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Reviews of USB2U Push Towards 3,000 on Trustpilot

Posted by USB2U on 31st March 2015 | Permalink

Confidence is one of the key factors when you’re buying from a company that you deal with over the Internet. Confidence that you’re in safe hands, confidence that you’ll actually get what you ordered and in time for when you need them and confidence that should things go wrong (as they occasionally do) that the company is able and willing to front up and deal with the issues.

Of course it’s not unheard of for companies to exaggerate claims about their capabilities to stretch the truth a little or to flat out lie about what the quality of what they are selling and to avoid dealing with any post sales issues or queries that might arise.

In an age when a great looking website can be thrown up in a matter of hours/days its relatively easy for anyone to claim they are the “greatest” supplier, that they have “thousands of satisfied customers” and that they can deliver top quality products in a matter of days. But, should you trust everything you read on a companies own website and take it as fact?

Printed Twister USB Sticks

Printed Twister USB Sticks

Before you place any order for promotional products (like branded USB memory sticks) that are going to carry your brand and logo on them we’d strongly advocate that you try and validate some of the comments claimed on the companies website that you plan to buy from. It’s one thing having a bad Internet shopping experience when you’re buying something for yourself but trusting your company’s brand and reputation to a 3rd party based purely on what they say about themselves is to put it mildly “a little risky”.

The Internet not only enables the little start up companies to compete with the bigger boys BUT more fundamentally it gives a strong voice to customers to share their shopping experiences (good and bad) with other prospective customers. Just as you’d use a site like Trip Advisor to review a hotel or holiday company before you make a booking we’d strongly advocate using 3rd party review sites like Trustpilot to see what customers are saying about suppliers of products like branded USB memory sticks.

Arguably such review sites (providing there is a critical mass of reviews and providing they are recent) are a safer way to gauge the capabilities of a company to deliver against their promises.

At USB2U we strongly encourage all of our customers to review the service they’ve received from us on Trustpilot. We already have around 2,9000 reviews and we expect to smash through 3,000 reviews in the next couple of weeks. So, if you’re thinking of ordering your branded flash drives from us then don’t just take our word for how good our service is check out what thousands of customers are saying – we’re currently ranked as “Excellent” with a trust score of 9.7 out of 10.

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Five Days and Counting – Come See USB2U at The Photography Show

Posted by USB2U on 17th March 2015 | Permalink

The weather forecast for this weekend (according to the BBC) is “cool and breezy with scattered showers” so not exactly the weather for doing a great deal outside. The gardening and other chores can wait until things perk up a little and the promises you made to get your bike out or take the kids for a walk in the Spring sunshine to see the new season lambs might have to be put on hold – well for a few days at least!

This weekend your time, if you’re a professional photographer or budding amateur that’s thinking of going professional this year, would be better spent at The Photography Show in Birmingham. The show takes place at the NEC in Hall 5 and runs from this Saturday (21st March) until Tuesday (24th March) and it’s going to be massive. Last year over 29,000 professional and enthusiast photographers attended the show and the organisers expect this year’s numbers to be even higher.

USB2U at The Photography Show

USB2U will be a The Photography Show at the NEC this were

With a mission to create a “photography day out you’ll never forget” the organisers have pulled out all the stops to bring together a 4 day program that is rammed full of exciting, informative and education elements with plenty of fun and shopping opportunities along the way. There will be plenty of chances to have a play with some of the very latest kit, to hear first hand from some of the world’s most inspirational photographers (Tom Stoddart and Mary Ellen Mark to name but two) what makes them tick and how they approach their work.

There will be advice clinics (run by Bowens) and plenty of in-show seminars and workshops to help you brush up on your skills. If you do decide to go then don’t forget your own camera because there will be tons of photo opportunities throughout the event and of course there will be lots of competitions to enter with some amazing prizes on offer.

We’ll be there again this year (come see us on Stand H131) but having been overrun last year we’ve invested in a bigger stand this year! We’ll also have more of our amazing USB2U team on hand to talk you through our USB Memory Stick and gift box packages and there will be plenty of show discounts and offers that you can take advantage of.

We’re taking lots and lots of examples of printed and engraved USB memory sticks and examples of our new wooden gift boxes that we’re keen to get feedback on – we love them but we’d still value your opinion.

If photography is your thing then we’d strongly recommend making some time to come to the show later this week and if you do please make sure you stop by and say hello – we’d love to show you what we can do and if you’re an existing customer we’d love to catch up with you and get your feedback on our work.

