Day: November 28, 2020

Raycast (YC W20) Is Hiring Fullstack Software Engineers (EU, Remote)

Article URL: https://raycast.com/jobs/software-engineer-fullstack Comments URL: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=25217586 Points: 1 # Comments: 0 The post Raycast (YC W20) Is Hiring Fullstack Software Engineers (EU, Remote) appeared first on ROI Credit Builders.

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The post Raycast (YC W20) Is Hiring Fullstack Software Engineers (EU, Remote) appeared first on ROI Credit Builders.

New comment by ananya125 in "Ask HN: Who wants to be hired? (November 2020)"

Location: Europe/USA (Currently I am in India)

Remote: Yes

Willing to relocate: Yes

Technologies: Python, Clojure, Javascript, C/C++(STL), CSS, GoLang, Django

Email: ananyaagrawal125@gmail.com

Resume[PDF]: https://drive.google.com/file/d/11R2QnMomtBgjaz-76-Oj8CXs601…

I am a 4th year undergraduate student of bachelor’s in Indian Institute of Information Technology, Allahabad, India graduating in May 2021. I have previously worked at Gojek as a Product Engineering Intern, where I worked on building dev analytics dashboard to help 100+ developers across different teams within Gojek to identify and improve bottlenecks. I like building things and currently working on building https://featuremonkey.com – a user feedback management portal.

More info: https://ananyaagrawal.com

The post New comment by ananya125 in “Ask HN: Who wants to be hired? (November 2020)” appeared first on ROI Credit Builders.

Home Is No Haven for Iran's Regime

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The Good and Bad of Deadstock Products for E-commerce

E-commerce retailers face many obstacles in the realm of online business.

A common yet persistent issue is deadstock products.

The accumulation of deadstock inventory can drive up operational and warehouse costs. As more products enter the warehouse, the cost of storing unsold items can drain the valuable financial resources of your business.

What’s more, seasonal trends and products make it difficult to eliminate deadstock products completely.

How to solve this problem? This article explains how to avoid deadstock and how to get rid of it when it piles up in your warehouse.

Let’s start with the definition for deadstock first.

What Does Deadstock Mean?

Deadstock is synonymous with dead inventory.

These are items that haven’t been sold and are very unlikely to sell. If you don’t use an inventory management system, these goods likely pile up and remain forgotten in your warehouse.

An alternative definition of “deadstock” refers to goods that are no longer sold in stores. In this case, these deadstock goods, like unused or unworn shoes or vintage apparel, are sold at much higher rates.

For the purposes of this article, we won’t explore the latter definition in this post.

Is Deadstock Bad for Business?

Deadstock comes with a price.

Retailers won’t be able to recoup the cost of manufacturing products if they never sell.  

As a result, unwanted items take up space in your warehouse. A longer stay means more storage costs for your business.

How to calculate deadstock? To understand its consequences for your business, calculate the costs involved in holding onto these useless products.

List rental costs, utilities, equipment, insurance, and security used to guard your items.

Ideally, businesses make up for these costs through sales, but deadstock products remain stagnant in your warehouse. Instead of making a profit, retailers pay to keep these useless goods.

Deadstock also has an attached opportunity cost.

The space occupied by these items could have been used for “headstock” or highly profitable and bestselling items, which instantly make a profit for your business.

How to Avoid Deadstock

In my experience, you need to avoid deadstock as much as possible.

Business of Fashion reports that dead inventory costs around $50 billion per year for the US retail industry.

If a retail brand’s standard margin is around 60%, then a deadstock worth $40,000 represents around $100,000 worth of retail sales and $60,000 of gross margin dollars.

I’ve advised a lot of e-commerce stores, and I can tell you it’s best to avoid deadstock than to wait for it to snowball at a later time.

So today, I’ll share tips for avoiding deadstock.  

1. Improve Inventory Management For Less Deadstock

Inventory management is a major cause of deadstock.

Fortunately, an inventory management system can guarantee your inventory is monitored and managed appropriately.

