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Small Business Blog - daily small business software blog

:: 3 Tips for a Small Business Strategy

04/18/2014
But Pubsoft Director of Marketing Heather Wied says small businesses should not spread themselves thin trying to master every social network under the sun. Pubsoft, which helps businesses publish online content, integrates social networking to help customers spread the word about their businesses.

The best social network for you is dependent on your target market, says Wied.

To maximize your time on social media – without losing your mind – check out Wieds three best tips:

complete article

:: Facebook Small Business Advertisers

04/13/2014
After years of courting the nations biggest advertisers, Facebook is going after the 99%.

That figure represents the long tail of advertisers; the plumbers and dentists, restaurants and political candidates, app developers and direct-response advertisers. These small and mid-sized businesses do not have Facebook account reps and are left to figure out Facebook advertising for themselves.

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:: How To Choose The Right Apps To Manage Your Small Business

04/16/2014
At Sage, we meet with small business owners regularly to get a complete picture of how their businesses run. We have had countless discussions about the tools these business owners use and why they chose them. These are businesses of all types, sizes and ages; but do you know what is common among them?

To some degree, they all use a mix of tools that are either the wrong fit or not connected with each other…or both. One conversation that comes to mind was with a consultant who was using desktop accounting software that she described as too much for her needs. This business owner used three separate applications to track time, organize tasks, and collect online payments, none of which were connected to each other. She struggled with sharing pertinent information with her business partner who was in another city. The result was frustration and wasted time as she tried to make it all work, and she is not alone.

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:: Small Business Tax Paperwork

04/14/2014
Owners now say the administrative burdens of tax season pose a bigger burden than their actual tax bill.

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:: Clean Up Your Small Business Tech

04/11/2014
After a winter most of us would like to forget, spring is here. But with the good, comes the bad it is time for a little spring cleaning, or to spruce up your small business technology. Considering how fast business is evolving, this is going to take more than the traditional broom and dustpan.

If you, like many small business owners, have been reluctant to invest in new business technology dues to the after-effects of the Great Recession, this is the time to finally get moving and create and implement digital priorities. Here are some tasks you need to put on your  spring cleaning checklist:

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:: 5 Money Saving Tips for Small Businesses

04/09/2014
Owning your own company can be a dream from making your own hours and choosing your own staff, to even doing something you love. However, owning a small business can also be really exhausting, difficult, and time consuming. If you are still looking into self-employment, doing your research first will help. However, if you already own a small business, your next task might be determining how you can save time and money on that business. There are many easy ways for small business owners to save time, including choosing the appropriate staff, picking deadlines, and using programs that are designed to help business owners save time, like Zirtual assistant. Many of the tools that save time also save money, and Zirtual’s assistants are a great example of this. Read on to learn five ways you can save money for your small business, and hopefully, save some time too.

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:: 5 Great Things Managers Do

04/07/2014
Despite the importance of putting the right people in charge, companies fail to choose the managerial candidate with the right talent for the job 82 percent of the time, according to new research from Gallup. The research revealed that, overall, just 1 in 10 people possess the talent needed to manage others.

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:: Simple Lessons for Entrepreneurial Success

04/04/2014
1. Get comfortable being uncomfortable.
2. Commit yourself.
3. Really understand your clients/customers/target audience.
4. Get connected.
5. Prioritize.
6. Team up.
7. Find your balance.
8. Say what you mean and mean what you say.
9. Make it fun! Starting

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:: Three Questions To Ask Your Lawyer Before Starting A Small Business

04/02/2014
Gaining customers. Producing a quality product. Finding new markets. These are the things that small business owners focus on when starting their latest venture. But while entrepreneurs are busy planning for the future, many fail to prepare for the worst.

Businesses large and small are loaded with risk. Liability is—or should be—a chief concern. Too many entrepreneurs, however, overlook the need to plan for and manage risk when launching their businesses.

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:: Run Your Small Business Like an Enterprise

03/31/2014
Just because you are small does not mean you have to act small. With a few smart adjustments and a solid NAS setup, you can give your company the capabilities of the big guys in a package that will not break the budget.

