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The Small Biz Success Express

Who the Bleep Is Running Your Business Anyway?

By Ursula Jorch

OK, that was a little harsh. But really, it’s a valid and oh so important question.

As entrepreneurs, we can so easily get derailed. The temptations are many, and they center around one thing.

You are not connected with yourself.

When that’s the case, it’s easier to look outside of yourself for answers.

Without that connection, you can open yourself up to a lot of aimless wandering. Enter the gremlins.

Gremlin #1. I can tell you what to do.

Oh crap, this one I have both experienced and observed. And it’s not pretty.

The well-meaning tool-wielder who wants to tell you who you are and from that profile, what to do in your business. Or the tough-love drill sergeant, barking orders that, ‘This is the way!’ Even the coach who hides that they have no idea how to help you to discover your own way, and instead pushes you in the direction that is familiar to them, even if it’s wrong for you.

In retrospect, these all seem clear, but at the time, I was drawn in too. This gremlin seems to offer the way out of terrifying uncertainty. It’s so understandable. And so damaging. At the very least, you’ll be delayed from finding your true way with these detours.

Gremlin #1 Protector: If you hear the words, “I can tell you who you are/what to do,” your inner radar will begin sending out alerts. Listen to those signals, and step away if you’re being led away from what feels right for you.

Gremlin #2. Follow your fears.

Your own subconscious can lead you astray. It’s so uncomfortable to be uncomfortable! Uncertainty will do that. Until you accept that discomfort is part of being an entrepreneur, a necessity for growth, it’s only natural to want to avoid it. So you can become ruled by your fears.

Feeling nervous about practicing an elevator pitch? The fear gremlin at work: Avoid it, because surely, at some unknown point in the future, you’ll feel better about trying it.

Reluctant to invest in your learning? The fear gremlin advises: keep going with what you know, because that seems easier. Besides, you’re working so hard anyway.

Halfheartedly exploring ways to reach out to your audience? The fear gremlin says, dipping in your toe to see if the water’s inviting is really the more prudent way, isn’t it? And far more comfortable than plunging in wholeheartedly to learn as much as you can, and learning to deal with rejection instead.

Being ruled by your fears in your business stunts your growth, both personally and professionally. You’ll never be fulfilled and discover the full scope of what you can do by letting this gremlin run things.

Gremlin #2 Protector: Your inner radar, your truth, will help you identify when you’re running your business by the fear gremlin when a decision feels constricting instead of liberating.

Gremlin #3. Do things by the book.

By now, you’re probably clear that following anyone’s guidance to the letter is a bad recipe for business success. That includes guidance in well-respected publications and from people who’ve been enormously successful.

One of the beautiful aspects of having your own business is that you get to be creative and express yourself. The way that you stand out from the crowd is to put your unique stamp on the familiar. You can even innovate something entirely new at times.

Advice from those who’ve been there is helpful, yes. Learn from it, and apply it in your own way, rather than robotically following it. Be a student, not an acolyte.

Gremlin #3 Protector: Processes and consistency are a good thing. Structure is a good thing. But…when you include them in your business, make a conscious choice about whether they are right for you and your business. Don’t just follow a prescription.

In your business, you can make a real difference in the world. In the lives of the people within your business: your team, your clients, your suppliers.

You can make a difference in the big wide world too. You can only do that if you are successful, if you can keep going and sustain your business in a healthy way.

To do that, you’ll have to be clear about who you are and have faith in yourself.

I’m not saying you arrive at the entrance door to entrepreneurship with complete self-knowledge and confidence. I mean really, who has that? Like all of us, I’m still working on that one!

Even with that compassionate knowledge in mind, you’ve got to be willing and open to learning about who you are, and develop trust in that truth. That is what the best mentors will nurture in you.

Your inner radar, that unique inner voice of truth and clarity, is available to you. Clearing the way to hearing it is your best path to creating the business that you are meant to have.

It is your uniqueness, your rare and irreplaceable voice, that will guide you to creating a business that stands out and thrives.

So who the bleep is running your business anyway? For sustainable success and true fulfillment, it’s the unique and beautiful youFree Web Content, all the way.

