December, 2020

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Use Your EIN for Credit in a Recession –The Foolproof Way to Stop Funding Your Business with Your Own Money!

Use Your EIN for Credit in a Recession and Keep Your Personal Assets Secure

Do you know how to use your EIN for credit in a recession? We can show you how and why to separate your personal and commercial credit, using your EIN all the way. Just in time – because you need your own money more than ever in a worsening economy.

Whether you have a new small company, or you are now associated because you paid for one or have suddenly become an owner or a manager, it doesn’t matter. For here are reasons you ought to develop your business credit using your EIN.

Use Your EIN for Credit in a Recession: Separate Your Business Credit from Consumer

Even if you are a sole proprietor, it will still help, big time, for you to erect a financial fence between your consumer credit and your company credit. This is true even if, let’s say, you sell a specific thing handmade by no one but you.

How come? Because keeping a barrier means that your consumer credit will not be influenced by your company credit. You don’t stand to lose a car, for example, in case your business enters receivership.

Use Your EIN for Credit in a Recession: Conserve your Personal Credit for Your Own Expenses

Even if you pay all of your business’s charges on schedule, each and every single time, you aren’t doing yourself any favors using your personal charge cards to settle business liability. So this also includes other accounts such as a checking or savings account.

How come? Because the two forms of credit ratings are impacted by what’s called the Credit Utilization Rate. This is just a basic computation of the credit you’re making use of. And then it’s divided by your total available credit. So you want to keep this ratio at around 30% or less.

That is why, if you are using your consumer cards to pay for your business expenses, you are inflating your credit utilization rate. If you bring it above the 30% benchmark, then your individual credit score will be adversely affected. And this is true even though you are diligent about paying off your business financial obligations.

So save your utilization rate!

Learn more here and get started toward building business credit attached to your company’s EIN and not your SSN. Get money even in a recession!

Use Your EIN for Credit in a Recession: Establish a Credit History Before You Really Have to Draw from It

For the big credit reporting agencies, credit history is one of the components they use when figuring your business credit score. The longer (and better) your credit history, the better your small business’s credit score is likely to be.

When you take into consideration what credit score needed for a business loan, then you need every bit of your credit score you can get. So if you start early, it can only help you.

These big credit reporting agencies are Experian, Equifax, and Dun and Bradstreet. You know, all the places you know of where to review a business credit score.

Use Your EIN for Credit in a Recession: Prepare for Lean Times

You may not want to ponder it, but there are going to be occasions when the work runs out. If you are in a seasonal business, then this is a part of the DNA of your company. But every company can undergo leaner times.

You may have to make payroll or equipment payments. Or you might just need to pay the rent. But either way, you are going to really need business credit to get by.

And by developing your business credit even before you actually need it, you are much more likely to get excellent terms. Or maybe get credit at all. So use your EIN for credit and get started right away.

Use Your EIN for Credit in a Recession: The Internal Revenue Service Says You Have a Business (Or Perhaps Even a Corporation).  Now Start Acting Like One!

So what does this mean? Have you been responsible? Have you set up your company with an EIN (employer identification number)?

So then at some point in the process you had to work with the Internal Revenue Service.

You had to tell the IRS that your small business is, indeed, an authentic business. And you had to show it is not just a leisure activity or the like.

Thus, the IRS is already treating you and your small business separately. That is, when it comes to tax liability. Consequently, if you’re still floating interest-free loans to your business with your personal credit cards, then stop! Because now is the time to cut that out.

So use your EIN for credit and separate your finances. And at the same time, make the IRS happy. Okay that’s going too far. Make the IRS happier, at least.

Use Your EIN for Credit in a Recession: Vendor Credit is a Great Thing and You Should Use It

What is vendor credit? It’s where you work straight with a neighborhood supplier to develop a relationship. And through this you can have a small loan (that is, credit) floated to you for the kinds of things you need at all times.

Learn more here and get started toward building business credit attached to your company’s EIN and not your SSN. Get money even in a recession!

Use Your EIN for Credit in a Recession: Secret Bonus – Vendors Which Report to the Business Credit Reporting Agencies

Not every vendor can help in the same way true starter credit can. These are merchants that will grant an approval with little effort. You also want them to be reporting to one or more of the big three CRAs: Dun & Bradstreet, Equifax, and Experian.

You need to use your EIN for credit with these vendors.

And you want 3 of these to move onto the next step, which is retail credit.Use Your EIN for Credit in a Recession Credit Suite

Uline Shipping Supplies

Uline Shipping Supplies is a true starter vendor. You can find them online at https://www.uline.com/.

They sell shipping, packing, and industrial supplies, and they report to Experian and D&B.

You will have to have a D-U-N-S number. They will ask for 2 references and a bank reference.

The first few orders might have to be paid in advance to initially get approval for Net 30 terms. Also, you may need to buy some items you do not need.

Quill

Quill is an additional true starter vendor. You can find them online at https://www.quill.com/. They sell office, packaging, and cleaning supplies, and they report to D&B.

Generally they’ll put you on a 90 day prepayment schedule. If you order items every month for 3 months, they will commonly approve you for a Net 30 Account.

Grainger Industrial Supply

Grainger Industrial Supply is likewise a true starter vendor. You can find them online at https://www.grainger.com/.

They sell safety equipment, plumbing supplies, and more. And they report to D&B. You will need to have a business license, EIN, and a DUNS number.

For under $1000 credit limit they will approve nearly anyone with a business license.

Accounts That Don’t Report

Non-Reporting Trade Accounts can also be helpful. While you do want trade accounts to report to a minimum of one of the CRAs, a trade account which does not report can yet be of some value. You can always ask non-reporting accounts for trade references.

And also credit accounts of any sort should help you to better even out business expenditures. So this thereby makes budgeting simpler. These are companies like PayPal Credit, T-Mobile, and Best Buy.

Learn more here and get started toward building business credit attached to your company’s EIN and not your SSN. Get money even in a recession!

Use Your EIN for Credit in a Recession: Business Credit Means You Can Eventually get Bank Loans for Your Company

Sometimes a business opportunity is just too good to pass up. And you need to act quickly. This may possibly be anything from buying realty at auction to procuring the equipment owned by a company undergoing reorganization.

It can also mean bidding on raw materials when they are at their best price for the year.

But you may not have that sort of funds handy. Developing business credit means that bank loans will be granted faster and with better terms.

You will have the chance to make the most of these opportunities, and seize them when they are still meaningful.

Without having business credit, despite the fact that you get a loan, it will inevitably take longer. And somebody else might buy those economical raw materials or outbid you when it comes to prime real estate.

And if you build business credit the right way, and use your EIN for credit, you may find you don’t need a bank loan after all. Really!

Let Us Show You How to Use Your EIN for Credit in a Recession and Beyond

Establish business credit as early as you can and reap the advantages long after.

Business credit is an asset which can help your company for many years to come. You won’t regret establishing and building business credit.

Learn more here and use your EIN for credit in a recession – not attached your Social Security Number.

The post Use Your EIN for Credit in a Recession –The Foolproof Way to Stop Funding Your Business with Your Own Money! appeared first on Credit Suite.

Your SBA Loan Checklist During Recession Periods

Grab an SBA loan checklist and get the funding your business needs to grow and flourish, even during recession periods. But be aware – it’s a lot. And SBA loans are hard to qualify. More on that later. And keep in mind, during the COVID-19 situation, the SBA Paycheck Protection Program is out there, but the program’s rollout has been rocky. Check out the most current information on the SBA Paycheck Protection Program

Recession Era Funding

The number of US financial institutions and thrifts has been decreasing slowly for 25 years. This is from consolidation in the marketplace along with deregulation in the 1990s, reducing obstacles to interstate banking. See: https://www.fundera.com/blog/happened-americas-small-businesses-financial-crisis-six-years-start-crisis-look-back-10-charts 

Assets concentrated in everlarger financial institutions is problematic for small business owners. Big banks are much less likely to make small loans. Economic slumps mean banks become much more mindful with lending. Luckily, business credit does not count on banks.

What Does the SBA Do?

The Small Business Administration isn’t a lender; they just guarantee loans from conventional lenders, such as banks and credit unions. This is true even during recession periods.

The Small Business Administration truly wants your new small business to succeed. They know from experience that your business’s funding sources might not be perfectly reliable, particularly if your business is a new one. You might be trying to get a trade line but cannot get one, at least for the time being. Your parts supplier might end up with a strike at the factory. The weather could make your fruit supplier’s crop fail. Or your competitor might get to market first.

No matter what your reason for wanting a Small Business Administration loan, here are the specifics of what you will need:

SBA Loan Checklist for Recession Periods: Make Sure You Have Excellent Credit, Both Business and Personal, Plus Bank Credit

The SBA and the bank want to see your personal credit score, particularly if your business is a new one. 

SBA Loan Checklist for Recession Periods: Your Personal Credit ScoresSBA Loan Checklist During Recessions Credit Suite

Your personal credit score runs from 300 to 850. The number is dependent upon several factors, including the following.

It will show how fast you pay your bills. This is the most important factor.

It will also show how completely you pay your bills. And it will include the length of time you have had credit.

Plus it will show how much of your overall credit you are using. This is called your credit utilization rate. It will also include how many recent inquiries you have had on your personal credit reports.

And it will contain information on the type of credit you’re using. So those are credit cards, mortgage, etc.

Payment history and amount owed are the two biggest factors in figuring your personal credit score. You can’t have bankruptcies or other big blemishes on your personal credit report.

SBA Loan Checklist for Recession Periods: Your Business Credit Scores

More established businesses will also have meaningful business credit scores, and the SBA and your lender want those to be excellent as well. Your business credit is also based on your payment history, amount owed, and credit utilization rate. 

However, it’s also based on whether there are any liens or judgments against your business, or any UCC filings. Your business credit score also has a basis in your revenue and cash flow. 

Credit inquiries don’t impact your business credit score like they do your personal credit score. Good business credit means a PAYDEX score of 80 or better.

What frustrates you the most about how bank ratings decide if your business will get a loan? Check out how our guide can help.

SBA Loan Checklist for Recession Periods: Great Bank Credit 

Excellent bank credit will include keeping over $10,000 liquid in your accounts. But let’s look at what bank credit is in the first place.

A bank credit rating is a measure of the sum total of borrowing capacity which a business can get from the banking system only. 

Bank Credit Ratings Clarified

A business can get more company credit promptly, so long as it has at least one bank reference and an average day-to-day account balance of a minimum of $10,000 for the most recent 3 month time period. This setup will generate a bank credit score of a Low-5. So this means it is an Adjusted Debt Balance of from $5,000 to $30,000.

A lower rating, like a High-4, or balance of $7,000 to $9,999 will not immediately deny the business’s loan application. Nonetheless, it will slow down the approval process.

What is a Bank Score?

A bank score is a measure of the average minimum balance as kept in a business bank account over a 3 month long period. Thus a $10,000 balance| will rate as a Low-5, a $5,000 balance will rank as a Mid-4, and a $999 balance will rate as a High-3, and so on.

A company’s chief objective ought to always be to maintain a minimum Low-5 bank score (or, an average $10,000 balance) for at the very least 3 months. This is because, without at least a Low-5 score, the majority of financial institutions will operate under the assumption that the business has little to no capacity to repay a loan or a business line of credit.

But there is one point to bear in mind – you will never really see this number. The bank will just keep this number in its back pocket.

What frustrates you the most about how bank ratings decide if your business will get a loan? Check out how our guide can help.

The Bank Rating Ranges

The numbers work out to the following ranges:

To get a High-5 rating, your small business will need to have an account balance of $70,000 to $99,999. For a Mid-5 rating, your business must have an account balance of $40,000 to $69,999. And for a Low-5 score, your business should keep an account balance of $10,000 to $39,000. So your business needs this level bank rating or better to get a bank loan.

