Spring Forward Fall Back

Spring ForwardIt’s that time of the year again, when we all struggle to remember if the clocks go forward or back.  One way to remember is this little saying “Spring Forward, Fall Back”.  So in Spring the clocks go forward and in Fall (or Autumn to you and me) they go back.fall-back


Happy Halloween from all at Fitzpatrick Wholesale.


The Rule of 7


The rule of seven simply states that your potential customers need to see or hear your message at least 7 times before it resonates with them enough that they remember you.  Even though this is an old marketing concept it is still a widely respected train of thought.  But why stop there…7 is the minimum number of interactions you need to have but remember to always communicate with your prospects and customers.  In the age of social media advertising when brands are constantly being put on our scrolling screens, in order to stand out and be remembered you need to get a consistent message out across many different mediums.  To learn more about the Rule of 7 in Marketing, here is an article from Effective Business Ideas.

How to Leverage the Rule of 7 in Your Marketing

Build your List the Rule of 7
Build your List – the Rule of 7

1. Build a List

Whether your business is online or offline, start building a list of prospects and potential customers who give you permission to reach out to them.

Online, this is as simple as building an email newsletter. Offline, it’s as simple as having a database of your prospects’ mobile numbers, email addresses, office addresses, etc.

2. Appear Everywhere Your Prospects Are

Ensure you’re everywhere your prospects are; this includes events they attend, blogs they read, newsletters they follow, etc.

Don’t just restrict yourself to your platform; leverage other peoples’ platform to get your prospects to notice you.

3. Get Your Message Across Using Every Form of Media Possible

Use text, audio, video, images and anything else you can think of and afford to use.

The Rule of 7
The Rule of 7 Marketing

4. Get Your Message Across Using Every Medium Possible

Use your website, your blog, your social media accounts, your newsletter, adverts and any other medium you can.


If your business relies on selling to people, you want to be everywhere they are; when they start to see you & your offer everywhere, it slowly starts to become a part of their subconscious. Desire for it gradually builds up, and they take action sooner or later.


What is Halloween

Vintage Happy Halloween Typographical Background With Pumpkins

maskHalloween ,is also known as All Hallows’ Eve or All Saints’ Eve.  It is a celebration observed in a number of countries on 31 October which is the eve of the Western Christian feast of All Hallows’ Day.
It is widely believed that many traditions originated from Celtic harvest festivals which may have pagan roots, particularly the Gaelic festival Samhain.  This festival was Christianized as Halloween. Some academics however, support the view that Halloween began independently as a solely Christian holiday.

scary-manActivities include trick-or-treating, attending costume parties, decorating, carving pumpkins into jack-o’-lanterns, lighting bonfires, apple bobbing and games, playing pranks, visiting haunted attractions, telling scary stories and watching horror films. In many parts of the world, the Christian religious observances of All Hallows’ Eve, including attending church services and lighting candles on the graves of the dead, remain popular, although elsewhere it is a more commercial and secular celebration. Some Christians historically abstained from meat on All Hallows’ Eve, a tradition reflected in the eating of certain foods on this vigil day, including apples, potato pancakes and soul cakes.

Straddling the line between fall and winter, plenty and paucity, life and death, Halloween is a time of celebration and superstition.

(Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/)

7 Ways the Budget will affect your SME

isme_v57 Ways the Budget will affect your SME

1. Earned Income Tax Credit for Self-employed and USC Changes
In last year’s Budget, the Minister introduced an Earned Income Tax Credit of €550 for small business owners who cannot benefit from the PAYE tax credit of €1,650 available to employees. The Minister announced an increase in this credit to €950 for 2017. The three lower USC rates have been reduced by 0.5%. Accordingly, all income earners will have a lower tax burden to varying degrees. The ceiling at which the 2.5% USC rate applies is increased to €18,772 – this ensures that a full-time worker on the minimum wage will remain outside the top rates of USC.

2. Minimum Wage
The higher cost to employers arising from the increase in the hourly minimum wage from €9.15 to €9.25 will take effect from 1st January 2017.

3. Entrepreneur relief
The standard rate of capital gains tax remains at 33%. However, the Minister announced a reduction to 10% in the capital gains tax rate that applies to disposals by Entrepreneurs of qualifying assets. Entrepreneur relief offers the reduced rate of capital gains tax on the disposal by an individual of business assets up to a lifetime limit of chargeable gains of €1 million. The Minister is to review this lifetime limit in future budgets.

To qualify for the relief, the business assets which include shares in a company must have been owned by the individual for a continuous period of at least three years in the five years immediately prior to the date of disposal.

Source: newstalk4. Share-based remuneration
Following a public consultation and review of share-based remuneration earlier this year, the Minister announced the intention to develop a new, SME, focussed share-based incentive scheme which is to be introduced in next year’s Budget.

5. Retailers and Tourism
The reduced 9% VAT rate for tourism and related activities will continue to apply. The Minister noted that the reduced rate will act as a buffer for the sector against the weakness in sterling which increases the cost of holidaying in Ireland for British tourists.

