Author: Kevin Moore
Federalism is again proving its value in getting shots in arms.
Disclosure: This content is reader-supported, which means if you click on some of our links that we may earn a commission.
In the fight to stay organized, healthcare professionals have an uphill battle.
Billing is more complicated than the human genome.
Government regulations add extra steps to every task.
Decisions are time-sensitive.
Small mistakes can have serious consequences.
On top of all of this, everyone’s busy. There’s no extra time to search for a patient record or reorder an incorrect prescription.
The best electronic medical records (EMR) systems can simplify a lot of the complex challenges today’s providers face.
They are not a silver bullet by any means, but finding a product that works for your practice will make you more efficient today and better prepared for tomorrow.
Here are the top EMR systems that are helping practices improve care, reduce burnout, and make every day less stressful for everyone who walks in the door.
The Top Four Options for EMR Systems
- CareCloud – Best for growing specialty practices
- athenahealth – Best for switching to a new system
- SimplePractice – Best for health and wellness providers
- Kareo – Best for independent practices
The Different Types of EMR Systems
Not so long ago, EMR systems were the tool for turning paper charts into digital resources. They made patient data easier to access and track.
People still need these functions, but today you are going to see very few standalone EMR systems. Instead, you will find EMR systems will come as part of a larger electronic health records (EHR) system.
EMR vs EHR Systems
Here’s the key difference between the two:
- Electronic medical records are a digitized version of a patient’s chart.
- Electronic health records include information from all doctors involved with a patient’s care.
With EMR systems, people within the organization could access a patient’s chart. With EHR systems, on the other hand, medical records can be shared between multiple providers, labs, and insurers.
This ability to share complete EHRs is critical in today’s healthcare environment.
You may already know the reasons why EMR systems are being phased out in favor of EHRs. I’m not going to go in-depth here, though you can certainly read about it if digging into healthcare legislation blows your hair back (see specifically the HITECH Act).
Suffice it to say, new laws and changes in technology have made EHR systems essential.
This can be confusing though.
Many providers still need to digitize and organize the work of their office. EMR systems are perfect for that, and so there’s still a lot of online search for the term.
And because people are asking the internet for EMR systems, you’ll see vendors offering “EMR systems” and directing you to their EHR, or calling their products EMR/EHR solutions.
Some vendors seem to use EHR and EMR interchangeably. Likely, they will continue to do so as long as people are searching for EMRs.
For all the haziness and craziness of the situation, providers who need an EMR system today are really just looking at two major product categories:
- EHR systems
- Practice management suites
Let’s go through both of these so you can figure out which one is going to help you get your practice to where it needs to be.
I’m still going to talk about EMR systems, but just know that it is going to come as part of a solution with a different name.
Electronic Health Records Systems
EHR systems include everything providers need from traditional EMR systems to take their practice online. They can digitize charts, connect them to schedules, and keep each patient visit as efficient as possible.
For practices looking to go paperless, these products can be extremely helpful. They will help you turn file cabinets into searchable digital drives. This saves so much time for doctors, nurses, and staff who can quickly access everything they need from any device.
In addition to tracking patient records, EHR systems help with:
- Lab work and tests
In this sense, an EHR “follows the patient,” giving all parties involved with a patient’s care the information they need to keep the process moving forward.
Most often, you will find EHR software offered as one part of a complete array of tools for managing a practice. Vendors like Kareo and athenahealth offer stand-alone EHR systems, which can be a great starting point for making the transition online.
Practice Management Suites
A practice management suite is designed to centralize all of the administrative, clinical, financial, and legal processes within a single platform.
In addition to EMR/EHR capabilities, they include:
- Advanced reporting
- Patient engagement
- Revenue cycle management
As robust as these solutions are, they are not just for large organizations. In fact, these products work really well in the small practice setting.
With limited staff, solo providers simply don’t have the time to manage 7 or 8 different tools to interact with each patient. Practice management suites are highly customizable, allowing providers to unify and trim down their workflow to its essential elements.
Small practices also benefit from the rich reporting features.
Dashboards and data visualization tools help providers understand trends in clinical data. This can help practices decrease wait times, improve patient engagement, hit regulatory goals, and better manage risk.
How to Choose the Best EMR System for You
The right EMR system provides support for overburdened staff by streamlining critical administrative tasks.
The wrong EMR system can make things worse.
According to a study from the American Medical Association, the average family physician spends 86 minutes per day doing administrative tasks after they leave work.
This so-called “pajama time” has become an awful reality for every physician stuck using a well-intentioned but poorly-performing EMR system.
And it’s not just doctors who are affected by this. Nurses, staff, pharmacists, and—most of all—patients suffer the consequences of inefficient systems.
Just knowing which solutions are popular is not enough. Sometimes a good system is implemented poorly or deployed in a place where it doesn’t fit.
So, how do you pick an EMR system that actually benefits employees and patients?
There’s no easy answer, but by following these three steps you can start to hone in on the right product.
Understand the features you really need
There are an astonishing number of features included with every EMR solution. Most individuals will never use the majority of them.
It’s not surprising, given that these systems are built to work for different types of doctors in a wide variety of clinical settings.
Go into your search with a list of must-have features and functionality. Every product is going to come with digitized charts and patient tracking, but what does that mean for your practice?
In other words, which system has the features that will help receptionists, nurses, doctors, and patients get from A to B? How will each set of features map to your actual patient flows?
A to B is an over-simplification, but also not. One of the most common complaints about EMR systems is that they take too long to accomplish routine tasks.
Ordering a prescription or procedure shouldn’t require scrolling through hundreds of irrelevant options. If a solution includes e-prescribing, ensure that it can be customized to actually save time.
The more A to B tasks your EMR system streamlines, the more time all staff have to spend engaging with patients.
Consider a specialty option
A welcome trend is the growing number of EMR systems tailor-made for specialty practices.
I like these because they solve two problems associated with traditional, general-use EMRs.
One, providers get exactly the tools they need instead of a platform freighted with unnecessary features.
Two, each feature has the appropriate depth for the specialty in question. Laser settings are automatically recorded on charts for dermatologists. Orthopedic surgeons can share large-file imaging results with ease.
