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Finstar to Invest USD150 Millon in Fintech

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London, United Kingdom

Finstar Financial Group will invest USD150 million into new financial technology startups over the next five years, Oleg Boyko, the Chairman of Finstar, has confirmed. The money will also be used for research and development (R&D) within the Group’s portfolio companies.

Global investment in financial technology startups increased to USD12.7 billion last year, according to the CB Insights Global Fintech Report 2016. Finstar is at the vanguard of this swift growth, with its global presence and wealth of experience in the sector. The pledge to invest USD150 million into fintech startups and in-house R&D is part of the Group’s wider commitment to expanding and improving its fintech offering. Finstar’s primary markets are Europe, Latin America, South-East and South Asia.

Commenting on the news, Oleg Boyko said:

“We will finance direct investment in startups, contributions to SMEs, and research and development of cutting-edge fintech within our own companies. As far as the startup component is concerned, we are targeting three to six deals per year, in the seed to Series A rounds, typically ranging from USD500,000 to USD30 million. Our R&D investment is about pushing financial technology further and leveraging that innovation across our already strong fintech portfolio. This means that – beyond our financial commitment to the sector – the businesses we work with benefit from the strength of our technical resources and the depth of our expertise.”

Over the past two years, Finstar Financial Group has started strategic cooperation with European fintech companies Spotcap, Euroloan, Viventor and Rocket10. It has also expanded its collaboration with fintech entrepreneurs through FinstarLabs. FinstarLabs focusses its efforts on developing ground-breaking fintech, adtech and big data innovations, as well as identifying, investing in, and incubating leading fintech start-ups and entrepreneurs.

In 2015, Finstar launched its own portfolio company, Digital Finance International, with the aim of applying the most advanced technological solutions to deliver tailored consumer lending solutions globally.

About Finstar 
Finstar Financial Group is an international private equity group. Founded in 1996, the Group has significant experience in launching start-ups, corporate restructuring and expansion projects. Finstar operates in the financial services, IT, consumer retail and real estate sectors. Since its foundation, Finstar has developed substantial operational experience and specializes in a value-added strategy of introducing global best practices for corporate governance, innovation and marketing to companies.

More about Finstar: http://finstar.com/.

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Business

Top 3 Mistakes To Avoid With Shopify Stores

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As everyone is well aware, building up a successful dropshipping Ecommerce business isn’t something that just happens. It takes work. Unfortunately, about 99% of people will fail with Shopify and we would like to share the top 3 mistakes to avoid with Shopify. Let’s break down the top 3 mistakes so that you don’t become a part of that statistic.

1. Preparing For Failure From Day 1

A large portion of your success comes down to the approach you have when starting. Let’s be honest, starting your own company isn’t necessarily easy. But if you go into this process only focused on, “How long until I make money or get a positive *ROI?” then your mindset isn’t where it needs to be. You need to be going on this journey with an open-minded approach. Learning should be your leading focus, while money is the peripheral issue.
If you’re not failing, you’re not innovating. The average entrepreneur fails 3 times before achieving success. You shouldn’t expect to make sales from your first promotions. If you do then great, but as long as you don’t expect it you won’t be disappointed. If you become disappointed then your motivation will drop and you won’t be as optimistic as before.

2. Focus Ratio

For obvious reasons, people like to focus on the tasks that are easier to do. You would be surprised at just how big a mistake this can be for Shopify store owners.

Building the online store is often seen as an easier aspect, whereas getting customers to actually purchase is a bit more difficult.

Below is a simplified breakdown of what your time ratio should look like broken between sales, hot products, and store optimization.
• 50% on Sales: This includes launching new Facebook ads, looking at your Google analytics, and understanding your data.
25% on Hot Products: This focuses on assessing demand and ultimately finding a unique product that will keep customers’ attention.
• 25% on Store Optimization: This is where many people spend 80% of their time, which isn’t necessary. Apps like Timerly and RocketMessage make store optimization a much quicker and easier process.

3. Not Selling Hot Products

Unfortunately, this is extremely common. Even if you’re unsuccessful with sales, make sure that you’re successful with understanding your data and how the market works. Most people that fail with selling products on their Shopify store use their own emotions to make decisions on whether they should sell one product over another one when the truth is that the market is the only entity that can decide this.

We built HotProducts.io platform to help dropshippers achieve more success by sourcing the best selling products on the market and using a team of extremely qualified product researchers to provide hot products to our members every day for every niche.

For any entrepreneur, you will have a larger number of failures than winners. But if someone else can start a successful business, then so can you. No sustainable and scalable business is built overnight. Failing is not quitting, but quitting is failing. Continue learning, understand those successful marketing strategies, all while keeping a healthy mindset so that you can become a part of that successful 1%.

