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        ============================================================
                                           A Home-Based Business Online
        ============================================================

                          
                                

                                                        May 28

                                               Sent to 4,737 subscribers

                                                  Editor: Elena Fawkner
                                            Publisher: AHBBO Publishing
                                               
                                              Contact By Email

        ============================================================

        ============================================================
                                                  IN THIS ISSUE
        ============================================================

        1. Welcome and Update from Elena
        2. Home-Based Business Idea of the Week - Packing/
         Unpacking Service
        3. Feature Article - Creating A Corporate Office Image
         From Your Spare Bedroom
        4. Web Watch - Internet Privacy Laws and Children
        5. Pro-motion Column - Answers for the "Pro in Motion"
        6. Free E-Book of the Week - Secrets of Business In
         the New Millennium
        7. Subscriber Q&A - When You Don't Get Paid By
         Your Check/Credit Card Processor
        11. Subscription Management
        13. Contact Information
         

        ============================================================
        1. Welcome and Update from Elena
        ============================================================

        Hello again, and a warm welcome to all the new subscribers
        who have joined us since the last issue!

        This is the last of the catch-up issues to make up for the two
        issues I couldn't get to you while I was travelling earlier this
        month.  If you're thinking, "Why can't she just skip a couple of
        weeks?", the reason is commitments to advertisers.

        If you're new to AHBBO and feeling a little overwhelmed
        by the volume and frequency of the AHBBO ezine, hang in
        there.  They don't normally come so thick and fast so save
        them until you have time to get to them.  From here on in
        you'll only get one issue a week.

        We're now only a week away from the launch of the AHBBO
        Build Your Own Website tutorial.  For those of you planning
        to participate, I hope you've given some thought to the subject
        matter of your site so you will be able to get going right along
        with us.  If you're still struggling with this, check out the recent
        AHBBO article, "What's Your Niche?".  It's available by
        autoresponder at .

        You know, I was thinking this weekend that we haven't heard
        any real-life success stories from AHBBO subscribers for a
        while.  Come on guys and gals, someone out there must have
        a home business success story to tell!  Share it with us and
        get some free publicity while you're at it.  Just drop me a line
        at .

        As always, thanks for reading and I hope you enjoy this
        week's issue.

        Remember, this ezine is for YOU! If you have comments
        or suggestions for topics you would like to see addressed,
        or would just like to share your experiences with other
        subscribers, I want to hear from you! Please send comments,
        questions and stories to Contact By Email .
         

        ============================================================
        2. Home-Based Business Idea of the Week - Packing/
         Unpacking Service
        ============================================================

        Are you an organizer by nature?  One of those "everything
        has its place and everything in its place" types?  If so, have
        you thought about offering a packing/unpacking service for
        residential moves?  This is a service in high demand by
        busy professionals who can't afford to take time off work
        to move.

        Here's how the business would work.  Plan to offer a 2 day
        full service.  On day 1 you pack up, on day 2 you coordinate
        the move and unpack.  The idea is that, on moving day, your
        client comes home from work at the end of the day to find
        everything unpacked, put away, plugged in and the house
        generally ready to live in (including made beds).  Of course,
        your client may not require a full service.  They may only
        want you to unpack and put away and attend to the packing
        and coordination of the move themselves.  So structure your
        pricing based on the level of service required.

        At the outset, you should schedule an in-home obligation-
        free consultation with your potential client and discuss
        the services you offer.  Once you have ascertained the
        level of service required by the client clearly explain your
        fee structure.

        As a rough guide, plan to charge an unpacking fee of
        $10-$15 per box.  For a 1-2 bedroom home, anticipate
        30-50 boxes, for 3-4 bedrooms 50-100 boxes.  If you are
        also going to be packing the boxes, strike a dollar rate
        per box.  If you are also going to be coordinating the move
        (greeting the removalists, ensuring furniture and boxes
        are delivered to the correct rooms), your time for this
        service should also be worked into your package price.
        Alternatively, you may prefer to charge by the hour or
        strike a price for the whole job upfront.

