3 Proven Strategies For Small Business Owners To Increase Cashflow

3 Proven Strategies for Small Business Owners to Increase Cash Flow

Is your small business struggling to make enough profit to pay the bills? Living paycheck to paycheck can be quite frustrating. Perhaps you started a small business so you could pursue your dream while earning money at the same time. If so, then you know that it isn’t always easy to get a small business to bring in the profits you’d like.
However, if you’re willing to work hard and have a good plan, there’s no limit to how far you can take your small business. Luckily, there are many ways to increase your current cash flow and free you from the threat of financial disaster.
Consider these strategies to increase your cash flow:

1.Collect feedback. Many small business owners forget the importance of soliciting feedback from their clients. There are several effective ways to find out what your clients think about your products and services. Ask the client to fill out a quick survey or questionnaire to rate various aspects of your business. These surveys can provide an excellent glimpse into your client’s point of view. There are many different websites that enable you to create simple surveys. Look online to find one that meets your needs.
Follow up with your clients with a phone-call or email asking for comments about your products or services. Inquire about which aspects they are satisfied with and which need some work.
Talk to your clients in person and ask them how they feel about their experiences with your business.
Remember, word of mouth is one of the best ways to advertise your business

If you have a bunch of satisfied customers, they’ll tell their friends and family about their positive experience and you’ll get more business.
2.Get rid of products that don’t sell. It’s likely that you offer your customers a wide variety of products, but only a few of these products bring you maximum profit. Sometimes a large inventory can work against your business. Customers often avoid buying altogether when they’re overwhelmed with options.
Instead of offering more products that likely won’t be sold, trash the unattractive products and offer more items or services related to your best-sellers. This is an excellent way to boost sales while reducing upkeep and inventory costs.
3.Pursue unique marketing strategies. If your business is experiencing a steep drop in sales, there must be a reason. It could be that your marketing techniques are simply not as effective as you thought. Consider alternative marketing techniques. Think about marketing your business online. It’s becoming easier with each passing day and more people are prone to search the internet for better deals. Businesses that have online order options are often much more successful. It’s a perfect way to increase cash flow.
Get the word out. Take advantage of social media sites like Facebook and Twitter to promote your business.
Radio advertisements, commercials, billboards, and flyers all increase the visibility of your business. Sometimes, door-to-door marketing is just as effective.
By using these strategies you can boost sales and increase the revenue of your business. Once these strategies have been implemented, there will be no need to worry about how you’re going to pay the next bill. You’ll finally have the money to live the life that you’ve dreamed of.

It just requires determination, persistence, creativity, and an open mind to make your business successful. Test different strategies and stick to the ones that work best for you. Your efforts will be worth it once you see those increased profits.

5 Ways To Legitimately Make Money Online

5 Legitimate Ways to Make Money Online

The internet offers numerous opportunities for you to make money online. Unfortunately, the internet can also be a minefield of scammers. Because of this, many who have dreamed of earning a part time or full time income from home have given up. If you're dreaming of a way to supplement or replace your income at home, you can do so if you know where to look. 
Try one or more of these ways to make money online:

1. Freelance your expertise. If your specialty lends itself to freelancing remotely, take advantage of your scheduling flexibility and begin seeking paid work online. If possible, ask your current employer or existing clients if they'd be comfortable allowing you to work from home. 
• Careers that often work well with freelancing include writing and editing, consulting, marketing, transcription, medical coding, web/graphic designing, voiceover work, and programming.
• Find clients by optimizing your website for the search engines, contacting local businesses, applying for gigs on Craigslist, and applying for freelance job openings on bidding sites.
• Some of the most popular bidding sites for freelancers are Odesk.com, Elance.com, Guru.com, Rentacoder.com and getafreelancer.com.

2. Affiliate marketing. Affiliate marketing is selling the products of others online for a commission. If you're inconsistent and sporadic with your efforts, you'll be lucky to make $100 in a year. But if you're consistent and diligent with your efforts, the sky's the limit on your earnings. 

• Affiliate marketing is all about doing your research before you begin trying to make money and most of your money will come by planting seeds. In this industry, "seeds" are affiliate links. The more affiliate links you have on the net, the more money you'll make. 
• It can take months to see serious income as an affiliate marketer. It's common to earn just $10 for the first few months of your affiliate marketing career, and then all of a sudden to start earning $2,000, $4,000, or more per month. 

3. Virtual assistant. A virtual assistant is essentially an office or personal assistant that serves their clients from home rather than a traditional office setting. You'll likely answer emails, set appointments, and spend time making various types of spreadsheets. 
• Essentially, being a virtual assistant is like being a freelancer. You can have multiple clients at once. Generally, the pay rate ranges from $10 per hour as an entry-level assistant, to about $40 per hour for highly experienced ones.
• Like most freelancers, you can also find virtual assistant jobs on freelance websites and Craigslist. 

