Friday, August 14th, 2020
now browsing by day
Are you looking for a merchant cash advance bad credit notwithstanding? A merchant cash advance is a way to get money for your business quickly. You do so by borrowing against your future credit card sales. Because your personal credit score does not matter, you really can get a merchant cash advance bad credit or any kind of credit.
One thing about a merchant cash advance bad credit is that it is probably not going to be helpful during an economic downturn. They may even be impossible to get during a recession. But in a better economy, they are a proven way to fund a business and keep your doors open.
How Do These Loans Work?
These loans use your past and current credit card history to determine how much financing you can get approval for.
Money is advanced to you. The amount has a basis in how much you process each month in credit card transactions.
How Do You Pay a Merchant Cash Advance Bad Credit Back?
A small portion of each future credit card sale goes towards paying back the merchant advance loan. It does not interfere with your cash and check receipts.
There are no fixed repayment amounts or terms for merchant cash and capital. So this gives flexibility to your business if you are having a slow month.
One of the best benefits of merchant advances is you can get money in your bank account. So you can get it as soon as 24 hours after approval.
Why is a Merchant Cash Advance Bad Credit So Great?
The chief benefit of a merchant cash advance bad credit is you do not have to have good credit to qualify. These loans leverage your positive credit card processing history to get you approval, not your credit scores.
There are some credit score restrictions, but in most cases, you can get approval with even below average personal credit scores.
And there is no personal guarantee necessary. Plus, no collateral is necessary.
Demolish your funding problems with 27 killer ways to get cash for your business.
How Much Can You Get from a Merchant Cash Advance Bad Credit or Not?
You can get merchant loans for up to $150,000. How much you process in credit card transactions each month will determine how much you will get approval for.
So, every business has its strengths and weaknesses.
Do you use credit cards as a payment source for your clients? If so, then a merchant advance can be the perfect way for you to get a lot of money in a short period of time.
These loans are available for businesses that process as low as $3,500 monthly in credit card transactions. So the more you process, the higher advance loan you will get approval for.
What Are the Fees for a Merchant Cash Advance Bad Credit?
So there are no application fees and there are no out of pocket costs for merchant cash advance relief.
And you can use the funds for payroll, marketing, or to increase business inventory. Get a loan to pay taxes, pay rent, or for advertising. So, try a loan to order supplies and equipment. Or you can expand your business and open an additional location. Or you can use the funds for working capital.
An Alternative to a Merchant Cash Advance Bad Credit or Not – Building Business Credit
Company credit is credit in a small business’s name. It doesn’t link to an entrepreneur’s personal credit, not even if the owner is a sole proprietor and the only employee of the company.
As a result, an entrepreneur’s business and personal credit scores can be quite different.
Because small business credit is distinct from consumer, it helps to protect a business owner’s personal assets, in the event of litigation or business bankruptcy.
Also, with two distinct credit scores, a business owner can get two different cards from the same vendor. This effectively doubles buying power.
Another benefit is that even startup businesses can do this. Visiting a bank for a business loan can be a recipe for frustration. But building company credit, when done right, is a plan for success.
Consumer credit scores depend upon payments but also additional considerations like credit usage percentages.
But for business credit, the scores actually merely hinge on if a company pays its debts on time.
Establishing small business credit is a process. It does not happen automatically. A business needs to proactively work to establish small business credit.
Yet, it can be done readily and quickly, and it is much speedier than developing consumer credit scores.
Merchants are a big component of this process.
Doing the steps out of order leads to repetitive rejections. No one can start at the top with small business credit. For example, you can’t start with retail or cash credit from your bank. If you do, you’ll get a rejection 100% of the time.
Demolish your funding problems with 27 killer ways to get cash for your business.
A small business needs to be fundable to loan providers and vendors.
That’s why, a business needs a professional-looking website and e-mail address. And it needs to have site hosting bought from a vendor like GoDaddy.
Also, business phone and fax numbers need to have a listing on 411. You can do that here: http://www.listyourself.net.
In addition, the business telephone number should be toll-free (800 exchange or comparable).
A business also needs a bank account devoted solely to it, and it must have all of the licenses necessary for operating.
These licenses all have to be in the perfect, appropriate name of the business. And they must have the same small business address and phone numbers.
So note, that this means not just state licenses, but potentially also city licenses.