Instead of workflows and templates designed for the “textbook clinic,” these products meet the specific needs of today’s specialists.
Prepare for integration and implementation
It’s much easier to deploy an EMR system that integrates with the billing, imaging, and other platforms you use.
Some EMRs centralize those responsibilities within a single platform. If that’s the route you go, what’s it going to be like to move everything from multiple platforms?
The transition from paper to EMR or from one EMR to another is taxing under any circumstances. If the pieces of the puzzle don’t fit together, it can be even worse.
To make the best of a difficult challenge, find a vendor who is willing to help bring data from your existing platform to theirs as part of the deployment.
I definitely recommend reading reviews from actual customers about the kind of service they receive during and after implementation. If you are supposed to get a dedicated service rep, how dedicated are they?
It’s also not 100% on the vendor. What kind of in-house IT support will make everyone’s life easier? Under-budget for this at your own risk.
Upskilling a few “super-user” staff members who can fix issues on the spot will go a long way towards smoothing out the daily frustrations of moving to a new system.
#1 – CareCloud — Best for Growing Specialty Practices
CareCloud is a practice management suite that gives doctors more time to spend with their patients and more resources to invest in their practice.
It unifies the tools providers need to manage every step of the patient relationship in their specific setting. Users can customize charts, reuse order sets, and share content with their colleagues.
The decision support features are quite advanced. This cuts down on the potential for medical errors by immediately flagging issues like dangerous drug combinations and dietary restrictions.
In addition to delivering real-time information at the point of care, quality chart data translates into rich reporting in CareCloud.
Track the performance indicators that matter most, get an instant snapshot of where things stand, and keep an eye on how they evolve.
The EMR and revenue cycle management features work really well together. Providers can use what they discover to improve the quality of patient care and better steward a small practice over financial and regulatory hurdles.
One of the reasons CareCloud works so well is that they offer 24 specialty specific solutions. These deliver tremendous out-of-the-box functionality to providers who would otherwise be stuck configuring their system.
For pain management, physical therapy, podiatry, proctology, pulmonology—and that’s just the p’s—clinicians and physicians can get to work on CareCloud right away.
Some of the highlights of CareCloud include:
- Real-time patient flows
- Patient portal
- Drag-and-drop scheduling
- Quality initiative reporting
- Mobile app
In addition, they make a lot of additional tools available to speciality practices through their Content Store. Find solutions for insurance, billing, scheduling, and record-keeping that are built by other providers in your specific field.
You’ll have to get in touch with CareCloud for pricing, whether you want to use Charts—their EHR module—or the entire practice management platform.
It’s a great option for speciality practices that are looking to grow. CareCloud will streamline every process—from insurance to patient handoffs—because it has everything a specialist needs with none of the bloat.
#2 – athenahealth — Best for Switching to a New System
athenahealth consistently develops trusted healthcare software for hospital systems, small private practices, and everything in between.
They offer a full practice management suite, athenaOne, which provides EHR, billing, patient engagement, population health, care coordination, and epocrates, a best-in-class mobile app.
Alternatively, providers can use athenaClinicals, the EHR component of athenaOne. Their products work well with many other options on the market, so practices don’t have to migrate all their systems at once.
This makes it a great option for practices that see EMR/EHR a key step in the gradual process of future-proofing their entire practice.
One of the biggest draws of athenaClinicals is how easy it is to navigate. It’s a really intelligent platform that is continually auto populating patient data and prioritizing important information.
A lot of the platform’s recommendations come from trends it picks up on in your network, like routine processes and orders. If patients being seen for one treatment are often prescribed a certain medication, it will be right there without any search required.
Stop struggling with ever-changing procedure codes and insurance protocols. athenahealth monitors federal quality programs and makes best practices available immediately.
Some of the other standout features include:
- Secure voice, text, and email reminders
- Patient portal
- Decision support
- Rich reporting
- Mobile app
- App marketplace
Even though the user interface is great, there is a learning curve because the platform is so deep. In other words, the control that makes athenahealth such a great long-term solution requires a little getting used to in the short term.
I think it’s worth it, because it’s the last tool staff will ever have to learn.
The platform has proven itself capable of handling the most challenging healthcare IT environments.
Never switch again.
The cost of athenahealth’s integrated suite is based on a percentage of monthly collections. The idea is that they partner with your practice instead of locking you in a contract and charging for upgrades.
They do well if you do well. Many companies report that the increased efficiency with billing and collections offsets the costs almost entirely, to say nothing of its impact across the practice.
athena’s customer support has a solid reputation and they have a lot of experience helping clients move their data over securely.
If you are stuck on paper or with a system that’s not getting it done, athenahealth will do what it takes to make you their next satisfied member.
#3 – SimplePractice — Best for Health and Wellness Providers
SimplePractice is an affordable practice management suite that’s delivering value to therapists, dieticians, social workers, and other providers in the mental health and wellness space.
It’s a great price for small clinics and private practices that want to centralize charts, notes, appointments, insurance, and billing in one intuitive platform.
There’s a patient portal, so both sides benefit from the accessibility. Clients can upload documents and even book their own appointments (on your terms, of course).
Speaking of accessible, SimplePractice empowers providers to meet with their clients, regardless of where they are coming from, or ability to come in.
Every consultation can be managed securely online, thanks to features like paperless intakes, online booking, and HIPAA-compliant telehealth solutions.
Not every community has the local resources in place to serve those who need care. And even when patients have a nearby office, taking time to come in for appointments can still pose problems.
SimplePractice can help providers stay in touch with clients, no matter how busy or far away they are.
It’s great for an entire practice, but focusing in on the EMR features, SimplePractice comes with:
- Template library
- Diagnosis and treatment plans
- Searchable ICD-10 codes
- Secure text messaging
- Appointment reminders
- Mobile App
There’s also customizable patient intake forms and surveys, which allow providers to ask questions in the right way. They can be sensitive, specific, and leave enough room for people to share their thoughts.
They offer plans for solo practices starting at $39/month.
Group practice rates start at $98/month for 2 clinicians. Each additional user costs $39/month.
Features like telehealth and billing are extra charges, as they are with other platforms. On SimplePractice, however, the added costs are transparent—$10/month per user for telehealth and electronic claim filing starts at 25¢ per claim.