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Where Can You Get Printed or Engraved Flash Drives Delivered in 24hrs

Posted by USB2U on 19th November 2014 | Permalink

Pfft – we spit in the eye of delivery promises of 6 days. If you need your flash drives printed, data-loaded and delivered quickly then quickly is what we do! We don’t mess around talking days we prefer to talk in terms of hours. So, if you find yourself (for whatever reason) of needing some last minute promotional drives then firstly don’t panic and secondly pick up the phone and call us (or submit a quick quote enquiry via our web site and we’ll get back to you in 15 mins or less).

We’re based in Northampton in the UK. We hold tens of thousands of different USB sticks in stock in a wide range of styles and memory capacities and we print or engrave IN-HOUSE. No outsourcing to a local printer, no restricting you to one type of product and limited memory size options – we always have stock and we control the process from start to finish using our own team and as a consequence we can (and frequently do) take orders in the afternoon for delivery the next day across the UK, Europe and the USA. Don’t believe us then check out the reviews from thousands of happy customers on Trustpilot (many of whom will make reference to how blown away they were with the speed at which we delivered their order). Here are just a few examples from the last few days:

Beyond the ordinary!

We needed some premium usb sticks in presentation boxes for an event. The production team were even able to make up x100 usb sticks and boxes within 5 hours! To meet our tight deadline – which is beyond what is advertised on their website. I am very grateful and they look superb.

Great service and very speedy turnaround

Very impressed with the service from USB2U. Within 24 hours we had our USBs – they look great, the process was very easy, and everyone we dealt with was extremely happy. We’ll definitely buy from them again.

Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy !

The ordering process was very simple and the attention to detail excellent. It was an urgent requirement and the sticks arrived promptly.

So, if you have been challenged to find someone who you can trust to deliver a last minute requirement for USB memory sticks with your logo printed on them and with your data files pre-loaded onto them then please do get in touch. It doesn’t matter if your based in the UK, the USA or Timbuktu providing UPS deliver there on a next day service and providing you get in touch reasonably early in the day (ideally before 2pm) then we can normally help.

USB2U - Your Trusted Supplier of USB Memory Sticks

USB2U – Your Trusted Supplier of USB Memory Sticks

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Branded USB Memory Sticks – It’s What We Do

Posted by USB2U on 2nd April 2014 | Permalink

If you’re looking for a supplier of branded USB memory sticks then please do add us to your short-list of possible suppliers. Branded USB memory sticks is what we do and we’ve been assembling, printing, engraving and data-loading them since we started the business back in 2002 (some 12 years ago!).

During this time we’ve supplied millions of USB sticks to tens of thousands of customers (large and small) and, the vast majority we’re delighted to say, stay with us and keep coming back for more. One of the most important aspects of any buyer/supplier relationship is “trust” and this is particularly true when you’re looking to buy a product that is customised to carry your brand and typically has to be delivered against an immovable “drop dead” date.

The point is that you need your USB supplier to deliver a good, high quality product that echoes all of the strengths and values that you have invested in your brand and importantly you you’re your supplier to delivery your USB sticks when you need them – no excuses.

We recognise of course that pricing is a major factor as well so the service and products we offer are priced to be amongst the most competitive you’ll find anywhere but importantly our prices are backed by a strong quality ethic, a determination to offer the service second to none and we also warrant our USB memory sticks for 10 years – so, if you have any problems with them (of any description) then we promise to replace them with new ones at our cost. This is not a hollow promise tossed out there by some company that is new to the market and feels they need to add this statement to compete with the more establish companies like USB2U- our promise is underpinned by our strong position in the market, our trading history and our financial stability.

For an indication of what our customers think of us take a look at the reviews we’ve received on TrustPilot – Trustpilot is an independent 3rd party review site that we’ve invited our customers to post to over the last 2 years. In this time we’re delighted that over 1,500 customers have taken time out of their busy schedules to review us and we’ve even more delighted that they’re rated our service as “Excellent” with an overall score of 9.7 out of 10!

So, if you’re looking for a trusted supplier of branded USB memory sticks give us a call – we’d love to hear from you.

USB2U - Trusted Supplier of Branded USB Memory Sticks

USB2U - Trusted Supplier of Branded USB Memory Sticks

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Promote Your Business in 2014 with USB Cards

Posted by USB2U on 2nd January 2014 | Permalink

Promotional USB memory sticks USB cards of all shapes and sizes were incredibly popular last year and their on-going popularity in 2014 looks assured. It was only a couple of years ago that they were a niche product with most businesses and schools opting for the more traditional models like the “Twister” USB but when thinner versions of the cards were introduced all this changed.

