/r/smallbusiness

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This sub is not for advertisements! Questions and answers about starting, owning, and growing a small business only.

This sub is not for advertisements! Questions and answers about starting, owning, and growing a small business.


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Rules:

  • Post only questions about small business.

r/smallbusiness is a question and answer subreddit. You ask a question about starting, owning, and growing a small business and the community answers.

NO business promotion, lead generation, rants, info-tainment, success stories or unsolicited instructional texts, treatise, or how-to's are permitted in posts.

Note: You can post own experiences in the new weekly stickied or pinned share-your-experience thread.

  • No blog links and blog content.

Blogspam has been defined very early in r/smallbusiness as content that maybe text articles, images, or video. Practically all content, small business-related or not.

Exceptions
Allowed are links or quotes in comments and replies that are relevant to and come normally in the course of discussions.

  • No business promotion posts.

No business promotion posts are allowed. Promote your business in the weekly Promote-your-business thread only. Offers of free services under the pretense of 'building your portfolio' are considered business promotion, and not permitted in posts.

Exceptions You can promote your business in a relevant reply to a post or comment in other threads.

  • No Personal Attacks, Trolling, or Toxicity.

Exceptions None, no exceptions.


Related Subreddits


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Location Specific Small Business Subreddit

/r/smallbusiness

1,652,128 Subscribers

1

Showcase Your Products, Share Your Story, Find Talent , Grow - Together

Share your product with below 👇 format information Product Name : Product Description : Founder name : Founder social media Link : Website name : What problem solving your product:

1 Comment
2024/05/12
10:34 UTC

1

Help with bookkeeping

Hey all,,

I'm currently selling cars as a side hobby. I'm wanting to know if anyone else here does that and what books are you using to keep track of your work.

I've got detailed receipts for all the repairs/maintenance via paper receipts grouped by cars/jobs and a spreadsheet that replicates this.

I want to move it to an accounting platform. I've trialed a few and I can't seem to find any where I can create a job for an individual car/ project and track all costs and income related to that project except xero which is mucho expenny.

Sick of maintaining 2 books and having to do a 3rd at tax time for an accountant.

I've done tax accounting for a year so Im happy to maintain it on on my own.

Any alternative suggestions?

From australia btw :)

2 Comments
2024/05/12
10:21 UTC

5

Prices Soar, Wallets Thin, Yet Restaurants/Events Are Packed—What's Going On?

Does anyone else see this kind of contradictory behaviour?

So, I run a consumer goods business with three locations in a capital city in the middle of Europe. Despite the economic challenges, our sales are hitting new records, even after raising prices due to increased costs and inflation. Surprisingly, it's still fairly easy to find employees (it's a very seasonal therefore uncertain job), although their motivation seems low.

What puzzles me is the contrast with the general economic sentiment. Many people I know are struggling with basic expenses, cutting back, and generally spending less. There is a lot of uncertainty in the air. Yet, when I look around at restaurants and events, they are bustling and everything is priced high. How does all this even fit together? Nothing adds up, and I'm completely puzzled.

Theory 1: People are perhaps using their savings to enjoy life as much as they can, despite the economic challenges.

Theory 2: Maybe I'm in an economic bubble where it seems everyone is struggling, but actually, a majority are doing well, adapting easily to inflation.

Is this normal, or is there something else at play that I don't see?

18 Comments
2024/05/12
10:19 UTC

0

How to send 200k monthly without paying crazy fees?

Hey there,

I’ve recently moved to Ireland (although I am a British citizen)

My business is now located in Ireland so I need an Irish Business Bank.

I invoice roughly 100-200 k per month and now have the nice bonus of getting 12.5% corporation tax in Ireland over the nasty 25% in UK.

Every month I need to invoice my UK employer in pounds from my new Irish bank and then transfer it back into my UK account so I can split across my investment portfolio.

