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If you want to start selling products, you might be wondering whether opening a franchise or becoming an affiliate could be a good move. Both franchisees and affiliates market products developed by other people, but they do so in very different ways. Let us explain the difference between a franchise and an affiliate. What is a Franchise? A franchise is a licensing arrangement between a brand and an individual. If you want to become a franchisee, you must contact the parent company and appl
An employee benefits package that includes a retirement savings plan is a key tool employers use to attract and retain top talent. Over the past 30 years, more companies have moved from offering defined benefit plans to defined contribution plans in order to help reduce risk and control costs. Yet, if employees do not elect to contribute to the plan or contribute too little too late, employers are not providing the security they sought to offer as a benefit. To discover whether employees are tak
Recognized every year since 1963, National Small Business Week (April 30 to May 6) celebrates the many contributions that America's entrepreneurs and small-business owners make to our economy. According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, more than half of Americans work for or own a small business and such companies are responsible for every two out of three American jobs. Despite the challenges and sacrifices entrepreneurs face when running their own enterprises, a recent survey by All
Lawmakers spend a lot of time talking up the virtues of the American small business, and a lot of time finding new ways to define it. The Marketplace Fairness Act — the high profile bill passed by the Senate last week that would make online retailers collect sales taxes — has what many have called a "small business exemption" for firms making less than $1 million in out-of-state revenue. A small business tax reform bill introduced by House Minority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., last year def
Since Donald Trump's victory in last month's presidential election, there has been much speculation about the future of the United States' progress toward its Paris climate commitments. Many voices have highlighted the expected leadership role of private-sector investment in the continued growth of clean technology markets. One such opportunity for the private sector is energy-efficiency investments in and by the nation's small businesses. According to a 2013 report by the Preservation Green
As a small business proprietor, you probably enjoy moving to the beat of your own drum. But doing everything on your own might not get you very far. Some of the most successful business owners have strong support systems. Regardless of whether that support comes from family or friends, having someone in your corner can give you the confidence you need to make bold moves. What Is a Support Network? Your support network can be made up of a lot of different kinds of people and not all of them h
There's reason that place is one of the original 4Ps of Marketing since it determines your business's location physically and mentally in your prospect's mind. A bad small business location causes your firm to be out of sight and out of mind for your audience. Your small business marketing must compensate to stay visible and easy to do business with. In today's connected world, you may think that a bad small business location matters less. But as my Accounting professor used to say, "It de
Facebook has introduced a new feature that allows businesses to connect with consumers on a deeper level. Businesses can now share article-length content with Facebook's Instant Articles. It's basically a publishing tool, similar to the one LinkedIn members use. What makes it "instant?" The articles load (almost) instantly, which means readers aren't waiting for that sluggish bar to slide across the screen before actually seeing the article. Facebook says the articles load ten times faster
One of the biggest challenges of launching a new business is finding the cash to get things started. Fortunately, there are options besides winning the lottery or receiving a large inheritance, including small business loans, credit cards, bootstrapping with retirement savings, seeking private investment, and crowdfunding. Before we examine the various funding sources, here is some general advice on preparing to finance your business pursuits. 1. Do Your Homework Before you approach any
If you are self-employed, you might be overwhelmed by the expenses you have, including your self-employment tax liabilities. However, you can claim self-employment tax deductions to reduce the amount you owe in taxes. See how you can take advantage of self-employed tax relief below. Who is self-employed? You are self-employed if your business is unincorporated. Generally, self-employment applies to businesses structured as sole proprietorships, partnerships, and limited liability companie
Consider American Dixie Group, Inc., founded by Lay Cooper in 1989 in Albany, New York, to build the industrial machines used in food processing, packaging, and plastic making. The business became successful, was praised for its problem-solving wizardry, and served customers like Nestle and Campbell Soup. As long as the business remained small, with no more than two dozen employees in the shop and a half dozen or so projects in the pipeline, it apparently performed quite well. As it expanded, ho
