Continue reading "Steps to take to make your small business successful"
Studies have shown that successful business owners all share certain traits. These traits are characteristics help them to take the steps that will insure that their small business is successful. If you are considering starting your own small business, it can be helpful to go over these traits and learn from others experience. You can take what you have learned here and parlay it into a successful small business of your own. Here are steps to take to make your small business successful-
Continue reading "Marketing strategies that will increase your small business"
There are certain marketing strategies that can be highly effective, especially for small businesses. However, inexperienced business owners sometimes overlook these solutions in the day to day running of their businesses. It is important to realize that marketing is much more then simply advertising the products or services, that you sell. Marketing is about finding the correct target market, and then positioning your product or service, to meet the needs or wants of that target market. Marketing is an ongoing process and can be dynamic and changing, as the needs of the market changes. Successful marketing involves having goals and plan, then implementing that plan in the best possible way. However, you should keep in mind that this does not have to be a complicated process. Here are marketing strategies that will increase your small business-
Continue reading "How to make your small business better"
All business owners are always looking for ways to make their company better. This is true no matter the size of their company. However, for business that are small or starting out, improvement can mean the difference between long-term survival or a quick fade out, from the marketplace. There is not any business that is not improving or failing, you must be moving forward, or you are just quickly falling behind. Small business owners must realize that improving your business is the result of a proactive effort. You must be able to dedicate a segment of your time and effort, to improve your business. In addition, you must also carefully choose where improvement will make the largest impact in your business. Here is what you need to know about how to make your small business better-
Continue reading "How to help your small business survive hard times"
There are several different events that can seriously affect your small business. And since most small businesses start out with fewer cash reserves, these climatic events can literally shake their foundations. Whether it is the economic climate, internal problems or a market collapse, all of these problems can test a small businesses ability to survive. Savvy small business owners understand that in order to have their business survive these types of events, they must have a plan and survival quit attitude. Understanding how to deal with these problems, before these events take place is also crucial to a small businesses chance for long-term survival. Here is what you need to know about how to help your small business survive hard times-
Continue reading "How to grow your small business"
Most small business owners understand that the success of their business, depends on the contend nourishment that it is given. If you want your small business to grow into something much bigger, there are certain steps that you have to take. Here is what you need to know about how to grow your small business.
Continue reading "How will budgeting and forecasting help to improve your business"
Want to improve your business? One of the easiest ways to do so is by using proper budgeting and forecasting. You need to learn how to control your books to stay in business. Without organization, you won't have an idea as to where your business finances are at and if you are paying your vendors and employees on time and to ensure that you aren't spending more than you are making. Proper forecasting will help you get a good idea as to where your marketing efforts need to be at and if you are budgeting appropriately.
Continue reading "Boosting sales in your small business"
Every business owner understands the fact, that his or her business is not immune to a decrease in sales. There are many different factors that affect this which can include: new competition, unproductive employees, lack of confidence by customers, or changing conditions within the market. Small business owners can especially feel the heat as they compete with larger competitors. However, there are steps that you can take to help increase sales at your company. Here is what you need to know about boosting sales in your small business-
You are always going to have someone that tries to tell you what marketing techniques you need to participate in and why you should participate in them. Case studies can help you learn about your small business market but you shouldn't swear by them as they are not always effective ways to learn about the needs of your customers. Case studies can often tell you about what makes a customer satisfied and why they buy your products and services. Some companies place a high amount of value on case studies for the information they do provide while others don't really get much out of them.Continue reading "Are case studies really all they are cracked up to be?"
There are certain characteristics that successful small businesses share. Often times small business owners give the same advice over and over again, on how they made their small businesses work. There is no denying the fact that starting a small business is hard, and keeping it up and running, is even harder. However, if you are worried about the long term survival of your business, the best thing to do is focus on doing it right, from the beginning. Here are some tips for a successful small business-Continue reading "Tips for a successful small business"
If you are a small business owner you may feel overwhelmed with the management of your company. It can seem that the day to day details of running your business, are keeping you, from managing the big picture and putting your small business on the path to long-term profitability. However, it is sometimes those very day to day details, if they are managed correctly can help insure success for your small business, while ignoring them or not managing them, can speed your small business down the path to failure. If you allow chaos to make its way through your small business, you may find that everyday tasks become unmanageable and productivity drops. However, the good news is that you can take control of your small business, by using some very simple steps. Here are some steps for managing your small business-Continue reading "Steps for managing your small business"
If you are a small business owner, you may be constantly worried if you are doing things right. However, it is just as important to avoid some common mistakes. Experienced small business owners have shared the mistakes they have made, so that other people can learn from them. Keep in mind that mistakes are going to happen, however, if you can avoid the serious ones, you will have a much better chance of making your small business successful. Here are small business mistakes you need to avoid-Continue reading "Small business mistakes you need to avoid"
It's important to understand that now everyone can or even should run a small business. If you are considering starting your own small business, there are certain factors that you should take into consideration. Starting a small business, can be a life-changing event. While being in control of your own destiny and your own money, can lead to the life you have always wanted, there are certain things that you need to be aware of. While most people find the appeal of being their own boss and setting their own hours as motivation enough to start their own business, few people consider the time and effort that it will take to be successful. So if you are considering taking this giant step, here are reasons to start your own small business-Continue reading "Reasons to start your own small business"
As a small business owner, you will start to learn new skills and talents quickly. If you have never tried to raise capital for your business, it won't take you long to learn that this is something you have to learn if you want to continue to be successful in your industry. Raising capital is easy to do once you understand the basics of it and you are successful with it. Initially it's not going to be easy but over time you can overcome frustration and stress that is part of it and you will be able to smoothly grow your business.Continue reading "Knowing how to find capital to start your business"
What is a small business plan and how can you get the most out of it? A small business plan is necessary to acquire financing for your company but it is also necessary to help you get organized and to know where your business is headed. The business plan needs to have renovations done to it every few years in order to strengthen your businesses appeal to investors and to also show banks that your business is headed forward and that it is strong. To get the most out of your business plan, you have to know why and how to write it. Here are the basic components behind a business plan:Continue reading "How to get the most out of your business plan"
Do you know what you need to do in order to acquire a small business grant? How can a small business grant help your company? There are so many things a small business grant will be able to do to help your small business get started. For one, you don't need to repay a small business grant. Secondly you can acquire the money easily, which is unlike a loan where you can face multiple rejections. Third, the government offers small business grants and by filling out the application your companies name can be submitted to multiple grantors to offer you a small business grant.Continue reading "How do I get a small business grant?"
Getting a loan for a small business is rough but finding investors for your business can be equally as hard as not too many people are willing to offer money to small businesses. A small business is not proven and therefore you have to wait awhile before you will be able to find investors and others that willingly offer you money for your business.Continue reading "How can I find investors for my small business?"
If you have made the decision to start your own business, you will need to make the decision to work hard to make the business attractive to lenders. You want lenders to feel that this is a risk-free investment and that they will be able to acquire great profit from your company. To do this, you have to do your homework and you must be able to show lenders what they want to see in order to have a desire to invest in your company.Continue reading "Requirements to acquire a loan through the SBA"
To apply for a loan you will need to create a written loan proposal. A loan proposal will allow you to tell the lender why you deserve a loan and how you will be able to repay the money that is leant to you. The way the loan proposal is organized and the way in which it is presented will be able to show the lender why you are a trustworthy investment and why they should consider taking a risk on your company. Here are the things you want to follow when you are preparing a written loan proposal.Continue reading "Preparing a written loan proposal"
There are multiple things that go into a business plan. How can you create a business plan that will be successful? Here are some easy steps to follow that will help you to create a business plan and to also organize a business plan.Continue reading "Organizing a business plan"
Small business owners have tremendous roles and responsibilities placed on their shoulders. Do you know how to manage your business effectively and are you able to identify your small business strengths? You must be able to identify your strengths and bring them out for certain situations that will allow you to move forward effectively with your business.Continue reading "Matching your business strengths to opportunities"
In order to operate a small business, you will need to have a small business license. This allows you to operate legitimately. A small business license is easy to acquire and it will only take a few minutes to apply for. It is different for each state so it is important to check on your states licensing procedures in order to acquire the license. Check online to see if you can apply for it online. The good news is that it is not hard to acquire a small business license is very easy to acquire as you just need to acquire a few documents and provide them to your state and fill out the application. Here are some easy steps you need to follow in order to get a small business license:Continue reading "What do I need to do to get a small business license?"