What would be the best and cheapest way to invoice a uk company in pounds from an Irish banking app like Revolut and secondly , what would be the most cost effective way to then send it back to my uk holding accounts for my investment portfolio. (The money legally has to come into my Irish account first for anyone who suggests going uk employer to my uk account)

Any help much appreciated!

13 Comments
2024/05/12
09:44 UTC

1

Started a cafe business recently

Any tips on how to attract customers from a 4th floor cafe?? It has a great view and i brew good quality at a cheap price but not many are interested...

3 Comments
2024/05/12
09:38 UTC

0

Software, Life, AI and Business

Hey! I'm a software developer from Lithuania, with almost 3 years of experience at IBM. Work life's decent, but corporate nonsense is starting to get to me. I'm considering starting my own side hustle or small business, something lean to provide extra income.

Right now, I'm on the lookout for pain points in the B2B sector, something I could help other businesses with. YouTube's flooded with videos from AI automation agencies. What's your take on this AI trend? Are you integrating GenAI into your own businesses? Have you encountered these agencies, and if so, did you find their services helpful?

Also, what about AI-based products? Have you tried any? I know big corporates, especially IBM, are heavily focused on AI, but I'm curious about what smaller businesses are doing. Thanks!

1 Comment
2024/05/12
09:35 UTC

0

Small online business

I really like the idea of starting a small business that I can run from my laptop. Preferably something where I can work at hours that suit me. A business where all I have to do is source a product and sell it while also responding to emails but no phone calls sounds ideal. I don't know how to start though. I have a lot of free time right now so if it took 6-12 months to get return on my investment that's fine as long as I can see progress within the business, I also have money to get started but I don't want to invest in anything that requires a lot of starting capital (would rather start with a small investment plus sweat equity and then just reinvest capital until it's at a level where I can pay myself while still seeing growth).

Any ideas or tips are appreciated.

5 Comments
2024/05/12
09:05 UTC

0

Medical equipment

Hi! Is here anyone who's interested in a few medical equipment (cheap) products reselling in Europe? I'm looking for contacts in Europe (pharmacy owners or med.equipment store owners). It's an already working business, I'd like to make it bigger and that's why I'm looking for new contacts from other countries.

1 Comment
2024/05/12
07:47 UTC

1

Pos transaction fees

Hi everyone !

I have small bussiness, and i used td terminal as pos and they charge me 2.5% each sale, I got call from new company and they said they dont charge anyfees only flat rate of 60$ each month and no contract month to month ! I dont know if that can be true ! I dont know but i feel its scam, also i met someone from that company and we will meet again on monday, please help me out if you got same experince before thankk you !

2 Comments
2024/05/12
06:59 UTC

1

Small business investment

Uk based Unsure if the right sub but here goes. I've been asked to invest in a small business (construction - gov contracts). I'm looking at footing 20-25% of the money to make this viable. What returns (%) should I expect/ask for when negotiating. I'd be a silent partner with only a financial interest in thr business.

If this is thr wrong sub for this can you recommend a more suitable sub. Thankyou

1 Comment
2024/05/12
06:50 UTC

4

Is it recommended to purchase other domains for my company's website?

Like, my company name dot org, dot us, and dot co?

Secondary Question.

I am in the US. Most or all of my business will be in the US. However, I will be targeting Espanol speaking customers in the US a little later, kind of phase two. Should I translate my company name, which is an English phrase, into Espanol and buy that web domain as well? Or just stick with the English phrase?

I plan on having advertising down the road in Espanol. It will all be initially in English.

12 Comments
2024/05/12
05:29 UTC

1

LLC for a Home Bakery in California

Hi, I know that I need to get protection for myself and my assests from someone possibly suing me. However, I just started my business and looking at an LLC it is $800 in California. Is this something I should just bite the bullet and buy or should I get some other type of insurance?

5 Comments
2024/05/12
05:23 UTC

20

Moms business doing great, mine not...

This is more of a rant.

Ive noticed my moms business (dog breeding) does quite well. Mine ( steel fab) not so much.