A cooperative or co-op is a business entity formed by a set of individuals who have a common goal or interest. A cooperative is member-owned and democratically controlled, meaning the members have an equal say, and its purpose is to meet the needs of the members. As such, forming a cooperative can be a good choice when a group of people acting together can accomplish a goal that could not be accomplished by individual members acting on their own. When your small business idea concerns a group
Incoming revenue is vital to business growth, but it doesn't paint the most accurate financial picture of your business. You must know whether your company is profiting after deducting business expenses. You need to determine your business's net income. Calculating your business's net income helps you determine your business's profitability, decide whether to expand or reduce operations, plan budgets, and relay information to investors. Learn what net income is, how to calculate net income
We all know that having a solid marketing plan is critical to successfully launching whatever you're promoting – whether a book, product, or your own personal brand. And, in my experience, the best marketing plans take a blended approach with multiple components. In many cases, although not all, the media is a part of a strong campaign. But with everyone's products vying for media attention, how do you go about getting their interest to secure coverage for your product? Know Your Media: Fir
Writing employees checks is one way you can pay them their wages. But if an employee takes too long to deposit their paycheck, you have to deal with the consequences. There are a few things you might have to do when paychecks are outstanding checks. What are outstanding checks? Outstanding checks are checks that have not been deposited or cashed by the recipient. Because the recipient has not cashed the check, the payor still has the money in their account. The payor still owes the payee mon
Are employers stepping up to the plate when it comes to providing employees with retirement savings opportunities? For the second year, the ADP Research Institute® examined the types of companies — by size and type of industry — that offer retirement benefits, as well as the retirement savings behaviors of approximately 10 million U.S. Among the key findings: Just 1/3 of small companies (those with less than 20 employees) offer retirement benefits, compared to nearly 98 % of companie
What do you need to know about small business loans before you apply? A lot! You have a lot of options, and there are a lot of variables in the equation that determines whether you'll qualify for the loan you're applying for (or whether that loan is even a good fit for you and your business). Last week I had the privilege of inviting Scott Blum, Vice President of SmartBizLoans, to join me in hosting a free webinar on the ins and outs of small business loan options. We covered the different
Essentially, a business plan is the management and financial blueprint of your company. It is meant to serve as both your business guide and as a tool to help you attract investors. The plan should be comprehensive yet concise. It should explain the characteristics of your business, as well as discuss how the business will be financed and managed and how it will function in its target market. There is no limit to the length of a plan, though the average is probably under 50 pages. Your plan s
As a small business owner or marketing professional, you likely don't have the resources of a mega-brand to market your service or product as aggressively or with the same reach. But that doesn't mean you can't still make a strong impact with targeted and creative ideas that will both help you to get your small business in front of a new audience, and retain and engage the customers you already have. We've chosen 5 of our favorite small business marketing ideas to help you re-think your size
Let me start off by saying that digital marketing for local and small businesses does not need to be difficult. Many of the companies I've worked with in the past see it as a daunting task that is going to take too much time, money and a team of people to do. Sometimes they are right, but a majority of the time they are just trying to do too much at once. Internet marketing as a whole encompasses a broad set of activities, but local and small businesses do not need to do all of them. They just n
We all need advice from time to time and this is especially true for business owners. There are numerous challenges that need to be tackled on a regular basis, from staff to money to growth. Even if your business is doing well, dealing with these issues is simply the nature of owning a business. Business owners also regularly need support and advice to keep taking the business to the next level. Feeling supported and able to reach out for help when needed, can be the difference between giving
Preparing financially for retirement can be complicated for anyone, but for small business owners the process often poses even more challenges. Teachers, police officers, firefighters and other government employees generally receive a pension. The corporate world can offer benefit plans or matching contributions. But entrepreneurs can't automatically rely on any of those features; instead they have to put saving/investing plans in place for themselves and their employees. And often, Small
To be completely honest with you, I can't stand doing my small business' bookkeeping, but I understand it's importance. It's what keeps our businesses headed in the right direction and lets us know how far we have left to go, but it takes dedication and knowledge to do properly. At Kahuna Accounting, one aspect of the value we provide to our clients and anyone interested in learning more about how to get a grasp on their business' financials is education. Articles, webinars, video tutorials,
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