For a High-4 score, your small business must have an account balance of $7,000 to $9,999. And for a Mid-4 rating, your small business must keep an account balance of $4,000 to $6,999. So for a Low-4 rating, your small business will need to have an account balance of $1,000 to $3,999.

SBA Loan Checklist for Recession Periods: Keep a High Balance

Perhaps the most convenient way to attain and keep a great bank credit rating is to deposit at the very least $10,000 into your business bank account and keep it there for as long as six months. While you will still need to make regular deposits, this straightforward step will aid in three ways. 

One, you will have kept a great minimum balance for a minimum of 3 months. 2, you will most likely not overdraw with such a great balance. And three, you will be at the magic minimum for a Low-5 bank credit score. Therefore you will be dealing with our # 4 and # 7, above.

And you might even be able to get around our # 3. Yet we still highly recommend overdraft protection.

SBA Loan Checklist for Recession Periods: Keep Your Information Congruent

Ensure your small business account information are consistent across the board, all over. No lender will stop to consider the myriad ways your business can be listed online. If they don’t see what they want, they’ll just deny your application.

SBA Loan Checklist for Recession Periods: Make Consistent Deposits

You will need to make consistent deposits, and make sure they are more than the quantities you are withdrawing each month.

What frustrates you the most about how bank ratings decide if your business will get a loan? Check out how our guide can help.

SBA Loan Checklist for Recession Periods: Know and Follow Your Lender’s Minimum Requirements and Amounts

For one thing, your business must meet the SBA’s size standards, as these loans are only meant for small businesses. You will need to be current with any government loans, and that includes personal student loans. 

SBA Loan Checklist for Recession Periods: Documents, Documents, Documents

Of course you’re going to need paperwork! Traditional lenders will generally request a wide variety of legal and financial documents during the application process, which can include the following.

Bring in your personal and business income tax returns, generally for the most recent three years.  You should also bring in your business’s balance sheet and income statement.

Don’t forget your business and personal bank statements. And bring in a photograph of your driver’s license.

Plus you will need a copy of any commercial leases your business has. And take along copies of contracts you have with third parties.

You will need copies of your business licenses. And add a copy of your articles of incorporation. 

Carry along a resume which demonstrates relevant management or business experience. Take along a set of financial projections if your small business has a limited operating history.

Bring with you a profit and loss statement current to the past 90 days. Take your loan application history.

And don’t forget your business credit report!

SBA Loan Checklist for Recession Periods: A Good Business Plan

You’re not done with the documents yet. Good business plans show the following items. 

Make sure to include a description of your company. And add a description of your product and/or service.

Include the names of the people on your management team. And put in an analysis of your industry.

You will need to include your facilities and operations plan. Also include your promotional, marketing and sales strategy.

And add what’s called a SWOT analysis. This stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats. The idea is to show you know your business and your industry well.

SBA Loan Checklist for Recession Periods: Collateral or a Personal Guarantee

You will also, most likely, need to put up collateral. Collateral is assets which the lender can seize in the event that you default on the loan. These kinds of assets include inventory, equipment, vehicles, and any real estate the company may own. 

Another species of collateral is what’s called a blanket lien. These liens give the lender the right to take assets covered under the lien in the event of nonpayment.

In the absence of collateral, the lender will want a personal guarantee. 

If you can provide all of these documents and fulfill all of these requirements, then an SBA loan just might be in your small business’s future. The COVID-19 situation will not last forever.

The post Your SBA Loan Checklist During Recession Periods appeared first on Credit Suite.

How to Choose The Right Link Building Agency

Even if you publish the best content on any given content, Google might not rank it.

In fact, they usually don’t.

It takes a lot more than just content to get Google traffic these days.

So what’s required to win?

Sooner or later, you’re going to need high quality links to your content.

There’s lots of grey-area folks in this space. What’s the right way to do it? Are there any good link building companies out there?

They do exist. They’re just hard to find.

And be extra careful with all this. Not only does Google forbid paying for links, the only legitimate long-term strategy is to build links authentically. The right link building companies will help you do this.

Before going any further, always start with your goals. 

Know Your Goals and Desired Outcomes

Take a step back and ask yourself: Why do I need to build links to my website?

If you’re like most business people, you’re looking to hire a link-building agency because you heard links drive higher rankings and traffic to your site. 

Well, there are even more benefits if you build quality links to your site. 

Emphasis on ‘quality.’

And it’s because the way links work is pretty straightforward: Other sites trust your site for something, and they link to it. Google uses those signals, or ‘vote of confidence,’ to consider your website an authoritative resource. 

Your rewards? 

  • Authority
  • Higher ranking over your competitors for similar keywords or search phrases 
  • More qualified traffic
  • Leads and sales
  • Brand mentions across the internet

These rewards explain why some businesses spend between $10,000 – $50,000 per month on link-building alone. 

Yet, the competition for quality links has gotten tough.

Google cracked down on most of the link strategies. And even if you find something that works today, Google gets better at finding inauthentic links every year.

The last thing you want to build a bunch of links that Google starts ignoring in 12 months.

So, before you spray money on a link-building agency, be sure to choose one with experience building quality backlinks. 

To get quality backlinks, there are only a few strategies I know you can get them: 

  • Linkable content marketing
  • Blogger outreach
  • Guest posting
  • Curated, in-content backlinks 
  • Strategic link placements

Your SEO strategy and business goals determine what link-building strategies and agency you’ll need. 

Let me explain with a few examples. 

Example #1: Blogger Outreach for Outdated Content

Imagine for a second your main competitor’s site ranks No.1 organically for the keyword, “best female fitness apps,” while yours languishes on Google’s 19th page.  

And you realize this competitor ranks high because authoritative domains are linking to an old piece of content by them, which cited an outdated study related to women’s fitness. 

Authority, as they say, breeds authority. 

So, to displace your competitor or, at least, improve your position on the SERPs, you’ll also need to get backlinks from authoritative domains. 

Two options I trust you can leverage for this are:  

  • Create a refreshed version of the content sending links to your competitor. Then, reach out to the domains linking to them to replace links to your competitor with yours. 
  • Conduct a newer version of the fitness study making authoritative sites link to your competitor. Then, create a content piece discussing your findings and promote it to get links. 

Either way, the link-building strategy you’ll need in this scenario is called linkable content marketing

And that’s because content marketing and backlinks go together perfectly. You can’t really do one without the other. 

To get links using this strategy, you’ll need an agency with vast and proven experience in content marketing. 

Example #2: Outreach to Add Links to Brand Mentions

Let’s stay with the “best female fitness app” example. 

Imagine that you went ahead to conduct a new study on women’s fitness. 

After this, you produced an excellent content piece that breaks down your findings. 

Some months later, your study and content go viral, and many bloggers start mentioning it in their articles. 

Those mentions usually include links straight to your research.

But not always.

To seize this opportunity and build backlinks, you’ll need to reach out to those bloggers and ask for a link.  

In this case, you’ll use a link-building strategy called blogger outreach

Did you notice something in both examples I just shared? 

You need something worth linking to—something of high quality, to give other websites the confidence to send backlinks to your site. 

And these link-worthy assets are better if they’re in the form of content.

The better your content, the easier it is to get these authentic links that are perfectly legitimate.

Why does any of this matter?

Why not just hire some agency to build links for you?

There’s a lot of shady stuff in the link building space. If you don’t have a specific idea for the type of links you want, you’re going to get a link spammer to build a ton of bad links, charge you a ton, and then walk away. If you do enough of that, Google can penalize your site. It can take years to reverse that kind of thing.

Since link building has so much risk, you want to be in the weeds with any link building agency that you work with. It’s the only way to ensure that they don’t damage your domain.

Here’s some other things to look for in a great link building agency.

6 Characteristics that Make a Great Link Building Agency

Great companies have attributes that define them in general. Great link-building agencies are no exception. 

But what characteristics should one lookout for, which makes a link-building agency great?

There are six significant ones I can bet my money on. 

1. Content Services

I prefer to keep content and link building closely aligned.

Simply buying a ton of links to a landing page hasn’t worked in Google for ages.

To get good, authentic links, you need good, authentic content.

Many sites don’t have that content. Even if they’ve produced great content in the past, they might not have content that’s linkable enough. Research, stats, studies, and resources all do really well. 

If you don’t have that type of content, you’ll need an agency that can spot that gap and get the content produced for you.

2. Firm Link Building Restrictions

Any good link building agency will be deeply familiar with black hat SEO and the dodgy stuff some people do. And they never venture into these areas. It’s just too risky.

The good agencies know precisely where to draw the line.

They believe in building long-term links that Google values.

So they’ve set firm boundaries with their team and their clients on what they won’t do.

Ask them what links they won’t build. And which strategies they don’t use.

It should be a long list.

3. Monthly Link Reviews

Any legitimate link building agency will give you a list of every link that they’ve built.

This is your opportunity to review those links and make sure they’re 100% legitimate.

If an agency attempts to hide the links or drags their feet at all, work with someone else.

When you start working with a new agency, be sure to check all of the links in their first batch. You want to be completely sure that every link looks good. Anyone can check link quality, you don’t need to be an SEO expert.

Look for links on quality pages. Is it a good blog post? Is it a quality site? Does the link make sense?

If anything looks off to you, it’ll also look bad to Google.

4. Great Expectation Setting

The simple fact of link building is that results are never guaranteed. Google doesn’t give out rankings for participation. If you want that #1 slot, you need to outperform everyone else.

No one wins by doing a defined list of requirements, they win by doing more than their competitors.

If you have tough competition, you could be facing an uphill battle the whole way.

Great agencies know how hard some rankings can be. And they don’t overpromise.

Stay away from anyone that promises #1 rankings. And if an agency promises rankings within firm timelines or makes really specific forecasts, consider these redflags.

How to Work with a Link-Building Agency 

What’s it like working with a link-building agency?

It’s easiest to describe what a link building isn’t:

  1. Go to the agency’s website.
  2. Pick a link order like you’re on Amazon
  3. Go to checkout and purchase your links
  4. Wait for your links to arrive

Tons of companies offer that sort of thing.

And it’s almost always doomed to fail.

Working with agencies like that will only get your low-quality links. The agency is pursuing a volume game, they can’t give you the attention that you really need.

Look for a real agency that will help get you authentic links.

That process feels more link a real agency:

1. Get your team aligned

Like working with most agencies, you can set them up to succeed or fail.

No agency can perform miracles on their own.

Agencies get results by working closely with your team and using your internal resources when it makes sense. 

It’s usually a good idea to get your team aligned before reaching out to an agency in the first place. Then there won’t be any roadblocks once you get started.

  • Does your content team have bandwidth to work on link-focused content?
  • Will your tech team be able to make any site improvements if needed?
  • Have you done a recent SEO audit to clean up any weak sections of your site?
  • Does the agency “champion” on your team have enough authority to get changes live when needed?

Once your team is ready to go, reach out to an agency that seems promising. 

2. Discovery session

Authentic link building strategies are usually custom tailored to each site and business.

Most link building agencies will want to jump on a call with you, get a sense for your market and goals, and ask tons of questions to make sure they’re a good fit. 

Expect to get on a discovery call with them.

And if you have a massive website, there might be several discovery calls.

Once you fill out the agency’s contact form, you can expect to get these done within a week or so.

3. Research & strategic recommendations

The really amazing link building agencies will leverage their expertise to research your company, target audience, competitors, and industry.

They won’t blindly offer to start building links.

After all, winning Google is about outplaying your competitors.

If you don’t know the competition, you’ll have a really hard time beating them.

So great agencies figure out that competition. They get a sense for how much work it’s take to get good rankings in your space.

You should see a bunch of deep research on your site and competitors at this point.

That’s how they come up with a set of strategy recommendations for you.

4. A contract with project deliverables

Assuming their recommendations look good, you can move to the proposal stage.

Expect long-term proposals.

Link building takes forever to work, especially if you’re doing it the legit way.

First you need to get a campaign or content built, then you launch it, then you wait for organic links to come in, then you wait for those links to have an impact.