Visit the IRS web site and get an EIN for the business. They’re free of charge. Pick a business entity like corporation, LLC, etc.
A business may begin as a sole proprietor. But they absolutely need to switch to a sort of corporation or an LLC.
This is to minimize risk. And it will make best use of tax benefits.
A business entity matters when it concerns taxes and liability in case of litigation. A sole proprietorship means the entrepreneur is it when it comes to liability and taxes. No one else is responsible.
The best thing to do is to incorporate. You should only look at a DBA as an interim step on the way to incorporation.
Setting off the Business Credit Reporting Process
Begin at the D&B website and get a cost-free D-U-N-S number. A D-U-N-S number is how D&B gets a company into their system, to produce a PAYDEX score. If there is no D-U-N-S number, then there is no record and no PAYDEX score.
Once in D&B’s system, search Equifax and Experian’s sites for the small business. You can do this at www.creditsuite.com/reports. If there is a record with them, check it for correctness and completeness. If there are no records with them, go to the next step in the process.
In this way, Experian and Equifax have activity to report on.
Starter Vendor Credit
First you should build tradelines that report. Then you’ll have an established credit profile, and you’ll get a business credit score.
And with an established business credit profile and score you can start to get credit for numerous purposes, and from all sorts of places.
These sorts of accounts have the tendency to be for things bought all the time, like marketing materials, shipping boxes, outdoor work wear, ink and toner, and office furniture.
But to start with, what is trade credit? These trade lines are credit issuers who give you starter credit when you have none now. Terms are generally Net 30, rather than revolving.
Hence, if you get an approval for $1,000 in vendor credit and use all of it, you must pay that money back in a set term, like within 30 days on a Net 30 account.
Net 30 accounts need to be paid in full within 30 days. 60 accounts need to be paid fully within 60 days. In comparison with revolving accounts, you have a set time when you must pay back what you borrowed or the credit you made use of.
To kick off your business credit profile the proper way, you ought to get approval for vendor accounts that report to the business credit reporting bureaus. When that’s done, you can then use the credit.
Then pay back what you used, and the account is on report to Dun & Bradstreet, Experian, or Equifax.
Vendor Credit – It Helps
Not every vendor can help in the same way true starter credit can. These are vendors that grant approval with a minimum of effort. You also need them to be reporting to one or more of the big three CRAs: Dun & Bradstreet, Equifax, and Experian.
As you get starter credit, you can also start to get credit from retailers. This is to continue to confirm you are trustworthy and pay on time. Here are some stellar choices from us: https://www.creditsuite.com/blog/5-vendor-accounts-that-build-your-business-credit/
Store credit comes from a variety of retail businesses.
You must use your Social Security Number and date of birth on these applications for verification purposes. For credit checks and guarantees, use the company’s EIN on these credit applications.
Fleet credit is from service providers where you can purchase fuel, and repair and take care of vehicles. You must use your Social Security Number and date of birth on these applications for verification purposes. For credit checks and guarantees, make certain to apply using the company’s EIN.
These are companies such as Visa and MasterCard. You must use your Social Security Number and date of birth on these applications for verification purposes. For credit checks and guarantees, use your EIN instead.
These are typically MasterCard credit cards.
Monitor Your Business Credit
Know what is happening with your credit. Make certain it is being reported and address any mistakes as soon as possible. Get in the habit of taking a look at credit reports. Dig into the specifics, not just the scores.
At Equifax, you can monitor your account at: www.equifax.com/business/business-credit-monitor-small-business.
Demolish your funding problems with 27 killer ways to get cash for your business.
Fix Your Business Credit
So, what’s all this monitoring for? It’s to challenge any inaccuracies in your records. Mistakes in your credit report(s) can be corrected. But the CRAs usually want you to dispute in a particular way.
Disputing credit report inaccuracies usually means you send a paper letter with copies of any proof of payment with it. These are documents like receipts and cancelled checks. Never send the original copies. Always mail copies and retain the original copies.
Fixing credit report errors also means you precisely spell out any charges you challenge. Make your dispute letter as understandable as possible. Be specific about the problems with your report. Use certified mail to have proof that you sent in your dispute.
A Word about Building Business Credit versus Merchant Cash Advances
Always use credit smartly! Never borrow beyond what you can pay off. Monitor balances and deadlines for repayments. Paying on time and in full does more to raise business credit scores than pretty much anything else.