        ------

        Useful resources:

        SITE:

        => Busy Buddies, Inc. Moving Services
        http://www.busybuddiesinc.com/
         

        BOOK:

        => Relocation 101: Making the Most of Your Move
        by Beverly D. Roman and Dalene R. Bickel (Editor)

        Available online at Barnes & Noble (http://www.barnesandnoble.com).

        ------

        There are many more ideas like this in AHBBO's Home
        Business Ideas page at
        and Online Business Ideas page at
        with more being added
        all the time.
         

        ============================================================
        3. Feature Article - Creating A Corporate Office Image
            From Your Spare Bedroom
        ============================================================

        Copyright © 2013 by Elena Fawkner

        Like it or not, there is still a segment of the population who
        will erroneously conclude that you and your business are
        less than professional and competent just because you run
        your business out of your home.

        Dumb?  Obviously!  Narrow-minded?  Yes!  Wrong?
        Absolutely!  Unfair? No question!  Want their business?
        Well ... yes.  OK, then you're going to have to play the
        game and beat them at it.  Here's how to do it.  It's a little
        sneaky, but hey, all's fair and they did start it.
         

        INCORPORATE

        First off, incorporate.  Nothing screams "CORPORATE!"
        to our friend the dumb, narrow-minded, wrong, unfair
        Potential Client as an LLC, Pty Ltd or PLC (depending
        on where you conduct business) on your letterhead and
        business card.

        Not only does this appease Potential Client, there are
        some very good tax and other advantages to incorporation
        which are well worth the modest cost.  Talk to your
        attorney or accountant about this.
         

        OFFICE ADDRESS

        The next problem you have with Potential Client is that
        you don't want your home address to give you away.
        What do you think looks more professional in Potential
        Client's eyes:  123 Cherryblossom Way, Apt. 103, Suburbia
        or 123 Major Blvd, Level 37, Big City?

        The answer is a serviced office.  These don't have to
        cost a lot of money if you use them pretty much as a post
        office but they CAN give your business all the big-city
        prestige your Potential Client is looking for.

        An additional advantage is that you can use your serviced
        office to meet with Potential Client.  After all, the last thing
        you want is to have him coming to your REAL office!  Heaven
        forbid!  Most serviced offices will make meeting rooms available
        for a flat fee.
         

        TELEPHONES

        This is probably the trickiest part of all.  How do you know
        it's safe to answer the phone in your home office even though
        the sounds of your young children playing just outside your
        office door will be heard by the caller?  You simply don't.

        There is a simple way of dealing with this.  Only give your
        home office number to existing clients.  They already know
        you are professional and competent and should therefore
        have no issue with the fact that you work from home.

        For anyone else, give out the number of an answering service
        that will answer the call in your company name and can tell
        callers that you're in a meeting with another client and take
        a message.  Your serviced office will offer this service as well.
        You can then return the call at a time when you know
        tell-tale background noise won't give you away.

        In fact, a trick some people who work from home use when
        returning calls is to run a tape of office background noise.
        This both gives the impression you are working in a large
        office AND it masks any slight tell-tale household noises that
        may, despite your best efforts, give you away.

        Once Potential Client becomes an actual client and you've
        proved to his satisfaction that you are professional and
        competent, you can tell him that you've decided to start
        working out of your home to reduce unnecessary overheads
        and give him your direct phone number.

        No matter how enlightened your client-base is as a general
        rule, it is imperative that the telephone be answered in
        a businesslike manner.  I don't care how sympathetic,
        supportive and admiring your clients are of your decision to
        balance your work and family commitments by running a
        successful business from home, there is nothing cute
        about a five year old answering your business line.  It's
        unprofessional, not to mention downright annoying.

        Speaking for myself, I also find it annoying and unprofessional
        for a spouse to answer the business line.  I'd much prefer to
        leave a message with your answering service than your wife
        or husband, thank you very much.  At least I can be sure
        you'll get the message.  But that may just be me ... decide
        for yourself.

        So have a separate phone line for your business and
        lay down the law to your household that no-one, NO-ONE,
        is to answer it but you (unless, of course, you're employing
        your teenage children in your business in which case they
        should be instructed on how to answer the telephone in a
        professional manner).  If you're away from your office,
        divert your calls to your answering service.
         

