Home Business: Additional Sources of Income

If you are looking for an additional business system to earn for you some extra money, why not start up a business at home itself. Today there are various ways one can make good additional income from home. Home business has predominantly increased in the recent years because of its scope and flexibility. Unlike the regular office job, home business is not time dependent for running successfully. All it requires is a good understanding of what business you should start and how to make your business reach the market.

Most home business systems however are dependent on the Internet. So, primarily it is important that you have a computer and a good internet facility at home. Nevertheless, having an internet connection and computer will help you enlarge your network across many location and ultimately across the globe. The entire business set up you plan depends on what product or service you are capable of selling. There are various streams of home business that you can choose from depending your experience, skills, or knowledge.

Affiliate Marketing

One of the most established home business includes affiliate marketing. In this business, you basically contribute selling products and services of other brands through your own web site. This business works best for people having a strong understanding of such marketing strategies. This kind of business is even more appealing, if you have knowledge of what products to choose for promoting. The more the product is sold, the higher revenue is generated by the owner of the product. A small part of that revenue is the remuneration for your contribution. So, it is vital that you know which products are in demand and how to promote them through your web site. The faster the product sale is, the higher your earnings are.

Direct Product Selling

Direct product selling is different from affiliate marketing in that you have to sell your own products. However, there are two different approaches in this stream of home business.

Selling Used Products

First, you can sell all unused household stuff through some online shopping site, such as e-bay. It is likely that there are certain products always lying at home unused but may be helpful for other people in your locality or other areas. In this approach you may need to do minor repairing of the products to make them worth usable. You must also do some good researching in finding potential buyers to purchase your product for the cost you quote.

Selling New Products

Second, you can create new products and sell them in the market, either in person or online. This approach of home business is applied to certain skilled people. For example, if you are skilled in creating software or hardware that can help your neighbors avoid spending for similar but expensive products, you are good to start a suitable home business. Most home mothers are good in making jewelry. Jewelry is something that every neighboring woman would love to purchase without having to move around in a busy market. There are many such products people find hard to find in markets. So selling new or used products can be one of the suitable home businesses for some additional income. However, you need to spend quality time in widening your products and promoting them efficiently.

Writing and Publishing

Are you a good writer and do you understand what many of the readers prefer reading? If so, let your writing skills make a good business for you at home at your own comfortable time. There are various websites that allow you to publish relevant articles from a variety of topics. While readers navigate through the Internet (say Google), they click the links displayed to read an entire topic. So, if the link is the link to the article you have written and published, you gain traffic to your web page. It is important that your article is reader-friendly, simple, and based on some current trending topics. You should also know how to pull traffic to your web page. Many ad campaign services, such as Google Adsense, Kontera, etc., also generate revenue when people visit their posts while going through your webpage. Based on the number of visitors to your article page and the revenue generated by the ad services, your income is calculated. Therefore, it is important that your article must have maximum traffic to make a good extra income for you.

You can also write a helpful e-book and publish on various websites or even sell them through websites, such as Docstoc and Constant Content. E-book business has been a most reliable source of additional income.

So, by utilizing your writing skills you can spare a few hours of your day and writing articles and publish them daily. To publish an e-book, you will need to spend time regularly to complete writing an e-book with quality and useful information and then make it worth selling.

Freelancing Services

Freelancing jobs are predominant nowadays because it results in immediate access to your earnings. There are various websites posting freelancing jobs where the client posts the desired job for a fixed or hourly price and contractors bid on the job with an amount they think they can work for. One or more suitable candidates get the job to be completed within a specified timeline for a finalized price. Even this home business requires a computer with internet facility so that one can find a suitable freelancing job and communicate with the client as and when required.

Catering Services

Another important and interesting home business streams is providing catering services. In localities where students or employees staying alone have no time to cook their own food, one can offer to prepare food for them at a nominal price. In many offices, employees require good food from a reliable caterer. Catering services can be done at your home if you have the minimum space required to meet the needs of setting up this business. In the beginning, you can do it alone if the number of customers is less. However, as your home business grows, you may need to hire people to join your business so that you can run your catering service effectively.

Door-To-Door Service Offering

Door-to-door service offering is an open-ended business. This kind of business may not always be done from your home, but your home is the best place to start this kind of business. The various services that you can provide in this approach include:

  • Tutoring school kids
  • Counseling people in your locality for higher education of their children
  • Providing support for gardening at your neighbors’ garden
  • Looking after working couple’s kids as in daycare
  • Working as a financial advisor or insurance advisor

The scope of home business is vast in terms of finding a suitable business stream to start right from your home. But the success of home business greatly depends on your skills, knowledge, interest, and efforts. Like every business, home business requires a well defined plan for execution. Start making extra income by setting up a suitable home business stream.

