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July 5, 2019

The evolution of American commerce and Snapdocs

Filed under: Advertising — admin @ 2:41 am

In the old days, America used to have lots of mom & pop stores owned by regular American families. As demographics changed, these stores more and more got bought out by Jews, Koreans, Pakistanis, Palestinians, etc. And then as the chain stores took popularity due to their centralized and efficient management, the mom & pop stores had a harder time staying in business and most got absorbed or put under by the chain stores.

SnapDocs is doing the same thing. They have provided a very efficient way of doing business where inefficient service providers are being weeded out. Additionally, other directories like us are losing a lot of market share. Our search results are still vastly superior to SnapDocs, but the millennial users care tremendously about convenience and don’t care about quality probably because they can’t comprehend what quality is, especially if it takes more than three (consecutive) seconds to think about.

On a brighter note for those of us competing against SnapDocs, I have been hearing that their members are getting almost no work. So, maybe there is hope for the rest of us. Maybe they will fizzle out and live, but live small.

Additionally, SnapDocs has weeded out a lot of Notaries who are not that bad, who are just not as fast on the draw as the others. SnapDocs rewards you for being an iPhone slinger. If you are the Jesse James or Clint Eastwood of the Notary industry, you might cut it with SnapDocs. But, if you have to think before you draw — forget about it. Remember — the next signing is for Indio and his men. You can listen to the twangy melody from an antiquated music box as you imagine finally slaying Zapata as you draw for your iPhone the next time you get a text. The same melody that Zapata forced you to listen to as he slayed your family — remember that movie? Drop your iPhones and reach for the sky hombres!

The main thing to remember is that if you don’t want to be phased out, be a quality notary. Be at the top of your skill set, put a lot in your notes section, and do your maximum, not your minimum like the other 99.5% of Notaries who hide behind their years of experience instead of being evidence of real knowledge.

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June 4, 2019

Most Notaries don’t like Yelp

Filed under: Advertising — admin @ 11:21 pm

The experienced Notaries tend to drop out from Yelp. The jobs tend to be cheap and the volume tends to be high. However, Yelp is a great way to get reviews. If you ask your Yelp clients to write reviews for you on 123notary, you might do a lot better on our site. Additionally, single document signings tend to be fast, and are a great way to fill in time when signings are slow which is most of the time these days.

Using Yelp is also another way to get a lot of useful experience under your belp.., I meant belt. To get ahead as a Notary, people want to know that you have handled thousands of signings. The faster you get those signings accomplished, the more higher quality work you might get.

So, understand what Yelp is and see it for what it is. It might be a boon for your business, so use every advantage you can get. And one more thing: to have healthy reviews, use Yelp, but to have a healthy body, eat kelp!

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March 29, 2019

He stopped advertising with us because he got too much business?

Filed under: Advertising — admin @ 9:47 am

I rarely have situations like this. But, once in a while I call one of the more seasoned Notaries and they don’t want to advertise for various reasons. It takes a long time in this business to get so much business that you don’t need to advertise. Normally those people have been doing this at least fifteen years before they are in that type of situation. Yes folks, it does take a long time to get established as a Notary Public. I only was a signing agent for six years, so I never got fully established.

In any case, when I called this person, he said that he used to be a corporate executive vice president of a corporation. He quit his job to become a Notary Public. He got so much business from our site that he couldn’t advertise any more because he couldn’t handle all of the calls.

However, business dropped so much in the last year, that he wanted to continue advertising and I was able to sell him an upgrade. He still gets lots of work, but from people who don’t pay him enough and he wants to attract some higher paying clients. Don’t we all? In any case, it was nice to get such a serous and fun client back. But, I am amazed that in 2018 he is getting six or more jobs per day, almost every day?

If you want to know a good background for being a successful mobile notary, try being a vice president of a business. That will make you sharp on being business-like. He also gave me the oddest compliment. He liked that I spoke in complete sentences which made me start to wonder…. Do other people use partial sentences? Don’t know. Doesn’t matter. Never thought about that.

