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The Benefits of Ecommerce Web Design

Recent studies indicate that now is a good time to design an Ecommerce website. Ecommerce business is having a very positive impact on the UK economy. After the global recession many business owners and shopkeepers discovered the benefits of using the Internet as a business platform.Web Designtechnology is continually evolving and shaping the way in which we conduct business. What is Ecommerce? Ecommerce refers to the buying or selling of products and services via the Internet. This exciting form of online commerce has revolutionised the retail industry so let’s take a look at some of the benefits associated with Ecommerce.1) Reach a bigger audience.
We all know how important physical location is in terms of the retail industry. The physical location of your shop will determine the amount and type of customers viewing and purchasing your products and/ or services.Worldwide Internet usage has grown with 444.8 %since 2000and one of the benefits of having an ecommerce website is its potential to reach a wide audience. The Internet enables businesses to showcase their products or services to an extensive online audience. (Internet World Stats)2) Sell Your Product From Anywhere…
An Ecommerce web design enables you to sell and market your product from anywhere in the world. Today’s automated shopping cart and payment gateway systems have eliminated the need for one-on-one customer interaction. An ecommerce website will sell your products for you, requiring little to no physical supervision on your part. Products are catalogued, stocked, labelled and ordered electronically.3) Sell Your Products Anytime…
Ecommerce websites enable you to sell your products or services 24/7. This digital retail process minimises or even eliminates processing errors and time delays.The strategic benefit of an Ecommerce enabled business is that it reduces the delivery, resource and labour time associated with traditional retail. An Ecommerce CMS will automatically cover the following administrative areas in your business:

Document preparation
Error detection and correction
Mail preparation
Data entry
4) Saving time – Saving money:
One of the biggest selling points of Ecommerce Web Design is its ability to save you time and evidently money. Ecommerce business requires less maintenance, less staff, less time.From the buyer’s perspective, Ecommerce also has a few additional advantages such as:

Increased search efficiency
More comprehensive purchase information
Decreased time expenditure for resolving invoices and order discrepancies
Higher selection with greater visibility
When considering whether to design an Ecommerce website, take all of these facts into consideration. We’ve also written an article specifically on E-commerce websites and the UK economy. You can find this under the LILO article section.

Mortgage Direct Mail – Understanding the Risks of Creating Mortgage Advertisements

There can be a lot of risk in sending out mortgage advertisements in today’s market. If you are thinking about preparing a piece which offers certain loan products that your company offers, you need to have an understanding of the rules that apply to mortgage advertising. Although the rules vary by state, it is helpful to review what rules some states have issued concerning the marketing of mortgage loans.Here’s an example of a restricting statute from Connecticut’s Non-depository First Mortgage Lenders and Brokers statute that closely regulates the advertisement of mortgage loans:Sec. 36a-497: (Formerly Sec. 36-440l). AdvertisementsNo person licensed pursuant to section 36a-489 shall:(1) Advertise or cause to be advertised in this state, any first mortgage loan in which such person intends to act only as a first mortgage broker unless the advertisement includes the following statement, clearly and conspicuously expressed: BROKER ONLY, NOT A LENDER; or(2) In connection with an advertisement in this state, use(A) a simulated check(B) a comparison between the loan payments under the first mortgage loan offered and the loan payments under a hypothetical loan or extension of credit, unless the advertisement includes, with respect to both the hypothetical loan or extension of credit and the first mortgage loan being offered, the interest rate, the loan balance, the total amount of finance charges, the total number of payments and the monthly payment amount that would be required to pay off the outstanding loan balance shown(C) representations such as “verified as eligible”, “eligible”, “preapproved”, “prequalified” or similar words or phrases, without also disclosing, in immediate proximity to and in similar size print, language which sets forth prerequisites to qualify for the first mortgage loan, including, but not limited to, income verification, credit check, and property appraisal or evaluation; or(D) any words or symbols in the advertisement or on the envelope containing the advertisement that give the appearance that the mailing was sent by a government agency.As can be seen by a close reading of Connecticut’s advertisement law, this state places many limitations on what you can and cannot do when you advertise mortgage loans to Connecticut borrowers.For example the Connecticut law contains the following rules:1. When acting as a broker, your ad must state “BROKER ONLY, NOT A LENDER”2. You can’t use a “simulated check” in your mailer piece sent to Connecticut borrowers.3. If you are doing a comparison of loan payments between two loan scenarios, you must also state for both examples: 1) interest rate, loan amount, total finance charges, total number of payments (loan term), and the monthly payment required to pay off the entire loan amount.4. If you tell the consumer that he or she is “Verified as Eligible”, “Eligible”, “Preapproved”, or “Prequalified” – then you must also (in same area of the mailer and similar font size) state what the required conditions are to qualify for the loan such as income verification, credit check, and property appraisal. Note that some states (Virginia for example) will not let you write “Preapproved” on your mailer unless you have already done a complete underwriting review of the recipient’s loan application.5. You can’t make your ad look like it is coming from the government.We chose to show you this Connecticut statute because the above rules, although not required by each state in the USA, are good rules of thumb. Please check each state’s law for more information before considering any mailer campaign into that state.Another state recently enacted rules restricting advertising of licensed lenders and brokers in the state of Idaho:(From Idaho Rules Pursuant to Idaho Residential Mortgage Practices Act) Deceptive Advertising (Rule 40)01. Advertising. Advertising means making or permitting to be made any oral, written, graphic or pictorial statements, in any manner, in the course of the solicitation of business. Deceptive advertising is defined to include the following practices by a licensee, or a person required to be licensed under the Act:a. Making a representation or statement of fact in an advertisement if the representation or statement is false or misleading, or if the licensee does not have sufficient information upon which a reasonable belief in the truth of the representation or statement could be based.b. Advertising without clearly and conspicuously disclosing the licensee’s business name.c. Engaging in bait advertising or misrepresenting, directly or indirectly the terms, conditions or charges incident to the mortgage loan being advertised. Bait advertising, for these purposes, means an alluring, but insincere offer to procure, arrange, or otherwise assist a borrower in obtaining a mortgage loan on terms which the licensee cannot, does not intend, or want to provide, or which the licensee knows cannot be reasonably provided. Its purpose is to switch borrowers from obtaining the advertised mortgage loan product to obtaining a different mortgage loan product, usually at a higher rate or on a basis more advantageous to the licensee.d. Advertising an address at which the licensee conducts no mortgage brokering or lending activities or for which the licensee does not hold a license.e. Advertising in a manner that has the effect of misleading a person to believe that the advertisement or solicitation is from a person’s current mortgage holder, a government agency, or that an offer is a limited opportunity when such is not the case.Idaho Rules Pursuant to Idaho Residential Mortgage Practices Act, ยง, et. seq.These Idaho rules also reflect the general ideas that “Deceptive Advertising” will not be tolerated within their state.Idaho regulates deceptive advertising by prohibiting:o False representationo “blind” advertising (not including your company’s licensed name in the ad)o Engaging in “Bait Advertising” – sometimes referred to as “Bait and Switch”o Advertising using a false address or an address for a location that is not properly licensed by the stateo Advertising so that the ad looks like it comes from the government, from the consumer’s current lender/servicer, or that the loan scenario is a “limited opportunity”We provide you with these two statutes to give you an idea of how the states attempt to regulate your advertising practices. Note that almost every state will have some sort of statute or rules regulating advertising. Nonetheless, you should obtain and review a copy of the advertising rules from each of the states in which your intend to perform direct marketing.

