various apps you use for your business such as marketing, accounting and email apps you can access useful information from them all and use it for accounting purposes, such as customer contact details.
By using software to help you with your business operations, you benefit from the most up to date industry information as it is updated all the time. Constant improvements are also made to the software itself via automatic updates, and you can communicate with a network of other business owners to discuss and help each other with the various challenges you’re facing.
Using cloud accounting software is a great idea for businesses for a number of reasons. Firstly, it uses time far more efficiently thanks to its automatic processes, in comparison to you attempting to handle your finances manually or hiring an accountant. It also carries out a better-quality service. It is designed to be easy to use and is remote so you can use it anywhere. Furthermore, you can sync your apps to be able to access information like contact details easily, and you benefit from industry updates and a community of like-minded users. Take a look at imafish.co.uk for more business tips such as small business accounting principles.
For a person who likes to lead a relaxed time with his or her profession, the trading business is the best. It also lets the traders use their decisions properly with each trades. For that more and more traders are joining this profession each year. You will not find more good results about the trader’s performance. Some of them may not have to right mindset for this profession. Or some may lack in trading knowledge. There can be also in biasing issues. No matter what it is, you will have to get rid of it. Like those problems, the trading time is a massive issue for the traders. We are talking about traders not knowing when to close a trade or how to set the target for their position sizes. In the following, we are going to talk about it with more detailed information.
Get the proper trading knowledge
For making the right targets of trades, traders have to know how to analyze the market's condition. It is the first things which will let you select a position. You will also have to make a position size based on your analogy and the targets. For positioning the traders to have to know about using the simple and affecting terms of the price charts like the support the resistance points. Then they will also have to learn about using the tools like the Fibonacci one. Then you can also do with just the price trends and key swings. Then after dealing out with the positioning, the traders will have to think about targets with the help from risk to profit ratio. With all things covered you will be able to design your whole trading process.
Take logical decision
Give your trade enough time and space. If you place a tight stop or close your trade early, you will miss many good trades. The experts of the UK trading community always play safe in their online trading account. They never close their profitable trades too early as it kills the risk-reward ratio. As a new investor it’s very hard to find great trades but if you follow the basic rules of investment, you are going to become a successful trader within a short period of time. Think smart and you won’t have a tough time with this profession.
Concentrate on the edge growth
Alongside the trading, a trader will also have to concentrate on the trading edge. Everything required for the trading business comes from an edge. When a trader is not even thinking about it and maintaining the business, there will be an edge in his or her head. It is not that difficult for a trader to continue trading process without the trading edge. For your own good in this business, it is necessary to think about the trading edge. When you learn about any kind of defect in trading process, you will have to change the edge accordingly. Doing so, your trading edge will be a profound one from time to time. When a developed trading edge is used for the trading process, the profits will be glooming in your accounts. You will be able to know about trades better.
Preplan your trade setup
Just like finding the positions and estimated position sizes for trades, a trader should also plan the whole trading process through. It will help your trading business a lot with proper control over the situation. When you will be controlling the trades, no problems in the road to success will pass by your eyes without being caught. If there is any kind of problem seen in the market, immediate actions can be taken. Your trades will be safe and it won’t require any kind of random observation. So, think about that before every trade from your account.
Many people will tell you that long-term strategy is not good. If we were a fan of short-term strategy, we would have also told you. The truth in this industry is trading this market is only profitable when you know what happened with the trend in short terms. People think they have mastered the trend analyses and start trading with short-term strategy. This article will tell you why it is not good but the best and wisest method of trading. When you trade in long-term strategy, not only you save your capital but also your profit.
Day trading is very risky since the traders have to do the market analysis in the lower time frame. It’s true you will get lots trade setups in the lower time frame but filtering out the false trade setup is really hard. Unless you have extensive experience in Forex trading profession, you should never day trade the market. Always start trading in the longer time frame since it will tremendously reduce your risk exposure.
Long-term strategy gives you a wider window to analyze
The best thing about using long-term strategy is, it gives you a wider window to look at the market trend and changes. In long-term strategy, you will keep your trades open for many weeks and also even for months. This is not going to happen in short-term as you will place the trades and closes within hours. People who trade with long-term strategy know it is also good for their career. They get to have time to think about their trades. As they have more time, the market volatility also cannot hit them.
