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Small Business Software Tools: Computer Programs that Can Help with Efficiency and Effectiveness

Small Business Software Tools: Computer Programs that Can Help with Efficiency and Effectiveness

Small businesses range in size from one single entrepreneur to a company with 250 employees. Regardless of the size of a small company, most everyone relies on computers and software to help manage. Recently PCWorld magazine listed the 20 best business software and web tools […]

Pre-Paid Legal Small Business Opportunity: Pyramid or Legit MLM?

Pre-Paid Legal Small Business Opportunity: Pyramid or Legit MLM?

Pre-Paid Legal is a network marketing company that specializes in the sale of legal services, which its representatives sell as legal insurance as clients can have attorneys on call by paying monthly premiums at varying rates. There are two ways that people interested in this […]

Barack Obama Targets Small Business on the Campaign Trail

Barack Obama Targets Small Business on the Campaign Trail

Barack Obama will extol his economic policies to small business during the recession in the final week of the 2010 Mid Term Election campaign.

He plans to visit American Cord & Webbing Co, a manufacturer of cords and buckles, in Rhode Island according to Kevin Bogardus’ article “A week to go before election, Obama, Biden to campaign across country” in The Hill.

Obama is keen to win support from business, and will point to the Small Business Jobs Act that he signed in.

 The manufacturing company was one of the beneficiaries of the act, and has saved more than $9000 in fee waivers for the Small Business Administration Loans that they received. They will also benefit from eight fresh tax cuts for small business that were also included in the legislation.

Obama hopes that his message to small business will remind them of his actions to prop them up during the recession, and confirm his future support for them providing a clear choice away from the GOP approach as the Republicans opposed the bill.

Former President Bill Clinton had voiced his concerns that the Democratic campaign has not communicated a clear and coherent message on the economy, and it now looks like Obama has heeded his advice.

Voters Think Media Has Become More Partisan says Opinion Poll

In a poll carried out by The Hill, 51% of respondents have said that the media since 2005 has become more biased towards both the Democrats and the Republicans.

Out of that statistic 30% thought that the media favoured the Democrats, 21% believed that the Republican’s received the most opinionated reporting, and 30% said that parochial reporting had remained the same.

Amongst men and women in all age groups, they opined that biased has increased towards the Democrats, but black and Hispanic voters did not agree and said that they thought the press has moved to the right.

On the contrary 46% of Republican voters said that the press has moved leftwards, compared to 32% of Democrats who ascertained that the media has shifted to the right.

The majority of independents thought that the press has moved left rather than to the right, with 31% of those surveyed saying that the Democrats receive more biased press compared to 22% for the Republicans.

Real Clear Politics Says Republicans to Win More Governor Races

The GOP are set to be celebrating the most Governor’s according to the latest polling from Real Clear Politics.

The Republicans are projected to have 27 Governor’s after the mid term elections, compared to 15 for the Democrats including the states where no election is taking place.

There are eight states where the race for the Governorships remain a toss up, but out of those eight five of them are currently held by Republicans in Florida, Hawaii, Minnesota, Rhode Island and Vermont, with three of them by Democrats in Illinois, Ohio and Oregon.

The results of the Governor elections are sure to bring an about turn from the current tally, where the Democrats have a slender 26-24 advantage.

In the Senate the Democrats are predicted to have 48 seats, compared with 44 seats for the Republicans with 8 toss ups after the 37 Senate 2010 elections are decided. Meanwhile in the House the Republicans are projected 222 seats, with the Democrats on 177 with 36 toss ups where the result is too close to call.

Ideas for Helping Small Businesses Do Better: Struggling Business Advice

Ideas for Helping Small Businesses Do Better: Struggling Business Advice

Many small business owners who manage to eke out just enough money to keep the business running are constantly stressed and worried. Sometimes, it wouldn’t take much for them to begin to do better financially, but they are so overwhelmed that they can’t see what […]

Good Staff Recruitment for Small Business Owners: Shortcuts in Recruitment and Selection Lead to Staff Problems Later.

Good Staff Recruitment for Small Business Owners: Shortcuts in Recruitment and Selection Lead to Staff Problems Later.

Big business and government bodies have a personnel management section, middle-sized companies often rely on recruitment agencies, but small business owners, corner shopkeepers, sole operators and tradesmen usually go it alone when the time comes to find good staff. Small Business Owners’ Reluctance to Interview […]

Internet Economy has Created Several New Businesses

Internet Economy has Created Several New Businesses

Internet commerce needs infrastructure like an Internet backbone and Internet Service Providers (ISPS); applications like shopping cart software and payment gateways; online stores that sell over the Web; and intermediaries who facilitate Internet businesses.

Major Components of the Internet Economy

A University of Minnesota online course on Electronic Commerce lists the major components of an Internet economy as follows:

  • Infrastructure: Internet backbone, ISPs, networking hardware and software, PC and server makers, security vendors
  • Applications: Web development software, Web-enabled databases, e commerce software, search engines, multimedia applications, consultants, online training
  • Intermediaries: Market makers, online brokerages, content aggregators, portals, ad brokers
  • Commerce: E-tailers, manufacturers selling online, fee/subscription services, airlines selling tickets online, online entertainment and professional services

The Internet economy has also given rise to new skill requirements such as Web analytics skills to identify website visitor behavior patterns and search engine/social media marketing skills.

