Home Business

You Can Make Money With A Home Based Business - Would you like to earn money by starting your own home-based business? People choose to work from home for several reasons including the desire to stay home with their children, the need for extra income, or simply being dissatisfied with their current job

Thursday, August 31, 2006

The Top 10 Ways to Earn Money at Home

You do not have to read many success stories before you start wishing you could work for yourself. The opportunity to be your own boss and the potential for high income are enough to entice us to venture on our own. But what can you do? What kind of business would you be suitable to start? We have compiled the top 10 ways to earn money at home, enough to be a full-time self-employed businessperson!

1. AntiquesThe buying and selling of antiques has been and should continue to be a very productive business, financially, for those that do it. Here, you only need an extra room in the house, or the use of your garage -- and you have an office! If you have a large home that has some antique furnishings, you might consider turning it into a showroom for your antique acquisitions and sales, providing you satisfy any local zoning regulations. The interest in antiques will survive into the foreseeable future. Many people choose to spend their free time on the weekends "antiquating" from place to place to try and pick up a few odds or ends and maybe a jewel or two. If you know anything about antiques, this may be a great opportunity for you.2. BakingHave you ever been told that you have a recipe that people would line up to get if they could? Ever had anyone tell you that you should be selling those cupcakes you make? There are a number of success stories about people who have launched successful businesses by cooking at home and then marketing to local people first. You may specialize in on just one well-tried and tested food product; or you may innovate on a product that you created yourself and which has never been marketed before. Having perfected the recipe you then turn to packaging and marketing. Word of mouth on a good product may start to get restaurants or bakeries interested in acquiring your culinary masterpieces. Then you progress to selling them statewide and you're on your way to a profitable home-based business.3. Bed-and-Breakfast ProprietorsHave you ever stayed in a bed and breakfast and thought, "Hey, I can do this!" You probably went on vacation and simply chalked your thought up as one of those pipedreams one gets when they stay in a beautiful spot. Don't toss that thought away! While it's not easy work as the hours can be long and it's usually a seven days per week business, it's often something that you can work into a daily schedule. After all, it's merely an extension of doing the housework for family, right? More and more Americans are taking after Europeans and opening their homes to travelers. If you have an extra room or two since the kids moved out, you can start a bed and breakfast in your own place! Bed and breakfast popularity will continue as more and more vacationers and business travelers seek a different accommodation away from the predictability of the average hotel room. If they enjoy their stay, many become "repeat" customers, coming back to the same familiar surroundings time and again. If you don't need to do any major renovations in the house to accommodate this type of establishment, you can be off and running with very little money invested, other than advertising and some new "guest room supplies". If your dream is to buy a bed and breakfast somewhere in a vacation paradise, there are probably houses for sale that will work for this purpose.4. ChildcareDue to the financial pressures faced by many families today, parents work outside of the home to bring in enough income to pay daily living expenses. A single parent is obviously working but all too often, both members of a two-parent family are in the workforce. This creates a home-based opportunity. Children must be watched, all day if they're not in school, or, otherwise, for a brief time after school before the parents finish work for the day. Most parents want their children immersed in a more stimulating environment than is usual with the average babysitter. You can begin small at home, offering a more stimulating and educational environment setting for client children. Caring for one additional child may not be that lucrative, but taking care of several children can certainly be a full-time, financially successful business. Often, taking care of several children is made somewhat easier as the youngsters often will play together. You can do this at home for only a small investment in basic equipment and toys for the kids in addition to the advertising of your business.5. Computer SpecialistThe advent of the computer age has changed the concept of self-employment. Having a computer at home has opened a number of opportunities for running your own business utilizing this equipment. Companies everywhere are "outsourcing" work that can be done by someone else on their computer, out of their own home. If you are a whiz in computers, you may end up working as a consultant, writing programs for companies. If you are a beginner, you may find yourself able to obtain work as a writer, using your computer to produce copy that is easy to edit. You can also keep accounting and payroll records for companies on your computer's database. Word processing software can be used not only for writers but for those that can offer secretarial services out of their house. Desktop publishing software can allow you to do newsletters for businesses and other organizations. If you can operate a computer, you can find work in the information age today. Of course, the advent of the Web has opened a lot of business opportunities for the enterprising individuals. If you have skills in lay-outing and graphic design, you can be a website designer. Website designers earn significant amounts of money nowadays.6. GardeningIf you like working in your garden each year , it's a definite possibility for home-based employment. Imagine clearing a little more space and growing more items that you can sell directly to the consumer. You can produce vegetables, bedding plants, bonzai tree, exotic plants, flower trees, herb, house plants, landscaping plants, orchids and many more. Most produce stands will buy from you if your product is one of high quality. If you enjoy gardening, this could be your ticket! If you have some more land to use, do it! Plant what you can, when you can! Contact your local produce stands to ascertain their buying habits. You can even inquire about your own produce stand if you have enough product. The more space you have on your land, the more likely you will be able to generate enough crops to run the business. People love homegrown vegetables. They just do not have the time or want to be bothered doing it themselves. That is your open door! You can also engage in selling other gardening products and supplies such as compost, earthworms, herb boxes, beneficial bugs, or drip irrigation systems. 7. Importer and DistributorThere are a substantial number of products manufactured in other countries that can be bought inexpensively and sold in your country at a profitable level. The Government and the formation of international trade organizations have made it easier to bring in other products from other countries. This is a business easily operated out of the home, depending on the types of stock you're carrying. You may have to rent some storage space, but the capital required to start should essentially be limited to the products you're buying to sell here. If you know the type of product you want to import and the market most likely to purchase your goods, you have great potential for a successful home-based business.8. Interior DecoratorInterior decorating is a business that will require you to be mobile, constantly meeting with customers. It offers flexible hours, a good variety of activities, and a very lucrative return. If you have a fascination for decorating a home, this could be your line of work. Many people do not know where to start when they are remodeling or buying a house for the first time. If you have the knowledge of colors and patterns and what looks good together, plus the expertise of knowing where to get materials and furnishings, this can be a winning home-based business for you. To be able to decorate a room so that it conveys the mood that the homeowner wishes will be your goal. Strive for the skillful, personal touch in all you design. 9. PhotographerThe sky is the limit here! Armed with your trusty camera and some good advertising, you can do weddings, models, family portraits, passports, student photos, local newspaper coverage; almost anything that requires a picture! You can easily start this work, part-time, and work into full-time work based on your success and inclination. Not much equipment is necessary to get going as a camera off the store shelf can often do the trick today. Picking up a tripod and having a room sufficient for developing your pictures, and you're in business -- at home!10. Sewing and AlterationsMany people love to sew. If you are one of them, consider offering this service out of your home. When someone buys a new outfit, it rarely fits perfectly, meaning some kind of alteration must be done. People look long and hard to find reliable individuals to do their alterations. If you can sew, you are well on your way to opening the doors of this type of business