There are so many different aspects you must consider as you are working on starting a small business or trying to manage one. Business finances are an important component of any business and the breakeven is one financial component you need to pay close attention to. The breakeven analysis allows you to see if you are producing and selling products for a fair cost and that you are getting a good return from them. The breakeven analysis can determine where you need to change prices in order to boost profitability for the business.Continue reading "Creating a breakeven analysis"
As you get started with your small business, calculating your startup costs is one thing that you must do. Startup costs allow you to see how much money you need to acquire from lenders and then you will move forward with additional loans in the future for expansion. The problem that most small business owners face is that there is not a "formula" that allows them to calculate their startup costs because it is different for every organization. Do you need money to help build up your inventory to get started or will you be able to get by with just the basic startup supplies that help you generate just enough cash flow to cover your expenses?Continue reading "Adding up your startup costs"
Thanks to the large popularity of small business owners encouraging their friends to start their own companies, we have a lot of new small businesses on our hands. The problem is that not everyone is cut own to be a small business owner and they all do not come with the same type of skills when it comes to business finances.Continue reading "A crash course to business finances"
It is important that small business owners carefully consider where they will physically place their business. This is important since the cost of the physical location, for your small business's daily operations, can be one of the most significant costs that you are faced with paying as the business owner. The decision to rent a space should be carefully and only if working out of your home is not a viable option, and buying your own business location is out of the question. The bottom line is that renting is a good solution, if it is done right. Here is what you should know about renting a location for your small business-
If you are a small business owner or manager, there are certain tasks that must be done on a consistent basis. These tasks may seem mundane but they can make the difference between a small business that flourishes and one that just fades away. It is important to keep in mind that small business management is a skill that you can fine tune over the years, but there are some simple things you need to do now, in order to manage your business successfully. Here are some tips for managing your small business-Continue reading "Tips for managing your small business"
Marketing research can be crucial to the success of your small business. Even more importantly is the type of market research that is done. This is because marketing efforts that are aimed at the wrong target market can be a waste of time and money. Ultimately this hinders a business's efforts to attract new customers. Market research can be used, in order to help prevent this and to evaluate current methods. Do not fall into the trap of many small business owners that assume marketing is to expensive or is not needed at this early stage of the business cycle.Continue reading "Things you should know about small business market research"
So you have a great idea, you are sure it will be a big success, and are ready to open your business. However, it is important to understand that making the decision to open a small business is only the first step. Savvy small business owners realize that making the decision to start a small business requires a lot of time, effort and planning. Most often the first step a would-be business owner takes, is to speak to their financial advisor about how much money they need to start their business. However, it is important to understand that there are several other factors you need to address when you are starting a small business. Here are things you need to start a small business-Continue reading "Things you need to start a small business"
Many would be small business owners, are left wondering if the current economic conditions are strong enough to start a business in. However, several studies have shown that a recession may be the best time to start a new business. There have been many now well-known businesses that were began during a recession. If you are willing to do some research, use careful planning and frugality, you might discover that now is the time for you to launch your dream. Here is what you need to know about starting a small business during a recession-Continue reading "Small Business and Recession"
When you are marketing for your small business, there are certain considerations that you should take into account. While there is a lot of different strategies that you can use, when it comes to marketing a product or service, small business marketing must be more concise and even more effective. Many small business owners assume that they must use methods like putting an ad in the paper, handing out flyers, or even making a television commercial. However, there are lots of different ways to market your product or service. Keep in mind that if your marketing efforts aren't getting the results that you had hoped for, there are some less common marketing tips that may be right for you. Taking a different angle at approaching how you market your product or service, may just be what you need to get your name out there, and even save yourself some money in the process. Here are some marketing tips for a small business-Continue reading "Marketing tips for a small business"
If you are ready to begin marketing your small business in a bigger way, then you must understand that it will take some time and planning, to develop an effective marketing strategy. The purpose of your marketing strategy must be to reach your potential target market, in the smartest way possible. The first step is to determine exactly who your target market is, and then formulate your marketing plan. It is important to understand that every small business must have a sold marketing strategy, to follow in order to generate the interest they need from their target audience. Here are some marketing strategies for your small business.Continue reading "Marketing strategies for your small business"
Email is one of the most effective tools, when it comes to staying in touch with your customers. You can use email in a variety of ways, to let your customers know what you are working on, new offers and even to thank them. Since the foundation of building a customer base is by establishing a relationship with them, using email can help you do just that. The bottom line is that if you aren't emailing your customers anymore, you are missing out on some great opportunities. Best of all email is free, easy to do and you can have a staff member fill in, for you at anytime. Here is what you need to know about how to use email to build your small business-Continue reading "How to use email to build your small business"
In today's volatile economy many people are trying to give themselves some security, by starting their own business. However, it is crucial to determine, the right small business, for you. You should consider both profitability, and your own strengths when starting your own business. Here is what you need to know about how to start the right small business-
Managing your small business finances is just like anything else. You must have a plan as to what you want to accomplish. Many small business owners overlook the need to carefully have a plan on how to manage their finances. The bottom line is that failing to have a plan, in regards to any aspect of your business can be serious, failing to have a plan on how to manage your business finances, can literally bring about its downfall. In today's economy it has become crucial, for small businesses to have a tight hold over their finances. The finances problems of years past, that could just be ignored must now be dealt with immediately, to avoid serious ramifications. It is important to understand that your small business' finances are the underpinnings of your business's strength; as they go, so goes the business. There are several important steps you can take to manage your business finances. Here are a few of them-Continue reading "How to manage your small business finances"
One of the key components to making your small business work will be teamwork. A small business has a much better chance of success, if it operates with a strong foundation based on teamwork. This is because teamwork provides you with a chance to rely on your employees, and to harbor an environment of trust.Continue reading "How to make teamwork a part of your small business"
Once you have started your small business, you may think that you are through the worst of the challenges. The reality is that while it can be a big challenge to get your business up and running, once you establish your business (and you have a steady customer base), you are always subject to having challenges. Just running your small business on a day-to-day basis, can mean you will be faced with an assortment of challenges. You may be wondering how you can make sure your small business is going to last through the years. The good news is that despite the fact that there are no "sure things" in business, there are steps you can take that will help insure the long-term survival of your small business. Here is what you need to know about how to keep your small business up and running-
One of the most important things you will need when establishing your small business, it to create an image. This image will be a key to your success, in getting the message out about what your company can offer. The reality of the business world is that if people don't know about you or don't think much of you, then you won't do much business. It is important to understand that your business image is something that must be developed, and nurtured, for you to find the success that you are looking for. Here is all about creating a small business image:Continue reading "All about creating a small business image"
Small business owners, who are trying to define who they can sell their product or service to, will need to understand their market segment. Market segmentation is defined one of the steps that goes into defining and targeting, specific markets. It is the process of dividing a market into a distinct group of buyers and understanding, that each group will require different products or marketing mixes. The way to stay competitive in today's market is the ability of any business to find the subtle differences to give a business the marketing edge. Businesses that target specialty markets will promote its products and services, more effectively than a business that is only aiming at the "average" customer. This is especially true for a small business that may possess limited marketing resources.Continue reading "What is small business market segmentation?"
To gain the attention of prospective clients and customers, you need to focus on business networking. This will allow you to rely on other companies to help expand and grow your business. Quite often you can use your network to release word-of-mouth marketing campaigns and generate a high amount of "buzz" without needing to pay a lot of money on your marketing campaign.Continue reading "Using business networking to build relationships"
Every business owner, no matter the size of their company, is always looking for ways to improve. However, for small businesses, improvement can mean the difference between being competitive for the long haul, or quickly dying out. The reality is that no business is static and your business is either on an upward track, or on its way down. Making improvements to make your business better is a very conscious choice. Small business owners must understand that not only must they balance their time, but choose the right area of business, that will make the biggest impact. Here are some tips on how to improve your small business-Continue reading "Tips to Improve Your Small Business"
If you want your small business to remain healthy for many years, you need to focus on building customer relationships with them. Small businesses in particular need to focus on keeping their customers happy and keeping them for many years to come. This is because over 80% of your sales will come from your existing customers. So instead of wasting too much time and money searching for new customers, you need to set aside the money to keep your existing customers happy and returning for more. This article will guide you through the process of making strong customer relationships and keeping your customers satisfied for many years to come.
When you take a look at your small business, are you overwhelmed at what and how to manage it? The day to day details, of managing your small business can seem unimportant, however, keeping control of seemingly unimportant issues, can help set your small business on the path to success. Remember that if chaos has crept into your small business, it is probably busy spreading throughout your organization like a virus. Keep in mind that disorganization and confusion are irritating, but they can be deadly for your small business. You can take control of your small business, by applying some simple management principles. Here is what you need to know about small business management-Continue reading "Small business management"
Getting your customers to your website is one thing but how can you make simple leads turn into sales? Making leads turn into sales will rely heavily on your ability to build relationships with your customers. When your customers contact you do you work hard to make sure their needs are met? Do you always put your customers needs first? This article will guide you through the process of making leads turn into sales.Continue reading "Making leads turn into sales"
If you own a small business and have reached a point that you need to hire an employee (or maybe more then one), it can be both exciting and overwhelming. However, there are tips that make sure that you are hiring the right employee and expanding your small business in a profitable way-Continue reading "How to hire employees for your small business"
Today's difficult economy can put tremendous pressure on every business, yet it becomes even more intensified for small businesses. There are many different factors that can put your small business to the test. This can include: recession, economic downturn, dishonest partnership, or even industry shakeout. Surviving in hard times requires a steel determination and never-say-quit attitude, for small businesses. However, surviving goes far beyond simply having a winning attitude. Here is what you need to know about how to help your small business survive tough times-Continue reading "How to help your small business survive tough times"
The reality is that no business, regardless of size, is immune to a sales slump. This can be due to many factors that include but are not limited to: changing market conditions, sagging consumer confidence, unmotivated staff, and new competitive threats. These and many other factors can all quickly turn stellar sales performance, into a fast downward spiral. Small business owners and their sales teams are especially facing intense competition for accounts, eroding margins, and longer sales cycles. However, there are things that a savvy small business owner can do. Here is what you need to know about how to boost sales for your small business-Continue reading "How to boost sales for your small business"
With the recession and the economy taking a sour turn, many small businesses had to declare bankruptcy as they could no longer afford to stay in business. How can you ensure that your small business will continue to stay afloat in this complex economy? This article will discuss a few things you need to do that will help you rebound from declining sales.
