While technology enables modern businesses to achieve profound levels of success, technology comes with a price. Various innovations have enabled the use of a remote workforce, improvements in communication and data sharing, globalization, e-commerce, connectedness through Internet 2.0 and numerous other benefits. These and other benefits of technology, however, have decreased the need for human labor in some cases, have negatively affected the environment and have had other consequences.

The largest and most influential companies have the ability to make a huge impact based on how they address these problems. In addition to the direct effects, their efforts may spur change in smaller companies. With China’s population exceeding 1.4 billion people, major corporations in this country are closely watched. JD.com, which is the Chinese equivalent of Amazon, had made huge strides in the right direction. Richard Liu, who is the company’s founder and current CEO, actively guides his company toward completion of incredible improvements.

The company, which is also known as JingDong, had humble beginnings with several retail locations scattered across the country. However, when the SARS epidemic broke out, Richard Liu was forced to make strategic changes to the company’s operations. He transitioned the company to an e-commerce company, and today, it serves approximately 300 million customers regularly. More than that, its total customer base exceeds a billion people.

This e-commerce giant’s business model requires it to maintain large warehouses and a massive fleet of vehicles for deliveries. Liu recognized the impact that this business model has on the environment, and he took action. For many years, JingDong has regularly published a Corporate Social Responsibility Report to communicate its efforts and goals directly to stockholders and to the public. It outlines completed projects and initiatives that are planned or are in progress.

JD.com recently released a new report, which outlined the completion of a large solar panel project in its Shanghai warehouse. Because of the magnitude of this project, the company dramatically reduced its overall reliance on fossil fuels for energy and its carbon footprint. This e-commerce company is not stopping there. It intends to complete other similar projects so that it covers a total of 77 square miles of its facilities with solar panels within the next 11 years. By doing so, JingDong would have the world’s largest system of roof-mounted solar panels.

This is only one of numerous projects outlined in this year’s report. For example, JD.com is actively transitioning its fleet of delivery vehicles to green energy vehicles. It is in the midst of a rollout of approximately 5,000 green vehicles to replace outdated gas-powered vehicles. The green vehicles include tricycle delivery vehicles that are powered by solar energy as well as vans and trucks that run off of hybrid, electric or hydrogen power. Within two years, the company anticipates that its entire fleet will be comprised of green vehicles.

In addition to these efforts, the company is moving away from the use of cardboard delivery boxes, which have a one-time use functionality. These are being exchanged for green boxes that can be re-used multiple times before being recycled. The company is also making a social impact by supporting some of China’s poorest rural communities. It has created 25,000 jobs in these impoverished areas to revive local economies. At the same time, it has improved delivery service to these areas to ensure that residents there had access to all of the products they need.

Richard Liu actively guides his company in these areas, and he continues to look for new ways to innovate positive change. His efforts have an immediate impact on the local economies and environment, but they reach farther. Companies around the world are watching his efforts and are being inspired to take positive steps toward change as well.

The traditional system of annual performance reviews may have once been effective, but it’s clear that conventional performance evaluation practices have long been outdated. Only 5% of HR leaders believe that annual reviews are effective, and forward-thinking businesses have already found new ways of monitoring employee performance, regardless of whether they’re located in a traditional office setting or working out of a coworking space.

Continuous performance management is no longer an isolated trend, but rather one of the most promising answers to the problems raised by annual reviews. CPM provides a new type of evaluation that takes into account new trends in the workforce that have changed the way employees and managers approach performance.

Why Are Annual Reviews Outdated?

A number of factors have contributed to the creation of the modern workforce, and today’s workplace is very different from the one that allowed annual reviews to become a standard practice. There are now more than double the number of telecommuting employees than there were in 2005, and that trend will likely continue over time.
The relationship between employees and managers has also changed as workers are generally no longer satisfied by a simple source of income. The modern employee wants to play a larger role in his or her company and isn’t satisfied with the traditional top-down perspective embodied by an annual performance review.

How Does Continuous Performance Management Work?

Continuous performance management involves a much more hands-on approach than the traditional review system, so it requires a coordinated effort between employees and managers. It may take both sides some time to get used to the new feedback dynamic and feel comfortable with the process.

Rather than giving all feedback at the end of the year, managers should schedule regular one-on-one meetings with each employee that include discussions regarding individual performance. This allows managers to be more involved in each employee’s approach and gives them a chance to discuss performance issues before they become more serious.

The Benefits of Continuous Evaluation

CPM also enables employees to make small, incremental changes to their performance rather than being forced to take in large amounts of information all at once. They can also give other employees positive or constructive feedback on a day-to-day basis, making everyone more active in the performance evaluation process.

In an annual review, much of the information presented is outdated or no longer actionable. Continuous performance management makes opportunities for growth available every few weeks and allows them to be presented as soon as they become relevant. Roughly 90% of employees would prefer to have this feedback given in real-time.

