Author: Iluminada Sullivan

Prison for Hong Kong Democrats

Nine are sentenced, including Martin Lee and Jimmy Lai.

How to Create Evergreen Content Right From the Start

Evergreen content engages and educates readers for longer without a huge amount of effort. Once you master the art of writing “timeless” content, you can ensure your articles, e-books, and tutorials stay relevant for years to come.  Below, I’m going to show you exactly why evergreen content should be part of every marketer’s content strategy, …

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Ep. #558: Annabelle Gurwitch, Scott Galloway, Larry Wilmore

Bill’s guests are Annabelle Gurwitch, Scott Galloway, and Larry Wilmore. (Originally aired 3/12/21)

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Top 15 Daily Herald RSS Feeds

Top Daily Herald RSS Feeds Contents [show] ⋅About this list & ranking The Daily Herald RSS Feeds Daily Herald » Local News RSS Feed Daily Herald » Utah News RSS Feed Daily Herald » World News RSS Feed Daily Herald » National News RSS Feed Daily Herald » Community News RSS Feed Daily Herald » Entertainment RSS …

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New comment by mahyarr in "Ask HN: Who is hiring? (January 2021)"

OpenPhone | Front-end, Back-end, and Mobile Software Engineers | San Francisco & Remote (only US/CA)

https://openphone.co

We are a well funded startup with a very strong engineering and product culture going after a legacy space with an innovative product and ambitious goals. We are growing very fast and if you join now, you will have an outsized impact on the future.

We also offer very competitive salaries and benefits. Apply here: https://jobs.lever.co/openphone

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What’s the Best Way to Build Business Credit in a Recession? We Have the Secret!

Thinking of throwing in the towel, as it looks like the US slides further and further into a recession? Don’t! This can be a great time to regroup and get your business set up for even more success down the line. Building business credit should be on your to-do list. So, find out the best way to build business credit in a recession.

Learn the Best Way to Build Business Credit in a Recession

We can show you the best way to build business credit in a recession! Get the kind of business funding that can take your business to new heights! And it can happen no matter what goes on with the economy.

Economic Downturns and Company Funding

The United States’s economy has been through any variety of changes throughout the years. Our financial fortunes can depend upon developments in technology, diplomatic ties (or cutting those ties), the weather, and also more. Business credit, fortunately, is an asset which you can develop even during financial slumps. Nonetheless, you may need to get a little creative with it, and with various other forms of business funding.

The Best Way to Build Business Credit in a Recession – But What’s Business Credit, Anyway?

Small business credit is credit in a business’s name. It doesn’t link to a business owner’s personal credit, not even if the owner is a sole proprietor and the sole employee of the small business.

Accordingly, a business owner’s business and individual credit scores can be very different.

The Benefits

Because business credit is distinct from consumer, it helps to secure a business owner’s personal assets, in the event of a lawsuit or business bankruptcy.

Also, with two separate credit scores, a business owner can get two different cards from the same merchant. This effectively doubles buying power.

Another benefit is that even start-ups can do this. Heading to a bank for a business loan can be a recipe for frustration. But building company credit, when done the right way, is a plan for success.

Individual credit scores rely on payments but also various other factors like credit usage percentages.

But for company credit, the scores actually just hinge on whether a company pays its debts on a timely basis.

The Best Way to Build Business Credit in a Recession – The Process

Building business credit is a process, and it does not occur automatically. A business will need to actively work to build company credit.

Nonetheless, it can be done easily and quickly, and it is much speedier than building consumer credit scores.

Merchants are a big aspect of this process.

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

The Best Way to Build Business Credit in a Recession – Enhancing Company Fundability

A company must be fundable to credit issuers and vendors.

Therefore, a company will need a professional-looking web site and email address. And it needs to have site hosting bought from a vendor like GoDaddy.

Also, business telephone numbers must have a listing on ListYourself.net.

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

A business will also need a bank account dedicated strictly to it, and it needs to have all of the licenses essential for operation.

Licenses

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

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

Learn more here and get started toward establishing small business credit in a recession.

The Best Way to Build Business Credit in a Recession – Working with the IRS

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

A company may begin as a sole proprietor. But they absolutely need to change to a type of corporation or an LLC.

