MINNEAPOLIS (Oct. 14, 2008)– Winmark Business Solutions, an online small business resource center that provides entrepreneurs and small business owners with a wealth of free business management tools and small business information, today announced the launch of its newly redesigned site, www.wbsonline.com, enhanced with the latest social networking functionalities to provide users with an interactive and personalized experience.
“There are more than 24 million small businesses in this country that are underserved with their business needs,” said Steve Murphy, Winmark Corporation president of franchising. “The mission of Winmark Business Solutions is simply to give away a wealth of information that helps small business owners and entrepreneurs to succeed, and provide site users with the initial framework to help them form an online community. Then, we’ll step back and let the community tell us what they want and need from the site.”
Murphy noted that the overall site design is clean and free of banner ads or promotional sponsorships, and that small business consultants who have previewed the site are thrilled with the site’s offerings and its non-commercial design. And they’re particularly impressed that the site’s content and services are free.
Key features of the new Winmark Business Solutions online small business resource center include:
– Resource Guide with more than 6,000 pages of small business information including how-to articles, as well as templates for plans, forms, spreadsheets, contracts, and more.
– PeerSphereâ„¢ business networking groups, which not only enable users to assemble their own professional networks and share information with each other, but also enables users in related industries to make their business information visible to others who are searching for the services they offer.
– Discussion forum where users can post questions, share information, and rate articles and contributors.
– Small Business Polls and surveys that are updated regularly.
– Preferred vendor discounts of up to 50 percent on business services such as insurance, security, office supplies, copying services, and more.
– Monthly e-Newsletter with the useful information on the latest small business trends, issues, regulations and more. The newsletter is delivered via e-mail in an html design format.
Users must register with the site to form and participate in the PeerSphere community, contribute to discussion forums, and participate in discussions and poll rankings.
According to Murphy, Winmark has decades of experience working with nearly 900 small businesses across the country through its Play It Again Sports®, Once Upon A Child®, Plato’s Closet® and Music Go Round® retail franchise operations, and its Wirth Business Credit® franchises, which focus on providing financing services for small businesses.
“We have been working directly with small business owners for 25 years. We understand their needs and the challenges they face, and we are committed to providing them with the tools and resources they need to grow and thrive, regardless of their affiliation with us,” Murphy said.
Winmark launched its original site www.wbsonline.com site in 2004 as a resource for its franchisees, who frequently requested information to help plan and manage their businesses. The company licensed an extensive selection of information and posted it online for its franchisees to easily access. Then, the company went a step further and made the information and its preferred vendor discounts available to all entrepreneurs and small business owners. It has since become a valued resource by those starting small businesses and seasoned business owners alike.
About Winmark Corporation®
Winmark Corporation, based in Minneapolis, creates, supports and finances business. Specializing in leasing and developing franchises for retail stores that buy, sell, and trade new and quality used merchandise, it is the parent company of Play It Again Sports, Once Upon A Child, Plato’s Closet, Music Go Round, Wirth Business Credit, and Winmark Capital®. Winmark has more than 850 franchise locations and is publicly traded at (NASDAQ=WINA). For more information, visit www.winmarkcorporation.com.