5 Signs It is Time to Close up Shop on Your Small Business

can be a difficult decision to close a small business, but in some
circumstances, it is a decision that has to be made. The following are
five signs that it may be time to close your small business.

1. You are losing money, and the amount you are losing is steadily increasing.

is not uncommon for businesses to have slow periods or to occasionally
take a loss, but if the amount that you are losing is increasing it may
be time to look over your business strategy and determine if it is
possible to lower your losses. If you cannot find a way to lower or stop
your losses, your business will eventually become valueless.

2. Your sales have been continually slowing.

are several ways a business can manage its debts and maintain
operations when it is not making many sales, but if you are seeing your
sales steadily decrease, that can be a sign that your business is
slowing down. You will need to determine if your slowdown is temporary
or the beginning of the end for your business.

3. You have an increasing debt-to-asset ratio.

high debt-to-asset ratio does not necessarily signify the end of a
business, and some industries tend to have high debt-to-asset ratios. If
your debt-to asset ratio is high for your industry, it can signify a
problem. A high debt-to-asset ratio can affect the amount of flexibility
your business has and lower your ability to gain credit, which can lead
to the end of a business.

4. You cannot get a line of credit for your business.

will often extend a line of credit to a small business owner, but if
they feel there are problems with the business, they may stop the line
of credit. Businesses generally need money to maintain equipment, to pay
employees, and to purchase inventory. Even if you are able to pay your
expenses without credit, you may not be capable of improving your
business or covering emergency situations if they arise.

5. You no longer enjoy what you are doing.

is not a way to place a monetary value on happiness, but the way you
feel about what you are doing can affect how you perform mentally and
physically. When the thought of doing things for your business depresses
you, it may be time to walk away.

Jump Starting a Small Business With Kickstarter

your small business thinks it has the next great idea, but you need
some funding to get the project off the ground, Kickstarter might be for

is a crowd-funding website that lets entrepreneurs and business owners
showcase their next great product and convince customers to buy into it.
Of course, by essentially investing in the project, the customers, or
kickstarters, receive everything from a thank you from the inventor for
low contributions and the product itself for higher contributions.

Think of the television show Shark Tank, except the only investors you have to impress are actual customers.

recently released some statistics showing how effective crowd-funding
on the site really is. To day, the New York-based company has received
pledges of $261 million off 60,786 projects. Of those 60,000+ projects,
44 percent have been successfully funded, meaning the entrepreneur
reached his or her goal going into the process.

“We’re big fans
of numbers here at Kickstarter and we’ve shared many Kickstarter stats
and trends on this blog,” co-founder Yancey Strickler wrote on the
company’s blog. “Those posts have typically been tied to milestones, but
we’ve always wanted a way to share our numbers consistently.”

site is now pledging more transparency to help the public understand
how effective of a tool it can be for small businesses and

Projects on Kickstarter range from technology to
design to music endeavors. There are thousands currently on the site
waiting for support. If a project doesn’t meet its funding goal, all of
the money is returned to the investor.

is Kickstarter a great solution for your small business? Well if you
have a project that you’ve been tooling around with that you think could
really hit it big, Kickstarter could be a great way to receive funding.
Kickstarter has a really strong online community. People that invest
have a sense of pride in not only putting their money into what they
feel is a great product, but also helping an entrepreneur along the way.

community feels compelled to tell their social networks about the
project, heightening the awareness even more. Kickstarter is essentially
a social network. Project creators send updates to their investors and
investors can easily communicate with the creator.

A perfect
example of Kickstarter’s success omes from entrepreneur Julia Hu, who
presented her invention – a vibrating wristband alarm clock – to a group
of Silicon Valley investors. After her presentation, the group was
stunned. “I mean, is this a company,” one of the investors said.
Determined to get this product off the ground, Hu went to Kickstarter
and nine months later, her product was retail-ready. It was impressive
enough to be carried in the Apple Store.

“I heard tons of ‘no’s,”
Hu told CNN Money. “The biggest challenge for a hardware company is,
unlike a software company, it takes so much more money and time to
validate a hypothesis. In terms of an investment decision, it’s just a
very different one.”

Hu added that Kickstarter is essentially a
large pre-order list for your product. If customers want it, they’re
going to get it and the business is going to truly gain some traction.