This is to limit risk. And it will make the most of tax benefits.

A business entity matters when it concerns tax obligations and liability in case of a lawsuit. A sole proprietorship means the owner is it when it comes to liability and taxes. Nobody else is responsible.

The best thing to do is to incorporate. You should only look at a DBA as an interim step on the way to incorporation.

The Best Way to Build Business Credit in a Recession – Starting Off the Business Credit Reporting Process

Begin at the D&B website and obtain a cost-free D-U-N-S number. A D-U-N-S number is how D&B gets a small business into their system, to produce a PAYDEX score. If there is no D-U-N-S number, then there is no record and no PAYDEX score.

Once in D&B’s system, search Equifax and Experian’s web sites for the business. You can do this at www.creditsuite.com/reports. If there is a record with them, check it for correctness and completeness. If there are no records with them, go to the next step in the process.

By doing this, Experian and Equifax will have something to report on.

Starter Vendor Credit

First you should establish tradelines that report. Then you’ll have an established credit profile, and you’ll get a business credit score.

And with an established business credit profile and score you can start to get credit for numerous purposes, and from all sorts of places.

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

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

Therefore, if you get an approval for $1,000 in vendor credit and use all of it, you need to pay that money back in a set term, like within 30 days on a Net 30 account.

Details

Net 30 accounts have to be paid in full within 30 days. 60 accounts have to be paid in full within 60 days. Unlike revolving accounts, you have a set time when you have to pay back what you borrowed or the credit you used.

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

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

Vendor Credit – It Makes Sense

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

As you get starter credit, you can also start to get credit from retailers. This is to continue to demonstrate you are reliable and pay punctually. Here are some stellar choices from us: https://www.creditsuite.com/blog/5-vendor-accounts-that-build-your-business-credit/

Uline

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

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

Quill

Quill is another true starter vendor. You can find them online at www.quill.com. They sell office, packaging, and cleaning supplies. And they also sell toner, office furniture, and even shipping and school supplies. They report to Dun and Bradstreet every quarter.

To apply, you MUST have a D&B PAYDEX score. If not given a Net 30 they will ask you to do prepaid orders of $100.00. Normally any prepaid order won’t report but you would need them to have given you a Net 30 account. Net 30 accounts require $50.00 purchase to report.

New business or businesses with no credit history may need to prepay purchases until Net 30 approval. Terms are Net 30.

  • Here’s how to qualify:
  • Your business entity must be in good standing with the applicable Secretary of State
  • You must have an EIN and a D-U-N-S number
  • Business address (it has to match everywhere)
  • Business license (if applicable)
  • A corporate bank account

Apply online or over the phone.

Grainger Industrial Supply

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

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

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

Apply online or over the phone.

The Best Way to Build Business Credit in a Recession – Accounts That Do Not Report

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

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

Store Credit

Store credit comes from a variety of retail companies.

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

Fleet Credit

Fleet credit is from companies where you can buy fuel, and fix and maintain vehicles. You must use your Social Security Number and date of birth on these applications for verification purposes. For credit checks and guarantees, make sure to apply using the business’s EIN.

Learn more here and get started toward establishing small business credit in a recession.

Cash Credit

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

These are often MasterCard credit cards.

Learn more here and get started toward establishing small business credit in a recession.

The Best Way to Build Business Credit in a Recession – Monitor Your Business Credit

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

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

Update Your Data

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

The Best Way to Build Business Credit in a Recession – Fix Your Business Credit

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

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

Disputes

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

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

The Best Way to Build Business Credit in a Recession – A Word about Building Business Credit

Always use credit smartly! Don’t borrow more than what you can pay off. Monitor balances and deadlines for payments. Paying promptly and in full will do more to raise business credit scores than nearly anything else.

Building company credit pays. Good business credit scores help a small business get loans. Your credit issuer knows the small business can pay its financial obligations. They recognize the small business is bona fide.

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

The Best Way to Build Business Credit in a Recession – Takeaways

Business credit is an asset which can help your company for many years to come. The recession will not last forever.

