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Avoid the Pitfalls of new VA's!
Learn how to avoid many of the most common mistakes many new VA business owners have made. Read »



Why do you need a Business Plan?

Why do you need a Business Plan?

It is very difficult to determine all of the crucial factors to starting a business without a well defined business plan. A plan will help you clearly see what your personal goals for your business are, what your start-up costs will be and how long it will take you to earn a profit. You will need to set specific business objectives beyond the desire to make money.

A well defined business plan can increase your belief in your potential success or convince you the business is not really the direction you want to go. Do not underestimate the importance of a plan simply because you are starting a home based business.

Read more…

Best Virtual Assistant Services

Best Virtual Assistant Services

What are the best virtual assistant services to offer today?

When deciding what services to offer, you need to take a look at your skills and experience. Do you have a specialized skill you could focus your business around? Alsoconsider what type of work you enjoy most and what types of clients would you like to work with.

There are some trends today that are in-demand and much needed today but businesses seeking to outsource.

Learn more about the best virtual assistant services to offer…

Virtual Assistant Jobs Online

Virtual Assistant Jobs Online

There are some places on the Internet  where you may find some work for home based business owners or freelancers that may also have virtual assistant jobs you can get for some fast money and experience. Be sure you avoid the “work at home” scams and go with jobs and websites that don’t ask for any upfront fees. You don’t have to pay for legitimate jobs. The exception is some job boards that require a nominal one time fee to join.

Learn more about finding Virtual Assistant Jobs

Need Special Virtual Assistant Training

Do You Need Special Virtual Assistant Training or Certification To Be Successful?

There is a tremendous demand now for Virtual Assistants. They offer a variety of help to entrepreneurs and businesses around the world. It’s a growing industry and an excellent home business opportunity. If you happen to be considering becoming a virtual assistant, you will discover being self-employed offers a range of rewards.

One advantage to starting a Virtual Assistant business is the low start-up costs. However, many wonder if virtual assistant training programs are worthwhile and affordable. Training can actually be quite cost effective if you learn a new skill that is in-demand and can command a high fee. Generally the more trained and specialized you are, the higher rates you can charge your clients.

There are a wide range of training options for you to consider. I would not recommend getting any Virtual Assistant Certification just for the sake of being certified, but if there are any skills you are lacking or you want to expand your service offerings, a good virtual assistant training program designed specifically for VAs is worth the time and financial investment.

The key benefits of Virtual Assistant Certification and Training are …

Help distinguish you from your competition. Some prospective clients could possibly select your business over your competition because you have certification. You can use your certification as a marketing tool.

Enable you to build a prosperous home business. A number of virtual assistant training systems cover the skills and services clients want to outsource. You’ll also discover ways to sell and expand your VA business. Your official certifications and training can also help help command greater fees.

Broadens your skills and practical knowledge. You may have some valuable skills and experience already, and of course, you should utilize these skills to develop your Virtual assistant home business. A training course should help you add more expertise and knowledge to your portfolio of services. Several training programs present technical skills as well as particular training intended for virtual assistants. You’ll be able to offer more.

Self-confidence enhancer. When you pass your certification examination you will feel more prepared to start your business. Self-confidence does matter when dealing with customers. When you’re confident in your abilities, your clients will be as well.

Networking. Some training packages offer a chance to connect with other VAs. This is often extremely helpful. It’s good to be able to connect with other people who are dealing with similar situations.

Choosing a Good Training Program for Virtual Assistants

Because VAs are very popular now, there are a number of programs to choose from. Be sure the VA training program you decide on:

* Will fit your budget.
* Supplies the training and information you’d like or need to master.
* Is well reviewed by other virtual assistants.

Do you need to become certified to build a thriving VA home business? No, certainly not. VAs worldwide make a good living without having certification. Will training and/or certifications make it easier to become successful? It might. My business didn’t take off until I finished several VA training courses and expanded my services.  It’s worth checking out.  Here is my recommended resource for virtual assistant training
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Why Work At Home As A Virtual Assistant?

Why Work At Home As A Virtual Assistant?

A Virtual Assistant, also known as a VA, is someone who works at home from his/her own home office to deliver services remotely to a small business, entrepreneur or company on a contract basis as opposed to as a staff member. This can be a great home business for people needing to generate extra money or earn a living.