 Electronic Commerce and Economic Globalization

Electronic commerce and other e-business applications such as CRM and SCM have helped economic globalization in a major way. In addition to making it possible to sell easily over the Web, it is now possible to offer greatly improved (and customized) customer services and integrate global vendor systems into a business’ own systems to improve productivity and reduce costs.

Economic globalization as we see it now would have been inconceivable without the Internet. Internet commerce has helped achieve huge increases in trade volumes, with resultant improvement in the living standards of people all over the world.

Opportunities for Internet Business

A clear idea about the Internet economy can help prospective businesspersons identify business opportunities. In fact, numerous small businesspersons are making good money with little investment by acting as intermediaries. For example, an online retailer can operate with absolutely no merchandise by passing on all orders received to manufacturers or wholesalers with whom the retailer has a working arrangement.

Offer comparison websites constitute another major business. Online travel agents, for example, can offer comparisons of the fares offered by different airlines and the features of each offer, allowing customers to choose the offer that meets their requirements best.

Pure content websites that do not sell any product are also able to make money by displaying relevant advertisements on their information pages. Web surfers who land on the pages in search of the specific information are likely to be interested in the products related to the topic. What this means is that web surfers get valuable information free and sellers of products are able to reach precisely targeted prospects.

Internet has created an entire economy with players engaged in providing different products and services that make Internet business and e commerce possible. The Internet has also facilitated global trading, leading to huge increase in trade volumes and improvement in the living standards of people. Finally, it has created business opportunities for persons who might otherwise have been unable to earn a meaningful income doing what they are competent to do.

Advice to Small Businesses – Protect Data: Losing a Computer or Computer Data Costs Profit and More

Advice to Small Businesses – Protect Data: Losing a Computer or Computer Data Costs Profit and More

Losing a computer either physically or virtually through data loss can be catastrophic to one’s business. Think about the business financial records, client data, and personal information stored on most worker’s computers. A business is severely handicapped if that data is irretrievably lost for whatever […]

Small Business Plan Template For Strategic Planning Management

Small Business Plan Template For Strategic Planning Management

A small business plan template, provided by the Service Corps of Retired Executives (SCORE) can be extremely helpful for an established business that is in need of strategic planning and management for a new project. This business plan sample includes an executive summary and financial […]

Small Business Using Internet as Road to Economic Recovery

Small Business Using Internet as Road to Economic Recovery

The Internet is providing a lifeline to small businesses, with 79 per cent of those questioned saying that it is making the road to recovery easier this time round than in previous recessions according to a new report released by internet service provider, Easynet Connect.

The Internet has clearly become an integral part of most strategies, with 81 per cent estimating that they could not cope any longer than a day without it, and of that group 48 per cent unable to last longer than an hour, 29 per cent no longer than 30 minutes, and 14 per cent unable to cope at all without the Internet.

Small Business and Computing Systems

Despite the recession, small companies are also looking to invest in computing systems – providing opportunities for small business software manufacturers. Over a third of those asked in the survey (38 per cent) are investing in their IT infrastructure, while 30 per cent are looking at increasing staff training, and around 15 per cent are looking at recruiting more people and improving staff retention.

This investment in small business software is considerably greater than other areas of investment by small businesses. For example, lower down the list of priorities is launching new products and entering new markets (21 per cent) and increasing marketing spend (14 per cent). All of these measures suggest that businesses are concentrating on improving in-house processes, ensuring they are as efficient and productive as possible when growth returns.

In a press statement accompanying the survey, Chris Stening, managing director of Easynet Connect, said: “The predominant sentiment among small to medium-sized firms seems to be one of ‘cautious optimism’. Earlier this year we found that 2010 would be the year SMEs embraced cloud computing.

Small Business Looks to Cloud Computing

“With most small-to-medium businesses not expecting growth this year, we can see that this spend on cloud computing, as with investment in other aspects of IT, training, and recruitment is all part of the strategy to future-proof their business in preparation for growth and beyond,” he added. “In contrast to previous downturns, the Internet increasingly lies at the core of small businesses’ operations – from marketing their products, conducting research, collaborating with colleagues or providing access to significantly better value cloud computing software and services.”

Scaling up is also very important, believes Stening. “Small businesses need to ensure their Internet capabilities – essentially the very heart of their business – can scale with them,” he said. “For many, fibre connections, with their ability to scale far beyond their current 100 Mbps speeds in the future, are proving to be the cost-effective solution to this problem.”

Research from the UK’s Federation of Small Businesses released as part of its Voice of Small Business survey found that 24 per cent of respondents were dissatisfied with their broadband service. Of those small firms that are dissatisfied, 63 per cent said they are unhappy with the speed and reliability of their internet connection supplied by their service provider.

When recession bites, it’s always tempting to cut investment along with other expenditure but this research suggests that SMEs are looking to the long term by making investments now in time for when the economy improves.

Every Small Business Needs a Business Plan: Establish Goals and How to Reach Them with a Detailed Business Plan

Every Small Business Needs a Business Plan: Establish Goals and How to Reach Them with a Detailed Business Plan

No matter what the business, product or service, a business plan is essential for any small business. A business plan helps determine strengths, weaknesses, competitive edge, growth objectives and financing. Every small business needs a plan. Start with a Business Plan Summary In two to […]