The US Small Business Administration, or SBA.gov, was established around the middle of the century to make financial and advisory assistance available to small businesses. Today, it’s no less than a treasure trove of tips, hints, information, and services that you can leverage to begin, strengthen, and grow your business.
What can SBA.gov do for me?
Help you start your business
The Small Business Administration is a great resource for starting a business. Here is just a sampling of information you’ll find in this section of their website:
- 10-step guides to starting your business
- A fantastic overview of employment law
- Information about the specifics of running an online business
- Guidance on how to write off expenses when you begin your journey
You’ll also find articles on how to determine if you have the qualities being an entrepreneur will demand of you, how to research your market to align your business appropriately, how to find a business mentor, and where to look for more specific information.
Help you identify and meet your financial needs
One of the key areas that a lot of small businesses struggle with is the area of funding. Too often, a self-funded business simply runs out of money before they reach their break-even point, leaving owners in a tight spot.
SBA provides valuable guidance on understanding your business’s financial needs, including a Breakeven analysis that will speculate when a business has paid for its operations and begins to make a profit.
[Recommended Reading: SBA Loan Programs]
Regardless of whether you’re self-funding your business or using other forms of capital, such as loans, grants, or equity financing, the SBA has a wide variety of information so that you know what your options are and can make an informed decision.
Help you market your business
Once your business is up and running, how do you actually get it in front of customers? The SBA can help.
[Recommended reading: “Developing a Marketing Plan“]
The Administration explains the importance of a detailed marketing plan, as well as providing marketing budgets and a slew of outside resources that can answer your strategy questions.
Other great business resources
In the unlikely event SBA.gov cannot help you, consider the following excellent resources:
- “Best Small Business Resources,” Squidoo
- “Starting a Business,” IRS.gov
- “LLC, S Corp, and C Corps: Comparison Chart,” Click&Inc
- The Sales Lion, marketing blog and consulting services
Do you have a great experience with the SBA to share? Or another great business resource you’d like to see added to the list? Leave us a comment!