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:: Small Business Websites Get On The Map With Google Places

12/01/2010
Only the first seven results in Google Places are shown on a specific search and, since the service is free, there is ample opportunity to not only get listed, but to break into the top seven.

more on Google Places

:: Taking Stock of Small Business Saturday

11/30/2010
The very first Small Business Saturday, courtesy of the branding folks at American Express, is over. So did it do as it intended and lure more shoppers into the privately-run boutiques, the mom-and-pop stores, the independent non-big box retailers? Judging from a review of local stories from various publications around the country, the answer is resounding meh.

complete article

:: Twitter is Not for Sale

11/29/2010
Twitter co-founder Biz Stone said today that even if the company was offered $4 billion or $5 billion, it is still not ready to be sold.

:: Enticing Purchasers - Closing the Sale

11/25/2010
Compelling customers to take the final step from browsing to purchasing is not always an easy transition. Marketers and entrepreneurs who have studied purchasing habits have found that the following enticements can help encourage potential customers to take the final step to purchase...

Enticing Purchasers - Closing the Sale

:: Small Business Facts

11/24/2010
Small business is the lifeline of our local economies. Small businesses have generated 60 to 80 percent of net new jobs annually over the last decade; and represent 99.7 percent of all employer firms (according to the SBA). In fact, for every $100 spent in locally-owned, independent stores, $68 returns to the community through local taxes, payroll and other expenditures.

Small Business Facts

:: Small Business Struggles

11/23/2010
When the economy struggles, small businesses are often hit the hardest.

Only about half of small businesses survive for at least five years.

Small Business Struggles

:: Branding Your Small Business

11/22/2010
Branding your small business is crucial, especially in the current economy. But with so many means of communication these days and social networks on the rise, it’s hard to figure out the most effective strategy.

Branding Your Small Business

:: How to Network Effectively

11/17/2010
Making connections and maintaining relationships with the people who support you throughout your career can be the key to success for most individuals. By effectively building a network of colleagues, business associates and more, you are ensuring that whenever you need a new client, a new job, or to develop your skills further, you can call upon your network to help you.

Networking is perhaps more crucial than ever, as an established relationship can make you stand out against the competition.

How to Network Effectively

:: Tools for Employee Reviews

11/16/2010
Evaluating an employee's performance is not easy, but it can be a valuable process for both of you. Providing feedback to your employees is important because it is an opportunity for you to give and receive constructive criticism.

There is not a one-size-fits-all model for reviews. The different types of employee reviews include top-down, peer, 360-degree, and self-assessment.  You have to determine which type or combination of types works best for your business.

The timing of your reviews will also affect which kind of review you choose. The type of review you do for a new hire after their first 90 days will not necessarily be the same as the annual review of an employee.

Tools for Employee Reviews

:: Be Passionate is Bad Advice

11/15/2010
As you ask yourself each question, do not let your passion blind you into being a foolish idealist—otherwise you will be headed to the bank that gives you food stamps, not cash. Be a pessimist and your business will be better as a result.

complete article

:: Off Page Web Optimization

11/10/2010
Webmasters have far less control over the off-page optimization factors than they do the on-page optimization factors. Off-page optimization does, however, influence how a website ranks in search results, so it should not be ignored.

Use the following off-page optimization techniques to improve your website search engine ranking:

1. Keywords In Incoming Links

The anchor text used to link to the web page should contain important keywords or keyword phrases. The linking text is viewed as contextual by search engines.

complete article

:: 10 Things Every Small-Business Website Needs

11/09/2010
The Web is full of horrendous sites, and we're not just talking about bad design. There are many other elements besides how your website looks that go into making it customer-friendly -- not to mention something that inspires them to actually do business with you.

From thorough contact information to customer testimonials, here are the essentials that every small business website should have for it to effectively help you do business.

complete article

:: Data Loss is a Growing Concern of Small Businesses

11/08/2010
While viruses and trojans continue to be of concern for small businesses, data loss, through malware and data leaks, is a growing worry for small firms, a survey by Trend Micro found.

According to the survey, 63% of small businesses were most concerned by viruses, 60% by trojans, 59% by data-stealing malware, followed, at 56%, by data leaks. Data leaks were defined as the intentional or unintentional disclosure of sensitive information outside the corporate network. Phishing scams and spam were of less concern to small businesses.

complete article

:: Uncertainty Strangles Small Businesses

10/28/2010
Businesses require two critical ingredients in order to expand and succeed: a clear understanding of what their costs are going to be, and access to capital. The current political and regulatory environment leaves them void of both.

When companies, it does not matter if it is a mom-and-pop operation or multi-national corporation, face uncertainty, they all do the same thing: nothing. Or, at least as little as possible when it comes to spending money. It is the reason trillions of dollars are currently sitting in corporate bank accounts; and unless its a bank, that is not what a company should do with its excess cash. Companies are supposed to invest it in the business in order to develop new or better products or services, increase its earnings and hire more employees.

Uncertainty Strangles Small Businesses

:: Social Media and Small Businesses

10/27/2010
Never doubt the power of social media. In Todays Living, Twitter and Facebook, the new face of business and advertising.

A growing number of small business owners are finding word of mouth advertising on the web is allowing them to go global.

It does not get more local than this: a 30-minute photo shop in Irvine, California same storefront since 1990. But this is an international enterprise now.

complete article

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