None of this happens quickly.

And link building agencies know this. They only want to work with folks that are truly onboard for the long-term.

5. Client onboarding

Yes, the top link-building agencies have an onboarding process unique to each client’s project, so expect one. 

Going through this process is crucial as it sets the stage for working together. 

It also clarifies what you’ll need to do to make the partnership successful. Follow up with your team and ensure the agency is getting what they need. 

That’s the only way to give the project any chance of success.

How to Find the Right Link Building Agency for You

A link-building agency that’s right for you is one that understands your needs and how getting backlinks would impact your business and SEO strategy in general. 

By now, I trust you already know this. 

First, avoid any agency promising you backlinks at the push of a button. Most times, such are black hat SEO ninjas with spammy PBN (private blog networks). 

And what can get from these kinds?

Spammy links!

Those ill-tactics may have quick wins—they had in the past, but give it some time and Google will penalize you and shrink your rankings. 

It’s best to choose reputable, trusted, and experienced quality link-building companies who won’t cut corners and daint their image and brands.  

Below are the best link building companies that come highly recommended.

The 5 Top Link Building Agencies

1. Neil Patel Digital – Best For Linkable Content Marketing

I’ve built millions of  backlinks to my personal blog using by using my linkable content strategy: 

Thats over 3 million backlinks which generate more than 3.4 million monthly organic visits.

By working with Neil Patel Digital, you get access to that same playbook for your own site. Contact us and my team will get in touch with you.

2. FATJOE – Best for Blogger Outreach

FATJOE is a trusted blogger outreach service even other agencies turn to for backlinks: 

Founded by experienced SEO practitioner, Joe Taylor, FATJOE’s blogger outreach service has generated backlinks for over 5,000 customers globally.

This is a great option if you already have amazing content and only need some extra muscle from an outreach strategy.

3. Page One Power – Best for Strategic Link Placements

Page One Power has built a reputation as the trusted link-building agency for getting strategic link placements on higher domain (DA60+) websites.

They do this through a combination of linkable assets and high-level outreach strategy. 

This agency’s ten years of experience speaks for itself. They build about 15,000 strategic backlinks each year and and have 982 active partners: 

4. The HOTH – Best for Guest Posting 

If you need to generate some backlinks on your own, guest posting on other people’s sites is the way to go.

But what if you didn’t have the time to do this?

The HOTH can help:

The HOTH’s guest posting is a productized service you can turn to and get links from sites with domain authority between DA10 and DA50. 

5. RhinoRank – Best for Curated Link-building

RhinoRank is excellent for getting links from websites that have mentioned your company or product in content pieces published on their sites without linking to you.  

The name of this link acquisition strategy is curated link-building

RhinoRank will do all the hard work, reach out to several webmasters with relevant brand mentions, and secure backlinks for your site.

Conclusion: Look Beyond Backlinks

Yes, sites need links to rank in Google. Especially for competitive terms.

You could try to brute force your way through this and work with a link building agency.

Or you could roll out a whole marketing strategy that builds your domain authority, your brand, gets you a ton of leads, and builds links naturally over time.

That’s how I prefer to do it.

Instead of just looking for a link building agency, consider a top-tier online marketing agency that can implement the entire program for you.

That’s what we do at Neil Patel Digital.

The post How to Choose The Right Link Building Agency appeared first on Neil Patel.

Best Dedicated Hosting

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Are you serious about growing your business? Your website needs to be able to grow with you.

Shared hosting limits your site’s space, and you’ll soon outgrow it. But what’s the next step?

Dedicated hosting gives you everything you need for your business. It allows for customization, more storage, and lets you make the most of your online presence.

So, how do you choose the best dedicated hosting service to give you the most value for your money?

Let’s talk about some of the best dedicated hosting options in 2021 to make things easier for you.

Top 7 Options for Dedicated Hosting

  1. Bluehost—Best for Comprehensive Dedicated Hosting Features
  2. HostGator—Best Customer Support with Dedicated Hosting
  3. DreamHost—Best for Managed Dedicated Hosting
  4. InMotion—Best Dedicated Hosting for Technical Websites
  5. A2 Hosting—Best Dedicated Hosting for Website Performance
  6. Liquid Web—Best for Customizable Dedicated Hosting
  7. TMDHosting—Best Dedicated Hosting for Quick Startup

How to Choose the Best Dedicated Hosting for You

When you choose a dedicated host, knowing the features you need will save you time. You want one that helps your website perform at its best at all times. Factoring in these additional elements of a dedicated hosting service will help your website stand out.

Managed or Unmanaged

Whether you choose a managed or unmanaged host depends on your server knowledge and how much control you want over your dedicated hosting.

A managed hosting service means that the host takes care of server problems for you. They manage the operating system (OS), control panel, setup, and anything else that comes with the platform when you buy it.

Unmanaged hosting is cheaper, but that’s because you manage everything yourself. The host still does the bare minimum when it comes to network maintenance, but they won’t help you manage software, servers, security, or errors.

An unmanaged system means you have more control, but that doesn’t mean much if you don’t know what you’re doing. Feeling comfortable with a managed hosting service can make it worth the extra cost.

Scalability

If you want to grow your business, get dedicated hosting that will grow with it. Scalable hosting allows you to configure your hosting to your individual website’s needs. It also prevents downtime associated with server limits.

Security

According to Forbes, data breaches cost companies an average of $3.9 million. A dedicated host with high-quality security helps protect your business. 

It also means your customers feel comfortable shopping with you. That way, you can avoid problems and build trust with your customers.

Availability

A dedicated host helps you keep your website’s uptime as close to 100% as possible. Downtime can cost you website traffic and, by extension, conversions. 

Find a provider that keeps up availability and guarantees maximum uptime. Ideally, you want a host with an uptime of at least 99.98% or higher. 

Administration

Dedicated hosting gives you control over configuration and software installation, so you can work your website as you wish. Administrative access helps you tailor your service to your business. You control which services you use with your dedicated host.

Operating System and Hardware

Some hosts support more than one OS, but others don’t. If you choose the wrong one, you might not be able to use it with your website.

Hardware determines whether the server can meet your business needs. Check things like the CPU model and speed, RAM size, bandwidth, and hard disk capacity before you buy.

The Different Types of Dedicated Hosting

Different types of dedicated hosting servers focus on various areas of your website. What might be an advantage for one business could hurt another. You want the right kind of dedicated host so that you have everything you need for the future.

Basic

Most people upgrade from shared hosting to basic dedicated hosting. Basic dedicated hosting is significantly better than shared hosting, but it still only gives you the bare bones of a hosting service.

These hosts usually have less RAM and customizability, and they have fewer features overall. They might not grow with your business as well as other higher-tech options.

High-End

High-end dedicated hosts bump you to the next level when basic doesn’t cut it. They offer more space, better features, and you can do more to make your website stand out. They also have higher overall performance without getting too tech-heavy.

Bandwidth

Bandwidth servers work well for sites with a lot of streaming, audio, video, and similar content. They focus on speed when people visit your site and with uploads and downloads during data transfer.

These hosts range from standard metered to unmetered bandwidth, so you have the space to run streams without overloading your site.

Database

Database hosts are some of the most complex servers. They need high-end configurations and more resources in place to manage since they hold more information. With database hosts, you can run specific databases on the server, like MySQL. 

Application

If you have a lot of apps on your site, an application server can manage them. It works with apps ranging from media files to chat software and tons of other stuff. When you have so much on your website, you want a dedicated host that can handle it.

Server-Mirroring

You’ve heard that you should back up your data, and server-mirroring hosts do it best. They synchronize your servers, so you don’t lose your hard work. They transfer your data from one server to the other and prevent data loss.

#1 Bluehost—Best for Comprehensive Dedicated Hosting Features

Bluehost is one of the best dedicated hosting services out there, and for good reason. It’s cheaper than other dedicated hosts while still giving you tons of features for your website. Its 99.98% uptime also puts it near the top of the list when it comes to performance.

Bluehost has all of the basic dedicated hosting features, plus several more advanced ones, giving you room to grow. With access control and database management, you have everything you need at your fingertips and 24/7 access to customer support if you have a problem.

You can get three different hosting packages with Bluehost:

  • Standard: $79.99 per month
  • Enhanced: $99.99 per month
  • Premium: $119.99 per month

Standard gives you four cores at 2.3GHz and 500GB of mirrored storage so you can back up your data. With 4GB RAM, you don’t get an impressive amount of storage, but it works well for simpler websites. 5TB bandwidth gives you the speed you need to keep things up and running with three IP addresses.

The Enhanced package bumps you to the next level with the same number of cores at 2.5GHz and 1TB of mirrored storage. It doubles the bandwidth to 10TB and gives you four IP addresses.

Premium, the highest tier, also gives you four cores at 3.3GHz and 1TB of mirrored storage. It once again doubles the RAM to 16GB, adds to the bandwidth for 15TB, and gives you five IP addresses.

With Bluehost, you get a free domain name for the first year, a free SSL certificate, and a 30-day money-back guarantee. The biggest downside to Bluehost is that they only have one server location. It’s in the United States, so if you run your website internationally, you might want a different host.

#2 HostGator—Best Customer Support with Dedicated Hosting

HostGator’s 99.99% uptime and unmetered bandwidth make it an attractive option for business websites. HostGator is known for its excellent customer support, which you can access 24/7/365. It also has online resources like videos and knowledge base articles to help you set up your site.

HostGator gives you three options for dedicated hosting:

  • Value Server: $89.98 per month
  • Power Server: $119.89 per month
  • Enterprise Server: $139.99 per month

The Value Server gives you four cores with eight threads and an Intel Xeon-D CPU. Its 8GB RAM and 1TB HDD make for plenty of storage.

The next level, Power Server, comes with eight cores with 16 threads and the same CPU as the Value Server. However, it doubles your RAM to 16GB and gives you a combined 2TB HDD and 512GB SSD to store bigger applications.

The Enterprise Server has the same number of cores and threads as the Power Server and the same CPU. The upgrades come with RAM at 30GB and 1TB of SSD for your most complex applications.

You can choose between managed or semi-managed hosting based on how much you want to customize your server. Plus, each of HostGator’s packages comes with unmetered bandwidth and compatibility with Linux and Windows OS.

HostGator has two servers, but like Bluehost, they’re both in the US. Despite the host’s superior performance, it’s not a great choice for businesses with primarily international customers.

#3 DreamHost—Best for Dedicated Hosting Storage

DreamHost doesn’t have the same features or performance as many other dedicated hosting providers on this list, but it does offer a lot of storage. With a fully managed server, 24/7 tech support, and 100% uptime guaranteed, the basics are definitely covered.

You can get two packages: Standard and Enhanced. The Standard plan starts at $169 per month and comes with four cores with eight threads and 4GB RAM. Its 1TB HDD and RAID 1 storage mean DreamHost has more capacity than most other hosting services.

When it comes to the Enhanced package at $299 per month, you upgrade to 12 cores and 24 threads, 16GB RAM, and 2TB HDD with RAID 1 storage. It’s a big price jump, but remember that each feature more than doubles—and, in some cases, quadruples.

You can choose from three Standard levels and six Enhanced ones that go up to 64GB RAM.

With each package, you get root access so that you can control your settings even with a managed server. Plus, it comes with DDoS protection. 

The downside comes with the high price despite its fewer features. The most expensive option sits at a lofty $379.

DreamHost has international servers in the US, Asia, and Europe, making them a solid choice for international customers.

#4 InMotion—Best Dedicated Hosting for Technical Websites

InMotion accommodates businesses that have a lot of tech needs. This high-performance platform comes with features like:

  • 99.99% uptime
  • Tier 1 network
  • Free SSD
  • 24/7 support
  • Multi-layer defense
  • Fast start times

It might look at first like InMotion only offers basic packages, but their Bare Metal and Managed options have plenty more in store. At $99.99 per month, Bare Metal is an unmanaged server with full root access. You can choose your OS, get automation with Ansible, and get up to 15 IP addresses. You even have RAM options starting at 16GB.

