Yoast SEO Plugin for WP site

Have you ever heard of SEO? When you have a website you want people coming there and see the content right? There are many ways how to do that. One of them is SEO. I personally think is the most important tool and the fun is the cheapest way how to achieve the goal that your website appears in the first page on Google.


This blog is built on the WP platform. I already mentioned in this article about hosting . I love WP because it allows people without web development experience to create nice websites and also completely managed it. You can also optimize your SEO with many free plugins and there are tons of videos and tutorials on YouTube on how to do that. One of them is the Yoast plugin. It’s probably the most popular plugin and I also use it on this website. Just recently set up according to this tutorial. below. Hopefully, we will see some results soon!

Does Hosting Affect Website Speed?

The answer is pretty short and simple. Undoubtebly!

In the beginning, I would like to tell you what I consider a website speed or loading time. For me, it means how quickly some website is loaded when you search for it in the browser. It sucks when you have to wait even a couple of seconds before the wanted page appears on the screen. It is really annoying when it takes so long to properly display content like images or videos.

I recently changed my hosting provider from Inmotion Hosting to SiteGround. Well guys I don’t wanna deeply review those two providers. However I just wanna admit that Inmotion works good when your website focus on visitors from US, then it’s fast and slightly cheaper compare to SiteGround. Another big advantage of Inmotion hosting is their customer’s support. I had been with them for two years and they had alwsays helped me with any problem in chat. On the other hand when you want to think more globally and focus on readers from whole world than SiteGround is definitely better choice.

I am currently in Europe and working on my first US business so I can really compare website speed and SiteGround works much faster even if their servers are in Iowa in the USA. I mentioned servers I hope you all of you know what server is and if not google it! Actually before you buy your webhosting you can choose the location of the server for your website. I decided to select that one in US primary because my business is mainly dedicated for Americans customers but i hope we can also offer good service for rest of the world. You might ask where Inmotions’s servers are? They are also in US but for some reason in Europe it works pretty bad. I guess is due to SiteGround has servers on many places and they are somehow connected so it’s faster but this is only my assumption 🙂 I am not IT expert but for me is important it works quickly everywhere on the Earth!

What I also want to say is fact that SiteGround is officially recommended as a hosting provider by WordPress and this whole website is built on the WP platform. If you don’t know WP just search it, read it, learn it! My little advice for you, don’t be lazy and try to use the internet as much as you can in order to get any information that will help you to search for something new and useful! There is a true example related to this article. I was not satisfied with the loading speed of this website so I went on Google and search something like Best hosting for WP 2021 or Fastest WP hosting. Then did some research, read some articles, and watched some videos on YouTube for this topis and the result is I bought this new hosting and I am truly satisfied.

If you are considering change hosting provider but already have an existing WP site and don’t wanna lose it, SiteGround offers a free migrator and works perfectly! I have personal experience just a couple of days before and it works perfectly!

What WP hosting do you use guys?

How to incorporate – Step by Step!

The USA is still considered as a land of opportunity. Many people from around the world want to live their American dream and become rich and successful. I personally believe that the US offers uncountable opportunities. The United States of America is the most populated English speaking country and has one of the biggest economy in the world. Almost anybody has a chance to start a business here even he or she is not a US citizen or resident! It means you can start a business as a non-resident or foreigner.

Even anyone can start and incorporate the business, and manage the company in the US. It doesn’t mean that you can permanently and legally live in the USA! Be aware you cannot actively work or be employed in your company unless you don’t have a proper visa. If you are interested in obtaining the proper visa please visit the official website. Probably the most popular visa for entrepreneurs is an E-2 visa. I can only recommend you search on Google, there are many articles about that. I am not a lawyer and everything I write here are my personal experiences. Not legal advice.

Who is a foreigner?

First of all, I want to explain who I consider as a foreigner. It is important to understand and avoid misunderstandings. For me, a foreigner is someone who is not an American citizen or American resident (green card holder) Sometimes I am going to use term non-resident. If you have a green card you can legally work in the USA and you have more options when it comes to starting a business.

In this article, we are going to mainly focus on the process of incorporating your first business in the USA as a non-resident. This post is primarily for foreigners however I hope it can also help domestic readers who are interested in forming their first business. I chose the business structure called LLC because I have personal experience with that. However, we will lightly cover both business entities that are suitable for foreign citizens.

1. Choose the right business structure

Types of Business Entities in the USA

There are basically four main types of business entities in the US.

