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April 30, 2018

Who is getting clicks in 2018?

Filed under: Marketing Articles — admin @ 10:17 am

Interpreting clicks is complicated and is a loaded subject. Those who are certified by 123notary get more clicks than the others, however, many do not click on them for fear that they might be expensive which is a realistic fear. The numbers below are based on limited data as I did not want to spend all day long averaging numbers. It is just to give you some sort of an idea. Clicks do not translate directly into jobs. Certified members get more high paying jobs but do not necessarily get more clicks.

High Listings
Elite Members 1.75 clicks/day average
Certified 1.57 clicks/day average
Not Certified 1.59 clicks/day average
Poor Stats 1.23 clicks/day average (notaries with failing test scores)

Conclusion
Elite members have a definitive advantage as users regard them as being the masters of their trade which is true. Only 100 of our 6000 currently listed members are Elite Certified and it is very hard to pass the test. So, it really makes you stand out. Then there were people who miserably failed our notary quiz with around 40% or less who are getting a lot fewer clicks per day. There was no definitive difference between those who were not certified who did reasonably on the notary quiz and those who are certified. Users do not value knowledge of documents that much but do value general notary knowledge to a particular extent.

Medium Members
Elite 1.56 clicks per day
Cert 1.3 clicks per day
Uncert 1.2 clicks per day
Bad Stats .96 clicks per day (notaries with failing test scores)

Interpretation
This time there was measurable difference in the clicks of certified members and an even bigger increase in clicks for those who are elite certified. Those Notaries who failed our Notary test were distinctive in their low clicks as users do value basic knowledge. One of the reasons that our elite certification is not more valued is that the elite members are expensive, and still do not have a 100% knowledge of the notary process or documents even though they are close. Maybe with more refinement of my certifications they will get more weight.

It seems that the most important thing is to try to make sure Notaries score at least 50% on their notary quiz to ensure happy users on our site.

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You might also like:

How does pricing for top spots on 123notary work?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19355

Which Notary Directories get the high paying signings?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19201

Answering the call and then not wanting to talk
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19640

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April 29, 2018

Do I need $1 million (E&O) insurance to get more Notary business?

Do I need $100,000 or $1 million in Errors & Omission (E&O) insurance to get more Notary business?
It is not uncommon for some companies to require that a Notary have more than the standard amount of E&O Insurance. There is no state mandated minimum for E&O unlike a Notary Bond where the law requires every Notary to file an official bond for $15,000 which is designed to pay limited claims against the Notary Public.

But please make no mistake. All Notaries must carry some form of E&O insurance to protect themselves from unintentional errors and omissions they make. Of course, E&O policies will not cover fraudulent acts or intentional errors. Without E&O Insurance, you will have to pay for the cost of the judgment or settlement and your own legal expenses. The financial impact can force a Notary to renounce his/her Notary commission and possibly even declare bankruptcy depending upon then severity of the error.

The high coverage of an E&O policy is based on the false perception that the companies would get a better class of Notary or that they are protected from any and all errors made by the Notary. This is farthest from the truth. I have more than 20 years of experience being a Notary and have never increased my E&O Insurance above the standard amount of $15,000/- primarily for 2 reasons. First, the number of companies requiring $100,000 or even $1 million in E&O Insurance are few and far between and the number of jobs that a Notary gets does not make up for the increased premium for the additional coverage. Second, the E&O policy only covers clerical errors and does not cover any fraudulent acts committed by the Notary. As a matter of practice, I double and sometimes triple check my work and am always cautious of the people who appear before me for a notarization. More importantly, I never do anything that even has the appearance of a scam or fraud. I have no intention of being someone’s boyfriend with no escape clause!!

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You might also like:

The 30 point course – beneficial interest and E&O Insurance
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=14532

Posts about E&O Insurance
http://blog.123notary.com/?tag=eo-insurance

Help, I’m being sued, and E&O insurance won’t help!
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=3570

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April 7, 2018

When You Might Need a Notary Public When Traveling

Filed under: Marketing Articles — admin @ 11:08 am

When You Might Need a Notary Public When Traveling

Even if you are a person who travels fairly regularly for pleasure, you may never have thought of the fact that the day might come in which you need to access the services of a notary public while on a trip. There are, in fact, a variety of situations in which you might require the services of a notary public while you are traveling for one reason or another.

The situation is different if you travel for business. The reality is that if you do travel for business, the reality is that you may require the services of a notary public when you are on a business trip.

Business Trips and Notaries Public

There are a wide array of different situations in which you might require the assistance of notary public while on a business trip. For example, if part of your business trip is to address contact issues, a notary might be needed if a contract is to be signed. Keep in mind that in many instances a notary public is not required when a contract is signed. Oftentimes, whether a notary is needed depends on the terms and conditions of a contract itself.