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:: Tell Your Business Story

03/21/2014
Drawing from that experience, he has learned a number of lessons about how to and how not to convey a the backstory behind any given company, and he shared several tips this week with entrepreneurs, filmmakers and music producers, and one journalist at a small gathering in Austin during South by Southwest.

complete article

:: Small Businesses Hurt By Change to Overtime Laws

03/19/2014
President Obama told the Labor Department to come up with new overtime rules that would make more workers eligible for time and a half pay for their extra hours of work.

The rules are aimed at salaried workers who make more than $455 a week and are ineligible for overtime because they hold a manager or supervisor position.

Ty Spatta started his own painting business 20 years ago.  He enjoys being a small business owner, but gets frustrated when he hears the government wants to step in and make businesses pay employees more.

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The AFL-CIO is applauding the anticipated move, saying the proposal could help raise wages and create jobs. Business groups, however, say it would be a job killer.

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:: Small Business 101, Get Started

03/18/2014
Take a good look at that store on the corner. There is a 10 percent to 12 percent chance it will not be there next year, according to the Office of Advocacy for the Small Business Administration.

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:: Small Businesses Grow in Clusters

03/17/2014
Tradition has it that where big businesses are rooted, vibrant small business communities follow. It happened in Harrison, N.Y., when Mastercard and PepsiCo set up shop. It happened in Redmond, Wash. after Microsoft moved in. It is happening in Greenville, S.C., where BMW built an SUV manufacturing plant.

complete article

:: Small Businesses Staying Small

02/27/2014
A survey of business owners finds small businesses may remain small to avoid employee health coverage required by the Affordable Care Act, commonly called Obamacare.

Oklahoma City-based staffing firm Express Employment Professionals surveyed business owners, hiring managers and human resource professionals on the ACA and its impact on hiring decisions.

The survey found that 70 percent of survey respondents whose companies have 45 - 49 employees said they would try to remain under 50 employees. Businesses with 50 or fewer full-time employees do not face a penalty for not offering health coverage under Obamacare.

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:: Why Growth Can Destroy a Small Business

02/26/2014
Small Businesses have a desire to grow – grow their sales, customer numbers and enter new markets. However unless you have adequate resources and a clearly defined strategy, then growth can lead to the demise of your small business.

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:: 11 Tax Solutions for Small Businesses

02/25/2014
Small business owners shouldn't have to do their taxes on their own. Tax solutions provide a do-it-yourself way to easily prepare and file taxes — without all the guesswork. If you don't have an accountant, or tax services are way out of your budget, there are several tax apps, software and other tools specifically created with small business tax needs in mind. Here are 10 tax solutions to get you started.

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:: Small Business Ideas for Cities

02/24/2014
Small towns and cities seem to be gaining popularity as locations for startups, but a metropolis like New York or Los Angeles is still great place to own a small business. With a large population as your potential customer base, there are plenty of opportunities to make your entrepreneurial dreams come true. Here are seven small business ideas for big cities.

complete article

:: What I Learned About Business Shoveling Snow

02/21/2014
While shoveling 8 to 10 inches of snow out of my driveway during our fourth Northeastern storm, I started thinking about running my small business. The decision process I used to clear my driveway is similar to the decisions you need to make to run a small business.

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:: Entrepenurial Nightmares

02/20/2014
What is affecting me, my clients and other small-business owners today?

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:: How to Prepare for a Data Breach

02/19/2014
That is the crux of the problem facing Americas small businesses and consumers: they may not think they’ll be targets of hackers looking for big scores… but all of them probably will be. It is just too easy and too lucrative for hackers to gather and utilize people’s personal information for anyone to be safe – including small enterprises with databases that seem at first blush to be of limited utility.

Reality check: hackers will always go after the weakest link. If they determine that the big guys have toughened up, they’re just going to go after easier targets, like small businesses.

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:: Plan for Small Business Success

02/18/2014
Unfortunately, the first step that most business owners take involves sitting at their PCs and plugging away at outdated or unsuitable software technologies; and they make little progress. How can you avoid such a fate?

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:: 4 Social Media Mistakes Small Businesses Make

02/17/2014
Social media presents a useful and viable tool for a business to build their brand and increase their visibility. In fact, it is getting to the point where you are probably going to be at a disadvantage if you do not have at least some form of an online presence through these mediums.

While online marketing spans a wide range of topics, social media has quickly become the primary vehicle through which businesses and their websites increase traffic, reach potential clients and develop their brand. When done right, it is quite possibly the single-most useful tool at the disposal of todays website admin and or small business owner.