Making Your Home Business Work!

Running your own home based internet business is a piece of cake. Right
You've probably heard how easy it is to rake in tens of thousands of dollars practically over night, and how you can have all kinds of "free time" and extra cash for traveling and shopping at your favorite store...
Just throw up a web site, add a few affiliate links, post to some forums and presto - you're in the money!
But the reality is this. If you want to succeed in your own home based internet business, whether it's affiliate marketing or selling your own products, you will have to work at making it successful. You have to make it your job to succeed. You must treat it as your job, not as your hobby.
It's great to think that with just a few easy strokes you'll be running on auto-pilot, bringing in loads of cash and then on to the next venture. But without some simple planning and consistent effort you're setting yourself up for failure.
Here are a few tips to help you get started.
STAY ORGANIZED
Set up folders in your email client. You should set up a folder for each contact and keep important correspondence while deleting what you don't need. If you belong to membership sites that require passwords, keep the "welcome" letters where you can find them.
Set up folders on your desktop. If you download a lot of software, ebooks or PDF books from specific individuals simply name a folder on your desktop after the author or site owner. Then when you download something you can place it in their folder.
Make your own HTML home page. For quick and easy access to all your important sites make up an HTML page with hyperlinks to your most frequently used sites along with a brief explanation of each site. Keep it on your desktop for easy access.
STAY FOCUSED
Set aside a specific time for work. It could be from 7pm-9pm every day or whatever time's good for you. During this time do not get distracted from doing only what needs to be accomplished for your business. Try to use the same time slot every day so you get into a routine and get used to the working mindset. Save the surfing for another time.
Set aside a work space. Make sure that all your friends and family know that when you're in your work area you're off limits! No one's to bother you.
Finish one task before starting another. As the old saying goes, "Put one foot in front of the other." Don't start working on something new until the first task is completely finished.
BE CONSISTENT
Work the ideas that "work."
When you find something that works well for you work it hard and get as much out of it as possible. If you're submitting articles to a certain site and they're paying dividends, keep feeding the cycle.
Learn from failure.
Don't get discouraged. Each failure's just a learning process. Use any failure to your advantage by taking the lesson and applying it to your next venture.
Test, test, and more test.
Always test headlines and ad copy. A small change can reap huge rewards.
With these few simple steps you will stay organized, stay focused, be consistent in your efforts and build a solid foundation on which you can build your internet empire!
After all, you are the one who will ultimately determine the success or failure of your business!