Establishing company credit pays. Great business credit scores help a company get loans. Your lender knows the business can pay its debts. They know the small business is authentic.
The business’s EIN connects to high scores and loan providers won’t feel the need to demand a personal guarantee.
Takeaways for Getting a Merchant Cash Advance Bad Credit No Problem
Merchant cash advances are a creative way to leverage future sales. They can help your business get past a financial hurdle. And don’t forget about building company credit! Because even when business cash advances are hard to get, you can build business credit. And your merchant cash advance bad credit could even be enhanced by business credit.
COVID-19 wreaked havoc on the world’s economy. Business owners are helpless as they watch their businesses slip away. It can seem like there are no options, but there are. Do you know how to finance a business? There are lots of options, regardless of what the economy is like?
Best Options for How to Finance a Business
The economy changes direction much like the wind. It’s just the way of the world. Still, none of us have ever seen anything quite like COVID-19 before. Things may never truly be the same, which means adapting to a new normal is going to be vital. You can’t adapt the way you do business however, if you can’t afford to do business at all. You need to know how to finance a business regardless of the economy.
How to Finance a Business: Credit Line Hybrid
One of the best options for how to fund a business is the credit line hybrid. This is revolving, unsecured financing. It allows you to fund your business without putting up collateral, and you only pay back what you use.
You do need good personal credit. It should be at least 680. In addition, there can’t be any liens, judgments, bankruptcies or late payments. Furthermore, in the past 6 months you should have less than 4 credit inquiries, and you should have less than a 45% balance on all business and personal credit cards. It’s also preferred that you have established business credit as well as personal credit.
If you do not meet all of the requirements, it’s okay. You can take on a credit partner that meets each of these requirements. Many business owners work with a friend or relative to fund their business. If a relative or a friend meets all of these requirements, they can partner with you to allow you to tap into their credit to access funding.
Get up to $150,000 in financing so your business can thrive.
Why is a Credit Line Hybrid Awesome?
There are many benefits to using a credit line hybrid. First, it is unsecured, meaning you do not have to have any collateral. Next, the funding is “no-doc.” This means you do not have to provide any bank statements or financials.
Not only that, but typically approval is up to 5x that of the highest credit limit on the personal credit report. Additionally, often you can get interest rates as low as 0% for the first few months, allowing you to put that savings back into your business.
The process is pretty fast, especially with a qualified expert to walk you through it. One other benefit is this. With the approval for multiple credit cards, competition is created. This makes it easier, and likely even if you handle the credit responsibly, that you can get interest rates lowered and limits raised every few months.
How to Finance a Business: Credit Cards
Don’t discount credit cards when considering how to finance a business. In fact, they are probably the easiest and fastest source of funds to help keep you afloat right now. You have to be smart, and you have to be responsible, but they are definitely a legit option.
Brex Card for Startups
This Brex Card has no yearly fee. You will not need to supply your Social Security number to apply. Also, you will not need a personal guarantee. However, this card does not work for every industry.
To determine creditworthiness, Brex checks a company’s cash balance, spending patterns, and investors. Rewards include 7x points on rideshare and 4x on Brex Travel. Also, you can get triple points on restaurants and get double points on recurring software payments. Get 1x points on everything else.
Capital One® Spark® Classic for Business
The Capital One® Spark® Classic for Business is another to check out. It has no annual fee and there is no introductory APR offer. The regular APR is a variable 24.49%. However, you can get unlimited 1% cash back on every purchase for your company and there is no minimum to redeem.
While this card is within reach if you have fair credit scores, beware of the APR. If you can pay promptly, and completely, it’s a good deal.
Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card
The Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card has no annual fee and a 0% introductory APR. After that expires, the APR is a variable 14.74 to 20.74%.
You can earn unlimited 1.5% Cash Back rewards on every purchase made for your company and get $500 bonus cash back after spending $3,000 in the initial 3 months from account opening. You can get rewards for cash back, gift cards, travel and more using Chase Ultimate Rewards®. It takes superb credit to get approval for this card.
Blue Business® Plus Credit Card from American Express
The Blue Business® Plus Credit Card from American Express also has no no annual fee and a 0% introductory APR for the first year. After that, the APR is a variable 14.74 to 20.74%.
You can get double Membership Rewards® points on everyday business purchases like office supplies or client dinners. This applies to the first $50,000 spent each year. You get 1 point per dollar after that. You will need great to exceptional credit to qualify.