4. Blogging. As a blogger, you're totally your own boss. But with this freedom also comes great responsibility. You're in charge of creating daily blog posts, driving traffic to your blog, and sourcing advertisers for your blog. For greater success, you'll also want to build a list of targeted subscribers.
• The income for a blogger varies widely. You're paid by advertising revenue, rather than on a per project basis. Plus, you can make money from selling your products or the products of others for a commission through your blog and newsletter. Your income is directly correlated with your skills, efforts, and likeability.
• Keep your day job for at least a year. It takes a while to build up income in a blog. Some blogs can take two years or more to build up revenue that's equivalent to your current salary.

5. Selling your own product. The classic method of making money online is selling your own product. Whether you make aprons, clothing, and kitschy dcor or you're selling manufactured cell phone accessories, there's a place for your business on the internet.

• To make money online by selling products, you must market your business diligently. Employ search engine optimization tactics, start a blog for your business, ensure that your website is easy to navigate, and embark on an advertising campaign to attract buyers.
While there are still many scams on the internet, a bit of legwork can help you find legitimate ways to make money from home. Seek forums for like-minded people online that can guide you in the right direction and help you steer clear of scams. 
Remember that no legitimate work at home opportunity asks you to pay in advance to work for them. Above all, use discretion and proceed with caution. Give the above opportunities a try for a legitimate way to put more cash in your pocket and more freedom into your schedule

Simplified Social Media Statistics Reading

Making Sense of your Social Media Analytics – Quick Reference Guide


Whether you like it or not, social media has now become a part of everyday life and that includes how you present your business to your customers. Whether you own a small handyman service or a computer repair shop, if you want to increase your market share, you'll need to have a presence on social media.


But how can you determine whether or not you are actually making an impact on social media? It can be daunting at first, especially if you don't consider yourself an expert when it comes to technology, but all you have to do is follow these guidelines and you'll easily be able to understand how your customers are interacting with you through social media.






Understanding Social Analytics


It makes sense to actually understand the meaning of social analytics before you attempt to measure it. To make it simple, social analytics are the measurements of the success of your social-media marketing. However, it doesn't necessarily mean you need to look at the number of your Facebook followers or the amount of retweets you get (though that is one part of it). Instead, you need to be looking at the following things in order to fully understand your social media analytics.






The Size Of Your Community


This one is pretty easy to understand, as all you have to do is look at the total number of followers or Facebook fans that you have. If you have multiple social media accounts, you will want to look at all of your fans across the entire social media spectrum, as the combined total can be an indication of whether or not you are effectively marketing yourself on social media. The more you increase the size of your community, the more effective your social-media marketing is going to be.


To keep track of all of the analytical data for your social media profiles, Klout is a resource that you should definitely consider advantage of. It can examine up to 12 social media profiles and will measure the influence of each profile based on the level of your followers' engagement. It can easily allow you to see which updates you make have the biggest impact on your customers and followers.





Bounce Rate


Here is where things get a little tricky. Your bounce rate is the percentage of visitors who either leave your site immediately after visiting it or bounce around from page to page on your site. A higher bounce rate means more people are actively exploring your site, which means they are engaged by your content and want to find out more! Google Analytics is one of the best analytical resources on the market, especially when it comes to determining bounce rates for small and medium-sized businesses.






Visit-to-Lead Conversion Rate


This determines exactly how many of your followers are actively visiting your social media profiles because of "leads" that you are having. This can be anything from having a special offer on a product or service that you offer or some type of other promotion.


Measuring this can allow you to see which leads are more successful than others, which can allow you to increase the effectiveness of your social-media marketing strategy. If you're having trouble determining this information, Google Analytics is a great tool for analyzing these types of conversion rates.






Lead-to-Customer Conversion Rate


This is perhaps the more important conversion rate. It can be a little difficult to track, since it doesn’t technically take place on social media, but it can help you determine whether or not your social media presence is bringing in customers. This conversion rates refers to the number of people that actually become one of your customers because of one of the "leads" you posted on social media. Understanding this number can allow you to identify which leads are the most effective at bringing in more potential customers.

The Tone of Engagement

The age old saying "there is no such thing as bad publicity" doesn't really apply to social media. A good reputation that took you years to build can come crumbling down in a matter of days if you neglect your brand on social media.  So you need to be able to determine whether or not your customers/fans are positively engaging with the content on your social media sites. It can help you determine if they are happy with what you offer and if they seem unhappy with something, you can attempt to communicate with them in order to fix it.






Who Exactly Are Your Followers?


Understanding your clientele base is important in any business and social media can easily do that for you. This aspect of social analytics is important because it not only allows you to determine who your customers/fans are, but other crucial marketing aspects, like where they are located or what time they are visiting your site.


It can also help you determine if the people visiting your sites are actually leads or other "competitors" in your industry – which means you need to change your social marketing strategy in order to bring in fresh customers.






Determining Where the Lead Came From


If you're running special promotions on referral or paid advertising websites, you'll definitely want to know whether or not they are effective at bringing in customers. This statistic can help you determine which leads bring in more traffic to your site and can allow you to figure out where you want to focus most of your social-media marketing efforts.