*ROI = Return on Investment

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Business

10 Advertising Trends that Ruled the Industry in 2017

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Advertising Trends

Financial downturn dependably shakes up the advertising business.

Restricted ad spending plans look out the most financially savvy media channels and demand all the more value for their money.

While the Internet has fared superior to anything TV, radio and print, the progressions that are occurring today will change the substance of online advertising until the end of time.

Everybody required with online business needs to comprehend what is going on or they'll be left on the platform after the prepare has left the station.

1. Publishers in Quiet, But Deadly War, With Ad Agencies

Publishers need to pitch their inventory to the most elevated bidder. They need to push their normal ad rates up by offering the nature of their audiences. They need to alter the course of print dollars, digital dimes.

Ad agencies need to demonstrate their incentive to their customers, the enormous advertisers, by paying for ads based on the esteem they convey. This will bring about paying more for some ad space, yet less for a large portion of it.

  • The publishers control access to the audience.
  • The ad agencies control access to the ad spending plans.
  • Who will flicker first?
  • This fight is the background to a large number of alternate Trends.

 

2. Big Online Publishers Take Ad Sales Inhouse

The major online publishers (MySpace, AOL, TMZ, Time Warner) are bringing ad sales back in-house following frustrating results from the ad networks (Advertising.com, Microsoft Advertising, Adjug, Adconian, and so forth). Ad networks now have the notoriety for going for amount as opposed to quality, and in spite of advanced behavioral investigation instruments, navigate rates have kept on falling underneath 0.1 for each penny.

3. Ad Networks Will Decline

As a greater amount of the enormous publishers dismiss the ad networks the expansive influence will imply that more medium size and small publishers will scrutinize the esteem they are giving. The outcome will be the ad networks will enter a winding of decline.

4. Ads Get Bigger and More Intrusive

Ad networks, which are generally keep running by individuals with traditional advertising backgrounds, are reacting to their declining fortunes by making greater and more intrusive ads. Fortune.com has had a full screen, "over-the-page" ad that covers their homepage for quite a while, yet now even sites like Techcrunch are trialing them. Aside from spam emails, there is no other adverting group that bothers and pesters Internet clients more. Ideally this is a passing Trend, once publishers and advertisers realize that irritating their audience is no real way to build a brand.

5. Advertising Dollars Seep into The Long Tail

Advertisers keep on looking for methods for getting to their objective market through smaller authority websites. The ROI is vastly improved from these sites, yet there is a higher overhead overseeing sales to smaller sites. The business is concocting arrangements however to address this market in a financially savvy way.

6. Aggregation and Optimization

To empower advertisers to achieve smaller sites and to empower smaller publishers to get ad incomes from the greatest advertisers there is a Trend to total ads and sites and after that consequently serve the ads based on a real-time sell off process. This bodes well to advertisers and publishers, yet side-lines delegates like the ad agencies.

The two sorts of organization filling this need are the ad exchanges, as DoubleClick Ad Exchange and AdvertiseSpace and the ad income optimization services, similar to Rubicon Project and PubMatic. The two gatherings are centred around amassing advertisers and publishers and serving the best ad into the best site based on a real-time closeout to build up a reasonable cost.

The Trend of aggregation and optimization will proceed.

7. Ad Agencies Fight Back with Demand Side Platforms

In light of their falling impact, ad agencies are grouping together to make complex ad serving platforms which have turned out to be known as Demand Side Platforms.

The objective of these services is to accurately quantify the arrival on speculation of every ad and afterward pay as needs be. For instance, if an ad on a landing page is clicked and is followed direct to a deal it would have a high esteem. An ad served on a news page that isn't clicked would have a low esteem. While this appears to give a legitimate method to value ads, publishers contend that it commoditises their content, site and audience and wipes out the delicate advantages of brand building.

8. Social Media Advertising

The huge online networking sites are under developing strain to realize their potential by discovering ad serving arrangements which don't outrage their clients while giving great results to advertisers. Experimentation on services like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and MySpace will proceed.

9. Advertising Will Go Mobile on Via Smartphones and Apps

The cell phone companies have attempted to discover a method for contacting their mobile audience with ads. SMS has bombed hopelessly in light of the fact that it is excessively intrusive. Presently the iPhone and Android phones have at long last opened up this new frontier. Smartphones and apps give dozens of approaches to serve ads to mobile clients in ways which give their customers real esteem e.g. location based rebate vouchers. Google's securing of Admob for $750m and Apple's obtaining of Quattro Wireless for $275m, both mobile advertising companies, recommend the mobile ad attack is going to begin vigorously.