        EMAIL

        Something else to think about is the image of your email
        address.  Which is Potential Client to consider more
        corporate/professional: maryann@isp.com or
        m.entrepreneur@mycompanyllc.com?

        It's worth spending $35 a year on your own domain name
        just for the professional email address, even if you never
        intend to create a website.  Mind you if you're going to have
        your own domain why NOT create your own website?  But
        that's another article ...
         

        STATIONERY AND PROMOTIONAL MATERIALS

        It goes without saying that your stationery, business cards
        and other promotional materials should reflect a
        professional corporate image.  If you have incorporated
        your business, this is a good start.  A company name on
        letterhead and business cards can't fail to convey a
        professional image provided they are professionally printed
        on quality stationery stock.
         

        OFFICE EQUIPMENT

        There's no point having quality stationery if you're going
        to use a cheap and cheerful inkjet printer for your
        correspondence.  Invest in a medium quality laser printer
        instead.  They don't cost a lot of money these days and
        you can get a unit that triples as a fax machine and
        photocopier for only a few hundred dollars.
         

        So, what do you think?  You may be thinking "I wonder
        whether it's really worth the effort to try and please just a small
        number of potential clients".  Is it worth it?  Maybe.  But look
        back over the suggestions I have made.  Are they really
        anything more than basic, common sense, professional
        business practices?  Regardless of what your potential and
        existing clients may think about the concept of businesses
        run out of their owners' homes, first impressions do count.
        Wouldn't the above approach be a good one to take with ALL
        your potential clients whatever their personal disposition?
        Just something to think about.

        -----

        **Reprinting of this article is welcome!**
        This article may be freely reproduced provided that: (1) you
        use the autoresponder copy which contains a resource box;
        and (2) you leave the resource box intact. To receive a copy
        of this article by autoresponder, just send a blank email to
        .

        ============================================================

        THINK ALL THE GOOD .COM NAMES ARE TAKEN? THINK
        AGAIN!!  Every week thousands of good .com names are
        repossessed by Internic for non-payment.
        Unclaimeddomains.com has the complete list of expired names!
        To see a sample list, click here:

         

        ============================================================
        4. Web Watch - Internet Privacy Laws and Children
        ============================================================

        The (U.S.) Children's Online Privacy Protection Rule came into
        effect on April 21.  If your site "targets" children under 13, or if
        you have actual knowledge that someone providing personal
        information at your site is under 13, this Rule applies to you.

        It is not really clear what constitutes "targeting" in this context
        but if you market your site to children, if it attracts them because
        you have really nifty animated cartoons, really cool banners
        that allow the site visitor to flush Britney Spears down a toilet
        (http://www.clickz.com/cgi-bin/gt/na/mi/gt.052400/index.html),
        or anything else that is reasonably foreseeable to attract children
        under the age of 13, then be careful.

        If you run such a website, to comply with the new regulations
        you must:

        => prominently display a privacy policy which clearly explains
        what information is collected, how personal information will be
        used and the site's disclosure practices in relation to that
        information;

        => make a reasonable effort to obtain parental consent prior
        to the child handing over personal information.  For example,
        a consent form that can be printed, signed by the parent and
        faxed back;

        => allow parents a way to view any information their child
        has submitted;

        => refrain from using games etc. as a way of eliciting
        more personal information than reasonably necessary
        to participate in such activities; and

        => protect the confidentiality and security of all information
        collected.

        States have standing to sue (for compliance) website owners
        who fail to comply with the regulations.

        For the full-text of the regulations, visit the Federal Trade
        Commission's website at http://www.ftc.gov .  In particular,
        it's worth taking a good look at the FTC's Kidz Privacy Page at
        .
        By the way, for a government bureaucracy, this is a pretty
        excellent site!
         

        ============================================================
         

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        put steady cash in your account every day and comes with
        free personalized support from AHBBO. Get yours today!

