Tag Archives: free

google my business free

Best Free Small Business SEO Tool? Try “Google My Business” (Now!)

Best free seo tool for any business is “Google My Business:” A lot of things have changed with both Google and the web in general over the years.

However, two things that haven’t changed online for businesses are the importance of:

  1. Establishing trust
  2. Achieving and maintaining a strong online presence

In case you haven’t noticed, Google has a bit of a monopoly on search, so your business can’t expect to achieve the latter without them, no matter how much SEO work you do. While there are a number of important factors in making sure your business has a strong presence online, a fast and free way to improve yours right now is called, Google My Business.”

In fact, according to Google, businesses that take advantage of this free tool are actually twice as likely to be considered by potential customers. All you need is a business with a mailing address and phone number.

Not easily convinced? Here are 7 more reasons why you should consider signing up for “Google My Business” ASAP:

1.) Manage your own Google listing

Why allow search engines to define your business? By verifying your business info on “Google My Business,” you can manage your business information, and tell your own story.

You can also add and manage important information like your business hours, address, and even add a link to your website. In fact, when someone searches on Google for an accountant, here’s what they might see:

google my business seo free

Typical Google search results, with Google My Business listings up top

*Those top results are all businesses that have a “Google My Business” listing, and you can see why they get most of the traffic!  

2.) Get on Google Maps

When you claim your business on “Google My Business,” you’re literally putting it on the map. In this case, it’s Google’s map, which is the most important one in the world for your local business, and preferred by 70% of iPhone users.

3.) Establish Trust

As a small business owner, you already know how important trust is. Increase trust by interacting with your customers through your “Google My Business” listing by responding to reviews and adding photos.

4.) GainValuable  insights about customers

Being a small business owner you probably appreciate data, right? Google My Business gives you access to lots of insightful data like who searched for your business and from where. You can even see exactly how many people called your business directly from the listing in Google’s search results and maps.

*Try Carbonite business cloud backup for free

5.) Integrate with Google Adwords

If you use AdWords, Google’s pay-per-click advertising, you’ll be able to integrate it together with your “Google My Business” listing. This will allow you to target local customers with optional (paid) advertising, and track the performance of each campaign.

6.) You can do it on the go

You don’t have to be at a desk to manage your business info on Google. In fact, you can manage and update your “Google My Business” listing from anywhere with their free app.

7.) SEO (Search results + Google Maps!) 

What other way can you get your business to the top of search results in one day?

8.) Did I mention this is FREE?

Very few things are truly “free” in this world. Whether it’s the promise of “free tax preparation,” a “free iphone,” or “free business cards,” it’s probably too good to actually be true. (*You might get free pancakes on your birthday, but you’ll feel guilty if you don’t order something else!) 

However, “Google My Business” is a rare exception to that rule.

Before you or your company spends a dollar on SEO for your business, make sure you cover the basics and take advantage of the handful of top-notch free marketing tools out there. In my opinion, “Google My Business” is at the top of that list, and you don’t even have to have a website; really, all you need is a business address and telephone number to get your business listed.

Check out “Google My Business” online here, and have your new business listing on Google search results and maps today!

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timeshare freebies presentations

Vacation Freebies: Are You Willing to Sit Through a Timeshare Presentation?

Sit through a presentation, get a great freebie – Getting free stuff, no matter how small, is always nice. However, the thrill-factor of scoring a bargain goes way up when the item is decidedly considered “big-ticket.” Vacation packages and hotel stays are two of those items.

It’s no secret that vacations are expensive, especially for families traveling together. Even if you manage to avoid paying for airfare by taking a road trip, hotel prices can add up quite a bit for multiple day stays.

Many families compromise on hotel quality in order to save money but you gotta admit that there’s something special about staying in highly-rated, sparklingly clean and comfortable accommodations with a host of guest-service amenities.

So, how can you possibly stay at a resort or hotel for free? Well, you’ll either have to pile up points as a frequent customer, or get creative.

Free hotel stays from “points” are elusive

The folks at Motel 6 may try their best, but it’s still not the same. Points programs for nice hotels are good to have but it takes a whole lot of paid stays to be able to eventually maybe get a one-night freebie.

