Retailing – some home truths!

The 5 biggest retail mark-ups

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Rhian Nicholson, 16:20, Wednesday 8 June 2011

 

There are some products we pay ridiculously inflated prices on either because the retailers have us over a barrel or we’re looking to treat ourselves regardless of the cost.

While manufacturers set the basic price — and often line their pockets handsomely in the process — retailers add substantial mark-ups to ensure their own profit margins remain high.

Indeed, the hefty mark-ups on goods from our morning coffee to a £1,000 diamond ring can make the prices that we pay at the convenience store, which are generally 20% higher than those in the supermarket, pale into insignificance.

Here are some of the worst offenders:

Bottled water — as much as 2,000% mark up

It’s one of the great convenience cons; paying pounds for something we can get out of the tap for next to nothing.

We drink over 2 billion litres of bottled water a year whether grabbing bottles on the run or because we believe it’s better for us than tap water.  In fact, it’s now so popular that it became part of the UK’s “typical shopping basket”.

Bottled water can cost anything from 16p for two litres at Tesco to around $50 for a 750ml bottle of Bling H2O — which at least comes in limited edition bottles with hand-applied Swarovski crystal. So, 1,000 litres of water from the tap would cost you around £1 rising to £80 for the equivalent amount of Tesco Value water and £62,500 for Bling h2o drinkers. The retail mark-up can be anything from 50% around 2000% depending on the product you buy and where you buy it from.

Manufacturers, who spend around 90% of the total cost of producing bottled water on packaging, transporting and marketing bottled water, still enjoy average profit margins of around 30%. However, Coca-Cola took its quest for profits a step too far in 2004 after it emerged its highly marketed Dasani product was little more than treated mains water from Thames Water in Sidcup.

Half a litre cost of this “purified” water cost around 95p during the five weeks it was on shop shelves before it was discontinued in the UK following a contamination scare. In contrast, half a litre of tap water sets you back just 0.05p, giving Dasani a mark up of around 2,000%. Then there’s the irony that it actually takes around three litres of water to produce a one litre bottle.

If tap water’s not to your taste, an under-the-sink water filter is a much cheaper and more environmentally friendly alternative to buying bottled. Carbon filters get rid of bad taste and smell while water softener filters remove the heavy minerals responsible for limescale build-up.

[See alsoIs water a better earner than gold?]

Coffee — 1,250% mark up

Your daily caffeine fix from your local coffee shop is an increasingly pricey luxury. It’s no surprise that the actual cost of producing the drink is minimal compared to the £2.50 price tag. Baristas get around 140 espresso shots out of a 1kg bag of coffee which can be bought for around £10 – making the cost of each shot around 7p.

The milk to make lattes or cappuccinos usually works out to cost around 10p with take out cups and sugar bringing the cost to around 20p. A whopping 1,250% mark up on the cost price.

However, this huge profit margin is quickly gobbled up by staffing costs, rent, and other operating costs such as custom charges. Bulk coffee prices have also risen to top $3 a pound for the first time in 34 years with high-quality beans Arabica beans from Colombia and Central America suffering from two seasons of poor harvests.

The sugar, cocoa and dairy markets have also been volatile. Meanwhile the rising popularity of coffee in China, Brazil and India has stretched supplies.

Fortunately for coffee drinkers the fluctuating price of coffee accounts for around 2% of the total cost but this hasn’t stopped some retailers from raising their prices. In the US, Starbucks started charging more for ‘labour intensive’ drinks at the end of last year.

While the price of coffee in supermarkets has risen in response to the tougher market conditions, it can still work out significantly cheaper to invest in a good quality coffee machine or cafetiere and a thermos flask. Switching to tea may be a more wallet friendly alternative but the mark-ups are just as bad with tea bags costing less than 1p each at wholesale prices.

Clothes — up to 700% mark up

High street retailers specialising in fast fashion go for the low profit margin/high volume approach to keep up with the voracious appetite of the clothing conscious bargain hunters.