3 Strategies For Increasing Profits

It's a simple yet common question, "How can I make my business more successful?"
Success can mean a lot of different things to a lot of different people but when it comes down to it, the success of your business should only be measured by one thing - profit.
At the end of the day, it's not how many people came in to your store or phoned in. It's not even how many widgets you sold. At the end of the day, what truly matters is how much of a profit you made.
It would make sense then that your efforts focus on profit as the end result. With that in mind, there are only three strategies to increase profits for your business.
1) Increase the dollar size of each order 2) Increase the number of times people buy from you 3) Increase the number of people who buy from you
Most likely, your business is already primed to attack each of these three angles and implementing that attack should be fairly easy.
Let's say that you are the owner of Happy Wicks Candle Store. Let your customers know that for every $50 they spend they will receive a free 4-inch candle. When they are eligible for the free candle, offer them the option of upgrading the 4-inch candle to a 6-inch candle for only four dollars.
Implement a customer loyalty program. Whenever a customer spends $200 with your store they receive a 20% discount on their next order. Show loyalty to your customers, too. Create customer-only events and sales, even workshops on how to make candles at home.
Candles are also popular gifts. Be sure to place your contact info on each and every candle. This makes it easy for the gift recipient to purchase from you. Be sure to also use this tactic when co-promoting with similar businesses such as a flower and bath and body shop.
Looking at the example Happy Wicks Candle Store, the tasks of increasing profits was not a difficult one. Truly, it's a matter of putting systems in place that generate increasing profits.
Take a look at your business and examine the systems you have in place. Chances are there's undiscovered profits lying about. Put systems in place to gather those profits and you'll find your business reaching new heights of success.

Work at Home - Stay at Home

Working at home has been a dream of many that goes back many years. Staying at home and enjoying watching the kids grow up is a goal worth fighting for.
Let's take a look into making a living or part time living from the comfort of your home. You owe it to yourself to gain the freedom a home business can offer.
In the past, there have been multi-level marketing plans to sell everything from vitamins to soap. There have been mail order catalog opportunities. Many tried buying and selling real estate. Each of these opportunities made many people a lot of money, but each of them also cost many people a lot of money.
More people have spent money than have made money in every business venture. The problem is many inexperienced people get into moneymaking schemes after attending a meeting somewhere. The offer may be legitimate, but most people fail in business.
According to the US Small Business Administration, over 50% of small businesses fail in the first year and 95% fail with the first five years. That is a scary statistic.
This means that the average business is doomed to fail from the beginning. It also means that you will lose a lot of money if you start a business. WOW! No wonder you are leery about putting up your hard-earned cash for what is statically a crapshoot, a roll of the dice.
So, what is the answer for the average person who does not want to lose their savings and even their home investing in a business? Start building a "digital business" online. Create a website that generates its income without you needing to invest in inventory or even lease a building to house your business. Then create two or ten more websites generating income for you.
You may not know how to create a website today. It is an easily learned skill. There is software you can buy or download free that will help you. There are tutorials on making a website profitable. You can do this.
Once you have a website online you can put other people’s advertising on your site and be paid when someone buys one of their products. If this was my baby toys webpage and I mentioned a great baby toy with a link to my advertiser’s toy page you might go there and buy the toy. If you did, I would get a commission.
You could also put ads on your pages that only require someone to click on the ad for you to be paid. Again, if you were on my baby toy page and an ad talks about a toy. You click on the ad to go see it and I am paid for you clicking on the ad. The advertiser feels their sales page is compelling enough for them to sell enough of that toy to cover their cost of the clicks that got you there.
Some advertisers do not require you to buy the product when you click on an ad, but I will not be paid unless you fill out their application. This is usually seen on sites like insurance sites or loan application sites. You do not have to get a policy or take out a loan for me to be paid. When you fill out the form, I qualify for my commission for sending you to the advertiser.
These are typically the ways a beginning website entrepreneur starts generating income on the Internet. Once you understand that part of internet marketing, you may move on to selling your own digital products.
A digital product is one that can be downloaded from your website. You can sell your own ebook you wrote yourself or an ebook you purchased and have the rights to sell online.
If you are a programmer, you can sell you own computer program from your site. You could also sell someone else's program that you purchased the rights to sell.
Notice that not all of the above ideas require you to invest in a lot of inventory. Even the products are free if you create them yourself. Not everything you are doing so far requires a large investment of your hard earned money. It does require a large investment of your time.
All of the material you need to create a website can be found free online if you do not want to purchase some popular program. Your only expense SHOULD be a domain of your own, such as yourdomain.com. You can get free hosting from various places but for moneymaking venture, this is not advised.
For a small investment, you too can be PRESIDENT OF YOUR OWN COMPANY. Maybe the statistics are the same for success online as they are in other businesses, but this is a chance to find out without losing the farm doing it.