The current USB cards are only 2mm thick (just marginally thicker than a standard bank card) and they come in a wide range of shapes and sizes. They can be printed in full colour on both sides of the card and because the “USB connector” is tucked away inside the card there is no cap to lose!

Of the different USB card shapes available the credit card option tends to be the most popular for two reasons:

  • It’s the largest of the USB cards and as such offers the most scope to get creative when it comes to design and print – there is lots of space to include things like strap lines, phone numbers, website addresses and postal addresses. It’s not unusual for the credit card versions to have a really impactful image on one side and for the reverse to be printed up with the company’s contact details (see the examples below).
  • It’s a shape we are used to carrying – pretty much everyone has a wallet or purse with bank card slots and these USB cards just slip straight into them! The credit card industry used to talk about the benefits of their brand have “share of wallet” and the same can be argued with these USB credit cards – how many times will your brand be seen if it’s carried around in a purse or wallet!
USB Credit Cards

USB Credt Card Collection

Other shapes available are; circles, squares, triangles, rectangles and ellipse (egg shaped) cards – all can be printed in full colour on both sides.

The different shapes of the cards allow you to get creative as well; we’ve used square cards for Durex and printed them to look like a condom pack, we’ve used the circle shaped USB cards and printed them to look like a poker chip, the rectangle shaped cards have been printed to look like a domino and the triangle cards have been made to look like a Toblerone!

USB Circle Cards - Costa Coffee

USB Circle Cards - Costa Coffee

Despite being only 2mm thick the USB cards are available in a wide range of memory sizes (128MB all the way up to 16GB). They’re only pennies more than a standard USB stick and they can be supplied (printed and data-loaded) in as little as 24hrs.

So, if you’re looking for something a little bit different to kick start your sales and marketing activities in 2014 then you might want to consider using a USB card.

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Advice For Buying Branded USB Memory Sticks During Chinese New Year

Posted by USB2U on 20th December 2013 | Permalink

Our advice on buying branded USB memory sticks during Chinese New Year is simple – don’t do it. Not only should you avoid trying to buy them during Chinese New Year but if you can, you should also avoid buying them just before and just after these particular holidays.

Almost without exception all USB memory sticks are manufactured in China so when China closes for a national holiday all production stops. In 2014, Chinese New Year (also known as the Spring Festival) starts early – the actual day is 31st January but factories and offices will start to close from around the 21st January and many won’t re-open until the 10th February!

So, for nearly 3 weeks NO USB sticks will be manufactured. In the run-up to the holidays the factories come under intense pressure to push through all orders before they close and on their return things are equally as chaotic as they try and deal with a 3 week backlog. It’s not just the closure of the factories that cause problems – in the rush before the holidays the International Courier services out of China and Hong Kong (UPS, Fedex, DHL etc.) get swamped and it’s not unusual for shipments to get “bumped” off overloaded flights. In summary chaos ensues.

The other big impact this extended holiday has on USB sticks is to push up prices – it’s a classic “supply and demand” scenario with too many customers trying to buy limited stock. Price increases of 10% – 20% are not unusual and for certain styles the price increases can be even higher.

Perhaps the biggest issue for any business looking to buy promotional USB memory sticks in early 2014 is uncertainty – uncertainty on price, uncertainty on availability and uncertainty on whether any order will actually arrive when it’s needed!

At USB2U we’ve lived through Chinese New Year for the last 11 years and we still carry the scars but fortunately we’ve learnt some valuable lessons along the way. Now we plan ahead, we encourage customers to buy early where they can, we load up with UK stock, we embargo all staff holidays, we set up overtime rotas for our in-house design and print teams and we generally prepare ourselves for a huge spike in demand for our UK “rush service” (we know from past experience that other suppliers will over promise and underestimate the impact of the Spring Festival and we often end up picking up the pieces).

Our core advice remains the same this year as it has been in all previous years – order you USB sticks now – you’ll get better prices, you’ll get your sticks for when you need them and you’ll won’t have to worry or stress about whether they are going to turn up on time.

Buying USB Memory Sticks During Chinese New Year

Buying USB Memory Sticks During Chinese New Year

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Branded USB Fairy Lights & USB Memory Sticks – An Awesome Combination

Posted by USB2U on 27th November 2013 | Permalink

Promotional USB memory sticks have always been a popular give-away no matter what the time of year it is. It doesn’t seem to matter how many USB sticks someone has already they always seem grateful to be given more which is just as well because millions are given away every year!

