One of the main reasons for small business failure is that people have no clue about how hard it is to run a business. While being an entrepreneur can feel like a lonely road, there are several online communities that can help guide you through the journey. Thanks to technology we have access to a world-wide network of tools and support. Here are my picks for the 15 best websites that are go-to resources for small business owners.
Inc Magazine is the go-to resource for start-ups and companies looking to scale. The website shares trends on the best industries to start a business in, leading teams and managing your money. I love the Inc. 500 issue every year. It’s also a place to get inspiration for potential prospects if you’re selling B-to-B.
Entrepreneur’s website will help you understand what it means to be your own boss. The website covers information on start-up, managing and leading teams and on franchising. There’s a special section of the site called TrepLabs is a hub for indie app developers, giving them an opportunity to shine.
Black Enterprise is the online resource for people of color looking to start or grow their enterprise. The website shares entrepreneurial profiles and stories of how-they-did-it, alongside features on doing business with companies that are looking to diversify their supplier base. BE has an online small business university where experts including me, share strategies on marketing, financials and legal aspects of business.
Small Business Trends is the website that will help you take action on your business. The articles are how-to driven and help entrepreneurs understand topics like hiring 1099 employees, generating sales and giving your staff a raise. They also have a marketplace of resources that include free landing page templates.
Business on Main is an online destination for small-business leaders and entrepreneurs who are looking for information to take their companies to the next level. I especially like their engaging original videos, featuring business stories that will inform and inspire you on the path to success.
Facebook for Business is where you can go to read case studies and strategies that other small business owners are using to gain momentum on Facebook. The site provides some ideas to get out of any marketing rut.
Fast Company is small business for creatives and innovators. They cover everything from the latest trends in social media marketing and how brands and businesses are replicating. If you’re looking for ways to think outside the box of your small business then this website is the place to gain a fresh perspective.
Huffington Post Small Biz is a smorgasbord of business news. It shares the untold stories of main street businesses alongside, timely national business news. If you’re limited for time in the morning and want to get a broad perspective on what’s happening in small business, Huffington Post Small Biz is the perfect resource.
Mashable Small Business offers business content with a tech perspective. The website is the go-to resource for tech start-ups and how-to integrate technology trends in your business. In the watercooler section, you’ll find spoofs, and pop-culture humor that reminds us entrepreneurs not to take ourselves too seriously.
Bplans.com contains the largest single online collection of free sample business plans. In addition, it has helpful tools and know-how for managing your business. Bplans includes practical advice on planning, interactive tools and calculators, and a panel of experts who have answered thousands of questions from people like you. I really enjoy their valuable “plain talk” resource.
SCORE is a nonprofit organization that provides expert business counseling to small business owners. What I like best about their content and newsletter program is it allows you to select which level of information that you want. From operations to financing and expansion plans, SCORE has a vast database of experts to assist your small business.
Google and Your Business blog offers tips and tricks for managing your business with Google’s solutions. Most every business, including Google, starts small. These days, technology is giving businesses even more ways to grow bigger… faster.
Work at Home Woman is a hub for stay at home moms or anyone looking to become one. The website provides everything you need to earn an income from business ideas to marketing strategies. Articles are curated by Holly Reisem Hanna, the founder who’s a work at home mom herself.
You’re The Boss Blog, New York Times offers an insider’s perspective on small business ownership. It gives business owners a place where they can compare notes, ask questions, get advice and learn from one another’s mistakes. By the way, I write for this publication as a regular contributor on social media and small business, but I read this blog long before I started writing for it.
The Self Employed is a website created by Steve Strauss, USA Today columnist and bestselling author of The Small Business Bible. It provides lots of great advice for solopreneurs in particular, on start-up, finding clients, insurance and tax issues.
Cheerful Female Manager Using Touch Pad” courtesy of stockimages / www.freedigitalphotos.net
What website do you recommend as a resource for small business owners?