Do you want to start a mobile notary business? If YES, here is a complete guide to starting a mobile notary business with NO money and no experience. If you are looking for a business to start with little or no money, mobile notary business is the ideal business to venture into. Aside from the fact that this business requires low start-up capital, it is also a highly profitable business venture. Mobile notary business in U.S is commissioned to witness the signing of important documents like affidavit, court summons, C of O, and other legal documents.
Notaries work as legal officers with the authority to certify affidavits, administer oaths, and take depositions. Notaries also help to prepare wills, mortgages, and other legal documents, which they certify with an official seal, as well as providing official witnessing of signatures.
Notaries are widely needed in real estate, finance, insurance, and legal aspects. It is a business that can be run from home that is why it is called mobile notary. It can equally be run by opening an independent office or working in conjunction with another business that is compatible with it such as insurance office, real estate office, or law office. Therefore, you have a lot of options to choose from if you decide to operate this kind of business once you are certified.
The most successful notary public are those who have been able to build a vast client base comprising of professionals who require notary public services. If you also want to be successful in this business, you need to build a diverse client base which will open several doors of opportunity for you.
If you are looking to get all the needed information that would guide you in starting your own mobile notary business, you may want to consider reading this article extensively.
19 Steps to Starting a Mobile Notary Business
Table of Content
- 2. Conduct Market Research and Feasibility Studies
- 3. Decide What Niche to Concentrate On
- 4. Know the Major Competitors in the Industry
- 5. Decide Whether to Buy a Franchise or Start from Scratch
- 7. Choose the Most Suitable Legal Entity (LLC, C Corp, S Corp)
- 11. Get the Necessary Professional Certification
- 12. Get the Necessary Legal Documents You Need to Operate
- 13. Raise the Needed Startup Capital
- 14. Choose a Suitable Location for your Business
- 15. Hire Employees for your Technical and Manpower Needs
- 16. Write a Marketing Plan Packed With ideas & Strategies
- 17. Develop Iron-clad Competitive Strategies to Help You Win
- 18. Brainstorm Possible Ways to Retain Clients & Customers
- 19. Develop Strategies to Boost Brand Awareness and Create a Corporate Identity
1. Understand the Industry
There is no published data on the size of the mobile notary business but we do know that there are about 1 billion notary transactions taking place in the United States each year.
This statistics also take into account the fact that most people under the age of 20 would require notary services less than those above 20 years. With the current US population believed to be at about 324 million, about 27% of this population would rarely need a notary, except for school related activities; while the remaining 73% account for most of the estimated 1 billion notary transactions each year.
Not everyone makes use of the mobile notary as some people still prefer to go to a notary at a bank, law firm, paralegal, title company, courthouse, credit union, accountant, shipping store, insurance agent, financial adviser, etc.
People patronize the mobile notary when they are not mobile or when confined to a hospital bed, nursing home, home-bound, assisted living, or incarcerated. The mobile notary is also used when people want to save time by having a mobile notary come to their location, or when they need a notary service after the walk-in notary services are closed for the day, or on holiday. The market size for mobile notary services mostly includes those who are not mobile and would prefer a mobile notary coming to them. It also includes several other businesses needing the service of a notary to come to the business location for a transaction.
With some of these positives associated with the mobile notary business, it is certain that the mobile notary industry will keep growing for years to come, and people will keep seeing it as a better and cheaper alternative.
2. Conduct Market Research and Feasibility Studies
- Demographics and Psychographics
The demographic and psychographic composition of those who require the services of a notary is not restricted to a particular age group neither is it limited to a particular location, but it cuts across people of different ages and income level. The demand for the mobile notary is lowest among the age group of 20 years as most of them only need it for school related activities. But its demand sharply rises for age groups above 20 years who would need it for various reasons. So, if you are looking towards defining the demographics and psychographics of your mobile notary business, then you should ensure that your service is readily available to every class of people.