6. SMEs in the Construction and Property Sector
The Minister introduced a new ‘Help to Buy Scheme’ for first time buyers of new houses that take out a mortgage of at least 80% of the purchase price. This scheme will provide a rebate of income tax paid over the previous four years. The rebate is subject to a maximum of 5% of the purchase price of a new home up to a value of €400,000. New houses with a cost between €400,000 and €600,000 will also qualify for the scheme but the rebate is calculated at the €400,000 limit. No rebate will be paid on new house purchases in excess of €600,000. The rebate does not apply to the purchase of second hand houses.

The Home Renovation Incentive will be extended for a further two years to 31 December 2018. This measure provides income tax relief to home owners who undertake qualifying renovation works which cost a minimum of €4,405 (excluding VAT). The relief is payable over the two years following the year in which the work is carried out and equals 13.5% of the qualifying expenditure.

Landlords are entitled to deduct 75% of interest incurred on qualifying loans when computing the rental income subject to income tax. The Budget provides for an increase in the deduction to 80% of the interest incurred on qualifying loans. The deduction will be increased by 5% each year over the coming years until a 100% deduction for interest is restored.

Mortgage interest relief is to be extended beyond 2017 to 2020. Details of the extension will be set out in Budget 2018.
7. Farming
Income averaging regime allows a farmer’s taxable income to be averaged out over a five year period. A farmer facing an exceptionally poor year may “step out” of income averaging and instead pay income tax on current year income with any deferred tax liability becoming payable over subsequent years.

The flat-rate addition for farmers not registered for VAT is being increased from 5.2% to 5.4% with effect from 1st January 2017. This scheme compensates unregistered farmers for VAT incurred on costs related to their farming activities.
Farm restructuring relief provides capital gains tax relief on the sale, purchase or exchange or agricultural land. The Minister announced an extension of the relevant period for this relief to 31st December 2019.


Content Source: www.isme.ie

Picture of Michael Noonan: www.newstalk.ie

Bulbs, Lights and Lumens

Bulbs, Lights & Lumens

Bulbs Fitzpatrick Wholesale


Governments around the world passed measures to phase out incandescent light bulbs for general lighting in favour of more energy-efficient lighting alternatives a number of years ago.  Phase-out regulations effectively ban the manufacture, importation or sale of incandescent light bulbs for general lighting. The regulations would allow sale of future versions of incandescent bulbs if they are sufficiently energy efficient.*

Types of Bulbs

  • Incandescent – Traditional Lightbulb. These were banned in Ireland in 2009.  These bulbs convert less than 4% of the energy used into visible light, all the rest is heat!
  • Halogen – Similar and about 20% more efficient
  • C.F.L / Compact / Fluorescent / Lamp – The first energy efficient technology

LED / Light / Emitting / Diode – The way of the future

  • Watt = The energy the lamp uses
  • Lumen = The light output from the lamp. 1 Lumen


Have a look at our handy guide to Bulbs-Lights-Lumens.pdf

*Source (https://en.wikipedia.org/)



Should You Pay More to Use a Credit Card?

credit-cardThe question has been debated across the world. Should the Retailer, charge more to a customer that used a credit card?

The EU says that retailers can’t discriminate based on payment method and will therefore ban surcharges from next year. Australia has also clamped down on sur-charges by setting limits on how much they can be per transaction. The US Supreme Court has decided to take up this question – and has now sparked international debate.

So what do you think? Is charging a customer a surcharge for using a credit card really discrimination? Do you offer a strictly cash only policy?


Retail Sales Volume decreased by 4.7% in August 2016

According to the latest results from the CSO (28.09.16), Retail sales have decreased by 4.7% in August when compared with the previous month, however there was an increase in the volume of retails sales for the year.


Retail Sales Index

August 2016 (Provisional) July 2016 (Final)

Seasonally Adjusted Retail Sales Index – All Businesses
(Base Year 2005 = 100)
    Volume Index Value Index
August 2015 108.7 97.0
July 2016 119.9 103.7
August 2016 114.3 99.8
Monthly % change -4.7 -3.7
Annual % change 5.2 2.
Retail Sales Fig 1 Aug 2016
Retail Sales Aug 2016

The  volume of retail sales (i.e. excluding price effects) decreased by 4.7% in August 2016 when compared with July 2016 and there was an increase of 5.2% in the annual figure. (See Table 1). If Motor Trades are excluded, there was an increase of 0.9% in the volume of retail sales in August 2016 when compared with July 2016 and there was an increase of 4.1% in the annual figure. (See Table 2).

chart-2The sectors with the largest month on month volume decreases were Motor Trades (-11.1%), Bars, (-2.7%) and Department Stores (-1.1%). The sectors with the largest monthly increases were Furniture and Lighting (+8.8%), Other Retail Sales (+5.1%) and Hardware, Paints & Glass (+4.6%). (See Table 3).

There was a decrease of 3.7% in the value of retail sales in August 2016 when compared with July 2016 and there was an annual increase of 2.9% when compared with August 2015. If Motor Trades are excluded, there was no change in the value of retail sales and an annual increase of 1.8%.

(Source: www.cso.ie)