Practices that don’t need these features, or use something else, aren’t stuck paying, and those that need them have a predictable cost at the end of the month.
Predictable, affordable, and complete. That’s SimplePractice. Try it free for 30 days.
Their Switching Team will help you import everything and live support is included with every plan.
#4 – Kareo — Best for Independent Practices
Kareo is an all-in-one solution for practice management that’s designed to meet the particular needs of an independent practice.
This is their focus. You never have to worry about competing with massive hospitals for their attention.
Kareo isn’t hospital software that’s been pared down. The platform is a simple set of three integrated modules: Clinical, Billing, and Engage.
There aren’t a million components to get the complete system and, more importantly, each part works fine on its own.
If a company just needs a dependable EHR, for example, Kareo Clinical has everything they need.
Charts are easy to read with space for notes. They feel simple, despite the wealth of information you can add. Kareo is optimized for all screen sizes, letting providers prescribe a medication or create a bill in minutes from any device.
The e-prescribing features save providers time and patients money. With Kareo’s integrated prescription discounts, doctors can compare prices and find savings for their patients.
They have a lot of great templates and forms that can be customized quickly, plus “same-as-last-time” features that streamline routine documentation.
Other helpful tools include:
- Patient portal
- Customizable dashboards
- Secure messaging
- Decision support
- Rich reporting
- App marketplace
Kareo flowsheets are one of the most useful reporting features, showing doctors a patient’s key vitals and lab results over time. This makes it easier to analyze progress and track several aspects of a patient’s health at once.
None of these great features take long to master. There are self-service online resources like Kareo University, which many users find helpful.
But you are not on your own. After you sign up, they provide a free Kareo success coach for the first 60 days who will help with transferring and digitizing files.
Their customer support is available via phone, email, and chat to answer all those insurance billing questions.
For independent practices that want an efficient, simple way to manage medical records, Kareo Clinical is going to overperform.
Providing quality care is hard.
That’s the root of the problem when it comes to finding a workable EMR system. Often, people put off switching to a better system because it’s such a pain.
Kareo and athenahealth do a lot to make the process easier. Independent practices should opt for Kareo because it’s built to fit their needs. For everyone else, athenahealth is a dependable long-term solution no matter how their practice evolves over time.
Looking at speciality practices, CareCloud is going to be the easiest to get up and running. So much of the backend organization has been done already. Templates and forms are ready to go and you don’t have to sort through irrelevant options.
For those working in the health and wellness space, SimplePractice is a perfect platform. It’s got competitive, predictable pricing and a rich set of features designed to nurture the most sensitive patient relationships.
Disclosure: This content is reader-supported, which means if you click on some of our links that we may earn a commission.
It’s no secret that the ecommerce industry has been booming. As those trends continue to climb, the dropshipping market is following the same trajectory.
Dropshipping makes it possible for anyone to run an ecommerce shop without having to purchase, store, or ship inventory. Essentially, you can operate an ecommerce site from your couch without ever touching the products you’re selling.
But in order to do this successfully, you’ll need to find a dropshipping company to handle the logistics of fulfilling orders.
Whether you have an existing ecommerce business or you’re new to selling online, this guide will help you find the best dropshipping company for your unique needs. Continue below to learn more about my top recommendations and strategy for evaluating different options.
The Top 7 Options For Dropshipping Companies
How to Choose the Best Dropshipping Company For You
There are hundreds, if not thousands of different dropshipping companies on the market today. Without a buying guide to follow, narrowing down your options can seem like an insurmountable task. To make your life easier, follow the methodology that I’ve outlined below.
These are the factors that you should take into consideration as you’re researching and evaluating different dropshipping solutions:
Type of Dropshipping Company
Dropshipping companies come in all different shapes and sizes. So the first thing you need to do is determine what type of company will meet the requirements for your business.
Do you need a manufacturer? Wholesale supplier? Supplier directory? In some instances, you might just be looking for dropshipping software to facilitate your existing supplier relationship.
We’ll cover the types of dropshipping companies in greater detail shortly. This will give you a more detailed explanation of your options.
Next, you need to make sure that the company you’re considering supports your sales platform. It’s worth noting that not all dropshipping solutions are compatible with every ecommerce website.
For example, online stores using Shopify won’t necessarily be using the same dropshipping company as a business selling via eBay or Amazon. A brick-and-mortar retailer that wants to add an online sales channel won’t have the same needs as new business selling via Wix or WooCommerce.
So verifying the compatibility between your online sales channel and the dropshipping company’s logistics will be a great way to narrow down your choices.
In addition to the logistical benefits of dropshipping, you’ll also have access to wholesale rates. But like any type of inventory, those prices will vary from supplier to supplier.
Some dropshipping companies force you to pay a monthly or annual membership for access to wholesale pricing. In many cases, these membership fees are well-worth the discounts you’ll get as a result. But usually, the manufacturers will offer the best rates if you buy directly through them.
You’ll have to walk the line between what makes sense for your convenience vs. profit margins.
Industry and Products
What products are you selling? What are you planning to sell online?
The answer to these questions will definitely impact the dropshipping company you choose. If you’re selling shirts and hats, you probably won’t have the same dropshipping needs as an online store that sells computers, headphones, and other electronics.
Are you selling brand name products? Or will you be putting your own logo on inventory?
These are other questions to consider as you’re evaluating prospective solutions.
The best dropshipping companies leverage automation, which allows you to be as hands-off as possible.
You need to understand the logistics between how orders get processed from company to company. What happens after a customer buys something online? How does that order ultimately end up at their doorstep? The answer varies depending on the solution you choose.
In some cases, you’ll have to manually enter those order details from your own website to the dropshipping platform. But with an automated process, you won’t have to do anything. An online order will automatically be sent to the supplier without any extra steps on your end.
For those of you who already have relationships with suppliers, you can leverage dropshipping software to automate your fulfillment process.
Quality and Speed
Even though you’re not touching the products with dropshipping, your company is still responsible for the product itself.
The customer doesn’t care where the product came from or who shipped it. They expect high-quality products delivered quickly. If the dropshipping company you’re using takes weeks to ship and delivers defective products, it’s going to be a poor reflection of your company—not theirs.