Schedule Your Success

A lot of people dream of owning their own home-based business. They dream of setting their own hours, working when they want to work and with whom. The reality is that very few of these people ever take the time to ensure that they have the right skill set - the right tools - to make the leap to a home-based enterprise.

The first major pitfall that most new home-based business owners face is a lack of scheduling discipline. They just don't plan out their work days. This can cause problems in two ways, under-working and overworking.
Let's look at the first one, "under-working." It's very easy to sit at home, on the ol' PC surfing the web. You might intend on working on your new website or putting up auctions on eBay, but, before you know it, you've spent the entire day reading email and surfing for the latest news and gossip. Sure, you were online and you were doing something, but the things you were doing are not the things that will put a dime in your bank account.
Overworking is pretty easy to understand. Some people simply don't know how to keep business hours. When they work from home, the temptation is there to "work 'til you drop." That's not good, especially if you are building your home-based business on the side and still work a day job. If you spend all your time working, you'll soon feel that you're never getting any "down time," and burnout is sure to follow. Believe me, I know all about this one.
Here's the solution. You must be very disciplined in planning your day. Write down what you need to accomplish every day and how long you will work on each item. Be sure to include downtime in your plan - time for your family, relaxation, exercise, whatever. This is important. after all, you're building a home-based business to build a lifestyle, not to become the richest person in the cemetery!
Your daily plans and goals need to be very specific. It won't do you any good to write something like, "work on project x." What does that mean? How exactly do you "work on something?" Your plan needs to include a definite finishing point, such as "write a new article on dog grooming for page one of the website." See the difference? You can "work on" a project for years and never reach a point where you've had any success. By contrast, when you "write an article on x," you know you're done as soon as you've typed the final period.
If you're in a marketing business, try to farm out as much of the non-marketing related work as you can afford to do. For example, if you sell products or services, it might be beneficial for you to hire someone to help build and maintain your website. The money you'll spend to have someone else do it will be more than offset by the amount of time it will free up. Other areas you can outsource might be bookkeeping, mailing, etc.
Be realistic when planning your day. If you're still working your day job, schedule that from the time you get up in the morning until you get home from work. Don't forget to include commute time. Then, plan out your evening accordingly. Don't schedule a four hour task to be completed in one hour. It won't happen. If you have huge tasks, break them up as much as possible and schedule your time accurately. This will allow you to have a feeling of accomplishment and you'll get a lot more done in the long run.
Don't multi-task. I know that this is the latest "buzzword," but, in reality, multi-taking is one of the leading killers of productivity for most people. Schedule only one project at a time. You can work on more than one project during the day, but you shouldn't work on more than one project at a time. It's very difficult, if not totally impossible, to serve to masters at the same time. Give one project your undivided attention. Once you've completed that task, move on to another tasks on that project or to another project.
You should also be a little flexible in your scheduling. In any business, there are bound to be interruption s that you couldn't possibly have planned for. In home-based businesses, the chance of distraction goes up exponentially. You'll be working on that hot new project, only to have the toilet overflow or a neighbor ring the doorbell. Plan on it. There will be things that happen that you can't plan for. That's why your schedule needs to include a little cushion.
What I like to do is plan out the items I want to get done and overestimate the time it will take to do them, by say 10%. Then, I have other items which are "on deck." These items aren't quite on today's schedule, but I want to do them soon. If I complete all of my scheduled tasks for the day, I simply look to see what's on deck and start on one of them. It's a bonus.
Sometimes, no matter how well you plan, you just won't finish what you schedule. It happens to everyone. That's when you simply revise your schedule for the next day to include the missed item(s). Don't get hung up on the fact that an item or two didn't get done as planned. Just take it in stride and keep on moving forward. Now, if you find yourself routinely missing your deadlines, you'll need to reevaluate your scheduling. Are you being realistic in your time allotments? Probably not. Adjust accordingly.
Here are just a few tips to help you maintain sanity and get your work done. With a little planning and a little effort, you can balance your home life with your home-based business and literally schedule your way to success.

Can You Handle the Stress of an Online Business?