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Stock Photos are Dead: Create These Blog Images Instead

Illustration by Laetro

The use of images in your blog posts is a no-brainer.

Images are an easy way to break up chunks of text, add context, or give your readers a more accessible medium through which to digest your content.

With the growth of written content online, it’s harder to have your content be unique from others. Writers need to adapt to the changing landscape.

How can you continue to engage your audience when so many bloggers have written on the same topics—and will continue to do so?

The answer is original imagery.

Blog Image Trends: Why Stock Photos Are Dead

With more content available on the web every day, it’s more important than ever to stand out.

While finding ways to put a unique spin on your blog post topics is critical, there are only so many angles on one subject. You need other types of content, such as photographs and illustrations, to make your mark.

Unfortunately, stock photos just don’t cut it anymore when you have the resources and time to make an impact.

stock photos are dead- use these blog images instead
Illustration by Laetro

This reason is in part because blog images don’t only live on your blog. They make the rounds on Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest whenever your posts are shared. Chances are, your users have seen similar stock photos many times already, and they’re bored with them.

With so many articles to read, videos to watch, and social media news to ingest, the average reader won’t spend hours looking for the best article on your topic. They’ll choose the most visually appealing option nearly every time.

This is backed by visual content statistics, such as those collected by Venngage. When surveying marketers on content that helped them reach their marketing goals, original images performed best 40% of the time compared to stock photos at 13%.

So before you use stock photography in your next blog post, ask yourself:

Will my readers interact with the same stale image they’ve seen numerous times when researching this topic? Or will they choose to interact with an original image that more perfectly captures the content?

Top Reasons You Should Use Interactive and Original Images on Your Blog

Your goal as a digital marketer is to increase conversions.

So how do you do this even better than you already are, given the changing online landscape?

There are plenty of ways to drive traffic to your website. But what’s more important is driving the right traffic—the users who will engage with your content.

Images can help. According to BlogTyrant, images can up conversions by over 300%.

stock photos are dead - use these blog images instead
Illustration by Laetro

But keep in mind the kinds of images you use can have an impact on your conversions, too.

For years, stock imagery was the norm. But, it’s time to move away from those pictures.

Why? According to a study done by Marketing Experiments, readers are 35% more likely to convert when presented with a non-stock photo.

Original images offer authenticity stock ones can’t provide. They offer your readers a peek behind the curtain, allowing them to see a deeper side of your content.

Unique blog image content can offer other benefits, including increased customer trust and brand recognition.

According to Brain Rules, a slogan alone only sticks in the minds of 10% of people. When related imagery is added, though, retention rises to 65%. That’s an increase you can’t ignore if increasing brand recognition is on your radar.

Original image content has an often-overlooked SEO benefit, too, and that’s the improvement of Google’s E-A-T score. The E-A-T score lets Google assess content quality based on these three standards:

  • Expertise
  • Authoritativeness
  • Trustworthiness
stock photos are dead, use these blog images instead
Illustration by Laetro

How can original imagery improve your E-A-T rating?

Whether you shoot and edit photography on your own or you work with a digital illustrator, your unique imagery will have a personal spin. If done right, this will become a vital part of your personal brand strategy.

You show expertise by including images that clearly demonstrate you understand your content.

You show authoritativeness by having consistent, unique branding people recognize immediately.

You show trustworthiness by providing information through images that are accurate and increase user’s knowledge.

A strong personal brand will bump all three elements of an E-A-T rating.

Placing Images on Your Blog

Images, just like text, can also be perceived as “fluff.” Because of this, you need to know when to use pictures on your blog to optimize user experience and benefit your SEO.

You should use images to do three very specific things.

Break Up Large Chunks of Text

According to a study by Microsoft, the average attention span of heavy screen users is a mere eight seconds.

That means you have eight seconds to captivate your audience—and large blocks of text may make them click away pretty quickly.

However, you don’t have to write two sentence posts to make them take fewer than eight seconds to read. Instead, employ clever tactics to keep your readers engaged.

breaking up text in blog images
Illustration by Laetro

One tactic is to introduce other media, such as photos or digital illustrations. This creates a less intimidating reading experience while also making the post more visually appealing.