        ============================================================
        5. Pro-motion - Answers for the "Pro in Motion"
        ============================================================

        by jl scott, ph.d., Director, IAPO

        Q. I'm the publisher of a free online ezine. The larger my
        subscriber base gets the more I receive some very annoying
        emails. It seems that some people subscribe to my ezine
        then begin sending me ads for their products. As an online
        publisher, am I giving them permission to do this?
        (anonymous)

        A. Absolutely not!

        Sometimes we forget that, as publishers, we aren't the only ones
        who need to present ourselves as professionals. Most of our
        subscribers are also involved in an online business of one kind
        or another. As professionals ourselves, we have a right to
        expect our subscribers to act in a like manner.

        Unfortunately some people think it's slick to subscribe to an
        ezine then send their sales message back every time they receive
        an issue. Receiving an issue of an ezine that you subscribed to
        doesn't - I repeat, does NOT - give one the right to use that
        as evidence of a request to receive your sales material.

        Some publishers, like myself, send a welcome message to every
        new subscriber. This welcome message is ALSO not a request to
        receive a sales pitch in return. Those activities are still
        considered "spam." Unacceptable! If reported - the sender can
        still lose their ISP and/or web host.

        I personally UNsubscribe anyone who does this. The minute I get
        an autoresponder (other than a legitimate one informing me of
        someone's unavailability) or any other kind of ad, I throw them
        off my list. If I hear from them again - they are reported.

        Subscribers are certainly welcome to write to me personally. If
        they use a signature file, I'm going to see their offer anyway -
        in a legitimate form. I will not, however, accept
        advertisements just because someone is subscribed to my ezine.

        My advice? Throw 'em off your list and/or report them! They're
        just tire kickers anyway. And, not very honest ones at that.
         

        * To read the answers from our readers to last week's
        question, "How do I build traffic?" - send an email to
        .  I have taken the best
        answers and combined them into one great report.
         

        * To submit questions to "Pro-motion"

        jl scott, ph.d., Author
        Copyright © 2013, All Rights Reserved

        This article may be reprinted with permission by including
        the following resource box:

        ------

        dr. jl scott is the Director of the International Association
        for Professionalism Online (IAPO)
        - and also the publisher of MONDAY
        MEMO! - the ezine dedicated to upgrading Professionalism on
        the Web. For your FREE subscription:
         

        ============================================================
         
         

        ============================================================
        6. Free E-Book of the Week
        ============================================================

        => Secrets of Business In the New Millennium
        by Merle Stinnett (712K)

        A complete guide to running a business easily and
        inexpensively using the 'net.  A stunner!

        ------

        If you're new to A Home-Based Business Online, be sure to
        visit for many more freebies like
        this.

        ============================================================
        7. Subscriber Q&A
        ============================================================

        Diana Ratliff of BizBooklets.com writes:

        "I've used a company, [name deleted, we'll call it NoPay.com],
        to process online checks.  People didn't pay that way too
        often, but still wanted to give people a choice.  Never had any
        problem.  I'd get an email saying someone had paid me and a
        few days later would get a check in the mail.

        Anyway, on 5/10 I had a lady place a $310.00 order
        through NoPay.  I was thrilled, of course, but wanted
        to get the check before I mailed the booklets.

        So I waited ... and waited ... and waited ... and every
        time I checked, the status of her transaction at NoPay.com
        read "In print que."

        I tried e-mailing NoPay.  I faxed them.  (They don't have
        a phone # on their website, just a fax number, 2 email
        addresses, and a po box.  I tried Directory Assistance
        but no phone # listed.)

        Never have heard anything.

        So I reluctantly tried to call the lady who placed the order
        to tell her what was going on.  She wasn't home so I emailed
        her.  Her answer was (and I quote):

        "you took it from my checking account now give it back"

        Got any ideas what I should do?  I emailed the lady back
        and said I didn't have her money, NoPay did, and I tried
        again to call her and speak to her personally but she
        wasn't home.

        How do I pursue this company?  I want to make things right
        for this lady.  Even though I'm not out any merchandise, since
        I hadn't mailed the booklets yet, I sure do LOOK bad right
        now and NoPay.com is not treating either of us fairly."
         