Annual performance reviews may have once been an effective system, but that work environment is now a thing of the past. Continuous performance management is the best way for both large and small businesses to adapt their evaluation practices to the needs of the modern workplace.
Five tips for e-commerce store owners to boost their sales

Do you want to know how a fresh juice selling company grew their sales from $8000 to $96,000 per month? Today we will provide e-commerce business owners with some tips that can boost their sales and get more conversions. However, you must remember this: there is no shortcut to becoming an e-commerce success overnight. Some entrepreneurs start a website and then look for ways to get more sales, while some set aside heavy marketing budgets to seal more deals. Trying to build any business is not easy. With the right research and groundwork, you can put your work on the right path to unlock more sales.
Choosing a product and opening an online store is not the only task. You must look for more sales and a consistent customer base. Take a look at these tips to grow more sales on your e-commerce store:
Marketing online:
The founder of Raw Generation also had this thought in mind when she started selling fresh fruit juice from her kitchen. Jessica Geier focused on marketing while her dad managed the product end. Starting initial marketing through social media, Jessica moved on to explore other channels and used platforms like Groupon to get more sales. Currently, she focuses on promoting to her existing customer base to get repeat customers.
Start growing an audience for your brand as soon as you buy a domain name for your website. You can do wonders with organic traffic. Social media is the best marketing channel because it is relevant to people’s needs and it always free to post an update. You can collect many potential leads through your social media pages. Make sure you are using the right social medium to promote your account. Don’t start too many accounts; choose the medium which is most relevant to your business. For example, clothing brands must be on Instagram while B2B stores can thrive on Twitter and Facebook.
Trust badges:
The online world is wonderful, but it is also a dark and scary place. A person with a credit card in hand would think 100 times before disclosing their most sensitive information to you. How do you assure these people that your store is safe to make an online transaction? Through trust badges. Trust badges show a customer that you feel accountable for your presence and business. They also show credibility on the brand’s side.
Most customers will abandon the cart if they feel insecure about the mode of payment. If customers love your products, why should they feel insecure in online payment? ConversionXL did an online survey where people felt encouraged to go ahead with online payment by seeing the ‘PayPal’ seal. The same study found out that other trust badges from Norton Security, Google and BBB were amongst the most trusted seals in the e-commerce world. Trust badges will help you grow more sales on the site.

Fashion startup LeatherSkinShop has prominent trust badges on their website. These badges show that your privacy and data security are a primary concern of the online store. Another guarantee that will make people buy more from your shop is the money back guarantee.

Most people will know that you are serious about their experience in your store and they can always come back for another purchase.
With the sharp shift of customers towards the online store and mobile shopping, CRM technology has evolved manifolds. The importance of customer reputation management is directly linked to more sales. Most of the major CRM solutions providers have established the fact that the e-commerce industry is a huge market for investment. For e-commerce entrepreneurs, it is high time to invest in a CRM solution.
Online CRM solutions like Salesmate are a good choice because they are a one-stop solution for all your online sales needs. If your website uses Wordpress, you can simply install the Wordpress crm plugin on the website dashboard to get an immediate overview of your leads through the day/week/month.
An efficient tool helps you streamline the sales process and limit manual intervention as much as possible. The busy e-commerce entrepreneur has too many hats to wear in a single day. Let CRM tools do their magic and organize regular reports which you can analyze at the end of the day. You will gather more leads, follow up with warm leads and reach inactive customers when the sales process is automated.
Mobile optimization:
Most of your customers are shopping through their mobiles. It is essential to optimize your site for mobile and gather more mobile customers. Mobile shopping will soon overtake desktop or laptop shopping. Your site must be prepared to welcome these customers. Keep a check on visitor devices on your website by installing the Google Analytics plugin. The plugin is the best in business to know about traffic on your site. Check mobile traffic and then work on improving your site navigation for mobile visitors.
Think about how your site should look on a tiny phone screen. Design mobile first by placing buttons and menu bars in the best places. It will help you decide what looks best for the customers. If you want to give it a soft launch, try A/B testing your site by subjecting two different looks to selected users.
Live chat:
In a physical store, one can always walk up to the salesperson to ask for advice. In an online store, there is no salesperson to ask. Luckily, technology helped close this gap by introducing live chat tools. These live chat tools are an extension of your customer support program. A customer service representative can always be on hold when a customer is buying on your site. Simply tap the live chat window, and help is few clicks away!

This will ensure that more people proceed to buy the items they have questions about. Comm100 reports that the average satisfaction rate for live chat is 85.39%. Find an efficient tool online to take care of your live chat needs. If you can’t invest in a customer service team, find a good live chatbot.
Last word:
The tips mentioned in this article will be effective in your mission to secure more sales on the e-commerce platform. However, every business works differently. Marketing, technology and customer trends will continue to evolve, and a savvy online business owner must keep up. Search for new trends and adopt the latest ways to keep your site active and buzzing with traffic.


ABOUT Erica Silva
Erica Silva is a blogger who loves to discover and explore the world around her. She writes on everything from marketing to technology, science and brain health. She enjoys sharing her discoveries and experiences with readers and believes her blogs can make the world a better place.
Find her on Twitter: @ericadsilva1