Are you ready to take your small business to the next level? If you would like to grow your small business, you need to reach out to your customers through marketing, customer service, and several other things. Here are some simple steps you need to follow in order to grow your small business:Continue reading "Growing your small business with these simple steps"
When you started your small business did you put a lot of thought into the branding aspect of your small business? Branding is an important step in your marketing plan as you need to be aware that this is how people will come to recognize your business and this is how they will develop a reputation for your small business. When a person sees your company logo, products, and website will they have a good impression about the business or will they have a bad impression based on your small businesses reputation?Continue reading "Gaining customer loyalty with branding"
The financial position of your small business may have taken a large hit over the past few years due to the recession and the current state of the economy. If your customers aren't ordering as many products as you like and you are struggling to attract new customers that can generate more revenue for your business, there are some easy ways to find debt relief for your small business.Continue reading "Finding debt relief for your small business"
In order to keep your small business competitive, you need to analyze your business to make sure you are staying a step ahead of the competition. If you are just barley keeping up with them, your business will not be able to last too long. So what does it mean to analyze your business so you can continue to stay in business for many years to come? You must start with a few basic questions pertaining to your business:Continue reading "Analyzing your business"
A commercial real estate loan allows businesses to purchase land, buildings, or other property in order to gain business credit. Commercial real estate loans use the property being bought as collateral against the loan. Unlike the process for home mortgages though, approvals for commercial loans are based on the property you're interested in buying. You'll need a solid business plan in place and careful professional evaluation of the property to receive funding. Small business owners have a great opportunity to acquire a commercial real estate loan and build their business empire.
Small business owners have a lot of difficult choices to make in order to run their business successfully. The software you use will help you organize your business and will allow you to run your business in an orderly fashion. Software is essential for proper maintenance and control of your books. QuickBooks and PeachTree are two common software programs that are used for small businesses as they provide you with control over your books. These software programs also offer additional services like payroll and taxes. This way you don't have to pay to outsource these services to another company, which can benefit you tremendously as a small business owner. Here are some tips to help you choose the right small business software:
Are you the leader of your small business? This is a tremendous responsibility as you are in charge of inspiring your employees and motivating them to do better. Company leadership comes from the lead CEO, managers, and even the individual employees themselves. If you are able to develop a healthy working environment, you can easily develop a stronger working environment where your employees are inspired to lead one another. Here are the leadership qualities you need to have in order to become a successful leader for your company:
Starting a small business? There are several things you need to have prepared in advance before you head to the banks to try and secure financing for your new business. This article will guide you through some of the essentials you need to follow when you are starting your business.Continue reading "Startup tips for small businesses"
Are you ready to take your small business to the next level? How can you do this? The answer lies in smart marketing strategies. Every small business must have a sold marketing strategy to follow in order to generate the interest they need from their target audience. Here are some smart marketing strategies to help your small business.
The success of a small business depends on the business management style that is running it. Every business has its own management style and you must be able to work out a style that fits your needs and the business needs. There are several business management styles out there but there are 3 that are quite popular with most small business owners.Continue reading "Picking a business management style that's right for you"
When you are starting a small business, it can be a big challenge to get your business up and running. Once you establish your business and you have a steady customer base, you are always subject to having challenges. Keeping your small business alive can be an incredible challenge for you. How can you make sure your small business is going to last through the years? This article will explain how to face small business challenges head on and move forward from them.Continue reading "Keeping your small business alive"
Having the right amount of money at the right time is a key to making sure that you can get your business started. This is even more important when you are starting a small business in a down economy. Getting money is only part of the process but is an essential part of getting a successful small business up and running. Here are some tips on getting start up money for your business.
Starting your own business can change your life in many great ways. Being in control of the money that you make can lead to an enhanced lifestyle and an ability to do the things in life that you always wanted to. Not having to answer to anyone else and setting your own hours are two more popular reasons why people decide to go into business for themselves. While these motives are by no means wrong and the benefits are undeniably appealing, there are also other factors and traits that you must have in order to ensure that you run a business that is actually successful.Continue reading "Why start your own small business?"
Without customers you have no business! If you can find a group of people who will buy your product you are well on your way to being a business success, but building a customer base can definitely be a challenge. Additionally, you have to run your business in such a way that the customers that you do have keep coming back for more! Before you can hope to attract a large number of customers, you have to know who your customers are. Not knowing who your customer is and instead relying solely on your product to carry you through is a huge mistake. In business, the customers that you have or could potentially have are part of your target market. In order to advertise effectively, you need to keep close tabs in your target market and be sure that whatever you do, you are providing them with a product that solves a problem specific to them.
The great thing about small business ownership is that anyone who wants to can have the opportunity to be their own boss. Unfortunately, the catch is directly related to the duration that these businesses last. Only those who have certain skills and traits can take their business ideas and turn them into a long-standing success. Researchers have looked into what makes a good business person and have come up with a list of traits that most successful business owners have in common.
Having a small business website has become an essential part of doing business. A simple website can provide information and sales opportunities to customers all over the world. Because the cost of operating a website is so small in comparison to the benefits, having a website for your small business is really a no-brainer. The challenge comes in making your website the best that it can be and the most effective instrument possible. Here is a list of some of the most important things that your website should have or that you can add to make your site even better.Continue reading "Tips for improving your small business website"
You can't please everyone. Criticism is a natural consequence of being a business owner. Whether your critic is an unsatisfied customer or a competitor looking to discredit you, taking harsh words in stride is definitely a challenge. The unfortunate truth is that the bigger your business is and the more successful you become, the more people will try to bring you down. In many respects you put yourself out there to be criticized. Receiving that first letter of dissatisfaction or nasty phone call can upset even the most professional of small business owners. Although the temptation to take criticism personally is definitely an easy thing to do (after all you have poured a lot of yourself into your business) seasoned business owners know that it is better to put personal feelings aside and try your best to take criticism constructively.
Most small businesses start out in a similar way. You have a great idea, you work up a prototype, you have some success selling a fair number of products and then you decide to go bigger. Understanding how to sell your product is in some ways more difficult than coming up with or inventing the product itself. The first thing that you want to do on the journey of getting your product to market is to do research and learn how other people in your same situation did it. Learn from the mistakes and successes of others. The next thing that you want to do is get your priorities aligned. If you are going to get your product onto store shelves you need to make sure that you stay focused on that goal. Too many people become overly concerned with all the nuances of running a business that putting forth the effort to actually get the product to market becomes secondary. Remember, if people are not buying your product, you don't have a business. As you pursue the goal of getting your product to market, here are some helpful steps that should help you.Continue reading "How to get your product onto store shelves"
A small business will function smoothly if everyone is able to get on the same page and to pull together and work as a team. Since small businesses normally have around 15 employees or less, you will find that teamwork is a great way for everyone to motivate one another and to share in different experiences and challenges.Continue reading "Working as a team"
Making the decision to start your own small business requires a lot of time, effort and planning. While you may have spoken to your financial advisor about how much money you need to start your business, there are several other questions you need to address when you are starting a small business.
As Facebook, MySpace, and Twitter continue to draw attention, many small businesses are finding that these social media sites are a wonderful way to connect with their customers. While on social media sites, you can gain a wealth of information about your customers that will provide you with free market research. Several major companies have gravitated to social media sites as well and they often use them to announce sales and the launch of new products. Since you are operating a small business, your social media page will allow you to be a little more intimate with your customers. Meaning, you have the opportunity to carry on conversations with some of your customers and lead up some great discussion groups. Let your customers see your face so they can associate you with the business and it will start to form a stronger relationship with the company.Continue reading "Using social media to your advantage"
Running a small business is going to be difficult but as it continues to grow and you start to gain more employees, you may reach a point where you need to involve best practice to help improve the small business. Choosing the right best practice program will increase employee productivity, decrease errors and product defects, and improve the overall business structure of your small business.Continue reading "Understanding best practice"
The day-to-day tasks of running a small business can become stressful and if you aren't equipped to deal with the different problems, you will have a hard time running your small business. Here are some of the problems you will run into and the things you can do to overcome them:Continue reading "Tips for small business owners"
Being your own boss may look attractive in theory, but you will quickly find it's not all fun and games all the time. It will require a lot of time and energy and you won't make millions of dollars overnight, in fact you may never get to that point. Hard work will pay off in the long run and you will be able to create a long-lasting company that you can pass on to future generations. To help you with you new small business, we have put together some basic guidelines for you.Continue reading "The basic requirements of running your own business"
The economy has taken its toll on small business owners and if you'd made it through so far, you aren't doing too bad. Unfortunately small businesses often have everything going against them and only about 2/3rds will survive the first 2 years and after that only half of those businesses will survive 2 more years. So with all of the odds going against you, plus the hardships in the economy, how can you find a way to keep your small business going strong? This article will explore a few things you can do to keep yourself in business.Continue reading "Surviving in difficult times"
With all of the different marketing opportunities available to small businesses, it's pretty easy to grow your small business. The internet is perhaps the biggest marketing tool as it comes with so many powerful and useful tools. From the creation of your own web site where customers can browse, learn, and shop to the marketing power of social media sites, you have so much power at your fingertips. Learning how to use the internet in your marketing strategy will allow you to stay a step above your competition and successfully grow your small business.Continue reading "Staying a step above the rest"
Your employees are one of the biggest components to your business. If you aren't hiring the right employees, it will be difficult for you to build up strong relationships with your customers. Hiring the right employees comes down to how well you are able to recruit people and interview the right ones.Continue reading "Smart recruiting"
Meeting your sales goals can be a bit of a challenge. If you have been struggling to meet your sales goals, we have some easy tips you can try.
