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:: Pirated Software a Risk for Small Businesses

Small and medium-sized companies may be overlooking potential business risks from using unlicensed software, which may add up to as much as $40,000 in damages a year, the latest study done for Microsoft by the International Data Corporation, or IDC, suggests.

Small and medium-sized businesses are accustomed to linking the use of pirated software with exclusively legal responsibility, which, though relatively rare, can be quite harsh in Russia (fines and possible imprisonment), but they often overlook the financial losses they may incur from using such software.

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:: Small Business Legal Tips

Though the legal side of your business may not necessarily involve making money or expanding your client or customer base, mistakes can certainly cost you money thus threatening even a profitable business if the errors are particularly costly. Here is the latest from around the Web of legal tips you may want to consider to protect your small business today and in the future.

Small Business Legal Tips

:: Fine Points of S Corporations

Since 1997, S corporations have been the most popular form of corporate tax return filed with the IRS. Over 3 million U.S. companies that are defined as small businesses elect S corporation status on IRS Form 2553 instead of filing their income tax returns as standard C corporations.

There are many benefits to S corporation tax treatment. Like standard C corporations, S corporations shield owners personal assets from unpaid debts, provided they are not personally guaranteed and other business liabilities. With the exception of taxes on certain capital gains and passive income, an S corporation  is exempt from federal income tax. This means that most S corporation profits and losses are  passed through to the individual shareholders, just like a sole proprietorship.

S Corporations

:: New Social Media Rules

Social media is coming into its own as a tool for networking and marketing in small business and larger brands a like. Beginning with blogs and moving into the rapidly expanding worlds of Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and more there is a lot to learn AND a lot to be gained, so log on and enjoy!

First, avoid these social media mistakes.

:: The Best and Worst States for Small-Business Taxes

High corporate income taxes or sales taxes can be a huge challenge for small businesses, depending on where they are located. So where does your state stack up?

Location, location, location: It is not only important when it comes to where you live or where you set up shop -- it affects the taxes you pay on business profits, the sales taxes your customers pay and the property taxes you pay on your facilities directly as a property owner or indirectly through rent.

So how does your location compare with other states?

:: How to Submit Podcast to iTunes

Here are some helpful tips regarding how to get your podcasts listed in the iTunes Music Store...

iTunes Compatibility

In order to have your podcast included in the iTunes Music Store, you must first add the iTunes extension to your RSS feed.

How to Submit Podcast to iTunes

:: Turn Your Hobby Into a Business

Each year thousands of Americans take the leap to starting a business to leverage their expertise and passion for a particular interest or hobby.

Here are some tips for turning your hobby into a business from

Get free help. Trial and error is an essential part of the entrepreneurial experience. Tapping the experience of seasoned business professionals can help you avoid mistakes, and provide you perspective in times of stress.

Write a business plan. A business plan gives you and others a clear idea of your goals, the processes you will implement to achieve those goals and how you will measure your success.

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:: Protecting You and Your Assets

One of the main reasons any entrepreneur chooses to incorporate his or her business is to protect or shield the founders and corporate officers’ personal assets including cars, homes, savings accounts, vacation homes, etc. from potential unpaid business debts, liability issues and other costly business dealings.

This protection, as it is typically called is a corporate veil, and is designed to safeguard the things you have already worked so hard to earn as your business grows and flourishes.

What you need to make sure you understand is that the corporate veil remains in effective only if the corporation remains in good standing by meeting all of its corporate duties as described in your incorporation documents and state requirements.

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:: Free Press Release Submissions

Huge list of 72 Free Press Release Submission Sites.

:: Small Businesses Should Export

If you want to find customers, I have got a number for you to remember: 95.

That is the percentage of all the world's customers who live outside the United States. Yes, the largest market is outside our borders, and you need to look beyond the border as well to get a piece of this huge market.

Fortunately, small business owners can get help to take the financial risk out of exporting.

complete article

:: Small Business Branding

What is your brand? Branding in small business can be the key to success. When marketing globally or locally, branding sets you apart. But there is much more to establishing a brand for yourself or your business than might at first meet the eye. In a world of infinite choices, it is one of the most important ways you can distinguish your business or yourself as an entrepreneur. Let the following roundup be your guide to the art and science branding for your small business.

Small Business Branding

:: Survey Evaluates Small Business Hiring

The Wells Fargo-Gallup Small Business Index survey also found a split in whether those small businesses were hiring as many employees as they needed and a variety of reasons influencing why businesses decided not to hire workers.

Conducted in November, the poll showed that 48 percent of small businesses that hired brought on the number of employees they needed, with another 9 percent hiring more than was immediately necessary.

On the flip side, 42 percent of the hiring businesses took on fewer workers than desired. Those businesses cited worries about cash flow and a lack of qualified candidates as among the reasons they decided to not hire as much.

:: IRS Publishes More Info for Small Businesses on Healthcare

The Internal Revenue Service has released final guidance for small employers eligible to claim the new small business health care tax credit for the 2010 tax year.  Included in the release is a one-page form and instructions small employers will use to claim the credit for the 2010 tax year.

New Form 8941, Credit for Small Employer Health Insurance Premiums, and newly revised Form 990-T are now available on The IRS also posted on its website the instructions to Form 8941 and Notice 2010-82 , both of which are designed to help small employers correctly figure and claim the credit.

:: Professional PowerPoint Layouts

Need to do a professional PowerPoint Presentation? Check out these professional PowerPoint Backgrounds and Layouts.

:: 25 Predictions for Small Businesses This Spring

Here, 25 small business owners share their spring predictions with BusinessNewsDaily.

:: Resolve to Grow Your Business

10 Tips For Growing Your Business

1. Manage Accounts Receivable

Be courteous, but firm with customers. Most small businesses do not have the cash flow that allows the luxury of providing lines of credit to their customers. Track accounts receivables closely, and follow-up on past due accounts.

Resolve to Grow Your Business

:: Have You Considered Exporting?

Top U.S. trade officials plan to spread out across the country this year to recruit small-business owners in the administrations effort to double exports by 2015.

A year after President Barack Obama announced the export initiative to help tackle stubbornly high unemployment, the administration is trying to reach out to the group of business owners that account for nearly two-thirds of job creation but less than a third of total goods sold abroad.

Government to Urge Exporting

:: 4 Biggest Mistakes Small Businesses Make With Social Media

Hate to disappoint, but Facebook, Twitter, blogs and other social media tools are not magical. They are communication tools and communication is hard work. Connecting with your customers on a deep and emotional level can pay off big time for all businesses, but it can also backfire.

4 Biggest Mistakes Small Businesses Make With Social Media

:: Forum Etiquette

The Internet has become a highly interactive medium. In order to participate in discussion forums and newsgroups, it is important to be familiar with standard and accepted Internet forum etiquette. Here are some tips to help make your forum participation more productive and beneficial...

1. Terms-Of-Service

Read the forum rules and terms-of-service before you begin posting. This way, you can avoid having your introduction to the forum being an accidental breaking of a rule or other misconduct.

Forum Etiquette

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