Are you looking to the Internet as a possible avenue of creating income and relieving you of your present burdens? You are not alone; many individuals see the potential for building their own business from wherever they are on this globe by means of the Internet. The Internet provides a level playing field and appeals to men and women of all ages as a prospective means of conducting business from the comfort of home.
However, despite the fact that running a business through the Internet can often be less expensive than a traditional business AND allows you access to a worldwide market at any time of the day, the truth behind starting a business online is that it can be as stressful as any other business. How can you prepare yourself for this obstacle?
PUT ON YOUR 'GAME FACE'
Yes, it IS a tough game to start a business. You are guaranteed to experience times when your self-confidence is shaken, you feel the task is beyond your abilities and you beat yourself up for making mistakes.
Know this - and move on. It is part of creating business and you will have to face these issues whether it's your first attempt or if you've been in business for years. Changes happen fast on the Internet and that includes changes to businesses. One day you will be amazing yourself and the next day you'll think you've been beat.
The best solution to this is to EXPECT it and plan to move on despite those feelings.
DON'T BELIEVE THE HYPE
Are you bringing a small business to the Internet in order to expand your market? Good for you. Nearly every business can benefit from online exposure. Or are you inspired by the many programs that claim "instant wealth - easy to learn!"? Don't believe it. Regardless of if you've been in business for a long time or this is your first attempt - business done through the Internet has it's own methods and you'd better be ready to learn them if you want to make money.
The Internet is fast - people expect instant gratification when doing business online and can be incredibly fickle when all they need to do is click a button to check out the competition. If you are basing your Internet business on a traditional model that depends on walk-in traffic and personal referrals you will have to adapt your methods to an online business. If this is your first online business you will need to learn the nuances of obtaining customers and keeping them.
The learning curve can be steep and some individuals find it daunting. The good thing to remember is that it is possible for nearly anyone to operate a business online no matter what their previous experience - just be prepared to learn and have patience with your attempts.
DON'T BLOW ALL YOUR MONEY
It is easy to forget the need for a budget when you can spend money so easily online. Don't buy into every business opportunity or training program. Visit online forums to acquire a feel for the best systems available. Make friends on these forums that will support you when you are overwhelmed or needing advice.
The only thing worse than finding out you made a mistake is finding out that it cost you money. Remember that every experience is a learning experience. Try to stick to a budget but don't permit yourself to dwell on mistakes when they happen - learn and move on.
Taking steps to prepare yourself for the stress and rejection that all new business owners face will enable you to build on that knowledge and create a successful business. Thankfully for you there are many who won't make it that far which leaves the field wide open!

Home Based Business Opportunities

It seems home based business opportunities are a bit more common in the US than in Europe. However the European marketplace is quickly catching on to the phenomenon of home based business and network marketing. The advantages of a home based business are evident: low cost, flexible working hours and tax benefits, to name but a few. But these advantages have pretty much been there for many years, so why the sudden growth? Why do so many people start their own home based business right now, and why would network marketing be a good thing to consider for so many others?
First of all there is worldwide economic uncertainty and many economies are either facing a recession or are in the middle of one. Turn open any newspaper and you can't miss articles on companies downsizing and laying off employees by the thousands. Network marketing offers people the chance to create a part time auxiliary income, right beside their day job. This kind of extra income has proven a great help to many families across the world. Of course many network marketers have made a full time living out of there business. Some of them have made fortunes. But this level of success, although available to anyone who is willing to do the work, will not be for most people. Most network marketers run a part time business for a small number of hours a week earning them a couple hundred bucks a month.
Then there is the phenomenon of cocooning, where the consumer tries to shield itself from all sorts of marketing messages. Do-no-call lists are in place, making it harder and harder for companies to get their messages across to the consumer. Network marketing, which is based on moving a service or product to the end consumer based on personal relationships, delivers a strong answer to these challenges. More and more traditional companies have discovered that network marketing is a very cost effective way to reach consumers.
Of course we can't forget about the internet. This technology has greatly helped making the world smaller, making it easier to find and disperse information. Network marketing companies have pioneered the internet to inform, train and motivate their independent distributors.
The cost of home office equipment has decreased considerably. These days you can set up a home office for just a couple hundred bucks. Some may argue that you don't even need that much. Any computer with an internet connection and a phone would be enough for most network marketers to operate their business. This makes it affordable for everyone to start a home based business. Compare this to the cost of running a normal business and it becomes clear why more and more people are being attracted to a home based opportunity.
And then there is the growing lack of trust in the corporate world. Not too long ago, people where quite used to having a job for life. Or at least until they decided to quit. Nowadays many people have come to realize that job security is a joke. Too many people have lost their jobs more than once only to find out that they were nothing but a number to their corporate employer. It's not just the fact that you have to go out to find another job to feed your family. It's also the fact that you've been listening to your employer bloating about the importance of their human assets when in the end in turns the employees where just considered human asses.
Network marketing not only offers people a chance to create some extra income, it also provides them with the opportunity to get some of their dignity back. Helping them realize that they don't necessarily have to depend on their employers paycheck. The support structures that many good network marketing companies offer are a great help to individuals joining this type of business. Not only will they receive the proper training on their company's products and services. They will also be educated on personal development
The advantages of a home based business are evident and in the near future we will certainly see more of it. Looking at today's trends in the economy it doesn't take a genius to figure out that the era of monolithic companies offering jobs for life has ended. It's time to have the courage to bet on yourself again and home based business is a good way to do so. And for those people that decide to take this step, taking a serious look at network marketing is just common sense. Even in a time where common sense isn't that common anymore.