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:: 10 Things Your Phone Can Do in Emergency Situations

02/13/2014
Owning a cell phone has come to be regarded as a necessity in modern society, and with the great advances that have been made in smart phone technology, most of us rely on our phones to help us in an array of situations. While most smart phone owners are acquainted with the helpfulness of features such as navigation apps and mobile broadband, many people have yet to discover the array of uses they may put their phones to in the event of a true emergency.

10 Things Your Phone Can Do in Emergency Situations

:: Small Business Practices that Make a BIG Difference

02/12/2014
I have been running a small business since 1999, and at times it has been a trip through Hell. If I were to expound upon all the challenges and trials I have faced, you might ask what monumental changes I made to make things better. Looking back, what surprises me is how much of what has improved has been due to small and simple modifications in how I managed the business.

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:: Pension Plan for Your Small Business

02/11/2014
If you have a very small business and are looking to set up a retirement plan, you may want to consider a self-employed 401(k) plan.

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:: Moving Tips for Small Businesses

02/10/2014
When moving your business to a new location, proper planning saves you time and money. Packing and unpacking take time, and haphazardly placing critical support equipment in your new space can result in ongoing inefficiencies.

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:: Is Text Messaging Ruining Our Youth

02/12/2014
If you have noticed the apparent omnipresence of cell phones, as most of us surely have, it likely will not surprise you that about 86% of the worlds roughly seven billion people have access to a mobile phone, or that 80% of cell phone owners use their devices to send and receive text messages. You may also be unsurprised to learn that the vast majority of texts are sent by teenagers under eighteen, and that the average teen from this group sends over 3,300 texts each month. The story that these numbers tell is hardly something we do not know: while Generation X grew up with face-to-face communication and calls from the landline, the social sphere of today's youth exists on LCD screens.

Is Text Messaging Ruining Our Youth

:: Why Does The SBA Not Help Small Businesses Export

02/11/2014
Small business exporting has gotten plenty of attention since President Obama set the goal of doubling U.S. foreign sales in his 2010 State of the Union address. Despite the interest in helping more small companies sell abroad, only a small share of such businesses actually export, according to a report last week from the Congressional Research Service.

Complete Article

:: Small Businesses Take Responsibility for Your Mistakes

02/10/2014
There is a constant, prevalent in every entrepreneur who fails, without exception, and that is the entrepreneur unwilling to take responsibility for their own flaws, mistakes and shortcomings.
If you fall into this category and are unwilling to start taking responsibility for your mistakes, you will not be successful in your quest for prosperity and success. Because one thing is certain: No entrepreneur can have enduring, consistent success until they look at themselves and discover the real origin of their flaws.

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:: Small Businesses Not a Fan of Big Brands

02/08/2014
Americas 23 million small businesses should represent a giant market for big companies, particularly as small businesses leave the Great Recession in the rear-view mirror and look to invest in new equipment. One problem: Main Street does not seem to like large corporations much.

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:: Will Your Return Be Audited?

02/07/2014
Nothing sends small business owners into nail-biting mode than news that they are being audited.  Even if you have all your ducks in order and can defend your deductions and support your income, the process is still time-consuming, costly and nerve wracking.

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:: 10 Simple Ways to Cut Business Expenses

02/06/2014
Holly Perez, senior manager of personal finance software company Quicken, shared these 10 cost-cutting solutions to help you reduce your business's budget:

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:: Why Small Businesses Should Focus on Return on Investment

02/05/2014
With the recent controversy surround guest blog posting, it is easy to be pulled into the controversy. As always, there are contradicting viewpoints on small business SEO and the guidance from Google is, well, confusing at best.

Small business owners do not have the luxury of being wrong. They live close to the edge, and rainy-day financing is hard to come by.

For these reasons, small businesses need to be guided by statistics and analytics. They need to avoid wasting time in controversial discussions that have no end.

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:: Easiest Way to Fight Procrastination

02/04/2014
My task management system is rooted in the way my father helped me plan my school work. I was born in India but mostly raised in Abu Dhabi by parents, who set an excruciatingly high bar for academic achievement. My particular problem with studying was focus. I was good at my work, but I seldom got around to doing it. I had a tendency to drift off, let assignments pile-up, and then work myself into a funk as deadlines began to explode around me.

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