3. Decide What Niche to Concentrate On
Here are some niches you can specialize in the course of your mobile notary business;
- Estate planning
- Real estate attorney
- Financial advising
- Clearing and forwarding agency
The Level of Competition in the Industry
There is no doubt that the mobile notary business has huge potential for growth, but it is also a highly competitive industry. There are no entry barriers associated with this business as anyone can venture into this business.
Distance or location is never a barrier in this business when competing for clients. All your clients demand from you is satisfactory service. You should try to satisfy your clients at a relatively cheaper price compared to your competitors. This will be a plus to your business as you would enjoy more patronage once your clients are satisfied with your service.
There are several other mobile notary business owners scattered all around the United States. So, if you intend to start your mobile notary business, you will definitely meet stiff competition not only amidst mobile notary in the United States but also all over the globe. Besides, there are larger and well established mobile notary companies that people are used to visiting, and you should be ready to compete with them for clients.
4. Know the Major Competitors in the Industry
There is no industry in the world that does not have well-known brands. These well-known brands are known to have done well for themselves over time. These people are highly regarded by clients and the general public. Some of these businesses have been in the industry for long thereby making a name for themselves through their exceptional service.
Here is a list of some of the leading mobile notary businesses in the United States of America;
- Jacksonville mobile notary
- Fort Worth mobile notary
- Fairfax mobile notary
- Chicago mobile notary
- Indianapolis mobile notary
Before starting the mobile notary business, you are expected to do a feasibility study. You will have several factors to consider in order not to fail in this business. One of the most important factors to consider is how to create a unique brand capable of standing out from among other competitors in the industry. You would also need to make extensive research and consultations. You also need to devise means to get a market share for your business by ensuring that you showcase your unique strength by making it attractive enough for your customers to notice you. You will need to write a comprehensive business plan to know if this business is viable for you or not.
Another thing to consider is how to source for start-up capital. This is very important as most major financial institutions will be more favorably inclined to lend to already established and successful mobile notary businesses than to a start-up business. You have to write an exciting business plan that would be able to convince the lending institution to provide capital for your startup business.
5. Decide Whether to Buy a Franchise or Start from Scratch
To start this type of business, you would be better off if you start from the scratch instead of buying a franchise. For this type of business, it is much easier to start and run it from the scratch to profitability than having to buy a franchise. Though it would take you some time, but you will surely start making your profit in the long run. People will patronize your products based on affordability and accessibility as against relying on a franchise.
It is also interesting to note that most of the big and successful mobile notary businesses all started from the scratch and they were able to gradually build a strong and solid business brand. However, it takes hard work, dedication and determination to achieve success in this kind of business.
6. Know the Possible Threats and Challenges You Will Face
If you decide to start your own mobile notary business today, you would most likely face a major challenge which is the presence of well – established mobile notary companies who are also offering the same services that you intend offering. The only way to avoid this challenge is to create your unique selling point within the market.
Some other likely threats you would face as a mobile notary company operating in the United States are unfavorable government policies, the arrival of a competitor within your business location and global economic downturn which usually affects spending power. There is hardly anything you can do to avert these threats other than to remain optimistic that things will eventually work for your good.
7. Choose the Most Suitable Legal Entity (LLC, C Corp, S Corp)
Starting a mobile notary business requires a strong legal backing. The legal entity you choose for this business will go a long way in determining the profitability and overall business growth. It could be quite challenging to choose a legal entity for your business.
When it comes to choosing the right legal entity for your mobile notary business, you have a plethora of options to choose from. These options range from limited partnership to general partnership, to limited liability company (LLC) which could be later upgraded to a “C” corporation, or an “S” corporation.
All these different forms of legal entities have their own advantages and disadvantages. This is why you need to carefully pick the most suitable one for your business.
Here are some of the factors to consider before you choose a legal entity for your mobile notary business; limitations of personal liability, tax, ease of transferability, admission of new owners and investor’s expectation.
If you carefully study the characteristics of the various legal entities to use for your mobile notary business, you will see that Limited Liability Company is the most suitable for this type of business. You can start this type of business as an LLC and then convert it to a ‘C’ corporation or an ‘S’ corporation in the course of the business, especially when you plan to go public and international.