  • Sole Proprietorship
  • Partnership
  • LLC
  • Corporation (INC)

As a non-citizen, you have probably only two possible options. It is an LLC and a corporation. If you are an American citizen or you have a green card you can also consider become sole proprietorship or be involved in some partnership. As a foreigner, you cannot start a business as a sole proprietorship or be part of some partnership. If you want to know more about all these types read this article. Now let’s introduce the two most popular types of business structures you can form and own as a non-American citizen.

LLC

Limited Liability Company is probably more simple than a corporation when it comes to management structure. Technically is LLC not a corporation but has similar advantages as a corporation. The biggest one is that members are protected from personal liability for business actions and decisions. LLC has typically one owner he or she is called a member or more owners that are called members.

How we call owners?

  • Member – owner
  • Members – more co-owners

Each member owns a certain percentage of interest in the LLC and the profit can be distributed in any way the members want to. A very important fact is there is no required annual meeting of members which saves your time and money.

Who manages the LLC?

Member or members typically manage the LLC. There is another option though. You can also hire someone else and then we use the term manager or group of managers. However, also a member can be a manager and you will choose this when you will incorporating your business. I suggest you choose that your LLC will be managed by the manager especially when you are a non-American resident.

Corporation

Corporation has very similar legal protection but the main difference is that owners are called shareholders because corporation issues shares and each shareholder owns the number of shares that shows percentages of his or her ownership. If you consider later sell some shares to investors in order to gain financial support for your business or startup then it is the right decision because most of the venture capitalists invest only in corporations. However, if you plan to own and manage your business by yourself than LLC is better option. Who manages the Corporation? Boards of directors

Another difference is that every corporation is required to hold annual shareholders meetings and this will increase your annual costs.

Tip: Form an LLC if you are a business beginner, startup, online business or you are starting from scratch. If you focus with your business to venture investors then form a corporation

2. Find the best incorporation service

When I was younger I tried to do everything by myself. It’s good to save some money and to know what you pay for and have some general overview but sometimes it is better to use some professionals instead of wasting time especially in cases when you later realize that you cannot do it by yourself for legal reasons. My advice is to put more energy into your business and earning money instead of wasting time. However, still stay smart and don’t waste money without reason. You must find some balance!

TIP:
Form an LLC if you are a business beginner, startup, online business or you are starting from scratch. If you focus with your business to venture investors then form a corporation

3. Select state for your business

The important question is what state should I choose for my business. Generally, the best advice is to choose the state you plan to be present with your business. For example, if you want to open a store in New York City then you should incorporate your LLC in the state of New York, in this case, you actually have to. But what if your business will be online and you do not know what state to choose? There are some very popular states below. For online and global businesses are probably best Nevada, Delaware, and Wyoming. I mentioned California because it is the biggest and probably the most popular state in the US.

Nevada

  • no corporate state tax
  • $425 LLC filling cost
  • $350 LLC annual fee

Wyoming

  • no corporate state tax
  • $100 LLC filling cost
  • $50 LLC annual fee

Delaware

  • 8,7% corporate state tax
  • $90 LLC filling cost
  • $300 LLC filling cost

California

  • 8,84% corporate state tax
  • $70 LLC filling cost
  • $800 LLC annual fee

What is LLC filling cost? It is the one-time price you have to pay typically to the state for LLC registration

What is LLC annual fee? It is a fee you have to pay typically every year in order to keep your business alive. Sometimes it is called an annual report or franchise tax.

Tip:
Remember that each state has different rules but everything is very similar. If you are considering different state just google it!

4. Choose business name

Rule number one do not pick the name that is already occupied. You have to find a name for your business that is free. Below you can find the links where you can check LLC name availability for mentioned states!

LLC name Search

Tip:
You don’t have to search for a name if you hire commercial service that will search for you but if you want to speed whole process of your LLC registration then click to links above and search by yourself. It is pretty easy!

5. Hire a registered agent

What is registered agent? A registered agent is a person or company with a responsibility to receive legal mail on behalf of your LLC. For instance, some federal or state organizations will send you some mail and the registered agent must receive it and should contact you immediately. Let’s say you registered your LLC in state of California so your registered agent has to have a physical street address (cannot be PO Box) in California.

Who can be registered agent? There basically three option

You

  • must have a street address in the state
  • only for US citizens or residents
  • not for foreigners

Friend or Family

  • must have a street address in the state
  • for US citizens or residents
  • can work for foreigners

Commercial Service

  • must have a street address in the state
  • for US citizens or residents
  • for foreigners

Tip:
Hire commercial service especially when you are from abroad. You will be sure that all important documents will be forward or scan to you!

