Resources By Topic:
General | Green Business | News/Media | Inventions/Intellectual Property | Trademarks/Copyrights | Import/Export | Financing | Business Planning | Government | Legal/Taxes | Human Resources/Payroll | California Businesses | Documents/Forms | Other
Checklist for Starting a Business – Tips and tricks for starting a business in California.
Business.USA.Gov - Official business tools and resources of the U.S. Government.
SBDCNet - Business information, help, and examples.
SBA Office of Advocacy - An independent voice for small business within the federal government, the watchdog for the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) and the source of small business statistics.
SBA's Women's Business Center - Find the Women's Business Center, designed to assist women in starting and growing small businesses, nearest you.
SCORE - Senior Core Of Retired Executives is the nation’s largest network of volunteer, expert business mentors, with more than 10,000 volunteers in 300 chapters.
Green: California Green Business Network - Free Sustainability Consultation, Networking Opportunities and Marketing for Local Certified Green Businesses. Learn efficient practices that lead to cost savings and consumer loyalty. Rebates up to $1,000 help businesses of all shapes and sizes buy and operate sustainably. The program is free and businesses receive marketing and invitations to exclusive networking events.
The 100 Most Underrated Small Business Blogs - A list of 100 underrated small business blogs that compile original, unique, and invaluable content on a regular basis, despite being lesser known.
The Wall Street Journal - Start-up information and databases of businesses for sale and venture capital. Wealth in the form of money or assets, taken as a sign of the financial strength of an individual, organization, or nation, and assumed to be available for development or investment.
Inc.com - The online magazine for entrepreneurs and small business owners.
Entrepreneurship.org - Innovative educational tools and informative resources covering the latest issues and insights affecting entrepreneurs.
Inventing 101 - Free Online Course By Stephen Paul Gnass
How to protect your invention while pitching it. - From protecting your inventions, ideas, and product names to the public domain and fair use rules, you can find everything about intellectual property in articles and information here.
U.S. Patent and Trademark Office- Information, research and registration of U.S. patents.
California Secretary of State - The Secretary of State’s office maintains registration and all updates of California state trademarks and service marks.
U.S. Copyright Office - Research and register a copyright.
Six Steps to Begin Exporting - A fact sheet from the SBA Office of International Trade that explains how to begin exporting.
SBA Exporting - SBA provides counseling, training and financing to small businesses looking to increase sales and profit by taking their businesses global.
Office of International Trade - Many exported and imported products are regulated by federal agencies. If you export or import the following types of products, you may be required to obtain specific licenses and permits or complete additional paperwork.
Export.gov - The primary federal government exporting site to better serve beginning exporters.
Centers for International Trade Development (CITDs) - CITDs are the state's top source of trade assistance. CITDs offer a variety of free or low-cost programs & services to assist local companies in doing business abroad. These include one-on-one technical assistance and consulting, market research, training and educational programs, trade leads and special events.
Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) Codes - If you know the SIC code for your business or industry, you can research employment, productivity, import/export, etc., for that industry. SIC codes were established in the 1930s primarily to help measure and compare statistical information.
North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) - A more detailed classification system that covers the U.S., Mexico, and Canada, NAICS codes allow for closer comparisons than SIC codes. Almost all business research is easier if you know your SIC and NAICS codes (some agencies and publications, including the SEC, still use SIC).
Tradeport - Comprehensive international trade information, trade leads, and company databases. Guides you through the export process.
Business Loan Application Checklist – Use this checklist to make sure you have the typical items required for any small business loan application.
Grants.gov - A good site to use when searching for Federal grants funding.
SBA Loan Programs - SBA offers a variety of loan programs for very specific purposes. Take some time to study the programs described on this site to see if you qualify to participate.
SAFE-BIDCO - State-owned, non-bank financial assistance. Access to federal and state loan programs for small businesses.
National Venture Capital Association Member Directory - The NVCA serves as the definitive resource for venture capital data and unites its member firms through a full range of professional services.
SBIR/STTR Funding - Can be used to pay for research and development for innovative companies.
Start and Manage Your Business - SBA's website has resources for helping you, including templates for planning a business and advice blogs.
Bplans.com Sample plans and writing tips.
CalGOLD - Offers direct internet links and contact information to state, local, regional, and federal permitting authorities for more information. Assists you in finding appropriate permit information for your business.
Business Dictionary.com - It can be hard to understand the associated terms and concepts. With over 20,000 definitions, search this site for a specific term, or choose a general category and read a definition for any word.
SCORE - The Service Corp of Retired Executives offers informational sites along with online expertise in starting and owning a business.
Business Matchmaking - The naton's premier public-private initiative supporting procurement opportunities for small business in every industry.
California Department of General Services - Central location for businesses wanting to do business with the State of California. Information about minority certification, etc.
How to Do Business With California State Government - Brochure from the California Department of General Services explaining the four-step process.