One of the best social media analytics resources that can track your leads is Bit.ly. It is a URL shortening and tracking tool, which can be incredibly useful if you use Twitter, and Facebook too I suppose. More importantly, it can help you determine which links are getting the most clicks. By taking advantage of this resource, you can figure out what type of content your customers/followers are more likely to be interested in.






How Do Your Customers View Your Brand?


Understanding your customers is incredibly important, which is why you'll want to know whether or not they started following you by word of mouth or if they "liked" your page after they took advantage of a special promotion. This can give you insight into how effective your marketing strategy is and whether or not some customers are satisfied with your products and promotions.


And if you really want to get a full understanding of how your customers/followers view your brand, SimplyMeasured offers free analytical reports that can show you how effective you are on each social media site. SimplyMeasured even offers reports that compare your social media statistics to your competition!


 By utilizing the proper resources and tools, you can better understand your social media analytics. And by understanding your social media analytics, you can better understand your customers' motivations, as well as what makes them a loyal supporter of your brand!

7 Conversion Tricks To Engage Your Audience

7 Conversation Starters to Get Your Audience Talking

You can’t read anything about marketing these days without reading about engaging your customers. But what does that really mean?

Engaging means capturing someone’s attention – connecting – and having a conversation. Not easy to do on the internet, particularly when there are millions of other things clamoring for attention at the same time.

But, that doesn’t mean it’s impossible. It just means you need to try harder.

The thing is, your customers want to talk to you. They want to know what you think, and most importantly, they want to believe that you care what they think.

It’s not as hard as you might think. Here are 7 simple conversation starters to get your audience talking to you.

#1: Express an Opinion about Industry News

You want to build authority within your industry or niche? One of the best ways to do that AND start a conversation with your followers is to express an opinion – particularly if it might be new or controversial. Of course, you should only do this if you can back up your opinion.

A good way to get started with this tactic is to follow relevant publishers and influencers in your industry. When you see them post a piece of news that’s relevant to your followers, read the article (or watch the video) and figure out what you can add to the conversation. Then share it – and make sure to include a call to action that encourages your followers to chime in with their own opinions.

#2: Ask for Stories and Experiences

Everybody has a story to tell – and when you’re speaking to an audience who all have something in common with you, then it’s easy to think of a topic that may inspire people to share their stories.

The key here is to share your own story and then ask your followers to share their best stories with you. For example, say you own a travel agency. You might tell a story of a trip you booked for yourself before you were a travel agent and how it went wrong. Then, you could ask your followers for their travel horror stories.

The benefit of this type of sharing is that it provides you with an opportunity to respond, express sympathy or amazement, and build a bond with potential customers online.

#3: Get Recommendations

People might love to tell stories, but do you know what else they like? Giving advice and making recommendations! And asking them for recommendations is a great way to get them talking.

What kind of recommendations should you ask for? Ideally, they should be relevant to your product or service. For example, I’m a marketing guy. I might ask:

  1. What are your favorite marketing podcasts?
  2. What publications do you follow on Facebook and Twitter?
  3. Which marketing technique is your favorite, and why?
  4. What marketing apps would you recommend?

You get the idea. The key is not to stray too far from your brand and product. Instead, keep a tight focus and encourage your followers to share their experiences and recommendations with you and each other.

#4: Promote Your Events and Your Community

Are you appearing at a local street fair or charity event? Sharing your involvement is a great way to remind people that you stand for something other than making money – and to underscore your involvement in your community and industry.

Even if you’re not appearing at an event, there’s a benefit to letting your followers know what’s going on in your community. Giving a nod to other businesses or to local charities can help you build trust and earn the admiration of your followers. You can encourage conversation by asking questions like these:

  1. Will you be attending the Fourth of July celebration?
  2. What the last community event you attended?

Another option is to include an open call to action at the end, something like “We hope you’ll stop by and check out our booth! There’s a free gift in it for you!”

#5: Ask about DIY Projects

Whatever industry or niche you’re in, the chances are good that your followers have some DIY experiences that are relevant. Asking about them is a great way to learn about potential customers and build a warm rapport with them by responding to what they share.

Ideally, a DIY project should be something that uses (or could use) your products. However, it doesn’t have to be. The key is to find a way to make what you post relevant to your brand – and then stand back and let your followers do the rest.

#6: Ask Open Questions

Asking questions is one of the best ways to get your followers talking. It’s especially helpful to you if you can get them talking in a way that helps you to learn more about them – because that’s information you can use to create future content.

For example, if you’re targeting small business owners, you could ask questions like:

  1. What’s your biggest challenge as a business owner?
  2. What problem do you wish someone would solve for you?
  3. What product or service has helped you the most?

The answers to these questions can help you write blog posts, create a social media strategy, or even develop new products that are ideal for your target audience.

