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July 3, 2017

Snapdocs’ Business Model Doesn’t Add Up

Filed under: Advertising — admin @ 9:15 am

SNAPDOCS’ BUSINESS MODEL DOESN’T ADD UP

It was the best of times, and the worst of times. SnapDocs has the best technology but the worst notaries. Their business model should last as long as the careers of the accountants who gave Warren Beatty the wrong envelope. A chain of Notaries is as good as its weakest link. Just ask the crummiest McDonalds about that. So in the long run, how good can SnapDocs’ service be?

Two out of three notaries interviewed can’t stand them. And these weren’t SNAP decisions! Will SnapDocs’ ship come in, or did it never leave the docks? Hold on – I’m getting a text. Let’s see… thirty dollars for a signing a hundred miles away, with two hundred pages and 120 fax backs… no thanks! Four out of five notaries surveyed agree that one out of five notaries… is an idiot! And recommend sugarless gum for the borrowers who step in it on their way to a signing.

On the other hand (apologies to the amputees) one out of three notaries (and I was never great at fractions) really like the convenience and quantity of work they get from SnapDocs. And the signing companies love the technology and the convenience. But the love won’t last any longer than the rescission period if they don’t maintain critical mass. The question is… with such a small number of notaries who like them, can this business model last over the long haul? Another factor to consider is that out of SnapDocs’ roughly 6000 notaries, only about 800 of them have logged in in the last thirty days. SnapDocs’ technology can text dozens of nearby notaries, but if each area averages only 7 notaries that actually log in, how effective can this technology be if a critical mass of notaries aren’t cooperating with it?

We also notice SnapDocs’ web stats were down 70% in December, while 123notary was only down 25%.How long before their business model SNAPS?

Whoops, I’m getting another text. Can’t you see I’m driving??

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June 19, 2017

Which Notary directories get high paying signings?

Filed under: Advertising — Tags: , , , , — admin @ 10:45 pm

Which Notary directories can help you get $150 jobs? Which Notary directory will help you get a high quantity of work. Which Notary directory will get you nicer clients? Here are some answers.

123notary — email us for a quote at info@123notary.com
123notary is a directory that refines its information daily. We attract all types of Notaries, but refine our list to put the absolute cream of the crop at the top of search results by using a complicated algorithm. This is why we are popular with Title companies and attract more high paying work than all other directories combined! Experienced Notaries on 123notary average $110 per signing. Disclaimer: Not all jobs from 123notary are amazing, but the percentage of good ones is higher than other directories, which puts you in a position to filter out the undesirable companies.

We put roughly 300 new notaries online every month and then take off half of the free new listings that have bad stats. We also have to remove older listings where the Notaries have become unresponsive. This constant refinement has made us the most reliable source for accurate information of any Notary directory.

123notary offers top placed listings in your county. All you have to do is email us at info@123notary.com and ask us for a quote for a high position in your area. Notaries with a top spot on 123notary get an exponentially higher quality of work as well as more total offers.

NotaryRotary
They are famous for their forum which is the most popular in the industry. Their directory is easy to use as it shows results in order of proximity to the search zip code. NotaryRotary focuses on closeness rather than on the quality or knowledge legal of the Notary. NotaryRotary gets a little bit of high paying Title Company work, but mostly signing company work.

SnapDocs
SnapDocs is a clearinghouse for the lowest paid and most undignified Notary work out there. Notaries get cattle calls via mass texts to all Notaries in the area for low paying jobs that often only pay $50 or $60 per signing. If you are a beginner and want to get your feet wet then try them. However, Notaries with experience are dropping off this medium like flies!

NotaryCafe
This is a much smaller directory that capitalizes on quality Notaries. Jobs are often higher paying, but there are not a lot of jobs to go around. Quantity is not a specialty of NotaryCafe unfortunately, but we still recommend them to more experienced Notaries.

SigningAgent.com
NNA’s directory has a lot of Notaries. Most of the Notaries are newer while there are a few experienced ones on board. The high point of this directory is that you can see the dates when Notaries became NNA certified and/or background screened which means a lot to signing companies. However, this company has not generated that much work for signing agents for years.

You might also like:

The state of Notary advertising in 2016
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=16738

Best virtual comedy 2016 edition
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=17693A comprehensive guide to Notary pricing
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=16504

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April 24, 2017

If everyone complains about Snapdocs, why do they continue to grow?

Filed under: Advertising — Tags: — admin @ 7:07 am

Despite constant bickering on the part of Notaries, Snapdocs continues to grow. Perhaps it is the convenience. You can send a message to twenty people simultaneously. But, it’s not convenient for the Notaries, and they don’t get paid well either.

