Business planning and strategy

Take Control of Your Financial Future During National Financial Literacy Month

April is often associated with spring cleaning and reorganizing, which means you finally made the time go through that overflowing junk drawer or to organize last year’s financial statements for the tax filing deadline. But when it comes to your finances, you can use this time to do more than just file your tax return documents thanks to the resources provided as part of National Financial Literacy Month.

How to Close the Funding Gap for Female Entrepreneurs

Throughout Women’s History Month, we celebrate the economic, social and political contributions that women make to our world. Women account for roughly half of the American workforce, attain higher levels of education than men and are an increasing share of primary or solo breadwinners. There is no doubt that for America to thrive, we must promote the economic empowerment of women. Central to women’s economic success is women’s entrepreneurship, which contributes significantly to overall economic growth and prosperity.

How to Write a Business Plan

Starting a small business is hard work. The list of things you have to do in order to turn your dream into reality may seem overwhelming at first. When faced with such a formidable to-do list, it is easy to think of a formal business plan as something to table for later. After all, organizing a list of responsibilities and checking off items one by one as you accomplish them is itself a form of planning. Why waste time creating and perfecting a business plan at this early stage of the game?

Understanding Collateral

As a general rule of thumb, banks will require a borrower to put up collateral for a loan. The only exception to this rule is for clients who have a long-term relationship with banks and whose business has proven to be profitable over a multi-year period.

Collateral is important for banks to reduce their risk. If the business is not able to pay back the loan, a bank may decide to take ownership of the collateral that has been pledged to them in the documents you sign when you got the loan. Usually a bank will not take ownership of collateral if you miss an interest payment, or one or two repayment installments, but will if they feel that their loan is at risk.

Is Your Cash Flow Ready for the Holiday Season?

You may not be trimming the tree just yet, but it’s definitely time to make sure your business is ready for the biggest shopping season of the year. From retailers to restaurants, the majority of small businesses will significantly boost their bottom line in Q4. According to a recent survey from Vistaprint, 75% of consumers indicated that they’re likely to do at least some of their holiday shopping with small businesses this year.

7 Avoidable Mistakes You're Making in Your Business Loan Application

As with almost every aspect of our lives these days, the internet has made it easier, faster, and more convenient than ever for small business owners to gain access to financing, submit business loan applications, and get cash in hand to pursue their goals. Even so, when it comes to something as important as financing your small business, the easy, fast, convenient way won't necessarily give you the best results.

Small businesses should re-evaluate business plans before reopening

Business owners who sustained substantial loss from Hurricane Harvey should treat reopening their business like starting up for the first time. Whether the business owner gets funds through the Small Business Administration, a bank loan or their savings, reopening will take planning and capital. Lack of these is the reason behind the majority of small businesses that fail, said Joe Humphreys, University of Houston-Victoria Small Business Development Center executive director. "It's like starting all over again," he said. "They may not have the same employees.

Write a Business Plan

Starting a small business is hard work. The list of things you have to do in order to turn your dream into reality may seem overwhelming at first. When faced with such a formidable to-do list, it is easy to think of a formal business plan as something to table for later. After all, organizing a list of responsibilities and checking off items one by one as you accomplish them is itself a form of planning. Why waste time creating and perfecting a business plan at this early stage of the game?

The answer is that even the simplest business plan will help you:

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