Friday, 13 December 2013

SRED and Grants available for small businesses

I had the opportunity to speak with Jack Goodman, Regional Manager for BIG (Business Improvement Group) and thank goodness I made time to meet with him!

I was surprised at all the grants available for small businesses. I wish I knew about this earlier. Below are a few grants available for your business:

Federal Grants:

1. Hire an IT employee - Must be a recent graduate (3 years or less). Must work full-time and help you with IT software development. Grant available for your business is $16k.

2. Hire an assistant - Must be a recent graduate (3 years or less). Must work full-time. Grant available is the Government will provide assistance up to $8/hour for your employee's first year salary.

3. Going Global - If you are traveling outside of Canada, a grant is available to pay up to 75% of the cost for hotel, car, plane, etc. It must be an R&D mandate though.

Provincial Grants:

1. If you are hiring a sales manager, a grant is available whereby $50k is paid of 1st 2 years salary. As the employer, you must contribute a minimum of $20k to the employee's pay. The individual that you are hiring must show that they are capable of performing the job.

2. A grant is available to get a business evaluation done. Grant covers up to $15k.

Now, onto SRED (Scientific Research & Experimental Development). If you are creating a new product/service that will enhance your new/existing business or a combination of the both, you may qualify for SRED whereby the Federal Government will re-imburse you 35% of the cost of your project, while the Provincial Government will re-imburse you 6%. That's 41% re-imbursed!

It's amazing to find out all the available grants that are available. If you are interested in finding out more, contact eXmerce direct and we'll put you in touch with our good friend Jack! Feel free to call us at (403) 215-9220.

Monday, 9 December 2013

Are you looking for software development on barter?

I met with Michael Maltsev, CEO of Belcasoft, just yesterday and his company develops custom software solutions for businesses looking to improve and streamline their business operations. The company Belcasoft has software products that support operations, customer relationship management, human resources, time tracking, and accounting. For more information, you can check out Belcasoft at

If you are in the market for a new software system to improve your business systems and process for your organization, contact eXmerce at (403) 215-9220, and we can help to get this item for you on barter!

Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Barter for Startups

Start-up businesses can conserve precious operating cash by making purchases with their products rather than their profits, thus freeing up cash and bringing in new sources of business through the drawing power of the exchanges. When business owners "buy" products or services first by using trade dollars, they are essentially able to make purchases with interest-free credit lines.

Another key benefit to the entrepreneur is his or her ability to purchase such services as advertising on a barter basis and attract cash-paying customers. Additionally, joining a barter exchange - either offline or online - has the immediate and important effect of creating a new sales channel for a member business: once a business becomes part of a private "economy" using a proprietary barter currency, other businesses who may never have bought and sold from one another now are incentivized to do business with fellow exchange members, thus creating new sales channels.

For those businesses and individuals considering barter as a technique for maximizing profits, the experts suggest some of the following tips:

Think barter before making any purchase for your business. This is especially critical for start-ups, when you may well be able to finance the cost of office furniture, phone systems, advertising, and the like by using trade dollars now that you won't have to replace until later, once your business is off and running.

Use barter to maximize sales by selling unused or unsold inventory at full prices. This can include: filling empty hotel rooms and airline seats; creating new sales channels by a new group of barter buyers with available trade credits to purchase from you at full prices; and providing professional skills or services to maximize billable time and reduce downtime.

Train your vendors to use barter to your own advantage. When suppliers approach you for business, try to make barter one of the contingencies of making your deal.

Buy on trade, resell for cash. Barterers frequently have the opportunity to acquire goods on trade, which can be resold to cash customers. Graphic designers, for instance, can buy typesetting or color separations on trade and bill the cost of these expenses directly to their cash-paying clients.

Financing a start-up in this economy is challenging. Before buying anything for your start-up, consider barter for things like office furniture, phone systems, and advertising, conserving precious operating cash. Call eXmerce at (403) 215-9220 for assistance with your start-up.

Friday, 1 March 2013

Which Businesses Take Advantage of Barter?

Most are small and mid-sized businesses with empty chairs and a perishable product. We’re talking about the window washer with no jobs on the schedule or the baseball team with extra seats. How many restaurants have empty tables on Mondays? They’re discounting heavily, using Groupon, when we can drive business to them at full retail price.

One of the most popular businesses we have are dentists. Our members can use them to offer their employees dental benefits, which typically employees don’t get unless they work for a big employer. In fact, a lot of our members use barter as a health-benefit backup program so they can give their employees dental, optical, and chiropractic care.

Find out more about extended health benefits package by contacting eXmerce at 403-215-9220.

Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Powerful Tip To Improve Sales

Here’s a proven tip that won’t cost much but your time, yet could be just the ticket to improve your sales. The personal touch can bring dramatic results, as evidenced by the Stash Tea Company, which began sending a personal note to people who requested a catalog.

The program was based on their feeling that if a person sent a request, they deserved a special answer. Thus, all catalogs were accompanied by a personal letter. The company reported that this has boosted their sales a substantial 20%, dramatically affecting their bottom-line profits. In today’s often impersonal world, this is a simple but powerful idea.

Call eXmerce at (403) 215-9220 and improve your sales by using barter!

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

What Are Trade Dollars?

It's a virtual trade currency we use through the eXmerce community. A member pays a one-time set up fee of $299 plus a monthly $25 fee to open an eXmerce account and the member starts with a zero trade balance. Each member is assigned a trade broker and it is the responsibility of the trade broker to get to know the business and help the new member start earning trade dollars by selling their products and services to other members of the network. For instance, a hotel might say - the month of February is a slower time for them, so they'd like to drive traffic and earn trade dollars through the eXmerce network. When one of the member's through the eXmerce network checks into the hotel, they pay for their stay with Trade Dollars. The hotel owner then puts those Trade Dollars into his advertising budget or uses them later for anything else found through the eXmerce community.

If you have further questions about barter and how it works, please contact us at (403) 215-9220 or e-mail

Friday, 15 February 2013

Services Costs Keep Increasing ... Another Reason For Using Trade

Many stories about deflationary prices have appeared in our nation’s newspapers and TV outlets. All of which leads a person to believe that everything is dropping in price. Not so.

Although big-ticketed manufactured items are dropping a bit, what’s really more important for the entrepreneurial business owner is the cost of services used on a regular basis. And those prices are not dropping, they are increasing.

Luckily, many of these services are available through your trade exchange, where purchasing them on trade — at your barter cost — makes excellent sense in today’s tight economy.

Bottom-line: Focus your barter purchases on the increasingly costly services to get the most “bang” for your trade dollar!

Find out how eXmerce can help you save cash for your business! Please call us at (403) 215-9220.