Tip # 1 - Search for new customers
If you give up your search for new customers, you won't be able to last too long.
Making your monthly sales quota can be challenging, especially during a time when no one is buying. When you are trapped in the middle of a sales crisis during a time when your customers want to save instead of spend, all hope is not lost and there are a few simple tricks you can do.Continue reading "Selling when no one is buying"
If you have not received formal training or on the job training in marketing, it could be one of your biggest challenges as a small business owner. Marketing involves a number of different things from learning how to use the internet to your advantage to networking with the right groups of people. Anyone that needs help with marketing should follow these simple tips:
If you would like to manage differently and look for new ways to inspire your employees to work hard and become more productive, it will begin with your ability to communicate. You may hear it all the time but communication really is they key to a successful working environment. Look back over some of your previous jobs and you will be able to dismantle the jobs that had poor communication from the ones that had great communication and you felt needed by your employer. To help you learn how to manage differently, here are some tips:
Becoming a leader is one of the most important qualities of running a successful small business. Simply put, leadership means setting an example that others have the desire to follow and believe in. Since you own the small business, you are already a leader in your own right even if you don't think you are. Working hard to develop a good business plan and obtaining the financing for the business is leadership in one form. The other involves getting your employees to rally behind you and support you along this journey.
When small changes happen in large organizations, a lot of people don't even recognize them and things just happen according to plan. With a small business, a small change can cause big problems for management and it can be difficult to help your employees stay focused on the goals of the business. Here are some simple steps you can take to help your employees handle change:Continue reading "How to handle change"
One of the best ways to market your small business is through article writing and blogging. When you write articles that are based on topics you discuss with your customers, you are establishing your brand with your customers and this will help you stand out from your competition. Branding is difficult to do, but article marketing makes it pretty easy as you only need to write on topics that will benefit your customers and pretty soon people will start to look upon you as the company `in the know.'
When the small business environment gets rough, the one thing employees need to be able to count on is their managers. A good manger can lead their employees through any challenge and come out on top and with the trust and respect of their staff members. So what qualities does a good leader possess? Here are a few you need to work on:
Public relations helps your company spread the word about who you are. PR allows you to book interviews with the press, host large parties and events, and it can lead to a big sales increase if you do it correctly. Some people will hire a PR firm, which is a great way to handle PR but small businesses don't have the extra money to pay a PR firm to do everything for them. Instead you can do your own PR for free, even if you haven't received formal training, we have a few tips you can use that will help:Continue reading "Great PR for free"
Small businesses need to find a way to get noticed if they would like to remain in business for several years. Some business owners are able to make their clients feel special that it helps to develop long-lasting relationships. Others impress their competition that it inspires them to work together. No matter how you want to say it, getting noticed is going to do more for your small business than anything else. Are you ready to get noticed? Good, here are some simple ways to do it.
Depending upon the size of your small business idea, you most likely won't need millions of dollars to get started. Even if you don't need a large amount of funding, it can be difficult to find the money especially when the economy is bad. During a bad economy, lenders will tighten their lending rules and unless you have a high credit rating, a solid business plan, and enough invested into the business, they will not take a risk by lending you the money.Continue reading "Finding money to launch your business in a bad economy"
In order to keep your customers happy, you need to look for new ways to change your company's image or products once and awhile. You need to keep up with new changes in order to stay with the times or you risk looking outdated. Have you ever been to a mom-and-pop organization that looks like its still 20 years behind the times? While it may not be a huge deal to you because you like their food, it can be a completely different thing if you are dealing with a dentist or even retailer.Continue reading "Changing to keep up with the demands"
Several hats are worn by a small business owner, one of which is learning how to be a consulting expert. Hiring a consulting firm to do this hard work for you is a good idea, but it isn't always feasible with budget restrictions. Before you decide to add consulting to your business, consider the following:
The cost of the physical location for your small business's daily operations can be one of the most significant costs that you are faced with paying as the business owner. If working out of your home is not a viable option for you and buying your own business location is out of the question, renting is a good solution. Here are some helpful tips on choosing the right rental option for your budget and needs.
Few things are more important than protecting yourself and your family. For a business owner, it is absolutely essential to protect your business and the people that work with and for you. Insurance is one of the ways that you can protect yourself from many different problems that can arise in life.
Businesses of all shapes and sizes all over the world are struggling right now but that doesn't mean that your business has to be one of them. If your small business is struggling right now there are still things that you can do to pull out of the recession or any problems that you are having. Here are some steps that you can follow to make sure you are able to help your struggling business.Continue reading "How to help your struggling small business"
Making a smaller impact on the earth has become a priority for our nation. Many businesses have embraced the idea and have taken steps to be a little greener. While it may seem that only larger companies have taken the steps to be greener, there are many things small businesses can do to lessen their impact on the environment. Here are a few options for small businesses looking to go green.Continue reading "Green options for a small business"
Starting a business is never an easy thing to do but can be that much more challenging during recessionary times. But there are some people that are willing and able to start their own business no matter what else is happening around them and they somehow manage to find success. If you are wondering whether or not you would be able to make this happen for yourself here are some suggestions and tips to help you out.Continue reading "Do you have what it takes to start a small business during a recession?"
Insurance is a big deal right now to a lot of people. The government is in hot discussion about what can be done to help those that don't have it and how to make users of insurance more responsible with it. But insurance, especially health insurance, is very important right now to employers and their employees. The whole issue can be very challenging in a business of any size but really seems to be pesky for small businesses. Here are some suggestions to help you make good decisions about health insurance for your small business.
Small businesses are not a rarity. It seems like just about everyone has tried their hand at being their own boss at one time or another, but very few people actually succeed. More than half of all new businesses fail within the first few years of operation. With odds like that, it can be very intimidating to take the leap and become self-employed. Fortunately, there are some things that you can do to improve your odds of a successful small business owner.
Small businesses take a lot of work to be successful. But when a small business is managed well its day to day operations can run smoothly and the small business can not only be successful it can also grow. This article discusses several terrific tips for managing a small business.
Writing a good business plan can be difficult. This article offers five great tips to help a future small business owner write a good business plan.
A great tip for writing a good business plan is for the business owner to begin by knowing what they want their small business to achieve. Before a business plan is ever written down, most people think about it in their head. This is a good way to start. Some people refer to this part as a vision for their small business.
Once a small business is up and running it is essential that the finances are managed well so that the business can continue to run and hopefully will be a successful small business. This article discusses four tips to managing small business finances.
Writing a business plan is an essential step to getting funding for a small business as well as running a successful small business. This article discusses what a business plan is, its importance, what a small business owner should include in a good business plan, and how to write a good business plan.
Deciding to start a small business is only the first step a future small business owner needs to take in order to become a small business owner. Another important step on this path is for them to choose the right small business for them to own. This article discusses how to choose the right small business for you.
There are many different financing options available to small business owners. And all of these small business financing options have both positive and negative aspects to them. This article discusses more about four of these small business financing options.Continue reading "Financing options for small businesses"
When it comes to determining your business structure, there are several things you need to consider. One of the most important things you need to consider is your liability to the business. A business owner should protect themselves from any liability associated with the business this includes things like tax implications, capital needs, and what happens to the business in the event of your death. Here is a list of the to 5 business structures that are commonly used by small business owners:Continue reading "Selecting your small business structure"
At some point during the business start-up process, a you will need to decide how to structure the business. There can be many ways to do this, but it is generally done in the form of a corporation or an LLC (limited liability company).
Before you can decide which is right for you and your business, take a look at some of the pros and cons of each:Continue reading "Corporation or LCC-which is best for me?"
When the time comes to grow your small business to possibly multiple locations; it's important to spend some time prepping your employees for the big change. There are several things you must consider when you decide to grow your business.
First, how do you plan on staffing the location? Are you going to send some of your existing employees there to run it or do you plan to move your offices there to run it?
Second, do you have enough money to expand your business? Expanding your business doesn't just mean you need to pay for more salaries, rent, and equipment. It also means you will need to increase your production costs, inventory expenses, etc. To prepare your employees and your business for growth, review these tips:Continue reading "Preparing your employees for business growth"
Growing your small business is challenging for anyone; even the entrepreneur that has done it before. To help your small business grow, consider using some of the following tips:
Tip # 1 - Market to your existing customers
It's important to focus on your existing customers and urge them to buy more. Work on building relationships with them that show them you genuinely appreciate their business. When existing customers are happy and satisfied, they are likely to tell their friends about your business. Referral marketing is a great way to gain new customers that are solid and actually want to purchase your products.
Look for ways to gain the attention of your existing customers, perhaps you can send out thank-you mailers that let them know just how much you appreciate their business. Another great way to get their attention is to offer discounts and sales to them. Your goal should be to let them know that they mean something to your business and you need their support.
Finding the right location for your business is one of the most important parts of opening your small business. Picking a location for size may not be the best if you rely heavily on visibility, like movie theaters and restaurants do. However, picking a business in a high traffic area may not be the best idea because customers may not be able to even get into the parking lot, causing some buildings to go through tenants like crazy.
Every business has a different target audience. While Victoria's Secret can survive in a shopping mall, a copy and print center probably won't last too long. Knowing your target audience can help you pick the right location so you can stay in business. Your target audience will also help you understand some of the other things you may need to reach them like extra parking, handicapped ramps, and access to other businesses that fit their shopping needs.
This is why you often see grocery stores teamed up with banks, post offices, and convenience stores like K-mart. Customers are able to do one-stop shopping and get everything they need without driving their car around to 10 different stores. For example, a natural health food store often survives well in areas that are around doctors offices, healing centers, massage therapy centers, and other places that cater to health-related needs.