Most mark-up their clothing lines by around 50% with lower gross margins of between 10% and 30% on basic tops rising to around 70% for jewellery. Smaller boutiques and the top end of the high street have a higher mark-up because they sell fewer items with shoppers willing to pay more for better cut pieces, better quality fabrics and fewer pieces in circulation.

Recent reports suggest that the £175 Reiss dress that Kate Middleton wore to meet President Obama actually cost £15 to manufacture.

Stitching a well known brand name onto a generic item of clothing is an easy way to inflate its value by as much as 500% – think T-shirts, sports wear and shirts. The $54 billion global denim industry is also notorious for huge mark-ups of as much as 300% with shoppers prepared to spend big for the perfect fit.

Replica football shirts are a big moneyspinner with 80% of those sold in the UK made in the Far East for around £5. The factory then sends them onto the sportswear companies at around a 50% mark-up. They in turn mark them up by another 100% and sell them onto the retailers for around £14. The retailers add their own mark-up of at least 150% to bring the price tag up to the recommended retail price of at least £35. That’s 700% more than the manufacture cost.

Shirt manufacturers have hit the headlines in the past for restricting supplies to a few selected sports chains to keep prices high. Supermarket chain Asda clashed with sportswear group Umbro after it wanted to sell England shirts for half the recommended retail price and was forced to source its stock from middlemen in Europe.

Glasses — 400% mark up

We spend a small fortune on getting the right glasses but only a tiny proportion of this actually pays for the lenses and frames. More than 32 million people in the UK wear glasses and the majority of these — around 21 million — buy their optical goods from where they have their eye examination despite being under no obligation to do so, according to Mintel.

High street giants such as Boots, Dolland & Aitchison, Specsavers and Vision Express can therefore get away with charging mark-ups of at least 400% even on their budget ranges to help cover the costs of expensive equipment for eye tests, high profile advertising campaigns and high rents. Standard lenses and frames can cost as little as £4 to make, rising to around £7 for those with more complex prescriptions.

In recent years  internet retailers have burst onto the scene with the likes of glassdirect.co.uk, best4glasses.co.uk and glasses2you.co.uk all passing on the savings of much lower overheads directly to consumers with straightforward prescriptions. Selectspecs even has a recession busting range of glasses from £5 including free scratch-resistant, full UV-protection and anti-reflection treatment. The internet is also the best place to shop around for accessories such as clip-ons and cases.

Furniture — 400% mark up (before the sales)

Even in the never-ending stream of furniture sales we still usually end up paying at least double the wholesale cost. Retailers buying in bulk have a certain amount of purchasing power but they also have substantial costs to pay including warehouse inventory and a showroom, wages and commission for their staff not to mention all the television and newspaper adverts.

The trick to staying profitable while making it seem like your customers are getting a bargain is all in the sales strategy. Retailers are skilled at marking up their wares by at least 400% on the price they paid and putting these ‘full price’ goods at the back of the store.

After 28 days these can legally be heavily discounted by as much as 50% the first time round with further reductions of another 50% in the following weeks. This gives the impression that it’s an amazing bargain but in reality the retailer still sells the product at a 100% mark-up on the wholesale costs.

[See alsoThe things that are always on sale]

Jewellery — 300% mark up

Quality usually comes at a price — and to the uneducated jewellery buyer, the bigger the price tag the greater the piece’s perceived value. In fact, the mark-up on all that glitters can be anywhere between 100% and 1,000% depending on where you buy and how good your negotiating skills are.

However, the standard increase is 300%, known in the business as a triple key mark-up. As jewellers sell only a small number of items they need a decent profit just to stay in business. Overhead costs such as rent, security, holding inventory and staff wages are expensive and many also spend a sizeable amount of cash on advertising.

Specialist online retailers have significantly lower overheads and can offer much cheaper prices for comparable products than high street stores. It could also be worth browsing the UK’s jewellery quarters such as Hatton Garden in London or the Birmingham Jewellery Quarter. As a general rule of thumb, a good haggler should be able to get around 20% off the price.

If you’re buying diamonds or other precious stones than always make sure they are properly certified in case you have to sell them in the future. Self-certified certificates from the retailer can be useless so make sure it has been issued by a reputable independent laboratory such as the Hoge Raad voor Diamant or the Gemmological Institute of America.