Is Technology Giving You More Freedom From Your Job?

When cellphones became available it seemed that they would fill a need for instant communication - any time, any place - that would help people be more efficient and thus save time.
Then email became a mainstream method of business communication. Marvelous - now telephones wouldn't ring off the hook, messages would not have to be stored and retrieved as verbal communications, which took time. Instead, information would be clear and concise and could be retrieved and answered any time, any where - again the promise of more freedom.
With email, internet and cellphones, was it really necessary for workers to be restrained to the office? Maybe shorter work days would ensue. Perhaps parents could collect their children from school and be contacted at home via either of these methods.
The work world was changing.
This truth came about as more workers were able to take their jobs with them. The travel from home to work and back again was no longer a barrier for actually DOING the work.
Telecommunication was making itself an integral part of conducting business. With cellphones and email, distance, time and travel were no longer barriers to conducting business effectively.
For some, this meant that coming to the office every day was an option - not a requirement.
Mothers and fathers found new freedom to take care of their children while still collecting the paycheck they needed to support them. Work could be done at home, at the park, at the grocery store, at night...
Unfortunately, this ability to work anywhere has become a nuisance instead of a luxury for some individuals. The fact that they are ABLE to do business any time, any where, means that they actually ARE doing business all the time.
Rather than free them, they found that they cannot get far enough away from work to really put it away for the day. Illness and emergencies do not stop the phone from ringing or the email from piling up - and because you can access it, there is no excuse for not dealing with it.
So for some, the convenience has become a ball and chain - creating longer work hours and constant stress. For these individuals it is necessary to commit themselves and their work mates to guidelines such as turning the phone off. Not accessing email regularly. Sticking to these rules and telling other work mates your new practices should help.
Remember that you were supposed to be ASSISTED by these devices. It is in the best interest of your health and the well-being of your family if these tools keep their proper place.

How to List Your Business in Google and Yahoo Local Search

Even if your business is done completely online, you may benefit from getting listed in Google Local or Yahoo's local listings. People often feel more comfortable doing business with someone who is local; and potential customers may stumble across your business while searching for other things. Submission to Local Search at both Google and Yahoo are free, and may bring you more business than you expect.
Here are the URLs for the signup forms below, but before you get started you should have the following information ready at hand:
1. The first thing they will ask for is the physical location of your business. If your business is in your home, that is no problem, just use your home address. You shouldn't, however, use a post office box, as Google doesn't accept them.
2. The telephone number(s) of your business - If you use your home phone number for your business, be sure you have an appropriate answering machine message, and that your phone is answered in a professional manner.
It is best to get a separate telephone number for your business, even if it and your budget are very small. Check with your phone company and the VOIP companies, you may be pleasantly surprised at how cheaply you can get a second number. Many people use VOIP for their business, and pay just $25 per month for unlimited local and long distance through their broadband internet connection. If you have a fax number, have that ready also.
3. A business email address - Use an email account at your business domain. If you don't have a website for your business, buy a domain for your site from a registrar such as registerfly.com who gives website space with a domain purchase, or at least put up a "one page business card" website on the free space Yahoo offers to local listers. In any event, don't use an America Online address or a "freebie" email service such as Hotmail or Yahoo for your business. This is considered very unprofessional.
4. Your business website address - Get a site if you honestly mean to have an internet business. Yes, a website is not strictly required in order to earn online, but to anyone with online business experience you will appear as a rank amateur without one.
5. A description of the services or products you sell. This should be a short 1 to 3 sentence summary such as:
"Your Business Name provides widgets to all widget users, with special emphasis on blue widgets for widgeteers. We also offer widget payment plans."
Don't make it a blatant advertisement, just an explanation of services.
6. Categories your business falls under - You'll be able to choose up to 5 categories for your listing.
7. What types of payment can you accept? (Cash, credit card types, etcetera)
8. Your business operating hours and days at your location.
9. Contact Name - likely yours.
Google users will need to setup an Account. Fear not...if you have Gmail, Google Sitemaps or any other Google service requiring an email address you are already registered.
When you have your information ready, go to http://www.google.com/local/add/businessCenter.
Sign into your Google account and follow the onscreen instructions. Once you have finished, Google will telephone or send you a postcard (your choice) with a confirmation number. When you receive the pin number in the mail or by phone, you will then need to go back to your account and enter that pin number before your entry can be activated.
After that, just wait for the phone calls from new customers.
For Yahoo, the information needed is nearly the same, and they will give you a free 5-page website for your business to boot!
Sign up at Yahoo here: http://listings.local.yahoo.com/
Get going and boost your business into areas you might not have thought of trying.

