How to differentiate your services in your local market 0 43

Whether you’re a dentist, a dog walker or a decorator, there’s always a chance that a potential customer will ask what makes you different from your local competitors. To impress them and ensure they decide that you’re the right service provider for them, you need to be able to clearly differentiate your business.

So, can you quickly and confidently sum up what makes your small business so unique?

Defining your unique selling point (USP) is essential for building trust among your customers. Grab a pen, a sheet of paper and let’s get brainstorming to help you work out what differentiates your service.

  1. Research your customers

Look at your list of current clients. Write down what you do for them, why they keep coming back to you and try and work out what problems you solve for them:

  • Is it your location?
  • Do you have a strong personal relationship with them?
  • Is it the hours you make yourself available?
  • Is it your price?

You should also ask clients directly why they like working with you.

  1. Assess your local market and competition

To know what makes you unique, it’s essential to perform competitor analysis. Write down the names of all your local competitors, and try and put together a list of what you think their USPs are, what they do well, and what they do poorly.

  1. Draw up a persona of your ideal customer

Create a persona of your ideal customer. You need to decide what their pain points are, and then decide how you are uniquely placed to solve those problems. Are they working moms? Are they busy lawyers? Are they stressed out office managers? Once you know exactly who they are, you can offer a service that suits their exact needs.

  1. Define your USP

You now need to define exactly what makes you unique in your local market. List all the things that make you different, then boil this down to a couple of sentences that summarize your USP. Be as specific as possible, and include information that explains:

  • Who you work with
  • What you do
  • Why you do it
  • When you do it
  • Where you do it
  • And finally, how you do it

For example: My company, Happy Paws, believes dog walkers should fit around the lives of dog owners. That’s why we come to customers anywhere in Miami, any time of day, taking their dogs on happy walks for as long as their owners need.

Once you can confidently tell customers what makes you unique, they’ll know exactly why they should spend money with you.

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Accounting basics for new business owners: bank accounts 0 42

If you started your business as a side-hustle from your main job or college degree, there’s a good chance you accepted payment for your first invoices into your personal bank account. It sure feels good getting that boost to your monthly bank balance, but in the long run, this approach is just not sustainable – especially as the business grows.

Let’s look at why you need to open at least two separate accounts in addition to your personal one: one for tax and one for income after tax.

We’ll also explore whether you need to open a dedicated business bank account, or if you can just keep on using a standard personal checking account.

Why you need to open at least two new accounts for your business

When starting your business, it’s highly recommended that you open two new bank accounts, besides your personal checking account and any savings you have. There are a few obvious reasons for doing this:

  1. Keep your personal account for personal spending

Perhaps the most obvious reasons for separating your accounts is that you save the confusion of having your personal income mixed up with the business’s money. Once you have separate accounts, it will be much easier to track how much money the business is making, and cuts the chance of any confusion about which payments are personal, and which are professional.

  1. Putting money aside for tax season

If you’ve never filed a tax return before, you should read up on the dates by which you need to file your taxes with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and find out about the forms you have to fill in.

In any case, you’re going to need to put aside a proportion of your income from your small business to eventually pay your taxes. How much you will need to pay depends on a number of things, including your income, expenses and the type of business you’ve set up. Here’s a decent guide from The Balance to working out what you will owe.

Say you estimate that about 20% of your income will go on taxes. Every time a client makes a payment and it lands in your business account, you should get into the habit of syphoning off 20% into your ‘tax’ account, so you’ll never come up short when you go to pay your tax bill.

  1. Keep business bank account for business spending

This bank account will hold all your income after tax, and belongs to the business. Anything the business buys, or any payments you make to employees should come from this account. It’s also a good idea to ‘pay yourself’ from this account, sending a monthly salary to your personal account – it means you avoid ever over-spending.

Separate accounts back you up if you get audited

There are other reasons you should keep your money in separate accounts, besides tax and pay. Perhaps most importantly, if the IRS ever decides to audit your business, it will be much easier for you to hand over your statements if your personal and private banking are kept separate.