American Express® Blue Business Cash Card
Another one to look into is the American Express® Blue Business Cash Card. Note: the American Express® Blue Business Cash Card is identical to the Blue Business® Plus Credit Card from American Express. However, its rewards are in cash instead of points. You get 2% cash back on all eligible purchases up to $50,000 per calendar year. After that, it’s 1%.
There is no yearly fee, and there is a 0% introductory APR for the first one year. Afterwards, the APR is a variable 14.74 to 20.74%. You will need great to superb credit to qualify.
Capital One ® Spark® Cash for Business
Check out the Capital One® Spark® Cash for Business. It has an introductory $0 annual fee for the initial year. After that, this card costs $95 per year. There is no introductory APR deal. The regular APR is a variable 18.49%.
You can get a $500 one-time cash bonus after spending $4,000 in the first 3 months from account opening. Get unlimited 2% cash back. Redeem any time without any minimums. You will need great to outstanding credit scores to qualify.
Get up to $150,000 in financing so your business can thrive.
Discover it® Business Card
Another one to check out the Discover it® Business Card. It has no yearly fee. There is an introductory APR of 0% on purchases for twelve months. After that is over, the regular APR is a variable 14.49 to 22.49%.
You get unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases, with no category restrictions or bonuses. Also, they double the 1.5% Cashback Match™ at the end of the first year. There is no minimum spend requirement either.
You can download transactions easily to Quicken, QuickBooks, and Excel. Note: you will need great to exceptional credit to get approval for this card.
Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card
If your normal course of business includes travel, and you think you may return to that once everything calms down, have a look at the Marriott Bonvoy Business™ Card from American Express. It has an annual fee of $125. There is no introductory APR offer. The regular APR is a variable 17.24 — 26.24%. You will need good to outstanding credit to get this card.
Delta SkyMiles® Reserve Business American Express Card
This is a great option if flying is your thing. Even if you don’t fly in the course of business, you can use the rewards for personal travel. Take a vacation from being stuck in your house!
The Delta SkyMiles® Reserve Business American Express Card does have a $550 yearly fee! There is no introductory APR offer. Instead, the regular APR is a variable 17.24 — 26.24%.
That doesn’t sound great, but this does. Get up to 100,000 Bonus Miles and 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles. You can earn 80,000 bonus miles and 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles after you spend $5,000 in your first three months. Plus, get an extra 20,000 bonus miles after your first anniversary of card membership.
Get triple miles on Delta purchases and 1.5 x miles on eligible purchases the rest of the year after you spend $150,000 in a calendar year. Get a companion certificate annually upon renewal. And you get one $100 statement credit every 4 years. Or you can get one TSA Pre ✓® statement credit every 4.5 years which is an $85 value.
You will need great to excellent credit to qualify.
How to Finance a Business: Online Lenders
Online lenders are private companies that operate completely online. They are also known as private lenders or alternative lenders.
You will find with most any online lender, they often offer options more similar to invoice factoring and lines of credit. This is because these present fewer risks than straight term loans.
The minimum loan amount available from BlueVine is $5,000 and the maximum is $100,000. Annual revenue must be $120,000 or more and the borrower must be in business for at least 6 months. Your personal credit score has to be 600 or above. It is important to note also, that BlueVine does not offer a line of credit in all states.
Upstart is an online lender that uses a completely innovative platform for loans. The company itself questions the ability of financial information and FICO on their own to truly determine the risk of lending to a specific borrower. They choose to use a combination of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning to gather alternative data instead. They then use this data to help them make credit decisions.
This alternative data can include such things as mobile phone bills, rent, deposits, withdrawals, and even other information less directly tied to finances. The software they use learns and improves on its own. You can use their online quote tool to play with different amounts and terms to see the various interest rate possibilities. Typically, business loans are available ranging from $1,000 to $50,000. Interest rates vary greatly, ranging from 7.5% to 35.99%. Repayment terms can be either 3 -year or 5-year.
To be eligible for a loan with Upstart, you must meet the following qualifications:
- Credit score of 620+
- No bankruptcies or negative public records
- No delinquent accounts
- Meet debt to income standards (they only note they will check this ratio, not what their standards are.)
- Have fewer than 6 inquiries in the past 6 months on your credit report, not including those related to student loans, vehicle loans, or mortgages
These are the requirements they list on their website. One independent review said that the requirement for the debt to income ratio is a maximum of 45%. It also says that the minimum annual income has to be at least $12,000.