So choose a company with an established reputation in this space. You might have to pay a little extra for the inventory, but it’s worth it to keep your customers satisfied.
The Different Types of Dropshipping Companies
As previously mentioned, there are different categories within the dropshipping space. Here’s a quick overview that explains each type of dropshipping company. This will make it easier for you to determine which type addresses what your business is looking for.
A dropshipping marketplace is an online platform with a network of different dropshipping companies. You’ll be able to facilitate your entire operation and manage the relationships between different dropshippers from a single place.
This is a great option for ecommerce shops that plan to sell products in different categories sourced from multiple suppliers. It’s also a great way to shop around and evaluate different companies from a single source of truth.
Going straight to the manufacturer is one of the best ways to get the lowest possible whole inventory prices—you won’t be going through a third-party.
However, not every manufacturer will be set up to facilitate dropshipping out of the gate. So you might need to use dropshipping software to manage this relationship. Another downside of using a manufacturer is that you’ll be limited to what that manufacturer produces. If you want to sell products that they don’t make, you’ll need to source them from a different manufacturer. At scale, this can be tough to manage.
A wholesale supplier doesn’t necessarily manufacture products. But they operate warehouses with inventory from various manufacturers.
The prices from a wholesale supplier will still be low, but definitely not as low compared to coming directly from the manufacturer (the wholesaler has to take a cut). These dropshipping companies are great for businesses that want to sell a wide range of different products in various categories.
Supplier directories don’t actually handle dropshipping. Similar to an online marketplace, it’s a single location for you to find various suppliers.
But to access information about these suppliers and prices, you usually have to pay a membership fee to the directory.
Dropshipping software is a great way for online stores to automate order fulfillment with their suppliers and manufacturers. These tools eliminate the need for ecommerce shops to manually enter order details after something is purchased through their online sales channels.
With dropshipping software, the order information gets sent directly to the supplier for fulfillment. This is faster, more efficient, reduces human error, and allows the site operators to stay more hands-off.
#1 – Doba Review — The Most Versatile Dropshipping Company
Doba is one of the most popular dropshipping services on the market today. Its popularity is largely due to the fact that it can accommodate such a wide range of ecommerce shops with varying needs.
With Doba, you’ll have access to millions of products from hundreds of suppliers in a single online catalog. Here’s how it works:
Other noteworthy highlights of Doba include:
- Compatible with 100+ ecommerce platforms including Shopify, Magento, BigCommerce, Volusion, eBay, Amazon, etc.
- Information on each supplier (average processing time, fulfillment rates, cost, etc.)
- Manage product lists and discover trending products
- Advanced search and filtering
- Data exports in a wide range of formats
- Inventory management tools
- Proactive inventory and price change alerts
Plans start at $29 per month. If you sign up for an annual subscription, you’ll get two months for free. Try it free for 30 days.
#2 – Wholesale2b Review — Best Free and Simple Dropshipping Company
More than one million products are available on Wholesale2b. The platform makes it easy for anyone to integrate dropshippers to their online store.
Wholesale2b is compatible with multiple sales channels and online marketplaces like Amazon, WooCommerce, Shopify, BigCommerce, Ecwid, eBay, Magento, and more.
Here are some of the top reasons why Wholesale2b ranks so high on my list:
- Free to sign up; no credit card required
- Easy to get started
- Extensive product catalog with options from multiple categories and industries
- 100+ dropshippers in the Wholesale2b network
- Automatic order imports and inventory tracking
- Ability to create a new turnkey ecommerce site from scratch
Whether you have an existing online store you’re planning to start a new ecommerce business, Wholesale2b has you covered. Sign up and try it today—it’s free.
#3 – Oberlo Review — The Best For Shopify Stores
If you’re using Shopify to sell online, look no farther than Oberlo. The platform integrates seamlessly with your Shopify store, so you can start dropshipping with ease.
More than 100 million products have been sold online with Oberlo.
Oberlo is free for basic use, but you’ll definitely want to upgrade to a paid plan, or you’ll be limited with what you can accomplish. Some of the top features include:
- Unlimited monthly orders
- Free Oberlo Chrome extension
- Bulk orders
- Real-time order tracking
- Variant mapping
- CAPTCHA solver
- Ebooks, guides, and free learning tools
- 24/7 customer support
- Customizable listing information
- Powerful product data
Paid plans start at $29.90 per month. This entry-level plan supports up to 10,000 products. You can join Oberlo for free to get started.
#4 – Megagoods Review — The Best For Consumer Electronics
Megagoods is my top recommendation for online retailers in the consumer electronics space.
They provide fast shipping, efficient processing, and have a great selection of brand name electronics products.
Here are some of the most popular product categories offered through the Megagoods platform:
- Alarm clocks
- Car audio
- Home theaters
- DVD players
- DJ products
- Bluetooth products
- PA systems
- Portable electronics
- Gaming products
In addition to the extensive electronics options, Megagoods also supplies items like watches, kitchen appliances, cutlery, cookware sets, and more.
The interface is a little outdated, but a Megagoods subscription costs just $14.99 per month. This membership fee gives you access to exclusive pricing. Try it free for 30 days.
#5 – SaleHoo Review — The Best Wholesale Directory
SaleHoo is one of the most popular wholesaler directory platforms on the market today. A membership grants you access to 2.5+ million products from 8,000+ suppliers.
With SaleHoo, you can find products and start selling them online in a matter of minutes.
For 15+ years, more than 137,000 people have used SaleHoo to sell online with dropshipping services. Here are some other reasons why they come so highly recommended:
- All suppliers have been pre-vetted
- Unlimited dropshipping training
- Award-winning customer support
- Plans are backed by a 60-day money-back guarantee
- Market research tools for hot products and high profit margins
- Easy to navigate with a modern interface
- Ability to automate your online store
Annual pricing for the SaleHoo supplier directory costs $67. Alternatively, you can pay a one-time fee of $127 for lifetime access. Try it risk-free.
#6 – Dropified Review — The Best For eBay Sourcing
Dropified is another popular dropshipping solution. It seamlessly integrates with ecommerce platforms like Shopify, WooCommerce, BigCommerce, and more.