When you upgrade your business to a ‘C’ corporation or ‘S’ corporation, it will give your mobile notary business enough boost to compete with major competitors in the industry and not just within the United States, but on the international stage; it will also help you to generate enough business capital from capital firms, enjoy separate tax structure and ease of transferability of ownership of the business; lastly you will enjoy flexibility in the aspect of ownership and management structures.
8. Choose a Catchy Business Name from the ideas Below
If you are looking to start a mobile notary business, it becomes really vital that you adopt a business name that would do your business good. Generally, when you want to choose a business name, it is expected of you to be creative in doing so. This is because whatever name you choose for your business will form a perspective for your business. It is usually the norm for startup entrepreneurs to follow industry trends when naming their business.
If you want to start your own mobile notary business, here are some catchy names you can choose from;
- SignIt mobile notary
- Dotman mobile notary
- Perfect touch mobile notary
- Legal way mobile notary
- Noteworthy mobile notary
9. Discuss With an Agent to Know the Best Insurance Policies for You
Choosing the right insurance policy is a good way to boost your business as its importance cannot be overemphasized. In most countries especially in the United States, you won’t be allowed to operate a business without having some of the basic insurance covers required to operate your business in the industry. Therefore, it is necessary when making your budget to make provisions that will cover for your insurance policy. You could also consult an insurance broker to guide you in choosing the best and most appropriate insurance policies for your mobile notary business.
Here are some of the insurance policies necessary to have if you want to start your own mobile notary business in the United States
- General insurance
- Liability insurance
- Payment protection insurance
- Business owner’s policy group insurance
- Equipment and Auto Insurance
- Hazard insurance
- Risk Insurance
- Workers compensation
- Health insurance
- Overhead expense disability insurance
10. Protect your Intellectual Property With Trademark, Copyrights, Patents
Most businesses need you to file for intellectual property protection/trademark, but the mobile notary business doesn’t necessarily need an intellectual property protection because you can run the business without running into any legal issues involving your company’s intellectual properties.
You might still decide to protect your company’s logo, as well as other unique documents important to your business. To register a trademark for your company, you should file an application with the USPTO. The final approval will be made by the attorney as required by the USPTO. It is really vital that you have your brainchild registered so that you would know how to deal with those who trample on your brain child accordingly.
11. Get the Necessary Professional Certification
There are some professional certifications necessary for you to have which would better position you to effectively run the mobile notary business in the United States of America. Below are some of the necessary professional certifications you are required to have in order to successfully run your own mobile notary business;
- Institute of real estate management
- American Society of Notaries
- National Notary Association
Please note that the law of the United States of America clearly states that all mobile notary businesses are required to obtain the appropriate license and certification.
12. Get the Necessary Legal Documents You Need to Operate
It is necessary to have the appropriate documentation in place before you start a business in the United States of America. Without the necessary documents in place, it won’t take time before the law catches up with you.
Here are some basic legal documents to get if you want to successfully run your mobile notary business in the United States;
- Business Plan
- Business License
- Certificate of Incorporation
- Business Incorporation Certificate
- Health Inspection Certificate
- Non – Disclosure Agreement
- Employee’s Handbook
- Tax Payer’s ID
- Employment Agreement (offer letters)
- Operating Agreement for LLCs
- Insurance Policy
- Apostille (if one intends to operate the business beyond the United States of America)
13. Raise the Needed Startup Capital
Financing a business can be a tough issue to handle. This is especially if the business you are embarking on is capital intensive. A mobile notary business can be started with small capital. You only have to get the right business location. To finance your mobile notary business, one of the first steps to take is to write a good business plan. With a workable business plan in place, it would be easier to convince your bank, investors, family, and friends to invest in your mobile notary business.
Below are some of the ways to source for start–up capital for your mobile notary business;
- Applying for loan from your bank
- Raising money from investors
- Selling shares to interested investors
- Source for soft loans from your friends and family members
- Raising money from personal savings and sale of personal stocks and properties
- Raising money from business partners
- Applying for business grants from government, non-governmental organizations, and angel investors
14. Choose a Suitable Location for your Business
Where you choose to locate your business is key to the success of the business. You need to be located in a place that is conducive enough for people to do business with you. Your business location is very crucial to the growth and success of your business, hence as an entrepreneur, you should be looking to rent or lease a facility in a visible location. Look for a location where the demography consists of businesses which are likely to need your product and choose a location that is well accessible.