Founded in 2008 by college roommates, online lender Fora Financial now funds more than $1.3 million in working capital around the United States. There is no minimum credit score, and there is an early repayment discount if you qualify.
The minimum loan amount is $5,000 and the maximum is $500,000. The business must be at least 6 months in operation and the monthly revenue has to be $12,000 or more. There can be no open bankruptcies.
Obtaining financing from OnDeck is quick and easy. First, you apply online and receive your decision once application processing is complete. If you receive approval, your loan funds will go directly to your bank account. The minimum loan amount is $5,000 and the maximum is $500,000.
Just like any other online lender, they do have certain requirements to qualify for a loan. For example, a personal credit score of 600 or more. Also, you must be in business for at least 3 years. Annual revenue must be at or exceed $100,000. In addition, there can be no bankruptcy on file in the past 2 years and no unresolved liens or judgements.
Get up to $150,000 in financing so your business can thrive.
How to Finance a Business: When to Go Another Route
Of course, you may want to try to fund your business without debt. While it is certainly possible to get some funding without debt, it is much more likely your business will have to take on at least some debt. However, non-debt options are definitely great for reducing the amount of debt your business takes on. Start with trying to find investors. Although for small businesses, this will likely look different than you imagine. Most likely you will need to find angel investors or consider crowdfunding.
Grants are also an option. This is especially true if you meet certain criteria. While grants are available to business owners of all types, there are many specifically geared toward minority business owners, women business owners, business owners that are veterans, and those in low-income areas.
How to Finance a Business: There Is No One Size Fits All
The truth is, the answer to the question of how to finance a business is going to be different for almost every business owner. Varying credit scores, revenue amounts, and times in business will all make a difference. Sometimes it helps to have someone walk you through the process of figuring out what types of funding and financing will work best for your specific situation. Either way, you need to know all the options and look at each one carefully to figure out the be combination for your business.
Digital marketing covers everything from SEO and content marketing to email campaigns, social media strategy, and video marketing too.
With new digital marketing companies popping up left and right offering a bit of everything (and truly speaking to no one), it’s no surprise you’re having a hard time finding the right one.
The best thing to do is narrow down your options by bypassing those digital marketing companies trying to do too many things at once.
Why? Because true highly-niched experts are the best way to get the results you want (and deserve) for your business.
But, it’s not always easy to find those experts when you need them.
So, I put together a list of the top digital marketing companies who genuinely excel at what they do to help you find the right fit for your business depending on what you need.
Then, we’re going to talk about what makes them great and what to expect when working with them.
Let’s get started!
The 6 top digital marketing companies in the world
Digital marketing can be done from anywhere in the world.
So, it doesn’t matter if you’re living in New York and want to work with a company in Houston. Or living in London interested in an advertising specialist in Australia.
All this freedom does make it difficult to narrow down your choices.
But this list is a great place to start.
1. Neil Patel Digital — Best for content marketing and SEO
Let’s face it — consistent content creation and effective content marketing are the banes of a lot of business’s existence.
Pair that with constantly evolving search engine algorithms and you have a recipe for burnout and frustration (on top of your every-day to-do’s).
Thankfully there’s an easier way than staying on top of it on your own.
Neil Patel Digital was built by marketers — not bankers — interested in disrupting the way brands (and their target audience) think about the content they create, publish, and promote.
We’ve helped businesses like Facebook, Intuit, and Google, as well as small to medium-sized businesses, disrupt their industries with our holistic and authentic approach to content creation and search engine optimization.
From research to execution to promotion and ongoing optimization, we know a thing or two (or twenty) about helping your brand create the best content for the right people… and putting it in front of them as well.
Your business deserves to be heard and there’s no one more dedicated to making that happen than our team of professional experts equipped with my world-class digital marketing strategies.
Plus, with seven offices around the world, our team is here for you when you need us.
2. Cubicle Ninjas — Best for brand design and app/website development
You can have the best ideas and products in the world but without a brand that portrays your story and core values, you’re going to have a hard time connecting with your audience.
But cohesive brand design goes beyond the basics of graphic design best practices and Googling for free information until your eyes gloss over.
That’s where an experienced specialist comes in and saves the day.
