Thursday, November 29, 2012

The November Digital Issue of Gift, Gourmet & Decor is Now Available

Please click image above to start reading November's Digital Issue of GGD.
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New Business Opportunities To Be Offered by MACEF+

Macef will develop into a parallel digital event, becoming the most important online exhibition in the field of home, furnishing, and decor. Macef+ ( is the digital event devoted to trade operators who, by exploiting the web potentials, will be able to sign new commercial deals and extend their activities for 30 days after the end of the exhibition. 

Macef+ gives birth to the concept of "HD exhibition" which has been developed by Fiera Milano in cooperation with FieraDigitale in order to support trade operators through practical initiatives and develop business in an ever-changing market where time is getting more and more precious. Macef+ marks a new way to do business abreast of times, by exploiting the resources made available by the Web.

Through a simple procedure, buyers can get registered on, get in touch with companies, and view the detailed offers proposed by virtual stands; in turn, exhibitors enjoy the opportunity to manage their online platform, highlighting products, adding descriptions and multimedia contents, checking accesses to the stand and contacting buyers.

In this way, Macef gennaio 2013, thanks to Macef+, will remain open on the web until the end of February. The new online exhibition has been preceded by a pilot project that began in September at the end of the last Macef event and which was scheduled to end on October 31st. The project involves over one hundred companies and 500 buyers, and has allowed successfully testing the concept of online exhibition in light of its launch in January. The project is developed in partnership with Fiera Milano and FieraDigitale, the company at the basis of success.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

International Pool Spa Patio Expo Offers Year-Round Opportunities for Retailers

A special report from Giftware News columnist Marilyn Nason
This year's annual International Pool Spa Patio Expo November 2-8, in New Orleans, was aptly themed "The Backyard Experience," further reinforcing the importance of outdoor family living to today's consumers. Not only did the show offer countless in-ground and above-ground pools, spas, hot tubs, saunas and casual furniture but also an almost limitless and creative variety of toys, games for every age, barbecue grills, firepots, fireplaces, fountains and fire and water decorative combination — the latter perfect for savvy gift and home décor retailers to consider. 

As outdoor living assumes an increasingly important role with consumers where their backyards are concerned, exhibitors at this show were displaying limitless possibilities for gift and home décor retailers, especially where the elusive men's gifts are a factor.
With show officials reporting a 30 percent increase in display space this year, further proof that complete year-round practical family outdoor living has become a basic part of consumers' lifestyles, not a fleeting trend. 

Just as the recent Casual Furniture Show, furniture/home décor shows in High Point and Las Vegas, even the annual New York City International Toy Fair promoted this theme, the true family fully-accessorized center from pool, spa, patio areas to barbecuing, outdoor cooking and entertaining, games, all emphasized that today's backyard can not only reflect individual home décor tastes but provide enjoyment to capture the attention of every age and every pricepoint. 

Pool and lawn toys and games like basketball and volleyball offered the best in family fun. Same for in-pool exercising and fitness regimens; frisbies that squirt water on people or dogs who capture them and sleek bar stools equally at home in-pool or anywhere in the backyard, deck or patio. 

Perking up the backyard pool is a decorative cinch with round vinyl bottom-of-the-pool colorful mats in a variety of interesting graphic designs. Plush toys, especially in wildlife and goofy characters epitomized fun poolside possibilities for infants to teenagers, as did colorful pool floats for up to four people. 

As the growth in outdoor living points to long-term consumer interest, several exhibitors were highlighting the potential for almost year-round use of backyards even in areas where winters are a problem by showing practical and stylish fire pits, fire tables and infrared patio heaters, with built-in lighting. 

For the truly adventurous, tiki huts were on display, certain to excite gift retailers who can envision the accessories potential this backyard look could suggest to their customers.

Swim Way's Disney pool ring (

Float Storage's backpack (

Melissa & Doug's Suspend game (

Poolmaster's Hole-y Cow Island (

Thursday, November 8, 2012

ShopKeep POS Makes Time Clock Tracking Apps Obsolete

ShopKeep POS, a leader of iPad POS technology has announced a new time clock feature that makes it simple for merchants to log and track employee hours right from their ipad register. With payroll costing the average retailer 20-40 percent of sales, optimizing schedules is key to running a profitable business. 

The integrated ShopKeep POS time clock solution eliminates the need for merchants to re-enter employee information into other time clock tracking applications. The feature also allows the owner of a store to make adjustments when employees forget to punch in or out of their shift. Plus, merchants will now be able to pull sales by employee to track individual performance better. The information is then exportable and can be used for accounting and payroll purposes.

"We know how important it is for merchants to accurately keep track of employee schedules," says Jason Richelson, CEO and Founder of ShopKeep POS. "We've built this feature in a way that is easy to use, saves time, and helps our customers make smarter scheduling decisions." 

The announcement comes on the heels of last month's announcement to integrate mobile payment providers Level Up and Dwolla into the ShopKeep POS iPad register and is part of the company's overall strategy to consolidate apps and devices that merchants want to use into one simple, affordable POS solution. 

The new time clock feature is available in the latest version of the ShopKeep POS app that is easily downloadable in the App Store. Current customers just need to update their existing app in the App Store to take advantage of this time saving feature right away. New customers can sign up for ShopKeep POS online at or right from the ShopKeep POS iPad app. 

ShopKeep POS is an easy-to-use and flexible point-of-sale solution embraced by more than 3,000 locations to manage inventory, customers, and facilitate transactions, all from an iPad. 

The subscription-based service includes unlimited seven-days-a-week customer care by phone, email and online chat, ensuring its customers are never in the dark and always able to get the help they need when they need it.