 10. Advertisers Go Direct

Enormous brands have realized the capability of the web to empower them to build a relationship coordinate with their customers, or at any rate, do things online which emphatically represent their brand. These associations are putting marketing funds into making apps, Twittering, building web services, and so forth. On the off chance that these exercises are effective, a greater amount of their ad spending plan could be doled out to coordinate online exercises.

Summary:

These are extremely fascinating times in the online advertising world. There are a ton of turf wars, experimentation, and new services developing. Publishers need to discover a method for increasing ad income, ad agencies need to demonstrate they add esteem and advertisers need to guarantee they are getting increasing ROI on their spend in an ever noisier marketplace.

These are intriguing times with numerous open doors and dangers to all gatherings. The nimble will prosper, the moderate will come up short.

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Blogging

How to Engage Your Website Visitors With Customized Messages

Setting up personalized messages that target the visitors to your website is a smart move. By reaching out to them, you will stand out as a brand that takes care of the experience of its visitors and wants to provide them with as much assistance as possible.

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Customer engagement may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you hear about chat, but chat has become a critical communication tool today.

Companies are now using live chat in proactive ways to approach customers and offer help while they are browsing their website. It works similarly to a sales assistant at the store – once the customer enters a shop, they will always be greeted and asked whether they need help.

That way, customers know that they can reach out to the sales assistant if they have any questions. Moreover, after the customer spends some time in the store, it is natural to offer assistance because they might need help and are more likely to accept it.

That's how chat works on websites.

Chat applications allow organizations to make the most of the information about customer behavior, geographical location, or the page they are visiting to start a contextualized conversation that brings results. If used skillfully by a well-trained team, chat applications may help you create extremely positive relationship with your customers, and see more and more of potential customers coming to your website.

Here are some excellent reasons why you need a customized chat on your website:

  • Higher conversion – customized greetings that start chats with visitors help to engage and convert them. Visitors invited to chat are 3 times more likely to turn into customers. 61% of these customers will convert within the first chat.

  • You can follow the customer journey and offer contextual help without having to observe customers' behavior all the time – smart chats apps offer sophisticated website monitoring features and constantly analyze visitor information to help create messages that are relevant and contextualized. Even if you're not in front of your computer, you can be sure that customers will be greeted and offered help.

  • Customized messages deliver personalized help that brings higher customer satisfaction – personalized greetings for customers that directly relate to their previous actions on your website or information you have about them work wonders.

Now that you know why customized messages are so important for your website's user experience, here are some examples of messages you can use to start chatting with your visitors.

Starting a conversation

Companies usually start their work with customized messages by setting up automated greetings that start a chat with visitors. In most cases, such greetings are displayed after a visitor spends around 30 seconds on a website.

But to make the most of these automated messages, it's a good idea to greet visitors at the right moment with a message that relates to what they are viewing on the website. That way, you will encourage them to start chatting with you.

For example, visitors who are looking through your product pages could receive the following greeting: 'Do you see anything you like? We're here for you if you've got any questions about our products.'

Another good occasion to start a chat is when you notice that the customer spends time on your website without taking any action. Start chatting with them in real time to see whether they need any extra information or help with placing the order. By initiating the chat, you will be helping them start the conversation.

Start chatting on the pricing page

Visitors who spend a lot of time on your pricing page might be considering a purchase, but they're not sure which option is best for them. If they abandon your page at this time, the chances are high that they will never come back.

That's why you should reach out to them at this moment and help solve their doubts. Otherwise, you will be missing out on an important opportunity for conversion. All it takes is sending a message like 'Hello, please let me know whether you've got any questions about our pricing.'

Get the chat going on contact pages

It makes sense that customers who open your 'Contact us' page wants to get in touch with you. So why not reach out to them first? You can set up a message like 'Hello, you can always reach out to us in this chat if you prefer typing to talking on the phone.' That type of greeting will pay off in more exceptional user experience on your website.

Here's how to engage returning visitors

Another important use of customized messages is for re-engaging visitors who are returning to your website, essential for customer retention. That type of greeting will help visitors to remember you and engage with your brand better.

You can write a message like ' Hello, welcome back to our website. If you got any questions, we are here for you.' If you notice that the customer visits the same page with a specific product, you can create an even more creative and personalized message, for example: 'Still not sure whether this product works for you? Drop us a line here; we'll be happy to help you out.'

Use messages to reduce cart abandonment

If you run an online store, cart abandonment is probably one of the most severe problems you encounter. Customized messages help to reduce the cart abandonment rate significantly. All it takes is starting a chat and offering guidance to visitors throughout the process of placing an order or filling out a form. By reaching out to them, you will motivate visitors to complete the process or offer them a convenient place to ask further questions before they finish their task.

Setting up personalized messages that target the visitors to your website is a smart move. By reaching out to them, you will stand out as a brand that takes care of the experience of its visitors and wants to provide them with as much assistance as possible.

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