USA Today

Start Your Own Food Business on the Cheap

By Rhonda Abrams on June 26, 2017

Paul Newman did it. Heidi Klum did it. Jimmy Dean did it. Ludacris did it. Many people dream of taking their favorite recipes and turning their love of food into their own business. Starting a food-oriented small business can be more than just a dream. If you want to package and sell your soup, jam, … Read more »

Smallbiz Dog

June 23 Take Your Dog to Your Small Biz

By Rhonda Abrams on June 21, 2017

Woof! Allow me to introduce myself. I’m ZuZu, Rhonda Abrams’ dog. I know you’re looking for Rhonda’s small business advice, but for “Take Your Dog to Work Day,” happening on June 23, I’m taking over her column. Of course, in Rhonda’s company, every day is “Take Your Dog to Work Day,” as dogs are welcome … Read more »

Smallbiz Customer

Small Business Customers: Good, Bad, Ugly

By Rhonda Abrams on June 14, 2017

Any customer is a good customer for your small business, right? After all, if someone wants to buy from you, what more can you want? Actually, lots. It turns out some customers are not worth having. And you have to learn how to get rid of them. Anyone whose been in business very long can … Read more »

Reward Employees

8 Cheap Ways to Reward Small Biz Employees

By Rhonda Abrams on June 7, 2017

Employees are at the heart of your small business. They serve the customers, make your product or provide your services, fill and process orders, get the shipping out the door. Without good employees, it’s tough to build a successful, profitable company. But in small businesses, money can often be tight. How can you reward good … Read more »

Millennials

Millennials Aren’t as Lazy as You Thought

By Rhonda Abrams on May 31, 2017

Millennials–Americans born between 1980 and 2000–may be the most entrepreneurial generation ever. A new study shows Millennials have more experience with small business and greater desire to start businesses than previous generations. But the study also demonstrates a continuing need for help for entrepreneurs if they’ll create the jobs America needs. The study, released May … Read more »

SmallBiz Artists

Hey Artist – You’re Really a Small Business

By Rhonda Abrams on May 24, 2017

You live for your art. Every day, you paint or compose music or write short stories or make beautiful hand-crafted objects. But every day, you also need to eat. If you aren’t engaging in your art just for pleasure, you’re not only an artist, you’re a small business owner. Starving artists don’t actually last very … Read more »

Biz Travel

Is Travel Good for Small Business?

By Rhonda Abrams on May 17, 2017

We’re just one week away from Memorial Day–the semi-official start of the summer season. For most employees, that means it’s time to use up some of those vacation days they’ve accumulated. But if you’re a small business owner or entrepreneur, no one gives you vacation pay. So you may think of summer as the time … Read more »

Airlines and Small Biz

8 Lessons from Airlines for Small Business

By Rhonda Abrams on May 10, 2017

Lately, it seems like airlines can’t do anything right. They drag people off planes, kill giant rabbits, snatch strollers from babies. Is this what customer service should be all about? If you run a small business, the airlines have been giving us all a master class in “what not to do to your customers,” so … Read more »

Small Business Socks

9 Small Business Facts to Knock Your Socks Off

By Rhonda Abrams on May 3, 2017

It’s Small Business Week in America, time for the country to recognize the many contributions small businesses make to our economy, our communities, and our fellow Americans. Now, if you own a small business–especially if you work from home or have just a handful of employees–acquaintances might not give you much respect. When I started … Read more »

Women Business Owners

Why the World Would End Without Women Business Owners

By Rhonda Abrams on April 26, 2017

Women small business owners are saving America. The economic recovery has been a long, slow slog. Without women starting businesses, we’d all be in much tougher shape. Here’s why: women start businesses at a rate five times faster than men. In fact, women launch 1000 new businesses every day. Women would do a whole lot … Read more »

Marijuana Smallbiz

Turning Grass into Green

By Rhonda Abrams on April 19, 2017

“You’ve completely lost it now,” was the reaction of Beth Stavola’s husband when she decided to get into the medical marijuana business. But this dynamic business woman illustrates the opportunities and challenges small business owners face when getting into the booming business of marijuana and cannabis-related products. Stavola is about as unlikely a pot entrepreneur … Read more »

Family Smallbiz

8 Steps to Surviving a Family Small Biz

By Rhonda Abrams on April 12, 2017

Love your sister and want to start a business with her? Or have your adult kids enter your small business? How about asking your parents to help with your startup? Running a business with family members can be great – or not. It can present some sticky situations – just ask the Trumps. Before you … Read more »

Smallbiz Taxes

The 6 Worst Things You Can Do on Your Small Biz Taxes

By Rhonda Abrams on April 5, 2017

The good news: your small business made money in 2016. The bad news: you’ve got to file and pay income taxes. For those of us who run small businesses or are self-employed, this can be a much more daunting task than for those who simply get a W2. You want to take every deduction you … Read more »

Danger Signs

7 Signs Your Small Business Is About to Die

By Rhonda Abrams on March 29, 2017

Every small business owner has good days and bad days, good months and bad months. But how do you know when you’re not just experiencing a temporary downswing but are in serious trouble? Here are seven key danger signs that your business is about to fail and steps you can take to keep your business … Read more »

Economy Pessimism

Small Businesses Worried About the Economy

By Rhonda Abrams on March 22, 2017

Entrepreneurs and small business owners are an optimistic group. They’re bullish on themselves and their own industry. But when it comes to the overall economy, they’re not so upbeat. That’s the conclusion of a new global survey of small companies, “The Future of Business Survey,” being conducted monthly by Facebook and coordinated by the World … Read more »

Small Biz Social Media

Make Sales, Not Tweets

By Rhonda Abrams on March 15, 2017

Our new President, Donald Trump, spends a lot of time on Twitter. He’s tweeted almost 35,000 times and often tweets many times a day. But is all that time on social media well spent? Whether you have one of the world’s largest enterprises to run – let’s say one directly affecting 330 million of your … Read more »

Sex Sells

Sex Sells. Duh.

By Rhonda Abrams on March 8, 2017

Looking for a small business start-up idea? You might want to look to the bedroom. Because, and I know this may shock you, sex sells. Romance has been around since, well, Adam and Eve. Businesses related to romance continue to do well and are increasingly mainstream. This past Valentine’s Day, even Burger King got in … Read more »

Darth Vader_ net neutrality

Darth Vader’s Guide to Small Biz & Net Neutrality

By Rhonda Abrams on March 1, 2017

Three days after Donald Trump took office, he named Ajit Pai to be the new Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). You probably didn’t take much notice of it. After all, what does the FCC have to do with your small business or startup? As it turns out, the answer is “a whole lot.” … Read more »

Best Wine SF Chron

The Best Wines in America Under $10

By Rhonda Abrams on February 22, 2017

Here’s a dilemma most wine drinkers face: you want to buy a good bottle of wine, but you don’t want to spend a fortune. And, if you’re like me, you’d like to help support a fellow small business owner, choosing a pleasurable wine from a small winery at an affordable price. How do you figure … Read more »

Trade Show Success

Secrets of Trade Show Success

By Rhonda Abrams on February 21, 2017

Marketing: it’s critical for success in any business, especially small businesses. But every small business has limited resources – both in terms of time and money – to spend on marketing, so make sure your marketing dollars and hours are being spent where they’ll do the most good. Where do I spend most of my … Read more »

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