Small Business Organization Online Supporting Startups

There are some serious considerations to be made when you kick off
your startup. You need to get the ball rolling without too much of road
blocks. You need office amenities; you need office supplies,
telecommunication and internet. You need to get a lot of aspects in
order before you can have clients on board. To welcome clients, you will
need infrastructure like computers, equipments, even furniture. While
you are checking these on a must-have list, you have the financial bills
to take a look at, too. If you are shooting off the budgets you had
determined for yourself, you can no longer be able to pay for some other
necessities. Let’s face it: startups don’t have much of money to begin
with. It is only when the work starts to roll that you can get to see
the earnings on your account ledgers.

Small Business
Organization (SBO) Online is one firm that understands your predicament
in the correct sense of the term. Without claiming to be a major tour de
force that can change the way you do business, it does make a
significant contribution to your startup. A mind-boggling assortment of
services, features, offers and rebates make SBO a firm for those who
want to do serious business. It offers practically every help that you
would need to start off a business venture on your own. It has a very
flexible policy of subscription and you can join their network at any
point in time. You can talk to their executives at any time of the day.
Also, you can check out their website at sbo-online.com

take a look at the services that they provide. SBO-Online provides
subscribers with free high-speed internet! Internet is one thing that
you will definitely need, no matter what kind of business you decide to
start. SBO ensures that you have an internet connection that is nothing
short of phenomenal. The speed is excellent and so is the stability. You
can use the internet connection across the USA and even in Canada. The
internet provided by SBO-Online is very different from the usual ones
that you find. This sort of a connection would be exactly what a startup
needs to flag off the business. The internet comes with a calling card
of 500 minutes at no additional charges. To avail both of them, all you
need to do is sign up as a subscriber!

SBO Online is offering
you discounts across office retail stores in USA. You can avail the
discount coupons to purchase any office supply that you need to set up
the new office space. You can avail unbelievable discounts ranging from
35% to a staggering 75%! With the help of the office supply coupons you
can buy everything you need in an office: business machines, paper,
janitorial supplies, etc. In fact, with the help of SBO, you can avail
discounts on the entire furnishing of the office. You can have discounts
on paper and printing as well. SBO-Online is just what the doctor
ordered for startups.

The Possibilities Of Winning A Government Grant For Small Business

The recent economic recession brought plenty of negative effects to a
quite a few sectors with the business world. Small business sector one
that is affected essentially the most. Generally there are some who
totally went out of business while some initiated downsizing and
layoffs. Now that everyone is starting to recover, there are some
alternatives it is possible to test in the form of government grants for
small business.

It would be wonderful method to start by evaluating
your plan of putting up or expanding a business. Elements such as the
variety, nature and purpose of the business ought to get considered. The
location as well as the capability of your owner is also a vital
aspect. You’ll find tons of sorts of government of grants for small
business. Among the toughest parts is selecting the best type which will
match your project and objective. The goal is frequently an important
thing that really should reflect your business proposal inside the later
steps from the application. You ought to take into account that it’s
not straightforward to acquire such grants considering that they are
commonly given to those people that are highly qualified and
recommended. Government grants for small business are specially granted
to individuals business whose operation advantages a particular
community. This is mainly because these grants are originally for
nonprofit business and proposals that would involve academic,
scientific, or medical purposes. Because of this, an individual need to
asses carefully the nature with the business.

Quite a few preparations need to be made before applying for government grants for small business.
Some recommendations from critical and credible persons may possibly be
essential to increase the likelihood of obtaining approved for the
grant. The government agency proper for your software will require you
to submit several requirements that might support your application. They
typically include some documents that would show the eligibility in the
proprietor proving that he / she is really a law abiding citizen. These
will make your proposal credible enough to boost the probability of
winning the grant. The completion could be tough even before you begin
your business but as you have all of the aid that you are able to get;
there may be absolutely no harm in attempting.

Get a Small Business Website Design Quote And Find Out Your Options

If you have set up a small business or thinking of setting up a small
business, you should know there are plenty of resources available to
help you. Understanding what you can get from a small business wesite
designer is important before you actually approach one. small business
website design can include everything from website development and
support to search engine optimization and upgrades.

