Self-Informed OutFront Weekly
Apr. 9, 2013

Tax tip No. 5: April mistakes bring May headaches
NASE tax expert Keith Hall writes, "We knew it would happen. April is here and many of us still haven't finished our tax return. There are still a couple of weeks to go, so don't feel too rushed but it's time to get busy. As you plow through all of the paper and numbers and receipts, let me plant one thing in the back of your mind to keep you focused. The number one reason that this return might spark that dreaded letter from the IRS asking for more detail, or worse, for more money, is math errors."More

Untold story of small business delay under ACA, just déjà vu from Massachusetts
The revelation that the Obama administration will delay the roll out of the "choice option" for small business until 2015 came as a huge surprise to many, including Joe Klein at Time, however anyone familiar with the Massachusetts experiment will feel a strong sense of déjà vu. Small companies should be even more uncertain of the law now that the cost-saving mechanism they were sold is now on the back burner. Yet the penalties for not offering insurance, new taxes on fully insured plans and EHB requirements all remain on schedule.More

What would-be entrepreneurs fear most about starting up
While a majority of Americans prefer to be self-employed, relatively few actually take the plunge. What's stopping them? According to a 2012 survey conducted for the European Commission by TNS Custom Research, 51 percent of Americans would rather be self-employed and 44 percent think it would be possible for them to go into business for themselves within the next five years — a figure that has increased 8 percentage points since 2009. But despite the relatively large number of Americans who want to be in business for themselves and believe it feasible in the near future, relatively few would-be entrepreneurs actually take the initiative. More

Why you need a website to market your business
Constant Contact
Small businesses have a lot of options to market their business but not enough time to use them all. So I wasn't surprised to hear this question during a recent webinar: "Do small businesses really need a website? Is it worth it to spend money on them when you can use social media for free?" Social media is a critical part of any business's marketing mix but your marketing strategy shouldn't rely only on social media tools. Here are three reasons why you also need a website for your business to market effectively.More

Self-employed? Take smarter deductions
The Huffington Post
Taking business deductions creates two problems for the self-employed: Deductions encourage self-employed workers to compete in "a race to the bottom." Self-employed try to earn the least money possible in order to pay as little as possible towards Social Security and Medicare taxes. Instead of focusing on growing their business, they fixate on keeping it in check by spending more and thus, earning less. Yet, it's in the interests of our social security system for the government to encourage self-employed to earn more money. In fact, it's in the best interests of all Americans to help self-employed businesses survive and thrive. That's why Nancy K. Humphreys proposes a "No-Cost Tax Break for Self-Employed."More

The basics of small business
San Angelo Standard Times
Paul Howard writes, "Since I have been an adviser at the Angelo State University Small Business Development Center, it never ceases to amaze me how many people are interested in starting their own small business. Regardless of the idea, lots of work will need to be done before you can hang out that new shingle or flashing neon open sign." Here are some things to keep in mind before opening the doors of your new business.More

Study: Women-owned businesses increase 59 percent since 1997
The Los Angeles Times
The number of businesses owned by women in the United States has increased 59 percent since 1997, according to an estimate from American Express. Those 8.6 million firms are generating more than $1.3 trillion in revenue and employing nearly 7.8 million people, according to the 2013 State of Women-Owned Businesses Report from American Express Open, a small-business arm of the company. California leads the nation with an estimated 1.1 million businesses owned by women, employing 983,000 people and generating about $198 million in sales, according to the report.More

5 essential video marketing tips for small-businesses owners read
Business 2 Community
As a small-business owner, you may not have quite the same kinds of resources or enormous marketing budget as a Fortune 500 brand. That hardly means that you cannot launch a truly effective and affordable video marketing strategy. All you really need is a solid strategy and a bit of determination. Read on for five essential video marketing tips designed with small business owners in mind.More

Outsourcing frees small-business owners to focus
BusinessNewsDaily via FoxBusiness
Small-business owners like to think they can do it all but even the most organized business owners sometimes need some help running their businesses. To get that help, many business owners have turned to outsourcing. While the word may evoke images of sending work overseas, small business owners can actually use outsourcing to their advantage by sending work-related functions to companies that have the professional expertise to handle them. Business owners have turned to outsourcing to handle bookkeeping, accounting, logistics and marketing, among other areas of operation.More

Kansas ranked seventh-best state for small business
The Topeka Capital-Journal
Kansas is the seventh-best state in the country for small business, according to an online survey. The survey, conducted by business listing site and the Kansas City, Mo.-based Kauffman Foundation, asked more than 7,000 business owners how they would rate their state in terms of ease of starting a business, ease of hiring, training and networking programs, regulations and overall friendliness to business.More