Explain a Concept

Some concepts are too abstract or complex to explain effectively in writing, especially if your audience isn’t strictly experts in your topic.

Custom diagrams and visuals can help readers understand the material.

Enliven the Content

As much as you like to think your content is witty and engaging, some topics just won’t interest readers for very long. You can use original visuals to add some life to otherwise “dull” content in these cases.

When Should You Use Custom Illustrations or Photos?

The cost of custom graphics may be prohibitive for some bloggers, but it is possible to find some middle ground.

Use custom illustrations and photography sparingly. Ask yourself where they make the most sense and insert them accordingly.

If you’re creating a landing page for a new product or service, for example, this would be the place to splurge. After all, you want this content to stand out from your competitors—what better way than with a custom graphic?

You can also utilize custom illustrations to drive a point home or explain data.

Whether a comic strip panel, a diagram, or a flow chart, you can use custom illustrations to share ideas with your readers in a way words simply can’t.

When Should You Create Interactive Graphics?

You can take your blog’s imagery one step further with interactive graphics.

Interactive graphics are custom graphics that support reader interactions like mouse pointer movement, clicks, or keyboard input.

This form of original imagery is commonly used in infographics, though other display types include side-by-side comparisons, flow charts, and graphs.

The most obvious use for interactive graphics is to catch the reader’s eye.

Perhaps more importantly, they can also be used to break complex information down into bite-sized chunks. For example, take a look at this nifty interactive graphic that shows users how Google search works without becoming overwhelmed.

Examples of Successful Blog Images

There are plenty of ways to use images on your blog.

Here’s one creative example from Oberlo:

Examples of successful blog images

Instead of one lengthy infographic, the content creators chose individual infographic “slides” to answer each question on their post about social media statistics.

This use of graphics achieves two things:

  1. It makes the information easy to digest.
  2. It makes it simple for readers to share information on social media.

As mentioned above, one of the benefits of original blog imagery is the personal branding aspect. When you use a particular style consistently, it becomes synonymous with your brand.

Copyblogger provides an excellent example of this:

Copyblogger example of blog image

Their featured images consistently use quotes overlaid on eye-catching images. They work as a watermark of sorts, as anyone who sees their imagery elsewhere will be able to identify them as belonging to Copyblogger immediately.

And what about interactive content? Your options are only limited by your imagination.

Take a look at this comprehensive timeline of the Marvel Cinematic Universe:

marvel examples in blog images

As you scroll through the timeline, new images and text content can be seen. This example tells a complex story in a linear, non-intimidating format.

What to Use Instead of Stock Photos

You know you should be using unique imagery on your blog. But what should you use instead of stock photos?

There are plenty of options for every budget and skill level.

Take Your Own Photos

You don’t need a professional setup to take photographs for your blog. Even a smartphone camera can be used to take your own photos.

Depending on the amount of time you have and your budget, you can edit these photos on your phone or by using software like Photoshop.

Edit Stock Photos

Not all stock photos are bad, but you must be purposeful in the ones you choose.

It’s best to choose stock images that haven’t been used too often. How can you know. Using Google’s reverse image search, you can search images to see how many results they get. The less, the better.

Even more than that, though, you can make tweaks to existing stock photos to give them a new look.

Some quick edits include:

  • Flipping the image horizontally
  • Adding a text overlay
  • Adding an image effect or filter
  • Cropping the image (from rectangle to square, for example)

The easiest edits can be done using free or low-cost online tools or your computer’s in-built image editing software.

Use Online Tools and Software

Tools exist which enable you to edit or create images in any format and style. You can use these tools to edit stock photos, as mentioned above, or build imagery using digital assets.

Many tools like Lucidpress even have pre-built templates to inspire your designs.

Use Custom Images

Images are so much more than photographs, and you don’t need to rely on photography alone to add visuals to your blog.

Custom images can also include digital assets, illustrations, and iconography.

How to Get Original or Interactive Blog Images

It’s never been easier or more affordable to get original and interactive blog images.

When it comes to hiring a professional, you have options. You can easily find freelancers on sites like Fiverr or Upwork or use a service like Design Pickle.