The Internet and worldwide web has changed a lot
about our daily lives. The way we shop, communicate, and engage in
commerce have all been dramatically shaped by the web over the past
decade or so. The web also gives persons the ability to do things that
were undreamt of just a short while ago. One person now has the ability
to do in operational terms what it took twenty or thirty persons to do
fifteen years ago. That kind of power enables individuals to do
extraordinary things, the only limits being their energy and

If you are an entrepreneur, it is important to know
that entrepreneurship is defined as directing economic resources from an
area of lower to an area of higher productivity and greater yield. In
the twenty-first century, having a website provides you with a means of
achieving this aim by giving you the capacity to connect with millions
of persons and to create new markets almost instantaneously.

you have established your business and are looking to promote your
products or services, then a small business website designer can help
you. Among the many services offered by small business website design is
search engine optimization, also known as SEO. Search engine
optimization is the ultimate front in trying to gain notoriety and
publicity in the virtual medium of the worldwide web. Nowadays, few
companies can afford not to incorporate the web in their overall
marketing strategy. Knowing the best ways of achieving search engine
optimization is vital in executing such plans and attracting online
users to your site.

a business is filled with challenges; and when you are struggling to
improve the performance of your company it can seem like a lonely fight.
But you should not worry about being isolated. A small business custom
website designer can help you plan and make the right moves in how you
use the web in your business.

Fortunately, it is not that
difficult to find a small business website designer. The place to begin
your search is the worldwide web. The web allows you to bring all of the
vendors that do small business website design to your computer screen.
It also allows you to review the services offered by each one and
evaluate the quality, value, and price of what they provide. Using the
web also enables you to find out the reputation of the firm you’re
thinking of working with. The best predictor of future performance is
past performance. A small business website designer with a proven record
of delivering high customer satisfaction is the one most likely to meet
your needs and expectations.

Proper Awareness In Applying For Government Grants for Small Business

The US government is giving out billions of dollars each year for the
section of the plan providing government grants for small business.
This is usually a perfect offer for those who are setting up to commence
their own business. Even a number of the famous brands and
organizations nowadays received government assistance when they were
still beginning.

Government grants for small business are normally
given to individuals who are arranging to get started up a small and
medium sized business, starting a nonprofit business, planning to expand
and renovate a business, planning new equipment, and arranging a
research or acquiring land. This program was developed by the government
to give likelihood to the small business sectors which are essential
towards the economy.

The secret in acquiring government grants for small business
is awareness on the way to turn, when recover work, what to do and who
must you recognize to apply. An applicant need to become aware of the
steps and needs which can be required for the software. This would
consist of knowing the documentations and paper works that are important
to get ready. Timing is also essential. As everyone knows, the
resources allotted for these grants are limited and aren’t enough to
accommodate all those who will apply. One has to notice that it s not
readily available anytime within a year and so, you have to know when it
is the finest time of applying for a grant. The other ones are the
familiarity in the government departments and places wherever you ought
to go. You wouldn’t wish to waste your cash going back and forth
determining the suitable place to submit the essential specifications.
And finally if feasible, attempt to inquire and talk to people whom you
think can give an improved chance for your software to get approved.
This way, you may be guided accordingly to avoid mistakes that would
lead to delay and failure with the software.

usually takes careful preparation to win a government grant for small
business. Try to become proactive adequate to find out the things you
have to do to improve the possible which needs to be eligible to receive
the grants.

The Fundamental Aspects of Owning a Effective Small Business

everyone might challenge to take this specific way and thus it’s
reasonable for the reason that privately owned small business needs
working totally, you need to get the job done excluding give up seven
days a week and every hour, you don’t have a place for laziness or just
lack of professionalism.

provided that the rookie businessman figures out what exactly he aims
to achieve, perceives the goal clearly and additionally is truly willing
to move through non-permanent problems and as well aggrevations which
can chase him on the beginning period of the great way to the economic
autonomy – the results running a business is almost secured. When
someone has not worked for by his own before any venture of constructing
private business venture looks like it’s unreal initially. You need to
look over quite a lot, mainly business articles to get acquainted with
the challenge.

The initial thing to do in business structure
creation is most likely the idea. To paraphrase, make sure you decide on
the type of activity that’s going to be the key concern for the
business. You will discover numerous alternate options to select and
each of these has the pros and cons for its own. Also, you ought to
properly estimate ones own real financial capabilities upon the stage of
small business building concerning the fundamental along with everyday
ones for the starting timeframe.