If a notary is needed while you are on a business trip, you may be able to find an available notary public at the hotel in which you are lodged. This is not always the case. However, larger hotel chains are responsive to the needs of their business travelers, including the development of business centers in these properties.

You may be able to access a notary public through a hotel’s business center. Failing that, check with the front desk. If that proves to be futile, track down the hotel concierge. He or she will be able to help you connect with a notary public.

These instructions for finding a notary public while on a business trip can also prove helpful if you end up needing this type of assistance while on a pleasure trip as well.

Pleasure Trips and the Need for a Notary

Odds are that on most pleasure trips, the need for a notary public will not arise. However, depending on the state in which you are traveling, and the type of document you might have to sign, the need for a notary public may arise.

One situation in which the need for the services of a power of attorney may arise while traveling is if you need to establish what is known in most states as a durable power of attorney for healthcare. This is a legal instrument that designates another person to make medical decisions on your behalf if you are unable to do so.

If you, or a traveling companion, end up with a medical issue while traveling, you or your companion may end up needing surgery or some other type of treatment. The recommendation may be that you complete an appropriate healthcare power of attorney in advance of the procedure. Depending on the laws of the state in which you are in, you may need a notary public to attest to your signature on the instrument.

If you are traveling and come upon an automobile or piece or real estate that you elect to purchase, you will need the assistance of a notary public. The title to a car as well as the title to real estate and other documents will require notarization.

What You Need to Obtain a Notarization of Your Signature

You will need to have an appropriate form of identification to obtain a notarization of your signature. When traveling, one of three different types of identification will suffice for the purposes of obtaining a notarization of your signature. These include a driver’s license, a state identification or ID card, or a passport. These types of identification must be current and cannot be expired. You will not be required to produce multiple forms of identification for the purposes of obtaining notary services provided you have one or another of these forms of official identification.

Notary Fees

The issue of whether or not you will need to pay a fee to get something notarized while traveling depends upon a variety of factors. The key really is the circumstances upon which you need a notary and how you access the services of a notary public.

If need a notary for a medical power of attorney, the hospital or medical center will have a notary public on staff. There will be no charge for the notarization of your signature in this and similar types of situations.

Jessica Kane is a professional blogger who writes for Documents International LLC, a leading apostille service for individuals and businesses.

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March 27, 2018

Does knowledge matter any more as a signing agent?

any Notaries are telling me that nobody tests them and nobody cares if they know anything. My clicks reveal that when I started my career as a directory owner that knowledge mattered a lot more. Now it still matters, but not as much.

Ten years ago a certified signing agent on 123notary would get more than double the clicks that an uncertified member in a similar position would get.

Now, even an Elite certified 123notary member gets only 80% more clicks than the absolute most notarially illiterate members.

So, knowledge still matters, just not as much.

However, I feel it is undignified not to be an expert at notary matters if you are a notary. Additionally, you can get into legal trouble if you are sloppy in your notary work. Failing to fill out:

Additional Information sections in Acknowledgments can lead to fraud that could get you subpoenaed!

Not keeping a journal can get you pegged as a suspect in identity fraud cases. It can also get you in trouble if someone forges your seal impression, your lack of a journal makes it look like you were the one that notarized the document in question.

Not keeping a journal correctly can lead to other problems. If you cram five documents in a single journal entry, the borrower could come back in court saying they only authorized you to notarize one of the documents. Since there is only one journal signature for five documents you won’t even know which document was authorized and bingo — you are a suspect in mortgage fraud — congratulations.

Not abiding by prudent practices identifying people with name variations can land you in court.

Making clerical mistakes filling out notarial forms can get you fired or sued

Saying no under the wrong circumstances can get you sued. Additionally, saying no under the correct circumstances but not properly explaining why can get you sued, and successfully sued.

So be careful and be an expert at Notary work. If you don’t know your loan documents, nobody cares. But, we do care if you know how to be a notary and follow directions and be polite and login to your listing regularly.

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You might also like:

123notary Loan Signing Courses
http://www.123notary.com/loan_signing_courses.html

Compilation of Certification posts
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=16264

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January 8, 2018

Calling during a hurricane

Filed under: Marketing Articles — admin @ 8:43 am

One of my customers was so upset that I was so rude to call him during a hurricane. I call people in fifty different states each with different times zones and weather. How am I supposed to keep track of exactly where and when there is a hurricane. And if the hurricane is so bad, why answer the phone in the first place.

What I think is that people just don’t want to be bothered by me period. I am annoying, I always want them to login, take a quiz, or prove they know what they are doing. My requests are necessary for me to be able to list them. But, others see it as a pure nuissance. So, what can I do?