#7: Ask for Testimonials

You already know that reviews and testimonials are hugely important in the world of marketing. What better way to get some new testimonials to share on your site than to ask your customers to provide them on social media?

Not only will asking for opinions help you get some positive testimonials, it may also help you discover potential issues and nip them in the bud before they become big problems. You should be prepared for some surprises – but if you approach the request with the right mindset, this technique can help you learn a lot about your customers.

Look who’s talking… 

The bottom line is that your audience wants to talk to you. They don’t read your blog or follow you on social media because they’re looking for a lecture. The key is to give them the encouragement they need to share their thoughts, experiences, and opinions with you – and then, to stand back and listen to what they say.



Tons Of Facebook Groups To Use For Advertising Your Business Or Offer

1 https://www.facebook.com/groups/funkiosk/  2 https://www.facebook.com/groups/WAQARBUTT/  3 https://www.facebook.com/groups/377201552378116/  4 https://www.facebook.com/groups/152210834987248/  5 https://www.facebook.com/groups/291301707575188/  6 https://www.facebook.com/groups/EntertainmentWorldWideNetwork/  7 https://www.facebook.com/groups/entertainment.kolkata.adda/  8 https://www.facebook.com/groups/EntertainmentRWeINC/  9 https://www.facebook.com/groups/phoenixentubcity/ 
1 https://www.facebook.com/groups/entertainmentrwe/  2 https://www.facebook.com/groups/198662396894434/  3 https://www.facebook.com/groups/BigShottEntertainment/  4 https://www.facebook.com/groups/215831715095691/  5 https://www.facebook.com/groups/karthickyuvi.hearts/  6 https://www.facebook.com/groups/teambntmusic/  7 https://www.facebook.com/groups/266268176738728/  8 https://www.facebook.com/groups/180808592042543/  9 https://www.facebook.com/groups/200741439938750/  10 https://www.facebook.com/groups/405152876200843/  11 https://www.facebook.com/groups/TheMostWantedTalent/  12 https://www.facebook.com/groups/135902869906688/  13 https://www.facebook.com/groups/132988126807830/  14 https://www.facebook.com/groups/131981226876017/  15 https://www.facebook.com/groups/Burnout.Entertainment/  16 https://www.facebook.com/groups/481175378590486/  17 https://www.facebook.com/groups/kingofclubs757/  18 https://www.facebook.com/groups/292427490772543/  19 https://www.facebook.com/groups/LinkliveEnt/  20 https://www.facebook.com/groups/533631233320692/  21 https://www.facebook.com/groups/341207559244009/ 

1 https://www.facebook.com/groups/2207893888/ 
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 14 https://www.facebook.com/groups/GlobalBusinessMarketing/ 
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 56 https://www.facebook.com/groups/residualincome/ 
 57 https://www.facebook.com/groups/ExcitingAds/ 
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14 https://www.facebook.com/groups/freetrafficplaces/ 
 15 https://www.facebook.com/groups/gymote/ 
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 35 https://www.facebook.com/groups/HowToGetMore/ 
 36 https://www.facebook.com/groups/MakeMarketingEasy/ 
 37 https://www.facebook.com/groups/150618686695/ 
Internet marketing  
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 11 https://www.facebook.com/groups/networkingandcreatingwealth/ 
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 19 https://www.facebook.com/groups/steveshoemaker/ 
 20 https://www.facebook.com/groups/NewbieMarketing/ 
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Online marketing  
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Like club  
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Make money  
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7 https://www.facebook.com/groups/145340115613/  8 https://www.facebook.com/groups/VMMFH/  9 https://www.facebook.com/groups/151048711602895/  10 https://www.facebook.com/groups/MarketingandSocialMedia1/ 
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Create Financial Independence With Just $5 per day

Create Financial Independence With 5 Dollars a Day
Creating income streams of just $5 per day is a great way to secure your financial future. Maybe $5 doesn’t sound like very much, but if you do the math, you’ll find it’s over $1,800 a year. Think about what would happen if you could set up one of these income streams each month in your spare time.
It can be intimidating to create and implement an idea that can make millions, but no one is intimidated at the prospect of making $5!
Following this process will get you well on your way to additional income streams:

1.Make a list of ideas that will allow you to make $5 a day online. It’s important to maintain a list of good ideas. Make an initial list of at least 25 items and attempt to add a few more each day. That way, you’ll always have a source of ideas that you can immediately put into action. A few examples include: Write an eBook and sell it on Amazon.com.
Make a video showing how to do something. It can be as simple as how to prune a rosebush. Post it on YouTube.com and make money via YouTube’s advertising program.
Build a website about your favorite movie star and make money selling related items on Amazon.com or your own selling platform. You can sign up at Amazon.com to make commissions on any items your leads buy from them.
Sell your world famous apple pie recipe on a site such as Fiverr.com.

The list of possible ideas is nearly endless. Try to come up with ideas that require little time and not much initial expenditure. The whole idea is to get a bunch of these $5 streams going simultaneously.
Continuously ask yourself, “What do I know that might be valuable to someone else? How can I monetize it?”