Should Notaries continue to be signed up on Snapdocs? If they are desperate! It just seems like a huge headache. But, if you thrive on quantity of low paying and annoying jobs, it sounds like low-ball heaven.

The fact is that Snapdocs grew all year. They had a slow month in August or September according to some webstats I saw. I have no idea why. Perhaps some technical issues? Or perhaps their competitors (me) did something good!

How long will Notaries put up with cattle calls, low fees, fax backs and micromanaging? And how much will Snapdocs continue to grow?

123notary is going to have to compete a little harder and add some new high-tech features to regain some of the market share lost to Snapdocs. But, what type of features will we use? Find out!

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March 29, 2017

Names for Notary businesses that can get you in trouble

Filed under: Advertising — admin @ 7:25 am

In general, we recommend certain types of names for Notary businesses.

Geo-Keywords
The name can include a geographical keyword such as the name of your city, state, or region such as Los Angeles Notary Services or Koreatown Mobile Notary.

Professional Keywords
It can also be more professional oriented such as Karen’s Signing Services, or Notary Pro to Go. One successful Notary used the name After Hours Notary, At Your Service Mobile Notary, Notary at your Door, etc.

But, what if you got yourself in trouble picking the wrong name?
Many Notaries use generic business names that nobody will associate with the profession like LMT Services. I would not want to hire them to be my Notary because their name doesn’t gel with the profession. You need what I call anchor keywords to tie in your business with the work being done and/or the area it is being done.

Names that might get you in trouble!
You could also name your business First American Notary and probably get sued by one of our nation’s largest title companies. If you used the same name a signing company used, that causes trouble too. Many companies pick names that are very similar to other company names and get mistaken for each other. National Signers, National Signing Solutions, National Notary Service, Signing National, etc. You can see. So, if you pick a name, try to avoid using words that other services use. Be unique, classy, and relevant to your profession and perhaps to your area. You could use a hotel-like strategy for naming your business like Comfort Notary, Quality Notary, or Holiday Notary. I don’t think those names would serve you well, but who knows. Then there is USA Notary which is too generic and national and not specific to a particular area. Canada Notary would be in the wrong country. Inuit Notary would be good in Alaska, but not anywhere else. Hopi Notary might be good in Arizona, but the tribal leaders might object — just make sure they don’t put a curse on you! Star Notary Service is too generic, but what about Celebrity Notary Service? Royal Notary doesn’t make sense because we have no royalty in America.

Here are some names of Notary businesses our Notaries have:

A1 Notary Services — Will get you up high in the yellow pages. But, might get you confused with steak sauce.
Bay Area Notary — Great name, and has been in business for over a decade.
SOMA Mobile Notary — What does SOMA stand for?
Golden Gate Mobile Notary & Apostille — Sounds like they definitely go to Marin County.
Affordable Notary — Will they be classy enough for my needs?
The Notary To Call — This one has 33 reviews. Sounds like they really are the Notary to Call.
TheBestNotary.Net — He did well with his business.
Arden Mobile Notary Service — It’s a name, but not flashy.
Diamond Star Notaries — Okay
Sunshine Notary Service — Warm and inviting, but do they do late night service?
Dash Notary — Sounds like a good bet if you are in a hurry.
CA Notary Services — They did well in business, but California is a huge state. I prefer a more pinpointed regional name.
One-Call Closing Services, LLC — Exciting. You just call them once and the job is as good as done.
On Call Closing Services — They are waiting for you. Sounds like they take their phone to bed with them.
Denver Metro Notary — A geographically informative name. I know their coverage areas just by the name alone.
Signed-N-Sealed — Very professional sounding.
I & S Notary and Wedding Services, LLC — I’d prefer IB + SD Notary & Wedding; sounds more romantic.
D & D Document — Easy to remember and gets to the point.
1-2-3 Spanish Notary — I prefer 1-2-3 Notary en Espanol if you want to appeal to the prospective clients.
Mobile Notary Services — Very generic; bad name! Probably not even registered with the county clerk.
The S and S Group — Sounds like they don’t do notary work as their main forte.
Indiana Mobile Closers — Statewide coverage? Cool
Notary Mobile Plus — Gets the idea across.
C & S Mobile Closers — Sounds like a generic name like JB Trucking.
Drive by Notary — Sounds like they do notary jobs but do drive by shootings on the side.
DJ Mobile Notary — Someone’s initials at use here.
Emily The Notary — Classy and charming.