Settling for discount hotels may be a necessity from time to time, but wouldn’t it be nice to break up the bleakness once in awhile with a stay in a fancy resort or high-end hotel — for free? That’s actually possible with timeshares, but you have to know how to play the game.

In exchange for a couple of hours of your spare time, you can stay in brand new resorts or even luxury hotels at a huge discount or free of charge, sometimes with extra perks like complimentary meals or show tickets thrown in. Here’s how:

You’ve seen the mailers. They’ve probably gone directly into your “file cabinet.” Those elaborate sales pitches for the luxurious townhouses or exotic resorts that you know you’ll never visit are quite ubiquitous.

Even if you’ve never gotten one by mail or email, you’re no doubt familiar with the routine – come see our lovely property and we’ll give you a prize just for coming to check it out and giving us your opinion.

timeshare free offers

Timeshare presentations

Marketing companies willingly give you all kinds of perks as part of their strategy to show their Timeshare properties to as many people as possible. The amount of money paid by the small percentage of people that DO buy, makes it well worth the effort for the companies to give away a ton of freebies and discounts.

Of course, the presenters for these timeshares don’t just want your opinion; they want your money. Like car salesmen, they work on commission, so they won’t give you freebies without putting up a fight!

Not only can you get discounted or free hotel rooms in places like Las Vegas, Orlando, Hawaii and Manhattan, but depending on the marketing company that’s offering the deal, you may also be able to land free tickets to Disneyland, free tickets to see a Broadway show or free $100 gift cards!

Timeshare freebies: So, what’s the catch?

To get your freebies, you simply have to attend a sales presentation in which you’re given information about the timeshare or vacation rental property.

In general, these kinds of presentations last for about an hour and a half and are often quite entertaining and interesting. After it’s over, you’re free to leave without any obligation to buy anything, but the catch is you have to leave! Your time is money, so if you get stuck for 3 hours, suddenly that $100 freebie isn’t such a great deal!

Still interested? If you’re planning on a vacation to a certain location anyway or if you’re interested in finding out more about an area, why not Google “timeshare tours offering free stays” for that location and see if you can sign up for a tour that coincides with the dates that you’d like to travel there.

Just make sure you do a little research before signing up for a “tour.” Read online reviews and make sure you don’t connect with any unpopular timeshare companies or shady businesses.

The most popular timeshare locations include Disney (Lake Buena Vista), Aruba, Hilton Head, Las Vegas, and Hawaii, so searches for those areas should yield good options.

timeshare free

Have an exit strategy

Keep in mind that you will have to be firm in declining the company’s offer to actually purchase a Timeshare because the salespeople do tend to be aggressive. Leaving a presentation can be harder than quitting match.com, so confirm with the staff when you arrive how long the presentation will take and set the alarm on your phone or watch.

Let the salespeople know that you’re on a time limit and that you have to leave after the allotted tour or presentation time. This should help in making sure that you get out of the meeting without too much fuss.

You should also have a reason ready for why you won’t be buying a timeshare. One suggestion is to say that your financial situation has changed since planning the vacation, and now it’s not in your budget.

Another creative idea to get out of a timeshare presentation is to have a friend call you or send a text at an exact time with “urgent news.” Maybe they can pretend to be your babysitter informing you that one of your kids just threw up, or that she’s locked out of the house.

Get creative here, but don’t be over the top or insulting! Don’t put up with a salesman going well beyond the advertised presentation time, and don’t forget to ask for your freebie on the way out!

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rooty tooty pancakes free

FREE: Rooty, Tooty, Fresh, & Fruity Pancakes from IHOP ($7 Value)

Free pancakes from IHOP: IHOP is giving away free pancakes when you signup with your email address at their website.

This freebie is part of their new marketing strategy, the “Pancake Revolution®(can revolutions be trademarked?) and promises, “pancakes to the people.”

So, just for signing up for the Pancake Revolution®, you get a full stack of their Rooty Tooty Fresh ‘N Fruity® Pancakes valued at $6.99. That’s 4 pancakes, plus fruit topping and whipped cream. Yum!