Why might the IRS investigate a small business like yours?

A common reason is that the IRS may suspect you are running a ‘hobby business’. A hobby business, such as occasionally running a stall at a flea market or doing a garage sale, is not counted as a ‘real business’. Nonetheless, some people try to claim expenses on any losses their hobby makes, which the IRS does not allow. If you seem to be running a hobby business, you therefore may be audited. However, if you have a separate bank account for your business, and can show that this is your principal source of income, you won’t have anything to worry about.

OK, so what kind of account do I need?

The answer is: it’s up to you. Many freelancers, solopreneurs and small business owners choose to use a regular free bank account for their business income. This is totally fine if you are registered as a sole-proprietor. However, if your business is registered as an LLC (Limited Liability Company) you have to open an official business bank account.

Business bank accounts usually come with some kind of monthly charge, which is one reason freelancers and those just starting out prefer to stick with a free personal account. That said, there are definite benefits to using a business bank account as a solopreneur:

  • Perks and credit

Most business bank accounts give you a lot more credit than regular accounts, as well as other perks and benefits. You may well also get access to free advice from an account manager and you boost your chances of getting a loan from the bank if you ever need one.

  • More professional

This is about perception as much as anything. If you need to write checks to your suppliers, it looks a lot more professional to have your company’s name and address printed on the check than your personal details. This also goes for the IRS, who will also see the business as a serious concern.

  • Connect to your accounting software

Many banks have set up agreements with accounting software companies that allow you to connect the two. This just makes for much easier accounting and bookkeeping as the business grows, and saves you a lot of hassle.

Once you’ve got the basics of bank accounts in place, your business will be much more sustainable, and your finances less confusing. Ultimately that means you will have much firmer foundations on which to grow long term.

15 Ideas for College Kids to Make Some Extra Cash and can get started in 10 minutes! 0 35

Nachum Kligman

Publishing House Address:

Legal Notice

All rights reserved. No portion of this book may be reproduced in any form without permission from the publisher, except as permitted by copyright law in the country of publication.

Abstract

We live in a world of opportunities, nowadays. The rate of innovation and opportunities popping up every day is unprecedented. This generation is without a doubt consistently pushing the boundaries of creativity and inventions, especially in the technology sectors. There are so many ways of making money nowadays that would have been considered a myth a decade ago. Imagine the number of people working from their home and earning six figures annually; this is something that would have been seriously questioned and argued a few years ago. But, today it is as real and definite as day and night.

Certainly, there are several ways to make money in the 21st century. Students are not left out in this; they more than ever before have the chance to make tonnes of money while still in school. That’s of course if they are willing to take on the opportunities presented to them. So, therefore, we are going to give 15 accessible and straightforward ideas in this eBook that students can apply to make money while in school.

Introduction 1

1.1 Baby Sitting 1

1.2 Tutor Students 1

1.3 Work Online As a Remote English Tutor 2

1.4 Travel Consultant 2

1.5 Write and Sell eBooks 2

1.6 Make Money On Social Media 3

1.7 Write 3

1.8 Develop Applications and Websites 3

1.9 House painting 4

1.10 Rubbish Removal 4

1.11 Landscaping 4

1.12 Server or Bartender 4

1.13 Buy and Resell Textbooks 5

1.14 Professional Cleaner 5

1.15 Dog Walker 5

A Final Note 6

Introduction

How can I make extra money over the summer holiday? How can I use my spare time to make some extra cash? Well, these are the questions that most students ask themselves. Student life isn’t easy. You have exhausted your credit card limits, and you can’t rely on your parents anymore. You are now a grown up, and you just have to make some money. You must, therefore, use your time properly and harness existing opportunities to make money.

This eBook has been prepared to help you spot the numerous opportunities of making money as a student. It provides 15 ideas in 10 minutes for college kids to make some extra cash. It also gives you a snippet view of the amount you can make. So, try to find something useful from these ideas.