 

91 comments


  • kerry
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    Kerry 3 minutes ago Report Abuse

    I’m surprised popcorn isn’t on that list. I buy popping corn, even at sainsbury’s it only 51p, and it makes loads, and it’s fun to make. I don’t understand how they can charge so much for it.

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  • highland girl
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    Highland Girl 3 minutes ago Report Abuse

    I wanted to add that I think a lot of people are lazy and pay more for the frozen or pre-packed food rather they cook it fresh for thermselves

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  • Jimross
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    Jimross 3 minutes ago Report Abuse

    None of this is a surprise. Supermarkets have been robbing their customers for years. The worst is Tesco where you will find buying the big family pack actually works out more expensive than smaller packets. We have brought this all on ourselves because the British public is too lazy to do anything . Why would anyone buy a packet of washed and sliced carrots at twice the price of loose carrots that have no taste whatsoever,and any goodness has evaporated. The reason for this is we are bone idle to do anything for ourselves. The Great Lazy British Public.

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  • A Yahoo! user
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    A Yahoo! User 4 minutes ago Report Abuse

    I worked for a cinema where the cost price for water was 12.5 p and the cinema sold it for a pound. all the other stuff had reasonable mark ups. I think they choose a pound because the cool drink like coke which cost price was much higher also sold for a pound and water was their best seller

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  • highland girl
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    Highland Girl 4 minutes ago Report Abuse

    I live on an Island so everything from food to our oil for heating has to come by ferry and for that we have to pay an “Island Tax” to cover the costs, so we have no choice
    When I lived in London I always went to the markets near closing time to buy my fruit and veg and they almost gave it away.
    likewise chicken is cheap and pasta and with imagination you can come up with good meals

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  • Hesperus
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    Hesperus 5 minutes ago Report Abuse

    How about why?
    A lot of these huge mark-ups are to compensate for items that are not really worth stocking when one takes into account overheads.
    Cigarettes for instance gross about 4% which doesn’t cover the cost of selling them.

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  • A and A
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    A And A 6 minutes ago Report Abuse

    for glasses and dentures go to your local technician (optical or dental) and have them made for you for a fraction of the price that the optician or dentist will charge (guess where they get them made – same place!) BUT don’t go to a High Street business such as v*s**n*xpr*ss – their staff are under instruction to get the new specs out in an hour whether they are correct or not.

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  • JON
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    JON 6 minutes ago Report Abuse

    Many people are obsessed with having something better than other folk, so they are willing to pay through the nose. It really is pathetic !
    If that’s where their level of intelligence takes them – then they deserve to be ripped off !

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  • David
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    David 8 minutes ago Report Abuse

    What about computer printer ink cartridges? They’ve got to be the biggest con going!!

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  • bunchie
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    Bunchie 9 minutes ago Report Abuse

    Doesn’t surprise me at all. I do most of the weekly shopping at Morrisons and I have noticed that while they are advertising that they are ‘crunching’ 1,000s of prices, they are raising many others. Example: Drench water, shot up from 99p to 1.29p. Morrisons value baby wipes up from 17p to 35p. and many more. Their markup becomes obvious when you compare the prices in B & M Bargains and Home Bargains with those in Morrisons. Sadly, they don’t sell everything we need though. Here are things I NEVER buy in Morrisons: tea, coffee, sugar, biscuits, eggs, bleach, washing up liquid, washing machine soap, fabric softener, tinned tuna and tinned salmon, sandwich paste, olive oil, cooking oil and other items that I can find for a fraction of the price elsewhere.

    Reply

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I’m Back……….

Back at last and ready to post. After a long period without a laptop and no access to something on a permanent basis, I now have a Macbook and I’m rearing to go. come and join me………………..

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Best Films of the Last 10 years? Lou Gaul’s choice of 10 best action films!