I just don’t get why he is so upset. If you don’t want to talk, then say you are busy. This person wrote me a long email about how it is impolite to call someone during a hurricane. Maybe he should have a welcome message, saying, “Sorry, but we are having a hurricane — press one to continue and probably be called rude, or hang up now.”

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December 25, 2017

123notary’s certifications will get you more business than before

Filed under: Marketing Articles — Tags: — admin @ 11:01 am

A certification is only as valuable as the knowledge it represents. In the past, I thought our certified members were great and did not need to be tested. Then, things changed and I found I was wrong. I had to remove certifications from many people’s listings. So, now there are fewer 123notary certified members. However, the ones that have the icon have a higher level of knowledge than before. Therefore, having our certification icon will get you a bigger advantage now than ever before.

All you have to do is actually know how to be a Notary, know your loan documents, and know how to handle situations. Being 123notary certified is pathetically easy. I am shocked how many people cannot pass our test. It is easy. Most people would rather fail in their career than study a few hours. Studying is not that hard, and this is much easier than studying for a real license. So, what is the problem.

In the old days, 123notary certificaiton would get you roughly 2.5x more business. Now, that I am cleaned up my cert icon and where I put it, it will logically get more than that. I would estimate it would get people 4x more business. However, I need to wait a few months before I get formal readings. In any case this is huge. You would be a fool not to have our icon. The studying involved is only a few hours. It won’t kill you.

Additionally, the Elite icon is being scrutinized. It is not so easy to get, but you can do it if you put your mind to it. Ask us how to get the elite icon. And if you don’t believe me then ask Santa (if he’s real.)

Also read – Compilation of certification posts

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December 18, 2017

Answering the call and then not wanting to talk. Reasoning.

Filed under: Marketing Articles — Tags: , — admin @ 10:55 am

Many Notaries answer when I call them and then tell me that they do not have time to talk. Many are so rude that immediately upon answering they tell me — I’m at a party, I’m in a signing, I can’t talk. Why answer if you can’t talk.

The common excuse is that they thought it was the Lender or someone else. How insulting. That means you want to talk, but you just don’t want to talk to me.

As I’ve said before, if you are free enough to talk, have the consideration to give the other person 90 seconds or more before you tell them that you are in the middle of something. If you are in the middle of a signing, you won’t get your next job if you don’t answer your phone or if you refuse to talk.

Talk Schedule
At a signing — offer 90 seconds of talk before you tell the other person you are at a signing if it is a business call.
At a party — offer several minutes before you cut the other person off
At dinner — if you refuse to talk when you are eating, you might lose a lot of work. We are not French or Spaniards here who have long interrupted dinners and a semblance of quality of life. We are Americans damn it! We live for work! If you want to have a pleasant life, save up and live in Greece where their debt situation is out of control. It is because they spend too much time enjoying life and not enough time balancing their budget!

Personally, I do not call people that often. But, when I do, if you refuse to talk, that means I have to track you down and call you up to five times just to ask you a simple question. Making me run around just to ask you two or three questions is insane and unbusinesslike. Please consider my end of the bargain. I have thousands of people to call and any unnecessary avoidance just makes my life a lot more difficult and unpleasant.

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You might also like:

Notary Marketing 102: Phone & Communication Etiquette
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19764

Notary etiquette from athiest to zombie
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=13718

Confirming the signing
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19976

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December 12, 2017

The Notary Profession is a Profession — act like it is!

Filed under: Marketing Articles — admin @ 3:52 am

Carmen and I are tired of Notaries treating the Notary profession as if it is a quick way to make some cash on the side — Make a few extra bucks — five bucks here, ten bucks there. This is a very bad way to look at the profession. First of all, there is liability in this profession. You can get sued even if you don’t do anything wrong. People are doing big deals that are being Notarized. If something goes wrong, they can sue you for a few thousand dollars. If the Lender did something fraudulent, you might get wrongfully sued too. If you put your package in a drop box that doesn’t get picked up and the borrower loses their lock — guess what could happen? You get the idea.

The root of the problem lies with the states who mostly have low requirements or no requirements for being a Notary. If you are 18 or over, not a felon and are breathing, you can be a Notary. Being a notary is a profession that safeguards the transactions of multi-million dollar estates. Any lack of integrity or caution on the part of the Notary can lead to disaster.

Imagine that you Notarize John Hancock only to find out he was a different John Hancock and syphened a million dollars of equity from someone’s estate. You might end up in court as a witness, accomplice, or get sued for negligence. You have no idea what you are playing with in this profession. You have to be careful what you put your stamp on. You might step on a mine.

Many Notaries also think that becuase their state has minimal requirements, that it is not necessary to go above and beyond your state minimum Notarial behavior — this is wrong. If you don’t keep a journal, don’t use an embosser and don’t thumbprint, you can get in huge trouble.