Finding Government Customers - Contracting opportunities listed by the SBA.
Minority Business Development Agency - Web portal dedicated to helping small businesses benefit from minority certifications.
Federal Business Opportunities - The single government point-of-entry (GPE) for Federal government procurement opportunities over $25,000. Government buyers are able to publicize their business opportunities by posting information directly to FedBizOpps via the Internet and commercial vendors seeking Federal markets for their products and services can search, monitor, and retrieve opportunities solicited by the entire Federal contracting community.
Forming a corporation in California - An outline of the steps you need to follow in order to form a corporation (specifically, a "C corporation") in California.
FindLaw's Small Business Law - legal information, guides, sample forms, and other legal resources.
What New Business Owners Need to Know About Federal Taxes - IRS links to basic federal tax information for people who are starting a business, as well as information to assist in making basic business decisions.
California Tax Service Center - Forms and services you need as a California taxpayer.
Nolo - Nolo is the nation’s leading provider of do-it-yourself legal solutions for consumers and small businesses.
Bay Area Council - The Bay Area Council is a business-sponsored, public-policy advocacy organization for the nine-county Bay Area. It proactively advocates for a strong economy, a vital business environment, and a better quality of life for everyone.
California Chamber of Commerce - The California Chamber of Commerce is the largest, broad-based business advocate working at the state and federal levels to influence government actions affecting all California business. This site links to local chambers of commerce.
California Department of Consumer Affairs — Licensing and Permit Information - Information on types of state licenses required and how to obtain them. DCA licenses in more than 100 business and 200 professional categories, including doctors, dentists, contractors, cosmetologists and automotive repair facilities. It includes 40 regulatory entities that establish minimum qualifications and levels of competency for licensure. They also license, register, or certify practitioners, investigate complaints and discipline violators.
California Department of Finance - This web site provides economic forecasts, county profiles and economic indicators for the state’s fiscal matters.
California Electronic Job Listing Service - This California state service is an Internet system for linking employer job lists and job seeker resumes.
California Employer Advisory Council - The CEAC and local Employer Advisory Councils (EAC) are recognized and accepted by employers and government as the premier information resources for the employer perspective on employment and other workforce development issues.
California Employment Development Department - A direct link to job placement and referrals, unemployment insurance, disability insurance, employment and training, labor market information, employment taxes and more.
California Employment Training Panel - ETP is a California State agency that funds training that meets the needs of employers for skilled workers and the need of workers for good, long-term jobs.
California Healthcare Foundation - Everything small business owners and their advisors need to know about offering health insurance. An unbiased resource on cost estimates, tax savings, coverage options, legal rights, and more.
California Labor Market Information - Information by geographical area, subject or industry including occupational and career information, employment by industry, wages, and industrial classifications.
Financial Templates - This Excel workbook has a 12 month P&L statement, creates a breakeven analysis, a cash flow projection, and a balance sheet from the data you enter into the P&L. It is based on the handouts from our Financial Pre-Venture Workshop.
Living Wage Estimate - This is an excel spreadsheet where you can enter your personal expenses and the spreadsheet will estimate how much you need to make each month to cover your financial oblibations. It can also calculate how much cash flow per hour you need to cover your draw and taxes.
State Small Business Guide - This publication identifies the key sites for small businesses interested in doing business with the state and finding financial resources offered by the state government.
Contracting with the California State University System - Information needed to contract with California State University system.
Knowthis.com - A meta-site with links to marketing-related topics.
FaxZero - Send faxes for free to anywhere in the U.S. and Canada.
FreeConference – Free conference calls and free online meetings with HD audio, video, and screen share.
Costs of Merchant Processing – An overview of the cost drivers for merchant processing; describes how merchant processors categorize merchants and defines the most common types of fees assessed by merchant processors.
EMV Chip Informational Webinar - Learn all about EMV chip technology: what chip technology is, how it works, what the impacts are to merchants who accept payment cards at their businesses, and what these businesses need to do to be prepared.
Shopify's Free Business Resources - Shopify offers free business tools to help you run your business. Currently there are 21 tools to assist small business with creating templates for bills of lading, shipping labels, purchase orders to calculators for business loans, profit margins and advertising campaigns.
U.S. Census Information - Very useful census data available for market research.
U.S. Department of Labor - The Department of Labor provides compliance assistance to small business through “elaws”, an interactive exchange that allows small business owners to ask questions about labor laws.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency - The EPA offers small business advice on how to keep the environment clean and how to comply with environmental regulations.
U.S. Federal Trade Commission - The U.S. Federal Trade Commission enforces federal consumer protection laws that prevent fraud, deception and unfair business practices. The FTC offers creative, practical, plain-language business education publications that are a cost-effective and business-friendly way to obtain compliance with the law.
U.S. Small Business Administration - Valuable information on federal programs for small businesses as well as loan program details. Complete listing of SBDC’s throughout the country.