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Chris Barling

SellerDeck

Chairman

44

Contributions

SellerDeck

Globe House, Lavender Park Road


West Byfleet
KT146ND

About the company

Established in 1996, SellerDeck changed its name from Actinic Software in June 2012 and currently has more than 5,000 UK customers. SellerDeck supplies ecommerce software and EPoS systems to small and mid-sized companies that want to be in full control of their online business. The company's desktop application gives merchants control over key components such as hosting, payments, fraud detection and customer feedback without having to rely on third-party, cloud-based solutions.

About Chris Barling

Chris Barling is chairman of SellerDeck, a company he co-founded in 1996. An ecommerce expert, enthusiastic entrepreneur and business angel, Chris has a passion for helping small businesses take advantage of new technology.

He has over 30 year' experience in the IT industry. Prior to starting SellerDeck, Chris held senior positions in Reuters and Cable and Wireless and spent time on the board of GLS (the UK's largest educational supplier).

Chris has written hundreds of articles on EPOS and ecommerce for a large range of small business magazines and websites. He has also published three books on ecommerce.

Chris is a keen Arsenal supporter and lives in Devon where he indulges his passion for sailing whenever he gets the chance.

CHRIS'S CONTRIBUTIONS

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Are your customers really happy?

I’ve written in the past about many aspects of a successful start-up, including playing to your strengths, being realistic with your plans, utilising your skills and properly working out your business proposition....

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Online business basics for mumpreneurs

One of the things I dislike about popular culture is how complex and nuanced debates are distilled down to black and white. Nowhere is this characterised more effectively than in the debate around working mums. “Can mums have it all?” the media frequently asks – often citing [highly s......

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Why your first employees are the keys to your success

Venture capitalists deciding whether to invest in early-stage businesses will tell you that there are three things that they look for: people, people and people. It’s a slightly trite saying, but my experience says there’s wisdom in this approach....

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Start-up lessons from the World Cup Bid failure

So England has lost the bid for the 2018 FIFA World Cup. As soon as the result was announced, someone on my company (SellerDeck) forum posted that they were really pleased. As a result of the failed bid, a new stadium and 2,500 houses wouldn’t be built a couple of miles from their front door....

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Has your business got the X Factor?

In business, as in the popular TV show X Factor, more people fail than succeed. If this can be attributed to luck, some people seem to have more luck than others. So it’s reasonable to ask if there is such a thing as the ‘business X Factor’ or is it all about being in the right place ......

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How to pick the right ecommerce platform

When you start an online business, as well as deciding what to sell, you have to make some fundamental decisions about your “platform”. In other words – what technology and payment methods are you going to use....

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Catching the slipstream of eBay and Amazon

The last few years have seen the rise of “online marketplaces” such as eBay and Amazon with them taking an ever larger share of the lucrative online shopper traffic.  This provides both a threat and opportunity for smaller online retailers. Catch the slipstream of the big guys and it ca......

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How to Land on the Moon

President Kennedy is famous for setting the target of getting America to the Moon by the end of the decade....

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Six ways to avoid being branded a “business bandit”

A while ago, a complaint appeared on the SellerDeck customer forum about a third party who was spamming our customers using somewhat dubious methods. We got in touch with the offending party and they were totally dismissive: “All’s fair in love and war” seemed to be their attitude....

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Are the Politicians dumb or is the electorate deaf?

The election messages continue to dance around reality. I did arithmetic at primary school, but did the politicians?......

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Know your numbers to measure success

I am sure we have all driven in fog. Near me, there is a notorious black spot. It’s often foggy, and when it is, it’s like pea soup. As I carefully pick my way along, I’m usually passed by a few nutters doing more than 70mph. There’ve got no chance if t......

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Facing hard facts on the route to success

When you start a business, you need to be a raging optimist. That’s because, frankly, it’s hard and many people don’t succeed. So to stand a chance, you really need to have a sunny view of the future....

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The benefits and pitfalls of having a business partner

Finding the right partner to help you start up your business more than doubles your chances of success....

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10 tips for pulling a cracker of a Christmas online

Christmas underpins profitability for the whole year for most stores. When it comes to preparing for the Christmas season online, “the early bird catches the worm” as they say. Before you know it, the rush to service orders has replaced any consideration on how to optimise sales. Here are ......

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The importance of family and friends when starting a business

I would like to look at an aspect of starting a business that isn’t often considered. Mostly discussions are about finance, marketing, recruiting a great team, VAT, legals and all of the other stuff of start ups. But most people need the support of family, friends, and partners. Start ups are h......

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Getting the boring essentials right from the start

There’s a dilemma when you are starting a company. There are lots of boring essentials like company formation, VAT, Data Protection Act, employment law and, depending on which industry you are in, a host of other legislation. Yet complying with these doesn’t help you to sell anything, buil......

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The Future of Ecommerce

There are a huge number of companies peddling different solutions to boost ecommerce sales, and of course they all state that they are the future. Some claim that they will address the “trust” issue of online commerce; others are working on smart imagery, providing the consumer detailed pr......