The Managed option, at $139.99 per month, gives you a fully managed server with cPanel and WHM included. You also get automated backup, so you won’t have to worry about losing data. It’s Linux-based, so you only have one OS option, but you still have RAM starting at 16GB and 15 IP addresses.

InMotion offers a 30-day money-back guarantee and customized solutions for your website. Considering its features, it’s an affordable dedicated hosting service.

#5 A2 Hosting—Best Dedicated Hosting for Website Performance

A2 Hosting is known for keeping websites running at top speed. With a commitment to 99.9% uptime and 24/7 customer service, it has the tools to keep customers on your site.

A2 Hosting offers three options for management, including unmanaged and two types of managed servers. With the managed version, you have no root access. Core gives you root access to your managed server for more customizability.

They use the SwiftServer platform for faster performance and claim to give you a website up to 20 times faster than other hosts.

A2 Hosting comes with three tiers:

  • Sprint: $141.09 per month
  • Exceed: $207.49 per month
  • Mach: $290.49 per month

The Sprint package comes with 8GB RAM and 2x500GB storage with 10TB transfer. It gives you two cores with Intel 3.1+GHz.

The Exceed package offers a small upgrade with the same amount of RAM and storage. You get a 15TB transfer, plus four cores and Intel Xeon 2.4+GHz for a faster system.

With Mach, you make a wider jump to 16GB RAM, 1x1000GB storage, and 20TB transfer. This package sets you up for speed with over eight cores and the 2x Intel Xeon 2.1+GHz processor.

Unlike other hosting services, A2 Hosting has an anytime money-back guarantee.

#6 Liquid Web—Best for Customizable Dedicated Hosting

Liquid Web has fully customizable servers with real-time monitoring and root access. It looks pricey at first, but don’t let that deter you before you’ve explored what this hosting service has to offer.

Liquid Web comes with SeverSecure advanced security, Worldwide Cloudflare CDN, and business-grade storage. It also has a support team to manage its servers, and they offer 24/7/365 customer service.

You can get three packages of dedicated hosting service:

  • Intel Xeon 1230: $199 per month
  • Intel Xeon 4108: $299 per month
  • Intel Xeon Gold 6130: $499 per month

The Intel Xeon 1230 comes with four cores, 32GB RAM, and 5TB bandwidth. It gives you impressive storage with 2x240GB SSD on the primary disk and a 1x1TB SATA backup disk.

When you upgrade to Intel Xeon 4108, you double your cores, RAM, and storage on both the primary and backup disks. With 8TB bandwidth, you guarantee speed and performance.

Despite its significant price jump, the Intel Xeon Gold 6130 doesn’t seem to offer anything new in terms of RAM, storage, or bandwidth. However, you do get 16 cores.

Every package comes with 250 Acronis Cyber Backups. Liquid Web also has value bundles if the basic packages don’t meet your bandwidth or memory needs.

#7 TMDHosting—Best Dedicated Hosting for Quick Startup

TMDHosting might not be as big or fancy as other dedicated hosting services, but it does give you a quality site fast. It focuses on power and speed, so you’ll have no problem upgrading if your site struggles with lots of traffic or other changes. With fully managed servers, you don’t need to sweat the tech.

TMDHosting offers four dedicated hosting packages:

  • Starter: $159.95 per month
  • The Original: $199.95 per month
  • Smart: $249.95 per month
  • Super Powerful: $299.95 per month

For a basic package, Starter gives you an impressive 1TB storage with RAID-10. You also get four CPU cores with eight threads and 8GB DDR4 RAM, so you have plenty of space for everything on your site.

The Original upgrades you to 2TB storage and six CPU cores with 12 threads. You get the same amount of RAM, so it’s not a huge jump. Then again, neither is the price.

At the Smart level, you get the same amount of storage as the Original. The upgrades come in the form of eight CPU cores with 16 threads and 16GB DDR4 RAM.

At the top, Super Powerful comes with 2x2TB storage with RAID-10. You still get eight CPU cores and 16 threads, but with 32GB DDR4 RAM, you’ve got plenty of room for memory and storage.

Each level comes with unlimited bandwidth, free setup, premium support, and a cPanel and WHM. TMDHosting claims that they can have your website up and ready to go in 20 minutes, blowing the 24+ hours of other hosting services out of the water.

Summary

A website is only as good as its dedicated hosting service. Choose one that gives you everything you need, whether that’s speed, customization, or support when you need it. You can find dedicated hosting you trust, so explore your options and determine which one fits your business. Use this guide as a resource for narrowing down your options with our methodology and top choices.

The post Best Dedicated Hosting appeared first on Neil Patel.

Getting Business Credit Cards in a Recession: How to Establish Separate Business Credit

You can get business credit cards that do not report to personal credit. This is the case despite what’s going on with the novel coronavirus.

How to Establish Separate Business Credit: Get Business Credit Cards That Do Not Report to Personal Credit

What do you know about how to establish separate business credit? Business credit cards that do not report to personal credit are not out of reach. We know the secrets!

Remember that any inquiries into your consumer credit score will negatively impact that score. And a lot of merchants and lenders will carry out inquiries when working with you for the first time. Separate business credit means you keep business credit card inquiries from affecting your consumer credit.

COVID-19 and Recession Era Financing

As the novel coronavirus continues to

How to Establish Separate Business Credit: Get a D&B D-U-N-S number

Start at the D&B website and obtain a cost-free D-U-N-S number. A D-U-N-S number is how D&B gets a small business in their system, to generate 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 business. You can do this at https://www.creditsuite.com/reports/. If there is a record with them, check it for accuracy and completeness. If there are no records with them, go to the next step in the process.

This way, Experian and Equifax will have activity to report on.

How to Establish Separate Business Credit: File a DBA

If you operate a small business as a sole proprietor, then at the very least be sure to file for DBA (‘doing business as’) status.

If you do not, then your personal name is the same as the small business name. Because of this, you can find yourself being personally liable for all small business financial obligations.

Also, according to the Internal Revenue Service, with this structure there is a 1 in 7 possibility of an IRS audit. There is a 1 in 50 chance for corporations! Steer clear of confusion and significantly reduce the odds of an Internal Revenue Service audit as well.

And who would not want that?

But keep in mind – don’t treat a DBA filing as anything beyond a steppingstone to incorporating.

How to Establish Separate Business Credit: Go Beyond a DBA and Make Your Small Business a Distinct Legal Entity through Incorporation

Meet with your tax consultant or financial planner. And together, pick which legal entity (sole proprietor, LLC or S-Corp) will most effectively fit your company and particular financial circumstances.

Incorporation can also help to secure your personal assets. That is in the event of a lawsuit. Once your corporation or LLC is registered on your state’s Secretary of State’s website, you can then get a Business Federal Tax ID Number. So then you can open your business’s bank account.

How to Establish Separate Business Credit: Get an EIN

Visit the IRS website and get an EIN for the company. They’re free of charge. Pick a business entity such as corporation, LLC, etc.

A small business may get started as a sole proprietor. But they absolutely need to change to a variety of corporation or an LLC.

This is to diminish risk. And it will make best use of tax benefits.

A business entity matters when it comes to taxes and liability in case of litigation. A sole proprietorship means the entrepreneur is it when it comes to liability and taxes. Nobody 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.

How to Establish Separate Business Credit: Company Legitimacy

A small business must be reputable to lending institutions and merchants. That is why, a small business will need a professional-looking website and email address, with website hosting bought from a merchant such as GoDaddy.

And company phone numbers must have a listing on ListYourself.net.

At the same time the company telephone number should be toll-free (800 exchange or similar).

A corporation will also need a bank account dedicated strictly to it, and it must have all of the licenses essential for operation. These licenses all have to be in the accurate, accurate name of the company, with the same small business address and phone numbers.

So note that this means not just state licenses, but potentially also city licenses.

Find out why so many companies are using our proven methods to improve their business credit scores, even during a recession.

How to Establish Separate Business Credit: Build Business Credit

Business helps to protect a business owner’s personal assets, in the event of court action or business bankruptcy. Also, with two separate credit scores, an entrepreneur can get two separate cards from the same merchant. This effectively doubles purchasing power.

Another advantage is that even startup companies can do this. Going to a bank for a business loan can be a recipe for disappointment. But building small business credit, when done correctly, is a plan for success.

Consumer credit scores depend on payments but also additional components like credit utilization percentages. But for company credit, the scores truly only hinge on whether a company pays its debts in a timely manner.

Business credit is an asset which can help your business for years to come.

The Process

Growing small business credit is a process, and it does not happen automatically. A small business has to actively work to develop business credit. However, it can be done easily and quickly, and it is much quicker than developing individual credit scores.

Merchants are a big aspect of this process.

Doing the steps out of sequence will lead to repetitive denials. Nobody can start at the top with small business credit. For instance, you can’t start with store or cash credit from your bank. If you do you’ll get a rejection 100% of the time.

Starter Vendor Credit

First you need to establish 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 begin to get credit for numerous purposes, and from all sorts of places.

These varieties of accounts tend to be for things bought all the time, like marketing materials, shipping boxes, outdoor workwear, ink and toner, and office furniture.

But first of all, what is trade credit? These trade lines are credit issuers who give you starter credit when you have none now. Terms are oftentimes Net 30, versus revolving.

Therefore, 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, such as within 30 days on a Net 30 account.

Details

Net 30 accounts need to be paid in full within 30 days. 60 accounts have to be paid in full within 60 days. In comparison with revolving accounts, you have a set time when you have to pay back what you borrowed or the credit you made use of.

To start your business credit profile the right way, you should get approval for vendor accounts that report to the business credit reporting agencies. As soon as that’s done, you can then use the credit.

Then repay what you used, and the account is on report to Dun & Bradstreet, Experian, or Equifax.

Vendor Credit – It Helps

Not every vendor can help like true starter credit can. These are vendors that grant approval with negligible effort. You also need them to be reporting to one or more of the big three CRAs: Dun & Bradstreet, Equifax, and Experian.

Here are some stellar choices from us: https://www.creditsuite.com/blog/5-vendor-accounts-that-build-your-business-credit/

Uline

Uline is a true starter vendor. You can find them online at www.uline.com. They sell shipping, packing, and industrial supplies, and they report to Dun & Bradstreet and Experian. You MUST have a D-U-N-S number and an EIN before starting with them. They will ask for your company bank information. Your company address must be uniform everywhere. You need for an order to be $50 or more before they’ll report it. Your first few orders may need to be prepaid initially so your company can get approval for Net 30 terms.

  • How to apply with them:
  • Add an item to your shopping cart
  • Go to checkout
  • Select to Open an Account
  • Select to be invoiced
Crown Office Supplies

Crown Office Supplies is another true starter vendor. You can find them online at https://crownofficesupplies.com. They sell a variety of office supplies and take helping clients seriously. They say, “just starting your business, or maybe have an existing business, but you have a question regarding office supplies… we are here to help!” And they report to Dun and Bradstreet, Experian, and Equifax.

There is a $99.00 yearly fee, though they do report that fee to the business credit reporting agencies. For other purchases to report, the purchase must be at least $30.00. Terms are Net 30.

  • Here’s how to qualify:
  • Your corporate entity must be in good standing with the applicable Secretary of State
  • You must have an EIN and a D-U-N-S number
  • Business address (it has to match everywhere)
  • Business license (if applicable)
  • A corporate bank account
  • Corporation must be at least 60 days old
  • Membership fee is $99 annually upon approval

Apply online.

Grainger Industrial Supply

Grainger Industrial Supply is also a true starter vendor. You can find them online at www.grainger.com. They sell hardware, power tools, pumps and more. They also do fleet maintenance. And they report to D&B. You need a business license, EIN, and a D-U-N-S number.