Article Source: http://www.articlesfactory.com/articles/business/who-the-bleep-is-running-your-business-anyway.html

Why Hire a Web Designer and Not Use a Website Builder

By Jack Waterfield

Website designer or a website builder? Whom do you choose to build your website? Both promise you outstanding results, both offer you customization, and both will probably give you what they promise. Then what are the criteria to choose which is better? Here is a point-by-point revelation of why it is better to hire a web designer.

1. Customized from scratch, not from a template

Web designers build websites from scratch. They do not use a ready-made template and make changes in it. That is very important if you want a highly customized website. You would want your website’s design to mirror your company’s brand image.A website designed from scratch can be customized in ways that a website created from a template cannot. The only reason being that a template already has a set structure(panels,placement, columns, interactive media, banners, ads, text boxes), that can only be changed so much.

2. Search engine optimized

Qualified web designers are trained in search engine optimization (SEO) and integrate it in a website’s design. SEO is super important to make your website visible to the people. Even if you have a brilliantly designed website and nobody sees it, that defeats the entire purpose of having it. Web designers make your website optimized by creating SEO friendly URLs for each website page, including meta tags and meta descriptions, optimizing images, using keywords, etc.That helps to gain a higher ranking on search engines and getting more visitors.

3. Continued support, not one time service

A web designer monitors the results you are getting in terms of traffic, bounce rate, active users, audience analysis and so on. Services such as Google Analytics help web designers to monitor results. Based on results, they make changes in the website and check the results again. This process substantially increases the chances of a website’s success. On the other hand, you have website builders that only provide services in website designing. After that, you are on your own to discover if your design works or not.

4. Fixed one-time cost

Web designers usually charge a one-time fixed fee for designing the website. You pay a fixed amount and get a customized website made. With website builders, you usually pay a fixed amount every month, like forever. If you calculate the total cost of creating and running your website on a website builder, it will most definitely be way more than a one-time fee from a web designer. On top of that, website builders may revise their prices anytime.

Even if you get your website designer to monitor results and make necessary changes, you are in control of the pricing.You can anytime choose to hire another designer. In other words, you are not stuck with one service provider.

5. Time taken to build a website

As web designers build a website from scratch, they take more time to build your website. But that time is devoted to give you quality and customization. They work on your specifications to create a design that is newly built inside out. What website builders do is to provide you with a basic structure (template) that you can tweak. That really doesn’t take time and you are the one making the changes, not them. So, it is faster, no doubt. But you must also keep the results in mind to really understand if faster is all you want.

6. Who does the work?

When you hire a web designer, it is the designer’s responsibility to integrate all the features you want and test them. You give instructions on what exactly you want in broad layman terms and you get the results you want. That’s easy. The problem with a website builder is that they only offer you tools. They will provide you with 10 tools and give you instructions on how to get them to work. That’s the opposite of how you work with a web designer. Easy as it may seem to integrate features in your website, it needs at least some knowledge of what those features do and how to get them to work on your website.

7. Fully featured

Most of the website builders offer features such as responsiveness, website hosting, SEO, security, 24/7 support and so on.These are great features to have, but can you get more customized features at lesser cost from a web designer? A qualified web designer is fully capable of adding any feature you need or they think necessary for your website. So, consider the overall cost based on what features you are getting.

8. Communication

With a web designer, you are the employer. With a website builder, you are their customer. Communicating with your web designer is from one person to another whereas communicating with your website builder is from one person to a company. That makes a difference when you need to communicate regularly. So, even if a website builder is offering 24/7 support, consider the quality of that support and how comfortable it will be for you to get help.

Points to ponder

Before deciding whether to hire a web designer or use a website builder, think about these questions:

a). What will be the total cost of designing?
b). How much customization do I need?
c). What are the SEO services being offered?
d). What do I do if I need continued support?
e). How much time can I invest in building the website?
f). Do I have basic knowledge of necessary features of a website?
h). How much communication can I have with my website builder?

If you only want to try out a personal website and not care about getting visitors, you can use a free Starter Plan provided by website builders. But if you are investing in a professional business website, consider the points above to make a decision that you’ll be happy within the future.

Article Source: http://www.articlebiz.com/article/1051640279-1-why-hire-a-web-designer-and-not-use-a-website-builder/

Is a Home Business the Right Decision?

