|Small Business Information|
Accepting Checks in Your Business Virtually Risk Free
Most businesses accept checks as form of payment for goods and services. However, accepting checks can be a risky endeavor if your company doesn't follow good policies and procedures for preventing loss from bad checks. In fact, the reason some businesses do not accept checks is because of a history excessive "bad checks" that costs their business to much money and aggravation, preferring to accept only cash and credit cards. Whether a business currently accepts checks or not, they can minimize the cost of accepting checks to less than 1%, which is less than half the 2% to 3% cost of credit card processing. The only payment method cheaper is accepting cash.
Outlined below are tips for formulating your virtually risk free policies and procedures for accepting checks. For the purposes of this article, "virtually risk free" is defined as achieving a cost to accept checks of 1% or less. Not all items will apply to all businesses but if you determine that accepting checks in your business is "high-risk", a more stringent program using more of these tips is needed. In any case, your policy needs to be in writing, distributed to all employees, and followed without exception.
1. Clearly defines acceptable forms of ID, required information and dollar limits. Post these requirements where customers can see them at the point of sale.
2. The check-writer's name and address should be pre-printed on the check. Ask for and write the phone number if it is not pre-printed on the check.
3. Make sure the written and numeral amounts correspond.
4. Watch the check-writer sign the check. If the name is illegible, have the customer print the name below.
5. Compare the signatures, photo and physical description from the ID with that of the check writer.
6. Verify that the ID is still valid! Check the driver's license for signs of alteration or modification.
7. Most returned checks have low check numbers (100 to 500), which indicates a new account and therefore a more risky check, particularly for business or "dba" (doing business as) checks. Do not accept starter checks. Any number under 300 should be a "red flag" and require a manager's approval for acceptance
8. Never take business checks from individuals unless you know the business and the individual. Business checks are not presently eligible for electronic re-presentment. With available software, virtually anyone can produce a business check.
9. Do not accept checks with PO boxes?always get a street address for the check-writer.
10. Do not accept third party checks.
11. The four-digits following the magnetic ink character recognition (MICR) number at the bottom of the check should match the four-digit number at the top right hand of the check.
12. All checks, except government checks, should have a perforation along one side of the check.
13. Use a check verifications system. This form of protection should significantly reduce the volume of "less collectable" checks (those passed by check-writer's with a history of passing bad checks).
14. Have a camera at the point of sale. Forgery, fraud and bad check-writers do not want their picture taken. A video camera conspicuously placed will deter most dishonest people.
15. Utilize a free check collection service for the fastest collection of those checks that do bounce to maximize.
Using a check collection service is critical to minimizing your costs. On average, 2 out of every 100 checks are going to bounce, when that happens, time is of the essence to recovering your money. Check collection services have the tools and expertise to collect on bad checks quickly, over 80% of the time for top providers, and their services are usually free to businesses as they make their income from collections fees allowed by each state.
When choosing a service, choose a free service and avoid the companies who offer "guaranteed" collections for a fee. The fee charged for the guarantee ends up being substantially more expensive than implementing a good check acceptance policy in conjunction with a reputable, free collection service. Also, choose a company with a good reputation for customer service. It is beneficial to know that your service provider will work with you when a special circumstances need to be considered for a particular collection. Finally, expect to maintain full control of your checks. Only hire a service that guarantees to return your checks to you at any time in the collections process.
CybrCollect is a free check collections service that meets these requirements and more. I recommend CybrCollect because:
1. Free service to businesses
2. Excellent Customer Service
3. Clients maintain full control of their checks
4. Best collections rate in the industry, over 80% of NSF checks collected within 30 days
5. Industry leading client website for 24/7 access to collections information
6. Exclusive "Executive Analysis Report" for determining true cost of accepting checks.
Marc Eskew is widely recognized in the area of accounts receivable management. For more information on optimizing your cash flow, the CybrCollect program, or to contact Mr. Eskew, please visit http://www.fmxservices.com/cashflow
Profits are within 6 Degrees of Freedom
How far away is the person you need to meet?
How Your Habits Control Your Small Business Success
Habit: A consistent behavior you perform so frequently that it is automatic.
What Happened to the Money and Freedom?
Ask anyone trapped in a cubical about their entrepreneurial dream and they will tell you, "I want to own my own business. I'll make more and have more time."
