If you run one of the 14+ million home-based small businesses in the United States, congratulations. You’ve got lower overhead, a shorter commute and the opportunity to be more productive than your office-based competitors.
Still, working from home isn’t all eating peanut butter out of the jar and wearing your fuzzy slippers. There are plenty of pitfalls that can distract you from getting your work done. Here we look at 10 ways to ensure you’re set up for success in your home office.
1. Carve Out a Workspace...
It’s hard to believe with all the options we have for sharing contact information electronically, but the good old-fashioned business card is not going away any time soon. According to a survey by global crowdsourcing marketplace Designcrowd, a whopping 87 percent of Americans still exchange business cards when they meet someone for the first time.
If you think this is an empty gesture done out of habit, think again. More than two-thirds of survey respondents say business cards are useful because they either enter the information into...
There was a time, a few decades ago, when I thought sticking to the plan was a good for business. “Because that’s the plan” seemed like a good thing. But I’ve changed my mind.
Having a plan is absolutely a good thing. And sticking to the planning process — which means regularly checking results, evaluating progress, and revising a plan — is absolutely a good thing too. But sticking to a plan? Just because it’s supposedly something people do? No.
Years ago, I was one of four friends taking a two-week...
If you have at least one employee, you’re responsible for payroll taxes. These include withholding federal (and, where appropriate, state) income taxes and FICA tax from employees’ wages as well as paying the employer share of FICA tax and federal and state unemployment taxes. The responsibility is great and the penalties for missteps make it essential that you do things right.
1. Misclassifying workers
Perhaps the hottest audit issue today is misclassifying workers. There’s incentive to treat workers as...
You need to know how long it’s going to take to start recouping your investment in the franchise concept you’ve chosen. You certainly shouldn’t have to guess how long it’s going to take for you to see some green.
If you’d like to find out when the money will start rolling in, keep reading. I’m going to show you how to get that money question answered.
Open For Business
The day you open your franchise business up, you should see some money rolling in.
That day…Grand Opening Day should be a day to...
While some of online marketing is trendy and will inevitably fade away, there’s no disputing that content marketing is here to stay. If you’ve heard this buzzword, but aren’t really clear on what it includes, that’s probably because its definition is expanding as marketers find new ways to provide content to their audience.
In general, content marketing includes:
How to Get More Readers (and Thereby Customers)
The point of content marketing is to attract...
Business credit reports play an integral role in credit risk assessment and company research. Access to detailed information about a business such as background info, financial data, payment trends, company size, payment history and public filings provide the necessary details lenders, suppliers, investors and potential business partners need.
Your company credit reports and scores are constantly changing based on a variety of factors, including payment history, number of trade lines and outstanding balances. It’s essential to keep a...
You’ve heard time and again that social media marketing is the key to your business’s success. But, do you know where the corresponding lock is? Or how to use it? Social media can seem like a behemoth of a marketing strategy sucking up all your time with results that trickle in at first. Well, fear not; we’re here to set you on a clear, strategic path of the right ways to make social media work for your particular enterprise.
Start with the Big Picture
Is anyone on Google+? Will all these social media efforts even make a dent...
We all know marketing is key to small business survival and success. And these days we’re so inundated with marketing platforms and tools that it can be overwhelming to know what to do to be an effective marketer.
What you need is a marketing action plan so you can lay out a path to follow. First though, warns Hal Shelton, a business executive, SCORE board member and author of The Secrets of Writing a Successful Business Plan, you need to define your company’s buying cycle.
As an example Shelton offers this cycle:
I’ve been working on a new startup with some long-time friends and just discovered – again, for the umpteenth time – how the interaction between words, concepts, and numbers often demands the concrete logic of core business plan numbers.
Specifically, a sales forecast and an expense budget can do wonders for early start-up discussions. Putting specific numbers to things forces definitions and decisions. For the record, our new plan isn’t a restaurant; it’s a high-tech web-based offering. But it’s still...