The main thing is not really to
assume that the venture will almost certainly pay back and generate
financial gain which may handle the day to day payments without delay.
This is an most desirable plan but it really comes to pass hardly ever
and it’s very much a nice delight than the law. Moreover, for a similar
cause you’ll need to be rather cautious concerning lent means for small
business expansion considering that important things might go a
different way as opposed to what you anticipate which means you risk to
get into the lender’s imprisonment. In the end there’ll be the expenses
for the workplace renting, workers’ wages, business furniture, devices
and additionally marketing small business.

you have came to the conclusion which kind of undertaking your
potential venture can be pre-occupied with and determined your savings
resourceswhich you would like to spend straight into the business, you
should come up with a detailed business growth plan. You must have it to
assist you to properly evaluate the viewpoints of the future
organization and get away from not comfortable circumstances, end up
being the ceo of unprofitable undertaking with great amount of debts.
You can attempt to compose this yourself, looking at a number of
business articles, or perhaps trust it to pros, although it would
require some extra cash.

When you’ve accomplished it, what
exactly is left can be to put into action all of that inside the
specific business. Besides the interest as well as desire to do the job
you’ll need understanding in a particular field you have chosen. At the
least, you’ll need to be competent in the sort of activity of your
business enterprise, regardless if it is household devices, professional
developing or perhaps legalised services. That it is a “must have”
criteria, the owner of the small business ought to know it inside out,
into the littlest detail. Exclusive in such a case the results might be
guaranteed. Also, you must know the basics of book keeping. Getting a
qualified professional financial advisor will not take care of all your
complications, personal duty and the duty for what takes place within
your small business will still be your personal issue.

Small Business Email Archiving

With the expectation that the market for enterprise email archiving
will expand in 2013 by over double the market just four years ago, with
continued expansion in following years, the urgency for small business
email archiving, just to remain competitive, will also grow.

However, small business represents challenges that
may not be answered adequately by providers such as IBM Domino (now
incorporated into IBM Notes) and Microsoft Exchange that are geared for
large enterprise installations.

Email archiving is a separate
application that is integrated with email servers such as those
mentioned above, but there are other providers of servers and client
email archive applications geared to the needs and budgets of small
business. The providers of small business email archiving still offer
real time access to archived files and security measures that will
protect the archive from unqualified access or manipulation.

There are several reasons why an email archive application makes sense
for even the smallest of businesses with just a few employees who use
business email.

As noted above, there is protection of the data
that goes above and beyond the simple storage of historic data on the
company’s main operational server(s). If that data is corrupted by
innocent or malicious invasion, the data may be useless with potentially
dire consequences.

The sheer volume of data in the archive will
only increase over time, even with the use of data deduplication, which
eliminates redundant data. Without a separate client-server to archive
email data, the drain on the main server(s) with ever-increasing email
data will slow the efficiency of every other real-time operation
creating load on the server(s).

For purposes of regulatory and legal considerations, a non-corruptible
data archive is essential to protect the integrity of the archive.
Ordinary storage on the main server(s) may still allow the modification
of email data, thereby destroying the chain of evidence necessary for
acceptance by regulation or litigation demands.

There are
basically three available small business solutions for data archiving.
The simplest is either an onsite or offsite solution still managed
internally by the small business. If this option is chosen, for purposes
of contingency planning for a possible natural or man-made disaster,
offsite archiving may be the best choice for all data backup and
storage, not just email data.

Another option is to employ a
third party to manage the responsibility of email archiving. This
functions much like an internal but offsite solution and has all the
benefits of an offsite solution without the hassle of managing the
archive by internal resources.

A third solution is a cloud-based
option, that is, an internet service provider (ISP) who will manage the
storage and retrieval to and from the email archive, allowing access to
specified company employees by login. Compared to the other two
solutions, this may be the most economical to engage.

How a Franking Machine Can Help a Small Business

There are several franking machine companies that are approved by
Royal Mail – Neopost, Pitney Bowes, Frama and FP. You can choose from a
wide range of franking machines from any of these suppliers. Each has a
list of features that are sure to help you with your mail requirements.