Companies often pay thousands of dollars for researchers and advertising agencies to come up with a good name and logo for their business. Of course a good logo and business name is one of the best ways to get your business off and running on the right foot. Naming your business is important as this is how customers will remember your company. Picking the right name will get your company off to the right start. With that being said, here are some tips that can help you select a good business name and logo:
Tip # 1 - Image
The company name and logo will represent the image you want your company to have. Think of some of the best company names out there. Pizza Hut for example is a great name for their food-chain since they began as a pizza company that often served their pizzas indoors. As the delivery business began to catch on, the indoor eatery of Pizza Hut switched to fast delivery services while maintaining a certain level of quality. Their logo has adapted over the years to fit the modern image of the company. It went from classic to a modern logo that focuses more on the speed of their delivery versus the dining in. Take the sports wear manufacturing company Adidas. It was named after its inventor, Adolf Dassler. Adi is actually short for Adolf, causing the first part of the name to be born and "das" being short for Dassler. Many small businesses are actually started from the name of the companies creator, Orville Redenbaucher, Dell, Abercrombie & Fitch, Bell Telephone Company, Coors, Ferrari, Forbes, Miramax, and Sears to name a few.Continue reading "Choosing a good business name and logo"
Continue reading "Using a 504 program for small business expansion"
What is a 504 program?
Also referred to as a CDC/504 program, this is a type of long-term loan for growing small businesses. The CDC is a Certified Development Company, a corporation that is designed to help improve economics within a community. Together with the SBA and other lenders, they work to find financing for small businesses.
Continue reading "Networking for Small Business"
Networking is an essential element of any successful small business. Because a small business is limited by finances and size it is unable to handle every aspect of their business. The best small businesses must establish relationships with other businesses and business people in the area in order to be successful. There are many methods for creating these relationships. Here are a handful of techniques for networking to build business relationships.
Customers are the lifeblood of a business and are the only way that cash can keep flowing through the system. If you run out of customers or frustrate them, you will quickly find that the doors of your business will close. It is very important to retain good customers and also look for new ones. Here are some steps to follow to find new customers.
Finding new customers is essential to the growth of any business and is one of the most important growth strategies that can be used for small business owners.Continue reading "How to find new customers"
Twitter, which is a social networking website, is a great tool that you can use to grow your business. Many younger consumers use social networking websites on a daily basis, so to reach the group one of the best things that you can do is use Twitter for your business. The problem with using Twitter as a marketing tool is that many small business owners do not know how to properly use it as a marketing tool, so they are failing in their goal of trying to grow their business.
Here are some things that you can do to help grow your business by using Twitter.Continue reading "Ways to grow your business using Twitter"
Most small business owners have a goal of growing their small business into something larger. However, just because they have the goal of growing their small business there is no guarantee that they know what to do to make their small business grow. One of the most important things that you are going to need to do before you can even begin to grow your small business is to ensure that it is ready to grow. This means that you are going to need to make sure that you the room to grow, the money to grow your business, and the means of keeping up with your growing business. If you don't have all of these things then your business is not ready to grow, so you will have to wait awhile longer before making any changes.
Here are some changes that you can make to help your small business grow.Continue reading "Positive changes to grow your small business"
One of the best things that you can do to help your small business grow is to expand your customer base. However, you don't simply want to take any customers, you want a specific kind of customer. When growing your small business you want to get loyal customers. The best way to go about getting loyal customers is to show your current customers how loyal you are to them through your actions. By creating loyal customers, you are going to be able to grow your business, which will guarantee an income for your small business.
Here are the steps you will need to take to get loyal customers for your small business.Continue reading "Growing your business by getting loyal customers"
If you are just getting started in starting your small business one of the best places to go for help is the Small Business Association, or the SBA for short. The SBA is designed to provide you with support through numerous resources and experts on every aspect of owning and running a small business. Most states have their own SBA chapter, but if your state does not have one you can use the national SBA to help you get started in opening a small business. No matter if you use the state's SBA or the national SBA you are going to have to pay a small membership, which many small business owners finds pays for it because of how much help the SBA provides small business owners with.
Here are the steps you will need to follow to get help from the SBA to start your own small business.Continue reading "Getting the Small Business Association to help you start your home business"
Small businesses are learning that social networking sites are one of the best places to find new customers and build relationships with customers. Social networking allows individuals to get together online and share interests, hobbies, ideas, and other information. Several people develop friendships and business relationships online using the social networking sites.
Anyone can become a member of a social networking site, which is why so many businesses have been able to establish user profiles on social networking sites. MySpace and Facebook are two of the most-popular social networking sites; LinkedIn and Twitter are popular with businesses. A company can create a profile page that includes information about the company and send press releases to a targeted audience. Individuals are able to add companies as their "friends" and they will receive information from the company about new products, services, and other updates.Continue reading "Social networking tips for small businesses"
Continue reading "How good leadership impacts company growth"
The business world is full of leadership and decision making strategies. Being a good leader involves gaining the trust and respect of your coworkers and employees. People need to trust you in order for them to listen to you. Being a good leader is an important part of company growth. Employees often leave their employers because they are unsatisfied with their managers. If you want to keep the good employees that can help your company grow, you need to start with your leadership skills. Here are some things you can do to work on your leadership skills:
Continue reading "Expanding your client base"
Every successful company knows that a good marketing plan starts with expanding your client base. Everyone wants to have a broad customer base that will keep them in business for a long time. How can you expand your customer base? Here are some easy tips to follow:
Continue reading "Easy ways to make your business more productive"
Every company is looking for ways to improve their business. Improving your business is always a great idea, but making that idea become a reality seems like a painstaking task for many people. With just a few simple changes, you can significantly improve your business not only financially but as a whole. You can make the people who work for you, want to work for you. In turn, the happy employees will see your vision of the future and do everything in their power to help you achieve it. Here are some easy ways to make your business more productive:
Continue reading "Building your business and profits"
Your business is just opening its doors. You are so excited. But you want to make sure that your business doesn't fail. You want to grow and build up your profits. Here are a few suggestions to help make your business a success.
Do you have a great idea and just know it is going to work? Unfortunately the majority of small businesses fail quickly. This comes from a variety of reasons, but mostly falls under the umbrella of being ill-prepared and making poor choices. More times than not poor choices come from not knowing.
The best way to protect yourself is to make sure you take the time to do your research. Network with individuals and find out what is going on. Things you considered yourself an expert on several years ago may have all changed from what you knew. Let's take a look at some of the most common mistakes start up businesses have in hopes to help educate you on what NOT to do.Continue reading "Avoiding mistakes by making good decisions"
Continue reading "How do I develop my small business?"
Small business owners who are looking to grow their businesses during a time of economic decline want marketing methods that are cost effective, yield excellent results and can be utilized easily. While it may seem in the chaotic markets of today that this is impossible there are methods for growing your business that will help you create stability and profitability. For savvy small business owners who are creative and willing to think out of the box they can adjust their strategies so that their business (no matter the size) can continue to grow and thrive no matter what the economic environment. Here are some unique tactics to consider if you are a small business owner who is asking-How do I develop my small business?
Continue reading "How do I increase my business knowledge for my small business?"
One of the biggest challenges that small business owners face in the day to day running of their business is how to increase their business knowledge. This is mainly due to the fact that the actual running of the business seems to take up any and all available time. Yet in order for businesses to grow and thrive it has become vital in the fast paced markets of today that small business owners continue to increase their business knowledge or risk being left behind or worse even become extinct in the marketplace. While the thought of trying to do anything else can be overwhelming with some careful planning of both time and money the savvy business owner can increase his or her business knowledge and use it grow their small business. Here are some ideas on how to increase your business knowledge for your small business-
Continue reading "Learning to make wise small business decisions"
There have been many books written about avoiding mistakes and making the best decisions possible for your small business. Although these books contain very valuable information that can certainly be helpful, chances are that no one has written a book just for you about your small business and what sorts of wise decisions that you should be making on a daily basis. Learning how to make wise small business decisions is a very personal quest that must be undertaken by each individual small business owner. However, this process is not entirely without direction. There are a few very basic suggestions for small business owners that can help you to avoid as many poor small business decisions as possible. Here is just such a brief list of suggestions:
You have been thinking about starting up your dream business with your retirement funds. Nevertheless, the questions remain.
What options are available to obtain funding to start a small business? Is borrowing from retirement funds a good place for funding to start a business? How much will be needed to be borrowed? Are there penalties?
Borrowing from your retirement savings may not be a bad idea. Most plans allow you to borrow up to 50% of the value of your account. Generally, this is penalty free, as long as you pay the loan back in a timely manner.
How to use Kinko's or a copy center to build your business
Teaming up with a copy center to build your business makes a lot of sense. There are a lot of expenses to consider when you are trying to start up your business. You should not have to worry about spending your money to buy your own customized document equipment, when you can just use someone Else's.
Maybe the most well-known of all the copy centers is Kinko's (or FedEx Kinko's as they now go by). From their website you can learn that they serve 435 of the "Fortune 500" companies. They work with some of the largest businesses world wide. Also, they have at least 1,200 locations. All of these locations are what they call "digitally connected" so you can use their services no matter where you are. Kinko's also has a worldwide staff of over 20,000 people.
Whether you are looking for a single web or database server to a comprehensive e-Commerce or collaboration cluster of multiple servers with load balancing and fail over, there are many options available to help you buy dedicated server hosting for your business.
