What Is a trading Template and Why Do You Need One

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What are trade references and why do I need them?

Trade references can help small businesses get trade credit from suppliers so they can buy materials now and pay later.

Some business-to-business companies have the option of buying now and paying later. To do this, they need to see one or more trade references vouching for your creditworthiness.

It’s a service that’s offered by many businesses selling building and decorating materials, so for tradespeople it can be invaluable. You can stay working while you’re completing jobs, or waiting for money to come through from work you’ve finished.

What is trade credit?

Trade credit is used to give tradespeople immediate access to tools and materials on credit. Before you can get trade credit, you agree the credit limit and number of days until repayment must be made. Repayment terms vary, but on average repayment is usually required within 30 days.

Advantages of trade credit

Trade credit is an extremely useful form of short-term finance that can be particularly useful for new businesses.

Whilst many start-ups may struggle to meet the requirements necessary to win a loan from a bank or an investor, trade credit is usually relatively easy to get, and has the added benefit of no extra costs or interest.

Trade credit means you’re not dependent on payments from previous jobs before you can crack on with the next one. For small businesses, cashflow is crucial, so trade credit takes this pressure off.

Most businesses that use trade credit often have more work than they would otherwise, as they’re able to take on more of the opportunities that come their way.

What are trade references?

When you first contact a new supplier about a trade credit account, they may ask you to supply them with the contact details for one or more trade references.

Trade references allow the supplier to check your creditworthiness and find out if you’re a reliable customer before they offer you credit.

When applying for trade credit you’ll usually have to give the contact details for your trade references for the company to then follow up. Your referees will then be sent a written reference request asking questions about their experience working with you.

Common questions that are asked in a trade reference request include:

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  • Whether you’ve ever made a late payment.
  • How long the business has been working with you.
  • What credit limit you have with them.
  • Whether they would recommend you for credit.
  • Any further relevant information.

Who needs trade references and why?

If you want to open a trade account with another business, you’ll benefit from having a few solid trade references under your belt.

Without trade references, suppliers might not want to take the risk of giving you credit.

The better the references you’ve got, the better deals and terms you’re likely to get. If you can show that you’re reliable, suppliers will want to keep your business long term.

How to get a trade reference

New businesses

If you’re a brand new business you probably don’t have any trade references yet, so how can you get your foot in the door?

If you explain your situation then some companies may accept a reference from another source, for example your accountant or bank. However, what you’ll more commonly have to do as a new business is pay by cash rather than credit for the first few months. Pay cash promptly for a few months and you may then be granted a credit facility (and eventually your first trade reference!).

Established businesses

You need to get trade references from suppliers that you regularly do business with. As standard, companies won’t accept references from banks, insurance or utilities in place of a trade reference.

When applying for credit with a supplier, the application form will usually ask for the name and contact details of your trade references. Simply pass these on and the supplier will request the reference from them.

While it’s not necessary to let a company know that you’re going to put their details down as a trade reference, in some instances you may wish to do so. It’s completely down to you to decide depending on the type of relationship you have with the business.

When selecting a business to be your trade reference make sure that:

  • You’ve not made any late payments to them.
  • You‘ve been making regular payments to them for some time.

Applying for trade credit

The details required on credit applications varies from business to business, however some details that may be required to assess your creditworthiness and set up your trade account include:

  • Basic company details, type and structure.
  • Number of years trading.
  • Annual revenue.
  • Credit amount and terms being requested.
  • Bank details.
  • Contact details for trade references.

As a tradesperson, once you’ve got over that first hurdle and secured a couple of trade references you’ll find that trade credit is likely to be one of your most valuable sources of business funding.

If you’re a tradesperson setting up a new business, Rated People can help you get regular local job leads and with building your reputation. Find out how we can help you to get your new business off the ground by filling out our enquiry form and we’ll give you a call back.

Interview Question: Why Trading?

I’m not sure how to tackle this question when they ask it in an interview. Does anyone here have any advice/tips that they could share? Thanks

“Why Sales and Trading?” Interview Question

In any sales and trading interview on Wall Street, candidates will likely be asked to answer some variation of this question: Why Sales and Trading?