Cubicle Ninjas uses a strategic combination of design and technology to develop innovative, inspiring, and one-of-a-kind branding design paired with the mobile apps and websites brands need to stand out in our online world.
They’ve designed high-end customer experiences for companies like Red Bull, Microsoft, IBM, and Hilton but they also work with smaller boutique brands as well.
Cubicle Ninjas believe the best brands encompass visual, written, and interactive elements to create a cohesive customer experience through every stage of their journey from casual visitors to loyal repeat customers.
Their client-proven process works for businesses and projects of all sizes interested in developing a brand and creative assets that help them tell their story.
3. Storm Brain — Best for advertising and social media marketing
Social media seemingly changes by the second.
It feels impossible to keep up with new platforms, updated policies, and ever-changing social media marketing techniques on top of running your business.
But thankfully, you don’t have to.
Storm Brain is a digital marketing company specializing in effective advertising campaigns and social media marketing that helps brands of all sizes generate more leads, build brand ambassadors, and make more money with a strong focus on ROI.
They’ve worked with some big names like Zillow, Ford, and Citi Bank but they also work with smaller brands in a wide variety of industries.
Storm Brain focuses on planning, creating, and executing both paid and organic social media campaigns that help your audience connect with your brand across social media channels.
However, they specialize in Facebook and paid social media advertising.
Their four-step strategic approach centers around your target audience and capitalizes on paid media, owned media, and earned media to ensure your brand is in front of the right people.
4. Mad Mind — Best for eCommerce development and product branding
As a product-based business, you have different marketing roadblocks than service-based or blogging-based businesses.
And there are a lot of other branding elements coming into play as well.
Thankfully, Mad Mind is here to help.
They’re a creative digital marketing studio for both large and small eCommerce brands looking to develop cohesive branding from their website design down to the smallest details of their product packaging.
Brands like Lyft and Sony Music trust Mad Mind to help them create an impactful brand, attract the right people, and turn them into lifelong paying customers.
Furthermore, they’ve been featured on Shark Tank, The Los Angeles Times, and Vogue.
From WordPress, WooCommerce, and Shopify development to custom websites and thoughtful eCommerce branding, their team of “marketing geniuses” delivers powerful results and dynamic marketing strategies you can leverage for years to come.
5. Pop Video — Best for video and visual content marketing
Video and visual content marketing are booming right now.
But it’s no secret planning, creating, and producing videos feels overwhelming and downright difficult, to say the least.
The good news is… you don’t have to do it all yourself.
Pop Video specializes in doing the heavy lifting (read: video creation, execution, repurposing, editing, etc.) for you.
They know your audience expects more than one-off videos and other types of visual content. And they also believe your business deserves better, as well. They don’t call themselves a “lean, mean, content-generating machine” for nothing.
Pop Video has partnered with hundreds of brands including Phillips 66, Academy Sports + Outdoors, and Mattress Firm to revolutionize the way their audiences consume and interact with digital content.
However, they don’t just produce great videos.
6. Action Rocket — Best for email marketing and design
There’s a reason 93% of B2B brands use email to distribute the content they create — it works.
But starting your email list and growing it into a database of raving fans and customers isn’t easy. Most businesses know this and do everything they can to avoid it like the plague.
Good thing you have another option.
Furthermore, they’ve worked with some huge names you may have heard of like QVC, Unicef, and American Express.
However, they also work with businesses of all sizes anywhere in the world.
Action Rocket offers courses, workshops, and training as well as world-class email campaign creation services so you can start leveraging one of the most effective forms of digital marketing for your business.
7 characteristics that make a great digital marketing company
Now you know my top recommendations.
So, let’s talk about what makes these digital marketing companies great and what to look for if none of the companies above match what you’re after. These are the key steps in how to pick the right digital marketing agency.
1. A great website and digital marketing strategy
Smart digital marketers understand the importance of having a well-designed website and an effective digital marketing strategy.
So, it makes sense to expect your digital marketing company to have both, especially if they offer web design or custom development services.
Take a look around their website, sign up for the email list, and peek at their social media profiles to make sure they’re practicing what they preach.
And if they’re not… move on to a digital marketing company that is.
2. An impressive portfolio
Agencies use their portfolio to show off their best work.
So, look through their published portfolio pieces to see examples of the types of work they produce for their clients.
This also gives you an idea of the types of clients they frequently work with.
Pay close attention to the style and quality of what they do and make sure it closely aligns with what you hope to get out of working with them.