Common Sources of Financing for Small Business
The choice of financing is an important determinant of whether a product reaches the market, or whether an existing business can survive. The choice of financing is an important part of being an entrepreneur and business owner, and the ability to raise cash when you have no or limited history takes skill and creativity. There are a number of sources of financing. The suitability of the alternatives depends on what stage you are at, and will change as the company matures from stage to stage. The following outlines the most typical forms available.
Why Clean Mobile Homes for a Business?
Manufactured and Mobile Home owners know that the weather this year will be quite harsh. It's imperative these owners to clean out rain gutters and debris from on top of their homes. They realize that they must thoroughly wash off this summer's dirt so they do not have drip marks on the sides of their cottages this winter. They must eliminate the mold buildup, and unsightly stains. Those mobile homes which have not been cleaned all Winter must have their rain gutters cleaned so when Hurricane remnants dump massive amounts of water in a region the roofs do not collapse. It is equally important to clean the bottom of the eaves and carport to prevent mold spots from forming.
Business Relationships Defined
What makes a business relationship?
Trailblazer Interview with Diane J. Levin, Partnering Solutions
Today is a Red Letter Day! It's special because today is the first edition of the Trailblazer Interviews.
S Corporation ? What Is It?
For many small businesses, the "S" corporation is the business entity of choice. The "S" in S corporation refers to a tax designation. All corporations are created the same way under state law. A small business must then chose a tax status, to wit, "C", "S" or non-profit. Important issues concerning S corporations are covered in this article.
Nevada Incorporation: The Advantages of Incorporating in Nevada
Incorporation in Nevada has become an attractive option for savvy business entrepreneurs, and for good reason. Nevada corporations enjoy many benefits just not available anywhere else. We will not only investigate why this is so, but you will also know what to be aware of when incorporating in Nevada, and how to avoid the most common first-time mistakes.
Everything I Need to Know About Business I Learned From My Nametag
So there I was ? sitting in the audience of an on-campus seminar. Surrounding me sat hundreds of fellow students; each of us wearing one of those little, handwritten, adhesive nametags. When the event was over, we all filed toward the exit. I approached the door and noticed a small trashcan filled to the brim with ripped up, used nametags.
Definition of Security: Small Business Owner
Yes, that IS security when nobody can downsize you because you OWN that small business of yours! But preserving that special advantage is a never-ending job. In fact, do you know what needs to be preserved more than anything else?
New Habits, Rebounding Economy Help To Sell Giftware and Collectibles
Just a few years ago, when one thought of a home-based sales business, Tupperware, Avon and a host of multi-level marketing schemes might have come to mind. Today, however, changing market conditions and evolving consumer habits have converged to make home-based selling businesses a realistic opportunity with real profit potential.
Have You Thanked Your Competitors Today?
Competition in the business world is often viewed as a negative thing, but it doesn't have to be. Competition can benefit you, your competitor, and especially your customer!
Boston Suburban areas a good choice to run a business
BioTechs even with the latest news had shed over 1000 jobs two years ago, as it was reported by The Financial Times, WSJ, and Bloomberg that only 17 of the nearly 1300 BioTech firms were actually profitable. In 2002 the number of jobs were in the 30,000 range in Biotech. 600 layoffs came from Millennium Pharmaceuticals. And the VCs are were barely interested as they hardly even look at tech deals with all of them netting less than 3 Million in venture capital for computer software and less than 10 million in biotech in 2003. But that was then and this is now. Unemployment has dropped, money is flowing the fallout mortgage loans stopped bleeding and money is coming back for investment in all sectors. Nano and Biotech both good.
Top Ten Tips for Leveraging Conferences for Big SUCCESS!
As I am preparing for my attendance to the CoachVille's Third Annual Coaching Conference, I have been considering how I can make the most of my conference attendance. These ten tips will support you in leveraging those conference you will attend in the future and for creating an unforgettable experience!
