When you are strapped for cash, getting a short-term loan is what most people can think about. Unlike in the past where you had to make a trip to the bank and apply for a loan, now you can get a quick short-term loan at the comfort of your home.
However, it’s important that you make an informed choice to ensure that you are getting the most suitable online loan. Doing this requires that you have a clear understanding of various aspects of the loans as well as the lenders. In this article, you’ll learn some actionable tips to help you get the best loan.
Consider your intended use for the loan to know exactly how much you need to borrow
There are multiple reasons for taking loans but the reason behind the borrowing could influence the available choices. There are some lenders who are not concerned with how you spend the money but there are others who limit where the money can be spent.
After knowing how the money is going to be used, you can now settle on an amount that is sufficient to cover the expenses as well as any upfront fees for the short term loan. If you are using the short-term loan to take care of a major expense, then it’s important you create a budget and capture every expense.
Basically, almost every lender has the minimum loan as well as the maximum amount available for their clients to borrow. When you know how much you need, it’s easy to choose the most appropriate lender.
Image source The Blue Diamond Gallery
Take a look at your financial situation and determine the monthly payments you can comfortably pay
If you are not confident in your financial situation, it’s likely that you won’t be comfortable with the payments. Generally, there is no point in taking loan whose monthly payments will stretch your finances and make life unbearable.
Before you settle for a short-term loan, it’s important to know if you can manage to pay the monthly payments and at the same time pay all your bills. This calls choosing a loan with favorable terms that are largely determined by the following factors.
- The repayment period and this is usually in months
- The amount borrowed
- The interest rates charged
To be on the safe side, choose a monthly payment amount that allows you to have some extra cash to take care of other financial obligations. If you are patient in your search, you’ll find multiple lenders who can give you a short-term loan that suits your financial situation.
Choosing the right online lender
While finding an online lender willing to offer you a loan will be easy, picking the best from the sea of different lenders isn’t easy.
To get started, ask a few trustworthy people if they have used any loan provider in the past. If you don’t have a relative or friend with such knowledge, you can ask a reputable financial professional. However, you should be cautious when taking recommendations from people who get some commissions from lending companies.
Check the credentials of the lender to ensure that they are authorized to conduct business in your state. It’s also important to check the lender’s rating with the BBB as well as the reviews on their websites.
The most appropriate $5000 income based lender is one who has sufficient experience in the financial industry and understands the market dynamics. You should settle for lenders who have a good track record since they already have a reputation to guard and therefore have a tendency to offer better customer service. Otherwise, avoid any fly-by-night operators who are characterized by little or no reputation in the market.
Look beyond teaser rates and calculate the APR
A legitimate lender will always strive to offer loans with transparent and reasonable terms. However, you’ll come across multiple adverts that quote the low rates just to get your attention. Don’t take the bait because the rates quoted “as low as” are normally out of reach for average borrowers.
Instead, settle on lenders who are free to reveal the exact APR for a loan without presenting you with multiple figures for the same loan. The APR should be made of the loan fee, interest rates, and the loan term so a good company won’t be presenting some additional rates.
Read the fine print in the loan agreement
While it’s important to deal with companies with a sufficient experience, track record of great service, nothing can equal a clear understanding of the loan agreement.
If a lender is good, they will include all the fees and charges in the agreement. However, it’s important to study the document just to be sure that there aren’t any hidden charges that can cause problems along the way. Normally, you’ll find the hidden charges disguised as application fees, pre-payment penalties or membership fees.
But if the agreement captures all the expected terms and rates that you are comfortable with, you can go ahead and sign it. You should know that this is a legally binding agreement and you are expected to honor the agreed terms.
While it’s important that you be on the lookout for predatory lenders, you must exercise responsible borrowing. As a rule of thumb, short-term loans are only meant to be used to solve short-term financial difficulties. This is because most lenders expect you to repay the money in a few weeks or months.
In addition, it’s always prudent to draft a budget before taking a loan so that you can be accountable for the expenditures. If you realize that you can’t meet the loan obligations due to unforeseen circumstances, you should communicate with your lender immediately. In most cases, they are ready to help by offering alternative rates and terms that are suitable to your current financial state.
Online loans are not new in the market. In fact, most of the traditional banks that had not adopted the technology are now actively doing business online. This offers the advantage of lower operating costs, efficiency and convenience to both parties.
Since you can easily compare different lenders in a short time, you have the advantage of choosing the most appropriate lender to work with. The tips discussed here can help you navigate the pitfalls of online short term loans.
Blogging, social media, SEO, online advertising — digital marketing comes with a long to-do list — which is the last thing a busy business owner needs. You’re already responsible for product development, customer service, management, and accounting, but you also have to promote your company and your product.
Instead of trying to plan and execute the perfect digital marketing strategy, start with a few high-yield, low-labor online marketing tactics. Even with your packed schedule, you can squeeze in these five tasks within the next 30 days.
1. Update Your Business Listings
Listing your business in many places with a correctly spelled business name, along with an accurate address and phone number, makes it easy for customers to find you. Another nice benefit of improving your business listings: It’s good for local SEO.
