Which State is Most Friendly for Small Business Paperwork?

Thumbtack Small Business Survey Map

If you're like a lot of owners, the filing, applying and deluge of small business paperwork to operate your business in your city or state can be a headache. Some places are better than others In its third annual survey of small businesses, Thumbtack partnered with the Ewing Marion Kaufmann Foundation, asking owners and operators what makes for a friendly environment to … [Read more...]

Click-to-Call: Keeping Complex Simple

Man covered with code while holding head in hands

Keeping complex simple isn't always ... easy. Different people learn differently. One of the reasons for launching SmallBiz Tracks Daily Podcast is to be able to explain things in detail without getting overwhelming. Video and Infographics are another form of sharing a story or viewpoint. Sometimes, that good ole standard - text - is best. One of the most popular pages … [Read more...]

TopAlternatives: Tools for the DIY Small Business Owner

TopAlternatives Screenshot

A lot of small business owners are great at rolling up their sleeves and trying something new and on their own. If you're among the do-it-yourself types (I am), you probably like to find new and efficient ways and tools to get the job done. For those of us that are DIY business owners, TopAlternatives.com is a treasure for finding tools, apps, and software for your … [Read more...]

A Journey of a Thousand Words Begins with a Single Stroke


Writing Giving You Fits? Write In Small Bits! Let's be clear: Every business owner is a writer. Even if your business doesn't publish a blog, you probably write emails, status updates, newsletters, presentations, scopes, sales orders, and various other communication or marketing pieces. So many people believe they aren't good writers. That may be as much hedging and … [Read more...]

Thinking About Mobile Doesn’t Mean Becoming Mobile

Mobile Device in Hand at Coffee Shop

A sign painted on the window of the Sandwich Shop: "Gluten-Free Menu".  Unique for a sandwich shop, hmm? Although lunch rush was over, there was still a good-sized crowd. The owner mentioned how offering gluten-free menu items was helping bring in new customers. As we talked about other things she might be able to implement to build a better presence, offering WiFi and … [Read more...]

How to Use Pocket Premium for Better Customer Service

Pocket App

Saving favorites or bookmarks is easy. Finding them can be hard. Pocket helps keep found things found so you can share them with customers via email or at a meeting. Because you can access Pocket from the web or on a mobile app, you're never without the items you've saved. I've been using Pocket as a library of articles for awhile. When Pocket Premium became available, I … [Read more...]

Submit a Question for the SmallBiz Tracks Daily Podcast

SmallBiz Tracks Show

Having a difficult time getting your project off the launching pad, or possibly off its operating table? Is there a bugger of a problem that's go you so stymied it's keeping you up at night? Or perhaps hoping the problem goes away on its own? SmallBiz Tracks Daily Podcastpromises to break down big projects and big problems into small solutions to help business owners in … [Read more...]

Thoughts of Music at TED (Saturday Clips)

Percussive Guitar on TED

TED offers great talks around innovation, creativity, education, and technology in small doses. Most segments are around 20 minutes, and an engaging speaker can make the talk seem much shorter. Among my favorites are the mind-bending, soul-soothing conversations around music and instruments. Here are a few that really inspire me not simply for the musical creativity, but … [Read more...]

ConverStations Redesign No. 5


As a practitioner of breaking down big projects into small components, ConverStations has probably gone through dozens of modifications, but only four site-wide reboots. Well, it's five after last night. With its launch on February of 2006 on the Typepad platform, the most ambitious item on the site was the banner, which I did myself using CoolText: By 2007, I began … [Read more...]