Use the price action signal
Being a long-term trader you should use the Japanese candlestick pattern. Trading CFDsis extremely easy those who know the perfect way to read candlestick charts. Instead of trading the minor support and resistance level, focus on the higher time frame data. Those who are smart always follow the conservative way of trading. As a Forex trader, you have to learn to stay on the sideline. Try to develop the habit of a sniper. You will take one shot and that shot will be your best one. Never try to win all trades. Consider the random outcome of each trade and limit your risk. Try to use the combo candlestick pattern since it will increase your winning edge. If possible use the chart pattern trading strategy along with price action confirmation signal. But always remember to trade like a conservative trader.
Volatility cannot take your profit
Many people have lost their profit when they tried to trade with short terms strategy. It is not their fault as they did not know that trading with short time tips can make them lose more money. This is the reason scalpers and day traders lose the most amount of money. They use short-term strategy and they can only keep their trades for hours. The scalpers have to close the trades almost instantly and it is a big risk in their money. If the trend changes or it becomes volatile, they will have to lose all of their money. When you are using positional trading strategy or swing trading strategy that is long term, you can be free from any worries. You know it will not do any harm to your trades as you have got plenty of times. You can leave them open for months. The short-term traders always take the first hit when the market trend changes and gets volatile. If you want to keep yourself safe from volatility, trade with a long-term strategy.
Gives you time to understand Forex trading
Trading in this industry with currency pairs also needs time to understand. People need to have time and it is the only long-term strategy that gives you the time. If you want to trade for a long time, use the long-term strategy.
There are lots of traders who know that they are not making any real progress in the Forex industry. If you look at these traders, you will find that all of them are trading the market and they are not controlling their emotions in Forex. It is a big battle that you have to win in the market if you want to trade the market for more profit. There are lots of people who do not understand this concept and thus lose a lot of money. This article will tell you how you can battle your temptation in Forex. We know you can get emotional when you are losing our money but it is all part of your trading career. This market is volatile and you cannot expect that you will make the profit every time when you place your trade. This article will tell you how you can battle your temptation in Forex when you are trading. It may seem hard but you can make it under your mind when you have known the techniques.
Emotions are often considered as the most dangerous enemy of the Forex traders. The majority of the successful traders in the United Kingdom often consider trading as a psychological challenge. You need to learn how to control the risk factors and make the consistent profit. Things are not so simple when it comes to real life trading. You have to develop a strong basic foundation and learn different Forex trading strategies to deal with the dynamic nature of this market. Being new to this industry you can take some professional course from the expert traders in the UK. Always remember when you invest money in yourself you have nothing to lose.
Build a simple system
Trading is all about managing your risk in an organized way. People in the United Kingdom are extremely concerned about their investment and they don’t want to take unnecessary risk. For this very reason, they always trade this market with a simple trading system. You might have learned many Forex trading strategies but it’s your duty to get the best things from each system to build a simple trading strategy. Always consider trading as your business to make a consistent profit.
Do not trade when you are emotional
We know that you will get emotional every time you lose the trade. That is why we are not saying that you cannot get emotional in trading. There will be times when you will feel emotional and you would want to trade the market. It is the risky time that you should not trade. In such situation, you should take a break just like the pro traders in the UK. If you feel like you are losing your money in Forex, take a breath and stop trading for a moment. It will give you the time to gasp down about the recent changes in the market.
Every trader lost money
Losing money in Forex is not going to end your lives. Every trader in this market has lost their money. This market is not easy to understand and you will also lose your money when you are a successful trader. If you can accept this reality, you will be happier with your trading. Having an impeccable trading history is not possible in Forex. You will have many loses but with consistent profit you can make money in your trades.
Take a break after every trade
Many traders trade the market without any break. This is not good and you can lose much money. After you have won some trades on the market, take a break and enjoy your success. If you have lost your money, do not trade the market. You will have a lot of time to think about your mistakes. If you start trading without the break, you will make the same mistakes and you will lose money and get emotional.
Millennials are consistently seen as reluctant investors. Some are a decade into their career, but they’re still relatively risk-averse, which many analysts believe is largely the result of the fact they grew up or came into adulthood in the midst of the Great Recession. Millennials have seen one of the worst financial environments in history, which has understandably made them gun-shy when it comes to investing, particularly in the stock market.
To combat that sense of hesitation, fintech companies have been creating platforms and technology that speak specifically to Millennials, and many of these companies have been quite successful in the process.
One of the biggest fintech trends leading the way not just for Millennials but investors in a range of age brackets is robo-investing. The premise behind robo-investing is one that Millennials tend to embrace because it’s seen as easy, inexpensive, and it gives the ability to create a set-it-and-forget strategy that requires minimal effort.