  • To qualify, you need the following:
  • A business license (if applicable)
  • An EIN number
  • A company address matching everywhere
  • A company bank account
  • A D-U-N-S number from Dun & Bradstreet

Your corporate entity must be in good standing with the applicable Secretary of State. If your company does not have established credit, they will require additional documents. So, these are items like accounts payable, income statement, balance sheets, and the like.

Apply online or over the phone.

build separate business credit in a bad economy Credit SuiteStore Credit

Store credit comes from a variety of retail service providers.

You must use your Social Security Number and date of birth on these applications for verification purposes. For credit checks and guarantees, use the small business’s EIN on these credit applications.

Fleet Credit

Fleet credit is from businesses where you can purchase fuel, and fix and take care of vehicles. You must use your SSN and date of birth on these applications for verification purposes. For credit checks and guarantees, make certain to apply using the company’s EIN.

Cash Credit

These are companies such as Visa and MasterCard. You must use your SSN and date of birth on these applications for verification purposes. For credit checks and guarantees, use your EIN instead.

These are often MasterCard credit cards.

Accounts That Don’t Report

Non-reporting trade accounts can also be helpful. While you do want trade accounts to report to at least one of the CRAs, a trade account which does not report can also be of some worth.

You can always ask non-reporting accounts for trade references. Plus, credit accounts of any sort should help you to better even out business expenditures, consequently making financial planning less complicated.

More of How to Establish Separate Business Credit: Monitor Your Business Credit

Know what is happening with your credit. Make sure it is being reported and attend to any mistakes ASAP. Get in the habit of taking a look at credit reports. Dig into the particulars, not just the scores.

We can help you monitor business credit at Experian and D&B for a lot less than it would cost you at the CRAs. At Equifax, you can monitor your account at: www.equifax.com/business/business-credit-monitor-small-business.

Update Your Records

Update the data if there are errors or the data is incomplete. At D&B, you can do this at: https://iupdate.dnb.com/iUpdate/viewiUpdateHome.htm. For Experian, go here: www.experian.com/small-business/business-credit-information.jsp. So, for Equifax, go here: www.equifax.com/business/small-business.

Fix Your Business Credit

So, what’s all this monitoring for? It’s to dispute any errors in your records. Errors in your credit report(s) can be taken care of. But the CRAs usually want you to dispute in a particular way.

Get your small business’s PAYDEX report at: www.dnb.com/about-us/our-data.html. Get your company’s Experian report at: www.businesscreditfacts.com/pdp.aspx?pg=SearchForm. And get your Equifax business credit report at: www.equifax.com/business/credit-information.

Disputes

Disputing credit report mistakes generally means you mail a paper letter with duplicates of any evidence of payment with it. These are documents like receipts and cancelled checks. Never mail the original copies. Always mail copies and retain the original copies.

Fixing credit report mistakes also means you specifically itemize any charges you dispute. Make your dispute letter as crystal clear as possible. Be specific about the problems with your report. Use certified mail to have proof that you mailed in your dispute.

Dispute your or your business’s Equifax report by following the instructions here: www.equifax.com/small-business-faqs/#Dispute-FAQs.

You can dispute errors on your or your company’s Experian report by following the directions here: www.experian.com/small-business/business-credit-information.jsp.

And D&B’s PAYDEX Customer Service contact number is here: www.dandb.com/glossary/paydex.

A Word about Business Credit Building

Always use credit sensibly! Don’t borrow more than what you can pay off. Track balances and deadlines for payments. Paying on time and fully will do more to increase business credit scores than nearly anything else.

Building company credit pays off. Excellent business credit scores help a small business get loans. Your loan provider knows the small business can pay its financial obligations. They know the business is bona fide.

The company’s EIN links to high scores and lenders won’t feel the need to call for a personal guarantee.

Find out why so many companies are using our proven methods to improve their business credit scores, even during a recession.

How to Establish Separate Business Credit: Check Out Some of Our Favorite Credit Cards

Perks vary. So make sure to choose the perk you prefer from this range of options.

Secure Business Credit Cards for Fair Credit Scores

Capital One® Spark® Classic for Business

Have a look at the Capital One® Spark® Classic for Business. It has no yearly fee. There is no introductory APR offer. The regular APR is a variable 24.49%. You can get unlimited 1% cash back on every purchase for your company, with no minimum to redeem.

While this card is within reach if you have fair credit, beware of the APR. Yet if you can pay promptly, and completely, then it’s a bargain.

Find it here: https://www.capitalone.com/small-business/credit-cards/spark-classic/

Business Credit Cards for Extravagant Travel Points

Flat-rate Travel Rewards

Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business

Have a look at the Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business. It has an introductory yearly fee of $0 for the first year, which then rises to $95. The regular APR is 18.49%, variable due to the prime rate. There is no introductory annual percentage rate. Pay no transfer fees. Late fees go up to $39.

This card is excellent for travel if your expenses don’t fall under basic bonus categories. You can get unlimited double miles on all purchases, without any limits. Earn 5x miles on rental cars and hotels if you book through Capital One Travel.

Get an initial bonus of 50,000 miles. That’s the same as $500 in travel. But you only get it if you spend $4,500 in the initial 3 months from account opening. There is no foreign transaction fee. You will need a great to outstanding FICO rating to qualify.

Find it here: https://www.capitalone.com/small-business/credit-cards/spark-miles/

Bonus Travel Categories with a Sign-Up Offer

Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card

For a wonderful sign-up offer and bonus categories, have a look at the Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card.

Pay an annual fee of $95. Regular APR is 17.49 – 22.49%, variable. There is no introductory APR offer.

Get 100,000 bonus points after spending $15,000 in the first three months after account opening. This works out to $1,250 toward travel rewards if you redeem with Chase Ultimate Rewards.

Get 3 points per dollar of the initial $150,000 you spend with this card. So this is for purchases on travel, shipping, internet, cable, and phone services. Plus it includes advertising purchases made with social media sites and search engines each account anniversary year.

You can get 25% more in travel redemption when you redeem for travel via Chase Ultimate Rewards. You will need a good to outstanding FICO score to qualify.

Find it here: https://creditcards.chase.com/business-credit-cards/ink/business-preferred

No Annual Fee

Bank of America® Business Advantage Travel Rewards World MasterCard® credit card

For no yearly fee while still getting travel rewards, check out this card from Bank of America. It has no annual fee and a 0% introductory APR for purchases during the initial 9 billing cycles. Afterwards, its regular APR is 13.74 – 23.74% variable.

You can earn 30,000 bonus points when you make a minimum of $3,000 in net purchases. So this is within 90 days of your account opening. You can redeem these points for a $300 statement credit towards travel purchases.

Earn unlimited 1.5 points for every $1 you spend on all purchases, everywhere, every time. And this is no matter how much you spend.

Likewise get 3 points per every dollar spent when you book your travel (car, hotel, airline) through the Bank of America® Travel Center. There is no limit to the number of points you can get and points don’t expire.

You will need superb credit to get this one (as in, 700s or better).

Find it here: https://www.bankofamerica.com/smallbusiness/credit-cards/products/travel-rewards-business-credit-card/

Hotel Credit Card

Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card

Take 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 scores to get this card.

Points

You can earn 75,000 Marriott Bonvoy points after using your card to make purchases of $3,000 in the initial three months. Get 6x the points for eligible purchases at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels. You can get 4x the points at United States restaurants and filling stations. And you can get 4x the points on wireless telephone services bought directly from American service providers and on American purchases for shipping.

Get double points on all other eligible purchases.

Rewards

Also, you get a free night every year after your card anniversary. And you can earn another free night after you spend $60,000 on your card in a calendar year.

You get Marriott Bonvoy Silver Elite status with your Card. Plus, spend $35,000 on eligible purchases in a calendar year and get an upgrade to Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite status through the end of the next calendar year.

Plus, each calendar year you can get credit for 15 nights towards the next level of Marriott Bonvoy Elite status.

Find it here: https://creditcard.americanexpress.com/d/bonvoy-business/

Dependable Credit Cards for Fair to Poor Credit, Not Needing a Personal Guarantee

Brex Card for Startups

Take a look at the Brex Card for Startups. It has no annual fee.

You will not need to supply your Social Security number to apply. And you will not need to supply a personal guarantee. They will take your EIN.

Nevertheless, they do not accept every industry.

Additionally, there are some industries they will not work with, as well as others where they want more paperwork. For a list, go here: https://brex.com/legal/prohibited_activities/.

To determine creditworthiness, Brex checks a corporation’s cash balance, spending patterns, and investors.

You can get 7x points on rideshare. Get 4x on Brex Travel. Also, get triple points on restaurants. And get double points on recurring software payments. Get 1x points on everything else.

You can have bad credit (even a 300 FICO) to qualify.

Find it here: https://brex.com/lp/startups-higher-limits/

Find out why so many companies are using our proven methods to improve their business credit scores, even during a recession.

Flexible Financing Credit Cards – Take A Look at Your Alternatives!

The Plum Card® from American Express

Have a look at the Plum Card® from American Express. It has an initial yearly fee of $0 for the first year. Afterwards, pay $250 annually.

Get a 1.5% early pay discount cash back bonus when you pay within 10 days. You can take up to 60 days to pay without interest when you pay the minimum due by the payment due date.

You will need excellent to excellent credit to qualify.

Find it here: https://creditcard.americanexpress.com/d/the-plum-card-business-charge-card/

Unbeatable Cards for Jackpot Rewards That Never Expire

Capital One® Spark® Cash Select for Business

Check out the Capital One® Spark® Cash Select for Business. It has no yearly fee. You can get 1.5% cash back on every purchase. There is no limit on the cash back you can earn. And earn a one-time $200 cash bonus once you spend $3,000 on purchases in the initial three months. Rewards never expire.

Pay a 0% introductory APR for 9 months. Then pay 14.49% – 22.49% variable APR after that.

You will need good to superb credit to qualify.

Find it here: https://www.capitalone.com/small-business/credit-cards/spark-cash-select/

Exceptional Business Credit Cards with No Annual Fee

No Annual Fee/Flat Rate Cash Back

Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card

Have a look at the Ink Business Unlimited℠ Credit Card. Past no annual fee, get an introductory 0% APR for the first 12 months. After that, the APR is a variable 14.74 – 20.74%.

You can earn unlimited 1.5% Cash Back rewards on every purchase made for your corporation. And get $500 bonus cash back after spending $3,000 in the first 3 months from account opening. You can redeem your rewards for cash back, gift cards, travel and more using Chase Ultimate Rewards®. You will need superb credit to receive this card.

Find it here: https://creditcards.chase.com/business-credit-cards/ink/unlimited

Company Credit Cards with a 0% Introductory APR – Pay Zero!

Blue Business® Plus Credit Card from American Express

Check out the Blue Business® Plus Credit Card from American Express. It has no yearly fee. There is a 0% introductory APR for the first year. After that, the APR is a variable 14.74 – 20.74%.

Get double Membership Rewards® points on day to day company purchases like office supplies or client suppers for the first $50,000 spent per year. Get 1 point per dollar afterwards.

You will need good to exceptional credit to qualify.

Find it here: https://creditcard.americanexpress.com/d/bluebusinessplus-credit-card/

American Express® Blue Business Cash Card

Also check out the American Express® Blue Business Cash Card. Keep in mind: 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.

Get 2% cash back on all qualified purchases on up to $50,000 per calendar year. After that get 1%.

It has no yearly fee. There is a 0% introductory APR for the first year. After that, the APR is a variable 14.74 – 20.74%.

You will need good to excellent credit scores to qualify.

Find it here: https://creditcard.americanexpress.com/d/business-bluecash-credit-card/

Terrific Cards for Cash Back

Flat-Rate Rewards

Capital One ® Spark® Cash for Business

Take a look at the Capital One® Spark® Cash for Business. It has an introductory $0 annual fee for the initial year. Afterwards, this card costs $95 annually. 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 initial 3 months from account opening. Get unlimited 2% cash back. Redeem any time without any minimums.

