Yearly Archives: 2011

Year In Review: Top Social-Media Articles

2011 is the year that social media took the small-business world by storm. If you’ve yet to begin engaging with your customers through today’s popular social channels, you could be doing your business a disservice.

If you’re a little behind the curb, be sure to check out our top social-media articles of the year.

1. Running a Company Blog: What are the Returns?
>>Read It Now.

2. Facebook Fails: Social Media No-No’s and Pitfalls to Avoid
>>Read It Now.

3. Should You Start a Tumblr Blog for your Business?
>>Read It Now.

Year in Review: Top Business Tips Articles

If you’re a regular reader of this blog, you know first hand that we provide a lot of content to help you run your business smarter. So you could see our dilemma in picking the top 5 business-tips articles of the year out of this bunch.

It was tough, but here’s our top 5 according to the editors. Let us know if we missed your favorite.

1. How to Reach Mobile Users With Your Marketing
>>Read It Now.

2. Three Ways to Build Web Traffic
>>Read It Now.

3. What Are the Tax Structures for Corporations and LLCs?
>>Read It Now.

Year In Review: Top Cloud Computing Articles

2011 was the year of cloud computing — when the ‘cloud’ hit the mainstream consciousness. If you’ve been out of the loop, check out our top 5 cloud computing articles of the year.

Demystifying the Cloud: An Explanation of Cloud Computing for the Nontechnical Business Leader
>>Read It Now.

The Developer/Reseller/Technologist’s Guide to Selling Cloud Computing to Small-Business Clients
>>Read It Now.

The Cloud at Newtek: Past, Present, and Future
>>Read It Now.

What Business Owners Need to Know About Web Hosting
>>Read It Now.

3 Real-World Problems Solved Using Cloud Computing
>>Read It Now.

November SB Authority Index Shows Continued Slow Growth For the Small Business Economy

Nov 2011 SB Authority Index

Today we released our much anticipated SB Authority Index.

The November Index, which grew .31% from October, shows continued slow growth for the U.S. small business economy. The slight increase was due to ADP’s employment report and retail sales.

Read our full press release.

3 Real-World Problems Solved Using Cloud Computing

cloud computing

From a restaurant owner who keeps tabs on employee theft to a new venture that dodged $20,000 in startup costs, here are real-world examples of how small businesses are storing, accessing, and exchanging computerized information in the cloud.

1. Watching Transactions for Theft – Restaurants and bars with multiple locations are sending their POS (point of sales) information to the cloud where it is not only stored, but also analyzed by an application that employs artificial intelligence to search for unusual patterns that could indicate theft. The product is called Aloha Restaurant Guard. It’s installed in 65,000 restaurants nationwide, said Jessica Lundberg, senior marketing manager of Radiant Systems, the manufacturer of the Aloha suite of products, and because Restaurant Guard is cloud-based, it stores enormous amounts of historical data, analyzing it using algorithms created to spot scams.

What's a WOSB and Is It True the Government Is Awarding Them Contracts?

business owner

A small business that is solely owned by a woman or majority owned by a woman can be in an advantageous position for getting contracts from U.S. government agencies. The fact is that women tend to run smaller, less profitable companies than men do, earning 78 cents to the dollar men’s businesses generate1, and women’s small businesses are therefore provided a helping hand.

Hate Writing Job Descriptions? Then Don’t


It’s widely stated that the best job performance starts with a good job description, but the fact is you don’t need one. Of course, if you’ve created a company where the titles are creative—chief architect of change, chief fun arranger, meter/greeter/popcorn eater—you need to set down a few things on paper to make sure you and your new hire understand one another. But generally, job descriptions are dreary to read and to write and don’t do much to elucidate anyone. There’s no law saying you must write them.

How to Negotiate With an Ace Negotiator


From childhood you’ve used these skills to get what you want, but negotiation know-how can fizzle when you start to think more about your relative inexperience than about what you want and why. In business, you may feel out of your league negotiating with someone who horse-trades every day. It’s easy to feel intimidated when it’s time to talk compensation with a salesperson, or hire a sales director, or convince a banker of your loan worthiness, or hammer out a contract with a major vendor. If your negotiation skills need sharpening, read on for some tips from the pros.

Begin Your Green Journey With a Cup of Coffee


Imagine this, even if you’re not a morning person:

You’re the first to arrive at the office. You turn on the light in the break room and start brewing a pot of coffee. You take out a paper filter and load the industrial-sized coffee machine. You go back to your office and wait a few minutes. Once the coffee has brewed, you grab a Styrofoam cup and pour yourself some Joe. As you exit the break room, you leave the light and hot plate on to keep the coffee warm and note to the latecomers that the day has begun.

Before You Import, Ask These Questions


After vacationing in Thailand, you’ve decided to add beautiful button-up shirts made in Bangkok to the shelves of your U.S.-based clothing store.

But the customs process is complicated and convoluted. Where do you begin? Ask questions.

Ask your attorney.

First, make sure you understand the law regarding importers.

Because of the hefty penalties involved with improperly importing goods, consider hiring a lawyer who is well-versed in the import process.

“Under the Customs Modernization Act (‘Mod Act’), importers are legally responsible for determining the correct classification and value of the imported merchandise,” according to Lawyers.com1. Duty calculation and recordkeeping are included in their responsibilities.