She doesn't know anything about advertising except for FB ads, which she runs blindly. Has a shit website, does zero business related reading/studying, has no network/no events or promotional and makes about 200k a year.

I run targeted ads, am everywhere and anywhere telling people about us, have a newsletter, killer social media, but I am struggling.

I ask my mom all the time for advice and she's like " i don't know". It's more funny that the amount of effort we put into varies so much and she is smoking me financially.

I guess some people chose the right business...

53 Comments
2024/05/12
04:59 UTC

2

What is the best way to advertise digital products for sale?

Looking into starting an online store selling digital products. How should I advertise? Thank you to anyone who replies!

3 Comments
2024/05/12
04:42 UTC

0

Struggling to select platform for selling digital products

I want to sell digital products (mainly canva designs). The problem is I lived in a country where paypal and stripe not available. Then I researched about lemon squeezy, it works but there payment procedure is too complex. I found 2checkout works, but their verification process is too hard. Then I found system.io, it has lot of tools which fulfill my requirements, they offer free sales funnel. But, I still got puzzles about system.io, since no one recommend it in other reddit post. Please give me some advice about how to sell digital product without stripe, also please give me any tips about 2checkout and system.io. Thanks

4 Comments
2024/05/12
04:17 UTC

2

Suitability of a new, sorta generic name for my business.

I purchased a business in October, and one of the terms of the deal is that I had to change the name of the business within one year (they owned two locations, and I purchased one of them) We settled on a name which is somewhat generic, but doing a casual search I don't see anyone else using the name. Rebranding will be costly, and this will be the store's forever name... How can I make sure I don't run into problems with another company once I rebrand?

3 Comments
2024/05/12
03:55 UTC

1

Gas station

Hello everyone,

For my gas station owners, how did you find your gas station? I have been considering starting a gas station for a bit now but I can't find any (either too expensive or too far). I have found many good ones but they are too far away so if you can tell me how you found it could you please share it here. Thank you.

2 Comments
2024/05/12
03:34 UTC

1

Would you refund this? Or how would you handle? Thanks

So, I have a question for you guys about refunds for digital courses.

I'm very good about refunds - I launched my coaching business almost 3 years ago and if anyone buys my courses and doesn't like it within 30 days I always give them a full refund. The only time I'd had any issues in the last 3 years was when a guy bought 2 courses and it was past 30 days, and he asked for a refund, and I issued him 50% because when I checked the logins, he's gone through the whole course x2 and it was past 30 days.

Anyway, 3 years, no major problems, recently I had a guy buy one of my courses, he asked for a refund so I gave him 100% refund. He then writes me and says he thinks the other course is better for him and I replied ok and he buys it. I check the course logins and he's logged in probably 10+ times on the first course and twice on the 2nd course.

I had bad feeling about this and what do you know 2 weeks later he asks for a full refund again. I refer him to the TOS which I had previously updated specifically to avoid issues like this:

"If you have already been refunded once, please note that if you purchase the same product again or purchase additional products from HIS, additional refunds cannot be granted. This is in place to prevent theft and abuse of accessing the product’s value and then requesting money back multiple times.

You cannot get a refund for a 2nd digital product after requesting a refund for the original product then buying a 2nd product after the initial refund.

To prevent intellectual theft and/or people accessing the product and refunding, you cannot refund more than 1 purchase within 30 business days."

The guy keeps emailing me, this time saying he thinks that because he only viewed a few lessons he only owes me $50 (the product is $397).

I know legally I'm in the right due to well written TOS but he can file a paypal dispute and it's a super annoying process, although in the past I've won against cases like this. It just takes forever and Paypal puts a hold on those funds.

I'm not sure what to do, I'm usually a very fair guy but I feel taken advantage of here. I'm not 100% sure but I think also he might be a content thief although I have no proof of that.

Am I in the wrong? What would you do if you were in my position?

