Smart Stops on the Web

BY VINCE NOLAN AND AMELIA RASMUS

  

 
 
 
 
SMALL BUSINESS SITES
A SMALL BIZ POWERHOUSE
www.powerhomebiz.com
This Smart Stop offers plenty of resources to get your small business clients off to a good start. Check out the Financing a Business area for tips on controlling taxes and cash flow or read about the five basic rules of Internet marketing. See a glossary of business terms and free sample business plans. The site also has links to about 40 blog directories, which can help clients reach a wider market for their Web content.


ONE-STOP SHOP
http://smallbusiness.yahoo.com
You’ve used Yahoo for personal e-mailing, news headlines and stock prices; now you can visit Yahoo Small Business for information on opening a business and creating a professional Web site. Share 10 tips for new small businesses with your clients and learn about franchising opportunities. Other useful tools include package tracking, loan calculators and ZIP code lookup. There’s also a section on avoiding legal troubles with employees.

Big Small Biz Considerations
www.smartbiz.com
Visitors to this e-stop can register for free access to all its content, including sections on making the most of your Web site and keeping visitors from leaving. Learn how start-ups and small businesses can use blogs to their advantage. Download dozens of sample business forms and policies. Read discussions on whether you should buy or lease an automobile and 10 red flags that indicate potential overbilling of legal fees.

GET THE INSIDE INFO
www.publicityinsider.com
Visit the site of Bill Stoller, who has spent more than 20 years in public relations, to learn publicity secrets that can get your small business noticed. Learn how to write effective fact sheets, media alerts, press releases and pitch letters. Also get Internet publicity tips and advice from seasoned editors and reporters on story ideas the media want to hear.

WATCH AND LEARN
www.sbtv.com

Small Business Television is a TV network on the Web for entrepreneurs. Via video clips, a variety of experts show and tell you how to run your business, relay their success stories, offer tips on going global and provide information about conferences and associations. The site features clip categories for marketing, technology, money, law and more, as well as channels devoted to women and Hispanic business owners.

GENERAL INTEREST SITES
THE HIGH ROAD
http://ethics.iit.edu
Professionals interested in staying on the straight and narrow can find guidance at the Illinois Institute of Technology’s online Center for the Study of Ethics in the Professions. Research how to write a code of ethics for your firm, find links to user guides and read actual codes of ethics from various industries including communications, finance, law and management. Get case studies on business and finance ethics, as well as sample cases used in the 12th annual Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl.

TUITION TUTORIALS
www.salliemae.com
Personal financial planners will want to bookmark this Smart Stop for clients with children looking to pay college tuition. Find tips on saving for school, understanding costs and assessing financial need, as well as links to applications and checklists for loan programs. Find tools to estimate monthly payments and calculate savings. Also read Sallie Mae’s How to Pay for College: A Practical Guide for Families.

WIT AND WISDOM
www.taxtwist.com
Enrolled agent Eva Rosenberg’s Web site offers visitors a break from the usual tax rules and regulations with humorous anecdotes—the credit card company that kept billing a deceased customer for annual service charges—and inspirational tales such as the one about 9/11 victims. Also get a tax calendar with annual deadlines and a link to her other site, www.taxmama.com .

FOR THE JET SET
www.businesstravel.com
Find out how to deal with flight delays and remove stains from your favorite suit, all on the same site. You can read articles aimed at frequent flyers or book flights, rental cars and hotel rooms. Click to find business-info links, travel resources such as currency converters, and a list of foreign tourism bureaus.

HERE’S TO YOUR HEALTH
www.mayoclinic.com/health/working-life/WL99999
The Working Life section of the Mayo Clinic’s Web site offers plenty of advice to cure what ails you at the office. For example, the tips for maintaining work-life balance can help if you’re returning from maternity leave or have a sick child at home. You can also read articles that provide solutions to work-induced problems such as eye strain, stress and burnout. The On the Job link leads to a page of tools and topics that can help you make your career more rewarding or bridge the generation gap among employees. 

SPONSORED REPORT

How to make the most of a negotiation

Negotiators are made, not born. In this sponsored report, we cover strategies and tactics to help you head into 2017 ready to take on business deals, salary discussions and more.

VIDEO

Will the Affordable Care Act be repealed?

The results of the 2016 presidential election are likely to have a big impact on federal tax policy in the coming years. Eddie Adkins, CPA, a partner in the Washington National Tax Office at Grant Thornton, discusses what parts of the ACA might survive the repeal of most of the law.

QUIZ

News quiz: Scam email plagues tax professionals—again

Even as the IRS reported on success in reducing tax return identity theft in the 2016 season, the Service also warned tax professionals about yet another email phishing scam. See how much you know about recent news with this short quiz.