The Departed, Monahan's second produced screenplayImage via Wikipedia


Best films of the last decade range from ‘Avatar’ to ‘Pan’s Labyrinth

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Burlington County Times

New Year’s Day has come and gone and a new decade has begun.Before saying a final farewell to the last 10 years, here’s an alphabetical list of the 10 live-action films I feel had great impact between 2000 and 2009.Summing up the output of a 10 period is always a challenge and a joy. I don’t pretend to present this as the definitive list, but here is a handful of films that I believe will have lasting importance:“Avatar”: Although I didn’t put James Cameron’s epic on my top-10 films of 2009 list, the visually staggering work belongs on a list of the most important films of the decade due to its groundbreaking effects. With his $220 million-plus budget, the Oscar-winning filmmaker (“Titanic”) took us where no man has gone before in terms of visuals.Like it or not, “Avatar” — with its immersive 3-D and computer-created characters — points the direction in which cinema will be going in the future. Some (including me) may argue that “Avatar” lacks a story with an ounce of originality and that the images echo those of video games, but that doesn’t matter.Movie fans are flooding theaters to take Cameron’s unforgettable journey to a galaxy far, far away.It’s a mind-bending visual trip that has left audience members wanting more and cemented Cameron’s position as king of the film world. (2009; rated PG-13)“Brokeback Mountain”: In director Ang Lee’s groundbreaking tale, the late Heath Ledger (“The Dark Knight’’) and Jake Gyllenhaal (“Jarhead’’) play two ranch hands who fall for each other while herding sheep through the mountains and then hide their relationship.The men continue to meet over two decades despite the fact that both marry, have families, and exist in narrow worlds where being involved in a gay relationship would destroy their lives.Based on the short story by Annie Proulx, the film is an important adult work punctuated by strong performances and complex emotions.It’s too bad the members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences failed to name it best picture (the minor ensemble film “Crash” won instead), though Lee did win best director. That slight by the academy won’t prevent people from viewing this heartfelt picture for many years to come. (2005; rated R)“The Dark Knight”: Batman (Christian Bale of “The Prestige”) challenges his most dangerous enemy, the Joker (the late Heath Ledger), in director Christopher Nolan’s inspired sequel to “Batman Begins” (2005).In the hands of Nolan, the psychotic Joker, played with fearless and frightening glee under smeared clown makeup by Ledger, is more of a terrorist than a supervillain. He soon turns Gotham City into a war zone and takes no prisoners in this compelling $180 million production.The villain’s chaos theory, especially in these dangerous times, chills a viewer to the bone while the film elevates comic-book-based entertainment to the level of an art film. (2008; Rated PG-13)“The Departed”: Director Martin Scorsese (“Raging Bull”), who won a well-deserved Oscar for this work, gathered a dream cast — including Jack Nicholson (“As Good as It Gets’’), Leonardo DiCaprio (“Titanic’’), Matt Damon (the “Bourne” franchise) and Mark Wahlberg (“Boogie Nights’’) — for this gritty Boston-set crime drama. In the picture, government officials are trying to infiltrate the Irish mob with an undercover officer while a gang kingpin is attempting to plant one of his underlings in the state police.As usual, Scorsese pulls no punches in a tale that uses corruption as a metaphor for urban political decay and how it proves the ultimate lethal weapon. (2006; rated R)“Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind”: In the cinematic universe of this quirky and insightful film, directed by French filmmaker Michel Gondry (“Be Kind Rewind”), people can be like pencils. Thanks to a questionable medical procedure, each person can have his or her own eraser to wipe away the memory of any mistakes — particularly messy romantic ones — from the past.Jim Carrey (“Disney’s A Christmas Carol”) plays a tightly wound guy who undergoes the operation to forget a free-spirited woman (Kate Winslet of “The Reader’’) and then comes to understand the precious nature of memories.Charlie Kaufman, whose writing credits include the offbeat favorites “Being John Malkovich’’ and “Adaptation,’’ penned the screenplay and created an inventive and decidedly different cinematic work.Ultimately, the film suggests that emotional traumas and challenges define us and make life worth living and that by removing them, we cheat ourselves of meaningful — if sometimes painful — life experiences. (2004; rated R)“Kill Bill, Vol. 1” and “Kill Bill, Vol. 2”: Incredibly talented movie-geek-filmmaker Quentin Tarantino, whose credits include “Reservoir Dogs,” “Pulp Fiction,” “Jackie Brown,” “Death Proof” and, most recently, “Inglourious Basterds,” had been planning this dazzling revenge tale for years.Tarantino redefines the action genre with this dialogue-driven doublebill fueled by visually striking battles (including