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SBA’s Most Popular Blogs of 2012: Steps to Starting a Business, Writing a Business Plan, and More

Wed, 2012-12-19 15:11

Now that 2012 is coming to a close, we are looking back at the past year here at SBA. We’ve posted a lot of articles – based on questions we receive from small business owners – but these are the top 10 topics that you liked the most (by number of views):
10.       Starting a Freelance Business – How to Take Care of Legal, Tax and Contractual Paperwork
9.         How to Set a Marketing Budget that Fits your Business Goals and Provides a High Return on Investment

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“Made in the USA” Can Make Good Business Sense, But Watch Your Advertising Claims

Wed, 2012-12-19 07:16

Does your business source or manufacture all its goods in the USA? The “Made in the USA” tagline can be a powerful marketing tool, but it can also make good business sense.
According to the Washington Post, manufacturing in the USA can be a smart investment, even in the face of cheaper offshore alternatives. The article, written by Los Angeles-based small business owner Nicholas Ventura, cites “Five ways ‘Made in the USA’ can cut your company’s manufacturing costs.” Ventura is co-founder of Youth Monument Clothing, Inc.

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2012 Economic Census Mailings Sent to U.S. Businesses to Create a Snapshot of the American Economy

Tue, 2012-12-18 12:15

The Commerce Department's  U.S. Census Bureau is mailing nearly 4 million forms to American businesses, as the official twice-a-decade measure of the economy continues rolling out. Economic census forms began being mailed in October. The majority of the forms were mailed Monday of this week. Most U.S. businesses with paid employees will receive a form in the coming weeks. The Census Bureau will collect responses until the Feb. 12 deadline, unless an extension is filed.The 2012 Economic Census covers more than 1,000 industries in all sectors of the private, nonfarm economy.

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Use a Business Mentor to Plan for 2013

Mon, 2012-12-17 17:50

Now that 2012 is wrapping up, we have the opportunity to take a breath, evaluate where the year has taken us in relation to our business goals and create a game plan for how we will move forward towards success in the new year. A business mentor may just be the perfect means to helping you create that plan. A study by the U.S. Small Business Administration, SBA ED Resources 10-11 Impact Study Final Report, found that small business clients who had received 3 or more hours of mentoring reported higher revenues and increased business growths.

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Contiguous U.S. Warmer and Drier Than Average for November, Autumn

Mon, 2012-12-17 10:30

Drought persists, causing water resource issues for central U.S.; 2012 virtually certain to become warmest year on record for the nationThe average temperature for the contiguous U.S. during November was 44.1°F, 2.1°F above the 20th century average, tying 2004 as the 20th warmest November on record. The autumn contiguous U.S. temperature of 54.7°F was the 21st warmest autumn, 1.1°F above average.The November nationally-averaged precipitation total of 1.19 inches was 0.93 inch below the long-term average and the 8th driest November on record.

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Acting U.S. Commerce Secretary Blank Supports Joining Forces Veterans Hiring Initiative

Fri, 2012-12-14 13:00

Acting U.S. Commerce Secretary Rebecca Blank today participated in a Joining
Forces Veterans Hiring Event that recognized Veterans Day and the contributions
of our men and women in uniform. The event, sponsored by Honeywell and their
military recruitment partner Orion International, aimed to identify and match
veteran job candidates with open positions at Honeywell and recognized
Honeywell’s efforts to provide veterans with more career opportunities.
Honeywell’s Chairman and CEO Dave Cote and Joining Forces Executive Director

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5 Ways to Attract Shoppers for the Holidays—and Beyond

Fri, 2012-12-14 00:52

Do you think it’s too late to attract holiday shoppers into your business? Whether you’re a retailer, a restaurant or a service provider such as a spa or hair salon, there are still plenty of holiday dollars to be had. The spending doesn’t stop after Christmas, either—consumers with gift cards or gift cash in their pockets are out in droves, eager to treat themselves, celebrate and splurge. How can you attract customers to your business for the holidays? Try these tactics.

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New Collaboration with Joining Forces Initiative Is a Win for America’s Veterans and Companies

Thu, 2012-12-13 12:30

Guest blog post by Dr. Rebecca Blank, Acting Secretary of the U.S. Department of CommerceYesterday, I spoke at the National Veteran Employment Summit
hosted by Monster and I announced that Monster has signed
up to participate in the Joining Forces effort to help hire or train 250,000 veterans and military spouses. The companies
participating in Joining Forces know that hiring veterans is not only the right
thing to do, but it’s also good business. America’s veterans have the

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Building a Business Plan – New SBA Online Tool Can Help You Get Started

Thu, 2012-12-13 06:50

Having a business plan is a must for small business owners, but finding the time to put pen to paper often means putting them on hold until the very last minute, such as right before that big meeting with a loan officer or bank manager.
But business planning does not have to be that way.
Every smart entrepreneur and business owner should already have a firm grasp of key information about their business and on what will influence the path they take and decisions they make over the course of 1-3 years.

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How to Determine the Fundability of Your Business

Wed, 2012-12-12 20:07

The definition of fundable is the capability of being funded or being bankable. A company’s fundability is crucial to obtaining the necessary funds needed to operate, develop and grow a business.
Unfortunately, the most common mistake business owners make is applying for financing before their company is even ready.
Why not know in advance if you qualify for funding before actually applying?
Instead of relying on personal credit, why not establish a fundable company that can get the financing it needs based on its own creditworthiness.

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