6. File Articles of organization

How to send money to US bank from abroad?

five-dollars

Recently I described how to open a business bank account in the US. Today I will show you a fast and cheap way to send money from your country to your bank account in the US. Let’s imagine that you are starting for instance an online business from abroad. I mean you are not present in America yet but you already incorporated business and opened a bank account. You need to pay some business expenses and sometimes you have to add money to that bank account. Or even you can be already in US but you need more money so you send and transfer your savings from your currency.

I use service TransferWise and I can tell you it works perfectly. It is cheap, fast and I would say secure. I have never had any problems. It is completely online!

It is easy to sign up and there is no monthly fee. You only pay when you send the money.

How do they work? I guess that TransferWise has bank account almost in every country. So you can conveniently send money to them from your currency. Let’s imagine that you are from Germany and your currency is the euro. You wanna get exactly $1000 to your American bank account so you set up that amount of money in your account. At this moment it is approximately 853 euro and the fee is less than $6 for this transaction. I guarantee you it’s far cheaper than using a standard bank transfer from german bank to the US bank. So you set up the amount of money, then add recipient (can be you) and decide wheater you send a standard bank wire or pay with credit or debit card (it is slightly more expensive but faster) Finish transaction and save or print screen the transaction (just for your safety) Usually during 2-3 business days you can expect money on your US bank account.

Just be careful when you are adding an account and routing numbers.

I hope there are plenty of similar services but I believe that TransferWise is one of the famous ones and it works properly.

Remember this is not only for the business you can always use it as a person. You can send money to your friend, to your family, whatever.

Hope it helped you guys and ask me in comments below!

Bank account for your USA business – My Experience

credit-card

This could be very tricky and there is no general advice. At first, I will tell you the story of how I successfully opened bank account for my US LLC and at the end of the article some summary. In 2017-2018 I was in Toronto on Working holiday visa in Canada. I decided to establish my first US company and because of tax benefits, I formed LLC fully online in Wyoming. After receiving ITIN number I wanted to open bank account. Without bank account, it’s hard to start any business especially today in the modern world when you need somehow receive payments from your customers right. I remember I wanted to open a bank account in some Wyoming’s bank so I called some banks and sent many emails and thought they would be able to open by phone or online. Every call or email started similarly: We can open a bank account for your company if you have SSN. If you don’t know what SSN is read this. Of course, I did not have SSN as a foreigner.

Okay, what now? I had Wyoming LLC but cannot open bank account from Toronto. I considered the option I would fly to Wyoming and try to open a bank account in person. Flights were very expensive so I decided to rent a car and go to Niagara Falls in state of New York. It’s only 1.5 hours by car. That day I visited over 5 different banks and they had usually two requirements.

  1. The company is officially registered in NY state as a domestic or foreign LLC
  2. You as a person can prove your personal US address
  3. Sometimes they wanted SSN

I was desperate because in less than a week I was going back to Europe and definitely wanted to have prepared US company for some business including bank account.

Finally, I visited Key Bank and talked to the nice bank clerk and she told me that they only want to that the company is registered in NY. I was happy and tell her I’ll be back when my LLC is registered in NY. During the way back to Toronto I checked Niagara Falls.

Niagara Falls – February 2018
After arriving I immediately registered my WY LLC in state NY as a foreign LLC. We will talk about this topic, what is domestic and what is a foreign LLC in a different post. A few days later I visited that bank branch again and successfully opened checking bank account and apply for my first debit business card! This story might sound crazy and it is. But trust me I heard many similar crazy stories from other entrepreneurs that it wasn’t easy for them to open bank account. Summary: Before you want to open bank for you US business have prepared this:
  • form business entity such a LLC or another different type of company
  • have physical address for your company in US
  • have already ITIN number for your company
  • visit banks in person in the same state where your company is registered
  • bring personal IDs such a passport or driver’s licence
  • bring articles of organization
I hope this article will help you to avoid the same struggle that I had! I also found this company. They should be able to open a bank account for your US company when you are not US resident. They claim it is possible online and you don’t have to be even in person in the US. However, I don’t have personal experience with them so search more by yourself.

How to obtain US number from abroad

iphone

Being the owner of some business has several advantages. One of them is you can get more affordable phone plans. I personally use this wireless provider. They work on the T-Mobile network and I have never had a problem with coverage. You can get an unlimited phone plan with unlimited 4G LTE Data for only  $40 per month + tax which is good. There is no contract so once you need close your line you can without any problem. This provider offers plans only for businesses and you have to prove it with an EIN number. For those who does not know what EIN number is please read this post.