Free pancakes from IHOP (email signup)


Rooty, tooty, fresh, fruity, and “free”

Wasn’t “rooty, tooty, fresh, and fruity” a Little Richard song? Or, maybe it was the names of the kids in that boy band, One Direction?

Anyway, I don’t know where that name crazy came from, but after surviving for decades, I guess it wasn’t a bad marketing decision after all.

If going to IHOP once isn’t enough, you can stay enrolled and get more free food on your birthday and on the anniversary of joining the “revolution®”

Viva la revolution!… I guess? 

Rooty Tooty Fresh N’ Fruity Commercial (1988)

Remember this gem?

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shutterfly free 16x20 print

Shutterfly Free 16×20″ Print: $18 Savings!

logo shutterflyFree 16×20 print from Shutterfly: Do you have a photo that is worth of being printed as a small poster and framed? Here’s a great chance to get a Shutterfly 16×20″ large photo print for free.

Add a 16×20 print to any order, or just pay for shipping if you don’t buy anything else. Here’s the promo code:

shutterfly large format print free

16×20 large format prints from shutterfly

Shutterfly 16×20″ and other large-format prints are printed on Fuji Crystal Archive professional-quality paper stock for vibrant colors and brighter whites.

You can choose from matte, glossy or their new pearl finish. Have your image print to the very edge, or choose a classic black or white border for more of a poster-look.

Hopefully you have something better to print than this in large format!

*Shutterfly ships their freebies at “Standard” shipping rate. Click here to view Shutterfly shipping info.

Find 16×20 design design ideas on their Instagram page at: https://www.instagram.com/shutterfly/

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shutterfly free 8x8 photo book

Shutterfly: FREE 8×8 (Hardcover) Photo Book – Saves $30!

New Shutterfly customers get a free 8×8 photo book – One of the better deals for new Shutterfly.com accounts is this freebie for an 8×8 hardcover photo book. ($30 value!) These are great to add to an order, or just pay $7.99 for shipping.


free 8x8 book shutterfly

Free Shutterfly 8×8 photo book: travel, Disney, baby, more!

Whether it’s to preserve memories from a Disney or beach vacation, or as a Mother’s Day gift, an 8×8 photo book is a great gift idea. They have a ton of design templates, too; everything from Star Wars and Disney to year in review, wedding, birthday party or welcome baby.

They also have “story telling” designs, which are a great way to use your photos to tell the story of any of life’s occasions. Just look for the “S” icon.  Here are some sample 8×8 book designs:

sample shutterfly 8x8 book designs

sample shutterfly 8×8 book designs

Using this freebie at shutterfly.com

Just add an 8×8 book to your cart, and use the promo code at checkout! It might combine with other codes if you have items, like prints, in your cart. The 8×8 photo book is shipped at shutterfly’s “economy” speed, and takes about 6-8 days to arrive.

Need photo book design ideas? Check out Shutterfly photo books on pinterest.com

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» Shutterfly: Free 8×10 Print – Saves $8!

logo shutterflyGet a free 8×10 photo enlargement at shutterfly.com: The popular promotion for a free 8×10 print is back for at least a month! Save $8, when you choose signature cardstock.

Like all freebies from shutterfly, you have to pay for shipping, so sometimes it’s best to add it to an order with another item. That way, it averages the cost of shipping down.


shutterfly 8x10 print coupon

Free 8×10″ photo print from shutterfly.com

Get a free 8×10 enlargement with no purchase necessary. Choose their signature cardstock, and you save $8! Hopefully you’ll find a picture as amazing as the one we’re featuring on this site!

Tip: add a chicken to any portrait to make it AWESOME!

Related:

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turbotax not free taxes lobby

NOT Free? Why TurboTax Lobbies Against FREE & Simple Tax Returns

logo turbotax freeTurboTax doesn’t like “free” tax – For most Americans, the dread of tax season begins long before the calendar turns to April. When the first tax form comes in, Americans face a dreaded question of whether they want to put in all of the information themselves or pay a professional to do it for them.

Neither is a great option, as both of them require a time commitment and the compilation of all necessary forms and information to make sure that the return is as accurate as possible.

But what if there was a third option: having the return already prepared for you by the IRS and simply having to give it a once-over to confirm its accuracy?