Robo-investing is also a viable alternative to the old way of doing things, which was to work with a financial advisor. Financial advisors, however, have been lumped in with many others in the financial services industry, such as bankers and lenders, and they’re not necessarily viewed in the most positive light by Millennials. Robo-investing platforms like Betterment give them the opportunity to skip the financial advisor, while still getting similar advantages, such as diversification and tax efficiency.
In the past, most investors would use services such as YAHOO! Finance to do their research and to track stocks, but there has been a new wave of trading software popping up that’s more comprehensive than ever before. Options such as Stocks to Trade, which was introduced by Millennial investment professional Timothy Sykes, is designed not just for the Wall Street elite, but is instead for real people.
These trading software platforms include some of the most varied data points available, and they give users the opportunity to see everything they could need or want to know about all of the big markets in one location.
Budgeting and Spending
When looking for strategies to invest, it’s just important to decide how you’ll allocate your assets. It’s also important to look at your investment capabilities versus your income and spending needs. That’s why budgeting apps and banking services are also an essential component of many Millennials financial and investment strategies.
Just one of the many examples is called Simple, which is essentially branchless banking where everything can be done on a mobile phone.
This helps investors and would-be investors because it has features to create specific, personalized goals, such as putting aside a certain amount of money each week to invest. It also includes a feature called “Safe-to-Spend” which lets users see how much they can spontaneously spend without sabotaging their budget and existing goals.
Finally, another big way fintech is changing the investing landscape not just for Millennials but for everyone? Peer-to-peer lending.
Peer-to-peer lending offers the opportunity for people to bypass the traditional bank environment for personal and business loans, and it gives investors the chance to look outside the stock market for investing opportunities. There is a high level of risk, particularly when it comes to investing in certain borrowers, but Millennials seem to like the concept because the potential returns are much higher than they would be with something like a high-yield savings account, and as long as funds are spread out over many loans, the level risk isn’t incredibly high.
Fintech is changing the way Millennials invest and shifting how they view the concept itself, creating not just new opportunities for investors, but new possibilities in technology as well.
Most of us were raised to believe that bankruptcy only happened to deadbeats and the financially irresponsible. We were raised to believe that bankruptcy was always someone’s fault and that it could easily be avoided. We were also taught that bankruptcy would ruin our financial prospects for most of our lives. The stereotypes we were raised to believe were wrong.
Changes have been made to bankruptcy laws that have made the process easier and something every filer should be able to overcome. In fact, the experts at San Diego bankruptcy firm, Doan Law, say bankruptcy can even improve your FICO score in most cases.
So how does bankruptcy happen?
Today one of the most common impetuses behind filing for bankruptcy is medical bills. People go through an emergency health issue and the resulting bills are too much for them. Even if the hospital is willing to work out a payment plan, the bills are often so large that there is no hope of paying them off within the patient’s lifetime.
It’s true that there are fewer medical-related bankruptcy cases filed these days. The Affordable Care Act (known colloquially as Obamacare) has made healthcare much more affordable for many. It has not, however, completely wiped medical bankruptcies out.
Other Insurance Issues
By now most of you have likely seen the insurance commercial where the agent says that unicorn stampedes are covered by the homeowner’s policy but, unfortunately, flooding is not. Accidents and emergencies that cause significant damage to a person’s home or transportation are another significant source of bankruptcy claims. This is because home and automobile insurance policies are not as strictly regulated as medical insurance companies are now.
These can happen to the best of us and, often, in spite of our better efforts. Consider the following example:
You recently got divorced and you weren’t awarded spousal support or alimony (or, worse, you have to pay it to someone else). It’s not a huge deal. With some downsizing and strict budgeting, you’re sure you can make it work. But life turns out to be slightly more expensive on your own than you had anticipated. People keep wanting you to go out to dinner or take part in other admission-required events. You find yourself pulling out your credit card more than you want to.
Before long, your card is maxed out and your utility bills are due but you can’t pay them because you were pressured into chipping in a bunch of money for a coworker’s baby shower gift. So you opt for a short term loan. The high interest is alarming, but your bank doesn’t offer loans in the small amount you need so you go with what you can get.
Then, when the loan comes due, the interest is more than you thought it would be and you wind up having to take out another payday loan to pay off the first. And then you need to open up a new line of credit to continue paying your utilities and monthly expenses while you use your salary to pay off your payday loans and your rent. And it just keeps snowballing from there.
Then you get downsized and the financial tightrope you’ve been walking gives way. Sure you could go through debt consolidation but that takes forever and you really need the fresh start--especially since most employers run credit checks as well as background checks on potential recruits these days. Bankruptcy is your only option.