Here are some popular inventory management systems:

  • inFlow Inventory: an inventory management system that can manage up to 100 products.
  • Sortly Pro: a cloud-based inventory management system that can handle up to 100 transaction entries per month.
  • Odoo: a free open source enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution.
  • ZhenHub: a cloud-based inventory management system for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs).

There is no right or wrong inventory management system. Instead, find a solution that meets your needs.

Once you have a system in place, keep track of the products on your shelves, as well as those that end up as dead inventory. In addition, you must identify the products with no sales or low sales for the past year.

An intelligent inventory management system can identify bestselling items, allowable return dates, expiration dates, as well as flopped goods you’re better off without.

2. Discount Potential Deadstock Items

Pay attention to what’s selling and what’s not.

Take into account the latest market trends. What are the popular products people love? How long will this trend last?

Seasonal products might be selling like hot cakes for the first few weeks, but the excitement fades eventually.

A good tip is to discount potential deadstock items by hosting end-of-season sales.

For example, Patagonia, The North Face, and H&M frequently have end-of-season sales to sell their jackets and coats once the winter season ends. This way, they can get rid of deadstock items and make way for next season’s collections.

Perishable goods won’t be sellable after their expiration date has passed. That’s precisely why you must monitor items that will almost reach their expiration date and then offer them at discounted prices.

Tools like Wasteless utilize AI to prevent food waste through a dynamic pricing model. By using machine learning, they can use variables like brand popularity, seasonal popularity, and expiration dates to determine the real-time price of perishable goods.  

Deadstock products for e commerce Wasteless tool

Of course, your profit margins will be lower than expected for discounted products. However, a discount helps you get rid of unpopular products, and it’s a lot better than stocking these goods in a warehouse and paying more for storage.

At the very least, you have an opportunity to make up for the manufacturing costs and break even.

3. Know Your Target Audience

This happens all the time: You promote the product, but it just won’t sell.

If an item remains unsold despite numerous promotions, your target audience probably doesn’t want them.

Every time you source potential products to sell, you must understand the conditions you are dealing with.

This is why market research and surveys are crucial to your success. The socioeconomic profile, gender, location, and interests of your audience can predict the outcome of the sales of your store.

So, before you pay for manufacturing costs, ensure your consumers want the product.

To get started, create a marketing persona for your online store. This doesn’t have to be complicated.

Here’s an example of a marketing persona that considers the demographics and characteristics of your consumers:

Deadstock products for e commerce Know your target audience

Another idea is to perform market research by sending regular surveys to pinpoint your customers’ needs. I highly recommend getting current customers as respondents because they’ve experienced your product and likely fit with the profile of your target market.

Survey Monkey recommends asking these questions to evaluate the product/market fit.

  • How did you find this product?
  • How would you feel if this product was no longer available?
  • What are the benefits of using this product?
  • What alternatives would you use if this product was no longer available?
  • Have you recommended using this product to anyone?

It’s best to conduct surveys regularly to identify opportunities within your target market.

Also, understand the items and trends that customers love and take them into consideration for future product releases. You can use inventory management software to identify products that sold out quickly to make sure you’re selling the products that shoppers need.

Having more bestselling items is key to the elimination of deadstock, and while you won’t always be able to sell 100% of items in your inventory, knowing your customers and assessing product/market fit will help reduce the accumulation of deadstock.

4. Diversify Your Products to Avoid Deadstock

You may opt to sell bestselling items only to avoid deadstock completely.

However, you must guarantee that most of the bestselling items in your store don’t have the same features or characteristics. Otherwise, you can get more deadstock too.

Having too many similar items may mean cannibalization. Some customers may prefer one brand or item over another, which leads to low sales numbers for other goods.

This is common for retailers offering similar items from multiple brands.

Diversify your product inventory to avoid this consequence.

A good tip is to add complementary products of existing items in your e-commerce store. For starters, complementary goods are products that are used together. They may be completely different from an item you’re selling, but their combination of complementary goods will sweeten the deal.

