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            I recently opened a sports memorabilia shop and now want to add an online component to sell my merchandise via the Internet. I plan to hire someone to design my website, but am looking for advice to provide that person with guidance and direction

           Nearly every small business has a website today…and no wonder. A 2011 Pew Internet study found that nearly half of all searches for local businesses are conducted online (newspapers finished a distant second). And usually, a company’s website is the first place prospective customers go when those search engine results come up.

About the Author

          This column is brought to you by the Merrimack Valley Chapter of SCORE, with nearly 70 current and former business executives available to provide free, confidential, one-on-one business mentoring and training workshops for area businesses. Call 603-666-7561 or visit merrimackvalley.score.org for information on mentoring, upcoming workshops and volunteer opportunities. SCORE is a national, non-profit organization and a resource partner of the U. S. Small Business Administration

Ask SCORE

            I’ve operated a local convenience store for almost seven years, never taking off more than an occasional weekend or holiday. Every time I plan a vacation, something comes up. How do I break this pattern before I burn out?

Ask SCORE

            I’ve operated a local convenience store for almost seven years, never taking off more than an occasional weekend or holiday. Every time I plan a vacation, something comes up. How do I break this pattern before I burn out?

 

About the Author

         This column is brought to you by the Merrimack Valley Chapter of SCORE, with nearly 70 current and former business executives available to provide free, confidential, one-on-one business mentoring and training workshops for area businesses. Call 603-666-7561 or visit merrimackvalley.score.org for information on mentoring, upcoming workshops and volunteer opportunities. SCORE is a national, non-profit organization and a resource partner of the U. S. Small Business Administration.

Ask SCORE

          I’m confused about the rules for paying employees overtime. Can you explain them to me? 

         Should you be paying overtime to your employees? The answer is: it depends.

          Under the U.S. Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), employers are required to pay overtime to most hourly employees who work more than 40 hours a week for businesses that take in more than $500,000 a year in revenue.

About the Author

          This column is brought to you by the Merrimack Valley Chapter of SCORE, with nearly 70 current and former business executives available to provide free, confidential, one-on-one business mentoring and training workshops for area businesses. Call 603-666-7561 or visit merrimackvalley.score.org for information on mentoring, upcoming workshops and volunteer opportunities. SCORE is a national, non-profit organization and a resource partner of the U. S. Small Business Administration. 

Success in small business is not only about what you know, but also who you know and how well you know them. As such, networking and relationship-building is critical to successfully starting and growing any enterprise—something SCORE Foundation President David Bobbitt knows well. In addition to having started and operated a successful revenue consulting firm focused on the biomedical research sector, he helped organize the fundraising effort behind the launch the world’s newest next-generation genomic sequencing center. David also built the largest private-sector fundraising program for kidney disease services and research in the U.S. In this interview, David shares his networking and fundraising tips to help you grow your business.

You’ve had a rather prolific career as an entrepreneur. What role did networking play in starting and growing your ventures?

It was very important, and not just for finding clients, customers, and business partners. For one of our start-ups, we were unsure what the product would be. So, we networked with people across that particular market to test ideas.

About the Author

David BobbittDavid R. Bobbitt serves as the President of the SCORE Foundation and Vice President of Development at the SCORE Association. He is a writer, entrepreneur, and fundraiser who has helped to lead and to launch some amazing organizations. Professionally, he led the fundraising to launch the newest next generation genomic sequencing center in the world and previously built the largest private sector fundraising program for kidney disease services and research in the U.S. David founded and ran a successful revenue consulting firm focused on the biomedical research sector. He holds an undergraduate degree from University of Virginia (UVa), a graduate engineering degree from Northeastern University, and is currently an MBA candidate at the Darden Graduate School of Business at UVa. He lives in metro DC with his partner and their newborn son.

David is excited to be part of SCORE Association. “SCORE volunteer mentors make a difference every day in the lives of thousands of Americans. Our entire society benefits from small business owners and entrepreneurs who are disproportionately the source of new hires in the economy. Volunteering at SCORE is one of the many ways business leaders give and give back.”