Thanks

7 Comments
2024/05/12
03:25 UTC

1

How to generate sales for "boutique t-shirt side business"?

Hi, I have always had passion about math, science, technology, riddles, etc. I also love nice vector drawings. Decided to design a few nice looking t-shirts and created a shopify online-store. This by no means would be my main job, just something on a side. Actually, if it even covers its own expenses that would be great!

Here is the site. What would you suggest me to do to drive some sales? Would appreciate any input on this: https://scienceartnook.com/

I tried running FB ads, and it looks so complex that I gave up on it.

I tried Instagram instead (https://www.instagram.com/science_art_nook/). Boosted 2 posts for $60 total and got 1 sale, yeyyyy!!!, getting $4 income (not counting the 60 bucks)!

What can I do better? Btw, I couldn't make the Instagram ad (and post) link to the site for the person to click and perform the checkout. It would only boost the post. The person that sees the ad would have to click on the profile, then click on the main site and see all t-shirt designs. Actually, the single sale was for a design which was not advertised.

Thanks

2 Comments
2024/05/12
02:59 UTC

2

What should payroll fees and taxes come to?

Currently I have Paychex. I was using a local payroll company before and after a couple months they ended up selling to Paychex. I do not remember paying as much in payroll or taxes tho. I have 1 full time employee and two part time employees. They get paid bi-weekly. I just ran payroll between all them for around $2,100 and am getting charged almost $900 for taxes and fees. Had no idea about this and had I known I probably would have held off hiring the full time employee for a bit. It looks like $180 for fees, and $710 for taxes? It is really confusing how they lay it out. I understand I pay for half of the taxes the employee usually pays and gets takin out of their check but I am having a hard time understanding how its this much or if this is accurate. I also live in Taxachusetts I mean Massachusetts if that changes things.

11 Comments
2024/05/12
02:52 UTC

1

Question on business line and wireless connectivity.

I travel for business and have a Verizon business account. Got upsold the CSG m106 LTE Gateway router because the salesman said it would allow me better connectivity to work from my truck or hotel rooms than simply using my work phone hotspot (iPhone 15 ProMax). Got the router for free (told me it retails for $200) and I just pay the monthly for the line ($20 iirc). Does this make sense? It’s only LTE and can’t do 5g. He told me eventually they’re going to offer that and they’ll upgrade my router, but I’m not up on those types of things and highly doubt they’ll just call me and tell me they’re happy to upgrade me. Pros-Cons? Happy for any advice on this. I will say the one thing he said was that I’ll get better signal because of the hard core external antennas, but I feel the LTE may be limiting.

1 Comment
2024/05/12
02:49 UTC

1

Looking to setup AI Customer Agent for business for free

Hi r/smallbusiness

Currently I am setting up AI Customer Agent that can help your customer with business inquires. I am looking for business that interested to try it out.

I will set it up according to your needs for free, I only needed feedback as return.

Let me know if anyone interested to try it out.

1 Comment
2024/05/12
02:42 UTC

1

The Importance of SBA's Small Business Size Standards

Small Businesses are the unsung heroes of our economy. To help these businesses navigate the market, the Small Business Administration (SBA) offers valuable resources, including the Small Business Size Standards Table. This table helps small businesses understand where they stand in the market landscape.

What Are Small Business Size Standards?

The Small Business Size Standards are guidelines that categorize businesses based on their size, considering factors like annual revenue and number of employees. These standards vary across industries to reflect the diverse nature of businesses. To download a free copy of the Table of Size Standards, visit the SBA site at: https://www.sba.gov/document/support-table-size-standards.

Notice that some NAICS codes have a dollar size standard and others have a number of employees standard. Here is some foreshadowing of things to come…SDB Growth will post some additional news articles to discuss how the SBA calculates annual receipts and number of employees so you will know where your company falls within the size standards. We know some companies that will do everything possible to remain a small business concern and they actually throttle their growth or make adjustments to stay under the limits. This strategy can keep their company as a big fish in a small pond instead of being the little fish in the big ocean of unrestricted competitions (not small business set-asides). Not only will it impact a company’s size standard but it could also lead to early graduation from an SDB program, such as the 8(a) program. The 8(a) program is a 9 year business development program, but a company can “size out” early based on exceeding the size standards.