Sound too good to be true? It is, for one reason: the tax preparation companies like TurboTax don’t want you to have that free option available to you.

Turbotax spends millions to lobby against free tax filing

turbotax lobbyist

Despite the fact that several European nations including Spain, Denmark, and Sweden already offer their citizens a return prepared by their government, TurboTax’s parent company Intuit and other tax preparation firms have been staunch opponents of bringing that same freedom to the United States. The reason is pretty simple: Intuit doesn’t want to lose the business of TurboTax customers who choose their software program to file their return.

Currently, TurboTax ranges from “free” for the most basic use to $135 for its top-of-the-line software. Most Americans don’t need the most expensive package, which is for small business owners, but neither do they qualify for the most basic level of tax preparation either, resulting in some kind of cost for them to figure out their taxes.

Having tax prep be “not free” is very lucrative for TurboTax

free signWhatever refund those Americans get isn’t the refund they receive, because before they can claim it, Intuit helps itself to a portion of the money as its fees for the service. That portion comes out to be just under $1.5 billion per year, an amount that Intuit doesn’t want to give up without a fight, as evidenced by the $13 million that the company has spent to lobby against bills that would give Americans the option of having the IRS compile their returns for them.

It’s no surprise that Intuit has fought so aggressively against such a program. Part of TurboTax’s appeal is that it’s supposedly the easiest and least expensive way to file taxes, as compared to meeting with an accountant and paying for their services. If an easier way exists, TurboTax’s appeal drops quite a bit, and in practice, the idea of having the IRS file returns for Americans has proven fairly popular.

The added irony is that the “free” version of TurboTax’s software can still cost you over $100 by the time you complete the filing process. Their premium versions can cost a lot more, even after the discount from a coupon or service code.

The state of California offered free filing of taxes

In California, the Ready Return program didn’t attract much attention, but the overwhelming majority of those few Californians who allowed the state to handle their return reported being happy with the process and said they would use it again.

That’s a problem for Intuit, which is why it’s openly admitted that it doesn’t want the government to be in the business of preparing returns for its potential customers. In the past few years, Intuit has gone as far as to claim that having the government file tax returns would be a massive expansion of big government, despite the fact that former president and noted small-government advocate Ronald Reagan was in favor of allowing the IRS to provide Americans with their returns.

Free federal tax returns would be optional

There’s another fact in there that Intuit doesn’t want its potential customers to know: nobody would be affected by such a change if they didn’t want to be. If someone didn’t trust the government’s math or liked the process of doing their own taxes, they’d still have the option to do their taxes themselves by opting out of return-free filing. Much like the program in California, which is now known as Calfile, an IRS filing would be completely optional for anyone who wants to take part.

But for those Americans in the other 49 states, TurboTax will remain one of only a few options for Americans for the foreseeable future. With so few options, all but the most tax-savvy of Americans will have no choice but to spend part of their hard-earned money on one of the most basic acts of citizenship there is… and in many cases, they’ll be giving that money to someone who wants to make sure that reality never changes!

Know someone who uses TurboTax? Please share:

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free business cards vistaprint

Vistaprint: 100 Free Business Cards? Not Really, Here’s a Better Promo

logo vistaprint redFree business cards from vistaprint.com: There’s an ongoing promotion that you’ve probably heard of by now for “free” business cards from Vistaprint. To make a long story short, you only save $5 or so going with these free economy-quality cards, as you still have to pay for shipping. I say go with their $500 for $9.99 deal instead. Here’s a link to both promotions for comparison:


vistaprint business cards

Vistaprint’s free business cards aren’t free; you still have to pay shipping

“There is no such thing as a free lunch. If you want to enjoy something you have to pay for it.” – Charles Hall

Ah, well said, Charles, and such is the case with Vistaprint’s free business cards. For years this was their signature promotion, and it really did wonders for their brand. The money they lost on giving away free business cards surely was a good investment.

But, times have changed, and they really don’t need to get their name out there at a loss any more. Not only to they give away fewer business cards for free (used to be 250), but now they are referred to as “economy” business cards. For years they also added their logo on the back of the card, which screamed, “cheap-o!”