If you know of a digital artist with a style you like, you may be able to commission them. They are often more expensive than the freelancers you’ll find on the websites mentioned above, but they’re great if you need a specific style.

For bloggers strapped for time, there are services you can hire to do the heavy lifting. The service may be a creative agency or a blog content specialist. Either way, you provide details, and they’ll commission work on your behalf.

Do you have more time than money? You can also create blog images using tools like Canva, Pixlr, or PicMonkey. For a more professional finish, you can invest in a creative suite like Adobe Creative Cloud.

How Much Do Original Blog Images Cost?

As with most services, there are options for almost every budget.

If you hire a freelancer for a one-off gig, then the price varies based on the number of images, the complexity of the work, and how you plan to use the final product.

In some cases, you may be able to get a discount when you buy in bulk.

Commissioning a professional is likely to be the most expensive option. Unless you have money to burn, this should be reserved for high-impact projects, like illustrations for sales landing pages or campaign launches.

Tools to Create Blog Images

Whether you’re on a limited budget or just want to let the creative juices flow, you can opt to create your images.

There are free and low-cost options, such as Canva and PicMonkey. These tools have limitations, including watermarks, if you don’t opt for premium memberships. You also need to be sure all assets used in your design are copyright-free.

For 100% original work, you may find creative suites like Adobe to be the best bang for your buck. With access to tools like Photoshop, InDesign, and Illustrator, you can create and edit various blog illustrations, diagrams, and original photography.

There are plenty of tutorials available online for creating graphics using Adobe Creative Cloud—so if you’re unable to pay a designer for their services, you don’t have to just guess about how to do this.

If you’re in a time crunch, there are even services that offer quick turnaround times on unique illustrative designs. With tools such as Laetro, you can have a one-of-a-kind illustration in only 24 hours.

Conclusion

There’s no need to scroll through page after page of stock photos to find the right images for your blog post. You can create original blog images, whether by yourself or with the help of a professional.

Original blog imagery, including photography and graphics, can take your blog posts to the next level. It also helps build your overall brand and take your marketing to the next level.

With plenty of options at your fingertips, from free tools like Canva to paid software like Adobe to freelance artists, there’s no reason not to use original images on your blog. 

Which of the tools mentioned above are you most likely to use to create images for your blog? Or do you prefer ones we haven’t mentioned? Let us know!

The post Stock Photos are Dead: Create These Blog Images Instead appeared first on Neil Patel.

UFC Fight Night viewers guide: Santos-Teixeira an elite battle with uncertain stakes

Thiago Santos faces Glover Teixeira in a meeting of top-10 light heavyweights in the main event of UFC Fight Night on Saturday.

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Bonus Bill (Originally aired 06/24/16)

Bonus Bill (Originally aired 06/24/16) – Listen in on the jokes only Bill’s audience got to hear.

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How Does Your Garden Grow? Best Business Line of Credit in a Recession

The COVID-19 pandemic caught the world by surprise and turned the economy upside down.  If you are a business trying to make it during this time, we can help.  The Federal government has approved funding through  The CARES Act, including the Paycheck Protection Plan.  In addition, many states and local organizations are offering their own COVID-19 relief options.  Beyond that, we can help you find the best business line of credit in a recession.

A Business Line of Credit is Like Miracle Grow for Your Business

A business line of credit can be an incredible tool for your business, even in a recession. You don’t want just any line of credit however. You want the best one for your business needs.

Not all businesses are the same, and not all lines of credit are best for all businesses. Different limits, rates, and terms work better for some than others. How do you ensure you are getting the best business line of credit in a recession?

What’s a Line of Credit?

It can help to get a quick rundown of exactly what a line of credit is. The most basic definition is that it is a revolving line of credit, similar to a credit card. You have a limit and continuous access to that limit while making payments only on the portion you use each month.

For example, if you have a $10,000 line of credit, you can use however much of those funds you need each month for whatever you want, unless your lender issues some sort of restriction. If you use $2,000, then when you get your statement your payment will be based on $2,000 plus the interest, rather than a payment plus interest on the entire credit line.

If you were to pay $1,000, then spend another $500, you would pay on the $1,500 balance the next month. Your payments change as your balance changes. Just like with a credit card.