Access to Opportunities

One significant benefit of the Size Standards Table is that it helps small businesses determine their eligibility for government programs, contracts, and assistance initiatives. Many of these opportunities are specifically reserved for small businesses, so knowing where they fit in the size spectrum is important.

Promoting Fair Competition

By categorizing businesses based on size, the Size Standards Table ensures fair competition within industries. It levels the playing field, giving smaller enterprises a fair chance when competing against larger companies for contracts and opportunities.

Getting the Right Support

Understanding their business size helps entrepreneurs access tailored support, such as loans and educational resources. This targeted assistance addresses the specific needs and challenges faced by small businesses, supporting their growth and sustainability.

Making Informed Decisions

Knowing where they stand in terms of size helps business owners make strategic decisions. Whether they're planning to expand, seeking financing, or entering new markets, this understanding provides valuable insights that align with their growth objectives.

Keeping Up with Change

The SBA regularly reviews and updates its Size Standards Table to ensure it remains relevant in a changing business landscape. This ongoing evaluation reflects shifts in market dynamics and economic trends, ensuring the standards accurately reflect business size.

Conclusion

In essence, the SBA's Size Standards Table empowers small businesses and strengthens the economy. It helps them access opportunities, promotes fair competition, provides tailored support, facilitates informed decision-making, and stays adaptable in a dynamic marketplace. Small businesses are vital to our economic health, and initiatives like the Size Standards Table highlight the commitment to their success.

SDB Growth has significant experience developing Small Disadvantaged Businesses and supporting business development. We can support your application to enter the SBA’s SDB program, help you win sole-source contracts, or even help you market to the Federal Government. We have supported the award of over 30 sole-source awards. Contact SDB Growth at https://sdbgrowth.com/ for more information.

#8a #SBA #sdbgrowth #GOVCON #smallbusiness #WOSB #HUBZONE #SDVOSB #QUORA

 

1 Comment
2024/05/12
02:35 UTC

4

I am about to apply for a lease for a brick and mortar retail shop. What tips do you have?

Found a space I like in a good walkable artsy tourist town. I've scoped it out for traffic 3 different times now on my own and once with the property manager, and obsessively charted its history on google maps. Today I sent a message saying i was interested proceeding with the application process.

I am not familiar with the process or requirements for commercial leasing, and I felt kinda dumb talking to the property manager the other day, like I should have had better questions. They seeemed to like me and my vision for my shop (neighborhood toy store), but I am pretty sure they would have been able to tell I was new at the whole business owner gig even if i hadn't straight up told them.

I have over 2 decades of experience in retail, toys specifically, sales, inventory, and management. I am just a little lost on these other business aspects like leasing and being any type of "professional" haha.

I know of course they will want financial info, but I am not sure what that includes. They will want to see proof of funding for some amount of time, Iguess.

I have a detailed business plan, and an up to date resume. I already have a million dollar business insurance policy and workers comp policy because I had a pop up shop up til a couple weeks ago that ran for about 2 months.

So, what is in store for me? How long does the application process typically take? Do they do a background check (nothing to worry about, just curious). What reasons would have been inclined to deny my application (I don't have bad credit and i think my funding will be sufficient)?

Do i need a lawyer right now? I have worked with one before, and would use them again. Is negotiating the terms of the lease common or do most people take them mostly as they are?

Would it be weird to ask if they have other people interested or applying?

When I met the porperty manager should I have given him any type of physical info about me/my biz other than a business card?

Would the property manager be a good one to ask for recs on painters/contractors or would thst look bad?