If you plan come to US from abroad I highly recommend you have prepared US SIM with your US number before arrival. I remember when I arrived to LA for the second time and had only number from my country in that time. For some reason the data did not work and I got so lost in airport. For my generation being without internet espicially in new place it’s pretty crazy. I wanted to use Uber in order to get for my rent car and instead of that I had to take very expensive taxi.

You’re probably wondering how to get SIM card to your country if you don’t have address or someone else who could receive your SIM in US. I’m pretty sure that most of the phone providers will only send you your new SIM to some US address. There is pretty good service known as a mail forwarding that enable you use US address so you can comfortably receive any mail or package and then decide to forward anywhere in the world.  It’s cheap and it works.

If someone has a better offer for phone plans than I use please write a comment below! This blog is here in order to help get better information  and possibly save our money

Learn English First!

abraham-lincoln

My little advice for all non-native speakers is pretty simple!

Learn English First! – Before you start the first business in the US.

Of Course, you don’t have to be perfect and fluent but you should be able to communicate and more importantly understand. It will also help you be more confident in business. Look at me I am not perfect, my grammar is probably bad and sometimes it’s still hard to express myself but honestly, I feel already comfortable to run business.

Do you need motivation? Here it goes 🙂

It is almost 4 years since I visited the US for the first time. I was 24 years old and honestly thought that I had pretty good basics of English. I remember how I was preparing in Europe every day for almost 2 months before I went to NYC.

After arrival at JFK, it was a big shock for me. I went to some grocery store and I didn’t understand anything that was cashier telling me.

The second day I was on my way to the nearest T-Mobile store in order to buy my first US number. I spent there a really long time and with big problems, I got my first SIM with US number!

After 1 week when I was really frustrated about my ability to understand, one of my friends recommends me to visit an English school in Manhattan. For the next 2 months, I had been attending this school from Monday to Thursday for 4 hours every day. Later when I was leaving NYC I was able to understand and more importantly talk to someone else!

I studied in this school: https://www.learnenglish.com/

I would highly recommend to anyone who still struggles with English don’t be shy and join some English classes and try to talk to Americans every day. Just use every opportunity to be in touch with English. People don’t care if you are not perfect, they will help you when they see your effort to speak!

In my time in Canada, I was a student in this school

After one year in Toronto, I was able to incorporate my own company, find a bank and open bank account, call to IRS and obtain EIN. Why am I writing this? It’s annoying but everything takes some time but in my example, you can see improvement. First time in the US I almost did not understand. Today I write the blog in English!

What else helped me? Reading books in English! What I would recommend: Start with some easy book or the best way is to read about some topic you really like it! For instance, I like Arnold so I chose his bio. However, you can read whatever you like!

What is my business in Europe?

seat-leon-cupra-sp




Well, I come originally from the Czech Republic. The country next to Germany. You might ask why I mentioned Germany? First of all most of you will probably know Germany rather than the Czech Republic so you can see where I come from but this is not the main reason. I am CEO and co-owner in the car business. Our company buys brand new cars in our country (Czech) and sell them to car dealers mostly to Germany. This business is called re-export. It is probably important to mention I used to work as a business sales manager in a local car dealership a couple of years ago so it helped me start this business. The fun is that I didn’t like to be an employee but thanks to this work experience I run this business today.

The whole point is that we are able to find and buy cars cheaper in our country or cars that are not available and sell them to dealers in EU. Thanks to the fact that Germany is probably the strongest economy in the EU their citizens and businesses can afford mostly new cars. It is not a secret that countries from the post-soviet union or let’s say from eastern Europe sell many cars, all brands to richer western Europe. Sometimes it no makes sense to make new VW Golf in a factory in Germany – then sells it to VW dealer to Czech Republic where our company buys it and sells it back to some EU dealer in Germany. But it brings me money so I don’t care!

New Seat Leon Sportwagon 2020 that we just sold to Germany (Seat is originally a car brand from Spain currently not sold in North America, however, the car is a twin with VW Golf MK8)

Last year we sold over 200 cars and had an annual turnover of $3.7M and this year (2020) even in this COVID shit we are going to sell something between 400-500 cars and hopefully have a turnover of $7-9M! I love this business, especially for one reason. I can manage it almost completely online so I don’t have to be present in Europe. I don’t like businesses that keep you in someplace as a slave. The reason I do business is that it brings freedom or it will one day.

Above you can see three new Seat Leons loaded on the truck waiting for transport to their new customers in Germany.

A similar example could be that someone buys cars in Canada or in Mexico and sells them to the US. By the way, if there is someone from you guys who are involved in some car business in the US and knows if this works here then don’t hesitate to contact me and discuss. I am interested to talk about that because I personally believe that the schema of business could be very similar and why not to try do this business in the US.