A small business needs to
advertise aggressively to get the word out that your business exists,
that you have a unique product or that you are offering one-of-a-kind
services. You can use your mail as an advertising tool by using a
franking machine. Aside from the equivalent of a Royal Mail stamp, a
franking machine can also print your company logo on your envelopes.
Imagine a clean, crisp, professional looking mail dropping into the
hands of a potential customer. What would that mean to your client and
in turn, what does that mean to your business? If you can impress the
client on this area then you are sure to get his or her attention. Or
what if before even opening the envelope, your clients see a promo that
they would not be able to resist? Because of all the advertising clutter
that is available to a customer each day, the average customer has
developed a short attention span so you only have a few seconds to
capture a client’s interest. Turning your mail into an impressive piece
of advertisement ups your chances.

Efficiency and Productivity

you ever thought how much time you spend on preparing your mails? It
might take half a day and you’re not even realizing it. If you add all
that up in a week, you spend 2.5 days just printing labels or attaching
stamps to your mail. That is too much wasted time even for a small
business. Those two days can be spent on strategizing or working on a
new marketing plan. Using a franking machine can cut those 2.5 days into
just half a day for the whole week.

By using a franking machine,
you don’t have to worry about weights and their corresponding charges. A
franking machine will automatically compute these for you. If you have
different sizes of mail, a franking machine that has an auto-sort
feature will be very useful. You no longer have to go through this
tedious task of sorting mail.

Time and Money Savings

piece of mail that has been properly franked is charged with a lower
rate by Royal Mail. It doesn’t matter if you send one or one hundred,
first or second class. There is no minimum number of pieces to avail of
the discounts. You save money each time you send mail.

As a
franking machine user, you are also entitled to avail of a wide range of
special services from Royal Mail. Ask your supplier about these as you
can get more discounts with these services.

By owning a franking
machine, you can do a lot of transactions online. You can pay your
bills, refill credits and track your expenditure through your online
account. What used to be a time-consuming task can now be accomplished
in a few clicks of a button.

A franking machine takes care of
your small but important tasks, leaving you more time to grow your
business. Check the suppliers nearest you to avail one now.

Small Business Firms on The Rise With Small Business PBX

For any rising industry, business communication – both inbound and
outbound – is essential for the success of business in the corporate
arena. If your business customers are not able to reach you in time or
get their queries or problems resolved, then your existing communication
interface is merely a waste of time and money. Most of the business
enterprises traditionally look forward to maintaining the on-premise
system for interaction but the costs are not affordable by all. The
introduction of Small Business PBX has led to a cut in the costs
involved in setting up the system. This interface allows the usage of
internet based communication through a software based interface called

The use of PBX has seen great rise in the adoption by
the small and medium scale enterprises since the time the services are
provided in a hosted format. Earlier, the setup of large room size PBX
to route the calls to different departments was required to enhance the
communication channel and this setup was massive and could not
complement the needs of the SMBs. This is why the use of Hosted PBX
systems gained importance. It is not different from the IP based PBX but
it is just maintained at a remote location and the services are
provided by a software based interface. The users can easily customize
the various options provided in the switch.

Virtual PBX has the
capability to set up and convert to a tailor made main menu which allows
clients to decide where they would like their calls to be connected, or
a particular organization can have the calls forwarded to the
extensions directly. The system also includes features such as call
hold, call return, call transfer, call recording, Interactive Voice
Response, Direct Inward Dialing, do not disturb, call screening,
voicemail and fax, etc. These features are integrated to provide a
unified platform for access. This system functions as the centralized
space from where the calls are directed to other relevant departments.

The traditional PBX has the capability to provide all the features that
Small business PBX intends to provide but the major difference between
the two is the cost and storage space. When we talk about the hosted
interface, the storage space that the users will get over the cloud is
unlimited and hence the users will not get the message of inbox full.
The unlimited number of extensions allows every sort of enterprise
ranging from small to large to gain the benefits of this system by
paying exactly for what they use. This is a scalable interface that
allows business firms to perform relevant changes in their functions and
capabilities as and when the requirement arises.

Small Business
PBX is gaining huge grounds in the small business corporate market due
to the simple fact that it has brought about a major change in the way
customers perceive small businesses. The lucrative business phone
channel comes equipped with features that project the image of a Fortune
500 when a user calls in. Virtual PBX can thus offer a virtual image
that helps business firms gain business from faraway locations by
showing the customers that theirs is a reputed business firm that is
dominant in the corporate market. The provision of virtual office can
also be facilitated since the employees can work in a virtual
environment while staying connected over the phone for discussions.