one in which Uma Thurman wears a yellow jumpsuit in tribute to the late, great Bruce Lee in “Game of Death”), cool villains, feminist sensibilities, anime influences and echoes of exploitation films. (It was originally planned as one film, but, excited by the striking look of the $57 million production, which was shot mainly in China, the executives at Miramax Films jumped at the opportunity to turn the 200 minutes of footage into two films.)The basic plot follows a mysterious character named The Bride (Thurman), a deadly samurai sword-wielding assassin. She’s shot on her wedding day, goes into a coma, and then awakens hungry for revenge against a mobster named Bill (David Carradine, in a role originally designed for Warren Beatty, who — to his great regret, no doubt — passed).For fans of martial-arts movies and such fare, the “Kill Bill” installments marked the dawn of a new day in action cinema. (2003 and 2004; rated R)“The Lord of the Rings Trilogy: The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers and The Return of the King”: New Zealand director Peter Jackson took one of the biggest gambles and challenging assignments in Hollywood’s history with his massive adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien’s Middle Earth trilogy.New Line Cinema entrusted him with more than $300 million to make all three installments in a row. If the first one failed, the trilogy — as well as New Line Cinema — was doomed, but happily, Jackson understood the material.He knew how to put the complicated story — in which Frodo Baggins (Elijah Wood of “Sin City’’) and his Hobbit friends are joined by human warriors, brave elves, and battle-ready dwarves to wage a battle against dark forces for control of Middle Earth — on the screen. The theme of people of different races and backgrounds working together to defeat a common evil threat certainly has a timely  element in today’s world.James Cameron has credited Jackson with inspiring him to move forward with “Avatar.” He did that after seeing Jackson’s computer-animated character, Gollum, in the trilogy.The last installment was rightfully crowned with well-deserved Oscars for best picture and director. (2001, 2002, 2003; rated PG-13)“Million Dollar Baby”: At an age when most people are giving up their jobs, retiring and working on their golf scores, Clint Eastwood, who was 74 when directing “Million Dollar Baby,” was at the top of his game.With this striking picture, which is structured like a father-daughter story, Eastwood uses his no-nonsense filmmaking style to tell the story of a poor young woman (Hilary Swank of “Boys Don’t Cry’’) who dreams of going the distance in the boxing ring and the veteran coach who guides her. Eastwood never took a simplistic “Rocky’’-like approach to the material.Thanks to terrific performances by Morgan Freeman (who plays an aging boxer with a pragmatic view of the world), Eastwood, Swank, and a realistic plot twist that raises issues about love, dignity and fate, the film becomes something quite extraordinary.The film won Oscars for best picture, director, actress (Swank) and supporting actor (Freeman). (2004; rated PG-13)“No Country for Old Men”: In this bitter, intoxicating and unforgettable drama, starring Tommy Lee Jones (“The Fugitive”), Javier Bardem (“Collateral”), Josh Brolin (“American Gangster”) and Scottish actress Kelly Macdonald (“Gosford Park”), violence  results from the discovery of $2 million in drug money.Joel and Ethan Coen, whose credits include “Blood Simple,” “Fargo” and “The Big Lebowski,” co-directed the compelling and shocking tale. The story is set in the 1980s, a time when traditional values were being discarded and drug-fueled violence was changing the landscape for old-school lawmen who couldn’t make sense of the new code of the West.The brothers also co-wrote the screenplay, adapted from the acclaimed novel by Cormac McCarthy. The film won Oscars for best picture, director, supporting actor (Bardem) and adapted screenplay. (2007; rated R)“Pan’s Labyrinth”: Mexican writer-director Guillermo del Toro (“Blade II”) created what might be described as a magical misery tour.In this compellingly dark gothic fairy tale for adults, a 12-year-old girl (Ivana Baquero) seeks refuge from her fascist stepfather by entering a magical labyrinth.During the hard-edged picture, she comes to believe those in her secret universe will help her cope with the dangers of the outside world and soon finds she can trust no one.Despite long stretches of gloom and doom, the brilliantly rendered import concludes with a sliver of light, a welcome touch after such a rewarding but draining viewing experience. (2006; rated R)Some other films from the last decade well-worth mentioning include:Cameron Crowe’s “Almost Famous,” Ridley Scott’s “Black Hawk Down,” Alfonso Cuaron’s “Children of Men,” David Cronenberg’s “A History of Violence,” Sean Penn’s “Into the Wild,” Tony Gilroy’s “Michael Clayton,” David Lynch’s “Mulholland Dv.,” Clint Eastwood’s “Mystic River,” Lee Daniels’ “Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire,” Robert Rodriguez and Frank Miller’s “Sin City,” Paul Thomas Anderson’s “There Will Be Blood,” and Jason Reitman’s “Up in the Air.”