For example, if you’re an iPhone retailer, then add iPhone cases and accessories to your arsenal. As the value of the latest iPhone decreases, it may become more mainstream. Thus, more people will be buying your cases and accessories in the future.

Deadstock products for e commerce Diversify your products

Alternatively, you can offer an assortment of related products, instead of selling them separately.

For instance, Harry’s – a men’s grooming brand – offers a “Truman Set,” which includes a foam shave gel, blades, and razors packed in one convenient package.

Deadstock products for e commerce men s grooming brand

How Do I Get Rid Of Deadstock?

Now, if you already have deadstock, it’s time to get rid of it.

Here’s what you need to do.

1. Return Deadstock Items To Suppliers

If you’re in the window to return, this may be the best option.

In the short-run, you’ll pay a small fee, but at least you can avoid a major loss and more deadstock.  

As long as the items are in good condition, you may be able to return them to the supplier. However, review the return policy of suppliers first to guarantee they allow this method.

Most suppliers have a restocking fee worth 10% of the merchandise. You’ll likely get an option to pay in credit rather than cash.

2. Put Deadstock in Clearance Sections and Bundles

What if you sold some items at a discount, but it just won’t sell? You can take it even further.

Find out the lowest price that you can sell these products. Then bundle related and complementary products together and sell them as a set.

For example, Glossier bundles related items together and offers them at a discounted price. Many beauty enthusiasts prefer a complete set sold at a discounted rate, rather than purchasing a single item with no discount.

Deadstock products for e commerce Put deadstock in clearance section

If you have a lot of stocks with the same item, get rid of them through freebies and giveaways. Consumers love to get free stuff, so it may compel them to return to your online store and make a purchase.  

During the holidays, you can bundle items to create holiday gift sets with an assortment of products.

For example, Soko Glam bundles miniature-sized skincare products and sells them as a gift set for the season of giving. Plus, customers who make orders above $135 will receive a Dreamy Satin Pillowcase while supplies last.

how to get rid of deadstock

3. Sell to Deadstock Buyers

You’ll likely lose some cash, but getting some money back is better than a total loss.

Here are some deadstock buyers to consider:

  • Wholesale: If you have a lot of deadstock in good condition, you can sell them to wholesalers. For clothing retailers, popular boutique wholesale clothing suppliers include Sugarlips Wholesale, Bloom Wholesale, Wholesale Fashion Square, Tasha Apparel, Magnolia Fashion Wholesale, and LAShowRoom.
  • Amazon Seller Central: Amazon has a Seller Central where you can adjust the pricing or match your competitor’s lowest price.
  • eBay: Deadstock consisting of repaired or returned products could be sold to eBay at drastically reduced costs.
  • Consignment shops and warehouses: These buyers usually purchase clothing, home goods, and old items that could be sold at low prices.
  • Closeout liquidators: These businesses can buy a bulk of your deadstock and resell it in their own stores at cheaper prices.

4. Donate Deadstock to Charities

Finally, if a product just won’t sell, consider donating it to charity.

Donating to charity is a popular option for clothing retailers. You can sell deadstock items to discount stores like T.J.Maxx or the Outnet as a last-ditch attempt to make sales.

Some foundations like The Salvation Army and Oxfam accept donated clothes.

We bet there are many charities in your local communities and cities. You can donate to any organization, just make sure it’s legal. Find a reputable charity where you can sell your items.

While you may not be able to sell these goods, you can claim a tax write off for donating them. If handled well, this initiative will make your business look good.

Conclusion

If you want to eliminate deadstock products, make an active effort to find products that will sell.

Use an inventory management system to track unwanted items in your inventory. Bundle deadstock products and sell them as gift bundles or give them away as freebies. As a last resort, you can even sell deadstock products to wholesalers, consignment shops, Amazon, or eBay.

There are many options to avoid the accumulation of deadstock and get rid of unsold items stuck in your inventory,

How will you avoid deadstock products?

The post The Good and Bad of Deadstock Products for E-commerce appeared first on Neil Patel.