In any case, if you want to get too much business, advertise on 123notary. But… make sure you have reviews. Reviews are a magnet on any site to get more positive attention.

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March 25, 2019

What makes a p#10 preferential listing do well on 123notary?

Filed under: Advertising — admin @ 9:51 am

Many people purchase preferential listings from us. They are cost effective and a great way to start out. But, some of these listings do well while others do not. Why?

Test Scores
Preferential listings are all subjected to Jeremy’s quiz (which nobody likes except for a few nerdy Notaries.) I used to do the test by phone, but this caused too much stress to all parties involved. So, now I do it by email which tests not only knowledge, but how fast you answer emails — if at all. Notaries who did well with preferential listings typically had above average test scores, but did not have high test scores — you could say the average score was mediocre plus. Average unfortunately is failing these days with the lack of emphasis on education. Preferential listings that did not do well typically did not respond to my quiz email or failed. So, yes, education and skill still matters and if you think you can succeed by winging it because nobody cares — you are wrong!

Reviews
The average preferential listing that got above average clicks had an average of about four reviews compared to zero or one with the unsuccessful listings. So, you do not need dozens of reviews, but you need a new one once every six months or so to do well.

Experience
People who hire Notaries want experience. But, Notaries sometimes lie about their experience. The preferential listings that performed well typically showed about 4000 loans signed compared to an average of 1500 for the less popular listings. So, having a lot of experience is not enough. You need more than a lot. FYI, the highest placed listings needed more like 6000 loans to do well because it is more competitive at the top. To get more experience, you need to say yes more, and work for people who are not that nice, and micromanage too much and don’t pay well. In the long run, your experience and knowledge is your gold. So study and get more jobs under your belt.

24/7 and Owl Icons
Preferential listings that do well offer late night service more times than not. Offering convenience helps a lot.

Notes
Preferential listings that did well typically have a well written notes section. Those that don’t perform well half the time don’t have a good notes section or any notes section. What you say about yourself and how you say it matters more than you think. Pay more attention to your notes section.

Summary
If you want a quick way to make your preferential listing do better, study from Notary Public 101 on our blog (which is free and very popular), ask people you have worked for for reviews and email them a link to your review page. Write a better notes section and ask for help if you need any. Additionally, consider offering service until 10:30pm so you can get an owl icon. Offering a more expansive list of specialties including hospitals, jails, and more types of loans not to mention last minute service can really help too. There are many things you can do to boost your business within 30 days. Why not do all of those things?

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March 23, 2019

To do well with a high placed listing, you need 6000 loans signed

Filed under: Advertising — admin @ 9:52 am

If you want to purchase a high placed listing, I recommend it. However, to do well, you need experience, good communication skills, reviews, and knowledge. In short, you need a package of skills to do well on our directory. But, how much experience do you need?

In my opinion which may or may not add up in today’s world, your knowledge takes precedent over your experience. I would rather hire someone with 500 loans signed who can answer my hardest questions. Someone with 20000 loans signed who knows nothing and has been winging it all these years is less valuable because I think they are incompetent. I do not hire notaries, but those that do have their own standards. they want experience, but when I ask them “how much” experience, the answers are very wishy-washy. Generally people ask for two years of experience. But, when I interview Notaries with two years of experience they often have not signed a single loans.

Expressing experience in terms of loans signed is better than years in my opinion because it is a more accurate reflection of what you have actually done. However, people lie on their number of loans, or fail to update their number for years on end which leads to inaccurate information.

What I learned crunching numbers is that the Notaries who do well in high spots on our site typically have a median of about 6000 loans signed. 6000 real loans, not a fake number you input into your profile when you login. I am assuming that our # of loan data is roughly true for the most part although there are always liars.

This is not to say that those with less loans will not do well with a high spot. But, if you have less experience, you need to compensate for that by doing a lot of studying. Test results matter more for newer Notaries than for more experienced Notaries on our site according to my number crunching. Notary Public 101 is a nice course on our blog where you can learn the basics of Notary procedure, acts, vocabulary, real life scenarios, and loan documents. It is a very popular course and comes highly recommended.