Look at the following advantages to becoming a Virtual Assistant.

#1 Capability to Work at Home

Many individuals discover the option to become a VA is the right one for them. If you’re a parent or caregiver, being a VA makes it possible to earn money and work at home. VAs can manage their clients virtually from home and deliver services online. A VA home business is easier now than before because of today’s technology for instance the Internet, faxes, and communication systems like Skype. Gone are the days when you need to dress up, fight the early morning traffic and go to a formal office.

It’s also good to be able to move and work wherever you prefer. If you need a vacation but have a deadline, you can take some work with you. Imagine working at you favorite coffee shop, outside on a sunny day, or even while stuck waiting at the doctor’s office.

#2 It’s Interesting and Rewarding

You’ll be able to offer any services you would like as a Virtual Assistant. You are able to develop your business around a variety of general services or concentrate on a specified service for example Web design and maintenance. Having some variety or performing what you really enjoy may keep you from burning out. Forget about day to day boredom.

#3 Businesses are interested in Virtual Assistance

The demand for virtual assistants will continue to grow in the future. As more companies outsource and do business on the Internet, there exists an expanding need for virtual help.

Additionally, many small business owners and solo entrepreneurs are discovering the benefits of outsourcing rather than doing it all by themselves. It puts you in a prime position to create a successful home-based business and a career.

#4 Small Financial Investment and no particular Requirements

There isn’t a lot needed to get started as a VA. You basically need a functional home office with a good computer, high speed Net connection, business phone and a website to become a VA. You possibly have some of the equipment currently and can be up and running with a small investment of a few hundred dollars. You also don’t need any specific degree or certification. If you have the experience, you may start immediately or invest in some of the excellent training and certification programs for virtual assistants.

#5 Be Your Own Boss

There are other advantages too along with the freedom to work at home. You are able to set your own schedule. You can determine if you like to work early in the morning or late into the evening. You can also take time off when you need to. You don’t have to stress about asking for time off or using up your sick days. Probably the biggest benefit to being a VA is that you are able to decide who you will work with. You’ll be able to supply the services you pick with the clients you choose to work with.

Think about starting a virtual assistant business if you wish make some extra money or earn a full-time living by working at home. Virtual assistants are in demand currently. You can build a home based business that works around your lifestyle instead of compromising your home life for your job.

Learn how you can work at home as a Virtual Assistant…

Become a Virtual Assistant Part-Time

Become a Virtual Assistant Part-Time

You can become a virtual assistant part-time while you still have the security of a job a steady income. While there are some challenges to starting a home based business while you are still working, it is possible.

One great thing about being a virtual assistant, as well as other home businesses, is you can work whenever you want. You can work before or after work, whatever works best for and your schedule.

Learn more about becoming a Virtual Assistant part-time…

Home Business Website

Create Your Own Home Business Website

Today you can easily create your home business website without paying a web designer thousands of dollars. There are several ways to build a website for free today including free templates from your hosting company or by using a blog platform.


Today I am going to discuss using the free and open source blogging tool WordPress. WordPress actually has a totally free blog option at WordPress.com, but I am going to recommend you use the self-hosted WordPress.org for your home business website. This is because the free version is designed for blogs and does not allow selling or advertising, while the self-hosting version is great for small business websites.
The reason WordPress is great for home based businesses is that you can design a very nice, professionally looking site with no web design experience. Simply use a free or paid template, or theme, and upload your logo and images. That’s all you need for a great looking website.

WordPress is a free open source Web-based software which means you don’t have to buy any software. You can also log into your website using any computer making it easy to edit your site and moderate comments on the go. WordPress is also great for Search Engine Optimization(SEO) and allows your home business website to rank well without being an SEO expert.

Here are some things you should include in your home based business website:

Testimonials and samples of your work. Ask your customers to provide you with statements about your product or service and how it benefited them. They can talk about their experience with you or how you have increased their business profits, sales or any other relevant benefit. Place this information on your website; it is a great (and free!) way to advertise to others. Happy customers will be pleased to provide you with a review, so don’t hesitate to ask.
The homepage of your business website should be an advertisement for your business. While this doesn’t mean you should go for over-the-top, flashy presentation, you should make sure your content points out why they want to explore your website. Why do you stand out among your competition and why would they want to do business with you?