Why might you want a dedicated server?
Because you do not want to share your server with anyone else, dedicated servers offer superior performance and flexibility over shared hosting. You'll get the full benefit of the processing power of the machine, no limitation cap on the amount of bandwidth you can use, and complete control over your web site set-up. You will also have the space and the tools to host multiple sites on one server, and can even sell web space on to customers of your own
Will you need a dedicated server?
First, you need to determine if it is practical for you to have a dedicated web server, instead of buying web hosting. Your daily use of the Internet can help with determining this. Do you have more than 3000 users daily? Likely, at that point you would be justified in the purchase of dedicated server hosting.Continue reading "Buying dedicated server hosting for your business."
When a person decides to start their own business, there is a ton of work to do. They have an endless list of things that go through their mind and an endless list of things they have to do. They usually have only themselves or a couple other people helping them and so they have to make sure that everything they do is worth their time and what they need to be doing.
In order to help the small business owners, there are small business development centers. They are located everywhere, throughout the country, and there are tons online. They help you decide the best ways to do things, provide very valuable resources and are very helpful in making sure you don't waste your time. Some of the services are free, but there are websites or centers where you have to pay in order to get information or help.Continue reading "Small business development center"
If you have a business or a business idea, you'll probably find that one of the toughest parts of starting up is getting other to invest in your business. Businesses are expensive and require a number of things, including equipment, licensing, staff, products, and a wide range of other expenses you may not have anticipated. And with business loans and grants difficult to obtain, it can be a challenge finding people to invest in your business.
However, don't give up just yet. There are sure to be plenty or people with the means and the desire to help your business grow. The following are just a few ways you can get people to invest in your business.
Getting money for a small business can be very difficult. You have to make sure that you are finding the best options for your business because having a bad start will only make it harder on you. Luckily, there are tons of options out there. Let's look at some of them.
First, there are tons of loans that you can get. You will have to present a business plan and a specific and viable way to pay the money back. Paying back a business loan isn't something that is easy. You usually pay it back very slowly over several years. Sometimes you don't even start paying it off for a few years. This is the main way that businesses get funded.Continue reading "Getting money for a small business"
The culture of your company has a huge impact not only on the way it is run, but on the way your employees behave and interact as well.
What is company culture?
Your company or corporate culture can be defined as the behavior, thinking, and attitudes of those in the company. Company culture can be everything from the dress code to the standards you hold as a company. Some companies have a very structured, rigid culture, while others have a more energized, laid-back one.
The synergy circle is one way to run a business and create more business at near perfect levels. The synergy circle, what it is and how to apply it to small business is discussed further here.
Synergy by definition is the interaction of two or more agents or forces that when combined the effect is greater than the sum of their individual effects. In business a synergy circle is the cooperative interaction among groups that will create an enhanced combined effect. The idea of a synergy circle is that the value and performance of two companies combined will be greater than the sum of the separate individual parts. For example, if one company has a great product but lousy distribution while another company has a great distribution system but poor product they can create a synergy circle with a merger.Continue reading "The synergy circle, what is it, how to apply it to small business"
Small businesses have a hard time in this world. They have little capital and they are severely affected by small changes in the economy. They can literally loose everything overnight. Many of them have limited reputations or experience, meaning that it can be difficult to get investors and for them to grow. They also rarely can bring in help from outside areas, so they have to rely on whatever they can get from the surrounding area. All of these problems and many more confront the small business owner. So how can you improve your small business? Obviously there is advertising and word of mouth.
These are great methods, but you need to have a particular way of representing your business or your advertising might not do anything. If you think about it, the best advertisements you see are not annoying. With so many bad commercials out there, people just hate seeing a bad one. They are bored by bad advertising and simply don't pay attention to it. The best advertisements are the ones that don't really seem to be advertisements. They contains some sort of entertaining slogan or story. They are more about life than they are about a particular product.Continue reading "How to come up with a great small business slogan"
Keeping a small business going can be extremely hard. Many businesses fail in the first year of operation and others die soon thereafter. It is difficult to keep going when you have little capital and you have no reputation. How can you possibly attract investors to a venture that has no history and little behind it? There is no safety net. Many people who run small businesses feel constant stress because they never know when something is going to come along and take their small business from them. A competitor could ruing everything.
A small shift in the economy might destroy a business overnight. Given these obvious difficulties, how can you help your small business grow? One of the best answers to this question is promotion. Obviously you cannot attract investors unless the business has some success, but you won't get any success unless you really promote the business to customers. Many people are unaware of all the ways to promote their businesses. They think it consists of just running an ad in the local paper. You need to know that there are lots of ways to promote a small business. Getting your business name out there in as many ways as possible will lead to better promotion and better business. When business starts to boom you can attract investors and potentially expand. So what are the best methods for promoting your small business?Continue reading "How to promote your small business"
Continue reading "Title: How to make your small business environmentally friendly"
In a chaotic and crazy world, how do you run a small business? It is so difficult to keep a small business going for a number of reasons. The economy is tempermental and could destroy your business overnight. Furthermore, you know that you have little capital and that it could be difficult to find good investors. With little growth and not much history it could be very difficult to find anyone who would want to invest in your small business. Because of these difficulties you know that you need to cut costs and be very careful about how you use money. However, you also know that you need to help our business develop a good image. What are some of the things that people care about most these days? One answer is that we care about the environment and environmental problems. We like to think of ourselves as helping the environment. A person that does so is seen as foreward thinking and caring. Businesses that care about the environment are also seen as creative and caring. So how can you make your business environmentally friendly? Won't it be too expensive for a small business that has very little extra money? It can be expensive if you make major changes, but not all environmentally friendly changes require a complete overhall of a business.
Your company most likely has a brand image either as a symbol or name that is used to identify your company. The branding of a product is very important and can add significant value when it is well recognized or has positive thoughts in the minds of consumers. This concept of brand recognition is also referred to as brand equity. Since you are reading this it is probably safe to assume that you are looking for ways to increase your brand equity.
How to increase your brand equity will have you looking at your brand image a little harder and maybe creating a whole new brand. You will need to look at different and perhaps unused ways to get your brand out in the open to the consumers. You will also need to see if your brand has a positive or negative brand equity associated with it.Continue reading "How to increase your brand equity"
Everyone wants to have millions and many small business owners have found ways to make millions. If you have a few minutes, you can learn practical ways to make millions with your small business.
Many solo entrepreneurs have found success with home-based business. In fact, home-based businesses now comprise almost half of the estimated 26 millions small businesses nationwide. If you are a small business in the service industry, you are in luck. Currently there is a growing need for businesses that provide specialized support services to other small businesses. Solo entrepreneurs are making millions helping small businesses with their tech-support, human resources, and accounting. If your small business can outsource help like this, you will be on the fast track to making millions.
Having a good customer database will allow your business to grow or maintain its current level. Your customer database will be the best tool you have during hard times and the best tool you have when you need to maximize your profits. Typically a good customer database includes as much information as possible about your customers.
Your company should be collecting information on your customers. You need to know who is buying your products and why. The overall goal of your database will be to maximize your customer value and maintain retention and repeat sales. Your customer database will help you discover new ways to market and find ways to increase customer satisfaction.
One of the most important aspects of running a successful business is successfully and properly developing your brands. Brands are what really bring customers to you and will get you customer loyalty and just plain business; however, many small business owners do not know what the best way is in order to develop their brands. Here are some of the most important do's and don't's of brand development; following these basic rules will help you improve your brand development and your ability to successfully market your brands.
Top 5 brand development don'ts
1. Not thinking analytically about brand development
Far too often, the majority of small business owners only think about brand development as getting a really great slogan that will bring everybody into their small business. However, your brand needs you to always be looking at it and analyzing it. You also need to follow through on your brand marketing-if you are marketing your brand as having the highest quality product, then you should have the best quality product.
Depending on what type of small business you have will depend on what type of revenue you have coming in. No matter what type of revenue you have coming in you will want to make sure that you have some type of spending process so that you know how much is coming in and what exactly is going out. You will want to make sure that you have some type of budget so that you don't over spend and end up spending more money then your small business is making. One way to do this is to tailor a budget for your small business. Here are some tips on tailoring a budget for your small business that might help you.
The first tip is to have a spreadsheet. One the spreadsheet you will want to make sure that you list certain bills that you have to pay each month such as rent, utilities, and other expenses that you pay each month you run your company. You will also want to make sure that you put in your income that you make each month. Then at the bottom have a running total so that you can see if you are under spending or over spending each month. This will also help you to get a better idea of when your busy times are in your business and when they are slow. Then you will be able to know when you need to cut back on your spending.
There are so many different ways that you can go about improving your small business. If you are in need of improvement but you think you have done everything possible there is to do. You might want to reconsider things. Another thing you can do is to set regulations and policies to improve your small business. If you don't see how this will help your small business improve here is some information on setting regulations and policies to improve your small business that might be able to help you get a better idea.
The first thing is to make sure that you know what types of regulations are in effect right now. Once you have figured this out figure out how you can change them or add to them. For example if you certain regulations about when your employees can take off make sure that these regulations are being followed. The reason for this is because if one employee is taking off all the time which in return is making it so another employee always has to cover for them you might have a unhappy employee. Making sure that your employees are happy is one of the biggest ways to improve your small business. The reason for this is because if you have an unhappy employee your customers are probably going to be able to sense this and not like the mood that is being put off.Continue reading "Setting regulations and policies to improve your small business"
If you are looking for different ways to make your small business more of a success there a variety of ways you can go about doing it. One way that you might have more success as is making your small business an e-business. If you have heard about e-businesses but do not know what it consists of or how you can go about making your small business one. Here are some tips on making your small business an e-business.
