Small Business
Top stories summarized by our editors
9/21/2017

"Making small tweaks to your website can often result in big conversion gains," write Thomas Smale, and he offers five strategies to optimize a company's web presence. The best use of available software and the display of reviews and testimonials are among Smale's recommendations.

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Entrepreneur online
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Thomas Smale
9/21/2017

The Federal Reserve will begin reducing its $4.2 trillion US treasury bond and mortgage-backed security portfolio in October. The Fed will reduce its reinvestments in the portfolio by up to $10 billion each month.

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BBC
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Federal Reserve, US
9/21/2017

Fifty-nine percent of small businesses offered health coverage in 2012, but that proportion is now down to 50%, a Kaiser Family Foundation survey has found. Some businesses say price hikes have made it difficult to keep offering the benefit.

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The Associated Press
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Kaiser Family Foundation
9/21/2017

The subscription dog-food service YaDoggie relies on shipping algorithms and data about its customers' dogs to deliver new bags of food just before pet owners run out. The company is also introducing a Bluetooth-enabled "smart scoop" device that uses color-coded signals to help owners keep track of meal times and avoid overfeeding.

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Fortune
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pet food, YaDoggie
9/21/2017

Quality trumps quantity in sales, so having quality conversations with leads is more important than making more phone calls or working more leads, writes Stephanie Chung. Also, even experienced sales reps should be willing to use scripted verbiage at appropriate times to guide presentations or discuss the value of products.

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Inc. online
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Stephanie Chung
9/21/2017

An effective sales strategy always involves a thorough understanding of what your customers do, writes John Staples. This understanding allows you to see the value of your product through the customer's eyes and take steps to separate your offerings from those of the competition.

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Sales Benchmark Index
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John Staples
9/21/2017

Sales managers have long found freeware such as Google Calendar and Skype as valuable tools to help keep staff members on track, writes Vicky Law. Managers can also use other, lesser-known freeware to boost sales performance, including Trello, a virtual whiteboard where tasks can be assigned, updated and tracked.

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HuffPost
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Vicky Law, Skype, Google, Trello
9/21/2017

The connection may not appear obvious, but Varidesk CEO Jason McCann is quick to credit his company's success and engaged consumers to the care it devotes to its employees. In Varidesk's case, care comes naturally, as its product, which allows desk-bound employees to stand, is directly related to worker health, which pays off with gains in productivity from a healthier workforce.

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Forbes
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Varidesk, Varidesk
9/21/2017

Podcasts can be a good way to stay knowledgeable about developments in the business world, and this article singles out five podcasts that may help.

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Business News Daily
9/21/2017

Concrete Camouflage offers only a few products and caters to "people who are designing or remodeling their concrete floors and exterior concrete," CEO Earl Choate said. Creating a series of how-to videos on YouTube saved the company from having to answer repetitive questions and also helped boost sales, he said.

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Small Business Trends
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YouTube