Ouch! That’s not how most successful entrepreneurs get started. Maybe they would be good for your “economy” business, but who wants cheap-looking business cards, unless you are dropping them in a fish bowl to win a free lunch. (ironic!)

Skip the free business cards and spend $15 bucks on nicer ones

freebiespot womanAnyway, in this case you should gladly accept the up-sell you get on their site. skip the free cards and consider their “500 business cards for $10” deal (read review) instead. With shipping it ends up being under $15 for 500 “standard” business cards, which are nice enough to get the job done in most cases.

*Tip: If you are on their site looking at the standard business cards, scroll down and you’ll see customer reviews. Consumer affairs is where you’ll find negative reviews, which are helpful to read, too

Vistaprint’s “free” business cards: limited design selection

On top of being printed on thinner paper, you’ll be limited in design templates for their free business cards. Do you still need reason’s to skip their free business cards promo? Actually, you might find a use for them in other creative ways. Like as tickets for an event or something. Or, maybe you print them for your kids’ lemonade stand?

No one gives away free business cards any more

I just searched for similar promotions, and this is actually as good as it gets. I estimate Vistaprint must lose $3-5 every time someone uses this promotion, so it’s purely an investment to get your contact info and hope that you remain a customer. Well, no other printing services dare match this offer, so kudos to vistaprint.com for being the “tallest midget in the room” when it comes to free business cards!

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shutterfly free address labels_featured

Shutterfly: FREE Address Labels (Set of 24) – Saves $10

logo shutterflyGet a free set of return address labels from shutterfly.com: There are a lot of nice label design options at Shutterfly including seasonal labels, and ones that feature a photo. Although there is no purchase necessary, you’ll have to pay for shipping ($2.99) if you don’t buy anything else.

Free address labels from Shutterfly

*Use code: FREELABEL

*No expiration; should be ongoing. Expired? Latest Shutterfly offers here


shutterfly photo address labels free

Free address labels promotion at shutterfly.com

*source: http://omgphotos.com/shutterfly-free-shipping-codes/

Everyone can use address labels, right? Well, this is a great freebie to add to your order if you are a Shutterfly customer. However, you could say that these address labels are not truly “free” because you have to pay $3 for shipping if they are the only item that you are ordering.

Shutterfly has some nice design templates for their labels including wedding & floral designs, and a number of various font options.  There are a number of Holiday / Christmas / Winter themed labels to choose from. Their printing is really sharp, so you can consider featuring a favorite photo in the address label design, too.

shutterfly address label sample

Not truly “Free” address labels, but worth paying shipping

Bottom line: I got a free set of these, and even though they aren’t totally “free,” ($3 shipping cost) I think these are probably worth it because they are really nice. Although I’d never buy these (or any other) address labels for the $9.99 retail price, they are definitely worth adding onto an existing order from Shutterfly.

shutterfly wedding address labels

sample wedding address labels w/ photo

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snapfish free prints

Snapfish: FREE Prints for a Year w/ App Download (New Customers)

snapfish logo blueGet 100 free 4×6″ prints when you signup & install the Snapfish App: The competition between photo-sharing sites is brutal, which means you are the winner! If you signup with a new account or email address, download, and log into the Snapfish app they will credit you with 100 free 4×6 prints every month for 12 months. Sweet!


100 free prints month snapfish

Snapfish Free Prints with App download offer for New Customers

So, this freebie is pretty straight-forward; basically you have to signup a new account with Snapfish, then download their app, and log into the app.

*source: http://omgphotos.com/snapfish-promo-codes/

After doing so, your account will be credited with 100 free 4×6 print credits every month for 12 months. Here’s more about how it works:

  • For new Snapfish customers only
  • Unused credits will expire at the end of each month
  • 100 new print credits are added on the first of each new month
  • Credits only work towards “mail to me”, and not in-store pickup at CVS or Walgreens
  • No promo code is needed
  • The free prints must be ordered through the Snapfish App, not online through snapfish.com
  • Excludes collage prints and 4×6 wallet prints
  • Shipping is extra

If you have already signed up and logged into the app but don’t see new credits for this month, you can log out and then log back in to see the credits.

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