Contact Information should be easy to find anywhere on your website. Use a legitimate email address for your home business that includes your domain name. If your business email address is from a free email account, potential clients can get the impression your business is a just hobby. Good website hosting companies will provide you with free email accounts for your domain. If you prefer using a Gmail or other free email account, it’s very easy to forward your emails to your free account where you can check them conveniently. Your clients will not know and will only see your domain email address.

For your protection over the Internet, you can use a post office box for your business address and avoid using your home address on your website and business cards. For your website’s domain name, make sure that the registrar can and will keep your home address private, or instead, give the post office box address. This is for your family’s protection.

Starting a home business is a very exciting move that can greatly improve your future but it should not cost a fortune. By creating your own home business website, you can save a considerable amount of money that could be spent on equipment, advertising or anything else you need to start your home based business. Fortunately today WordPress offers an economical and viable option for many.

Learn more about creating your own affordable home business website…

Building A Home Business You Can Be Proud Of

Building A Home Business You Can Be Proud Of

If you want to create a successful home business, then you want to learn as much as you can about how to start and build a home business doing something you are good at and enjoy doing.

Here are some reasons you may want to start a home business.

Avoid Home Business Opportunity Scams

Be aware of scams when you look into working from home. Many scams exist that will do anything to get money from you. They may offer work-at-home opportunities or big lists of jobs or some other offer that will allegedly make you fast, easy money. If it sounds too good to be true…it is. The best way to make money at home is to start your own home business and find your own work.

But, be sure you take your home business seriously from the start and don’t treat it like a hobby. When you work at home you will need an office space. Your office doesn’t need to be huge, but it does need to be inviting and functional. Your home office should be a place where you can feel calm, productive, inspired and efficient. Don’t worry about the size, you can make do with whatever space you have.

Take breaks. Keeping a home business going can take a lot of work, and many home business owners work non-stop as long as they can. This is a mistake. Taking regular breaks is actually more likely to help your focus and productivity.

Extra Money

If you have some experience and administrative skills, you can start a home business as a Virtual Assistant. There are so many services you can provide businesses today and it’s possible for most people to find something they can do for businesses who are looking to outsource. Another great advantage to running a home business is they are far less expensive than other traditional businesses or franchises.

Tax Deductions

Tax benefits are another great reason to start a home based business. You can make money working from your home while you save on gas, clothing, childcare and eating out expenses while you enjoy some tax benefits of writing off many of your business expenses. A home based business is one of the best tax benefits for many people, just be sure to keep your financial records organized.

When it comes to taxes and your home business, you want to be sure that you are keeping with the guidelines that the IRS provides. This is important because if you do not play by their rules, you could either miss out on extra money available, or you could get in serious tax trouble by not following procedures.

Working From Home With Children

If you have young children and are looking for a way to avoid paying for child care, a home business may be the answer for your family. You will be able to work from home and care for your child while earning an income for the family. This can be challenging though, and you may need some help during the day with your children and/or housework; however, it can be much less costly than full-time daycare.

Be Your Own Boss

Being your own boss and building a successful home based business can be extremly rewarding and one of your greatest accomplishments.  If you are self-discplined and determined, there is no reason you cannot become very successful.

Learn more about creating your own home business as a Virtual Assistant…

 

Affordable Health Insurance for Self-employed Professionals and Home Based Businesses

Health insurance for self-employed professionals

Health insurance for self-employed professionals is often a big concern. Many people continue to work at jobs they hate or don’t pay well simply to keep their medical benefits. This is a real problem today but there are some solutions. Hopefully as more and more people choose to freelance and work at home based businesses, the health insurance options will improve.

There are some options for affordable health insurance for small business owners if you do your research.

 

Read more…


Do You Need a Home Based Business Tax Deduction?

Do You Need a Home Based Business Tax Deduction?

One of the best reasons to start a home based business is the tax decution benefits. Of  course the other reason is to make some much needed money – either a full-time or part-time income. The tax deductions make working from home an even better deal.

Not only can you save money on gas, professional clothing, eating out and childcare expenses, a home based business like becoming a virtual assistant allows you to deduct many business expenses and reduce your taxable income.

Read more…