- Create a consistent name, address, and phone number (NAP) format for your company. If you use a CMS, copy and paste it into a widget so it populates every page. Make sure it also appears on your “Contact Me” page.
- Check your existing social profiles. Add your NAP to business social media profiles, and include a link to your website.
- Add your name to relevant directories. Submit your updated NAP to professional organization member directories, local small business listings sites, and other high-quality sites that will refer customers to your business.
- List your business information with search engines. Submit your listing to Google My Business, Bing Places, and Yahoo Local. Be sure to follow up on any verification requests.
2. Optimize Your Business Web Pages and Social Profiles
Incorporating specific keywords into your business Web pages and improving how your site looks in search can improve your search rankings and send additional traffic your way. It’s also a great first step toward developing a solid SEO strategy.
- Research some keywords related to your business. Visit your Google Webmaster Tools page, choose your website, and find Search Analytics under search traffic. Look at queries people used to find your site, which will give you some initial keyword ideas. Plug your ideas into Ubersuggest or Wordstream’s free keyword tool to generate a list of keyword ideas. Also, research your competitors’ sites to see which keywords they rely on to attract search traffic. Once you have some keyword ideas, incorporate them into your Web pages and social media profiles without overstuffing your text with keywords.
- Create better title tags and meta descriptions. If you use WordPress, add the SEO by Yoast plugin, and fill in title tags and meta descriptions for each page. Incorporate your keywords, and make them compelling so people won’t be able to resist clicking. Website content writing at a very high level may require the services of a professional copywriter.
3. Write One Blog Post Per Week
Weekly blogging serves up fresh content for search engines every week and consistent content to share on social networks. Seeing what you know written down and shared also accomplishes other important goals, such as increasing your confidence, fine-tuning your marketing message, and creating new opportunities to communicate with customers.
4. Develop a Social Media Routine
Social media can become an inescapable time vortex if you’re not careful, but you can’t avoid it either. Try these tips to manage business social media in fewer than 20 minutes per day:
- Check the day’s activities. Respond to notifications, mentions, requests for connections, customer service queries, and other immediate issues.
- Browse your feeds. Scroll through your feeds and hashtags relevant to you to catch the latest news.
- Post something. Share a link, make a comment, or offer a promotion related to your company. If you use a tool like HootSuite or Buffer, you can create multiple posts and schedule them ahead of time.
- See which posts and shares performed best for you, and learn more about your followers. Repeat your successes, and keep experimenting as you learn more about your audience.
5. Spend $1 per Day on Facebook Ads
Facebook has outstanding demographic targeting tools to put your business in front of prospective customers. Spend $30 this month experimenting with Facebook ads. Next month, keep experimenting before moving onto Twitter promoted tweets or Google AdWords.
The key to getting started with online marketing is simple: just get started. You’ll be surprised by how much you’ll accomplish when you take the 30-day challenge.
The Internet allows entrepreneurs to operate businesses from the comfort of their own homes. But there’s much more to running an online venture than simply logging on. Studies show that more than nine out of 10 online companies fail within just four months. These industry secrets can help you jump start your online business and give it the best chance of success.
Launch a Landing Page
Image via Flickr by SEOPlanter
Many online business owners think their online presence will begin with their website. But a good site takes time to develop, time that could be spent generating buzz and collecting the email addresses of people interested in your firm. A landing page is the ideal solution. Online services make it easy to get one with very little design or programming know-how.
Take Care of Logistics
An online business takes more than a website. There are many logistic matters you must take care before you start collecting from customers. Some U.S. states require online businesses to register for a business license. You may also decide to take out business insurance to protect your new company. Details like this should be handled early, so you can start focusing on business operations sooner.
An online business might not have the hefty overheads of a bricks and mortar company, but that doesn’t mean funding isn’t important. Funding will help you secure a strong domain name, purchase the goods or materials you need to operate, and employ the experts necessary to fill gaps in your own knowledge. Even if you’re confident in your business knowledge, you’ll probably need to hire a designer to create a professional looking website and corporate branding.
Companies like bad credit business loans are ideal if you’ve been turned away by other lenders. Note though that you need to be in business for at least three months to qualify for these loans.
Make a Business Plan
When you’re focused on jump starting your business, it’s easy to forget the big picture. However, successful small business owners know that plans are essential for success. A weekly to-do list will ensure areas of the business aren’t overlooked. A more comprehensive business plan, which sets out your business goals for the next month, the next year, the next five years, and beyond, will also help give your company direction.
Spread the Word
An online business needs customers which you’ll gain by marketing your company. When you’re starting out, it’s smart to take advantage of free services like Craigslist, free online business directories, and social networking sites. Create a business account with social networks you already use, share it with your friends, and encourage them to spread the word. More than 90 percent of people trust the company endorsements of family members and friends, so this kind of word-of-mouth advertising can really help establish your company’s good name.
Working from home as the boss of your own online business sounds ideal, but it’s not as easy as it might appear. Keep these tips in mind to jump start your online business and give it the best opportunity to grow.