So, what are my favorite names?
Emily The Notary — This is a personal and easy to remember name that connects you with the person’s name and what they do. It is simple for the brain to process too.
Dash Notary — This name captures the character of our industry. We live on the edge, always ready to rush off to a signing at the last minute. It is not so different from the term Minute Man which is popular in Massachusetts where we used to have Minute Men.
Golden Gate Mobile Notary & Apostille — This name incorporates a world-class local geographical icon with the notary business. Very classy and relevant to our profession, but with a $6 toll going South (ouch.)

What are your favorite names? Feel free to comment!

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March 6, 2017

How do I advertise as a Notary Public?

Filed under: Advertising — admin @ 9:34 pm

General Advertising
If you are a Notary Public or a Mobile Notary Public, it is critical that clients know how to find you. Some Notaries have a store front. In such a case, you just put a large sign saying Notary Public. You could put a sign on your car saying Notary Public and a phone number as well. It’s generally a good idea to pass our business cards to people in the neighborhood or your town so they know where to go if they need a Notary. Additionally hospitals and nursing homes need Notaries regularly.

Yellow Pages
The yellow pages online and offline sometimes get good results for Mobile Notaries although not always.You can gets out various yellow pages and see which ones get results.

Online Directories
These days, the way mobile notaries get most of their work is through online directories. 123notary, Notary Rotary, and Snapdocs and the three most popular in 2016. 123notary offers free listings, but also has paid listings where you can be at the top of the list in your area. Notary Rotary also has free and paid listings and lists Notaries in order of proximity to the zip code being queried. Snapdocs charges the Lender or Signing Company a small fee ($8 last I heard) to seach for a Notary and send docs using their system. Snapdocs pays Notaries the least and has cattle calls via text to alert mass amounts of Notaries for each job. But, on a brighter note, it is a great opportunity for newer Notaries to get work.

Websites
A Notary website of your own can be a huge money drain. On the other hand, it is a great way to show the world you are serious about the business and show all of your specialties, contact information, and more.

That is pretty much it as far as how you advertise as a Notary Public. If you have any further questions, email us at info@123notary.com

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February 13, 2017

Ideas for 24 hour Notary services

Filed under: Advertising — admin @ 7:24 am

Naming your business is never easy. But, here are some ideas of how to name a late-night notary service.

Moonlight Notary might be a good name for someone 24/7.

Nocturne Mobile Notary — a classical approach to late night notarizations!
Ninja Late Night Notary Services
The Signing Owl
Orion’s Belt 24 Hour Notary Service
Vampire Notary Service — we answer the phone, “Good evening…..(heavy breathing)”
Around the Clock Mobile Notary
Twilight Notary Services
Sun & Moon Notary Services
Day & Night Mobile Notary
Last Minute Mobile Notary
Minute-Man 24 Hour Notary Services
Out The Door 24 Hour Notary Services
Good Evening Notary Services
Dusk to Dawn Signing Services
John Hancock 24 Hour Signing Services
Owl Mobile Notary Services
Half-Moon Mobile Notary
Crescent Moon Mobile Notary
Up All Night Mobile Notary
NiteLite Mobile Notary
Gas Lamp 24 Hour Mobile Notary — classy
Night Watchman Mobile Notary — 1 O’clock and all is well.
Night Sky Mobile Notary
Nocturnal Mobile Notary
Sunset Mobile Notary
Nightfall Mobile Notary
Sleepwalker Mobile Notary
Dream 24 Hour Notary Service

Names to avoid
Clair de Lune Notary
Moonlight Sonata Notary
Opus 27 Mobile Notary — Opus 27 = the moonlight sonata. I’m sure your customers will know that by heart if they hang out with my parents.
Hoo-Hoo Late Night Services
Howl of the wolf late night notary services
Mayan Mobile Notary — We’ll keep Notarizing until the end of the world!
Mayan Notary Services — We’ll notarize you then sacrifice you! But, not necessarily in that order.
Lunar Mobile Notary — We based our appointments on the lunar calendar.
Looney Mobile Notary – Get looney with us and your signatures.
Slumber Party Mobile Notary
Snooze Mobile Notary
Brass Candle Holder Mobile Notary
Geisha Notary Services — Notary service and traditional entertainment
Night Life Mobile Notary
Nighty-Night Mobile Notary
Waxing & Waning Mobile Notary and spa services
Lunar Eclipse Mobile Notary
In The Dark Mobile Notary — we’ll notarize you, but you won’t know what you’re signing (or paying.)
Incessant Mobile Notary
Phantom Mobile Notary — make sure your ghost has ID

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January 19, 2017

Geographic Notary Business Names

Filed under: Advertising — admin @ 7:23 am

The classiest business names I have seen Notaries do involve some referencing to geographic icons. Here are some ideas I had, or existing business names. I’ll mix them together. If you choose a business name, make sure to check with your county clerk to make sure the name is not already in use!