1.1 Baby Sitting

It sounds odd, doesn’t it? Babysitting, of all things! Yes. Babysitting or playing nanny. After all, you have plenty of idle time, and you need the money. Often, most babysitting jobs come when there is plenty of time such as holiday breaks, weekends and summer breaks. Babysitting isn’t terrible. It’s all about knowing how to wrangle children and take care of them.

Whether you desire to look after school-aged children on the weekend or help their fatigued parents as a night nanny, several opportunities cannot elude you. Use your network of acquaintances and friends first since most parents feel comfortable to hire people they trust. You will mint cash by only using your childcare experience.

Babysitting jobs allow you to work around your schedule instead of establishing a schedule around your job. It is not easy to have a part-time job that augers well with your typical semester load. Babysitting jobs provide the ideal flexibility required for a student to make additional income over the holidays.

The median pay for babysitters in the UK is £9.14 per hour according to PayScale Human Capital, but generally, slight variations are depending on the city. You can, therefore, earn more by working late night, living in a larger city or watching more kids.

1.2 Tutor Students

If you are au fait in a particular subject, then you need to consider tutoring students during your free time. If you are training in a particular topic or advanced education, this will be a very lucrative opportunity.

You can choose to join a tutoring agency or start your own business and focus on high-level disciplines such as science, mathematics and foreign languages. These subjects are usually very tricky for most parents, and as such there will always be a demand for assistance.

Moreover, some parents offer their children home schooling which provides opportunities for making extra money. Depending on the branding and packaging of your product, you will be able to negotiate a lucrative pay from the service.

You need to find your clients by advertising in online sites such as craigslist or only using word of mouth and referrals. You can also meet your customers at local libraries, coffee shops or in their homes.

Statistics released by Thetutorpages indicate that private tutors in the UK earn between £30 and £42 per hour as per depending on the age of the child and the experience of the instructor. If you live in a grandiose city, then the prospects of earning more increase.

1.3 Work Online As a Remote English Tutor

With English gaining more importance as a business language across the globe, there is a huge demand for fluency in the language to eliminate trade barriers. Additionally, immigration into the UK has resulted in so many non-natives who are neither fluent nor proficient in the language. These people need some tutoring. What an opportunity!

If you are an English teacher with the willingness and patience of regularly coaching people over skype, then there are numerous opportunities offered beyond the frontiers of your country. If you have an ESL accreditation, the better, but even if you don’t have, you can still offer lessons as long as you are a native.

Sites such as Learn4Good, Indeed and Remote.co provide remote English teaching jobs. Just stay posted on the latest openings and try getting one that can suit your free time or which happens to come during your summer holiday.

The pay for such jobs depends on the site you will be working for and your bargaining power if you manage to get direct clients. But you can make more than $25 an hour tutoring people in the United Arab Emirates or Hong Kong. Hats more, the jobs can open doors for you to travel across the world.

1.4 Travel Consultant

Are you a globe trotter? Then you have occasionally found yourself trawling through sites such as Lonely Planet searching for airfare sales. Why not monetize this by becoming a travel consultant? You only need to start with family and friends and ask for referrals. Probably sign for a site such as Plansify as their tour trip advisor, and you will be able to connect with several travelers seeking some advice.

You can use your Skype account to answer any questions from your audience and make money for the consultancy services you are offering. As a registered advisor, you can make $50 to $75 for an hour long skype session. Of course, that’s a generous income. To increase your revenues, you only need to have a larger audience who will always be calling on you. It all depends on the quality of advice you offer.

1.5 Write and Sell eBooks

You certainly know a lot about a particular subject, Right? Why not use your knowledge to write eBooks and sell them to make some supplementary income? With the web growing at a sui generis rate, there is a huge demand for e-books to provide some guidance to guide people on several aspects of life.

Articulately outline your ideas and ensure that your sections are properly filled with detailed advice. If you run a blog about a particular subject, then you should consider converting your blog posts into a book.

