Learning Center & Resources for Small Business
On this page you will find a wealth of small business online resources, web marketing tools, videos and useful links for everything from marketing to running your small business. Small businesses owners are encouraged access, download & share any of the resources found here. My hope is that in doing so, you learn how to better market and grow your business online.
Small Business Web Marketing Blog
This blog is focused on helping you succeed with your online marketing campaigns. It also contains information on current trends and best practice for marketing your small business online. The blog is packed with advice and insight from my own experience as well as insight from my peers and other business owners. You can subscribe to the Small Business Marketing Blog RSS News Feed or just go directly to the Small Business Marketing Blog.
Instructional Videos for Small Business Web Marketing
Some of the videos here are my own short teaching videos on marketing your small business online and other videos are from people in the business of web marketing that I really admire because of their success. Fix a cup of coffee, sit back and learn from the pros without even having to lift a finger … that is unless you want to pause the video to take notes 🙂
Inspirational Videos for Small Business Owners
Let’s face it, we all need a kick in the butt sometimes to remind us why we got into business in the first place! These videos will inspire and motivate you to succeed beyond you wildest dreams in 2016. Go ahead and dream, it’s okay!
- Make 2016 Your Best Year Yet with this breakthrough video interview from Digital Triggers. Todd Hermon mentors some of the top business minds and athletes to get the most out of their performance. This video will inspire you to rise above mediocrity to your full potential!
- Top 10 Rules for Success in 2016 | by Eric Thomas. Eric used these rule to propel himself to becoming one of the worlds top motivation speakers. He started with nothing and build “Breathe University”. When you need a kick in the butt, this is the just the guy to do it!
The Business of Small Business – 7 Useful Resources
These links all have to do with the business of small business. Not all small businesses or micro businesses will need these resources, but they are all terrific places to explore even if you are just looking to take your business to the next level. Too many small businesses do not have a core mission statement, a written business plan, adequate bookkeeping, or have a good understanding what makes up their core market. These resources will help you put those things into place and take your business to the next level.
- Consumer Affairs – Compare Credit Card Processing Companies This is a great resource page to compare various credit card processing companies. There are reviews and several ways to compare each company.
- Small Business Administration – Small Business Development Centers provide assistance to small businesses and aspiring entrepreneurs throughout the United States and its territories. SBDCs help entrepreneurs realize the dream of business ownership and help existing businesses remain competitive in a complex, ever-changing global marketplace.
- SCORE – Small Business Entrepreneurs Network – SCORE offers the nation’s largest, network of free, expert business mentors. SCORE connects entrepreneurs with mentors for one-on-one help with your small business.
- LinkedIn Small Business Resources – LinkedIn is a great resources for many things, but small business networking is one of it’s stronger offerings. You should have a LinkedIn profile setup and begin using it regularly. If you don’t have one, we can add a LinkedIn profile setup to one of the small business web services packages we offer.
- Small Business Trends – This is a popular independent small business publication that has won several awards. It is written for small business owners for all types of small businesses and contains many great articles and further resources.
- IRS Small Business and Self-Employed Tax Center – I know, you would rather not think about this one! But don’t get caught not knowing what the tax code is for either Federal or State taxes when it comes to your small business. It is important to understand such things as who the IRS considers an employee and who can be paid as a sub-contractor. Also, know which items are considered business write-offs and which are not. Don’t let yourself get surprised at tax time!
- QuickBooks Small Business Center – Yep, the maker of the most used Bookkeeping software has it’s own small business center for running a small business. There are abundant finance resources here and a ton of great “how-to” articles.
Listing Your Business with Online Directories
- Google “My Business”. Click HERE to list your company with Google “My Business” (used to be Google Local). Be warned, there will be a multi-step process that includes waiting for a postcard to come in the mail with an activation code on it. You MUST have a physical or virtual address that mail can actually go to, a PO Box will not work.
- Bing Places for Business. Click HERE to register your business with the BING Places for Business directory. This listing will also require a physical address where a verification postcard will be sent. Once you get the card, you will need to login to the Bing Places portal and enter that verification code for your listing to become active.
- Yahoo Local Directory no longer exists. It was shut down as of Aug, 2014. Yahoo Local is now Aabaco Small Business. As many of you know, Yahoo is in the process of trying to sell their company. So, this may change in the not too distant future.“Aabaco Small Business” is the business that Yahoo runs that replaced Yahoo Local. They offer a service called “Local Works” that will register your business with over 50 online directories for $29.95 a month (price goes up as of Dec 31, 2015).
Suggested Reading to Make Your Business Soar
These are links to some of the best books and small business online resources on everything from the 80/20 rule on productivity to discovering you why. If you are not a reader, I would suggest downloading the audio book when available as an alternative. I have learned that if I keep doing things the way I have always done them, I will most likely keep getting the same results. So, if I want better results, I have to learn how others succeeded and follow their lead. Being open to new ideas and learning from others is the best way to take your business and vision to the next level. Here’s to much success!
- Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to take Action – this is one of my favorite books because it gets to the core of all our businesses – why do we do what we do. “People like Martin Luther King Jr., Steve Jobs, and the Wright Brothers might have (one) little in common, …they all started with why” (Amazon Author Page).
- 80/20 Sales and Marketing: The Definitive Guide to Working Less and Making More – Who doesn’t to work less and make more? Perry Marshall is one of the world leaders in productivity, sales and marketing. In this book he demonstrates how to apply the 80/20 principle in marketing our businesses. Perry has several great books and an informative email newsletter that I would recommend subscribing to as well.
- The Irresistible Offer: How to Sell Your Product or Service in 3 Seconds or Less – Mark Joyner was one of the first authors I started reading when I went back to school to update my degree. It was recommended to me by one of my professors who is a leader in the web marketing field. In a rapid moving world, we only have a couple of seconds to get someones attention – this book helps us craft irresistible offers that grab a visitors attention and make a sale.
- Epic Content Marketing – Joe is one of my favorites when it comes to learning how to tell a compelling story for online marketing. This book really is EPIC! I would also recommend Joe’s podcast with Robert Rose called “This Old Marketing” to keep up on the latest content trends. MAKE NO MISTAKE – you MUST begin with compelling content or the rest is just won’t matter.
COMING SOON – Building a Better Brand
These links will all have to do with building and establishing your own brand. Until I get those posted, you can begin by reading my blog post on “Investing in Your Brand” for Small Businesses.