Golden Gate Mobile Notary
Bay Area Mobile Notary
Golden Coast Mobile Notary
Hollywood Sign Mobile Notary
Sunset Strip Mobile Notary
Gaslamp District Mobile Notary
Puget Sound Mobile Notary
Columbia River Mobile Notary
Rocky Mountain Notary
Yellowstone Mobile Notary
Grizzly Bear Mobile Notary
American Eagle Mobile Notary
Lakota Notary Services — you might get in trouble with the tribe for jacking their name!
Everglades Mobile Notary
The Alamo Mobile Notary
Saguaro Mobile Notary
Grand Canyon Mobile Notary
Hoover Dam Mobile Notary
Salt Lake Mobile Notary
Windy City Mobile Notary
Iroquois Mobile Notary
Vacation State Mobile Notary
White Mountains Mobile Notary
Blue Hills Mobile Notary
Smokey Mountains Mobile Notary
Beacon Hill Mobile Notary
Harvard Square Mobile Notary – Geographically limiting
Sequoia Mobile Notary
Minuteman Mobile Notary — Good in Massachusetts
Plymouth Rock Mobile Notary

I’m having a brain freeze, so I’ll end the list here. Not all of these would make good business names, but it gets you thinking at least.

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January 18, 2017

Snapdocs grew tremendously in 2016, but NotaryRotary shrank!

Filed under: Advertising — Tags: — admin @ 7:21 am

I took a look at the stats of Snapdocs, NotaryRotary, and 123notary over the last few months. Here is what I noticed.

1. Snapdocs got increasing amounts of traffic during 2016 while 123notary & NotaryRotary lost traffic. My stats indicate that this December I got about 17% less visits to 123notary than last December for example. Alexa.com showed a huge increase in site rank in Snapdocs while showing a small decline in 123notary’s and NotaryRotary’s site rank which is based on overall traffic.

2. In September 2016, based on similarweb.com 123notary experienced a huge surge in traffic while Snapdocs & NotaryRotary experienced a huge decline. My Google Analytics showed a surge in traffic on 123notary, but in August, not September. So, perhaps similarweb.com is a little bit off (or completely off) in its reporting.

My personal stats show that 123notary lost 8% of traffic in 2016 as a whole compared to 2015 as a whole. Part of that is due to Snapdocs. But, Snapdocs traffic grew a lot over 2016 which means that we lost more during the last few months of the year. According to one stats site, Snapdocs traffic was double what 123notary’s was. However, their traffic is low-ball where 123notary gets a lot more high quality traffic.

On the other hand, Alexa.com shows that 123notary’s rank is roughly equal to Snapdocs. So, which source of information is the most reliable? In my experience Google Analytics is the most reliable and detailed source of web stats information. Unfofortunately, I do not have Google analytics on my competitors’ stats.

New Profiles
I’m trying to make sense of what is happening, but it is so complicated. 123notary added several hundred new profiles in August which could have lead to a rise in stats for us in September. But, our stats show that our spike was in August, not September which leads me to feel that there is a lag in the reporting on the other stats site

Social Media
Our social media took a huge dive in clicks starting around August and our Facebook performance affects our general web traffic.

What to do?
I am looking at this information completely baffled. I work hard every day to ensure the best quality search experience on 123notary. We get traffic that pays notaries well on 123notary. But, the total clicks matter to me as well, and clicks are far down. Do I add more profiles? Do I do more on social media? Do I create a better mobile site experience? Should we try to get more reviews? Or should I emphasize different information than I do now? I think the answer is all of the above!

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December 17, 2016

Who is involved with 123notary behind the scenes?

When most of us see a website, we see the front end and are absolutely oblivious to what goes on behind the scenes. The fact is that running 123notary involves all types of work that you might not be aware of. Here is a breakdown of what gets done and who does what.

Hosting
123notary is hosted by Connectria and has been for eight years. They keep the site online and help solve technical issues with the servers. You might be surprised to know how much it actually costs to host 123notary. The cost is about $1500 per month and that is before a single hour of programming is billed.

Programming 1999-2010
123notary has had many programmers over the years.

Mark — was our main programmer and he built most of the functions on 123notary.

SzeWan — worked with Mark and did a lot of the phone lists and other functions of 123notary.

Peter — The original programmer for 123notary was actually Jeremy’s dad Peter who is a retired Ada Compiler programmer. Peter worked on much more sophisticated projects during his day and figured out web programming from the ground up. All of Peter’s work had to be rebuilt in newer languages such as ASP, and once again ten years later needs to be rebuilt in a newer version of ASP. When does it end?