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What’s happening to the housing market in the UK 2010

The floor of the New York Stock Exchange.Image via Wikipedia

I hope you have one eye on your wallet if you’re thinking of buying a house in the UK this year – 2010. One eye on your wallet, one eye on your job prospects , one eye on the economy and one eye on the politicians and bankers who got us into this economic mess in the first place…….It really is a puzzle thinking through whether to commit to a house purchase at a time when things could go very right or very wrong for the potential buyer.What do you think?

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Living in France 2010

Le Tour de France LondonImage by Kol Tregaskes via Flickr

Let me start by saying I live in the UK – to be precise England. To be even more precise Lincoln. I have lived in France having spent 5 glorious years in the Limousin. We sold up and returned to the UK last year.Would I like to be living in rural France any more?Not at all! The reasons are not hard to understand:

  • France is in the process of some considerable structural change which involves tension between the Government and its public services. This is going to lead to massive disruption in 2010.
  • The economy is struggling with few signs of how to get out of regional recession.
  • The France I went to live in many years ago is fast disappearing.
  • It’s getting very expensive to live there.
  • As the Pound/Euro move to parity there will be some pressure on those who have retired to France for the “good life’ to live much more austere lives.

So we’ve returned and are thankful we were able to do so at a time when houses have become more affordable.We’ve had our French adventure – let’s start a UK one!

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Political turmoil heading for the UK and for Europe???

Gordon Brown, Prime Minister of the United Kin...Image via Wikipedia

The recession is causing havoc amongst existing European Governments. Take the UK. Gordon Brown‘s hold on power has seriously slipped since the recession started, if not before, given his tendency towards the odd bloomer!But now well into a serious economic decline , New Labour look to be in serious troubles! They could lose the next election with a landslide defeat!

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Should I buy?

The Bank of England in Threadneedle Street, Lo...Image via Wikipedia

It’s almost 2010 and I’m in a dilemma!Should I buy a house in the coming year or should I hold back for further falls in the housing market in the UK. What’s a man to do?

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Holidaying in France in 2010

Limousin Invasion in the metro stationsImage by Bertrand Duperrin via Flickr

I’d like to think that I’d take a holiday in France in the year to come. Get down to the Limousin to meet up with friends, relax a little around a lake, take in the sights. Perhaps visit Paris on the way back.BUT……have you seen what’s been happening to the Pound/Euro recently!!!! Can I afford to travel on the continent anymore?

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Blogging for Success……


4 Tips on Retaining your Blog Readers

readersWhen you first create a blog, getting people to visit it is definitely going to be one of the most important considerations that you make. Simply attracting these blog readers is not enough if you are not guaranteeing in some way that they will stick around, or visit more often. As a blogger, it is as vital that you know how to retain blog readers as to originally attract them. Rather than worry yourself with attracting enough traffic, you need to concern yourself with keeping the blog readers that you do attract. The thing that is going to bring life to your blog is the blog readers that are dedicated to returning time and time again. Forget about the fly by night traffic and worry about retaining the right visitors to your website. Here are some tips for helping you retain the most important blog readers:

- * First and foremost, you should respond to the comments that you receive. If someone makes a good point about something that you say, or they ask a question about one of your posts, take the time to respond to them. If you respond well to your readers, you will be letting them know that you are trying to bring value to them, and that you appreciate the value they are bringing to you.