You will need good to outstanding credit scores to qualify.

Find it here: https://www.capitalone.com/small-business/credit-cards/spark-cash/

Flat-Rate Rewards and No Yearly Fee

Discover it® Business Card

Have a look at the Discover it® Business Card. It has no yearly fee. There is an introductory APR of 0% on purchases for one year. Then the regular APR is a variable 14.49 – 22.49%.

Get unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases, with no category restrictions or bonuses. They double the 1.5% Cashback Match™ at the end of the first year. There is no minimum spend requirement.

You can download transactions| quickly to Quicken, QuickBooks, and Excel. Note: you will need good to outstanding credit scores to receive this card.

https://www.discover.com/credit-cards/business/   

Bonus Categories

Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card

Check out the Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card. It has no yearly fee. There is a 0% introductory APR for the initial year. After that, the APR is a variable 14.74 – 20.74%. You can get a $500 one-time cash bonus after spending $3,000 in the first three months from account opening.

You can earn 5% cash back on the initial $25,000 spent in combined purchases at office supply stores and on internet, cable, and phone services each account anniversary year.

Get 2% cash back on the initial $25,000 spent in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants each account anniversary year. Earn 1% cash back on all other purchases. There is no limitation to the amount you can get.

You will need excellent credit scores to qualify for this card.

Find it here: https://creditcards.chase.com/business-credit-cards/ink/cash?iCELL=61GF

Boosted Cash Back Categories

Bank of America® Business Advantage Cash Rewards MasterCard® credit card

Have a look at the Bank of America® Business Advantage Cash Rewards MasterCard® credit card. Get an 0% introductory APR for the initial 9 billing cycles of the account. Afterwards, the APR is 13.74% – 23.74% variable. There is no yearly fee. You can get a $300 statement credit offer.

Get 3% cash back in the category of your choice. So these are filling stations (default), office supply stores, travel, TV/telecom & wireless, computer services or business consulting services. Get 2% cash back on dining. So this is for the initial $50,000 in combined choice category/dining purchases each calendar year. Then earn 1% after, with no limits.

You will need exceptional credit scores to qualify.

Find it here: https://promo.bankofamerica.com/smallbusinesscards2/

The Perfect Business Credit Cards for You

Your perfect business credit cards are dependent on your credit history and scores.

Only you can determine which advantages you want and need. So be sure to do your research. What is excellent for you could be disastrous for someone else.

And, as always, make sure to build credit in the recommended order for the best, fastest benefits.

How to Establish Separate Business Credit: Takeaways

Bolster the professionalism of your company and learn how to establish separate business credit.

You can get business credit cards that do not report to personal credit. Learn more here and get started in getting business credit cards that do not report to personal credit. The COVID-19 situation will not last forever.

The post Getting Business Credit Cards in a Recession: How to Establish Separate Business Credit appeared first on Credit Suite.

Start Building Corporate Credit Fast in a Recession – Yes, You Can!

Start Building Corporate Credit Fast in a Recession

Building corporate credit fast in a recession means that your small business gets chances you never assumed you would. Developing corporate credit opens doors.

Every Company Needs Corporate Credit Building

Corporate credit is credit in a small business’s name. It doesn’t tie to an entrepreneur’s individual credit, not even if the owner is a sole proprietor and the solitary employee of the small business.

Therefore, an entrepreneur’s business and personal credit scores can be very different.

Building Corporate Credit Fast in a Recession: The Benefits

Since corporate credit is independent from personal, it helps to secure an entrepreneur’s personal assets, in the event of legal action or business bankruptcy.

Also, with two separate credit scores, an entrepreneur can get two separate cards from the same vendor. This effectively doubles purchasing power.

Another advantage is that even startup ventures can do this. Heading to a bank for a business loan can be a formula for disappointment. But building corporate credit, when done properly, is a plan for success.

Individual credit scores depend upon payments but also additional components like credit utilization percentages.

But for corporate credit, the scores really only hinge on if a company pays its invoices timely.

Building Corporate Credit Fast in a Recession: The Process

Building corporate credit is a process, and it does not occur automatically. A business will need to proactively work to develop corporate credit.

That being said, it can be done easily and quickly, and it is much faster than developing individual credit scores.

Merchants are a big aspect of this process.

Undertaking the steps out of sequence will cause repetitive rejections. Nobody can start at the top with company credit. For example, you can’t start with retail or cash credit from your bank. If you do, you’ll get a denial 100% of the time.

Company Fundability

A business must be fundable to credit issuers and merchants.

As a result, a company will need a professional-looking web site and email address. And it needs to have site hosting from a supplier such as GoDaddy.

Plus, company phone numbers ought to have a listing on ListYourself.net.

In addition, the business telephone number should be toll-free (800 exchange or comparable).

A small business will also need a bank account devoted strictly to it, and it has to have all of the licenses essential for running.

Licenses

These licenses all have to be in the exact, accurate name of the small business. And they must have the same company address and telephone numbers.

So bear in mind, that this means not just state licenses, but possibly also city licenses.

Find out why so many companies are using our proven methods to improve their business credit scores, even during a recession.

Working with the Internal Revenue Service

Visit the Internal Revenue Service website and obtain an EIN for the business. They’re free of charge. Pick a business entity such as corporation, LLC, etc.

A business can start off as a sole proprietor. But they will probably wish to switch to a type of corporation or an LLC.

This is in order to diminish risk. And it will optimize tax benefits.

A business entity will matter when it comes to tax obligations and liability in the event of litigation. A sole proprietorship means the entrepreneur is it when it comes to liability and taxes. Nobody else is responsible.

Sole Proprietors Take Note

If you run a small business as a sole proprietor, then at least be sure to file for a DBA. This is ‘doing business as’ status.

If you do not, then your personal name is the same as the small business name. Because of this, you can find yourself being personally responsible for all company debts.

Also, per the Internal Revenue Service, by having this arrangement there is a 1 in 7 possibility of an IRS audit. There is a 1 in 50 possibility for corporations! Steer clear of confusion and drastically lower the odds of an Internal Revenue Service audit at the same time.

But never look at a DBA filing as ever being anything more than a steppingstone to incorporation.

Starting Off the Corporate Credit Reporting Process

Start at the D&B website and obtain a cost-free D-U-N-S number. A D-U-N-S number is how D&B gets a company in their system, to generate 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 will have something to report on.

Vendor Credit

First you need to build trade lines that report. This is also known as vendor credit. Then you’ll have an established credit profile, and you’ll get a corporate credit score.

And with an established corporate credit profile and score you can begin to get retail and cash credit.

These varieties of accounts often tend to be for the things bought all the time, like marketing materials, shipping boxes, outdoor work wear, ink and toner, and office furniture.

But first off, what is trade credit? These trade lines are credit issuers who will give you preliminary credit when you have none now. Terms are frequently Net 30, instead of revolving.

So, if you get approval for $1,000 in vendor credit and use all of it, you must pay that money back in a set term, such as within 30 days on a Net 30 account.

Find out why so many companies are using our proven methods to improve their business credit scores, even during a recession.

Details

Net 30 accounts need to be paid in full within 30 days. 60 accounts must be paid in full within 60 days. In comparison with revolving accounts, you have a set time when you have to pay back what you borrowed or the credit you made use of.

To kick off your corporate credit profile properly, you need to get approval for vendor accounts that report to the corporate credit reporting agencies. As soon as that’s done, you can then use the credit.

Then repay what you used, and the account is on report to Dun & Bradstreet, Experian, or Equifax.

Vendor Credit – It Makes Sense

Not every vendor can help in the same way true starter credit can. These are merchants that will grant an 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.

You want 3 of these to move onto the next step, which is retail credit.Building Corporate Credit Fast in a Recession Credit Suite

Accounts That Don’t Report

Non-Reporting Trade Accounts can also be helpful. While you do want trade accounts to report to at the very least one of the CRAs, a trade account which does not report can yet be of some worth.

You can always ask non-reporting accounts for trade references. And credit accounts of any sort ought to help you to better even out business expenditures, thus making budgeting simpler. These are providers like PayPal Credit, T-Mobile, and Best Buy.

Retail Credit

Once there are 3 or more vendor trade accounts reporting to at least one of the CRAs, then progress to retail credit. These are businesses such as Office Depot and Staples.

Just use your Social Security Number and date of birth on these applications for verification purposes. For credit checks and guarantees, use the small business’s EIN on these credit applications.

Fleet Credit

Are there more accounts reporting? Then move onto fleet credit. These are businesses such as BP and Conoco. Use this credit to buy fuel, and to repair, and take care of vehicles. Just use your Social Security Number and date of birth on these applications for verification purposes. For credit checks and guarantees, make sure to apply using the company’s EIN.

Find out why so many companies are using our proven methods to improve their business credit scores, even during a recession.

Cash Credit

Have you been sensibly handling the credit you’ve gotten up to this point? Then move to more universal cash credit. These are service providers such as Visa and MasterCard. Only use your SSN and date of birth on these applications for verification purposes. For credit checks and guarantees, use your EIN instead.

These are usually MasterCard credit cards. If you have more trade accounts reporting, then these are doable.

Building Corporate Credit Fast in a Recession: Monitor Your Corporate Credit

Know what is happening with your credit. Make certain it is being reported and fix any inaccuracies ASAP. Get in the habit of taking a look at credit reports. Dig into the specifics, not just the scores.

We can help you monitor corporate credit at Experian and D&B for 90% less than it would cost you at the CRAs.

Update Your Information

Update the information if there are errors or the information is incomplete.

Building Corporate Credit Fast in a Recession: Fix Your Corporate Credit

So, what’s all this monitoring for? It’s to challenge any problems in your records. Errors in your credit report(s) can be fixed. But the CRAs often want you to dispute in a particular way.

Disputes

Disputing credit report inaccuracies usually means you send a paper letter with duplicates of any proof of payment with it. These are documents like receipts and cancelled checks. Never send the originals. Always mail copies and retain the original copies.

Fixing credit report mistakes also means you precisely detail any charges you dispute. Make your dispute letter as crystal clear as possible. Be specific about the issues with your report. Use certified mail so that you will have proof that you mailed in your dispute.

Building Corporate Credit Fast in a Recession: A Word about Corporate Credit Building

Always use credit sensibly! Don’t borrow beyond what you can pay off. Track balances and deadlines for repayments. Paying promptly and completely will do more to boost corporate credit scores than almost anything else.

Establishing corporate credit pays. Great corporate credit scores help a company get loans. Your loan provider knows the small business can pay its debts. They recognize the small business is authentic.

The small business’s EIN links to high scores and lending institutions won’t feel the need to call for a personal guarantee.

Building Corporate Credit Fast in a Recession: Takeaway

Corporate credit is an asset which can help your small business for many years to come. Learn more here and get started toward building corporate credit fast in a recession. Yes, it’s possible!

The post Start Building Corporate Credit Fast in a Recession – Yes, You Can! appeared first on Credit Suite.

Trump Gives Schumer an Assist

The President writes a $2,000 check to make Democrats the majority.

The post Trump Gives Schumer an Assist appeared first on ROI Credit Builders.

Should You Add Buy Now, Pay Later Options to Your E-commerce Site?

There have never been as many ways to pay online as there are today. Nor has it ever been more important to make sure you offer your consumers their preferred option.

For some, that might be a long-trusted Visa or Mastercard. Others may prefer Apple Pay, PayPal, or another digital wallet. And, increasingly, consumers are choosing to use buy now, pay later solutions when they checkout.

But what is this payment solution? And is it time you added buy now, pay later to your website? Read on to get my views on the topic.  

What is Buy now, Pay Later?

The name says it all. “Buy now, pay later” literally lets consumers buy a product and have it delivered while delaying payment until a later date.

This option is very similar to the old-school layaway method, in which stores let consumers reserve an item while paying it off in installments. Once all payments were made, they’d then be able to take the item home.

