planning
business planning

A Simple, Step by Step Guide For Business Planning

by Noah Parsons

We have plenty of in-depth articles here on Bplans about business planning, for example: why you should plan, what kind of plan you need, and how to prepare a formal business plan document. But, what we’ve been missing, until now, is a simple step-by-step summary of the business planning process to get you going and... Read more »

growing
How to Find the Right Attorney For Your Business

How to Hire the Best Attorney for Your Small Business

by Arlene Soto

Hiring professionals for a small business is an important process. The best attorney for your business will depend on what the legal needs are for your company. In fact, there is a good chance there is no one attorney who can handle everything, so the best attorney may actually turn out to be a law firm... Read more »

funding
What I learned from appearing on Shark Tank

What I Learned From My Appearance on Shark Tank

by Lisa Furgison

It’s not everyday that a television producer handpicks you to appear on ABC’s hit show “Shark Tank,” but that’s what happened to entrepreneur Kelly Costello. Costello is the founder of Puppy Cake, a company that sells boxed cake mix for dogs. It’s a lot like the do-it-yourself Betty Crocker cake mix, except the ingredients are changed... Read more »

growing
Killer home page

How to Engage Customers with a Killer Homepage

by J.R. Garrett

These days, just having a website won’t cut it. You need a sticky website—one that engages visitors, persuading them to stay on your site and explore your brand further. That simply won’t happen without a killer homepage. Think about it: Your homepage is where visitors decide if you’re worth their time—and you’ve got about six... Read more »

growing
we cannot solve a problem by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them albert einstein

Innovate! 7 Quotes About the Value and Risk of Innovation

by Jonathan Michael

Forget about a “case of the Mondays.” Most weeks, it’s Wednesday when you start to wonder why you’re doing what you do. To get you through hump day with a little more pep in your step, we’ve gathered seven thought-provoking quotes from some of the most famous innovators and trailblazers. Maybe they’ll inspire you to... Read more »

starting
Business ideas

Is Your New Business Idea Worth Pursuing?

by Arlene Soto

I have so many new ideas for my business. How do I determine which ones are the best to pursue? Most business owners want their business to grow, and often growth includes consideration of new products or services. Sometimes, though, brainstorming new possibilities interferes with maintaining the core business by distracting the owner from focusing... Read more »

planning
How to Calculate Your TAM (Total Addressable Market)

How Big is Your Potential Market, Really?

by Caroline Cummings

Whether you’re a startup or an up-and-running business, you should know what your total potential market opportunity is for your products or services. I’ve coached many companies over the years, as well as judged several business plan competitions, and I’m always surprised by how most business owners can’t confidently tell you their total market potential.... Read more »

planning
shutterstock_203013682

Business Money Is Tight Right Now, What Are My Options?

by Candice Landau

Every business has ups and downs and while many make it through, others don’t. Maybe you need money to buy inventory, to grow or even to strengthen your offering. Whatever the reason, the question is still: what are your options when you know you need a bit of extra cash on hand? Read more »

growing
mobile security

The Future of Mobile Security for Small Business

by Brittany Klontz

For most businesses, smartphones and tablets have already become regular pieces of office furniture, chirping and buzzing beside an employee’s computer. Under a workplace protocol called BYOD, or “Bring Your Own Device,” employees tote their own tech with them into the office, using them to complete their tasks. BYOD is already quite common. The Forrester... Read more »

planning
small ideas can become big ideas

Uh-oh! Do you have a “sitcom” startup?

by Candice Landau

There are two primary reasons that startups fail: One, the execution of the idea is poor (wrong location, poor product, bad service, etc) and two, the startup is not making something that people want. Simply put, it’s not solving a real-life problem. Y Combinator calls these types of startup ideas, "sitcom startups". Read more »

starting
What I wish I knew before I started my business

What I Wish I’d Known Before I Started My Business

by Lisa Furgison

If you’re about to start a business, you’ve probably read several how-to books looking for advice on how to be successful. While researching is a great first step, there are some lessons that you won’t find in a book. You need to hear from business owners who have been in your position, who started a... Read more »

planning
Running a business can be like running a marathon- goals can be your mile markers a long the way.

The Importance of Setting Goals in Business

by Arlene Soto

Why is it important to set business goals? Goals are powerful—they can focus attention on achieving desirable outcomes. In business, one desirable outcome would be profitability. Profitability does not happen without making sales, plus correctly managing expenses. Employees prefer to know what management expects them to accomplish, and goals provide that direction. The human brain... Read more »

planning
ExportBookbyLaurelDelaney

From Market Research to Writing Your Export Business Plan

by Laurel Delaney

Below is the final extract we will be publishing from Laurel Delaney’s book “Exporting: The Definitive Guide to Selling Abroad Profitably.” This book was published in December 2013 and is available for purchase online. If you would like to find out more about the author, the book, or about exporting in general, Laurel’s blog is an excellent... Read more »

planning
8 Quotes That Will Motivate You to Make a Plan and Stick to It

8 Quotes to Motivate You to Make a Plan and Stick to It

by Jonathan Michael

Forget about a “case of the Mondays.” Most weeks, it’s Wednesday when you start to wonder why you’re doing what you do. To get you through hump day with a little more pep in your step, we’ve gathered eight inspirational quotes from some of history’s greatest minds. Maybe they’ll inspire you to stick with what... Read more »

funding
What It Takes to Get Angel Investment

5 Essentials for Angel Investment

by Tim Berry

Three months ago I posted Securing Angel Investors in this space. I was responding then to a request that I explain the process step-by-step. But I’m afraid I skipped the first and, for some, the most important step. Before you begin, it’s vital to determine whether you actually have a solid investment opportunity, regardless of how good... Read more »

planning
An entrepreneur views information about Starbucks on his tablet while drinking coffee

Thinking About Buying a Franchise? Consider These Pros and Cons

by Scott Gerber

Like any other business, there’s a lot to consider when purchasing a franchise. Does starting your own business yield more long-term rewards, or is buying a franchise a better choice? To find out, we asked eight founders from Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) their thoughts on the subject. Here are their answers are below. Q: I’m thinking about buying a franchise.... Read more »

planning
Museum of Modern Art Non Profit Business

How to Write a Nonprofit Business Plan

by Angelique O'Rourke

Starting and running a nonprofit is an exhilarating experience, but it also requires thoughtful planning and execution to be successful. Nonprofit organizations share many overlapping needs with traditional for-profit ventures, including the need for a good business plan. At some point in the process of starting or managing your nonprofit, you will probably realize that... Read more »

starting
Starting a Hair Salon

How to Open a Successful Hair Salon

by Lisa Furgison

Planning to open a hair salon? Check out these tips from a salon owner with 40 years in the business. Read more »

starting
Average people learn from their (2)

What Should All Entrepreneurs Know Before Starting Their Very First Business?

by Candice Landau

We've turned to entrepreneurs and experts to get you the best answers to this question. Whether you're starting a business for the very first time or are starting a business for the third time, there are some things that it can't hurt to remember. Read more »

starting
shutterstock_117791449

7 Quotes from Famous Americans About Business and Success

by Jonathan Michael

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” - Mark Twain “Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again,... Read more »