We’re seeing lots of companies buy USB sticks this year and sending them out with their logo printed on them but also pre-loading a seasonal greeting on the USB stick – this way when they are “plugged in” the Christmas greeting from the company giving them away can be viewed or played (lots of companies are getting very creative with video messages etc!). Providing you don’t make the logo or design printed on the USB stick too “Christmassy” then there is a much strong chance that they’ll have a life beyond Christmas giving any brand that’s printed on them lots of on-going exposure.

If you want to give away something a little bit different this Christmas then you might want to consider sending out some USB fairy lights to your customers. These are great fun, they don’t need any batteries, they plug into any spare USB port on a PC and typically they’re used to decorate a workstation or monitor. Whilst it’s challenging to brand the fairy lights with any logo the plain white box they are supplied in can be printed up with a seasonal message and we’ve also had a go at using our small “dog-tags” and clipping these to the fairy lights!

USB-Fairy-Lights

USB-Fairy-Lights

We’re currently sending out a set of USB fairy lights with every USB memory stick order we fulfil and we’ve had some lovely feedback from our customers many of whom have come to us and bought more of the USB lights to give to their own customers.

The ultimate package is a branded USB memory stick combined with a set of USB fairy lights – all delivered in a nicely printed presentation box – all for less than £5! We hold these in stock in the UK so it’s not too late to get your order in and if you need them in a hurry we can turn them around in as little as 24hrs!

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That’s A Pretty Dumb Thing to Say to Your Professional Photographer Customers

Posted by USB2U on 24th May 2013 | Permalink

If you run a global on line Photo storage and sharing service that has thousands and thousands of professional photographers as users (and many as fee paying users) then surely the last thing you want to do when announcing a major upgrade to the service is to alienate them.

Well, step forward Marissa Mayer Yahoo’s CEO whose company owns and runs Flickr – On Tuesday of this week Mayer said “There’s no such thing as Flickr Pro, because today, with cameras as pervasive as they are, there is no such thing, really, as a professional photographer.”

Understandably professional photographers and the various associations that represent them around the world have reacted with shock, dismay and disappointment.

The Professional Photographers of America (PPA) boasts 25,000 members in 54 countries and they are not happy:

“Mayer could not be more wrong, and her statement shows a lack of understanding that is difficult to comprehend from someone who is a supposed industry leader. “

“None of us would presume that purchasing a set of quality kitchen knives makes us a chef, or that owning a sports car makes us a race car driver. And purchasing a top-notch camera does not miraculously endow the owner with the knowledge and experience needed to create professional-quality images. In reality, acquiring such skills takes years, even a lifetime.” Read the full statement here.

Whilst Mayer has tried to downplay the furore her statement has caused by issuing a clarification on Twitter it’s not going to be enough for many photographers many of whom have been strong advocates of Flickr in the past.

At USB2U we’re a “Pro” user of Flickr simply because we don’t like or want adverts on the pages. We use to showcase our branded USB memory sticks and we use the service because historically it’s been a good vehicle for us to communicate what we’re about and what we can do to professional photographers – this might be up for review depending on what happens over the next few weeks!

If you prefer you can also view lots of images of our products on our USB2U Pinterest pages – in this day and age it makes sense to have a couple of alternatives in place!

Flickr USB Pages

Flickr USB Pages

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Branded USB Memory Sticks – Trends for 2013

Posted by USB2U on 31st December 2012 | Permalink

The last 12 months have been another strong year for Branded USB Memory Sticks but will 2013 be the year the bubble finally burst on these now ubiquitous products? At USB2U we’ve been selling USB products and most notably USB memory sticks for much of the last 10 years and this is our take on the likely trends for 2013:

  1. Sales of CD’s and DVD’s for use in the promotional sector will continue to decline leaving companies that have historically built their business around the supply of these products perilously exposed. Once at the vanguard of personal data storage CD’s and DVD’s are now considered by many as “old fashioned”, clunky and just boring. New PC’s, particularly ultra-thin laptops and notebooks often don’t have a built in CD or DVD player which reinforces the direction the PC market thinks they are going!
  2. The use of “cloud based” data and file sharing solutions like Dropbox and YouSendIt will continue to gain popularity but their impact will be felt more strongly in the personal data storage market rather than in the commercial sector. For example students today are just as likely to back up their homework onto a cloud based storage solution that they can access from anywhere and on any device rather than store it on a USB stick that could get lost or might not be allowed on the school networked PC’s. As these solutions gain in popularity there is likely to be a drop in the sale of USB flash drives for personal use.
  3. As the price of flash memory continues to fall (albeit with seasonal fluctuations throughout the year) the average size (memory size) of USB stick purchased will increase to 2GB – 4GB in the promotional sector and 16GB – 32GB in the personal sector.
  4. The very small memory options favoured by some companies and organisations (128MB, 256MB and 512MB) will all but disappear in 2013. The reason is simply that it’s uneconomical for the factories to make them anymore and where they are offered they you’ll often find that the what is described as say a 128MB chip is actually a rejected 2GB chip that has failed or bad “sectors” but at least 128MB are “OK” – so, what you end up buying is a rejected 2GB chip. These aren’t always readily available so supply is often limited and of course not everyone is comfortable buying “rejected” memory.
  5. Increased competition in the supply of Branded USB memory sticks coupled with falling prices for flash memory will see prices continue to fall throughout 2013. This in turn will open up all sorts of new markets for their use – expect to see more USB sticks loaded with digital brochures etc. given away at trade shows, press events and conferences.
  6. Lots more new designs, shapes and styles of USB memory sticks will be launched in 2013 including some interesting USB badges and buttons which in turn will shake up the traditional name badge sector.
  7. USB Buttons

    USB Buttons

    Increasing numbers of professional photographers and wedding photographers will embrace printed and engraved USB memory sticks and use them as a creative way of delivering their clients’ portfolios and as a way of generating new revenue.

  8. USB 3.0 will still be on a “slow-burn” – the undoubted benefits it offers in terms of read/write speeds have simply not translated into increased sales of USB 3.0 products. The move from USB 1.x to USB 2.0 happened almost overnight but USB 3.0 has failed to catch people’s imagination. Expect prices for USB 3.0 flash drives to fall during 2013 but don’t be surprised is USB 2.0 still dominates throughout the year!
  9. More companies will commission fully customised USB sticks in the shape of one of their products or logo – the increased demand will be driven by falling lead times, falling set-up costs and cheaper prices. Custom USB sticks also offer a “wow” factor that is simply not possible to achieve with even the best printed USB stick!
  10. USB Memory Sticks  for Wedding Photographers

    USB Memory Sticks for Wedding Photographers

    Data pre-loading will become the norm. At the moment only around 25% of companies that buy printed USB memory sticks get data files pre-loaded onto them before they are delivered. Sometimes this is because the data is not ready but often it’s because the company fails to understand the opportunity they have to get their brochures, media files etc. pre-loaded onto their USB sticks free of charge!

  11. Just in time ordering – the demand for printed or engraved USB sticks in as little as 24hrs is likely to increase in 2013. Partly driven by a failure to plan and partly driven by the markets willingness to gear up and offer a “rush service”. At USB2U we hold thousands of USB sticks in stock in the UK and can turn them around (printed, engraved and data-loaded) in 24hrs of less!
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Extreme USB Data Protection

Posted by USB2U on 14th July 2011 | Permalink

Protecting a company’s data can be very important, whether it’s financial stats, tactical plans or confidential information.  Considering some of the headline stories in the past few years it’s not necessary to explain the various ways that data storage devices can be lost and the seriousness of information getting into the wrong hands.  However, we have found a USB flash drive that gives a slightly different meaning to data protection.

The Cryptex USB flash drive seen on the right was made by a Russian man who goes by the alias of “Tarator”.  He deigned the USB flash drive on AutoCAD and then had it fabricated from metal, it is therefore a real working Cryptex as opposed to a USB shell concept.  It resembles a smaller version of the Cryptex used in the Dan Browne book and film “Da Vinci Code”, yet, we’d say that a USB stick was a much more rewarding prize than a piece of paper.  Forgetting the code could be quite annoying especially if your presentation is saved on it or you’re in a rush to have the information saved and you can’t get it opened.

These USB flash drives would certainly make an impact for any company if given out as a promotional gift with their own clues and passwords.  They would be especially suitable for a security company or a software data encryption company.  This flash drive design however, is not available to the public and it is currently unknown whether or not it will be taken to production.

Unfortunately USB2U don’t sell a Cryptex USB flash drive or even a puzzle flash drive however, we do offer a password protection service on the data pre-loaded onto logo USB memory sticks.

You can restrict access to any data you load onto your flash drives by protecting use of the flash drive with a password. We can set the password to anything you want during the manufacture process or we can leave it set to a standard “default” password that the user will be prompted to change on first use.  So how does it work? When a user accesses the USB Flash drive, they are presented with a padlock icon. When this is clicked the user is prompted to enter a password. It’s as simple and secure as that!

If this isn’t enough protection for the information that you want storing on your branded USB flash drives then we would suggest trying to replicate the Cryptex USB memory stick.  Good luck!

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