Buy now, pay later offers an even more consumer-friendly alternative to layaways. There’s no need to wait to access the item until it’s paid off in full—consumers only have to wait for their items for as long as they take to reach their doorsteps.

You’ve probably seen buy now, pay later payment options at checkouts in many places you shop. Mattress company Leesa partners with Affirm. Anthropologie partners with Klarna. Sezzle partners with Bodega.

Unlike layaways, consumers don’t necessarily use buy now, pay later to fund expensive purchases. They use the payment method to buy all kinds of things, from everyday needs like clothing and homeware to big-ticket items like fitness equipment.

Buy Now Pay Later Apps Peloton

While there are several options for buying now and paying later, they all broadly offer the same thing. The consumer gets to make repayments over several installments (typically between two and four) or in full within 14 to 30 days. Failing to pay will usually result in a fee, but not always.

One of the reasons buy now, pay later solutions are proving so popular is because they offer consumers an easier way to access credit. Unlike credit cards, which require users to hand over a lot of information and pass a rigorous credit check, buy now, pay later providers only ask for a consumer’s name, email address, date of birth, and billing address.

The solutions also mirror the purchasing habits of young consumers who are more likely to buy a selection of items, try them out at home, and then return the ones they don’t want. Returns are often more manageable and less stressful using a buy now, pay later solution since consumers don’t pay for the products in the first place.

6 Reasons to Add Buy Now, Pay Later Options to Your E-Commerce Site

It’s not just consumers who like buy now, pay later solutions. There’s a lot to like about them from a store owner’s point of view, too.

Here are six benefits to buy now, pay later.

Potential Sales Increases With Buy Now, Pay Later

When you allow consumers to spread out payments, they may be more likely to make a purchase. Consumers don’t even have to have the money in their account to buy your products.

They just have to be confident they can pay for them in the next few weeks. This is particularly handy for capturing consumers with paydays on the horizon.

The increase in conversions can be particularly dramatic if your items are higher priced, as consumers may be more willing to buy something pricey they otherwise wouldn’t when they can split the payment into manageable chunks.

Buy Now, Pay Later May Entice New Customers

More and more consumers are choosing this payment option. Even if they have the cash in their banks, there is little downside to spreading the payments out when they aren’t charged interest.

That means some consumers might actively look for stores that offer their favorite buy now, pay later options. Recognizing this, many buy now, pay later providers offer lists of where the service can be used. Some, like Klarna, even have apps allowing consumers to shop online directly through them.

Buy Now, Pay Later Could Build Trust

It used to be almost impossible to get a trial period for many consumer products, but buy now, pay later often makes this possible. By purchasing via a buy now, pay later solution, consumers can test out your product without committing to the purchase.

If they like it, they can pay as usual. If not, they can return it without having to worry about getting a full refund since they haven’t spent much, if anything, yet.

A small increase in free returns may cost you more in the short-term, but the long-term benefits of increased consumer loyalty can be substantial.

Customers may see you have enough confidence in your products to risk the possibility of returns and trust them enough to make good judgment calls for themselves, free of the questioning they may get in stores.

You May Decrease Cart Abandonment With Buy Now, Pay Later

Around 6% of cart abandonments are caused by a lack of payment options, according to the Baymard Institute. If you increase payment options by including a buy now, pay later solution, you may see a decrease in your abandonment rates.

Buy Now Pay Later Apps can lower cart abandonment

That’s not all, though.

Buy now, pay later can also make your checkout process much smoother. Consumers don’t have to enter card details or a billing address; they only need to log in with their Klarna or Affirm account. This fact is important because 28% abandoned their carts because they didn’t want to create an account, and 17% didn’t trust the sites with their information.

Your Competitors May Already Use Buy Now, Pay Later

If your competitors haven’t already integrated at least one buy now, pay later solution into their checkout, the chances are high they will do it soon. Research shows one-third of US-based e-commerce stores plan to integrate a purchase finance option over the next one to two years.

If you fail to keep up with consumer demands, you’ll inevitably lose customers to competitors that do keep pace.

Buy Now, Pay Later May Give Consumers a Better Credit Solution

The fact of the matter is buy now, pay later is a much more affordable finance solution than credit cards for many consumers. Not only that, they are often a much safer form of debt than credit cards or payday loans.

The former can have double-digit interest rates, while the latter can trap you into a spiral of debt. And if your customers need those to pay for things, they may hesitate to make purchases at all or end up in a financial situation where they can’t become a repeat customer.

You may worry about selling to customers who can’t afford the products up front, but don’t worry: like credit cards, buy now, pay later companies pay you when the transaction is made, and it’s on them to pursue non-paying customers.

3 Reasons Not to Add Buy Now, Pay Later to Your E-commerce Site

Buy now, pay later tools aren’t perfect for everyone. As a consumer finance solution, there are some issues you need to consider.

Buy Now, Pay Later Services Often Require Higher Fees

There’s a cost for the increased conversion rates and new customers that buy now, pay later can bring. They come in the form of higher fees. Klarna, for instance, charges a $0.30 fee and a variable charge of up to 5.99%. That’s significantly higher than almost all Visa and Mastercard payment gateways.

It’s not just the higher fees you need to worry about. There’s also the opportunity cost of listing another payment solution. Every time consumers use a buy now, pay later option, they are choosing not to use another payment option with lower fees.

Buy Now, Pay Later Could Encourage Consumer Debt

While buy now, pay later solutions are marketed as consumer-friendly finance products, some critics believe they are just another way to trick consumers into taking on more debt than they need.  

This is true whether you sell t-shirts at $10 a pop or mattresses for $1,000. Buy now, pay later encourages consumers to take out credit agreements with third-parties even if they can already afford to pay for the product in cash.

You Could Risk Your Reputation if Buy Now, Pay Later Problems Arise

Owing to the issues above, buy now, pay later solutions have received a lot of negative media coverage. There’s every chance these solutions may be looked on favorably in the future given the value they provide for some consumers—but only time will tell.

If negative media coverage of these solutions grows, and public opinion turns against these options, brands that facilitated these payments may become targets.

However, this coverage could disappear or improve as people become more used to these products, so it’s something to consider but not necessarily something to panic over.

Best Buy Now, Pay Later Tools

Competition in the buy now, pay later space is fierce and growing. That means consumers have more options. You’ll probably want to consider having more than one buy now, pay later option to keep consumers happy.

Here are some of the leading players you should consider integrating into your checkout.

Klarna

Buy Now Pay Later Apps Klarna

Klarna is a Swedish bank and one of the most prominent players in the buy now, pay later market, partnering with thousands of businesses in almost 20 countries. The platform offers users two ways to make repayments: “slice it” and “pay later.”

With slice it, consumers pay for purchases in four installments over six weeks. With pay later, consumers receive a bill for the full amount after 30 days. The payments are interest-free for consumers who qualify. Brands using Klarna include Uniqlo, H&M, and Anthropologie.

Affirm

Buy Now Pay Later Apps Affirm

Affirm is designed to help consumers finance purchases of all sizes. It supports small, everyday purchases like the rest of the solutions in this list, with interest-free payments split over weeks or months.

It also helps consumers make more significant purchases or needs like car repairs with interest-bearing loans spread over six to 18 months. How long consumers spread out the payments is up to them.

Affirm also doesn’t charge any fees, including late and repayments fees. There’s no fee to open or close an account, either. Brands using Affirm include Peloton, Walmart, and adidas.

Quadpay

Buy Now Pay Later Apps Quadpay

Quadpay lets consumers split purchases into four installments paid over six weeks when they shop online or in-store. Approval is instant and performed using soft credit checks.

There’s no need for store owners to install Quadpay at their checkouts. The payment tool is available anywhere Visa is accepted because the company provides users with their own Quadpay Visa card numbers.

All your customers need to do is choose the retailer and enter the purchase amount—Quadpay takes care of everything else.

Sezzle

Buy Now Pay Later Apps Sezzle

Sezzle lets consumers split purchases into four interest-free payments due over six weeks. There are no fees if consumers pay on time, and there’s no impact on their credit ratings.

Sezzle partners with over 24,000 stores, including Brandless, YoungLA, and GHOST, and integrates with all leading e-commerce platforms.

Afterpay

Buy Now Pay Later Afterpay

Afterpay lets consumers make interest-free purchases and repay the amount with four equal payments due every two weeks. If consumers miss a payment, Afterpay charges them $10. A further $7 will be charged if they fail to make payment within a week.

Afterpay differs from some lenders on this list by approving users for every purchase rather than approving an account. The company has stated its algorithm has been programmed to favor users who have previously used the service and paid on time. Participating brands include Jimmy Choo, lululemon, and UGG.

Conclusion

It’s essential to provide as many payment options as possible and give your consumers their preferred choices. Integrating a buy now, pay later solution can result in more sales, decrease cart abandonment rates, and build trust.

You also need to consider drawbacks, like the higher rates that come with buy now, pay later options.

Will you be adding a buy now, pay later solution to your site, and if so, which one?

The post Should You Add Buy Now, Pay Later Options to Your E-commerce Site? appeared first on Neil Patel.

How to Check Business Credit Score for Free?

The answer for “How to Check Credit Score” is different for business credit than for personal credit. Most everyone realizes you can check your personal credit score for free.  There are dozens of websites that let you do so.  In fact, for personal credit you can get a free annual credit report. It’s easy to check credit score for personal credit. However, many do not realize it isn’t so easy to get your hands on your business credit score.  Is there even a way to check business credit score for free? 

Is There a Way to See Your Business Credit Score for Free? 

The truth is, there isn’t currently a way to check business credit score for free on a regular basis.  There is no way to monitor business credit score progress for free. There are, however, a couple of ways to get a snapshot view of what your business credit score is without paying.  After that, you can take steps to ensure it either stays strong, or start building a stronger score. 

How to Check Business Credit Score for Free

Here is a list of business credit monitoring programs that offer trials or a one-time “peek” at your business credit score for free. 

Keep your business protected with our professional business credit monitoring

Nav

This is a service that will allow you to see a summary of your credit reports from all three of the major credit reporting agencies.  These are only summaries, not full reports.  Generally, that means you can see your score, and maybe the accounts you have listed.  This will help you see where you stand. Still, it will not suffice for the purpose of correcting mistakes. You really won’t even be able to see what you need to do to improve your score. If you want more info however, you can pay for it.

Credit.net

This company does not offer ongoing free business credit reports.  However, you can access a free trial.  The best part about this one is, there is no credit card required.  After you pull the report, you have 30 days to view it.  This is a great option because there is no fear of missing a cancelation deadline and having to pay anyway. 

Scorely check business credit score for free Credit Suite

Scorely is a lesser known credit reporting agency. It will let you see your credit report for free before you pay for a subscription.  In contrast to Nav or Credit.net, they calculate their own score. In this way, they are similar to the big 3 (Experian, Equifax, and Dun & Bradstreet.)  

CreditSafe

This is another that requires you to pay for an ongoing subscription. Yet, they will give you a free credit report to get you started.   If you do subscribe, they have a number of reports that are unique to them.  This means you are getting something that you may not get with the other monitoring services or even the standard reports from the Dun & Bradstreet, Experian, or Equifax. Like Scorely, these reports are from CreditSafe directly and not related to reports you would receive from Experian, Equifax, or Dun & Bradstreet. 

Business Loan Denial

If a lender denies you for a business loan based on your business credit, you can get a free copy of the business credit report used by the lender to make that decision. Of course, this is not a fun way to see your business credit score for free. After the decision to deny, you will get a letter in the mail from the agency that provided the lender with your report.  You will be able to request a free copy of the report that the lender saw. Then, you can see why the result was denial. You have 90 days to submit your request.

Life After a Free Credit Score Check 

Now, suppose you get your sneak peek and you do get to check business credit score for free once. What then? If it’s good, you just have to keep it that way.  However, what if it isn’t great? A free look doesn’t really do a lot to help you in that department. This is why regular business credit monitoring is really worth paying for. 