Programming 2010-2016

InvitraTech — after Mark quit, which was a huge tragedy for 123notary, we used some programmers in India who we had used on another project. Due to some technical reasons logging into the server, we had to transfer programming to someone in Phoenix.

Phoenix Programmers –Unfortunately the guy in Phoenix had such a temper problem we had to cancel a very critical migration the day it was scheduled. We tried many programmers after that, but found them to be either incompetent, or to be unwilling to work. After that, it many months of trial and error to find another programmer who I liked and who would be loyal to us, and about two years of paying for two servers to finally get the migration to go through since I was so busy (and frustrated.)

Fred — Now, we are laying low on programming and Fred does small fixes for us. Fred was responsible for finally completing the migration and got it done very smoothly I might add.

Brent — In addition to Fred, Brent and his team help us out with fixes from time to time. This is a very long list of programmers. I think my life would have been easier if I could have found one who would stick to the job. Maybe I should have learned programming.

Sales

Carmen — has been with 123notary since 2003 which was the year our business started to really pick up. I remember sitting in the car in March 2003 answering a sales call and my friend (ex-friend) tried to get me to shut the phone off. I explained to him that my business is finally taking off, and why stifle myself? After a few months of the phone ringing off the hook which was a welcomed form of over-work after years of poverty — I came to my senses and realized I needed help. So, in 2003, I pleaded with Carmen to get her on board. She was very resistant at first believe it or not, and then developed a love and loyalty for the job which has lasted until today and hopefully for many years to come. Carmen became full-time with 123notary in 2005.

Jeremy also does outbound sales from time to time.

Adine, Wendy, Sally, and Leah have also done sales, although they all got busy with other things and decided not to work for 123notary anymore.

Writers

123notary’s blog became very popular around 2012. Instead of the world ending like the Mayans claimed, 123notay’s world got filled with interesting articles. 123notary was able to find a few amazing writers to help out. Ken does writing mostly about technical and business advice issues. Since he is an accomplished Notary, it is easy for him to write about the finer points of Notary marketing, pricing, and documents. Jeremy does a little of everything at 123notary and writes the majority of the articles. Andy is a professional TV and screen writer who wrote for Cheers, Seinfeld and more. Andy helps write comedy articles for 123notary and also helps with idea generation. Andy’s blog articles became hits and we have a folder for him in our Guest Bloggers category on our blog.

So, who else?
Mrs. Meao helped 123notary guard its working quarters from unwelcomed intruders (mice.) But, there were no mice, so Mrs. Meao took naps most of the time. In the future, I’d like to see more variety of blog writers. The problem is that the blog writing applicants come up with such lame topics that I never hire them. They are simply not in tune with what people want to read. We tried to create a teaching program, but none of the Notaries who had teaching backgrounds wanted to cooperate. So, we’ll see how 123notary develops. Wish us luck!

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December 14, 2016

Do you compare yourself to others on the 123notary search results?

Filed under: Advertising,Popular on Facebook (A little) — Tags: , — admin @ 12:00 am

We want to remind all Notaries that you are in a constant state of competition. It behooves you to look regularly at what the others are doing in your area wherever you do notary advertising. If you in Timbuktu, IL, see how the others are doing. Otherwise, the phone will stop ringing and you won’t know why. Perhaps Tom in your area will have twenty new reviews while your last review is collecting cyber dust. Or perhaps Mary will have passed our Elite test while you failed our regular certification test two years ago and never tried again.

If you compare yourself to others on the list you will quickly notice certain things.
1. Some Notaries offer late night service. Our icons for Owl hours and 24 hours attract a lot of callers.
2. Some Notaries have many reviews and recent reviews. Others have three reviews the same day back in 2009 which looks fake by the way.
3. Some Notaries have a very evolved looking notes section while others have a one liner or leave their notes blank.
4. Some Notaries have a company name that sounds good while others just use their personal name.
5. Those using our site regularly are painfully aware of how much less knowledgeable signers are who are not 123notary.com certified. Those uncertified folks tend not to get picked much despite their claims that — “But, I’m NNA certified, so why should I have to pass another test? I already know it all.” Those who use our site think that you do not know it all if you can’t pass our test which is timed!

It boils down to — do you want jobs or not? Are you willing to do several quick things to make sure you get jobs or do you want to do the minimum and hope to get by? This is not Junior High folks, this is real life, and the minimum doesn’t cut it. You have to make sure you have all of your bells and whistles. You need notes, certifications, reviews, company names, good skills, you need to answer your phone regularly, and do good work. If you goof in any one area, your business will suffer. So, why not do everything right, and prosper?

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