This feels like one of those “that will never happen to me” kind of situations but for many it is all too familiar. Some aren’t able to simply move home or in with roommates. Some don’t have family and friends who would be willing to help bail them out.
Another Common Scenario
You made the leap into freelancing! Good for you! You track your earnings and, in spite of your best intentions, everything you earn gets paid right back out toward your rent, utilities and other necessities. And then tax time comes and you find yourself thousands of dollars in debt to your state and the federal government, so you take out a loan to pay that off. The added expense puts more pressure on you to take on more work but that is slow going (this isn’t your fault, all freelancers experience ebbs and flows). You rely on your credit too much to make ends meet and soon your credit has been exhausted and your score is tanked. You can’t get a new loan. You can’t break your current lease. What do you do?
Bankruptcy can happen to anybody at any time. It no longer carries the stigma it used to. Don’t be afraid to use this option if you need to. Better a fresh start than a lifetime of running from collectors, right?
I left Tesco happy the other day knowing that on my next shop I had a voucher for 4p through their price match promise. Though I wasn't happy, I chuckled to myself thinking about how I would spend it and questioned why Tesco had even gone to the effort?
The annoying part wasn't simply the amount, it was the way the whole process worked. Tesco had done the hard work of calculating the saving, why not simply deduct it from my total spend? If I was to buy a pack of Pringles on offer with 50% off I wouldn’t expect to see the saving on a voucher.
Instead they insist on using the 4p to make me return to Tesco on a future occasion. This you could argue is fine and a perfectly valid way to build customer loyalty however instead of simply deducting the 4p from my shopping balance on my next visit or adding it to my Club Card rewards total, I’m reliant on remembering to show the voucher at checkout.
The Club Card is a complex computer system yet it can’t automatically deduct a voucher from my shopping total when scanning my club card on checkout? You could argue that its down to my own stupidity for forgetting to use the vouchers but the point is that all of the elements to the system are already in place and Tesco is simply making the user jump through unnecessary hoops, most likely knowing that they won’t bother with that 4p voucher.
The user experience problems aren't just down to price match rewards, a range of other offers and money off vouchers have to be printed rather than being automatically deducted.
With all the struggles Tesco is going through recently it seems like such a simple change to improve the Club Card experience with users, lets hope when Morrison’s launches its loyalty scheme in the coming months that it doesn’t make the same mistakes.
With interest rates at 0.5% and most highstreet ISAs giving a similar return I've been struggling to find somewhere to save my money.
Zopa's philosophy remains unchanged, you move money into your online Zopa account, set the rates you wish to lend at and Zopa lends your money to people that need it.
When setting your rates Zopa gives you guidelines as to the market rates, these change frequently and I tend to set mine on the high end of the recommended rates. This means my money is lent our slowly however the return rates are higher.
I lend out a maximum of £10 per person hence my maximum exposure per loan is limited. Zopa has a number of markets and you can choose the rates you lend to each one (if at all) A* being the best market and B being the riskier, obviously the rates for the riskier markets are higher.
Through your loan book you can see the usernames of who you lend money to and the reasons, most are for DIY, cars or to consolidate existing debts however you do get some more entertaining ones.
If you need access to your money quickly Zopa has a rapid return facility however you lose a percentage of your earnings by using this.
My difficulty with Zopa came in trying to calculate the percent rate of return over a period of time. Therefore just over a year ago I took the decision not to add anything further into my account.
Over a year long period I could then calculate the years earning as a percent to then compare with other investments.
As a result in this time I had one unpaid load (ie bad debt), once taking this into account and the 1% Zopa fee my return was 5.56%.
Compared to high street ISA's and similar this is a good return.
About two months ago I sold my first website on Flippa.com, a site dedicated to buying and selling websites and domains. Launched earlier this year by a team from the internet resources site Sitepoint the marketplace is like Ebay for buying and selling websites.
The site I sold was www.ipodhistory.com, I originally bought the site from the Digital Point Forums about 18months earlier for $180 (£90 at the time), it was my most expensive site I had bought and was a relatively big gamble. Over the following year and a half I invested in search engine optimisation, added new content and grew a community. In this time I tripled the traffic and advertising revenue.
I listed the site on Flippa and immediately received interest and a number of offers. After around two weeks the site sold for $2000 (£1300). I was paid through PayPal and the transaction went very quickly and smoothly.
You can list sites on Flippa either with an auction style listing or where people submit private bids for a site. Flippa charge a listing fee with various optional extras (about $28 for my site) plus a final value fee of 5% (with a cap of $498).
It's sad to see the iPod History site go from my portfolio but I'm more than happy with the return on investment.