6 Alternatives to Amazon For E-commerce

With a net worth of  $1.7 trillion, Amazon has dominated the e-commerce sector for years, leaving many of its competitors in the shade. But are there alternatives to Amazon?

With an audience as vast as Amazon, small business start-ups and solo entrepreneurs flock to the site to sell the products, get established, and build their enterprises. Despite the audience Amazon offers, you may want to look for other online venues to list your items.

There are many good reasons to broaden your e-commerce horizons.

First, it makes little sense to put all your eggs in one basket. Second, selling on a wider range of marketplaces gets your products in front of a larger audience. And finally, looking at the other choices available could save you money on fees, or get you closer to your target buyers.

Below are some viable alternatives to Amazon. We’ll look at their advantages, their fee structures, and what makes them different.

Why You Should Use an Alternative to Amazon for Your E-commerce Business

We already touched on one of the main reasons to seek other venues: the perils of depending on one sales platform.

It’s not unheard of for sellers to have their accounts blocked. If you haven’t already established yourself on one of the alternatives to Amazon, your business could tank.

However, by setting up multiple accounts with different marketplaces, you’ve got greater flexibility if things go wrong. Plus, you can use other online platforms to test out which ones are the best for your products.

And there are other benefits in finding additional marketplaces, like:

Greater Flexibility 

All e-commerce sales platforms have some measure of control over your business. They determine:

  • What products you can list
  • The terms and conditions of doing business
  • Your payment options
  • Shipping fees

These terms might not be suitable for your business. So, If you’re looking for greater flexibility, then seeking alternatives to Amazon is a good idea.

Better Customer and Vendor Support

Perhaps you feel the vendor or customer support is lacking. Amazon provides useful resources for sellers, like its university. But some sellers feel seller support is sometimes thin, especially when things go wrong.

More Shipping Options and Lower Fees With Some Amazon Alternatives

Amazon has changed its fee structure over the years, bringing frustration to some.

Amazon sets its professional selling plan at $39.99, with individual plans available free. And referral fees differ, depending on which category you’re selling in.

Shipping is a further reason to consider seeking alternatives as individual sellers on Amazon lack flexibility over their shipping costs.

If you’re looking to cut fees or branch out, then signing with some alternatives to Amazon may allow you to further scale your business while reducing costs.

Amazon Alternative Payment Choices

If you’re a seller on Amazon, you’ll know it makes payment via ACH or electronic funds transfer. Amazon distributes these payments to your bank account every two weeks, and they can take up to five days to clear.

But that doesn’t always work for everyone. If you’re a small business and cash is tight, signing up to e-commerce platforms with a broader range of payment options can improve your cash flow.

What to Look for in an Amazon Alternative

Before you search for alternatives to Amazon, you need to decide what you want from your business. You’ll need to consider the products you’re selling and your target customer, too.

For example, if you’re selling printable products, Etsy could be an excellent choice. Or, if you’re looking for consumers who understand tech, you may find Newegg works well for you.

Other areas you’ll want to think about include:

Ease of Use

Marketplaces that allow you to add items efficiently mean you can list more products in less time. But you’ll want to view any alternatives to Amazon from your customer’s perspective too.

How important is the ease of use? Well, if you note some recent research from Digital Commerce 360 and Bitrate, you’ll see this is a significant factor in the buying decision.

When researching new platforms, perhaps test them out for yourself and consider areas like:

  • Navigation
  • Ease of checkout
  • Payment options
  • Shipping choices

User Types

Think about your ideal consumer and the type of users the platform attracts. For example, eBay is huge, with 182 million active buyers. It’s great for snapping up limited-time deals, brand name products, and pre-loved items.

However, it’s not always the first place shoppers think of when looking for handmade goods or unique items. They’re more likely to head somewhere like Etsy.

Fees

Fees can take a considerable chunk of your profits if you’re not careful. Depending on the fee structure, some sites may not be suitable if you’re selling smaller, lower value items.

If you need some help in this area, fee calculators are helpful. Here’s a list of the well-known ones.

Best Alternatives to Amazon for E-commerce

What are some of the best Amazon alternatives when you’re looking to sell your products online? Let’s look at some of the top options, in no particular order.