Electrical Contractor Business Ideas

I would like to share with you some electrical contractor business ideas.

I will be sharing some ideas that you may want to think about if you are currently in business as an electrical contractor. Or if you plan on going into business in the future. Electrical contractor business ideas are just that, ideas.

But what about the electrical contractors that have followed proven methods for profitability, time freedom, and business systems. We could say that those business principles are ideas. But at some point when company after company after company create success, with those business systems. Those ideas become solid business principles that are proven to work time and time again.

I would like to go over some of those electrical business principles with you. Here I will list in bullet points some of the electrical contractor business ideas that I will be going over.

I wish I could just write one article and cover all of the basis that you need in order to have a solid foundation for your electrical business. I will list out the items I will cover. Check back often, as I will go through each one step by step.

I already know that almost everyone reading this, that owns an electrical contracting business will want to know what are the secrets to marketing.

How do I get the phone to ring?
How to get more jobs?
How do I find the best electricians?
How do I make higher profits?
How do I control labor and material cost?
How do I market correctly to increase my call volume during the slow time?
What is the silver bullet? Just give me the silver bullet.

These are all very good questions, and I will answer all of them. But what a lot of electrical contractors don’t understand or simply refuse to address is that it’s what you do that makes all of those things happen in your business.

So if you are someone who thinks that you can skip the small stuff, bypass the systems, ignore business numbers and systems then reading this is not for you.

But if you are tired of –
Feeling like you’re going in circles.
Tired of not having time to do much of anything outside of your business life.
Tired of not making the profits you know you should.
Tired of feeling like you are all alone in getting your business to that next level.
Tired of having huge gross profits, but small net profit.

Tired of being the marketer, book-keeper, electrician, call taker, etc etc.

Then read below and let me walk you through the first part of the system that has worked for so many other electrical companies.

Electrical contractor business ideas

Here are the subjects we will be training on and going over, in no specific order.

Marketing plan specifically for electrical businesses.
Understanding, tracking, and using your business numbers. (The 11 numbers you must know.)
Examining the health of your business as it is today. (The 20 vital statistics.)
How to increase profit in your business.
How to get more business because of your price increase. (I know that one sounds crazy.) Just wait!
Planning for growth
having a specific business plan that goes from where you are to where you want to be.
Managing employees.
Proper steps to go from a 1 man shop to 10 and maintain a very high profitability.
Daily performance reports
Developing a training plan.
Analyzing how your local market thinks about your business and what you offer.
Developing operational excellence.
Developing an exit strategy to sell or hand over your successful operation.
And much more…

Today I would like to start by asking you. When was the last time you sat down and seriously thought about what you want your electrical business to look like? And how much would you like to make in pure profit 5 years from now.

This is where I like to start, because I’m sure we all know of those electrical contractor business ideas or plans that went something like this.

They started their business 25-30 years ago. They are still working out in the field. They have to be there every day and are tired of dealing with putting out fires all day. Their bank account goes up and down just like their call volume does. They have very little or no retirement and drive a service truck that doubles as their personal vehicle. They have no idea who will buy the business after all those years of hard work and dedication, because without them the company will fold.

I could go on but the point is that regardless of where you are at today, you will only get to where you want to go if you know exactly where you want to be.

I will get to the meat like marketing etc, in another article but for now just take some time, sit down and think about how much money you would like to make. Is it 200,000 in pure profit? maybe it’s 1million in profit. What do you want to make? Write that number down.

Next think about how often you would like to come in to the office 2 hours per day, 1 time per week, 1 time per month, one time every 3 months. Even if you are there 12 hours per day now. Even if your current office is your home. It does not matter. just picture what and where you want it to be. Write down how much time you would like to spend working in the business.

If you do or don’t have a commercial office location, then what will that office look like? NOTE!!! on the office. Most electrical business owners do not see their business office as an asset. The electrical business will pay off this commercial property and you will be able to sell it at a profit when that time comes. Some people split up the building and rent out multiple commercial units for long term income month after month. Write down what that office building will look like.