Local Search and Internet Yellow Pages - A Whole NewVocabulary for Small Businesss
Buyers want both online and local information about where to buy Most small businesses are local in nature, serving people who live nearby. Their customers found them through traditional methods like the Yellow Pages or newspaper ads. So far, the Internet hasn't figured prominently in their marketing efforts. That's about to change, as Local Search methods become more widespread. Even for buyers expecting to spend their money close to home, more and more of them go to the Internet to locate desired products and services. They rely on search engines to find suitable vendors in the fastest, easiest way. Local Search combines the search query word or phrase with specific geographic terms, like city or zip code. That way, search results only include enterprises in that local area. Instead of information about a small enterprise being lost among millions of pages of search results, it shows up in a small pool of local providers. That's good for them, as well as the person looking for what they provide. Small operations can easily be located by a whole new group of buyers Consumers don't simply go to the Yellow Pages when ready to buy - as they once did. Studies show that an astonishing 36% of online searches are conducted to find local businesses. About a quarter of all Internet users already conduct local searches. They'd do even more of it, if the desired small business data were more complete. Local enterprises need to prepare for the impact of changing customer habits. An easy first step is to include your business in Internet Yellow Pages (IYP), along with the printed Yellow Page directory. That puts your enterprise on the radar screen. Learn how your business can make the most of Local Search by visiting http://www.yellowpagesage.com. You'll find reliable advice from experts in Yellow Pages and Local Search so you can get more mileage from your promotional dollars. Start by getting comfortable with search concepts, and improve your odds of being found when people search online for what you offer. You don't even need your own Web site to benefit from Internet Yellow Pages and Local Search. Learn the Relevant Terms Search Engine - method for locating the information available on the Internet; a program that searches Web pages for requested keywords, then returns a list of documents where the query terms were found Google and Yahoo, the major general search engines, have both shifted gears to make Local Search a priority when delivering relevant results. Spider (also called "crawler" or "bot") - goes to every page on every Web site and reads the information so it can be available to searchers; to "crawl" a site it collects and indexes information from it Specialized Search Engines - narrow focus of information crawled and indexed, like medical, business, or shopping sites Keywords - word or phrases used by search engines to locate relevant Web pages; words chosen to improve a site's search engine placement and ranking Search Query - search request, which the search engine compares to the spidered entries, then returns results to the searcher Search Results - compiled list of Web pages that a search engine delivers in response to a query; the number of items returned is usually overwhelming (in the millions), so searchers only bother to view results on the first pages Relevant Results - the test of a good search is whether the results obtained relate to what the person wanted to find, without a lot of irrelevant links Local Search - combining a geographic term in a search query to locate suitable providers in a specific area Pay per Click (PPC) - method of building traffic whereby site owners bid on search terms (keywords) that link to their site Geographic Terms - specific information about the local area that can be included in a local search: zip code, town, county, geographic region, state Top Ranking - sites shown on the first page(s) of search results Search Engine Optimization (SEO) - fine-tuning keywords and page content so the Web site rates high in search engine results Tags and Titles (on Web Pages) - provide site keywords and information to search engine spiders for indexing a site Internet Yellow Pages (IYP) - directory of business phone numbers and locations in a geographic area, organized by category; searchable data base accessed on the Internet Make your business easy for searchers to find The public is embracing the convenience of searching on the Internet to find information about local businesses. However, their searches for desired information are compromised because so many local enterprises don't show up in the databases as yet. Those that do have an edge in their local market. Climb aboard! Make sure searchers can find you. For little or no money, you can expose your enterprise to the whole world. Whether or not your business has a Web site, you need to provide the information people are looking for in the places that they look for it. Local Search and Internet Yellow Pages open new avenues to buyers ready to spend. Best of all, they support and compliment your traditional methods of finding new business. So you cover all your bases. (c)2004, Lynella Grant
Increase the Wealth in Your Community
Many of us have noticed how some nearby communities seem to be "wealthier" than other nearby communities. They seem to have more shopping markets, more restaurants, more choices; items often cost more in these communities than they do in surrounding areas, yet the affluence remains where the prices are high; people are drawn to these communities, bringing even more resources and more wealth.
Web Based CRM Systems: Get Mobile; Get Results
Everyday more web based companies enter the business scene. The low initial investment, potentially high revenue, and convenience of owning and operating a business from your home PC or laptop is enticing an ever-increasing number of entrepreneurs to try their hand at e-business. Unfortunately, most of these would-be companies disappear shortly after their initial market entry.
Are You Ready to Own and Operate a Business?
How often has someone thought of starting a business based solely on the fact they think it will be easier than working for someone else. Fact is, owning and operating a business can be one of the most grueling experiences you will have. Granted, there are many advantages, but unless someone has actually run a business there is much to consider before you make that decision.
Age Old Marketing Technique Improves Business Plan Executive Summaries
Every business plan book tells you how the Executive Summary is your opportunity to provide a brief overview of your business plan; capture your readers' attention and imagination; and, summarize the plan's highlights and key selling points.
|home | site map|