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Stand-alone website an important component but needs to be aligned with other forms of partnerships/marketing for viable revenue stream

Once you have your website filled with relevant contents/images/videos/extensions/SMO or Social Media Optimization in terms of Facebook profile/Twitter handle, you have a product to start with which you can now monetize. If yours is a content website (online publishing), direct selling or reference could mean visiting personally to raise a subscription for ads. You can raise subscriptions for advertising on your website or align with manufacturers whose products you plan to sell. You can now visit an office, offer them a download of a free software product link of which included on your website, and request them to subscribe to your newsletter in favor. Next, you refer them products that you are entitled to advertise as publisher and earn a commission (with the likes of AmazonCommission Junction) on sales through your newsletter as part of email marketing and personal interaction the next time you have an appointment with. Read More …

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How to save one-month rent while looking for new office to rent and why young professionals should opt for a rented home instead of buying a new property

You are looking for a new premise on rent for your small business. You understand that buying an office is a costly affair and means blocking a substantial portion of liquid cash which could otherwise be used for meeting other pressing needs of your business. Your need is urgent, and you want to accomplish your objective with minimal of cost. One strategy that you can pursue is to visit online property portals that are popular in your country, city and make searches that exclude brokers. For instance, you are fresh in Kolkata and want to rent an office within a week or two. Not a problem. Choose Google search engine by typing (if you are from Australia, you type By default, Google opts the result for your region by itself and so you need not worry. You can just type on the browser address bar. Next, type keywords like property portal, rent, office space, Kolkata. You can obviously try other keywords based on your imagination and requirements. Read More …

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Outsourcing: Where to stop?

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Debate regarding life insurance agents restricted to sell insurance policies of only one insurance company

In India, Insurance Regulatory Development Authority is the government body regulating the insurance market. Included in the role is “specifying requisite qualifications, code of conduct and practical training for intermediary or insurance intermediaries and agents.”

Current regulations by IRDA restrict individuals to act as agent for only one life insurance company at a time (exclusivity clause). This may appear surprising keeping in mind that one of the goals of IRDA is “promoting efficiency in the conduct of insurance business.” If agents are allowed to sell policies of different companies, they can compare different products and suggest ones which they think serve the interest of a client best. Read More …

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How investing in bank stocks different from the rest?

The business of banking falls under priority services and all banks whether public or private in India need to comply with stringent guidelines by the RBI. While NPAs (nonperforming assets) are part of their businesses, there is a limit set by RBI as part of good governance. New banks are allowed to float only after they demonstrate they are here for a long run. Read More …

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Term plan versus pure endowment plan and insurance-cum-investment products in between

Life insurance products are designed for lifestyle protection, children and retirement fund planning, while income tax rebate induces individuals to buy insurance policies. From an operations research (OR) perspective, there is a given insurance cover for which tax savings, sum assured (survival benefit or death benefit), return on investment is maximized given your age, current and projected yearly income and expenditure, and no. of dependents. Read More …

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4 things to define in project report when it comes to value creation and how online marketplaces like Amazon fare

When starting a new business, a project report (also called business plan) that analyses among other things prevailing market condition, investments required in short-term and long-term, and anticipated risks is crucial. Here are the four things to define while preparing project report for your business when it comes to value creation:

  1. What value your business intends to provide.
  2. To whom your business seeks to provide this value.
  3. What resources/partnerships your business can mobilize to provide the value.
  4. How your business will produce added value.  Read More …
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Relevance of face-to-face marketing for life insurance agents in India

Like many other businesses before the advent of the internet, face-to-face contact was considered essential in selling a product and insurance is no exception with agents bringing a bulk of business for an insurance company. Now, at a time when direct sale of insurance policies by visiting the website of an insurance company or use of comparison websites is picking up because of the internet that eliminates intermediaries like agents, the role of agents, especially in cities and towns with audience comfortable using PC, is redefined. It can no longer be offering and collecting data from clients which can be done by clients themselves through online means. The challenge for agents here is to provide more value-added services by including insurance as part of complete financial planning. Read More …

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Direct plan in mutual fund: Time for distributors to adapt by leveraging content sharing and adding new services

Direct plan in mutual fund means investors can directly invest in mutual fund schemes without involving distributors or mutual fund brokers through AMC website. Because of no distribution fees or trail fees paid to mutual fund brokers for such mutual fund schemes, expense ratio would be lower as compared to regular plans (investing through distributors/mutual fund brokers) thereby giving investors higher returns (0.5% to 1.5% p.a. depending upon the AMC expense ratio) compared to regular plans. Read More …

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Accounting and career prospects

For an individual or family, it is pertinent to know how much is spent on overheads like food, home rent, and traveling (taught as part of the home science curriculum, popular among girls to-be-future housewives). For a business house, similar overheads can be catering, office rent, and business travel. The big difference between accounting records kept by an individual or family and a business house is that business house and proprietor of the business house are two distinct entities: money invested by the proprietor is kind of a loan received by the business house (termed capital) from proprietor to be returned back. Otherwise, whether it is accounting for a small internet cafe or a large multinational company, the basic concept remains the same while denomination changes from bookkeeping to accounting. Read More …