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March 22, 2019

Which analytics get you more clicks and why? A change in the 123notary analytics system.

Filed under: Advertising — admin @ 9:53 am

At 123notary, we have been using analytics for more than ten years. We do this to identify which listings are better quality than others. The issue is that there are 15 different factors we look at and all of those factors have to be weighed to compute a final points score.

One of the issues I have found is that analytics do not apply equally to listings in different placements. Here are some examples.

People who don’t answer the phone lose a lot of clicks in the high range of the search results while in the middle of the search results listings do not lose a lot of clicks on average by not picking up.

People who refuse to talk after answering the phone lose a lot of clicks in the middle of the list but do not in the high end of the list. This data seems to be opposite from the phone answering data. Basically people in the middle of the list don’t have to pick up, but if they do, they had better be nice and talk otherwise they will lose a lot of clicks.

People who argue with Jeremy (that’s me) can get away with it and that will not affect their scores. But, people who interrupt seem to get a lot worse click scores. The difference seems to be that arguing with Jeremy is something people only do with Jeremy, but not with clients because they think that my opinion of them doesn’t matter (boy are they wrong.) But, people who interrupt do this because of a lack of control and probably a screw loose. This screw loose will manifest with everybody. Additionally, if you refuse to answer questions over the phone with Jeremy, this does not seem to affect your click ratios at all.

So, let’s look at the factors in order of importance.

CRITICAL
If you have good reviews and lots of them, this counts in your favor as the most important analytic for clicks.

If you score well on Jeremy’s tests, it might not mean anything to you, but the other Notaries do not have the skills to match and are rarely willing to study, so this makes you stand out.

If you have horrible communication skills to the point where someone can barely talk with you, you will lose more clicks than from any other factor.

If you have someone else answer the phone for you, you will lose a lot of clicks.

MODERATE
If you give vague answers to questions, this affects your clicks. Vague answers are a sign of sluggish and unclear thinking. Your clients might want their questions answered in a way where they don’t have to ask for clarification.

Ignoring emails is another way to lose a fair number of clicks. If someone asks you questions by email and you ignore them, they will be less likely to click on your listing in the future or use you.

Refusing to talk after you have answered the phone is a fast way to lose clicks. If you can’t talk — don’t answer. Just send them a text if you feel the call is important.

Having an answering machine that does not state your name is another way to lose a lot of clicks.

SMALL
Rambling on and on is annoying, but title companies seem to be a lot more patient with this behavior than I am. I recommend controlling what comes out of your mouth on business calls. But, this is a lot smaller of a factor than I previously thought.

Background noise is something I can’t stand, but it doesn’t seem to affect click volume. If you can avoid background noise, you should.

Poor call backs. When you call someone back, refuse to announce who you are, but ask them who they are, and make them repeat themselves three times — to me this is unbearable and rude. But, this behavior for some reason does not seem to affect click rates.

Answering the phone saying, “hello?” seems very unprofessional to me. You have to announce yourself and then ask the person who they are, and instead of telling you they ask who you are after you have told them and then ask why you are calling. Some people you have to ask who they are three times to get a straight answer. However, this used to affect click ratios more, but these days since people are shopping for price more than quality, it does not affect your scores much. I still recommend acting professional if possible.

SUMMARY
The analytics that matter are reviews, clear communication, quiz scores, and answering your own phone. Many of the analytics I thought mattered before seem to be very trivial. I concluded that my personal value system is antiquated and does not matter in today’s world. I was running my directory based on what I thought is important. Now, I am running it based on what those who click feel is important. Things have changed in certain ways as a result.

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March 21, 2019

A tour of Notary Cafe reveals that business is slow based on job stats

Filed under: Advertising — Tags: — admin @ 10:25 am

My last visit to Notary Cafe was depressing. A handful of Notaries were dominating market share. The others were getting almost no work. Some got zero jobs in the last three months. Others got one or two. How do you make a living with such bad odds?

The Notary Cafe stats show how many jobs you got in the last 12 months and in the last 3 months as well. It is a good marker for, “What have you done for me lately?”

