There are many organizations to help you start and grow your business.
This is a small sampling of the over 300 resources listed in Dare To Be Your Own Boss!
Although the listings are located in the United States there are
many organizations globally that help people start a business.
Business and Marketing Plans:
You can build an online plan at no charge at the Small Business Administration (SBA) - www.sba.gov/business-plan/1
>Business Credit Card: A business credit card helps in tracking expenses. Some issuers offer a rewards or cash back program.
>Merchant Account: Comparing the various terms—such as fees and availability of funds—will help you select the organization that best fits
your business. Here are some providers to consider:
>New Laws and the EMV Chip Cards: In October 2015, laws shifted the liability for fraudulent credit card purchases to the vendors who do
not process cards using the new EMV chip readers. Prior to this, the credit card issuers were liable.
Cybersecurity is essential for the well-being of all businesses.
Many enterprises have gone under after their network and financial systems were hacked.
This report sheds light on the severity of the issue. 2017 Norton Cyber Security Insights Report by Symantec
There are many cybersecurity systems available. One place to start is by reading this article in PCMag.com,
"The Best Security Suites of 2018"
Domain Names & Web hosting:
>Domain Names: Obtain a domain for your name and your company name. You may also want a domain name for your products or services.
These can be forwarded to one website.
If the names you want are already taken then add dashes, underscores or other information.
When you do a search, other names will be suggested.
>Domain Registration & Providers: There are many. It is wise to research various options.
>Comparison of Providers: Consumer-Rankings.com http://www.consumer-rankings.com/hosting/
>Note: Invoices and other scams may be sent to you requesting payment for the annual domain name renewal. It is wise to only deal with the
company that registered your domain.
Financial Records: It is wise to backup all data regularly.
>Receipts: Obtain receipts for all purchases (the IRS will expect you to have them).
Funding Your Project:
>Crowdfunding is a popular concept in which people donate money to help an entrepreneur start a business. One well-known site is
www.Kickstarter.com. There are others. It is advisable to do your “due diligence.”
>FedBizOpps: https://www.fbo.gov/, this site posts all Federal procurement opportunities with a value over $25,000.
>Internal Revenue Service - www.irs.gov/businesses offers information on starting a business.
>SCORE – www.score.org. Business people volunteer to assist individuals in starting and growing an enterprise.
>U.S. Small Business Administration – https://www.sba.gov/. The SBA provides information and resources on starting businesses including
developing a business plan online at no charge.
Legal Business Structures:
>Professional Advice: It is wise to obtain professional advice from a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) or an attorney about legal structure.
Types of business structures include Limited Liability (LLC), Sole Proprietorship, Partnership, S Corporation, C Corporation and Nonprofit.
The IRS lists them here - www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/business-structures
Master Business License and licenses for various types of occupations and businesses are often required. Contact your state’s Department of
There are many networking groups to help grow your business. Here are some to consider:
Newsletters & Blogs:
>Collect email addresses from customers and prospects. Add a signup form on your website.
>An email service provider is required when sending newsletters and blogs.
Here are a few service providers to consider:
>Note: There is a requirement to offer “unsubscribe” to avoid being ranked as a spammer
Paperless Filing System—Record Keeping:
Creating a paperless filing system of all your documents and receipts makes it quick and easy to retrieve them.
You can scan all receipts, invoices and documents into pdf documents and file them on your computer. Include online billing and statements
Setting up this type of system is simple. Here are the steps:
- Download Adobe Reader – www.adobe.com, which is free. (Note: Look at boxes that are checked. You may not want all add-ons).
- Buy a scanner/printer. There are several models available for under $100.
- Scan receipts and file in folders.
- Once the files are scanned then backup them up daily in the Cloud, on a hard drive or both.
Many consider social media to be an essential marketing tool. There are a variety of sites including Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and more.
>The 80/20 Rule: It is helpful to keep in mind the “80/20 rule.” The concept is that 80 percent of sales come from 20 percent of your
Knowing what works well for your business can save you much time and frustration.
>Two helpful books on this topic are Platform: How to Get Noticed in a Noisy World by Michael Hyatt and SMART Social Media for Authors
by Chris Syme. These books are apropos for many types of businesses.
It is wise to obtain professional advice from a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and an attorney about legal structure, taxes, contracts and
other business information.
Recommended Books & Documentary Films
>Here is a list of business books and documentary films
>IRS Tax Information For Businesses - /www.irs.gov/businesses
>IRS “Starting a Business” - www.irs.gov/Businesses/Small-Businesses-&-Self-Employed/Starting-a-Business
>Employer Identification Number (EIN #) – This is for all types of business structures. It is wise to use this instead of your Social Security
number. You can apply online at: https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/apply-for-an-employer-identification-number-
>IRS – File estimated taxes quarterly. Estimated taxes include federal income tax, Social Security and Medicare taxes). See this link for
more information: www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/irs-tax-calendar-for-businesses-and-self-employed
>IRS – Form 1099 for payments to contractors such as editors, consultants and more. – https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-
Contact the Department of Revenue for your state.
>Startup Guides: Many states offer startup guides and workshops.
>States have a variety of taxes and filing requirements.
>Tax Reseller Permit: This avoids double taxation. A tax reseller permit enables you to buy products for resale and not pay taxes until you
sell the items. You do need to collect sales taxes from your customers based on the retail price you charge and the specified tax rate for your
Trade Associations and Trade Shows:
Trade associations provide information on the latest industry developments through newsletters and meetings. Trade shows are a gathering
place for entrepreneurs and a venue to meet and network with competitors and suppliers.
Here are some ways to locate trade associations:
>Internet search: A search on associations in the field you are exploring will provide sources from which to choose.
>Libraries: Librarians will help you streamline your search. They have access to vast resources.
>Wikipedia: Wikipedia has a list of trade groups that is updated by the public.
There are many resources to help you start and grow your business. It is easy to go in many directions at the same time. Yet finding what
works best for you is a process. Take what feels right and let go of the rest.
Best wishes for success with your ventures!
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