2.Grab the best idea from the list and get busy. In most cases, it should take roughly 20 hours of work to put a single idea into action. That might take a week or two, depending on your schedule and level of motivation. Some ideas will take longer to implement than others. And some ideas might require more marketing time than others.
Avoid spending too much time. You never know for certain what’s going to work and what isn’t. Many ideas will fail to produce a single dollar. But several of your ideas will produce far more than $5 per day. The $5 average isn’t difficult to attain.

3.Stay focused on one project until it’s 100% complete. Many people think they must have a spectacular idea to make a decent amount of money. You actually just need a decent idea and effective implementation. Someone somewhere is making $1 million a year retreading tires and someone else is doing just as well selling paperclips. See your $5 project through until it’s fully implemented. Then start another and do the same thing.
Create a schedule for yourself. Avoid the mindset of just throwing whatever free time you have at your projects. Schedule your project time.

4.Occasionally consider how you might adjust your completed projects that are already successful. A simple tweak might cause the project to do even better.

5.Think about some simple ways you can save $5 every day. Saving $5 is just as
good as earning $5. Then, take that $5 and invest it.
It doesn’t require a million dollar idea to become financially comfortable. You simply need several five-dollar ideas that you can implement quickly and leave on autopilot while implementing additional ideas.
That “measly” $5 a day really adds up. If you could implement 25 ideas that average $5 per day for each, it would total $125 a day. That’s over $45,000 per year of essentially passive income! Get started on your $5 ideas today

The Smart Way to Choose an Affiliate Product for Passive Income

The Smart Way to Choose an Affiliate Product for Passive Income
Finding a good product to sell when trying to earn passive income can be difficult, but it’s important to your success. There are literally thousands of products to choose from and the competition amongst sellers can be fierce.
Finding a niche and product is the most difficult part of affiliate marketing.
Follow these steps when choosing an affiliate product:

1.Find something that interests you. Avoid choosing a single affiliate product, developing a web page, and then starting all over again with a totally different product. Instead, consider creating a series of websites and products within the same niche. Think about what interests you. Is there a topic on which you’d consider yourself to be an expert?
Since you’ll be spending a lot of time on your niche, choose something you like that could also be profitable.
A good niche will have multiple products available. Give your customers some choices. If you’re selling diet products, give them several to choose from. You can link your websites together and create your own little community.

2.Check out the competition. There will be others trying to sell the same products as you. Search online and see how stiff the competition is. Most affiliate programs have a metric that describes how well a product is selling.

Ideally, you would want to find some products that are selling well, but have minimal competition.

3.Think about the timeframe. Based on the level of competition, create a timeframe for success. Avoid picking something that requires more time and effort than you have.

4.Be concerned about the sales page. Even a fantastic product is difficult to sell without a great sales page. Though it’s possible to create your own sales page, it’s easier to send prospects to the one provided by the company that creates the product. Ask yourself if the page looks professional and makes you interested in owning the product yourself.

5.Look at the payout. How much will you be making per sale? How many sales do you estimate? Some products sell for $10, while others can sell for over $1,000. The commissions can range from 1% to 75% or more.

6.Does the product have staying power? Some products morph over time. For instance, Apple releases a new iPhone every year or so. A good passive income product won’t require you to rebuild your marketing machine each year. There are products that have been sold for many years in the exact same format.

7.Evaluate your results. Any decent affiliate product site will allow you to evaluate your web traffic. If you’re getting others to come to your affiliate sales page, but no one is buying, you either need a new sales page or a different product. It’s possible that those who visit your site are looking for information, rather than looking to make a purchase.
Find a way to entice those who are coming to your site, but aren’t clicking
on your links.

Choosing good products is the first step to becoming an effective affiliate marketer. A good product makes it much easier to be successful. Find a popular niche and good products. Before you know it, you’ll be making a killing in the world of affiliate marketing.

Where To Find Funding For Your Brilliant Business Idea

Where to Find Financial Support for Your Brilliant Startup Idea
Your amazing business idea may need funds to be successful. However, it’s not easy to finance a startup in a sea of competitors. 
Consider many sources for your startup funds:

1.Use your own finances. Instead of getting a loan or borrowing from others, see if you can finance your startup with funds you save or gather. Do you have savings that can be used to fund your new business?
Do you have items or services you can sell to raise money? This may take awhile, but you might feel more comfortable delaying the launch of your company a bit while you earn the money to get it started.

2.Ask friends and family to help. Do your family and friends think that the startup idea is a good investment that will bring high returns? If you have support from these sources, they might be interested in loaning you the startup funds or investing in your new business. Your friends or family members can become lenders, partners, or investors in the startup.
They can contribute to the financial side, but they may also want to be involved in other areas. It’s important to negotiate an arrangement that you feel comfortable with.