Considerations When Using Independent Contractors slides presented by Katie Marble at SCORE's November 2014 meeting.

About the Author

Katie Kiernan Marble

Marble Law Firm, PLLC

80 Palomino Lane

Suite 201

Bedford, NH  03110

Ask SCORE

          My brother-in-law has approached me about going into business with him in a home cleaning franchise. I’ve always heard one should never go into business with relatives. Is that true? 

About the Author

          This column is brought to you by the Merrimack Valley Chapter of SCORE, with nearly 70 current and former business executives available to provide free, confidential, one-on-one business mentoring and training workshops for area businesses. Call 603-666-7561 or visit merrimackvalley.score.org for information on mentoring, upcoming workshops and volunteer opportunities. SCORE is a national, non-profit organization and a resource partner of the U. S. Small Business Administration. 

Has your bar or restaurant concept taken off to the point where you can barely handle the crowds? Are your customers begging for another location? That’s a great problem to have, but where should you locate your new store depends on your goals. Perhaps you need another location in the same town, or maybe you’re attracting customers outside your area, indicating demand for your concept in a neighboring city.

When-is-a-Good-Time-to-Open-a-Second-Location-of-Your-Bar-or-RestaurantHow do you know if you’re ready for a second location? Ask yourself the following questions:

About the Author

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SPIKE TV

SPIKE is honored to be among such influential companies. We are a national leader in programming that supports small business and entrepreneurship, while simultaneously entertaining the heck out of people. The brand speaks to men’s adventurous side – to work harder, be stronger and to make as much as possible along the way.

 

 

Reiva Lesonsky HeadshotRieva Lesonsky is CEO of GrowBiz Media, a media company that helps entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses. Follow Rieva at Twitter.com/Rieva and visit her blog atSmallBizDaily.com. Visit her website SmallBizTrendCast to get the scoop on business trends and sign up for Rieva’s free TrendCast reports.

Your restaurant is successful. Congratulations! Now it’s time to think about expansion. Perhaps customers have asked when you’ll be opening in a location closer to them. Perhaps you have visions of a chain of locations throughout your region or nationwide. Perhaps you’ve even had people ask whether you sell franchises, because they’d like to get in on your concept. When deciding how to grow your restaurant, there are two choices: starting a chain, or selling franchises.

About the Author

Spike TV Logo

SPIKE TV

SPIKE is honored to be among such influential companies. We are a national leader in programming that supports small business and entrepreneurship, while simultaneously entertaining the heck out of people. The brand speaks to men’s adventurous side – to work harder, be stronger and to make as much as possible along the way.

 

 

Reiva Lesonsky HeadshotRieva Lesonsky is CEO of GrowBiz Media, a media company that helps entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses. Follow Rieva at Twitter.com/Rieva and visit her blog atSmallBizDaily.com. Visit her website SmallBizTrendCast to get the scoop on business trends and sign up for Rieva’s free TrendCast reports.

Any bar or restaurant owner can’t help but be aware of the power online ratings and reviews have to generate traffic for your establishment. Ratings and review sites are important not only because consumers turn to them when seeking bars and restaurants, but also because search engines are increasingly relying on them. That means the more ratings and review sites you have a presence on, the higher your restaurant or bar will pop up in search results.

Using Ratings & Review SitesTo get started, make sure your bar or restaurant is listed on the major review sites and on local search sites that incorporate reviews, including:

About the Author

Spike TV Logo

SPIKE TV

SPIKE is honored to be among such influential companies. We are a national leader in programming that supports small business and entrepreneurship, while simultaneously entertaining the heck out of people. The brand speaks to men’s adventurous side – to work harder, be stronger and to make as much as possible along the way.

 

 

Reiva Lesonsky HeadshotRieva Lesonsky is CEO of GrowBiz Media, a media company that helps entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses. Follow Rieva at Twitter.com/Rieva and visit her blog atSmallBizDaily.com. Visit her website SmallBizTrendCast to get the scoop on business trends and sign up for Rieva’s free TrendCast reports.

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