Self-Employed OutFront Weekly
Jul. 1, 2014

Passing the health care buck
The Huffington Post
By now, we've all heard about the challenges and the ups-and-downs of the new health care law. From cancelled plans to delayed programs and technical glitches in online applications, the Affordable Care Act has had its share of problems. However, in the end, the Affordable Care Act — or ACA — has turned out to help millions of Americans young and old. Far from perfect, the Department of Health and Human Services declared success with over eight million people enrolled, and over 30 percent being young Americans aged 18-34.More

Maintaining mental sharpness for the self-employed
Business 2 Community
You have probably suffered through times when you felt as though you were just going through the motions and losing your focus on more occasions that you would like to remember. It happens to everyone. Losing your mental sharpness is something that can creep up and interfere with your productivity. But it is a scenario that you definitely do not want to drift regularly. This is true whether you are employed by someone else, or are self-employed.More

4 smart ways to get a better Google ranking today
Intuit Small Business
Google has fine-tuned its algorithms many times over the years, making it a challenge for businesses that rely on web search referrals to keep up. The truth is, unless you play by Google's rules, you won't achieve a top spot in the search engine results which many companies rely on to make their website and blog profitable. Here are four tips that will help you get up to speed. More

The most obvious business protecting measure most entrepreneurs miss
By the looks of things, many of you have been so busy building wealth through your businesses in the past few years, you've forgotten something pretty important — namely, a succession plan. To keep your business running if you die or are otherwise incapacitated, a succession plan is vital. But according to a recent report, 66 percent of business owners haven't gotten around to inking one. More

Passing the health care buck
The Huffington Post
Washington, D.C., and the board of D.C. Health Link — the Washington, D.C. health care exchange — are concerned about the financial well-being of the exchange and needs a new revenue stream to help support its program. In fact, there is a growing list of sales taxes — from gym to yoga fees — that join the new health care tax.More

The key to profitability that many small businesses get wrong
American Express OPEN Forum
No matter what business you're in, the key to profitability is efficiency. Why efficiency and not price? Think about it: You can only increase the price so far before the market won't take it anymore.More

You need a plan to retire before you plan to retire
To understand and appreciate the fact that there's a good chance that you will retire before you expect to do so, all you need to do is review key results of two recent well-known and respected annual studies.More

Getting paid: How to get customers to pay up
American Express OPEN Forum
Ask a room full of small-business owners if they enjoy dealing with the money side of their businesses and you'll be met with a room full of people shaking their heads no. Dealing with the money isn't fun, but it's a necessary evil for staying in business. Without money coming in, you won't be in business for long.More

Don't be discouraged: Overcome your doubts
By Greg Witz
Growing up, millennials were told repeatedly that if they got a college degree, they would get a job. This in turn would lead to buying a house and starting a family. Unfortunately, this has not been the case. Of course, having these doubts is not unique to Gen Yers. Every entrepreneur at some point wonders if he/she has made the right decision. In this article, we discuss how to overcome your doubts, take action to achieve your goals, and knowing when to walk away if necessary.More

Forget customer service, think customer wowing
Customer service is an overused term that we are beat over the head with constantly, but it implies that you're only serving customers and nothing more. Yet there are so many opportunities to convert a one-time buyer into a life-long customer by creating an environment that eats, sleeps and breathes service. To do this, though, you must go well beyond expectations.More

The art of self-promotion on social media
Business 2 Community
If you've been to any of Buffer's social media accounts recently (take Twitter, for instance), you may have noticed that the lion's share of stories we share come from us. We tweet our own stuff. We toot our own horn. More

For small businesses, green technology is the way to grow
What's good for the environment is also good for business, said Laurie McCabe, cofounder and partner in research firm SMB Group. And with IT vendors introducing more energy-saving products, it's easier than ever for small businesses to help the environment, save money and earn customer loyalty by going green.More

How to take a vacation from your small business
Here's a sign the economy's on a good track: More small business owners plan to take a full week off this summer than in any year since the recession began. That's according to a survey by American Express OPEN that suggests entrepreneurs are feeling more confident about the economy. AmEx's Small Business Monitor survey shows that 60 percent of respondents are planning a one-week vacation this summer, the highest since 2006. More