By Heena

Starting a home business is a big deal, and it can be a bit risky. It's not right for everyone or for every situation. You should think carefully before plunging into any home business. But once you get started, you should work at it wholeheartedly. One of the first considerations is how a home business will impact what you are doing already. Maybe you're looking to supplement your income from your regular job. Maybe you're hoping to earn something as a stay at home mother. In any case, running a home business will have a tremendous impact on your day to day life. Even the smallest business will take a lot out of your free time.

This means that you will need to discuss your plans with your family. Anyone who will be directly impacted needs to understand why you want to do this. They may be supportive, they may not be. But they need to know so that they know what to expect from all of this. Your working hours, type of business and setup will matter to everyone in your household.

You may also have to answer questions about whether or not the opportunity you want to pursue is a scam. Of course, if you're doing something entirely on your own, you can be sure it's not a scam, but if you're joining any sort of company at all you will probably have to explain why you believe you can make it work. This means you should do your research on whatever it is you intend to do. Be clear on how you will be earning money. If the opportunity is multi-level, you want to be certain that you do not just expect to earn from recruiting. Those kinds of opportunities can sound really good, but are more prone to being scams. Make sure you can follow how your income will be generated.

The kind of home business matters too. You hear a lot about following your passion, and there is a reason for that. Doing something you love makes it far easier to get through the hard times when you aren't earning what you hoped. Most home businesses will go through times like that, as overnight successes are rare. But passion isn't the only thing. You want to understand how you will sell to people with the same interests. If there isn't a market, look at one of your other passions. Surely you have more than one thing you truly enjoy doing and would enjoy in business. But there are times when a home business is not the right choice to make. One of the key indicators is your own attitude towards it. If you aren't going to take it seriously and work hard at it, a business is probably not the right choice.

If you can't take the financial risk, a home business is probably not the right choice. If you don't know when or how you are going to find time to work your business, it is probably not the right choice. The decision to start a home business is a highly personal one. You may not always get the familial support you want for your decision, but it is still possible to do well if you are determined. You need to find the right balance that suits youBusiness Management Articles, your family and the needs of your business.

Article Source: http://www.articlesfactory.com/articles/home-business/is-a-home-business-the-right-decision.html

Using LinkedIn Is A Smart Way To Get New Clients

By Gunjan SIngh

If you are not using LinkedIn for the marketing of your company, then you are missing out a huge potential audience. It is the third most popular site that not only helps you to get business but also helps to build a strong brand presence. It is the best platform where you can connect with new people-that are from same business niche, this will help you to pitch more potential clients.

Here are some ultimate benefits of using LinkedIn in your marketing campaign.

These are some of the best benefits of using LinkedIn for your business. Many companies hire professional digital marketing companies that help them to build their strong online presence. It helps them to get more enquiries from various customers that can be beneficial for them. If you are not able to handle your social media accounts thenArticle Search, you can hire a good SEO company to get more business.

Article Source: http://www.articlesfactory.com/articles/internet/using-linkedin-is-a-smart-way-to-get-new-clients.html

How Big Does My Business Impact Have To Be?

By Ursula Jorch

As an entrepreneur, you don’t need an empire to have impact. The impact that you have in your business and beyond may already be bigger than you imagine.

Here’s some great news: businesses that consciously focus on impact, on making a positive difference, have 12-14 times more income than businesses that just focus on profit.

Impact is not a nice-to-have. It’s not an add-on. It’s an integral part of your business vision and strategy.

You may be thinking, I’ll focus on my impact once I make more money. I can’t have impact without more income.

The truth is, you don’t have to wait for some future “ideal” condition to have impact.

Your plans for impact can be built right into your business from the start. When you do that, not only your impact increases. Your income increases as well.

Focusing on impact has other benefits too:

One of the questions I’m most often asked about this focus on impact is, does my impact have to be big?

The short answer is, no. If you only impact one person, positively affect one person’s life, that too is impact.

The longer answer is, maybe your impact is already bigger than you imagine.

You don’t have to have an empire to have impact, to make a positive difference. You affect everyone you meet, whether you notice it or not.

We are the sum of our relationships, with ourselves and with others. The African word, “Ubuntu,” means, “I am because you are.” Ubuntu captures the essence of our interconnectedness.

I once held a meeting in an African hut with that word, Ubuntu, boldly painted on the outside of it. As we met, a troop of baboons ran by, looking at us as they rushed past. Just as the novelty and delight of that settled into me, a sounder (herd) of warthogs followed in their wake. I’m not sure if they were headed to the same meeting.