3.Use crowdfunding. There are multiple online crowdfunding platforms, such as Peerbackers, Kickstarter, Indiegogo, RocketHub, and others, that can help you raise money. These websites let you share your startup idea with the public. Then, the public can donate money in return for items, services, or a share in the company, One key to success on a crowdfunding platform is to have a unique story.
You can raise money for your startup and introduce your product or service at the same time.
Keep in mind that these platforms are filled with competitors, and it’s not easy to get all the funding you need. A successful campaign on these platforms usually includes social media and marketing efforts.
4.Enter startup contests. Big brands and investors sometimes have contests for startups. These contests put you in front of big names who are interested in investing. They help you get recognition while you learn from other startups. You also have the chance to fine-tune your ideas to make them more appealing to investors.
5.Seek angel investors. Angel investors want to help new companies and make a profit in the long term. They have large sources of money, so your startup may be able to get all of its funding in one area. Angel investors tend to ask for a portion of your company or shares. They may ask to be partners or have control over startup decisions.
Because of their financial commitment, they have a vested interest in your success and want to ensure that your new business brings in high returns.
6.Consider financial institution loans. Banks, credit unions, and other sources may offer you a business or personal loan to fund your idea. They may require collateral and ask detailed financial records and other information about the startup. Small business loans are a popular choice among startups.
Before you get a loan, consider the fees and interest on the loan.

What if your business doesn’t bring in enough profit to repay the loan? How will you repay it? It’s important to have a Plan B.
Launching a startup is an exciting time! Follow a profitable business plan and keep your eye on the profits so your new business can repay the startup funds as soon as possible and move on to providing you the returns you deserve.

Big Reasons Why Your Website Should Be Mobile Phone Accessible

Why Your Website Must Be Mobile Friendly (Now More Than Ever!)

Did you know that 4 out of 5 consumers now use smartphones to shop? Let’s face it, nowadays just simply having a website is no longer enough for your business to truly connect with consumers online. People are accessing the internet from desktops, laptops, tablets, and mobile phones. Your customers are using mobile devices to search for businesses in their area and to shop online.


Having a mobile website can make a big difference in how many customers find and interact with your business. The use of mobile phones to browse the internet isn’t new, but it continues to rise, making a mobile website more and more important for businesses who want to stay on top of the market.





Why being Mobile Friendly Is Important for Your Business

Studies show, the average consumer is spending more time browsing and utilizing the web on a mobile device vs. on a desktop or laptop. Tablets and phones can be conveniently carried around and accessed instantly.   How often have you seen someone looking at their phone while waiting for a bus, sitting in a restaurant, or taking a break from work? All of those moments are opportunities for your business if you have a mobile friendly website.





Some Statistics to Think About

In a 2014 study, ad network InMobi found that in the United States people are spending more time accessing the internet through their mobile devices than through their PCs. This means that if your business’s website is designed only for PCs, you’re missing out on over half of the market. Furthermore, about one in three online searches are now conducted through mobile devices. People use their phones when they are out and about and looking for a local service. If your website comes up in their search results and is easy to access, you might gain an immediate new customer.


A recent study by iAcquire found that 70% of mobile online searches result with an action taken within less than an hour of the search. This means that mobile searches are a more effective way of reaching customers than desktop searches, and can quickly result in new customer interactions and sales.





Connect with Customers Where They Already Are

Nowadays it’s pretty much second nature for just about everyone to use their phone to access the internet. No matter where your customer is, simply by having a website that is easy to access on mobile a device, you are making it easier for customers browse your website and find what they need and take the next action. 


Whether it’s your business phone number, information about your products or services or it’s directions to your business. They can browse your website with ease and quickly find what they are looking for – and that’s the bottom line.  Mobile websites make it easier for consumers to get the information they want. 






Mobile Websites Create a Better User Experience

In a brick & mortar business, whether it’s a restaurant or retail store, the better and more comfortable the experience is for a customer, the more likely he or she is to stay for longer and ultimately buy something. The same is true for websites. If a website is difficult to navigate or slow to load, an internet user is highly likely to close it and look elsewhere. Standard websites can work on mobile devices, but they are usually ungainly. They are meant to be viewed on a large PC screen and become distorted and slow when viewed through a smaller mobile device.


Mobile sites, on the other hand, are designed specifically to be used easily on a cell phone or tablet. That means that users won’t have to spend time scrolling, pinching or zooming to find the information they want. They are also smaller in file size as well and will typically load faster on mobile devices.  This is good because a fast load time will decrease the chances that a person will get impatient and click the back button and go to your competitor.  Mobile websites make for a more pleasant viewing experience and faster navigation, which can ultimately result in better business.





So What Type of Mobile Site Is Right For You?

To further complicate things, there are multiple types of mobile websites. The best option for you will depend on the size of your business and the kinds of services you offer. Here’s a quick guide that breaks down the differences between the different types, and some pros and cons to think about. 