The first tip is to know exactly what an e-business is. It is when you take your business online. The reason why a lot of small businesses go this way is because it saves them a lot of money. The way it saves you money is because it can be ran from your own home or a smaller space then what you would need to run a normal store. So you will not have the cost of having to pay for rent to lease a space and all of the other expenses that come with leasing a space such as your utilities and other things.Continue reading "Making your small business an e-business"
There are so many different ways that small businesses go about improving their businesses. Depending on the type of small business you are will depend on what type of things you will want to go about doing to improve your small business. One thing that can help improve your small business is using trademarks and brands. Here is some information to give you a better idea on how trademarks and brands can improve your small business.
The first thing is that it is hard to get your name out in the public when you are a small business. But if your small business sells brands or has trademarks that people are familiar with they will be more willing to buy from you. The reason for this is because they know the brands and trademarks and know how they are made so they have confidence in the products. Where as if you have a small business that is selling brands people have never heard of they might be a little bit nervous to buy from you.
Continue reading "How to make your small business assets more liquid"
There are a lot of different ways that people go about improving their small businesses. Depending on what type of small business you are and what type of products you sell will help determine what type of things you do to improve your business. One thing that can improve small businesses is making your assets more liquid. The first thing is to know exactly what it means to make your small business assets more liquid. This means that if need be that you can take what assets you have in your company and make them into money. There might come a time when your small business is in financial difficulty and you need more money. Because of this you want to make sure that not all of your assets are tied up to the point they cannot become liquid. Here are some tips on how to make your small business assets more liquid.
Changing your address for some reason or another is the hardest part about changing locations. Forwarding business mail when you change locations requires three things:
- Picking up a change-of-address form from the Post office
- Getting temporary forwarding service
- Contacting everyone you know and that uses your service or product
There are a number of locations where you can go in order to take advantage of various counseling and assistance services that are geared specifically for small businesses.
Generally speaking, there are three different types of organizations that offer counseling and assistance to small businesses: commercial services, non-profit organizations, and governmental organizations. All three types of organizations can be very helpful for small business owners; be aware that the majority of non-profit organizations and especially governmental organizations offer their counseling and assistance services for free.
One of the primary sources for business counseling and assistance that is located on the Internet is the Small Business Assistance Center at www.sbacnetwork.org. At this website, you can find a number of different articles and links to different resources that are available to help small business owners. The Small Business Assistance Center is a great place to begin your search for counseling and assistance services for small businesses, particularly if you are looking for resources that are available and that are located online.
There are numerous places where a small business owner can find contract opportunities for his or her small business. One of the best places for small business owners to look for contract opportunities is with the government, on both a state and especially on a federal level.
The federal government offers numerous contract opportunities that are specifically geared towards helping out small businesses. Small businesses are the only businesses that are eligible for these contract opportunities. One of the best places for any small business owner to begin his or her search for contract opportunities with the federal government is with the Small Business Administration, particularly on the Small Business Administration's website, which is www.sba.gov.
The Small Business Administration lists all of the different contract opportunities that are available for small businesses through the federal government. In addition to providing lists of contract opportunities through the federal government, the Small Business Administration also provides the contact information for all applicable government agencies and regional offices. This resource means that you don't have to go searching for the contact information for various agencies; instead, all of the information that you need is located in one place.Continue reading "Where to find contracts for small business"
Many small business owners debate over when the best time to get a small business credit card is. In reality, this can be a tough question. Credit cards can be very dangerous for any business, whether established or brand new. Credit cards generally charge high interest on late payments which could burry a new company in insurmountable debt. Companies should take extreme caution when starting a business with just credit; however, companies that do not plan on using a credit card instead of a bank loan or other form of start-up capital may consider getting a small business credit card right away.
Shows Business Stability and Confidence
Small business owners that get a credit card specific to their business show that they are serious about their business. The IRS is more convinced by companies that have a designated credit card than they are by small business owners that use a personal card for their business expenses. The IRS is less likely to be suspicious of a business owner's designation of purchases when all of the business purchases are on one card.Continue reading "When to consider getting a small business credit card"
There are numerous benefits to using online training for your small business. However, not enough businesses are taking advantage of the wide range of resources and training opportunities that are available through online training resources and programs.
Businesses across the world have embraced online technology as a superb way to reach customers and to improve both sales and marketing. E-commerce has become one of the most important components of any successful business' approach to marketing and to product and service distribution and awareness. However, few businesses have taken the natural leap to online training, a resource which makes use of technology similar to that used by e-commerce. Are there any benefits to online training? How can you bring those benefits into your business?Continue reading "Online training for small businesses"
Many small businesses rely on other businesses for supplies or services in order to operate. At first, reliance on these other companies is a necessity; however, as a small business begins to establish itself, they may see benefits in creating a sister company to compliment their existing business. Just like when a business owner begins their first business, business owners will need to acquire the proper licenses and understand the laws that apply to such an action. When undertaking this endeavor, small businesses should be sure to cover their bases.
Even though the original business has an existing business plan, the business owner will need to modify it to take into account the sister company. They will also need to create a new business plan for the sister company. Wise business owners will also layout exactly how the two businesses will work with each other. This will ensure that the transition from existing suppliers is a smooth one. Also, if the sister company is going to have a different president than the owner of the original business, they will need to make sure each is on the same page.Continue reading "Creating a sister company to compliment your existing small business"
The success and growth of a company has a lot to do with how well they brand themselves. Everyone is familiar with the big brand names, but how did they become so well known? Branding refers to the reputation of a business's name and logo. Small businesses should establish their name and logo in order to boost their reputation and sales. This will eventually lead to growth and meeting business objectives. There are many ways to improve the reputation of a name or logo. Here are a few tips to get started with.
Small businesses should be very aware of how their name and logo are perceived by the public. The public perception will determine a business's success. Small business owners need to figure out how they want to be perceived before they can move forward. Businesses must be sure to figure out the best way to be perceived. By creating an unprofitable image for themselves, businesses could be creating walls that will prevent them from selling their image to both their employees and their customers.Continue reading "Branding for your small business"
Continue reading "Working to become mid level business"
If you have a small business and are working to become a mid level business, taking it to the next level could be difficult. It takes a lot of time and hard work, but in the end it will be worth it. Here some things to do as you are working to become a mid level business:
Create more customers:
Obviously the most important way to take your small business to a mid level business is to have customers and plenty of them. If you are not keeping in touch with your customers, then someone else will. Keep track of your customers and contact them throughout the year to let them know of any promotions or new products you have. This will keep them coming back. Plus, they may even tell their friends about you. Make sure to sell more of your product or service to the clients you already have. You can do this by having discounts on your products. Discounts give the opportunity to ring up additional sales without taking too big of a cut in profit. Another way is rewarding customers by giving them a free service or product when they buy a certain amount through your business.
Working for your self is a dream that many people aspire to achieve. Many individuals can work for themselves, but not all of them will be successful. The sense of freedom, and time are usually some of the main reasons for wanting your own small business. So, what do you need to do to achieve your goal of working for your self? First let's take a look at the top reasons people choose to work for themselves and create their own small business.
Achieving the goal of working for yourself allows you to:
Be there for your family
This reason alone is usually why people want to work for themselves. It is such a wonderful thing to be able to spend the time that you want with your loved ones. If a child has a performance of some kind, you can easily make it because you call the shots.
Choose your own hours
The first thing your need to know about copyrighting is whether or not your need an actual copyright or a patent or even a trademark. Before your go to all of the work to get one, make sure it is the right one.
A copyright is for something that is an original to you that falls under the category of artwork, music, or written works. This means that if you draw a logo for your business, a copyright is the right thing to apply for. If you come up with a catchy slogan, a copyright would be the right thing as well. Your business jingle can also be copyrighted as long as it was written especially for your business.
Before beginning a business, it is important to know how much money is going to be needed to run it. Every business owner should be completely in the know of every financial aspect of the company. Mismanaging money is dangerous and a complete waste that can be easily avoided with a clear and organized financial plan. Building a financial plan after everything has been done to outline the business keeps the goals of the company from being compromised. Here are some things to remember to have in the financial outline that will help one to master this aspect of their business.
Sit down with an accountant and work through some numbers. These are things that need to be thought through thoroughly:
Raising the financing for your small business 101. As you venture into the world of small business financing, you will find there are several different options you can look into. Though, each of these options has some positives and negatives that may make one options more appealing than the other.
In order to raise the needed funds for your small business, you will need to look at what you have to offer to your own business. This can be in the form of good credit, equity in a home, tools, a great business plan, or family and friends who have money and who will trust you with that money.Continue reading "Raising the financing for your small business 101"
How to identify your SWOT?
A man named Albert Humphrey created the technique, known as SWOT, when leading a research project at Stanford University in the 1960's and 1970's using data from the Fortune 500 companies. This stands for strength, weakness, opportunity, and threats. SWOT analysis is a strategic planning tool used to evaluate the factors involved in a project or in a business venture. In doing so, the external and internal factors that are favorable and unfavorable are identified in order to achieve an objective.
If an objective has been identified, SWOT analysis can be used to help in the pursuit of that objective. SWOT's are identified as:Continue reading "How to identify your SWOT (strength, weakness, opportunity, threats)"
To get start up funding and to maintain funding for your business until you can turnover a profit you need to have a plan. The most successful way to run your business is to be prepared, organized, and to have written out plans and ideas.