The village that this African hut stood in was often visited by Nelson Mandela after his release from 27 years in prison. I’m told that Mandela would wander through the village in the mornings and greet everyone he met. He showed real presence and caring in his interactions, never rushing, reaching out to each person individually.

It was Mandela’s caring that is remembered most by the people in the village during his visits. This man, who as South Africa’s President and through his activism, brought about the end of the heinous practice of apartheid in South Africa, also affected people in his personal interactions.

His presence was honored by the creation of black pillars installed throughout the village that still stand. On each one is written a word. Freedom. Courage. Trust. Resilience. Unity. Vision. Each word speaks to presence and to impact.

Mandela understood that each person is important, that our connections with each other are what matter.

That is what I mean when I say that your impact doesn’t have to include a vision about influencing the larger world, but I would bet that your impact is already big.

It’s estimated that we are able to maintain stable social relationships with about 150 people at a time, and that each of us knows between 472 and 750 people. That assumes that you’re not making a major effort, that you’ve stayed pretty much in the same place for most of your life, and you don’t include social media.

If you do actively and consistently make new connections, you travel or have moved, and your social media contacts actually become friends, your network of connection is significantly bigger. One fun fact estimate is that you know 355 more people than you have Facebook friends. All of that adds up to the likelihood that you will meet upwards of 10,000 people in your lifetime.

Given all the people you connect with over a lifetime in some fashion, even with the lowest estimate, you personally affect a lot of people. You have the potential to make that impact positive.

So consider how you show up every day, within your business and outside of it. Making an adjustment in how you show up every day has repercussions down the road. It affects the impact that you have.

Let your impact be whatever moves you, whatever you see as your positive contribution in your business and in the world. And that vision may grow as you recognize your impact.

Article Source: http://www.articlesfactory.com/articles/business/how-big-does-my-business-impact-have-to-be.html

How to Select a Domain Name

By Trudy Pellicaan

Selecting a memorable domain name is not just a task for online companies. Every brick-and-mortar business needs to maintain an online presence in order to compete for today’s buyers. Why you ask? Consumers are increasingly turning to the internet as their primary resource for shopping or locating businesses. In Australia the number of internet subscribers grows almost 15% per year. Mid 2011 subscriptions reached 11 million, and that doesn’t even include those who access the web via mobile phones. No business can compete successfully long-term if such trends are ignored.

Create an SEO Friendly Domain Name

The ultimate goal of creating a website is to increase your businesses visibility to prospective customers. Your first step to building a strong online marketing campaign is to select a competitive domain name. You can do so by using SEO friendly keywords in your domain name that illustrate your products and services. By doing so you are assisting both your target market and search engines when identifying your niche. In saying this, if your business already has an established reputation and following, it may be more advantageous to simply use a version of your company’s name.

Things to Remember When Choosing a Domain Name

Every domain name is required to be unique, though there may be several similar versions using different top level domains (TLDs). The TLD is at the end of the addresses, such as .com, .info, .net, and so forth. Some businesses prefer to purchase more than one version, using a global domain (.com) as their official website and designing the others to refer people to their global domain. You can also include a geographic designation, such as ".com.au" for Australia or ".com.nz" for New Zealand.

Whichever approach you choose, the goal is to create a memorable domain so customers can easily find their way back to your site and share your information with friends. Avoid using words which are difficult to spell, or tags which may seem clever but are hard to recreate. If someone has already claimed the name you desire, don’t just change a singular word to a plural or deliberately misspell one of the words to create a unique name. While you may be able to reserve such a domain, it is unlikely many people will find you. A name which clearly identifies the type of business you have will be significantly more memorable, a key to garnering repeat traffic.

Domain Name Mistakes to Avoid

Avoid choosing a .net or .info version of a domain name that is already in use as .com. For instance, if would like the name partyguru.com, but it’s already taken, don’t just settle for partyguru.net. Most customers start with a .com search and you could be helping your competition build their business instead of yours! It’s a much better idea to try a different version, such as bestpartyguru.com instead. Also, try to avoid domain names that are excessively long. Short and sweet is easier to remember!

It’s also essential to avoid copyright or trademark infringements. If you have a question about whether a term you wish to use is registered to another company, check first and avoid future difficulties.

Article Source: http://www.articlebiz.com/article/1051548304-1-how-to-select-a-domain-name/