Small Business Resource Center

What Every Small Business Needs to Know This Year

What Every Business Needs to Know

Originally posted at StatePoint.

For small businesses, adapting to the changing times is crucial. Periodically, it’s important to review what’s working and where there’s room to transform.

“The new year is a blank slate for small businesses, offering the opportunity to streamline everything from connecting with customers to cash flow management,” says Tim Carroll, vice president of small business engagement at Deluxe Corporation.

With this in mind, here are resolutions for small businesses to succeed in 2014.

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[Free Webinar] How to Get Started in Social Media

 

Social Media 101 Full SizeFree Webinar: How to Get Started in Social Media.  Access it Here!

Still exploring how social media can help your business?  Please listen to our free webinar, geared to help you weed through the seemingly endless choices and help you focus on the most effective (and affordable) ways to market what you do.

In this session, you’ll learn:

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Startup Seven Sundays Hits Target Shelves Today

Seven SundaysAfter returning from a trip to New Zealand and experiencing how muesli played such an important role in breakfast, Hannah and Brady Barnstable have been on a mission to change the way we think about our morning meal here in the U.S.  Their company, Seven Sundays, has built a steady presence in the Minneapolis area, first showing up at local farmers’ markets, outdoor events and a few select health-food stores.

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Need More People to Find You Online? Claim Your Google Places Listing

Google Places for Business

The power of Google is a given, especially when it comes to helping people search for businesses locally.  With over 80% of potential buyers searching online for information about products and services, it’s vital to take steps to elbow your way on to the first page of search results.

One simple (and natural) way to move ahead is to claim your Google Places for Business listing.  In addition to setting up your Google+ profile, taking the time to fill in key information about your business on Google Places gives you a better shot at showing up in the maps listing below.

Google Maps Page

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[Free Webinar] Get Started with Email Marketing in the Social Age

BFree Webinar: Get Started with Email Marketing. Access it here!

Email marketing delivers some of the highest returns on investment for businesses looking to generate more sales online. Statistics show that for every dollar invested, $45 is returned.  If your business is ready to launch an email marketing program, this webinar is a perfect start. We’ll cover the basics, but also go beyond and share ideas on how to intertwine your email and social strategies to get even stronger results.

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Branding Your Business: See How Easy It Can Be

When thinking about how to share your brand story, the first thing to consider is how customers think about your company. Establishing a strong brand in the eyes of your current and potential customers allows you to build trust and set yourself apart from competitors.

Deluxe brand expert, Terri Shapiro, shares her thoughts on how business owners should dig deep into learning how their customers approach buying decisions — and embed that knowledge into how they build their brand story.

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7 Tips to Keep Your Small Business Fraud-free in 2015

seven-tips-help-prevent-fraudEven if 2014 was a banner year for your small business, you can’t afford to fall victim to fraud in 2015. An infographic from the Association for Certified Fraud Examiners provides startling perspective on the costs of fraud to a business: the median cost for a single instance of fraud is $145,000, and nearly a quarter of all fraud incidents cost the affected company more than $1 million. The organization surveyed companies around the world and respondents estimated that a typical business loses 5% of its revenue to fraud each year.

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[Infographic] Anatomy of An Effective Business Website

Valparaiso Animal Hospital WebsiteWith over 80% of consumers searching online for information about products and services, it’s essential to have an easy-to-find, easy-to-use business website.  And since building an effective website is a little like building a house, having a plan for what your website will contain is a must. 

We’ve rounded up the top 8 tips to get you started:

  1. Design for the people you want to reach
  2. Use relevant keywords
  3. Include multiple points of contact
  4. Maintain a consistent look and feel
  5. Make navigation easy
  6. Ensure the site loads quickly
  7. Include content that builds credibility
  8. Build social media sharing 

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Using B2B Affiliate Marketing to Supplement Your Niche Business Income

Affiliate MarketingMy son told a joke the other day.  And, being the consummate professional that I am, it immediately made me think of work. The joke went like this:  “What’s green and smells like red paint?”

The answer = Green Paint.

My son, who is much older than you might think based on the quality of his jokes, went on to tell a few others in the same vein. What struck me about the joke was the confusing simplicity of it. Before I was told the answer, I had twisted my brain seven ways to Sunday, trying to think of what could possibly be green… but smell like red paint.  Green paint never occurred to me.

What this green paint joke made me realize is that I am not alone in trying my hardest to make things more complicated than they need to be.  It then occurred to me that this same issue applies in how to connect niche businesses with B2B Affiliate marketing.

“What’s niche marketing and is focused on the B2B market?”

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The Cheese Story

Wedge and Wheel

Like many new start-ups, Chris Kohtz had a passion to do something really special.  Inspired after a trip to England a few years ago – where over 700 different cheeses are produced – Chris put his energy into studying about the industry and connecting with like-minded cheese enthusiasts across the world.

His dream?  To open a gourmet cheese shop where local residents would have the opportunity to taste the extraordinary flavors of cheeses from around the world, as well as from nearby farms.

He opened the doors on January 2, 2014 – literally a New Year’s business.  Although the first week saw record cold temperatures, his shop had a constant stream of locals, curious to see what this new store had to offer.

With nearly 500 Facebook followers and several media calls, Chris is well on his way getting out the word. Please join us as we continue to follow his 1st-year journey of The Wedge and Wheel!