Access is most typically granted through checks or a card connected to the line of credit account.  Electronic draws and transfers are also popular.

Learn bank rating secrets with our free, sure-fire guide which can even help during a recession.

Line of Credit vs. Credit Cards

The question is always asked what the difference is between a line of credit and a credit card, and why is one better than the other? The truth is that in some cases, a credit card may be the better option. There is a choice to make based on several different factors.

The main difference between the two that most borrowers need to know is that a line of credit typically has a consistently lower interest rate.  Also, there are no perks like 0% interest or cash back that you sometimes see with credit cards.

What Signifies the Best Business Line of Credit in a Recession?

The best business line of credit in a recession is going to be the one with the best rates and terms that your business can qualify for.  That makes finding it a little more involved. You have to know where you stand and what various lenders offer and require.

It will take some leg work on your part to pull together the information needed for application.  You will also need to understand that the best business line of credit in a recession may not come from the same place you would have gotten a business line of credit pre-recession.  You might have better luck with online lenders or smaller banks over larger traditional banks during an economic downturn.

A Word of Warning

Before you apply for the best business line of credit in a recession, remember that balance is important.  Recession times are by default, hard.  A line of credit can ease some of the burden, but be careful not to let the credit line itself become a burden.  Know your limits as far as what you can pay.

If you do not make payments on-time, you could end up with more trouble than you already had.

How to Find the Best Business Line of Credit in a Recession?

There are several steps to this process.

1. Why do you need a business line of credit in a recession?

Figuring this out could be the most vital step in finding the best business line of credit for your needs. You have to understand why you need a credit line in the first place. Here are some examples of how a business may use a line of credit.

  • Take advantage of a sale on inventory, raw materials, or supplies. This can reduce the cost of goods sold and consequently, increase the bottom line.
  • Purchase or repair minor equipment when needed. This would be like a new printer or laptop. It would not include items like an industrial oven or delivery truck. Larger equipment would best be purchased with an equipment loan.
  • Bridge temporary cash gaps or continuous, known cash gaps due to timing issues. An example of this would be several bills that are due at the beginning of the month when you know your largest contracts pay at the end of the month. The money is coming, but the bills come due before the money gets there. You can pay the bills with the line of credit, then pay off the line of credit when the contracts pay.

Another example of this is a seasonal line of credit for a business that does the majority of its sales during a certain time of the year.  A florist does a large percentage of sales during Valentines day, so a seasonal line of credit can come in handy to bridge the cash gap during other times of the year.

2. Determine your options.

Shop around with various financial institutions to determine which ones offer the best business lines of credit in a recession. You will want to look at factors such as interest rate and credit limit in relation to what you need and can afford.

Check with various types of lenders to get a feel for which ones offer what you need.  Check with larger commercial banks, small local institutions and credit unions, and alternative lenders such as those that operate exclusively online.

Pay specific attention to eligibility requirements to avoid wasting your time with those you do not qualify for.

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3. Know where you stand.

Your ability to get approval for the best business line of credit in a recession will be directly related to your business credit. Traditional banks pay more attention to personal credit, but they crack down a lot on lending when there is a recession.  Non-traditional lenders may also consider income and cash flow. They may, in addition, rely heavily on your business credit score when making an approval decision about a line of credit.

A lower business credit score does not necessarily mean you can’t get approval.  It could greatly affect your interest rate and credit limit however.

Consider signing up for a credit monitoring service that lets you keep tabs on your business credit and what is affecting it each month. The one offered by CreditSuite.com is easy to use and cost effective.

Once you have a handle on why you need a business line of credit, what is available, and what you may actually be eligible for, you can make a decision as to where you are going to apply and which product you are going to apply for.

Determining which of these lenders has the best business line of credit in a recession for you goes back to knowing what you need, who has it, and who will approve you for it.

When Is a Line of Credit Better than a Credit Card?

If you are going to need to make payments, a line of credit is a better option. The reason is pretty simple. The credit rate is almost always lower. The few exceptions are those cards that offer 0% APR for a short period of time.