Choosing an NMLS Mortgage License Education Course Provider

Every Mortgage Loan Originator licensed in the United States must complete Pre-License Education in order to obtain a license and Continuing Education each year in order to renew the license. There is a federal mandate that each state require at least 20 hours of Pre-License Education and at least 8 hours of Continuing Education each year after the license is approved. And many states have decided to require additional “state-specific” Pre-License and Continuing Education on top of the federal mandated minimum requirement. If a Loan Originator obtains licenses in many states, there could be a lot of Continuing Education required each year, which brings us to our main topic. How do you choose a Mortgage License Education Course Provider that can make this process as simple and painless as possible?Availability of Courses – Each Mortgage License Education Course Provider must get their courses approved through the NMLS (Nationwide Mortgage Licensing System). Some Course Providers only get the main 20 hour Pre-License Education and 8 hour Continuing Education, so if you are licensed in any states that require state-specific education, you’ll have to do that part with another Course Provider. Most Course Providers only get some of the state-specific education approved for the larger states, because it is very time consuming to get approved and maintain if they don’t have enough customers taking the courses. Very few Course Providers get the state-specific Mortgage License Education Courses approved by the NMLS in every state that requires it. If licensed in many states, it is best to find one of these few Course Providers that offer all courses.Course Formats – The Course Providers are able to provide Pre-License Education in 3 formats: Classroom, Webinar, and Online Instructor-Led. Classroom is a live course in-person. Webinar is a live course via a webinar online. And Online Instructor-Led, which is by far the most popular, is an online course at your own pace with a small amount of instructor involvement to meet the NMLS requirement that there be interaction between the student and the instructor. Due to the instructor interaction, the Online Instructor-Led courses must be done within a certain window of time. Usually 2 days for a few hour course up to 12 days for a 20 hour course. For the Continuing Education, Course Providers are able to offer all of the same course formats as the Pre-License Education plus an Online Self-Study format. The Online Self-Study format is virtually identical to the Online Instructor-Led format, except that there is no window of time that the course must be completed in and there is no instructor interaction. For most people, the Online Self-Study format would be the best option for the Continuing Education. Not all Course Providers offer all Course Formats, so you will want to find a Course Provider that offers the formats you prefer.Technology Platforms – Specifically for the most popular Course Formats, Online Instructor-Led for the Pre-License Education and Online Self-Study for the Continuing Education, the technology platform of the Mortgage License Education Course Provider is critical to making the process smooth. The NMLS has specific guidelines on how the Education Course must operate regarding timing of the course, instructor interaction, timing out after a certain period of inactivity, verifying that the person taking the course is the actual Loan Originator, etc. However, the Course Providers have a lot of flexibility in making the compliance with these requirements as painless as possible. There is a huge difference between Course Providers so you may even want to ask to test their systems out before purchasing courses, especially if you are licensed in a lot of states or are making the decision of what Course Provider to use for many Loan Originators.Customer Service – In my experience, this is by far the most important factor. Issues will come up such as courses not reporting to the NMLS properly, course windows ending before the course is completed and the need to reschedule, questions about what Mortgage License Education Courses are required for a new license or continuing education to renew your Loan Originator Licenses, or even just issues navigating their website. When these issues come up, you want to have someone at their office that always answers the phone during normal business hours so you can quickly resolve these issues. I have found that not all Education Course Providers have the same excellent customer service that you would expect. This is critical. If you start finding that the responses from customer service are slow or inadequate, then it is probably time to start looking for a new NMLS Mortgage License Education Course Provider.