September 21, 2014

Still More New Products and Opportunities This Small Business Week

Small business woman at work

Wow!  What a lot of new products, information, tips, services and opportunities have been shared this week. To try to cover as many as possible, we’re doing edition two of National Small Business Week announcements.   (See the first edition of Small Business Week announcements here).

Let’s kick this one off with a statistic we hope you will not follow this year:

Fewer business owners taking vacation. It seems like every year we report that fewer business owners plan to take a vacation of at least one week long. Per the American Express OPEN Spring 2013 Small Business Monitor, only 49% plan a one-week vacation. What a shame.

6th Annual Small Business Superhero Contest. Batchbook CRM is holding its 6th annual contest for small businesses. Three small businesses will win makeover prizes consisting of donated products and services by vendors that focus on small businesses. Says Batchbook, “It really does take a superhero to run a small business!” Enter here.

New franchise jobs report. The franchise industry is important in the world of small business.  A  small but steady portion of entrepreneurs choose to buy a franchise for their next business – versus starting one from scratch. ADP is now recognizing the importance of franchising through its brand new Franchise Jobs Report. For the first report, ADP says 19,160 franchise jobs were added in May 2013. The report is based on ADP’s actual employment data.

New marketplace to shop for app development services. ContactIQ announces a new marketplace. Founder Ashwin Ramasamy likens the new marketplace to Angie’s List.  But instead of local service providers, Ramasamy says small business owners can find app development shops for their projects.

Loans for businesses in low-income areas. The Opportunity Finance Network, a national network of micro-lenders, reminded small businesses and entrepreneurs this week of financing available in low-income communities. Money is available through community development financial institutions, or CDFIs.

A lot has changed in 5 years. According to a new survey by Constant Contact, 51% say supporting local businesses is important. So if your business primarily gets its customers locally, that’s good news. But … waiting for the other shoe to drop …. 49% say it’s harder to keep up with technology; while 40% say there’s more direct competition than 5 years ago. Ouch.

New cloud and hosting solutions offered. Media Temple announce two new products this week. One is the latest version of DV Managed. The company describes it as a platform offering affordable hosting to small business. Another is CloudTech Premium Support, a technical services platform for its small business users.

Vendors and suppliers to small businesses — good news. According to a Q1 study by BizBuySell.com, business purchase and sale transactions are trending 56% above 2012 levels. BizBuySell estimates that could translate into as much as $52 billion pumped into vendors and suppliers that sell products and services to small businesses in 2013.

Small business marketing hub launched. Vistaprint launched a new small-business marketing site called Owner Nation. The site offers advice and videos, organized under Branding Basics, Practical Promotion and Insider Inspiration categories. The company also announced a partnership with SCORE.

New small business app offers a way to work on the road. Neat, a maker of digital filing systems for mobile, desktop and the cloud is announcing a new app the company says will allow “road warriors” to create expense reports with receipts captured on their mobile devices or stored in the Neat Cloud Digital Filing System.

 

Shutterstock: Small businesswoman

5 Comments ▼

5 Reactions

  1. Business owners: Take a vacation! You’ll thank me later ;)

    • Yes, a vacation helps you accomplish so much more when you come back.

      To me it’s like writing late at night. When I find it’s taking me forever to a write a paragraph, I know I’m too burned out to be effective. If I get up earlier than usual, come back in the morning, and write it — I get it done much faster.

      Same concept with vacations. You may be burned out and less effective, without even realizing it.

      – Anita

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