The property manager is local and had looked after this building for about 30 years and has other long term tenants, some of whom i met, and they rave about him. He seems like a kindly soul and seemed to want me to succeed in the space. We chatted for about a half hour about toys, me, retail, the town, all kinds of things. I asked a fair number of questions myself.

The interior has been redone and is basically retail ready. I'd paint and put up some slatwall pretty much.

Any help on any of these questions and concerns would be so very appreciated. Thank you!

Edit to add: This is the 2nd location I have seen with a realtor or property manager, and is one of a dozen i have scoped out in person on my own from the outside.

27 Comments
2024/05/12
02:12 UTC

27

Making a logo

For those like me who aren’t artistically gifted, how did you design your logo?

8 Comments
2024/05/12
02:07 UTC

1

Healthcare, reasonable comp and paying yourself in SCorp

If you are an LLC electing S corp status and you are taking a reasonable salary do you deduct the health insurance from the salary? I know the health insurance paid for the owner is reported on the W2.

Say you figure out that reasonable comp is $60,000 and the business pays $10,000 for health care would you adjust salary payments to be $50,000 since that $10,000 is technically considered salary or would you leave it at $60,000 salary payments? I don't want to screw up on my reasonable comp.

2 Comments
2024/05/12
01:23 UTC

1

How did you know when to hire someone to keep your books as opposed to doing it yourself?

Hey all! New to the thread. I'm just started a lawncare business. We have about 20 accounts rn that we service every week (each account pays once per week) and I'm currently keeping my own books in excel. It's been pretty boring and tedious, but its working fine. I'm trying to figure out how viable it is to keep doing it myself, and when I should switch over. Are there any business owners out there who keep there own books? Does it work for you? What are your biggest challenges?

Is it worth my time to keep doing it alone? Or will it end up costing me in the long run (too much time away from sales , growing the company etc.).

3 Comments
2024/05/12
01:03 UTC

3

Business with the same name

I have a small media company created in Nov 2017 and our focus is our city. We just found out about another media company with a very similar name. Issue is that they were a magazine back in the 70’s. It had a short run and never made it out of the 70’s. A woman who worked on it purchased the company towards the end of its run. Did nothing with it till 2017, she created a website called “theirname”digital.com because at the time I owned the main domain. They still operate putting out an article every now and then, have a small following also very low traffic. It’s specific to an entertainment lifestyle. Their parent company is an LLC based out of L.A. called “theirname” media holdings. Now here we are looking to grow, we’re creating a parent company and then this company will be a brand under that blanket. Does this become an issue going further. Should we just pivot and change names or could we go on using our name.

ADDED: they are in Cali we are in Texas but both looking at a national audience.

1 Comment
2024/05/12
00:58 UTC

0

When you hire someone and they quit the first day how do you deal with the hassle of having to hire someone else because you have start over again?

I’m running a business and I’m afraid to get rid of them because I know I’d have to go through the hassle of recruiting again while the company is understaffed.

9 Comments
2024/05/12
00:40 UTC

1

A 2 Field Form Business - AI

I've developed a website that features a straightforward form. Visitors can enter their email along with a brief description of a website idea they have in mind. Behind the scenes, I've integrated an AI web-generator tool that can bring these ideas to life based on a single prompt.

Once I receive their input, I collaborate with a designer to add some unique touches—like adjusting colors, swapping images, and crafting a creative logo. Then, I capture a screenshot of the website and share it with the clients. This draft can serve as a starting point or even the final product. The generated websites are built-in with contact forms or subscribing to newsletters to generate leads. When the website is transferred to the client, basic web-editor tools are available to change colors, text, images and also add/remove sections.

For complex needs, we offer the expertise of software engineers for custom requirements, at an additional cost, which is where we make our profit.

It's called pagepalooza.com - Do you think the website reflects the idea clearly? What do you think of the idea as a whole? We already have multiple clients and looking to grow the platform and start a big marketing ad campaign.

2 Comments
2024/05/12
00:24 UTC

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