Dedicated Mobile Website

A dedicated mobile design, simply put, is a secondary website that is specifically geared toward and designed for mobile devices. So instead of using one website that is only compatible for larger monitors on desktop and laptop computers, you can opt for second (mobile) site to accommodate the consumer on the go. To see an example, check out mobile.nytimes.com. When a user accesses nytimes.com site from a mobile device, the site detects that they are using a mobile device and redirects them to the mobile version of the website.


This is a good option if your business does not need a ton of pages and you simply want to direct people to a physical business location and provide easy to access contact information.  It’s also a great way to get started if you don’t want to upgrade to a new responsive website.


Dedicated mobile designs are faster and operate better with mobile devices than responsive web designs, which focus on a variety of devices instead of just mobile devices. This is due to the fact that the workload is not through the phone, but rather with the server that the device is connected. Another advantage of dedicated mobile sites is that you can add custom “mobile only” features like a “click to call” button or “click for directions” which gives your customers the ability to quickly interact with your business and set your business apart from your competitors  


Images and content are typically much easier to view on mobile devices than with desktop standard websites. The downside, of course, is that you won’t some of the features or be able to really engage with customers through your mobile site as you would with a responsive design.


The main drawback with a dedicated mobile site is that you must build and maintain two separate sites: one for traditional desktops & laptops and one for mobile devices. This can take extra time and resources.






Responsive Design

Responsive web design works differently than dedicated mobile sites. Rather than having a separate desktop and mobile site, with responsive web design, you can have one site that automatically adapts and resizes itself to fit any device. Responsive sites use a fluid, proportions-based grid to adjust to the screen size of the device a user is viewing it on.  For an example, see www.ancestry.com


So why go responsive?  First of all Google prefers responsive design over other options. With the big “G” dominating over 67% of the search market, it may pay to keep that in mind when making your decision.  According to Google responsive websites are more efficient for the Google bot to crawl, index and organize all the content online.  With responsive websites, you simply have one URL and the same HTML across all devices. (As opposed to having a desktop version, and a mobile version) When you have 2 versions of a website it forces Google to crawl and index multiple versions of the same website.  But it’s also been said by Google that it’s best to opt for the solution that provides a better experience for the user. So take that with a grain of salt.  


Secondly, it’s is where the industry going.  Right now, responsive design is still in the infancy stages in many ways but that’s not stopping some of the largest companies in the world from making the transition to a responsive design.  Companies like:



Tech Crunch


Reliable Soft


It’s estimated that more than 5 billion people will be using a mobile device by the year 2017. 


“It’s not a matter of if you will need a responsive design, it’s just a matter of when”


The main drawback is if you want to make your website responsive, you are going to need a new website designed and developed.  Yes, technically it is “possible” to keep your existing design while making your site responsive, we don't recommend it for a multitude of reasons. But the biggest reason is that your old website wasn’t originally designed to be responsive, which can cause a lot of headaches when trying to make it responsive vs. biting the bullet, upgrading to a responsive website and staying ahead of your competition.  So if you are in love with your current website, it may be a better idea to go with a dedicated mobile website for now and upgrade to a responsive design later on






Reviewing Your Site

Once you have built your mobile site, you will want to ensure that it looks exactly the way you want it to. Using tools like Google Chrome’s Emulator or Adobe’s Edge Inspect will emulate your mobile site on a number of different devices so you can make sure it’s functioning properly.  





How to choose the best options for your business?

This question is kind of like those psychology ink blot tests, is that the answer is different for each person.  Neither option is wrong.  Which is why you should consider your business goals and choose the option that meets your needs the most.   

Are you going to be updating you content frequently?  Then responsive design may be the option that suites your needs best.  Would you like a more customized mobile experience?  Then a dedicated mobile site could be the right solution for you.  

So when you are ready to make a decision keep these three things in mind – Your business goals, your budget, and what option will work best for your customer.

7 tips that will help you use Linkedin to boost your business growth



LinkedIn is one of the peculiarities of the social networking experiment. It’s not ubiquitous like Facebook, Twitter or even Pinterest. Yet, it has found a niche all its own, as a business tool, and particularly for small to mid range companies who want to network and reach their intended market.


The only problem you might be facing is, how do I use this tool—seemingly with unlimited possibilities—specifically to promote my business?  We’re going to break down seven strategies that can’t fail you.


  1. Make Valuable Connections

Like any social networking site, the ultimate goal of LinkedIn is to connect people and allow you to network your brand to new leads, or new business associates that can help you. While you may only find a few friends and associates based on email searching, you can take advantage of LinkedIn Groups, and connect to people in your niche industry or in local and regional locations.  You can also used the Advanced Search option to target a specific market and find people, companies and industries of interest by keyword. 


  1. Build Your Authority by Showcasing Your Knowledge

Publicizing your name under the guise of answering simple questions is a great way to generate brand awareness, and also get a keen insight into the mind of your potential customers.

A few years ago, posting articles on online directories was a fairly good way to prove your authority. However, it wasn’t long before VIPs in the search engine industry realized that the lack of interaction between writer and readers was less than impressive. 