However, regardless of how you figure out your business credit score, if it is bad or non-existent you need a plan.  Here are 3 common issues that  pop up in relation to fundability, and how to fix them. 

#1-Business Accounts Reporting to Personal Credit

It doesn’t matter how consistently you pay your business accounts on time, if they are reporting to your personal credit report, you are not building business credit.  This means you will not even have a business credit score.  If you do, it will not be as strong as it could be because it doesn’t include all the accounts.  

There are a few reasons why this could be happening. 

Keep your business protected with our professional business credit monitoring

Your Business Does Not Have Its Own Contact Information

Your contact information is one of many things that connects your personal credit report to you as an individual.  Think about it.  Have you ever had to answer questions about past addresses or something similar when applying for credit?  It’s one way they check identity.  

If you and your business share the same address and phone number, your payments on business accounts are going to report to your personal credit report, not a business credit report.  Now, there is a chance it could report to both, but you don’t want that either.  Business expenses are high, and using personal credit to fund them can cause your debt-to-credit ratio to be high.  That, in turn, can drastically lower your personal credit score.  There is no need for this to happen. 

On the contrary, you can get a business phone number easily that will work over the internet instead of phone lines.  In fact, the phone number will forward to any phone you want it too so you can just use your personal cell phone or landline.  When someone calls your business number it will ring straight to you. 

A virtual office is a great way to get a separate business address without having to have a whole separate location. This is a business that offers a physical address for a fee, and sometimes they even offer mail service and live receptionist services.  In addition, there are some that offer meeting spaces for those times you may need to meet a client or customer in person. 

You Don’t Have an EIN

An EIN is a number that works for your business the same way your SSN works for you as an individual. Your SSN links to your personal credit report as well, so if you use it to apply for credit, even in your business name, that account will report to your personal credit report. Get an EIN for free on the IRS website. 

Your Business Isn’t Incorporated

Incorporating is a huge step in separating your business from yourself.  That is really the only way to establish your business as an entity in and of itself that has its own credit.  It doesn’t really matter for credit purposes if you form an S-corp, LLC, or corporation.  That will depend on your budget and needs for liability protection. Check with your attorney or tax preparer to determine which option is best for you. 

#2 Can’t Get Approval for Accounts that Report to Business Credit

The next issue that many have with building business credit is that it is seemingly impossible to get credit without first having credit. How do you ever get accounts reporting and build strong business credit if you do not have the business credit score they want to see to get approval? 

There are a couple of things that can help with this.  The first is vendor credit from starter vendors.  This term refers to vendors that will extend net terms on invoices without a credit check.  Then, when you pay the invoice, they will report that payment to at least one of the business credit reporting agencies.  Once enough of these types of accounts are reporting, you should be able to get approval from basic store credit, and then you can build from there. 

The other way to remedy this issue is to apply for the Credit Line Hybrid. This is an unsecured line of credit.  You need to have good personal credit, but if you apply in your business name and your business is set up properly, it will report to some of the business credit reporting agencies. 

If you do not have a personal credit score of at least 685, then you can take on a credit partner that does.  You will still get the benefits of the payments being reported to your business’s credit report. 

Keep your business protected with our professional business credit monitoring

#3 Bank Declines Due to Fraud Concerns

Chances are, if this is the reason you are denied, you will never know it.  That is of course, unless you do get to check business credit score for free and it’s fine.  Then you will know your business credit score was not the reason for denial.  You can be denied for fraud concerns even if you have excellent business credit.  The problem occurs when fraud warning flags start flying up. Scammers are running rampant these days, and lenders aren’t looking to get duped.  Even seemingly small inconsistencies can lead to denial.

For example, if your business name isn’t listed the same everywhere, you very well may be denied.  Like, if you use an ampersand on your incorporation paperwork, but you use the word “and” on your business website, that very well could block your approval.  

The same is true for your business address. If you move to a new location and forget to change the address on insurance documents, you could end up with a denial.  All business information has to be consistent across the board. 

Can You Check Business Credit Score for Free?

The answer to this question is essentially yes, sort of.  You can check business credit score for free at least once, or more than once if you switch up the service you use.  However, you cannot consistently monitor your credit score without paying. It can’t hurt to see what’s happening, but it is only a snapshot.  It is typically worth the money to pay for an on-going monitoring service.

That said, if you understand the reasons why you may be denied, you can make sure you shore up the banks and eliminate those reasons.  This includes setting up your business so that business credit accounts report to business credit and not personal credit. It also means doing what needs to be done to get accounts reporting, and ensuring your business information is consistently the same everywhere.  

The post How to Check Business Credit Score for Free? appeared first on Credit Suite.

How to Boost Your SEO by Using Schema Markup

How to Boost Your SEO by Using Schema Markup

One of the latest evolutions in SEO is called schema markup. This new form of optimization is one of the most powerful but least-utilized forms of SEO available today. Once you grasp the concept and method of schema markup, you can boost your website in the search engine result pages (SERPs).

My goal in this article is to show you exactly how to get started using schema markup for your website.

What is Schema Markup?

Schema markup is code (semantic vocabulary) that you place on your website to help the search engines return more informative results for users. If you’ve ever used rich snippets, you’ll understand exactly what schema markup is all about.

Here’s an example of a local business that has markup on its event schedule page. The SERP entry looks like this:

google search result schema for SEO

The schema markup told the SERP to display a schedule of upcoming hotel events. That, for the user, is exceptionally helpful.

Here are some facts about schema markup:

Schema Tells Search Engines What Data Means

The content on your website gets indexed and returned in search results. Obviously. But with schema markup, some of that content gets indexed and returned in a different way.

How? Because the markup tells the search engine what that content means. For example, let’s say the word “Neil Patel” appears in an article. The search engine sees this, and produces a SERP entry with “Neil Patel.”

However, if I put the right schema markup around the name “Neil Patel,” I’ve just told that search engine that “Neil Patel” is the author of the article, not just a couple of random words. The search engine then provides results that display better information for the user who was searching for “Neil Patel.”

Schema.org explains it this way:

Most webmasters are familiar with HTML tags on their pages. Usually, HTML tags tell the browser how to display the information included in the tag. For example, <h1>Avatar</h1> tells the browser to display the text string “Avatar” in a heading 1 format. However, the HTML tag doesn’t give any information about what that text string means — “Avatar” could refer to the hugely successful 3D movie, or it could refer to a type of profile picture—and this can make it more difficult for search engines to intelligently display relevant content to a user.

Schema Markup Uses a Unique Semantic Vocabulary in Microdata Format

You don’t need to learn any new coding skills. Web pages with markup still use HTML. The only difference is adding bits of schema.org vocabulary to HTML Microdata.

Schema.org, the Website for Schema Markup, is a Collaborative Effort by The Teams at Google, Bing, and Yahoo

It’s not too often that competitors come together to help each other, but Schema.org is exactly that kind of inter-industry collaboration. What you have, then, is an agreed-upon set of code markers that tells the major search engines what to do with the data on your website.

Schema Markup Was Invented for Users

When a website has schema markup in place, users can see in the SERPs what a website is all about, where they are, what they do, how much stuff costs, plus plenty of other stuff. Some people have taken to calling schema markup “your virtual business card.”

This is a user-focused improvement. Search engines exist for users to gain the information they need. Schema markup does exactly that.

Why is Schema Important?

Schema markup helps your website rank better for all kinds of content types. There is data markup for a ton of different types of data, including:

  • Articles
  • Local businesses
  • Restaurants
  • TV episodes and ratings
  • Book reviews
  • Movies
  • Software applications
  • Events
  • Products
  • Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

There are hundreds of markup types—from toy stores to medical dose schedules. If you have any type of data on your website, there’s a good chance that it will have an associated itemscope and itemtype.

Websites that use schema markup will rank better in the SERPs than companies without markup. One study determined that websites with markup rank an average of four positions higher in the SERPs than those without schema markup. While it’s not totally clear that this higher result is due to the markup alone, there is obviously some correlation.

Right now, one-third of Google’s search results incorporate rich snippets, which includes schema markup. However, according to recent research, less than one-third of websites use schema markup.

In other words, there are millions of websites missing out on a huge source of SEO potential. If you use schema markup, you’ll automatically have a leg up on the majority of your competition.

How to Use Schema Markup for SEO

Now, let’s talk about how to use schema markup. Your goal is to rank better, look better, and do better in the SERPs and in front of users.

Schema markup will help you. With your website in hand, follow these steps.

1. Go to Google’s Structured Data Markup Helper

google structured data markup helper

2. Select the Type of Data

There are several options listed. This list is not exhaustive. For the sample below, I’m going to use “Articles” since it’s one of the most common types of content.

3. Paste the URL You Want to Markup

If you only have HTML, you can paste that instead. Then, click “Start Tagging.”

structured data markup helper

The page will load in the markup tool and provide you with the workspace for the next phase of markup—tagging items. You’ll see your web page in the left pane, and the data items in the right pane.

schema structured data markup

4. Select the Elements to Mark Up

Since this piece of content is an article, I’m going to highlight the name of the article in order to add “Name” markup. When I finish highlighting, I select “Name” from the tooltip.

structured data markup schema for SEO

When I select “Name,” the tool adds it to “Data Items” in the right pane.

structured data markup schema for SEO

5. Continue Adding Markup Items

Use the list of data items as a guide, and highlight the other items in your article to add them to the markup list. You probably won’t be able to tag every item in the list. Just add what you can.

6. Create the HTML

Once you’ve finished, click “Create HTML.”

create html for schema for SEO

In the following page, you will see the HTML of your page with the relevant microdata inserted in the spots that you selected.

google structured data markup helper schema

7. Add Schema Markup to Your Site

Next, you will go into your CMS (or source code if you’re not using a CMS) and add the highlighted snippets in the appropriate spots. Find the yellow markers on the scrollbar to find the schema markup code.

yellow bars that point to the correct markup schema

A simple alternative is to download the automatically-generated HTML file, and copy/paste it into your CMS or source code.

structure data markup download for schema

When you click “Finish,” you will be presented with a series of “Next Steps.”

next step for adding schema to your website

8. Test Your Schema

Use the Structured Data Testing Tool to find out what your page will look like with the added markup.

Instead of analyzing a published web page, I’m going to analyze the code that the tool generated for me, and which I downloaded.

structured data tool for schema

Once the code is pasted, I click “preview.” The testing tool shows me what the article will look like in Google search results:

14 structured data testing tool for schema

In addition, I can inspect every markup element that I added.

schema item type property

If necessary, I can edit the HTML directly in the testing tool in order to update the schema and preview results again.

Tips for Using Schema Markup for SEO

The purpose of this article was to get you started in the world of schema markup. It’s a big world.

The next few tips will show you how to dive even deeper, and gain even richer results from schema.

Find The Most Commonly Used Schemas

Schema.org provides a list of the most common types of schema markup. You can visit the Organization of Schemas page to see this list. Check out the types that are best suited to your business.

organization of schemas

Use All The Schemas You Need

As I mentioned previously, there is a myriad of markup types. To get the full list, visit The Type Hierarchy. This master list provides most of the markup types that are available.

schema.org the type hierarchy

The More Markups, The Better

Schema.org’s instructions explain clearly, “the more content you mark up, the better.” When you start understanding the vast array of item types, you begin to see just how much there is on your web page that you can mark up.

Keep in mind the disclaimer, however: “You should mark up only the content that is visible to people who visit the web page and not content in hidden div’s or other hidden page elements.”

Final Thoughts on Schema Markups

As simple as schema markup is to implement, it’s surprising how few businesses and websites have taken advantage of it.

Schema markup is one of those SEO techniques that will probably be with us for a long time. Now is the time to learn and implement the relevant microdata to improve your search results. Doing so right away will put you ahead of the curve, giving you a leg up on the competition.

How do you use schema markup for your company’s website?

The post How to Boost Your SEO by Using Schema Markup appeared first on Neil Patel.

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