Unlike other dropshipping tools, Dropfied is also compatible with eBay and AliExpress.
If you’re using eBay or AliExpress for inventory, Dropfied eliminates the need to copy and paste customer order details. These orders can automatically be shipped to your customers directly from the supplier.
Other top features and perks of using Dropfied include:
- Automatic order fulfillment
- Automatic price change updates
- Dynamic Facebook feeds
- Automatic product availability updates
- Simple product variant setups
- Easy product filtering
- Product and inventory sync
- Add to your ecommerce store with a single click
- Product customization
- Automatically import product reviews from vendors
- Easy to change vendors for different products
This list of features and benefits goes on and on. It’s quite extensive, to say the least. Dropified plans start at $47 per month. The entry-level plan supports 15,000 products and unlimited monthly orders. Try it free for 14 days.
#7 – Inventory Source — Best Dropshipping Automation Software
Inventory Source is a bit unique compared to other dropshipping companies on our list. They provide software to facilitate dropshipping automation.
To improve the logistics with your existing suppliers, Inventory Source will be a great option for you to consider.
Here’s why I like Inventory Source so much:
- Integrates with 25+ ecommerce platforms (Shopify, eBay, Amazon, Walmart, Magento, WooCommerce, 3dcart, etc.)
- Full product data integration
- Dropship order automation
- Automatic inventory sync
- Free directory of 230+ suppliers
- Ability to add your own suppliers outside of the Inventory Source directory
- Bulk feed management tools
Overall, the software is really easy to set up. It will benefit you and your suppliers alike. Plans start at $99 per month. You can create an account for free to browse supplier product feeds, automation tools, and integrations.
The concept of dropshipping is extremely appealing for anyone interested in selling online. But it only works well if you’re using the right dropshipping company.
Which dropshipping company is the best? It depends on your needs.
Just use the recommendations and buying guide explained in this post to find the best dropshipping services for your online store.
Her appellate-court opinions on gun rights and regulatory power are models of careful originalism.
A mask mandate aside, Trump is already doing what Joe recommends.
Paid advertising offers a 200% ROI. So for every dollar you spend, you get two dollars in return. It’s no surprise that nearly 80% of marketers consider PPC profitable and beneficial for their businesses.
But it’s not as easy as throwing ads up, seeing what sticks, and hoping people buy from you.
There’s a reason PPC agencies exist — managing countless moving parts, and continuous algorithm updates take time. Plus… none of those things are easy to stay on top of, either.
To make matters worse, choosing the best PPC company for your business presents a new set of challenges. So in this article, I cover my top recommendations, characteristics to look for, and what to expect working with an agency.
Let’s get started!
The 5 top PPC companies in the world
PPC is an exciting type of digital marketing because you can quickly and directly evaluate your investment return.
But whether you’re an excellent PPC manager looking to outsource or have no experience running pay per click advertising campaigns, choosing the right PPC agency isn’t always straightforward.
So to help you out, I put together this list of my top recommendations for different types of businesses.
Let’s dive in!
1. Neil Patel Digital — Best data-driven multi-channel PPC agency
Ads in search engine results aren’t the only type of PPC advertising.
Other examples include social media, programmatic, and Amazon, each with their own set of quirks and best practices.
At Neil Patel Digital, we specialize in running multi-channel PPC campaigns using first-party data from our partners. Furthermore, we take this information and use it to create strategic, high-profit campaigns that meet your audience where they are.
All while helping those in your audience make an informed decision to buy.
We’ve helped companies like Intuit, GM, and Facebook make more money authentically, using our data-driven approach to digital marketing.
2. Directive Consulting — Best for B2B, SaaS, and enterprise businesses
If you’re a B2B, SaaS, or enterprise business looking for consulting services or a dedicated PPC management partner, Directive Consulting is an excellent option.
They specialize in helping software companies around the world run high-ROI campaigns with a dedicated team running and optimizing things behind the scenes.
Directive Consulting says one of their key differentiators is the predictability of their results.
They prove it by showcasing numerous case studies outlining their results. In one example, they facilitated a 91.1% increase in lead generation in the first three months on top of decreasing their client’s cost-per-lead by 21.8%.
So you can rest assured that you’re in good hands.
3. Stryde — Best for B2C and eCommerce businesses
B2C pay per click campaigns are vastly different from B2B campaigns. With different markets and trends, it’s essential to understand your industry’s specific ins and outs.
And who better to do that than an agency specializing in eCommerce?
Stryde is an eCommerce-specific digital marketing agency working with small and large companies all over the world.
They helped Lime Ricke, a swimwear brand, achieve a 5.2x ROI. Furthermore, they helped Lucy Ave, a women’s clothing company, obtain a 4.3 ROI.
With repeatable and impressive results like these (and others outlined in their extensive portfolio), you know you’re making a smart choice.
4. Loud Mouth Media — Best small agency producing big results
If you’re looking for an expert partner in search advertising or paid social, Loud Mouth Media has your back. They’re a small agency based in the UK specializing in PPC (specifically paid search and social) campaigns for businesses of all sizes.
Loud Mouth Media is partnered with Google, Bing, and Facebook as well. So you know they’re always up-to-date with the latest trends and research across those platforms.
They’re a small team of 23 expert marketers, creatives, and strategists producing impressive results for companies of all sizes around the world.
And with numerous digital marketing awards under their belt and past clients like Volvo and BBC, their credentials and portfolio make them stand out as the best small PPC agency producing massive results.
5. KlientBoost — Best for PPC management + landing page design
Strong PPC campaigns go beyond excellent ad copy, design, and targeting. Where you send your targeted traffic matters.
Which… is why it’s crucial to have well-designed landing pages optimized to convert visitors into leads or customers. At KlientBoost, they understand the importance of conversion-focused landing pages.
Their in-house team of developers, conversion designers, and top-notch marketers gives them the power to design excellent customer experiences from start to finish.
They’ve produced repeatable results like:
- 300% conversion rate increase for Juniper Networks
- 315% increase in click-through rates for Lemon Stand
- 97% decrease in cost-per-acquisition for Caresync
So, if you’re looking for a bit of help optimizing your landing pages and a dedicated PPC advertising team to target the right people and turn them into buyers, KlientBoost is for you.