To tackle this broad question, you need to consider two components. Why are you interested in the division and what experiences do you have that can back up this interest? This story should highlight your interest in the markets and in the competitive, fast paced nature of sales and trading. If you can speak to the atmosphere of the trading floor (after having visited), you should touch on that as well.

In many summer analyst positions, candidates will also be asked to preference why sales vs. trading?

Why Do You Want to Work In Trading?

When explaining why you want to work in trading – you should curtail your answer to strengths and experiences that you can speak about. You could use a combination of the reasons below or a myriad of other reasons to explain why you want to work in trading.

Traits to Mention in a Trading Interview:

  • Entrepreneurial / Merit Based – Fast advancement for high performers
  • Client Interaction – Relationship manager and problem solver for clients
  • Passion for the Markets
  • Competitive Nature – Love taking risks and having a “score board” each day

You can also mention that you like the continuously changing nature of the business.

You should structure your interest into a story format. Please see an example below.

My interest in trading started in high school when my economics teacher had all the students complete a mock portfolio challenge. I started trading a mock portfolio of $100,000 which ended up being my favorite assignment throughout high school. Eventually I opened my own personal portfolio and traded micro-cap names. I came to realize that I loved the constantly changing nature of markets and I loved that there was a score board at the end of each trading day in my account. With all this in mind, I spent time networking with NAME OF FIRM and realized that I loved the fast paced nature of the trading floor. All of this led me to want to pursue a career in trading.

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What Is A Content Strategy And Why Do You Need It?

Last week I attended Content Marketing World with over 1,000 other passionate marketing and business professionals. The topic was content marketing and how to effectively deploy content strategies.

Some of the sessions were very specific to content approaches, such as Joe Chernov and Todd Wheatland‘s sessions on slideshare and the opportunity with video content.

But there were a number of sessions, including my own that asked the question “What is Content Marketing?” A few that answered “What is Content Strategy?” And still others that asked “What does it mean for brands to become publishers?”

So here I will define Content Marketing and content strategy. I will provide the simple business case for why you need it and also how you can quickly gain success with a content strategy that deploys effective content marketing techniques.

What is Content Strategy?

Wikipedia describes content strategy as “…the practice of planning the content creation, delivery, and governance. A repeatable system that defines the entire editorial content development process…”

I define it as the mindset, culture and approach to delivering your customer’s information needs in all the places they are searching for it, across each stage of the buying process. It is a strategic approach to managing content as an asset, with a quantifiable ROI.

What is a Content Strategist?

Kristina Halvorson describes the content strategist as the person who defines not only which content will be published but also why it is published in the first place.

I define the content strategist as the change agent required to explain why content strategy is such a huge opportunity for companies to evolve the way they market and sell products, by putting the customer at the center of everything you do. By helping them with content. By answering their top questions with great content.

What is Content Marketing?

Wikipedia defines this as “all marketing formats that involve the creation and sharing of content in order to attract, acquire and engage clearly defined and understood current and potential consumer bases with the objective of driving profitable customer action.”

For me, content strategy is all about the why and how and content marketing is what you actually deliver – the tools, techniques, channels and content types.

Why Do I Need A Content Strategy?

This is a simple argument: The web, social and mobile revolutions have changed the world connecting all of us and enabling the seamless flow of instant information. We are all now the most popular and trusted source of news and information for each other.

Marketing is not just about promotion. Traditional Marketing techniques are no longer as effective as they used to be. The amount of content and messaging being delivered to consumers every day is increasing exponentially. And so, a content strategy can save marketing and maybe your entire business!

In short, your content has to be awesome. It has to be truly helpful. It cannot be about you. It has to be about your customers’ wants and needs.

How To Be Successful With Content Marketing?

  1. It starts with culture and changing the deeply-held belief that marketing has to promote your products. Content Strategists need to be able to articulate why you need a content strategy and start to focus your organization on helping your customers.
  2. Define your measures of success. Look at how many “early-stage” search terms are driving traffic to your website. This tells you if you are answering your customers’ top questions. Look at your percentage of leads from inbound sources. This tells you how well you attract customers and earn their business vs. buy it. Finally, look at how much early-stage content you produce and how well it engages your target audience.
  3. Create an inbound content destination that answers your customers key questions, does not promote your products directly but invites your visitors to explore your solutions. If your content is great, your conversions will be too.
  4. Get a mobile plan so that you can deliver content to your customers in the format that they want.
  5. Think like a publisher and follow these steps to creating great content.
  6. Measure your success. Test. And optimize everything!