Think about how well your business is running with systems. Even if you are currently are a 1 man shop. Think about and picture your electricians coming in the morning. How well the operations manager gets them in and out. how well the president that you put in place to do your task runs the company. think about how you can pull up any data that you want about your business numbers and operation on the internet from anywhere in the world. Write out exactly how your business flows and operates like a well oiled machine.

Now that you have a thought about how you want your company to operate and have your 5 year goals written out in detail. We can move on to the next subject. In my next article I will be discussing if you should go up in price and the common misconceptions that are associated with your product and service pricing.

“Taking your electrical business to profit ( on the fast track)”

P.S. If there are any specific areas of your electrical business that you need assistance with feel free to call or email me, and of course it will be (on the house.)

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Estimating Software Programs Give Contractors the Tools to Compete

The technology explosion has changed the construction industry fundamentally and irrevocably. No single task impacts contractors today more than estimating yet the number one reason construction companies lose money results directly from untimely and inaccurate estimates.

While we at Construction Digital still talk with veteran company principals who reflect wistfully about the days of paper, a slower pace of conducting business, and getting by on guile and the seat of their pants, none are naïve enough to ignore the need to embrace technology at every level if they are to remain successful.

Speed, efficiency, cost management and guaranteed ROI is the name of the game – especially in a recessionary economy where more companies are competing for fewer jobs – and that starts with the abundant availability of bid estimating software that offers industry-specific solutions with advanced integration capabilities and ease of use. Many of the top general contracting firms now have secure online bid rooms that allow subcontractors to download and review specs before submitting their bid on jobs.

Here are some of the top products available to contractors today. Though not inexpensive, once implemented they generally pay for themselves in short order.

ProEst® was developed by Construction Management Software, which has been developing software for construction companies since 1976. ProEst® is in use by more than 6,500 firms and produces quick, accurate and competitive bids. Built on Microsoft SQL technology, ProEst®can be integrated with most leading accounting programs, implemented across trades and features industry-specific templates and localized, updated databases.

ProEst® also comes with pre-built databases for general, electrical and mechanical contractors and can be customized to fit the requirements of niche businesses. ProEst®also runs RS Means, required for companies working with government agencies. RS Means databases are complete with city indexes that are used to accurately calculate costs for specific cities or regions.

Bid4Build is a recognized industry leader and winner of numerous awards. User friendly and designed for general and subcontractors of all sizes and specialties, Bid4Build relies on an extensive database that generates bids, creates cost estimates and reports quickly and accurately across a broad range of projects.

The program’s Estimate Advisor Wizard walks users through a five-step process for building an estimate. Perhaps Bid4Build’s most attractive feature is the fact its extensive item cost database can be customized by adding, deleting or changing both line entries and line item costs.

Sage estimating tools have long ranked among the industry’s most respected and reliable. Sage Timberline Office construction software provides tools such as multiple take-off options, specific pricing databases and integration with accounting systems that build profitability into each job. The databases are easily modified to fit company-specific requirements. Timberline Office also provides the capability of integrating with RS Means for working with government agencies.

On Center Software was founded in 1988 by a group of construction professionals. Since then the company has been driven in its development of fast and accurate takeoff and bidding software. The company’s premier program, On-Screen Takeoff Professional®, is reputedly capable of cutting takeoff time in half because of the speed with which it allows the user to count objects, measure straight and curved lengths, and calculate area and volume. That efficiency in turn theoretically translates into the opportunity to bid on more jobs and enhance the bottom line.

PlanSwift boldly touts itself as “the No. 1 construction takeoff and estimating software” on its website. Applicable to both the commercial and residential sectors, this relatively inexpensive point-and-click program has a small learning curve and is easy to use.

Clear Estimates works from a database crafted by RemodelMAX and can be customized to fit the needs of any trade. The program quickly determines project cost and produces a variety of reports and proposals. The program maintains customer and project databases, processes change order, integrates with QuickBooks Pro and updates price information via an automated price updating service.

Among sector-specific programs, BID2WIN is designed to manage the estimating and bidding processes for heavy/highway contractors. Driven by a Microsoft SQL Server database, it can sustain more than 1,000 simultaneous users without diminished performance.

Favored among electrical contractors, McCormick Systems, Inc. was founded by an electrical contractor and has been developing award-winning estimating software for all facets of the industry — residential, commercial, industrial, institutional, and single story to multi-story – for nearly 30 years. With five different estimating systems, McCormick can provide the right solution for companies of any size, ranging from the one-man shop to the global powerhouse.