A lot of Notaries are just hanging in there in hopes that things will pick up. I feel that 2019 and 2020 will be good years for Notaries. I don’t know why I feel this. I have no evidence. It is just a gut feeling. I also feel that Snapdocs will slow down in 2019 and 2020 and perhaps leave the industry. But, I might be wrong. We’ll have to wait and see.

On the other hand, Notary Cafe probably counts for about 5% of the signing agent work out there. So, if people don’t get work there, what does it really mean?

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You might also like:

When did Notary Cafe become decaffeinated?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19238

Which directories get high paying listings?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19201

Current signing company gossip (string)
http://blog.123notary.com/?tag=gossip

Good signing companies – a thorough list
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=21091

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March 20, 2019

High placed listings – which ones get more clicks and why?

Filed under: Advertising — admin @ 9:54 am

I spent six hours analyzing clicks this week. Perhaps I should have spent more time. What I noticed is that the high placed listings seem to be affected differently by the same analytics.

People who argue with me do not show a drop in clicks. But, people who interrupt me do.

People who score well on tests do a lot better in the mid range of our search results while the high placed people with high test results show a more moderate gain.

People who refuse to talk to me show a drop of clicks in the mid range, but no drop in clicks for the high placed listings.

People who have someone else answer the phone for them show the largest drop in clicks.

People who have poor language skills also show a huge drop in clicks.

People who don’t answer their phone get fewer clicks, but not that many fewer clicks. I’m not sure why.

It seems that the Notaries were correct when they said that if they are rude to me, that they won’t be rude to title, because being rude to me does not show up on clicks. But, general signs of incompetence and poor communication show up heavily. So, I learned a lot in my six hours. Perhaps I should put in a little more time.

HIGH PLACED LISTINGS
There were four huge factors that determine how a high placed listing will perform on 123notary.com. So, if you are considering spending big bucks with us, please consider that we want you to renew. If you dress up your listing properly, you will most likely get a great result and want to renew. But, if you don’t, then your money will get poor mileage and you will have nobody to blame but yourself.

Reviews
The listings with the highest clicks in a p#20 position had a median of 10 reviews. I decided not to do an average because Ken Edelstein in NYC has over 400 reviews and that would ruin the average. But, median numbers are a good way to show statistics in a useful way. The P20 listings with the poorest clicks had only one or two reviews if any. It seems clear that the most definitive analytic that can cause your listing to perform well or poorly is reviews, the quantity, quality, and having a few recent reviews as well.

Experience
People lie when they document their number of loans. Other people do not keep their experience up to date, so they are showing artificially low numbers of loans signed. Another issue that has come up in the last few years is that Purchases and Structured Settlements have become common. But, are these to be considered “loans?” In my book yes, because they are a financial package and represent the same quality experience as a loan even though technically they are not a refinance.

People with the highest clicks had a median of 6000 loans signed while those with low clicks had only 3500. So, even if you have a lot of experience, it seems not to be enough.

Test Scores
For those of you who think my phone quizzes are inappropriate, unnecessary, rude or inconsequential — you are wrong. Test scores correspond to click popularity, and test scores are my second most critical analytic next only to reviews.

Notaries with p#20’s with the highest clicks were typically elite certified or at a minimum had a good quiz score of 80% or higher. Less than one in ten do poorly on my quiz by phone. Notaries with the lowest clicks in the p#20 category typically did not have any certifications and roughly half did well on my quiz. So, half of the listings with low clicks were competent Notaries compared to almost all competent in the high click range. This indicates that proving your skill to me does not guarantee performance, but is a big piece in the puzzle.

Notes
It is hard to put a score on someone’s notes. You could grade on thoroughness, detail, organization, writing style, uniqueness, etc. It might take a few minutes per notes section to give some type of a useful grade. But, based on brushing through many listings quickly, I learned that high placed listings had a 75% rate of having a high quality notes section while the p20’s with low clicks only had a 45% rate of having a high quality notes section. So, the same thing I have been telling you guys for over a decade has not changed. If you want to be popular on 123notary — get reviews, certified, and write a unique and factual notes section. Ask for help if you need any. I can’t write it for you but I can give commentary and help organize it.