Let me know what you think in the comments below and follow the conversation on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook or Google+.

Why do countries trade?

Why do countries trade?

Countries trade with each other when, on their own, they do not have the resources, or capacity to satisfy their own needs and wants. By developing and exploiting their domestic scarce resources, countries can produce a surplus, and trade this for the resources they need.

Clear evidence of trading over long distances dates back at least 9,000 years, though long distance trade probably goes back much further to the domestication of pack animals and the invention of ships. Today, international trade is at the heart of the global economy and is responsible for much of the development and prosperity of the modern industrialised world.

Goods and services are likely to be imported from abroad for several reasons. Imports may be cheaper, or of better quality. They may also be more easily available or simply more appealing than locally produced goods. In many instances, no local alternatives exist, and importing is essential. This is highlighted today in the case of Japan, which has no oil reserves of its own, yet it is the world’s fourth largest consumer of oil, and must import all it requires.

The production of goods and services in countries that need to trade is based on two fundamental principles, first analysed by Adam Smith in the late 18 th Century (in The Wealth of Nations, 1776), these being the division of labour and specialisation.

Division of labour

In its strictest sense, a division of labour means breaking down production into small, interconnected tasks, and then allocating these tasks to different workers based on their suitability to undertake the task efficiently. When applied internationally, a division of labour means that countries produce just a small range of goods or services, and may contribute only a small part to finished products sold in global markets. For example, a bar of chocolate is likely to contain many ingredients from numerous countries, with each country contributing, perhaps, just one ingredient to the final product.


Specialisation is the second fundamental principle associated with trade, and results from the division of labour. Given that each worker, or each producer, is given a specialist role, they are likely to become efficient contributors to the overall process of production, and to the finished product. Hence, specialisation can generate further benefits in terms of efficiency and productivity.

Specialisation can be applied to individuals, firms, machinery and technology, and to whole countries. International specialisation is increased when countries use their scarce resources to produce just a small range of products in high volume. Mass production allows a surplus of goods to be produced, which can then be exported. This means that goods and resources must be imported from other countries that have also specialised, and produced surpluses of their own.

When countries specialise they are likely to become more efficient over time. This is partly because a country’s producers will become larger and exploit economies of scale. Faced by large global markets, firms may be encouraged to adopt mass production, and apply new technology. This can provide a country with a price and non-price advantage over less specialised countries, making it increasingly competitive and improving its chances of exporting in the future.

The advantages of trade

International trade brings a number of valuable benefits to a country, including:

  1. The exploitation of a country’s comparative advantage, which means that trade encourages a country to specialise in producing only those goods and services which it can produce more effectively and efficiently, and at the lowest opportunity cost.
  2. Producing a narrow range of goods and services for the domestic and export market means that a country can produce in at higher volumes, which provides further cost benefits in terms of economies of scale.
  3. Trade increases competition and lowers world prices, which provides benefits to consumers by raising the purchasing power of their own income, and leads a rise in consumer surplus.
  4. Trade also breaks down domestic monopolies, which face competition from more efficient foreign firms.
  5. The quality of goods and services is likely to increases as competition encourages innovation, design and the application of new technologies. Trade will also encourage the transfer of technology between countries.
  6. Trade is also likely to increase employment, given that employment is closely related to production. Trade means that more will be employed in the export sector and, through the multiplier process, more jobs will be created across the whole economy.

The disadvantages of trade

Despite the benefits, trade can also bring some disadvantages, including:

  1. Trade can lead to over-specialisation, with workers at risk of losing their jobs should world demand fall or when goods for domestic consumption can be produced more cheaply abroad. Jobs lost through such changes cause severe structural unemployment. The recent credit crunch has exposed the inherent dangers in over-specialisation for the UK, with its reliance on its financial services sector.
  2. Certain industries do not get a chance to grow because they face competition from more established foreign firms, such as new infant industries which may find it difficult to establish themselves.
  3. Local producers, who may supply a unique product tailored to meet the needs of the domestic market, may suffer because cheaper imports may destroy their market. Over time, the diversity of output in an economy may diminish as local producers leave the market.
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