The National e-Commerce Extension Initiative
eNews: The National e-Commerce Extension Initiative

The Business Start–Up Edition

So you have been thinking about starting your e-businesses for some time now, but have not been sure of your first steps? This edition of eNews (no. 41) is dedicated to the new e-entrepreneur, and it is full of resources to help you make more informed decisions before your products go online or your Web site becomes operational. These resources and articles will allow small e-commerce based businesses to move forward with tools that will ultimately guarantee some success. Enjoy.

Best Industries for Starting a Business, 2011

by Christine Lagorio

Hot start-ups in the coming year will likely be thinking outside of Silicon Valley. It's not that technology and software are on their ways out; rather, a softly stabilizing economy has heightened consumer confidence and opened up growth in areas such as brick-and-mortar retail, boutique consulting firms and education companies, industry data from three private research firms show. Click here for all the details.

Five steps for getting your business up and running successfully.

If you're reading this, it means you're interested about starting a business. Now it's time to focus your entrepreneurial spirit using the following five steps.

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Starting a Small Business 101: The Essential Steps

Thinking of Starting a Small Business? Here's Where to Start

by Darrell Zahorsky

Starting a small business requires determination, motivation and know-how. Here are the critical steps to provide you with the know-how to have a successful small business startup:

Starting a Business: Information from the IRS

Listed below are links to basic federal tax information for people who are starting a business, as well as information to assist in making basic business decisions. The list should not be construed as all-inclusive. Other steps may be appropriate for your specific type of business. Information about specific industries can be found on the Industries/Professions Web page.

For information regarding state-level requirements for starting and operating a business, please refer to your state's Web site.

Starting a Business

Recommended Reading for Small Businesses

Know Your Industry Before You Start Your Business

by Tim Berry

You need to explain the type of business you're in. You'll be expected to explain the general state of your industry and the nature of the business, especially if your plan inclues going outside your company to banks or investors.

Whether you're a service business, manufacturer, retailer, or some other type of business, you should do an Industry Analysis, describing:

  • Industry Participants
  • Distribution Patterns
  • Competition and Buying Patterns

Click here to read the full article.

Ecommerce Start Up Tips

by Adam B Motta

Starting an e-commerce store for the first time may seem to be an overwhelming task. Most owners do not know how to setup or develop their own store, but these days, there are hundreds of shopping cart platforms to choose from. In almost every circumstance, go with a proven, stable shopping cart as opposed to a custom developed one. Custom carts, which are much more expensive, are often buggy and lack the proper extensions you may want. Access the complete listing of E-commerce Start Up Tips.

5 Ways to Use Text Messaging to Boost Sales

Text message marketing is a low-cost way to get deals into your customers' hands to drive sales. Texts are more convenient than email or print coupons, so it's no surprise that they're effective. Coupons sent via text message are redeemed eight times more often than those sent via email, says David Wachs, founder and president of Cellit, a mobile marketing company in Chicago. Click here for the full article.

4 Ways to Encourage Innovation From Within

You can't think of everything, so why try? Ask your employees to help discover customer service improvements, new products and efficiencies for your small business. After all, some of the best ideas come can from the trenches. To encourage innovation among your staff, consider these four strategies.

Matchmaking for Web Start-Ups and Investors

by Malia Wollan

In February 2009, Mr. Ravikant and Babak Nivi, a fellow investor and start-up mentor, started AngelList, a networking Web site that substitutes endless pitch meetings with Internet-based matchmaking.

AngelList, akin to online dating sites, allows eager start-up companies to pair up with investors looking to buy into the next Twitter or Facebook. More than 1,300 investors have already joined the site, including nearly 400 venture capitalists. The rest are angel investors, the name given to those who buy a stake of a company with their own money. Follow this link for complete details.

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eXtension Entrepreneurship Webinar Series

Food Safety for Farmers Market Vendors
April 11, 2013
Londa Nwadike, University of Vermont Extension Food Safety Specialist

Tracking Sales to Learn What Customers Really Think
May 9, 2013
Mary Peabody, UVM Extension

Are you a Supermarket Vendor or a Super Market Vendor?
June 13, 2013
Ginger Myers, UMD Extension Marketing Specialist

All webinars will air monthly on the second Thursday at 2 p.m. (ET); 1p.m. (CT); noon (MT); 11a.m. (PT). No pre-registration is required and there is no fee to participate. About 10 minutes prior to the start time simply go the Adobe Connect Pro meeting room at . You will be presented with a login screen that has an "Enter as Guest" option. Enter your full name then click "Enter Room" to join the conference. You will be able to hear the audio directly from your computer’s speakers.

For more information and archives on the Webinar Series, please visit our Webinar page.