When you decide to sell your eBook, choose whether you would like to sell through your site or use established platforms such as Apple’s iBooks or Amazon. The UK is the second largest eBook market after the US and therefore provides a lot of opportunity for eBook sales. So, you can use the tremendous potential provided by eBooks market to publish a book and sell it either through Amazon.co.uk or other platforms.

There is a lot of money on eBook sales. Typically, Amazon pays a 70% royalty on eBooks ranging from $2.99 and $9.99.

1.6 Make Money On Social Media

During your free time, you’d probably spend a lot of time on social media checking friends online, snooping their profiles, posting selfies on Instagram or watching some videos on YouTube. Now that you are savvy in navigating through these platforms, why not make some supplementary income from these platforms?

Identify your hobby and think how you can leverage social media to make money. Start by joining student organizations and groups to increase your audience. There are several opportunities available to make some dough on social media. You can use participate in promoting affiliate products and become an Amazon affiliate associate additionally; you can optimize on opportunities provided by social media to promote other business’s goods and services as a direct way of earning money. You can also tie up with the YouTube Partner Program and make money from the advertising that emanates from your channel. You can also become a social media manager.

Money on social media varies with what you opt to do. According to PayScale, the median pay of a social media manager in the UK is £25,287 per year. You can negotiate and get some payment on a per hour basis.

1.7 Write

If you are good in crafting some convincing and engaging blog posts, it is time to put this skill to work. To establish experience, you may begin with content sites, or you may start your blog. But, you need to begin with available platforms first as you develop your blog.

You can also commence pitching in pay writing sites and blogs. Several websites pay, and you can try getting a platform there. Appropriately research on the target sites before pitching to the editors. If a site requires you to pitch ideas, then email the editor then follow the guidelines.

The payment widely varies depending on the site you are writing for.  Of course, this may range from three cents per word to $50 upwards for a guest post on well-paying sites. Some blogs such as the  Penny Hoarder offer outstanding bonuses depending on the performance of the post.

1.8 Develop Applications and Websites

If you fritter a lot of time on Github than on Facebook or you are savvy in building WordPress plugins from scratch or if you are good in coding and programming, then why not monetize those skills? All you need to do is identify an existing problem, then solve it.

Have you noticed any plugin that doesn’t work correctly? Then that is an opportunity for improving it. If you detect any cyclical problem in WordPress, grab the opportunity and tweak it.

The average pay of a web developer in the UK according to PayScale is £9.86/hr or £24822 annually, and this varies with level and experience. A senior web developer can take home a £37100 annual package or simply £31.25/hr. However, when handling a crisis, it is easy to double the rates, especially when there is a hacking incident that needs to be solved.

1.9 House painting

Ok, I get you. You probably think why the hell would anyone want house painting as a part time hassle? I will tell you the reason. The money.

Painting ceilings floors, walls, and trims are like engaging in some relaxing introspection even though it is a job. And, the good thing is that you can make a lot of money. It is among the easiest trades to venture into as you don’t require a license’s a part time employee, you will be using the materials and tools provided by the employer or contractor. If you are hired as a nonpartisan contractor, then you only need $100 to buy the tool and start the contract.

Data from PayScale indicates that the average hourly pay of a painter in the UK is £10.08 per hour and this varies with the city. So, you can increase your income by working in high paying cities and getting more gigs.

1.10 Rubbish Removal

Most people would rather have their waste removed from their bins without having to handle it themselves. Thereby lies the opportunity for students to make money. If you have a pickup truck, all the great. Use it to earn money by helping people get rid of their rubbish at a fee. All you ought to do is to put an ad on craigslist showcasing your services, and you will get a lot of feedback.

PayScale indicates that the average hourly pay for a loader in waste collection and disposal services is £7/hr., but this greatly varies with the location. In cities such as Birmingham, a driver team leader earns £10.50/hr., the leading hand earns £10.50/hr., and the loader makes £8.45/hr.