If you are going to use a credit card to make regular purchases you intend to pay off immediately, that’s another story.  Especially if you qualify for a card with perks such as cash back.  In that case, you may find that you can benefit from using a credit card over a line of credit.

An example would be if you wanted to use your business credit card to make your monthly supplies purchase each month and then pay it off in the following month. You could take advantage of the cash back and reduce your overall cost.

To float a cash flow gap or make significant purchases that you will need to pay out over a short amount of time, a line of credit is almost always the best choice.

Where to Find the Best Business Line of Credit in a Recession

Some small businesses will have a hard time getting approval from a traditional lender due to poor credit or a lack of sufficient credit history.  We found examples of what alternative lenders are offering currently. Keep in mind these offerings can change, so make sure to visit the lender and verify.

Kabbage

Kabbage offers a credit line of up to $150,000 with no credit score required. The catch is that the interest rate is between 32% and 108%. The business must have been in existence for at least one year and have revenue of at least $50,000.

The interest rate is very high. This is really only an option for those businesses that cannot get financing due to a low or nonexistent credit score and need funding immediately.

StreetShares

There is a credit line available here of up to $100,000.  A business must have what they consider to have “reasonable credit.”  It also must be in business for at least one year and have more than $25,000 in revenue. Repayment is weekly.

Due to the lower revenue requirement, this is a good option for smaller businesses with okay credit scores but lower annual revenue. Also, the interest rate minimum is lower, with the low end at 9%.

OnDeck

If you have a credit score of at least 600 you can get a credit line of up to $100,000 with OnDeck. There is a $20 per month maintenance fee and weekly repayment. The interest rate is a little higher here than with those that require a higher credit score minimum. It ranges from 13.99% to 39.99%.

Again, due to the higher interest rate, this should only be an option if you cannot meet the higher credit score requirement.

Lending Club

The credit line offered by lending club goes up to a limit of $300,000. It requires a credit score of 600.  In addition, at least one year in business and at least $50,000 in revenue are necessary. The repayment term is 25 months, and they require collateral for limits over $100,000.

This is a good option for those that meet the requirement as there is a higher limit available with collateral, and the interest rate can go as low as 6.25%. The repayment terms are much friendlier as well.

Credit Line Hybrid: Another Option

A credit line hybrid is revolving, unsecured financing.  It allows you to fund your business without putting up collateral, and you only pay back what you use.  It even works for startups.

What are the Qualifications?

How hard is it to qualify?  It’s probably easier than you think.  You do need good personal credit.  That is, your personal credit score should be at least 685.  In addition, you can’t have any liens, judgments, bankruptcies or late payments.  Also, in the past 6 months, you should have less than 5 credit inquiries, and you should have less than a 45% balance on all business and personal credit cards.  It’s also preferred that you have established business credit as well as personal credit.

If you do not meet all of the requirements, all is not lost. You can take on a credit partner that meets each of these requirements.  Many business owners work with a friend or relative to fund their business. If a relative or a friend meets all of these requirements, they can partner with you to allow you to tap into their credit to access funding.

Business Credit in a Recession

When you apply for the best business line of credit in a recession, consider using your business credit rather than personal credit.  Some lenders will require you to use both.  If you can get a credit line on your business credit only, that is best. If not, strong business credit can help negotiate better terms and rates.

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Not sure what business credit is, if you have it, or how to get it?  Here’s a quick rundown.  Business credit is similar to your personal FICO, but it is for your business only.  It is not attached to your name or social security number, but rather to your business name and EIN.

The most commonly used business credit reporting agency is Dun & Bradstreet, but there are others.  With Dun & Bradstreet however, you must have a DUNS number to have a record with them.  If you do not have one, you don’t have a D&B business credit report.

You can get a free DUNS number on the D&B website.  Before you do, your business must be incorporated.  It also must have dedicated, separate contact information that is not your personal contact information.  You can find out more about incorporation options and how to get a free EIN on the IRS website.

It is Possible to Find the Best Business Line of Credit in a Recession

A business line of credit is a great financing option. It offers flexibility that isn’t always available with a term loan. Interest rates are often better than those offered by business credit cards.  With alternative lenders in the mix, a line of credit is an option for most small businesses even during a recession.

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