Value Added Links–Great Resources For Your Orange County Business

These are websites that offer value to business owners.  None of the businesses below have paid to be on this page.  Except for the items displayed in Amazon boxes, we do not receive any compensation for placing links on this site.

Cut Your Business Costs

 Advertising on the cheep

  • www.OCBusinessforsale.com This is our sister site. Use these Free Classified Ad postings if you want to sell your business, start a business and would like to network with others in the OC business community, or if you are looking for a partner or investor.  This is a 100% free website–there are on extra fees.  You can ad links, photos and up to 2,000 characters of advertising for free.  Each ad creates a webpage that can be found on Google, Bing or Yahoo.
  • We have moved the free advertising information here.

Credit Card Processing

  •  https://www.costcopaymentprocessing.com Costco’s credit card processing service.  Less than 1.25% charge for regular transactions and less than 2% for internet transactions plus a $0.12 per swipe fee.  You can buy terminals for your smartphone or in store use.  Sam’s Club partner has about the same costs.   This can be a good alternative to the higher costs of a business bank account.
  • Another alternative is a new service that intuit came out with–GoPayment. The beauty of this system is that there is not equipment to buy, you don’t have to sign up for a high-fee business bank account, you won’t get locked into a long term contract, and it takes all the big credit cards.  All you need is a smart phone. It’s free, and you don’t have to get a special business account at your bank.  If you have transactions < $1,000/month it costs 3.7%.  If you buy a card reader the fee drops to 2.7%.  And if you do a lot of business, you have the option of buying down the transaction charge to 1.7% for $12.95/month.
  • Square offers free equipment (works off your cell phone) and no need to get locked into a merchant account.  (No account fees)  They charge 2.75 and take all the big credit cards including Amex.

Computer Equipment

Computers  The dilemma with buying computers is do you buy the most advanced computers that will last for a long time or do you save a few bucks and buy a cheaper model.  A lot of people agree that you should stick with the major brands because if it need to be repaired, parts will be easy to find; and the repair person will have dealt with similar issues before.  Apple and Dell both offer deals on computers that have been refurbished by the company.

Cartridge World is can refill your print powder cartilages for about 1/2 the cost of buying new at the office supply store.  (Costco has also gotten into this business.)  If you are using a laser printer/fax/copiers, this could save you hundreds of dollars a year.  Check out their website for special offers and google Cartridge World Los Alimitos for google coupons to save a few more bucks.

Glass

  • Eventually, the little want to be gang members will do graffiti on your store front window–especially in South County where they are becoming more prevalent.  Rather than replace the glass, contact http://threescompanyservices.com/ and get it buffed out for less than half the cost.

Internet Access

  • Check out Clear Wire  http://www.clear.com/  (Also hidden away from the rest of the cellphones at Best Buy.)  The offer really fast 4G LTE service that you can take with you.  You pay less than for business internet, and you can use a 3rd party VOIP service to make phone calls.  The other advantage is that you can take it with you.  It works so well, some people are cancelling their regular internet service.  Its just now coming to CA, and might not work in you business location, but you can try it out and return it.  Also you are not locked into a contract.  If it doesn’t work for you, you won’t be paying for the next 12 months.  Check out this Clark Howard video — about a year old .  NetZero basically has the same deal.

Phone Service

Times have changed; you have choices.  And you can save a lot of money.  Before you call the “phone company” remember because you are classified as a “business” by you address you will be paying a high “business line” rate.  For some reason it’s more expensive to talk about business stuff than personal stuff.  And you will also pay extra for installation.  A business with three regular “business” phone lines and a fax line might easily be writing out a $200 check to the phone company every month.  But if you have internet (DSL, Cable, or 4G LTE service) you are already paying for a big data pipe that can easily handle your phone calls.  Voice, video, web pages, numbers are all basically data.

  • Cable TV.  Many cable TV companies now service businesses.  You can get a higher speed internet connection than you can with the phone company, and it will generally cost less.  You can also get their “voice” or phone service, but that will cost about the same as the phone company.
  • Cell Service  A lot of business people just get another cell phone for their business.  The advantage of another line is you can turn it off after work, and if you sell your business you can give the buyer a business number.  You can save money by using a third party phone company.  Your calls go over the same network as the big two, but it’s cheaper and there is not contract termination drama.  If it doesn’t work out, you can always transfer your business number to another  company.  One good store that has most of the independent brands is www.OCcellPhoneStore.com  (Their website is out of date, but basically they can get you the phone you want for a lot less than you would pay with one of the big four carriers.  They shop the contracts with the other carriers which the FCC forces the big four to carry over their networks to find the best deal. )
  • VOIP  And if you go with VOIP from a cable company, you will pay about the same.  If you really need to save money, consider getting “naked internet” from the phone/cable/4G wireless company and going with a VOIP (Voice over Internet Portical–you make phone calls over the internet and they get pushed to the regular phone lines.)  The best known service is MagicJack that costs about $2/month and Vonage which is about half the cost of the phone company and includes a lot of other features.  (My vonage line actually is more clear than the real phone line it replaced.)  And you get all the goodies included–caller id, unlimited calling, fax service …  Vonage even takes e-mails you your phone messages and converts spoken English to text.  Another advantage of VOIP is that you can take it with you if you move or decide to work away from home.  The deal is that they have “residential”  and “business” service, but they don’t go out of their way to stop you from using the residential plan for your business.  Another company that does the same sort of thing is Ooma.  Their premier product does what Vonage does but for only $10/month and they also have a free line option.  Both companies charge you for their equipment, and you can bring your existing phone number over.

Prototypes and Sample Products

A Lake Forest GROWit company can 3D print prototypes and sample products for your business.  It’s amazing what they can “print”  Click her for an article about 3D printing

Supplies — Food

  • In addition to Costco and Sam’s Club, check out Restaurant Depot has locations in Anaheim and Fountain Valley.  This is where restaurants to to shop.

Real Estate Information

 

  • www.loopnet.com The place to start looking for renting business space.  It’s like the MLS for commercial space but its open to everyone.  The basic membership ($70) is worth the cost for a couple of months if you are seriously looking for space.

Website

  • It’s hard to beat free.  Free Web Site So the best deal out there for a free basic website is from Google.  They are offering California Businesses a free website!  And that’s with easy to use templates, a free domain name (www.MyBusinessName.com)  After a year you pay for it, but it’s still cheaper than many of their competitiors.  How can they do this?  Well, they can do what ever they want.  But the deal is that you will want to spend money on internet advertising and you will also want to by services from their “partners” eventually so think of the FREE website as being similar to the discounted Polaroid Cameras.  They are buying your loyalty.   That said we don’t want to knock Google Ads.  They really do work.

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