Furthermore, look at the list of clients they have to see if you recognize any of the names.
If anything seems off or doesn’t fit what you’re looking for, move on to a digital marketing company that feels like a better fit for you and your business.
3. Aligned company culture and core values
It’s important to work with companies that value the same things and have a strong company culture you can appreciate to get the results you hope to achieve (without wanting to pull your hair out).
Do you prefer a creative and collaborative atmosphere or a more rigid and structured approach?
Look at the words, phrases, and photos they use on their website to get an idea of how they work and make sure it’s a good match to what you’re looking for.
Some digital marketing companies use humor and playfulness while others are more serious.
So, decide what type of experience you want to have and find a company that matches that.
Example: Would you use the word “disruptive” to describe your brand and vision?
4. A diverse team with appropriate specializations
It’s important to hire a digital marketing company with the right team that can deliver the results you’re hoping for.
If you’re looking for high-end brand design services, make sure they have an experienced team of designers to take on your project.
Or maybe you’re interested in a custom-coded website.
Check out that company’s team on their about page (if they have everyone listed there) or on LinkedIn to make sure they have an experienced designer and a coder or developer on staff.
5. Timely and effective communication
Strong communication is one of the most important parts of a fruitful and beneficial partnership between a company and its digital marketing company.
So, it’s important to consider their communication skills and overall customer service before hiring them.
You can do this by evaluating the responses you get and how long it takes for them to respond to your messages and questions before giving them any money.
This doesn’t always work but if they take weeks to respond to a simple question, consider moving on to someone else.
6. Realistic promises and proven results
Before scheduling a consultation or reaching out for more information, look through their website to make sure their promises are realistic.
Furthermore, look to see if you can find any data-driven case studies they have regarding the type of results they regularly produce for their clients.
If they’re promising unrealistic things and making outlandish claims on their website, that’s a huge red flag.
Why? Because this means they probably don’t understand how the industry works and they don’t have any actual client results to share.
7. Real-world client testimonials
93% of consumers turn to customer reviews and testimonials when deciding to buy something. They do this because it helps justify the expense and ensure they’re going to get what they pay for.
So, you should do the same.
Keep an eye out for detailed and honest customer reviews or testimonials to give you an insight into what working with the company is like.
If you can’t find any, they probably haven’t worked with many clients and they may be inexperienced.
Which… is fine if you’re on a budget. But it’s not fine if you’re looking for the best possible solution for your business.
What to expect from a great digital marketing company
Now you know what to look for, so let’s talk about what to expect when working or partnering with a digital marketing company.
The details of each phase look different for every business out there. But, the fundamentals remain the same regardless of the company you choose to work with.
Phase 1: discovery and research
The best digital marketing companies want to learn everything there is to know about your business from top to bottom.
This usually happens through a series of phone calls/zoom chats and detailed questionnaires so they can get to know you and what you’re looking for. They’ll also do a deep dive into your target market, audience, and competition.
Phase 2: developing a plan of action
Once they know who you are and what you’re looking for, they’ll work with you to develop a detailed timeline and plan of attack to get the job done well and on time.
Phase 3: executing the plan of attack
Once everyone agrees on the plan, it’s time to start executing.
Your digital marketing company will work through the process of creating and finalizing everything you both agreed to during phase 2.
This includes building infrastructure, creatives, ongoing strategies, and anything else you need to achieve the results you’re after. Again, this looks different for different types of projects and the company you’re working with.
Depending on the complexity of your project, this could take anywhere from a few days to several months (or even a few years depending on the type of partnership).
Phase 4: results and offboarding
After everything is complete, good digital marketing companies will walk you through the results and outcomes you achieved by working together.
From there, you’ll discuss the next steps and how to move forward on your own (or what happens next if your partnership isn’t over).
Digital marketing = long-term relationships and results
Investing in digital marketing is a huge step in the right direction for your business. But, these strategies don’t return results overnight and they generally tend to ramp up over time.
So, expect a long-term relationship with your digital marketing company.
The longer you work with them, the more fine-tuned they are to your needs, and the quicker they can get to work producing even better long-term results for you and your business.
So, whether you choose one of my top recommendations or scout out your own, use the tips and best practices we talked about to make a smart, educated decision… like the future of your business depends on it.
Because it does!
Have you worked with any digital marketing companies recently? How did it go and did you get the results you hoped for?