Think of state requirements like you think of speed limits. If the law says you can go 100 on the highway as was the case in Montana in the past and perhaps present, that doesn’t mean you are safe doing so. There could be deadly accidents. Just because you slow down to 95, you think you are being prudent, but are you really? You are still going faster than is safe. You can blame the state, but you are responsible for your own behavior.

Most professions have licensing tests that you have to take every year or two. Some professions make you take a test of 200 questions to make sure you understand all of the regulations and standards in your industry. The Notary profession has NNA tests that are taken every year or two. California has an exam you take every four years. But, people complain when I want to ask a few questions. People try to convince me that they know it all and don’t need to be tested because of all of the years they have been in business. These are the same people who score 20% on my quizzes.

Once again, the Notary profession is a profession — treat it like one. You should be quizzed every year on all the sites you are on. Since the states do not test your competency, I am forced to. It is a huge waste of my time and really frustrating dealing with all these resistent and incompetent people who think they are so smart.

If you really are so smart, just answer the questions, get an A, and then get on with your day. It would take two minutes to test people if they just knew the answers. The problem is that they resist, and then have to think about everything I ask, and then want to argue, and I need to teach them things and a simple quiz can take fifteen minutes that should take two minutes if I were dealing with professionals. How upsetting and what a waste ot my time.

To be a professional you need to do more than study. You need to master the art of being a Notary. You need to know everything and skip the snow job of trying to convince others you know everything when you don’t. The con jobs are getting very old. I have heard it all too many times. I really don’t even want to list such people. 123notary is a directory for professionals, not posers. At least that is the word young people use these days. When I was growing up we didn’t use that king of language, we said fakers.

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December 11, 2017

Following directions — what’s the big deal?

Filed under: Marketing Articles — admin @ 3:53 am

Many Notaries think that other people’s directions don’t matter. The other people are just being anal. There is no intrinsic reason for all these nitpicky rules, right? Not true. Many brokers use our site and lose big when Notaries refuse to follow directions. A broker can lose $3000 to $5000 just because a Notary does not follow directions. However, when I give quizzes, experienced Notaries do not follow directions roughly half the time. How can people survive in this industry without getting complaints when they just don’t do what they have been asked? Maybe they are just lucky. Maybe they have avoided situations where there are consequences.

Part of following directions is communication. Most Notaries do not answer questions the way they were phrased. It is a sign of poor mental discipline and can also lead to problems down the line.

When I ask how many loans have you signed, the answer is normally in years, not loans. When I ask how many journal entries, the answer is often an incomplete answer where I have to do the math or a lecture about how their state doesn’t require a journal. When I ask my famous question about the green pen, the answer is always to second guess the instructions by calling when the instructions specifically said not to call.

In real life, there are no green pens, there are no brokers who don’t want you to call them, and there is no guy named Chad who never answers his phone. These problems only exist in Jeremyland. However, in real life, there are guys named Dave who fire you for not following directions and other guys named Jeff who offer you less because you carry on like an idiot who can’t answer simple questions.

If you want to get paid well, you have to discipline yourself. You need to know your notary procedures and documents inside out. You need to communicate perfectly, not ramble, not argue, etc. You need to be on time, dress well, and get documents back on time. You need basic judgement and communication skills too. Most Notaries have none of these skills and just spend a lot of time complaining. It is getting a bit old. You don’t get ahead by complaining and being resistent, but so many Notaries act this way.

The moral of the story is to place a bigger emphasis on following directions. Your reputation could be ruined because you did not follow directions even once. Bad reviews stay on your listing for three years — no exceptions unless they are blatantly fraudulent. You might also cost someone $5000 because you did not follow directions or did not get back to them. Their directions might mean nothing to you, but they mean something to the person paying you.

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November 23, 2017

A pleasant surprise

Filed under: Marketing Articles — admin @ 3:48 am

For the last few months I have been testing everyone on the site. Yes, it is very painstaking work and thankless. People complain, are rude, and evasive. I hate it. However, the quality of the site has been getting better as a result.

Once in a while I get a pleasant surprise. Someone will actually appreciate my hard work and tell me that what I am doing actually is useful and has a value. Others will surprise me by getting 100% on my quiz which makes me very happy. So, it’s not all depressing and heartbreaking. There are pleasant surprises.

On a sadder note, some of our best Notaries who we held as experts have lost their mojo and scored horribly on our quiz. Old age, disease, mental deterioration and other causes can lead to Notaries not doing well. It is so sad. But, what can I do?

It is unfortunate that it is a surprise when someone does well on my quiz. That should be the norm, not an abnormality. Oh well. Maybe in a few years, we will train everyone to be experts and then we will have an army of top notch Notaries. We’ll see.

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