Bonanza

alternatives to amazon bonanza

Established in 2007, Bonanza has built itself a loyal following, with a vast range of categories. Sign up is free, and fees are straight forward. Final offer value fees are 3.5 percent for sales under $500. Sales over $500 attract an additional 1.5 percent fee.

Although it’s much smaller than Amazon, Bonanza has some advantages over its larger rival. They include a greater emphasis on building customer relationships and developing a sustainable business through repeat customers.

Equally appealing to sellers is the marketing tools Bonanza provides. These give you access to valuable data about product performance, allowing you to spot trends, optimize listings, and better market your items.

Other features include:

  • Automatic syncing with eBay, Amazon, and Shopify
  • Customized marketing tools
  • Image editing tools
  • Google integration
  • High level of customer support.

But what makes Bonanza stand out is its focus on unique items. It’s not trying to be another Amazon. As Bonanza puts it, it’s a site where you’ll find “everything but the ordinary”.

eBay

One of the most prominent alternatives to Amazon is eBay. Like Amazon, eBay has made considerable changes since its launch back in 1995. Over the years, eBay’s focus has moved away from the collectibles market it used to cater to, and it’s now more product-based.

Many famous brands like Rolex, Hasbro, and Microsoft make their goods available via ebay.com brand outlet site, enabling consumers to bag a bargain. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t still a place for more unusual or collectible items.

On eBay, listing fees and final value fees vary, but it sets many of its final value fees at 10 percent or less. If you need to calculate fees before listing, use an eBay fee calculator.

Some advantages of selling on eBay are:

  • A more comprehensive range of categories
  • More payment options for shoppers, like a credit/debit card, PayPal, and local collection. Sellers can also accept Apple Pay, Google Pay, and gift cards through managed payments.
  • Improved branding through eBay stores and marketing materials

What makes eBay stand out, though, is its auctions. Auctions may not be ideal for every business. However, sellers who specialize in collectible or rare items may find the bidding pushes their final sales price up higher than they could’ve imagined.

Etsy

If your business primarily sells printable products or art and craft items, then Etsy might be for you. Of the many alternatives to Amazon, Etsy has perhaps one of the most affordable and straightforward pricing approaches.

Each listing costs just 20 cents, and the listing is good for four months. Then there’s a five percent transaction fee for goods that sell. Payment processing fees are variable and depend on location. If you want to grow your business further, Etsy Plus is available at $10 a month.

Re-listing is simple, too. Just select the auto-renew option, and there shouldn’t be anything else to do on your part.

Advantages of selling on Etsy are:

  • Greater customization over how your store looks
  • Ideal for beginners
  • Lower fees
  • Sellers can list collectibles and vintage items on Etsy

That’s the advantages, but there are a couple of possible disadvantages worth mentioning. First, Etsy is much smaller than Amazon, which means there’s intense competition, so your products need to stand out.

Second, although fees are cheaper, you may make more sales on Amazon Handmade because of its larger audience share.

Walmart Marketplace

Amazon dominates e-commerce, but Walmart is gaining ground. Recent sales figures show Walmart’s e-commerce sales have soared by 74 percent. This stat means if you’re looking for alternatives to Amazon, Walmart could be promising.

Like Amazon, Walmart now offers a fulfillment service. Although storage and fulfillment fees apply, Walmart’s fee structure is less complicated than Fulfillment by Amazon, and referral fees are competitive.

alternatives to amazon walmart interest form

In addition, with Walmart’s marketplace, there’s no start-up or ongoing monthly fees. However, you’ll want to factor in other costs, like unique product codes (UPCs).

Advantages of selling on the Walmart marketplace include:

  • Lower costs
  • Less competition due to buyer/seller ratio
  • Price control over inventory

What makes the platform different? Unlike Amazon, Walmart’s marketplace is only open to invited brands. You can’t just register and start selling. But you can sign up.

To register your interest in selling, Walmart asks businesses to fill out the interest form.