- * Next, you should make a point to visit the blogs of the people that are commenting on your posts. When most people comment, they leave a link training back to their website. If someone is writing valuably in your blog, then you should do the same in turn. Visit their blogs and leave a comment or two to let them know you were there. If you are commenting in their blog, it will be very hard for them to forget about visiting your blog again.

- * Make sure that your readers have an option to subscribe to your blog. Do not hide an offer for subscription someplace on your blog where it cannot easily be found. You should make sure that this subscription button is at the top or near to the top so that it can be easily found. Another great place for you to consider placing the subscription button is right inside each of the blog posts that you make so that it cannot be missed.

- * Finally, one of the best ways to keep your visitors coming back for more is simply to be yourself. If you are a personality that makes people want to read, then simply being yourself will keep people coming back for more. Once these blog readers have a general idea of who you are and what you are all about, they will continue to come around as long as you remain true to yourself.

These four tips can go a long way in helping you to retain blog readers who will continue to return to your website time and time again to read what you have to say.

Photo Credits: eduardozarate

Originally posted 2009-07-31 05:40:56. Republished by Blog Post Promoter


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Blogging for Pleasure

kosmic blogging in samsaraImage by ~C4Chaos via Flickr

Who these days admits to having an unsuccessful blog?Perhaps you have no subscribers or followers, or nobody but nobody ever visits your site. Does that amount to a lack of success or merely that you are, as yet, unnoticed in the tsunami of blogs out there. The vast sea with no bathers – a great cauldron of words and images fighting for space in a great cyberscape. But as far as your blog is concerned it is an island unnoticed, untravelled, undiscovered………But for you………

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We can’t all write a novel…..Can we?

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 08:  The six short...Image by Getty Images via Daylife

We’re often told “there’s a novel in all of us just waiting to get told”.Well, mine can’t be that keen because it isn’t pressing me at all to come out –  like some new energised babe into this old world. No – mine is hidden away and just wants to stay there, untold and unlived and even unloved.Now in my case it could just be laziness. I’ve only ever done that which will get me by and not a centimeter more. And it’s been easy living like that in the semi darkness just doing enough, just doing well, not totally committed, not flat out.It doesn’t get a novel or even a poem written but it’s a very safe island where nothing scary can happen to you.

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Christmas without a home

A homeless man in ParisImage via Wikipedia

There are many without a home in the UK this Xmas. Homelessness comes to the forefront of our minds as we finish off the last minute shopping and see in doorways or down a darkened alley those seated bodies like Buddhas of the night settling into their sleeping bags usually with a dog as friend.

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Christmas Time 2009

minifig holidays # 2: christmasImage by minifig via Flickr

The sun is setting earlier each day abd it’s just a little colder. December is coming down the lane with a freezer on its back! And it’s good to sit indoors and contemplate Christmas.

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Holidays in Lincolnshire

Now, we are ready, Santa !Image by Gattou/Lucie via Flickr

We’re getting just a tad excited here about Xmas……..

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Visit to Donna Nock in Lincolnshire

Donna Nook Seals December 2009 008Image by Rob Dunckley via Flickr

Had a great visit to see the seals at Donna Nock today……

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Lincoln coffee house

Took this shot at Waterstones in Lincoln…….

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Went back to the Gym today…..

After our bout of swine flu or whatever, we returned to some form of training today. It was very refreshing after a two week layoff.

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Blood test results tomorrow…..

Painted by Toulouse-Lautrec in the year of his...Image via Wikipedia

Am I worried? Yes just a little.

Carol tells me it’ll be cholestorol and the Dr will give me statin.

I don’t know. It’s the waiting isn’t it!

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This is our effort this year

How to outwit our neighbours in Nocton. We live on the right……….

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EPA and Carbob Crackdown

Here we go……..

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