Looking to expand into overseas markets? Whether you are entering the export market, looking to upgrade your equipment or facilities in preparation for exporting, or helping your international buyers do business with you – there’s a U.S. government financing program that can help. With two thirds of the world’s purchasing power residing outside the U.S., the SBA is acutely aware that these global consumers play an important role in the long-term success of America's small businesses, and SBA is working to help small...
Looking to start or grow your high-tech entrepreneurial venture? Need financing to help fund research and development (R&D) efforts and realize your business potential? The U.S. federal government can help! In fact, in 2012, nearly 5,000 small businesses received over $1.8 billion in federal government grants and contracts to help them carry out the R&D necessary to develop and bring high-tech products to market. So how can your small business get in on the act? Here’s what you need to know: What Can the Government Do for the...
Considering upgrading your business’ point of sale system (POS) to one that runs on a mobile device or tablet? Mobile payment platforms that turn your tablet into a credit card processing device have become increasingly popular with small businesses, thanks to offerings from companies like Square, Intuit and PayPal. But mobile POS is evolving beyond being a convenient way to swipe credit cards on-the-go. The next generation of POS systems will not only turn your tablet into a cash register, they offer fully-fledged business management...
What does your online storefront look like? How are you attracting customers to purchase a product they can’t touch, feel or try until it arrives on their doorstep? This is a common, yet often overlooked, problem for small business owners who sell exclusively online through their own site or a third party site like Etsy or eBay. You might sell the most exquisite artisan product, but if you don’t present it effectively, shifting inventory might be harder than you think. The lynchpin of small business success, whether online or off,...
Interested in greening your business? Today is Earth Day 2013, so what better time to consider ways in which your business can play its part in saving the planet and reaping the cost benefits of operating more sustainably. But where do you start and what sustainability measures are right for your company? With more and more consumers choosing to “buy green” and many of them willing to pay higher prices for it, environmentally friendly business practices are here to stay. For the savvy business owner, the trick is knowing which...
Cash flow is the lifeblood of a business and critical in its growth. Small businesses are hugely dependent on their cash flow, and must either cut costs or scramble to find alternative funding when they are not being paid on time. With money tight and bank loans hard to get, a cash-strapped company can easily be pushed to the brink. But what are the basics of good cash flow management? Are there any cash flow templates you can leverage? Where does your breakeven analysis fit in? And, what strategies can you use to ensure cash is flowing,...
More than half of all U.S. businesses are based out of an owner’s home, and with this year’s tax season deadlines fast approaching, you may be wondering if your business qualifies for the deduction. To help business owners understand more about this important deduction, SBA sat down with IRS tax expert, Phyllis Grimes, about what is and what isn’t deductible. This interview is part of a series of short online videos hosted on SBA’s Small Business Learning Center, which offer tips and facts about all aspects of business...
If you are a sole proprietor, any earnings you make or expenses you incur as a business owner are included as part of your individual annual tax return (Form 1040). To calculate exactly what to report on Form 1040, you must itemize all operational income and expenses on one of two forms – Schedule C or Schedule C-EZ. But which one should you use and how do you file? Here’s what you need to know. Who Should Use Schedule C? Schedule C (Form 1040) Profit or Loss from Business is the federal tax form filed by most sole proprietors or...
The franchise industry, like all businesses, was not immune to the economic crisis of 2008 and the ensuing credit crunch. But the vital signs of a recovery are there. According to the International Franchise Association (IFA), many of the country’s business sectors currently starting to show growth mirror those sectors expected to be the leading drivers of employment in franchising this year. These include food service, health care, hospitality and construction—all sectors with a high concentration of franchise businesses. “...
Have you ever considered extending your small business storefront to Facebook? According to The New York Times, small retailers are having more success than their larger counterparts when it comes to selling socially with Facebook storefronts proving to be a successful outlet for small businesses with less than $100,000 in revenue and fewer than 10 employees. Yet Facebook storefronts present business owners with a number of challenges. For example, if you have a business page on Facebook, you do not own it; Facebook does, and as such, it is...
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