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Stop the credit rot

I’m infuriated by the election campaign. When things were booming, the Government poured more petrol on the fire, preventing any correction and encouraging the whole population to binge on debt. Then times turned bad, so they borrowed even more. Spending has to reduce because we’re spendin......

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Guerilla tactics

I’ve always felt that there were two types of startup – those with too much money and those with too little. I’ll leave the topic of too much money for another day, and instead think about the more common problem of having too little money....

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Complaints are like gold dust

Complaints are great. Although there is a tendency to do the same with complaints as with a medieval runner bringing bad news from the battlefield – blame the messenger – this temptation must be avoided at all costs. Complaints are the best and most unvarnished source of customer feedback....

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Play to your strengths

This is my third blog in a handful of months that is essentially about people issues in a start-up, but I make no apology for that. I will, however, admit that a few years ago, before I had actually started a business, I was a sceptic on this subject. But that was then, this is now....

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Why what you don't need is more important

Years ago I had a friend who lived with his parents, held down a good job and saved prodigiously. The result was that he had tens of thousands of pounds to invest as he saw fit....

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Two tips to make a billion

I have the privilege to serve on a board with two guys that started their own business and grew it to the point where it’s knocking on the door of the FTSE 100. Start-ups don’t get much more successful than that and they’re collectively worth more than a billion pounds....

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Sources of start-up funding

Back in the mid-1990s, my company, SellerDeck, was set up using my own money and some I borrowed from family and friends. My business partner and I then raised £165k from an angel investor, and later a further £1.5m from venture capitalists, 3i....

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What sort of start up?

There are two ways of starting up a company. The first is to take an existing business idea, and do it better. Preferably you will concentrate on an area where the competition is limited or you have some existing connections....

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Rules of thumb for starting a business

I am sure we have all heard the expression “rule of thumb”. I am also sure we can all relate to decision-making based on these rules. In a past role as an IT director, the rule “never be biggest and never be first” proved true on numerous occasions, some of which were when I didn......

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Are you legal and decent?

Like every area of business these days, there’s lots of red tape and ecommerce has its own rules and regulations. Just remember, though, it’s up to you to comply with the law. Here are my tips to help you ensure your online store meets UK regulations....

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Things you should know about finance, risk and reward

It seems to always be true that the only time that it’s easy to raise finance for a start-up is when you no longer need it. That’s certainly been my experience....

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Should you go it alone or with a partner?

When starting a business, one of the big decisions to make is whether to go it alone or start up with one or more partners....

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Spend wisely at the start

When starting a new business, the way that you spend your limited resources is critical to your chances of success. There are places where you can’t afford to scrimp, and there are places where you simply must not waste. You need to keep the chance of failure down by spending what you have very......

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The problem with money (too much)

Last month we talked about starting a business on very limited resources. This time, I would like to think about the problem of having too much time or money....

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Motivating your team

The two most common complaints in business are that no one asked me and no one told me. While, in my experience, it’s impossible to ever fully eliminate these complaints, making a concerted effort at addressing them can lead to a big boost in team morale....

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How to set up a successful online business

Many people dream of the perfect business, combining great profits with minimal effort. An online business can do just that. So where do you start?...

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Online selling - how to get it right

Chris Barling, CEO of ecommerce software supplier SellerDeck, shares his tips for online selling and says that normal business rules still apply. ...

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Key considerations when thinking about selling online

Chris Barling, CEO of ecommerce & EPOS specialist SellerDeck, looks at what a potential start-up owner needs to consider when going online....

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How to set up an online store

Chris Barling is the author of The Insider's Guide to Ecommerce: 440 business insights for the ambitious online retailer. It's full of useful tips and essential knowledge. Here's an extract......

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How to boost online sales

Chris Barling, chairman of ecommerce and EPOS software supplier SellerDeck, seeks insight from his customers about how to boost online sales....

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How we started our luxury whirlpool bath online business Luna Spas

It started with a £1 eBay advert, but quickly grew into an online business with a £1m turnover. So how did Luna Spas founders do it?...

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How we set up our multi-channel motorcycle and scooter business Urban Rider

Times were tough when Will Starrit and Andrew Taylor took over a motorcycle accessory shop. However, they were soon bucking the downward trend....

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How ecommerce enabled our car care business to grow

Based in north-east Scotland, Polished Bliss is a small specialist car care business run by four passionate individuals. Here's their story....

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How my online business survived early setbacks

Defrauded, burgled, but not beaten. How John Sollars and his company Stinky Ink harnessed the power of ecommerce to come up smelling of roses....

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Preventing shopping cart abandonment

It's easy to get upset when people visit your website, place products in their shopping cart but don't complete checkout. Chris Barling explains. ...

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Selling through multiple channels

Customers who shop across multiple channels spend more - but accommodating their behaviour can be difficult. How to operate a multi-channel strategy....

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Sell more to your website customers

Getting people to visit your website is only half the battle. Chris Barling provides tips on how to sell more to customers once they're on your site....