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December 19, 2018

Beginner Notary 103 — Advertising on 123notary

Filed under: Advertising — admin @ 1:23 pm

Beginner Notary 103: Advertising on 123notary
Return to Table of Contents – Beginner Notary 103

123notary is the sole most popular source of title company jobs in the industry. People get more high paying jobs here than from any other site simply because we systematically scrutinize our site to provide the highest quality possible.

Top Place Listings
It is common knowledge that those who do the best on 123notary have a high placement (generally in the top three spots) and have a well filled out profile. Top spots are not always available. However, if you get the highest spot that is available, and get certified by us and get reviews, if something does become available, you are likely to be promoted to that spot. 123notary promotes the best to the top of the list as much as we can. So, don’t worry about how fast it takes to get to the top, worry about being the best and proving it.

Certification
123notary certification has been around since around 2004. We have made it a lot harder and those who have this certification get an average of 25% more clicks to those in similar positions who don’t have the certification. However, newer Notaries get more than double the clicks by having our certification as it represents credibility for a Notary who does not yet have a name in the industry. You need to prove yourself and bragging doesn’t cut it. Having 123notary claim how good you are means a lot more as we are a highly experienced and impartial judge of quality. Your title companies reviews also speak louder than words (well, at least louder than your words.) Third party credibility is the way to move forward, so put your efforts into getting it through prudent means.

Listing Costs
We price listings based on a complicated formula. You will need to ask for a quote for particular spots. Let us know what city and county you are in as prices depend on your particular location.

What Can You Expect?
Most people who fill their listing out thoroughly on 123notary claim that their listing pays for itself quickly. Many of our clients have been with us for more than a decade which speaks volumes about our quality. Results vary from Notary to Notary. Additionally, some Notaries have multiple listings where one listing will perform well and another will perform sluggishly. There is an element of trial and error, so I hope you give us a legitimate try and only judge us after you get some reviews on your listing.

For information on listings, call Carmen at 310-210-6319 or email us at info@123notary.com

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You might also like:

When did Notary Cafe become decaffeinated?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=21091

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

Compilation of posts about Snapdocs
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=21531

Elite certification will benefit you for the rest of your life
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=20770

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October 10, 2018

Title companies use the top three on 123notary

Filed under: Advertising — Tags: — admin @ 11:39 am

I talked to a few title companies in the last week. And Carmen has been talking to them for years. What I am hearing from all available sources is consistent. Title companies love 123notary, but they don’t use all Notaries on our directory. They typically either start at the top and work their way down, or only pick from the top three or the top several on any search result.

Some of you are in the top several placements on 123notary, but some of you are not. It is not always possible to get a top spot on 123notary. However, we recommend getting the highest spot you can get and then hope for an upgrade. I control who can rise on our directory and I base this on merit. If you have good reviews. 123notary certification, a good notes section, answer your phone, and are generally good in most respects, you would be very likely to move up the list. You don’t even have to do anything. Just display merit, and I will do the rest.

When someone drops out of a high spot, I look for someone downstream who has demonstrated merit, but also shows that they are willing to pay for a top spot. If someone is only paying $99, I might give them a higher placement for a few months at no cost if there is nobody paying who also merits the spot. But, if a candidate has paid $200 or above, I would choose them even if their track record is not as great as someone paying less.

I need long term candidates for high spots. Since high spots are not for free, they have to be willing to pay, but they also have to be good. That narrows it down a bit as you can see. My suggestion to you guys is to develop merit. Don’t just pay yourself on the back and tell others how great you are. Your self-praise and inexpensively earned credibility means nothing in the real world. Reviews from title companies and my personal seal of approval means everything. So, stop bragging and start studying and asking for reviews. Good luck.

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You might also like:

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

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

Do you compare yourself to others in the 123notary search results?
http://blog.123notary.com/?p=18882

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