Why Should You Have a Business Plan?

Are you planning to start a new business? Or are you considering expanding your current business and require a bank loan or investment from outsiders?

If you are going to look for an investment of capital it is quite likely that you will be required to have a business plan. If you are starting a business, despite the work involved, a business plan can prepare you for the obstacles ahead and help ensure your success.
A business plan is something that many small businesses fail to create, however, many business owners are adamant that having a written business plan is one of the keys to their present success. Creating a business plan forces you to contemplate possible obstacles to your business and prepares you to find solutions that will help you to overcome them.
To find investors or get a bank loan, they will want to see that you have the experience or resources to run the business. They will want to see your projected income as well as your suggested repayment plan already laid out. Taking the time to do this is not only important for them, but it gives you a measuring tool to verify if your business is growing properly. You can gage your success on how close to the plan your business has actually performed. Perhaps you'll do worse, or perhaps you'll do better, either way it helps you determine how well your business is getting on.
If you have never seen a business plan before you may be concerned that is is too difficult a proposition for you to manage on your own.
While there are services available where you can hire someone to write a business plan for you, depending on your needs it may be wise to familiarize yourself with a business plan's layout. This will not only help you to provide the necessary information, but may encourage you to try your own hand at it.
There's a free tool at www.bdc.ca which will assist you in creating a business plan. Some of the topics you will be required to explain are your Market, Customer, Competition, Marketing Plan, Research & Development along with financial forecasts. You may consider hiring someone to help you with your financial sheets after completing the written part of the Business Plan.
Your Business Plan will become your guide and silent business partner - indicating where you need to improve and helping you stay one step ahead of your competition. Make it a priority to have this crucial road map for your business.

7 Tips for Starting Your Home Based Business

So, you've decided to start a home based business. Congratulations! and welcome to the fast-paced world of entrepreneurship. While there is a lot to learn, your effort will be worth it. The thrill of growing your business, the freedom and flexibility to set your own hours, and the possibilities of ever-increasing financial rewards are all wonderful reasons to start your home based business.
Now that you've decided to start your business, you might be wondering "How can I get it off to the strongest possible start?" These seven tips will help:
1) Set up a separate working space in your home. It doesn't matter if this is a small bedroom, one part of the garage, or a corner of the living room. The important thing is to have some space that you can designate as your working area. This will give you the space and room you need to craft your dream.
2) Stock your working space with materials. This sounds basic, perhaps, but one underlying element of success is that you have easy access to the tools, materials, and other resources you need. Gathering everything close by also keeps you from wasting time searching for it, so this step can be considered a time management strategy, too.
3) Speaking of time management, your third step is to define the parameters of your business. What days and hours will you work? When will you market? When will you provide services or products to clients? How will you keep all of this straight?
4) Balance action with planning. One of the most common pitfalls to successful entrepreneurship is getting too caught up in action without enough planning. Stated another way, this means that you confuse "being busy" with "working on important projects." The best approach is to plan your next couple of goals and then work backwards to create step by step action plans to reach them. Once you have the plan, then it's time to take the action.
5) Network like crazy. One of the fastest ways to grow any business is to make connections with other people. Be sure to share your passion and enthusiasm with others at every opportunity. Let people know who you are and what you offer. Remember, people can't buy if they don't know you're selling.
6) Present a professional image. If you want to be treated professionally, present a professional image. Set up a separate bank account for your business. Install a separate phone and fax line. Create professional marketing materials. Be courteous and pleasant in all your customer facing interactions. Basically, be someone people want to do business with.
7) Automate your business as much as possible. Granted, you are just one person (right now) and might have a lot of extra time to take care of all the details. This might work for now, but won't work into the future as you get busier and busier. It's best to set up automatic systems and processes right from the start to free up your time to concentrate on the most profitable activities.
These seven tips will get your home business started (and growing) in the right direction.