You should also note that it is quite expensive to get a business facility in a good location. Hence you should be prepared to allocate enough funds in your budget for leasing/renting. If you are not well versed in choosing a location for this type of business, then you should talk to a business consultant or a realtor who would properly guide you in choosing the right business location for your mobile notary business.
15. Hire Employees for your Technical and Manpower Needs
The mobile notary business is a highly competitive industry. To thrive in this business, you have to be certified to run the business and you have to offer quality service to your clients. Apart from the technical aspect of the business, the manpower aspect is also of equal importance. You need to hire a qualified and competent staff to help you manage your business. The overall success of the business rests on the quality of staff you employ. You will need about 3-5 competent staff to start up this business on a small scale.
Service Delivery Process of the Business
To deliver excellent services to your clients, you need to ensure that some things are in place like hiring experienced hands, ensuring good client relationship, and treating your clients well. All this should be done while keeping your charges low compared to your competitors. To provide excellent service delivery, you need to ensure that you put your clients at the heart of what you do.
16. Write a Marketing Plan Packed With ideas & Strategies
To successfully run a mobile notary business, you need to come up with innovative and creative ideas so as to successfully carve out a market for yourself in the business.
So, when you are preparing the marketing plans and strategies for your mobile notary business, ensure that you prepare a personal and company profile that will be interesting and captivating. Apart from stating your experience and qualifications, you also need to clearly state your past achievement in the mobile notary business. This will help boost your chances and reputation while marketing your services.
Here are some of the ways to market your mobile notary business;
- Send letters of introduction about your business alongside your brochure to companies, entrepreneurs, and start–ups that might need your service
- Advertise in newspapers, TV and radio stations within your community
- List your business in local directories
- Engage in roadshows in targeted neighborhoods
- Promote your business via the internet and social media
- Engage in direct sales and marketing
- Make use of word of mouth for marketing and referral
- Employ marketing executives and business development officers to help you carry out direct marketing for your business
17. Develop Iron-clad Competitive Strategies to Help You Win
The mobile notary industry is a highly competitive industry, and you must come up unique and creative ideas to outsmart your competitors in the industry. Part of what you need to do to stay competitive in this industry is to continue to make available highly professional and affordable notary services for your clients. Organizations and people will always choose you if they know that you have a better option especially as it relates to professionalism and affordability.
Another strategy that you can adopt is to ensure that your business is well positioned and key members of your company are highly qualified in the industry.
18. Brainstorm Possible Ways to Retain Clients & Customers
In any business one decides to go into, one of the easiest ways to increase customer retention and attract new customers is by producing results. If your clients are satisfied with your services, they would not need to source for an alternative service provider.
If you can continue to improve on your customer service delivery, then you won’t struggle to maintain loyal customers.
Part of what you need to do to achieve this is to keep track of your clients’ satisfaction in order to improve your service delivery. When it comes to customer management and building a loyal client base, you should purchase a customized CRM software. With this software, you can easily stay in touch with your clients (you can carry out quick client satisfactory survey, you can introduce new products and prices easily and faster, you can keep track of important dates like their birthdays and other anniversaries while you felicitate with them, you can keep track of their progress, you can send bulk SMS and customized e – mails and above all, you can easily receive feedback and complaint from them).
19. Develop Strategies to Boost Brand Awareness and Create a Corporate Identity
Below are some means you could use to boost your brand awareness and create a corporate identity for your mobile notary business;
- Place adverts about your business on newspapers, magazine, and other electronic media platforms
- Sponsor community-based programs relevant to your business
- Advertise your business via the internet and social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Google etc)
- Place billboards of your company in strategic locations
- List your company in local directories
- Distribute fliers and handbills in target areas
- Advertise on your official website and look at ways to pull traffic to the site
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