First, you are going to want to decide if this is a venture you want to take on alone or if you may want to have a partner. Having a partner can take away a lot of the financial burden, since both of you can bring assets and capital into a business. If this is not the route you are looking to take, then you will need to be ready to risk all of your own finances and assets.
While many of us would like to think that we are experts in a lot of different subjects we are not nearly close enough to be considered experts in everything. When it comes to starting a small business many of us will open a business that we know something about so we can be considered an expert in that filed. But we can sometimes run into trouble when starting our business if we try to be experts in fields that we know nothing about. Lucky for us there are consulting services that we can use to get our businesses up and running.
Consulting services are services that are offered by a professional. Consultants in the business profession can include lawyers, certified public accountants, marketing, management, information technology, and regular business consultants. Let's look and see how different types of consulting services can be used to get your small business off the ground.
A business brief has several definitions depending on the purpose of the brief and the audience that it is intended for. In its simplest forms a brief is most frequently described as a document that presents an argument as to why their case in a given situation should succeed. The brief is intended to give its reader reasons to turn to the writer's side of thinking. Much like a legal brief is designed to provide an argument as to why the courts should grant the wishes of one party and not another, a business brief is a creative and strategic mode for winning customers and increasing revenue.
Writing a good business brief will typically take time and practice. Business professionals are discovering that a well written business brief is becoming rarer. The corporate world is shifting away from traditional briefings and adapting the business brief to match the needs of our faster paced business world.
A budget manual is a written set of instruction that serve as a rulebook and reference book for your company's budget. This manual is going to be used for information in writing your budget. So when creating a budget manual you are going to want to know the basics of your budget so that you can write down how you are going to want budget plans submitted. Your budget manual can also be your budget process, basically the steps you are going to take to plan your budget.
Here are some steps that should be covered in your budget process.Continue reading "What is a budget manual, and how do you create one"
A business plan is a blueprint and communication tool for your business. It is a device that helps you, as the owner, spell out how you intend to operate your business and serves as a road map to tell others how you expect to get there. A business plan can detail alternative future scenarios and set specific objectives and goals. It can also include the resources that may be required to achieve these goals.
Many business owners believe that a business plan is intended only to show investors that they are making a good investment if they choose to lend money to your business. However, business plans are a valuable part of everyday management. Without a business plan, businesses often find themselves `shooting at the hip', so to speak. They are forced to be reactive rather than proactive and managing business can be a chaotic event. Business plans that are implemented well will give you and your business direction and purpose so that everyone is working towards achieving the same goals.
If you are an independent contractor, or any employee other than a foreign national (in which case you need to use a W-8 form), then you need to obtain a W-9 statement before you begin work, even if it's just for a one-time job, such as refereeing a high school basketball game.
A W-9 form is an IRS form that is also called a "Request for Taxpayer Identification Number and Certification." The W-9 form is used by any individual defined under law as a "U.S. person" or "resident alien" to verify his or her taxpayer identification number (TIN) with an employer or other entity.
If you own a small business, then you should know what types of retirement programs you can set up in your company. Knowing your different options can help you maximize the value of your retirement programs for both yourself as an employer and also for your employees. For more in depth information on the retirement programs that are available, you should contact your local IRS office and also check out the following website at the Department of Labor:
The Department of Labor has a special group set up called the Employee Benefits Security Administration that helps distribute pension plans and also can help you as an employer know what your options are. Contact the EBSA for more information and greater detail when you are trying to set up your retirement plan to make sure that you are complying with all of the rules and regulations.
For small businesses one question they might ask themselves is whether or not it would be worth their while to get an 800 phone number. They are on a quest for success and they need to know if an 800 number would be beneficial to them. Because they are small, success is especially important for them in order to keep running, as without consistent profits, they will shut down. Big businesses can afford little losses here and there while small businesses cannot.
So if you are a small business and you need to know whether or not it would be beneficial for you to get an 800 number. So, let's take a look at that: 800 hundred numbers do have their good points. Those good points just might be exactly what your business needs for an extra boost in the right direction.
So you are a small business and you are trying to make decisions for your company. For small business, the decisions you make are very important, and can effect whether or not you stay in business in a big way. More so than if you were a big business. Big businesses can afford little losses where as small business cannot. Little things mean much more for small businesses than they do for big businesses, as the impact is much greater (though that is not to say big business should be careless).
One thing that many small businesses wonder about is whether or not they should us an airline credit card. Airline credit cards can be very good for certain people in certain situations. But are you one of those people? If you want to know whether or not to use an airline credit card you will need to examine yourself and see if it is best for your situation. Do so by doing the following:
Laser printer quality gives your business documents a professional edge. Limiting your documents to only black and white can hurt your image as a successful business. Color can tell a story or explain a concept much easier that black and white alone. You probably already understand the advantages of printing your own color-filled brochures, diagrams, stationery, and invoices.
But now I'm sure that you are asking yourself, "How on earth am I going to be able to afford a fancy color laser printer?" or, "There are so many color laser printer options, how do I choose?" Both are valid questions. You have just started your own business and you most likely do not have hundreds of dollars just lying around, but you know that this purchase is worth the investment.Continue reading "The top color laser printer for small business"
If you are running a small business there are many things that you have to pay for. There are many costs to consider such as the products you will be selling, where will you get them, how much will you pay for them? One thing that you will have to pay for is business auto insurance.
Some people will just cover their business cars under their personal auto insurance because it is also their personal car. This could be fine in some instances, until you got in a car accident. If you were involved in a car accident and they found out that you were using the car for business purposes at the time, the insurance probably would not cover the accident and you would have to pay those costs out of pocket. That would be a real bummer.Continue reading "Getting auto insurance for your business:"
A Value-added reseller or VAR takes desired features and adds them to a product for sale. In the computer industry, a VAR would take a type of software program that the customer wants and add it to the hard drive of an existing piece of computer equipment. Then this is sold as a new package. Many VARs can make extremely “personal” computers for the entire company. These highly specialized systems are valued higher by the client that they were created for because they were built to their own specifications.
Before deciding on whether or not working with a value-added reseller is right for you, consider these pros and cons. Also, consider the advantages and disadvantages to using a VAR for both computer purchases and support.
The top 10 reasons for using the Noguchi Filing System-
10. This Japanese filing system optimizes documents by frequency of use.
This filing system called the Noguchi Filing System is an alternative to subject-based filing (as it's often hard to know what priority to categorize a document). By refiling documents in a way that groups frequently accessed materials at the front of the file-shelf, it automatically optimizes itself for putting most urgent documents closest to hand.
9. The Noguchi Filing System is easy to learn. New documents (envelopes) are added at the left end of the "envelope buffer," and whenever a document is used (i.e., the envelope removed from the shelf), it is returned to the left end of the bookshelf. The result of this system is that the most recent (and frequently) used documents migrate to the left, while documents that are not used often or not used at all migrate to the right. After the system has been in use for a while it becomes easy to see which documents are used most.
For small businesses, finding affordable health insurance is very important. Because you are small you do not have a ton of finances to work with like other bigger businesses do. You have to have health insurance for your employees, but you do not want it to be too expensive. That would just hurt your businesses rather than helping it. Many small businesses simply do not offer health benefits because of the cost, but there are better options.
When looking for good health insurance there are steps you need to take so that you get the best possible health insurance for the best (and an affordable) price. If you are not cautious then you could miss out on deals that would be great for your business. The first thing that you will want to make sure to do is to research a bunch of different plans. Do not go with the first one that looks good, research a lot of them and compare all their features. If it helps, set up a spread sheet to compare so it is clear what is best, and what exactly you would be paying for.Continue reading "How to find affordable small business health insurance:"
You have been thinking about starting up your dream business with your retirement funds. Nevertheless, the questions remain.
What options are available to obtain funding to start a small business? Is borrowing from retirement funds a good place for funding to start a business? How much will be needed to be borrowed? Are there penalties?
Borrowing from your retirement savings may not be a bad idea. Most plans allow you to borrow up to 50% of the value of your account. Generally, this is penalty free, as long as you pay the loan back in a timely manner.Continue reading "Starting a business with your retirement funds."
If you are a small business owner in today's world, you may have asked yourself, "Should I get a postage meter?" based on the amount of correspondence you send out on a regular basis. If you find that you are constantly making trips to the post office or other postage retailer, or that you have considered the convenience of online postage services, then a postage meter may be right for you.
A postage meter is used to indicate that Postage meters may be used for any class of mail except Periodicals.Continue reading "Should I Get a Postage Meter?"
Things that should be part of a business partnership-
A business partnership needs to have certain parts or else it will not be successful. These are what those parts are:
You have to be able to trust each other: In order to have a successful partnership you have to be able to trust each other. If you cannot trust each other your business will not run successfully. You have to know that your partner is going to go through with their part and they have to know that you are going to go through with your part. Otherwise your business will not ever do well, it will just stay stuck in one spot and you will eventually have to close.
Teaming up with a copy center to build your business makes a lot of sense. There are a lot of expenses to consider when you are trying to start up your business. You should not have to worry about spending your money to buy your own customized document equipment, when you can just use someone else's.
Maybe the most well-known of all the copy centers is Kinkos (or FedEx Kinkos as they now go by). From their website you can learn that they serve 435 of the "Fortune 500" companies. They work with some of the largest businesses world wide. Also, they have at least 1,200 locations. All of these locations are what they call "digitally connected" so you can use their services no matter where you are. Kinko's also has a worldwide staff of over 20,000 people.Continue reading "How to use Kinkos or a copy center to build your business"