Newegg

alternatives to amazon newegg

Newegg has gained a reputation as the top global tech marketplace online. But it also sells apparel, home and lifestyle products, sports/health-related items, TVs, and plenty more.

As for fees, non-elite membership is free. Elite membership has two tiers ranging from $29.95-$99.95 a month. Commissions vary, with the highest being 12 percent.

Advantages of selling on Newegg include:

  • Can be cheaper for tech products
  • Attracts tech buyers who are knowledgeable about products
  • The Newegg search engine makes finding electronics and components quicker
  • Customized marketing for businesses
  • Various payment choices for sellers including weekly ACH payments, PayPal, Wire Transfer, PingPong, Payoneer, and World First
  • A wide range of payments for buyers, including PayPal and BitPay

But it’s the multi-channel fulfillment option that may interest sellers the most. If you’re selling from various platforms, Newegg provides a central point to manage all your orders.

Shopify

When you sell on a third-party platform, you have limited control. Many online sellers favor setting up their stores the Shopify platform.

The site offers new sellers a 14-day free trial to get them started. After that, a basic Shopify store will cost you $29 a month. Online credit card rates are 2.9 percent + 30 cents. And you should find it easy enough to start selling.

Once you’ve signed up for the free trial, the next steps are to:

  • Add products
  • Selecting images
  • Set shipping details
  • Customize pages for search engines using keywords
  • Create main pages
  • Customize store

The benefits of Shopify include:

  • Highly-rated customer support and selling features
  • Greater customization
  • Large range of e-commerce tools and apps
  • Access to the e-commerce university
  • You can accept a large range of currencies

Conclusion

There are a variety of reasons you might be looking for alternatives to Amazon. Maybe you want a platform that provides a wider range of payment options, a site that’s more niche, or you just want a more extensive selection of online marketplaces to sell your wares.

As you can see, there are many venues available, and they all have their advantages. Sites like Bonanza have established a loyal audience, and Walmart’s e-commerce presence is growing strong.

Niche sites such as Etsy and Newegg are ideal for specialist items, and eBay offers greater customization and various selling methods, including auctions.

If you want to go it alone, there’s always Shopify, where you can set up and market your own e-commerce business.

Are you an online seller? Tell us about your favorite platform and your experiences below.

The post 6 Alternatives to Amazon For E-commerce appeared first on Neil Patel.

Top 10 Stamp Collecting Podcasts You Must Follow in 2020

Top 10 Stamp Collecting Podcasts Contents [show] ⋅About this list & ranking Stamp Collecting Podcasts Stamp Show Here Today – Postage stamp news, collecting and information Stamp Stories Conversations with Philatelists Bob Collects Stamps The JET Philatelics Podcast All About Stamps Submit Blog Do you want more traffic, leads, and sales? Submit your blog below if you […]

The post Top 10 Stamp Collecting Podcasts You Must Follow in 2020 appeared first on Feedspot Blog.

Top 10 COPD Podcasts You Must Follow in 2020

Top 10 COPD Podcasts Contents [show] ⋅About this list & ranking COPD Podcasts Morning Commute Podcast: Treating and Managing COPD COPD WELLNESS Medical Insider COPD GOLD – goldcopd.org Elizabeth Mendez The Blue Bloaters Submit Blog Do you want more traffic, leads, and sales? Submit your blog below if you want to grow your traffic and revenue. Submit […]

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Why It’s Risky to Change Your Business Name

Are you feeling inspired  to change the name of your business?  It’s understandable.  Sometimes something just strikes you as perfect and you feel you need to take action right away.  However, you might want to hold off on that for a minute.  Don’t change your business name until you understand how risky it is. 

STOP! Don’t Change Your Business Name Until You Read This

Even if the name of your business is super boring right now and you have an idea for the catchiest name ever, it is a big risk to change your business name.  The name of your business is incredibly far reaching.  It is on all insurances, licenses, bank accounts, credit accounts, and it is tied to your EIN if you have one.  