7 characteristics that make a great PPC company
Now you know my top PPC recommendations based on what you need.
Let’s move on to what makes these PPC companies the best at what they do. We’ll also walk through what to look for on your hunt for the best option for your business.
1. Extensive industry knowledge
The best PPC campaigns focus on the right audiences and the right keywords. But not all audience segments or keywords are equal.
Understanding what works and what doesn’t comes from experience and in-depth industry knowledge. Without the two of those, you’re banking on intuition.
Which… works sometimes, but that’s not what you should expect from a top PPC agency.
Take a look at who’s a part of the agency’s team and take some time to evaluate their experience level and expertise in your specific industry.
You can also look at their published case studies in different industries to see the types of results they produce for their clients.
If you’re not confident in their knowledge in your industry, move on to an agency that feels like a better fit.
2. Advanced analytics and reporting
Analytics and reporting are essential aspects of any PPC campaign.
They help you get a better understanding of what segments and copy work well to shift your budget toward high-profit ads while reducing ad spend on those that don’t work.
So your PPC agency must provide accurate and transparent reporting, so you always know where every dollar goes and the ROI it produces.
Furthermore, top PPC agencies aim to collect as much information as possible regarding everything about your campaign.
This insight helps them to adapt and produce higher ROI campaigns with first-party data directly from your business.
You may not be able to find out much about this from an agency’s website. So it’s important to ask questions regarding the data and metrics they measure to influence their suggestions and future campaign strategies.
3. Intent-driven keyword selection
The top PPC marketers know the best way to improve ROIs and reduce wasted ad spend is by focusing on transactional keywords rather than informational keywords for paid search marketing.
Why? Because people searching for transactional terms are more likely to spend money.
And good PPC strategists know this is the best way to get your business in front of the right people at the right time without wasting ad spend on irrelevant terms that aren’t going to turn into purchases.
You may have a hard time learning about this from their website. So be sure to ask questions and gauge their knowledge around intent-based search queries before moving forward.
4. First-party data sources and strategic partnerships
Search engines and social media platforms are continually updating their algorithms to be as human as possible to provide the best experience for their users.
So the best PPC companies to partner with are on top of these continuous changes.
Search and social partnerships provide those deep insights and industry trends non-partners don’t have.
Furthermore, agencies with a pool of first-party data sources have a first-hand look at your audience’s attributes and behavior to make strategic decisions regarding your campaign before using your ad spend to test the market.
Look for partnership badges for major search engines and social media platforms on their website. You can also look for an indication of first-party data sources.
5. Mobile optimization
Fifteen years ago, mobile browsing and searching weren’t around. But today, mobile devices account for more than 50% of all searches made around the world.
But there’s something else a bit more interesting. Mobile devices account for 53% of paid clicks, which means there’s a huge opportunity (and need) to optimize your paid search strategy for mobile.
On top of that, there are nearly 3.5 million mobile social media users across the globe. So the opportunity for mobile-optimized paid social media campaigns is massive as well.
This makes an excellent case for mobile PPC campaigns. And the best PPC companies know this. So make sure the company you choose is prepared to strategize and optimize your campaigns for mobile devices.
You may have to ask questions if you can’t find this information on their website.
And if you’re not confident in their mobile capabilities, move on to a different PPC agency.
6. Local PPC capabilities
90% of shoppers turn to search engines when looking for information on local businesses, and 33% perform these types of searches every day.
So if your business operates in specific areas or you have a physical location to sell products or meet with potential customers, local paid search experience and capabilities are must-haves.
Some PPC agencies specialize in local PPC, but that doesn’t mean those that don’t can’t produce impressive results.
So be sure to ask questions to ensure you’re a good fit for each other.
7. Multi-channel PPC services
If you’re looking for a specific type of PPC marketing, this isn’t necessarily a deal-breaker.
But if you’re interested in cross-channel marketing, it’s easier to run all your campaigns through a single agency.
And the more you work with them, the more in-tune they become with your business, industry, and specific campaign goals. Plus, you have the benefit of communicating and coordinating with one agency rather than managing several at the same time.
Furthermore, you don’t have to worry about misaligned messaging from one platform to the next.
So carefully consider where your target audience hangs out. Don’t forget to consider search engines, social media, paid shopping, and programmatic advertising on sites they frequently visit.
Then, choose a PPC agency experienced in those areas.
What to expect from a great PPC company
If you’ve never worked with a PPC company before, it’s hard to know what to expect. So now that you know what to look for let’s talk about what working with one of the best PPC companies looks like.
The details of each phase look different depending on the company you’re working with, but the general approach is typically the same.
Phase 1: Discovery
The best PPC companies do everything they can to learn everything there is to know about your business and what you’re looking for. So, the first step to any new PPC project is discovery and onboarding.
During this phase, you and your agency should hash out:
- Your budget (including monthly ad spend)
- The goals for your PPC campaign
- What makes your business different from your competitors
- How to improve your landing pages to increase conversions
- Specific details about your business and target audience like where they hang out online, when they tend to shop, and where they live
- What happens next
This is your chance to share everything you can possibly think of with your PPC agency. Even if it doesn’t feel relevant, it may be crucial to your success. So come into this phase as an open book with an open mind.
Phase 2: Planning and testing
This phase may also include running a small, low-budget pilot campaign to test different audience segments, copy, and overall execution.
So, the more information you know about your target audience, the easier this will be.
By the end of this stage, you’ll have a plan in place for full-scale execution and a deeper understanding of how you’re going to work together moving forward.
Phase 3: Full-scale execution
Now it’s time to launch the full campaign. The specifics of this depend on the type of advertising and the agency you’re working with.
Your project could be short-term, long-term, or ongoing. But during this time, you should get regular feedback and thorough reporting outlining everything about your campaign.
And when your campaign comes to a close, you should have a clear picture of your results.
Phase 4: Next steps
Lastly, your agency will walk you through the data they collected and explain what everything means. They’ll also probably provide suggestions and feedback on what they can improve if you want to continue working together.
This stage should also cover what happens next.
Strategy + creative + the right audience segments = high ROI
Hiring a top PPC company is a smart choice if you’re looking to save time, strategize with experts in your industry, and enjoy short-term results (when compared to something like SEO).