Faster Home Business Profits

Way too many people believe the Internet is a place to get rich quick with no effort or sweat needed. You just publish a web site and poof you have a home business. Please do not hold your breath waiting on results from an Internet business started with that thought process. Home business owners turning blue or choking are signs that they did not read this article.
The good news is starting an online home business is worth every second it takes to do it right. Imagine being your own boss for incentive, then use your brain and motivation to make it work. The lack of time will always be a factor in creating your business, given the fact we all have jobs, kids, family or some other distraction. To add more time to your business day use the proven techniques and strategies not shortcuts!
Imagine being able to sit down at your computer and find your home business already built in a box just waiting for you. By using content sites and article sites, you can easily find ready to go ebooks, software, products and even complete web sites, ready to build a business with. They just do not include the marketing any business requires.
Take a tour of sites like Infogoround, Surefire Wealth, and SiteSell. You will find ideas and solutions for any home business. None will be successful overnight. Success takes considerable effort and motivation and it all starts with you and a great idea.
And do not overlook your greatest asset which is the skill and knowledge you already have. Business online takes passion and chances are passion on the job got you many years of experience that you can easily share for profit. The book "Make Your Knowledge Sell" can be found on any search engine. Get a copy of it and see just how much money your knowledge can make.
Many topics and themes great for home business and affiliate sales have already been built. Take advantage of that by joining sites that sell content and ideas you can modify to suit your specific purpose. These days you can start a home based business in just minutes to hours, but above all things, have a marketing plan before you start. Then use content sites, article sites, and proven marketing tactics to get the job done.
In all cases however, the lack of an action plan is the fastest way to a home business failure. "Look before you leap" is a well known phrase and the answer for faster home business profits.

You Can Make Money With A Home Based Business

Would you like to earn money by starting your own home-based business? People choose to work from home for several reasons including the desire to stay home with their children, the need for extra income, or simply being dissatisfied with their current job. A home-based business will provide you with an exciting way to earn money and be your own boss. Numerous opportunities are available to internet marketers.
When starting your home-based business you should develop a business plan and research your options thoroughly. Making wise decisions and following your business plan each step of the way can help you in creating a steady stream of income. Operating a home-based business will require hard work and effort. You will not become wealthy over night. It will take determination to succeed as an internet marketer. The amount of money you make will be directly related to the amount of work you are willing to do.
When making your business plan, include both short and long term goals. Determine how you will achieve those goals and put your plan into action. Affiliate programs are excellent home-based business programs and there are numerous other internet marketing offers that will create steady income if you are willing to make the effort. Some of these opportunities may require an initial investment from you and others are advertised as free. Research all internet marketing opportunities carefully to make sure you understand the terms and conditions.
As an internet marketer, you will have to distinguish yourself from the competition if you want to succeed. You should know your target audience and know your competition even better. Do not let self-doubt stop you from accomplishing your goals. Every successful internet marketer gives their business the very best effort possible. Hard work and determination will make your home-based business a success and provide you with a steady stream of income.
Starting a home-based business is one of the most exciting and challenging endeavors you will ever undertake. A sound business plan and the will to succeed will set you apart from the competition. Choose the products or services you provide carefully. Make certain your services will be needed over the long term and make customer service your top priority. A loyal customer base is the key to the success or failure of your home-based business. A home-based business is an excellent way to gain independence and financial freedom. A sound business plan and a strong work ethic are all it takes to succeed.

The Benefits Of A Home Based Business

Taking advantage of a home-based business opportunity can afford you many benefits. There are not only the monetary benefits, but lifestyle benefits as well. Whether lifestyle or monetary, these benefits can be far greater than the benefits you receive working for an employer. If you are already working in your own home-based business or just entertaining the idea, be sure to evaluate your options and consider the value of the benefits you will receive. Home-based business opportunities can provide you with independence and financial freedom if you make smart decisions.
It is not always money that motivates people to start a home-based business. Sometimes the intangible benefits are more important factors when considering home-based business opportunities. One of the more powerful draws to working from home is the sense of freedom you gain. You can set your own schedule, work the hours that are most convenient for you, and have time available for family obligations and leisure activities. Parents with children in school often think about what home-based business opportunities may be available to them. Teacher conferences, after school activities and the ability to be home when the children are out of school are strong motivators in making the decision to start a home-based business. Working from home gives you the benefit of flexible hours and the freedom to adjust your schedule according to the needs of your family.
Stress reduction is another benefit of operating a home-based business. Any business will likely produce its own kind of stress, but certain stressful factors can be avoided when you take advantage of the more promising home business opportunities that are available to you. You will have no daily commute, you will save money on gas and automobile expenses, and you will have the extra time in the morning and evening to relax and interact with your family instead of spending that time getting to and from work. If you plan properly and budget your time wisely, being your own boss can reduce the stress you feel due to constant demands and co-worker interruptions.
A home-based business opportunity cannot only give you the benefit of earning money while working from your home it can give you many other benefits as well. A home-based business is the perfect chance for you to attain financial and personal freedom. There are numerous home-based business opportunities available to you. Research each one carefully and make sure you are willing to put forth the effort that will be required in order to succeed.