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Why You Should Think About Starting an Online Business

Founding a traditional company is not an easy decision because it usually involves a lot of paper work, legal procedures and on top of that you must invest in many things (office space for starters) in order to start working. On the other hand, starting an online business is much simpler. Entrepreneurs don’t face the traditional business obstacles and provides many opportunities. In case you are still wondering why you should start an online business, we will point out a few good reasons.

One of the greatest advantages of starting an online business is the freedom you will get. Modern technology including mobile devices, laptops, apps and the Internet are some of the tools that can be used in order to start working from any location. It is hard to tell whether someone in the café or the restaurant where you are sitting is not actually working on their business. Imagine a situation where you are drinking your morning coffee in a café and you are doing business. You don’t need to be tied to one location or to work in a certain period of the day (9 to 5). This is something that can motivate any individual to work harder. In addition, you will have more time to spend with your family and friends and organize your days and weeks as you please.

We have all heard the stories of online businesses that have grown overnight. This is almost impossible in cases of traditional business. It is amazing how easily some new online company can become a real hit. In some cases all you need is a good campaign on social media networks and your new business will become viral. It is very difficult to expand and grow your business, but online businesses have no limitations and they are available for all Internet users.

As we have mentioned before, an online business will give you an opportunity to eliminate most of the expenses that are related to traditional businesses. For instance, you won’t have to buy or rent some expensive office space and worry about its location. In addition, you also won’t need a warehouse where you will store your goods. It is very difficult to manage the stock when you have a brick and mortar store. You need to have room for new products and you will be forced to provide discounts in order to sell these products. Online business is much simpler and the cut in the expenses allows business owners to lower the price of their products and services.

Finally, another thing that should encourage you to start an online business is the chance to run your business all the time without any limitations. There is no working time – your business is opened 24/7 even when you are not awake. What is even better, you have access to the world market, without any geographical limitations.

In order to make progress, you will need to design a good business plan which will include marketing strategies and social media presence. Of course, you will also need to invest some money in your website. However, all these things have high ROI and if everything goes well, you will expand your business fast.

How to Establish Business Credit for Your New LLC

Most business owners use credit for business expenses, including buying equipment and inventory. Unfortunately, most are using their personal credit cards and loans. While this largely unavoidable when you’re just starting out, it’s definitely risky. Personally guaranteeing business loans and credit accounts means you are completely liable for the debts. If your business is sued or you cannot pay back the debts, it will be you that is responsible — not the business.

While it’s possible to establish business credit for a sole proprietorship, it’s much harder to do because your business is not a separate entity. The easiest way to get started on establishing credit for your business is forming a limited liability company or LLC. Forming an LLC protects you and other owners from being personally liable for business debt and it establishes a clear separation between the owners and the business — one of the first steps to establishing business credit.

Steps to Establish Business Credit

These are the basic steps you will need to follow to establish a business credit history in the name of your business.

1. Form an LLC. The first step is forming your LLC to create a legal entity that is separate from the owners.

2. Get a federal tax identification number. Next, request an EIN, which works like a Social Security number for your LLC. You will need an EIN for federal tax filings and to open a bank account for your LLC.

3. Open a bank account. You will also need to open a business bank account in the name of your LLC. Make sure you pay business expenses from this account, not your personal account, or you risk “piercing the corporate veil,” which means it may be ruled that your LLC is not managed as separate from your personal assets.

4. Get a business phone number. Your business will need its own phone number in the LLC’s name.

5. Open a credit file. You will need to open a credit file with the three main credit reporting agencies: TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian.

6. Obtain business credit cards. The fastest and easiest way to start establishing credit in your LLC’s name is applying for business credit cards that report to the agencies above. You will need to provide your EIN to apply. Examples of business credit cards include the American Express SimplyCash and the Chase Ink Cash cards.

7. Establish a line of credit. It’s also important to establish credit lines with vendors and suppliers that you work with. Just as with personal credit, it’s important to have a mix of credit types on your business credit file. Ask your vendors to report your payment history to the credit bureaus.

8. Pay on time. Finally, make sure your bills are paid on time as late payments will hurt your LLC’s credit.

Establishing good credit history as soon as possible is important for several reasons. It positions you to get more favorable payment terms with new vendors and it helps you secure better terms when you need business loans. The first step is forming an LLC. You can learn more about forming a limited liability company by consulting with an attorney or business services company.

5 Types of Businesses That Can Benefit From A Blog and How

Even though internet and social media marketing are growing at an unbelievable rate, many small business owners still do not understand the value of having a blog on their business website. Larger businesses are more frequently taking full advantage of this growing marketing opportunity, and many of them are seeing amazing results, but smaller companies tend to think that such marketing tactics are out of their realm. This could not be more wrong…

The truth is, small businesses can benefit just as much from maintaining a regular blog, if not even more. The reason for this is that much of the internet marketing that exists today has much more to do with connecting with consumers than it does pushing people to buy products, although sales no doubt result if internet marketing is done right. In a world of a huge internet culture, consumers want to engage with information about products, and that is what a blog can help a company’s prospective customers do. There are five types of businesses in particular that can benefit from a quality blog.

1. Motels – A blog is a great way for smaller motels and specialty lodgings to market their business, particularly during off-season when everyone is competing for guests. In addition to featuring information about the property itself, a motel blog could include area information, information about special events, and of course any upcoming specials.

2. Law Firms – You might not think that law firms have to use marketing to reach out to potential clients, but be assured, the smart ones do. There is major competition for lawyers, especially in larger cities, so making an extra effort to gain clients doesn’t hurt. Law firm blogs should contain information on different types of law practice, posts about specific issues that require the attention of an attorney, and answers to common questions clients might have.

3. Restaurants – Perhaps the most likely to benefit from a well-maintained blog are restaurants. There is so much information restaurants can share with readers, whom you want to be future customers. Diners love going to a restaurant’s website to research the types of food they serve, specials, and upcoming events. A restaurant blog should contain all of this and more.

4. Service Businesses – While corporate service businesses may not need a blog so much, independently owned service businesses do. In the age of information, anyone hiring a service provider does their research first, which is why sites like Angie’s List exist. But, it’s even more beneficial for companies to take matters into their own hands as well. These businesses should blog about service specific issues, as well as the company itself.

5. Real Estate Agencies – Last but certainly not least are real estate agencies. Buying a home is a big step in many people’s lives, one that makes many people quite nervous. Allowing potential clients the opportunity to “get to know” a company helps alleviate some of that fear. A real estate blog can feature posts about specific properties, tips on home care, and local information, and potential clients will love it.

A blog is an amazing marketing tool that more and more small businesses are beginning to take advantage of. If you don’t think you can maintain a blog for your business do yourself and your business a favor and hire a copywriter to manage your blog for you. You know how much business it can bring you until you give it a try.