Imagine, every legal document and identification number that relates to  your business has your business name on it.  Furthermore, if you have a web presence, your social media accounts and website connect to that name.  If your URL has your business name in it, that complicates things even further.

Learn more here and get started with building business credit with your company’s EIN and not your SSN.

Why You Can’t Just Change It Everywherechange your biz name credit suite

Of course, you’re thinking you’ll just change it in all the places and you’ll be good.  That’s great, but what if you forget something random from a long time ago?  What if your business name is on a document you forgot even exists?  You may not think it matters much, but it does. Your business name can affect almost every aspect of fundability. Do you know why it’s risky to change your business name? Understanding exactly what fundability is and what affects it can go a long way toward helping you understand.  

What is Fundability

Fundability is the ability of your business to get funding. When lenders look at funding your business, they consider if it is a good idea to make the loan.  What do they look at to make that determination? It’s a lot more than you may think, and I guarantee that it reaches further than you realize. 

The first aspects of fundability have to do with how your business is set up. 

Consistent, Separate Contact Information

This is your business phone number and address that is separate from your personal phone number and address.   That may not mean you have a separate phone line, or even a separate location however.  

Honestly, you can get a business phone number and fax number pretty easily that will work over the internet instead of phone lines.  Then, the phone number will forward to any phone you want it too so you can simply use your personal cell phone or landline.  Whenever someone calls your business number it will ring straight to you. 

You can use a virtual office for a separate business address. This isn’t what you may think.  A virtual office 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. 

But imagine if your phone number and address are listed under one name, and then you change the business name.  It is complex and time consuming to change your information everywhere.  Something is almost certain to get missed, and customers are going to be confused. 

EIN

This is an identifying number for your business that works in a way similar to how your SSN works for you personally.  You can get one for free from the IRS.  However, if you change your business name, you’ll have to make sure you have an EIN that is attached to the new name.  Furthermore, you’ll have to ensure all the accounts that you have using that EIN are changed to reflect your new name. 

Incorporate

Incorporating your business as an LLC, S-corp, or corporation is necessary to fundability.  It lends credence to your business as one that is legitimate. It also offers some protection from liability. 

Which option you choose does not matter as much for fundability as it does for your budget and needs for liability protection.  It’s best to talk to your attorney or a tax professional about that issue.  However, when you incorporate you are going  to lose the time in business that you already have.  You essentially become a new entity.  Basically, you have to start over.  You’ll even lose any positive payment history you may have accumulated. 

This is why it is important to incorporate as soon as possible.  Is necessary for fundability and for building business credit, but so is time in business.  The longer you have been in business the more fundable you appear to be in the eyes of lenders.  That starts on the date of incorporation, regardless of when you actually started doing business. 

If you want to change your business name and you are not yet incorporated, then when you do incorporate is the best time to make it happen.  Do it sooner rather than later. 

Business Bank Account

You should already have a separate bank account for your business transactions. If you don’t, you need to make that happen now.  There are a few reasons for this.  First, it will help you keep track of business finances.  It will also help you keep them separate from personal finances for tax purposes. 

There’s more to it however.  There are several types of funding you cannot get without a business bank account.  Many lenders and credit cards want to see one with a minimum average balance.  In addition, you cannot get a merchant account without a business account at a bank. That means, you cannot take credit card payments.  Studies show consumers tend to spend more when they can pay by credit card. 

Now, here is how your business name, and the risk when you change your business name, comes into play.  This account has to be in your business name.  If you change that name, you’ll have to go through the hassle of changing the name on that account. Not only that, but if you have any drafts coming out, you will have to make sure information is updated with those accounts.  Otherwise, you could end up with unpaid bills.

Licenses

For a business to be legitimate it has to have all of the necessary licenses it needs to run.  If it doesn’t, warning signals are going blare.  Do you know what else will set off some major red flags?  If your business name and the name on your license do not match.    

Business Website

I am sure you are wondering how a business website can affect your ability to get funding.  Think about it.  These days, if you don’t have a website you may as well not even exist.  Yet, having a poorly put together website can be even worse.  It is the first impression you make on many, and if it appears to be unprofessional or confusing it will not bode well for you with consumers or potential lenders. 