1.11 Landscaping

If you are not worried about soiling your hands and using physical energy to make an extra dime, then landscaping is a part time venture that can pay you very well. If you have the technical knowledge of handling massive machinery, then your earnings might increase. Certainly, there are more established companies that offer this services, but you can approach your neighbors and undercut the companies on price.

Your neighbor could be paying a lot just to have his lawn landscaped. Why not cash in on them? After all, you will enjoy the nice weather as you mow the grass. Such opportunities are not hard to come by as you can just market the service by word of mouth. You can also check craigslist and other local advertising boards to see if there could be a company that requires some help during the busy season. Ensure you have all the licenses before venturing into the jobs.

PayScale reports that the average wage of a landscaper in the UK is £8.99 / hour with experience and location of the job having a moderate effect on the pay from the job.

1.12 Server or Bartender

Bartending and serving have always been the most popular job choices for most college students. These jobs come with a lot of flexibility in their scheduling since most establishments offer the jobs in the evenings or on weekends. Moreover, these jobs come with a potential of earning a lot of money. Although the working hours of the night can be long, the tips are lovely and can at times confound you. Avoid working in bars within the college. College students never tip!

To be hired visit the restaurant or club in person accompanied by a professional resume as if you are requisitioning for a corporate job. Talk to the waiters and bartenders to get some tips on the hiring process.

Reported by PayScale, the average pay for a bartender In the UK is £6.74/hr since most of the people on the job do not require a lot of experience. Tips constitute a lot of the income that bartenders make from their duties. The amount of pay and tips varies with the geography of the bar and the nature of the establishment-high end or middle class.

1.13 Buy and Resell Textbooks

Once the semester wrap-up, you can earn some money by disposing of your textbooks for some money. But, you can also start profiting from the sale of textbooks. Rather than focusing on your books why not purchase books from sites such as eBay and then resell them in sites such as BookScouter.com?

It is important to note the ISBN of the books and establish how much they are selling at BookScouter.com. That way, you can be able to forecast the selling price and determine your profit in advance before buying the books.


In textbook reselling, profit margins are not that huge. However, if you average $3 to $5 a book, then you can increase profits by maximizing the sales.

1.14 Professional Cleaner

Professional cleaning jobs are very lucrative since they come with excellent pay. You can select a particular avenue of the field and undertake a needs assessment of your surrounding community. You can choose to work as a private house cleaner. You will begin by getting your neighbors as your clients and agree on the rates and hours of the service. In some exemplifications, you may be required to purchase cleaning products on your own, so ensure that you price your service appropriately.

You can also smell around for a job in a medical establishment, professional cleaning company or hotel. These jobs, irrespective of location, only require someone with attention to detail, strong work ethic and a good attitude. Moreover, most of the jobs in hospitals, offices and schools cone after hours, making them ideal for college students.

According to PayScale, the average pay of a house cleaner in the UK is £7.53 per hour, but this varies from one location to the other. So, you can increase your pay by working in better-paying cities.

1.15 Dog Walker

Do you have experience in handling dogs? The dog walking can be a good gig for your summer holiday. It is turning a hobby into a money-minting opportunity. You can choose to work for a dog training company or yourself. Just ensure that you have the required insurance. To start, advertise your services in pet related establishments.

The pay for a dog walker is £8.06 within the UK. So you can get more of this gigs and make a lot of money. You can also get more dogs to increase the pay.

A Final Note

There are opportunities around you; you need to be vigilant to identify these financial possibilities and set out immediately to take full advantage of them. Even better is a scenario whereby you land on an opportunity that happens to be a passion. Of course even more vital to making money is the idea of loving what you do, plus getting paid to do it. So, therefore, it is not always about making money – it should be something you love doing otherwise you might end up, unhappy, stressed and depressed. 

That said, so, how do you plan to make some extra cash? Make this holiday a money making venture. Identify your skills and spot opportunities. Who knows? These gigs may end up being your primary career.

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