        Diana Ratliff, Your Business Card Consultant
        DON'T HAND OUT another ineffective, money-wasting card!
        http://www.bizbooklets.com
         

                                          ~*~*~*~*~*~
         

        There are two issues here: (1) how to find out who is behind
        a domain name so you can pursue them if necessary; and
        (2) the contractual position as between Diana and her customer.

        OK, first things first: how do you pursue a company
        that doesn't have a phone number or street address on their
        website?  Answer:  Do a "whois" search.  I do mine via the Here's what
        you get back (personal information deleted):

        Registrant:
        [NoPay].com ([Business Name])
        [Street Address]

        Domain Name: [NOPAY].COM

        Administrative Contact, Technical Contact, Zone
        Contact, Billing Contact:
        [Name] [Email Address]
        [Street Address]
        [Telephone Number] [Fax Number]

        Record last updated on 06-Nov-1998.
        Record expires on 08-Oct-2016.
        Record created on 08-Oct-1998.
        Database last updated on 25-May-2013 19:31:09 EDT.

        Domain servers in listed order:

        SERVER1.[WEBHOST] [IP ADDRESS]
        SERVER2.[WEBHOST] [IP ADDRESS]

        So that tells you who's behind a domain name and their
        contact details.  For what that's worth.  If they've skipped
        town or otherwise can't be located, you'd want to be owed
        a significant amount of money before you even thought
        about starting legal proceedings.  More likely than not
        someone who pulls a stunt like this is going to be flat broke
        anyway.

        The second issue is: what are Diana's obligations to her
        customer?  In her email, Diana takes comfort from the fact
        that she's not "out any merchandise yet, because I hadn't
        mailed the booklets yet".  Unfortunately for Diana, things
        may not be that simple.

        Now, obviously, if it's not too late to do so, Diana should
        ask her customer to contact her bank and put a stop on
        the check.  But if it's too late for that, and the check's
        already been honored, Diana may have no choice but to fill
        the order anyway even though she may never see a cent
        of her money.

        This will be the case if NoPay.com was acting as Diana's
        agent in collecting funds from Diana's customer on her
        behalf (which is almost certainly the case).   The customer
        has paid Diana's agent for the products ordered and did so
        because this was a payment option that Diana made available
        to her customers.  Whether Diana ultimately gets paid is a
        matter for her and NoPay.com.  The customer has paid Diana
        via her agent (NoPay.com) and the fact that NoPay.com
        has failed to pay Diana doesn't touch upon that.  If payment
        by the customer was all she was required to do to fulfill her
        side of the contract with Diana, then Diana has an
        obligation to complete her side of the contract by forwarding
        the merchandise paid for.

        If you want to protect yourself from this sort of situation, a neat
        lawyer's solution would be to include in your terms of supply a
        clause to the effect that: (1) goods will only be shipped upon
        receipt of payment and (2) payment will be deemed received
        only when actually received from the check/credit card
        processor.  This effectively throws the risk of non-payment
        back onto the customer.

        As is often the case, however, the neat lawyer's solution
        may not be a neat solution at all for a small business
        concerned more than anything with customer service and
        customer relationships.  I would suggest that the better policy
        is to accept that there is a business risk that a check or
        credit card processor may fail, for whatever reason, to pay
        you what you're owed and that if that happens, then it's a cost
        of doing business.  The best you can do is try and minimize
        your business risk by contracting only with established,
        reputable companies.

        ------

        If YOU have a question for the Q&A segment, send it along! .

        ============================================================
        11. Subscription Management
        ============================================================
         

        To SUBSCRIBE to this Newsletter:
        Home Business Newsletter

        To UNSUBSCRIBE from this Newsletter:
        http://ahbbo.com/privacy.html#unsubscribe

        If you find this newsletter valuable, please forward it
        in its entirety to your friends, family and associates!
         

        ============================================================
        13. Contact Information
        ============================================================

        Elena Fawkner, Editor
        A Home-Based Business Online
        Contact By Email

        ============================================================

        Copyright © 1999-2016 AHBBO Publishing
        All Rights Reserved

        Copyright 1998-2017, AHBBO.com. All rights are reserved. Monday, 25-Jan-2021 21:56:22 CST

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