Spending the time and money necessary to ensure your website is professionally designed and works well is vital.  Paying for hosting is important too. Don’t use a free hosting service.  Also, your business needs a dedicated business email address. It should have the  same URL as your Website.  

Now, imagine your URL and email are tied to your business name.  If you change that, you have to redesign  your whole site to reflect the new name.  Changing those things takes time and money. That’s not even to mention how confused people will be when they do an  internet search for your business using a different name, or when they get to your website and see a name they aren’t expecting.

Learn more here and get started with building business credit with your company’s EIN and not your SSN.

Business Credit Reports

These are reports, like your personal credit reports, that detail  the credit history of your business.  It is a tool to help lenders determine how credit worthy your business is.  

Where do business credit reports come from?  There are a lot of different places, but the main ones are Dun & Bradstreet, Experian, Equifax, and FICO SBSS.  

Lenders see this report.  They rely on it heavily when it comes to making lending decisions.  Even if your business credit is stellar, seeing your business listed under a bunch of different names can cause a problem.  They start worrying about things like fraud, and that can cause an automatic denial.  

Even worse, if things aren’t taken care of properly, you could end up with accounts reporting to two different credit reports, wrong accounts on wrong reports, or some other confusing credit report fiasco simply from choosing to change your business name.   

Other Business Data Agencies 

In addition to the business credit reporting agencies that directly calculate and issue credit reports, there are other business data agencies that affect those reports indirectly.  Two examples of this are LexisNexis and The Small Business Finance Exchange. These two agencies gather data from a variety of sources, including public records.  This means they could even have access to information relating to automobile accidents and liens. While you may not be able to access or change the data the agencies have on your business, you can ensure that any new information they receive is positive.  Enough positive information can help counteract any negative information from the past. 

The same issues apply.  If your business name doesn’t match across the board, lenders could get uncomfortable.

Identification Numbers 

In addition to the EIN, there are identifying numbers that go along with your business credit reports.  Some of them are simply assigned by the agency, like the Experian BIN.  Some, like a D-U-N-S number, you have to apply for, of course using your business name.  

Here’s another place where you have to follow through if you change your business name.  You have to make sure your new name isconnected to your old D&B number, or get a new number.  It can become very complicated. 

Then other numbers, like your BIN from Experian, will need to be updated as well. 

Business Credit History

Your credit history has everything to do with everything related to your credit score, which is a huge factor in the fundability of your business.  

Your credit history consists of a number of things including: 

  • How many accounts are reporting payments?
  • How long have you had each account? 
  • What type of accounts are they?
  • How much credit are you using on each account versus how much is available?
  • Are you making your payments on these accounts consistently on-time?

Learn more here and get started with building business credit with your company’s EIN and not your SSN.

The more accounts you have reporting on-time payments, the stronger your credit score will be.  I’ve already touched on this above. When you change your business name, this information can become very confusing unless you handle things very carefully.  The less confusing things are for lenders, the better.

Is it Really that Risky to Change Your Business Name? Yes!

When you change your business name, you start a sort of domino effect.  The problem is, the dominos weave in and out of a spider web formation that reaches further than you can probably imagine.  If just one is out of place the whole thing can fall.  Lenders hone in on discrepancies, and sometimes the result is simply denial.  No questions asked, they just deny the loan based on too many inconsistencies.  

The only really good time to change your business name is when you incorporate.  Still, even then it is best not to.  Consistency is key, and trying to backtrack and make changes everywhere they need to be made costs time and money. Trying to explain gaps and changes on a report and how everything ties together is even riskier.  The more complicated things are, and the harder a lender has to work to see that you are fundable, the less likely approval becomes.  

To make a long story short, you need to carefully weigh any benefit you think you may gain from changing your business name against all the costs.  While there could be a few very specific situations where this isn’t the case, as a general rule the benefit doesn’t outweigh the cost.

The post Why It’s Risky to Change Your Business Name appeared first on Credit Suite.

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