But choosing a PPC agency you can trust is harder than it sounds.
So whether you’re looking for advice or someone to take over and manage your campaigns, use these tips and recommendations when making your decision.
Do you have any experience vetting and hiring a PPC agency? What criteria did you consider when making your decision?
The Internet-based market of the cash advance funding sector started in the 1990’s, when the CAN-SPAM Act really did not yet exist. When the CAN-SPAM Act of 2003 ended up being truth, the on the internet cash advance financing sector took notification.
The objective of CAN-SPAM, brief for Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography as well as Marketing Act was to establish criteria for comparing emails that are genuine and also those which are SPAM. The sending out of SPAM protests the regulation. Because the Act relates to all services that utilize e-mail in their procedures, a lot of payday loan providers discovered themselves requiring to comprehend this brand-new regulation that laid out extreme repercussions consisting of fines as well as prison.
On the internet cash advance financing as well as the CAN-SPAM Act
The CAN-SPAM Act defines standards for utilizing e-mail addresses for the function of sending out and also obtaining digitally sent advertising products. It is a substantial act, as well as right here are several of the fundamentals.
Of all, the Act restricts the sending out of unwanted e-mail. New on the internet cash advance financing sites are emerging each day and also each is completing hard to guide the focus of the masses in its very own instructions. Mass emailing messages with fancy ads as well as marked down deals is a preferred method to guide brand-new clients to this financially rewarding organisation.
One means to identify a great on-line cash advance loaning company from the “poor” ones is by never ever concurring to do service with a payday advance loan firm that sends you unrequested business e-mail. Any kind of reputable business would certainly never ever deliberately go against the CAN-SPAM Act so you would certainly need to question the authenticity of a payday advance loan business that would purposefully do so.
The CAN-SPAM Act additionally specifies that the details in subject lines as well as e-mail headers should not to be misstated. Go in advance and also do so if you locate on your own the eager recipient of advertising and marketing from an on-line cash advance offering firm as well as you are attracted to react to the email. That firm can be in infraction of the CAN-SPAM Act if the details to which you reacted transforms out to be deceptive or wrong
Select on the internet cash advance borrowing services that abide by the CAN-SPAM Act.
One more area of the CAN-SPAM Act specifies that any type of e-mail message you obtain need to consist of an opt-out web link. If the e-mail does not have such opt-out chance, the on-line cash advance financing organisation is breaking the CAN-SPAM Act.
Despite the fact that the majority of on the internet cash advance loaning services are reputable, some aren’t. The CAN-SPAM Act aids extract the negative on the internet cash advance loaning firms so you do not need to.
The Internet-based market of the cash advance lending market started in the 1990’s, when the CAN-SPAM Act really did not yet exist. When the CAN-SPAM Act of 2003 ended up being truth, the on-line cash advance loaning sector took notification.
Considering that the Act uses to all services that make use of e-mail in their procedures, many payday loan providers discovered themselves requiring to comprehend this brand-new regulation that laid out extreme effects consisting of fines and also prison.
One more area of the CAN-SPAM Act specifies that any type of e-mail message you get should consist of an opt-out web link. If the e-mail does not have such opt-out chance, the on the internet cash advance loaning organisation is breaking the CAN-SPAM Act.
Work Taxes– What Are They? If you have staff members, you are in charge of paying a range of tax obligations at the government, state, and also regional degrees. You have to likewise keep specific tax obligations from the incomes of your staff members. What are work tax obligations? Work tax obligations consist of the …
There is no startup capital genie that lives in a bottle. You can’t hope to find the magic lamp, rub it, and make all your entrepreneurial dreams come true. In contrast, finding startup capital is just the first hurdle in a line of many that you will have to jump over to get your business off the ground. Startup capital can come from a variety of sources. It takes hard work and some creativity, not to mention determination, to find the best start up capital option for you.
Startup Capital Doesn’t Come from a Genie in a Bottle
Don’t let that scare you though. Start up capital loans are highly attainable. However, your chances of success are much, much greater if you know exactly what to do, where to do it, and you have the right tools.
For example, you can’t build a house while sitting in a library with scissors and tape. When it comes to starting a business, especially in our current corona economy, you need the right tools. One tool you cannot do without is startup capital. However, you need to know where to look for startup business loans and what you have to do to get them. At least, that’s where you start.
Check out our best webinar with its trustworthy list of seven vendors to help you build business credit.
Startup Capital: Self-Funding
For most, this seems like the obvious best option. If you have the means, it can be for sure. No debt is always good. Still, even if you have the means to fund startup capital yourself, you may not want to tie up all that cash. Alternatively, you may not want to dip into your retirement or savings, though those are definitely possibilities. Which leads us to the other options.
Startup Capital: Investors
There was a time when investors were simply that, traditional investors. There are two new players in the field these days however, and they are significantly less formal.
Investopedia defines angel investors as those who “… invest in small startups or entrepreneurs. Often, angel investors are among an entrepreneur’s family and friends. The capital angel investors provide may be a one-time investment to help the business propel or an ongoing injection of money to support and carry the company through its difficult early stages.”
Usually, they do not lend to the same person twice, even if that person pays them as agreed. That’s because they like to spread their risk over a lot of people and businesses to make sure they earn a profit. They are also usually a lot less formal than most types of funding. An angel investor can be anyone. Seriously, it could be your mom or someone you met through networking.
The best way to find these kinds of angel investors is to ask people you know. Also, you can try an angel investors website or network. For example, Gust keeps a database of investors, companies, and programs. Startups can search for business plan competitions and other opportunities.
This is an increasingly popular option for startup capital.
Basically, Crowdfunding is a type of investment option. The thing is, you get a lot of smaller investments from a lot of people. Hence the term, crowdfunding. This is in contrast to getting the bulk of your small business funding from one or two larger investors. Still, not every campaign is successful. Trully, few are.
Startup Capital: SBA Loans
These are small-business loans guaranteed by the Small Business Administration. Participating lenders, mostly banks, distribute the funds. They can guarantee up to 85% of loans of $150,000 or less, and loans that are more than $150,000 they will guarantee up to 75%. The maximum loan amount they offer is $5 million.