The truth is, people are far less inclined to believe someone who gives a speech, than a person who takes unscripted questions and has the ability to reply.  This shows your potential leads and associates that you know your industry well enough to interact with the public in an objective and neutral way, and also gives you the opportunity to repeat your name and brand publicly without link spamming.  In general practice, avoid just talking about your opinion and instead quote reputable sources and include your own expertise.  Leave your answer open-ended so as to encourage more conversation and perhaps make more connections.


  1. Get Endorsements on Linkedin

A recent study from Dimen-sional Research shows that positive endorsements from sites like Yelp, Angie’s List, & Amazon influence a decision almost 90% of the time.


Endorsements are easier for a connection on LinkedIn to put in a positive word in for you without going to the trouble of writing a recommendation.


These endorsements are like reviews for your small business.  You can use them to build up your business’s reputation.  Plus endorsements can lead to recommendations which we’ll talk about below.  


  1. Get Recommended and Build Authority

The age old saying that you should “let someone else say it” rather than saying it yourself proves true in online marketing. It always has.


People are more persuaded by word of mouth, by the seemingly objective endorsement of other people.


This shows your audience that your service or product is great enough to earn other people’s recommendations. Recommendations are like referrals, and referrals are gold!  Best of all, LinkedIn’s recommendations appear on your page, and even better, they cannot be forged. 

  1. Host an Event and Keep People Up to Date

Hosting an event via LinkedIn lets you build awareness for your brand and also generate additional leads, since the event is advertised to your network. The Event Platform is easy to work with and helps you “promote the event” by asking questions about your purposes and subject. Online RSVP will help you keep in touch with your most important targets, and the announcement also shows up on their page. 


LinkedIn has an Events Tool search that lets people find your event based on mutual interest, as well as geographic location and industry. The flexibility of this online tool has resulted in many more links and connections being made, since you are no longer limited to traditional in-person events but can actually organize workshops, virtual webinars, phone conferences, round table discussions and more. One of the hottest strategies right now is to organize a regular monthly event, online or otherwise, and build visibility with your regular audience and with new members that hear about the meeting from LinkedIn announcements from friends of friends. 

Other tips you can try incorporating include:

Creating a logo, using simple and probably free software, that will make it stand out.

Come up with a creative title so that it will capture attention and hopefully be shared (and shared on more social media sites than just LinkedIn)

Always finish with a call to action. We remember this in articles and yet we seem to forget this golden rule in social media. If you don’t tell your audience what to do at the end, they won’t do anything. Always include a strong call to action after advertising a meeting.

Include keywords that describe your industry and reason for the event.

Promote your event in groups, preferably the most relevant groups to the theme of the event. It’s not blatant advertising if you’re providing value

Post about the meeting on your status messages. Remember an active page represents a busy company. Ideally, you tie in the latest company event with your status messages, generating excitement for the event

Much like other social networking sites, the ability to speak openly & candidly is another way you address any issues and provide amazing support to potential customers, so use it wisely.


  1. Use Sponsored Updates

If you are afraid of coming across as an aggressive or too spammy, then using LinkedIn’s Sponsored Updates to reach targeted users can help, and generate greater paid lead generation than many other social media strategies. Recently, HubSpot worked with LinkedIn and reported a 400% lead increase with their targeted audience.


  1. Reach Out and Make the Personal Connection

The biggest mistake people make using LinkedIn and other social pages is to lie back and wait for the traffic to generate.

Particularly because this website is professional and the opposite of the informal Facebook atmosphere, people tend to be suspicious when you add them without explanation. It is better to be proactive and to send personal messages to people before or as you add them. This way you can create the emotional connection that so many companies are missing in an overly optimized and online market.

The best approach to these messages is to look for areas of interest that you might have in common and then write to them personally, not as a form letter. Mention why you are reaching out and create an honest and meaningful message introducing yourself.  HP recently used LinkedIn for greater emotional engagement with its social media audience and reported 300,000 new followers in two months, along with an increased attrition and engagement rate, and even a 2.5 increase in customers who refer the company’s products to friends, family and acquaintances.


The biggest mistake people make using LinkedIn and other social pages is to lie back and wait for the traffic to generate.


Chances are, if someone was searching for you, you have a targeted lead that would not so easily dismiss a personal message. The Who’s Viewed Your Profile option received 76% of respondents’ votes for the best feature of LinkedIn.

As you can see, using LinkedIn has a number of benefits but only if you are willing to use its variety of tools and features consistently… As opposed to blindly posting and visiting once every month.

This doesn’t mean that you have to spend hours at a time that take up your entire day.  Most people couldn’t bear to spend literally hours a day on a social networking site, right?  Err… Sorry Facebook devotees. Make the most of your efforts by spreading out the time you spend on LinkedIn, try to check in daily, or at least a few times a week. This way you can keep your presence consistent, your name ubiquitous and your brand promoted.


Need some more reasons why you should be using LinkedIn? Check out our infographic on our blog by clic