Since they have a government guarantee, financial institutions are able to offer these loans at lower interest rates.
To be eligible for SBA Loans, you must meet certain qualifications. These include:
- Your business must be for profit.
- Your business must be inside the US.
- Business owners must invest equity.
- You must have exhausted all other financing options.
- Your business must qualify as a small business.
- Your business must be in an eligible industry.
Best SBA Loan Programs for Startup Capital
There are a ton of loan programs available through The Small Business Administration. These are those that are best suited for startup capital.
Check out our best webinar with its trustworthy list of seven vendors to help you build business credit.
This is the Small Business Administration’s most popular loan program. For one, it offers federally funded term loans up to $5 million. Furthermore, the funds can be used for expansion, purchasing equipment, working capital and more. Banks, credit unions, and other specialized institutions, in partnership with the SBA, process these funds.
Loans are available up to $5 million. Funds can buy machinery, facilities, or land. Mostly, they are for expansion. Private sector lenders or nonprofits process and disburse these loans. They especially work well for commercial real estate purchases.
Up to $50,000 is available through the microloan program. This money can be for starting a business, purchasing equipment, buying inventory, or for working capital. Community based nonprofits handle microloan programs as intermediaries. In contrast, financing comes directly from the Small Business Administration.
Startup Capital: Private Lenders
Generally, private lenders can be a little more relaxed with requirements. Yet, they also tend to have higher interest rates and less favorable terms.
They usually have options for all types of financings at varying rates. There are a ton out there, but here are a few to get you started if you need to go this route for small business funding.
Upstart is an online lender using innovative new technology. They question whether financial information and FICO alone can really determine the risk associated with a specific borrower. Instead, they are using a combination of machine learning and AI to gather alternative data. They then use this data to make credit decisions.
This alternative data includes things such as phone bills, rent, deposits, withdrawals, and even other information that is not directly tied to finances. Software from the company learns and improves based on this data.
They offer various types of financing products to fit a wide variety of needs. This may include credit card refinancing, student loans, and pretty much anything in-between. Upstart has something for almost everyone.
StreetShares began as a service to veterans. Now, they offer term loans, lines of credit, and contract financing. In addition, they offer small business loan investment options. The maximum loan amount is $250,000. Pre-Approval only takes a few minutes. They use a soft pull on your credit so as not to affect your score.
StreetShares eligibility requirements include being in business for at least 12 months with annual revenue of $25,000. Exceptions do exist however. Loans to companies in business for at least 6 months that have higher earnings can be approved on a case by case basis.
Kabbage is a well known online lender. They offer a small business line of credit that can help businesses accomplish business goals quickly. The minimum loan amount is $500 and the maximum is $250,000. They require you to be in business for at least one year and have $50,000 or more in annual revenue. Alternatively, $4,200 or more per month in the previous 3 month period will meet the revenue requirement..
Kabbage is great if you need cash quickly. Also, their non-traditional approach puts less weight on your credit score, so they may work better for some borrowers than other lenders.
Fundation provides both term business loans online and lines of credit. It is most known for its working capital funding options. These are funds meant to help cover the day-to-day costs of running a business rather than larger projects. Typically, these funds come in the form of a line-of-credit.
Their minimum loan amount Fundation offers is $20,000 while the maximum loan amount is $500,000. They require you to be in business for at least 12 months and have annual revenue of at least $100,000. To be eligible, your personal credit score must be no less than 600. Additionally, you must have at least 3 full time employees. That number can include yourself. Business owners cannot live or operate their business in North Dakota, South Dakota, or Nevada.
You Cannot Get Startup Capital Without a Business Plan
Not only is a business plan necessary when it comes to getting business loans, but it is necessary to the day to day operations of your business as well. Virtually all successful entrepreneurs will tell you that a major key to success is to plan to work and work the plan.
Most traditional lenders are going to need to see a business plan as part of the loan application process. Truthfully, it’s best to hire a professional business plan writer if possible. They can work with you to get all the necessary information and put it together in the traditional format.
If you cannot hire a business plan writer however, there are other options. The Small Business Administration offers a template. Furthermore, your local small business development center may also be able to help.
For a business plan to be taken seriously by a lender, it needs to include the following:
A Strong Opening
An Executive Summary
This is a complete summary of the business idea.
The description goes into further detail than the summary, describing the business. This is where you work to build excitement about your business.
Check out our best webinar with its trustworthy list of seven vendors to help you build business credit.
Layout your plan for getting started. Do you have a marketing plan, area in mind for location, or idea of how many employees you will start with? What is your ramp up plan?
What need will your business fill, and for who? Are you a child care facility filling a need for affordable child care for working moms? Are you an eatery filling a need for a lunch spot for those working downtown? How will your business fill the need? All of that information goes in this section.
Is there already a business working to fill this need? Is there room for more? How do you plan to compete with them?
If you are not a new business, this will be a market analysis that supports your need for funding, or that shows your business is strong and growing.
Plan for Design and Development
How is all of this going to play out, from start to finish. What steps are you going to take? This is more detailed than your strategies section.
Plan for Operation and Management
Who will own or does own the business and who will run or currently runs it from day to day. This could be as simple as stating that you are the sole owner and operator, or as complicated as laying out a complete partnership plan or board or directors’ format. It just depends on how your business works.
This section includes current financials, projections, and a budget plan for the loan funds you are applying for. Lenders need to see that you know how to handle the funds you get, and that you have a plan to pay them back.
Now is the Time to Build Fundability
The real key to getting startup capital and being able to get working capital whenever you need it is fundability. However, strong fundability doesn’t just happen. You need to start building it from the very beginning. If you didn’t do that, you need to start right now. There are a number of factors that play into fundability, and many of them have to do with how your business is even set up. That affects everything. Business credit is also a huge piece of fundability, but it isn’t everything. Learn all you can about fundability. Work to make it strong. If you do, you will always have access to the capital you need to start, run, and grow your business.
The post Where to Look for Startup Capital and How to Make Sure You Qualify appeared first on Credit Suite.
The post Where to Look for Startup Capital and How to Make Sure You Qualify appeared first on Business Marketplace Product Reviews.