These 3 Entrepreneurs Share Tips for Overcoming E-Commerce Product Launch Obstacles

With consumers spending more than ever online, it’s no wonder why so many entrepreneurs are joining e-commerce marketplaces in droves. Consumers around the world spent $900 billion at online retailers in 2020, according to report from the Mastercard Economics Institute. Up to 30% of that shift is expected to be …

WJR Business Beat with Jeff Sloan: Valuable Mentoring Offered by SCORE (Episode 223)

On this morning’s WJR Business Beat, Jeff discusses an excellent resource for entrepreneurs who need free, high-quality coaching and mentoring: SCORE, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and a resource partner of the U.S. Small Business Administration. Tune in to the Business Beat, below, to learn more about the mentoring services offered …

3 Excellent Ways to Bootstrap Your Startup’s Product Launch

You’ve finally decided to embark on the entrepreneurial journey of your dreams and be your own boss. Congratulations! Now that you’re in the planning stages, you’ve likely started thinking about how you’ll fund your dream company. While bootstrapping isn’t for everyone, starting a business with your own funds keeps you …

4 things you should expect from your WooCommerce payments provider 

Let’s talk WooCommerce payments providers. The payment process is one of the most critical parts of the online shopping experience—your customer has browsed your store, made their selections, and is ready to checkout. It’s time to get paid! Now all you need is a quick, smooth checkout process for customers, …

Natasha Williams: A Miami tap dancer dreams of an entrepreneurial future

If you’ve seen a tap dancer perform in or around Miami, chances are it was Natasha Williams — or maybe one of her students. A resident of Little Havana, Natasha fell in love with tap when she started taking lessons at age seven. After attending a high school for the performing …

How to Be Lucky in Life

This is a follow-up to – You Don’t Have to Be the Best to Win Big in Life. In that post, I suggested that anyone can be successful by following a few guiding principles. One of these principles is to be lucky. Hmmm… You might be skeptical, but being lucky …

COVID-19 Accelerated Innovation: How Can Your Startup Embrace Change Moving Forward?

The COVID-19 pandemic was a catalyst that accelerated innovation and change in almost every industry. What used to take some businesses five years to accomplish remarkably took them only five months during the pandemic. From online grocery retailing to working at home remotely and shifting to an online model, businesses …

WJR Business Beat with Jeff Sloan: Tech Workers Continue Migration into the Midwest (Episode 222)

On this morning’s WJR Business Beat, Jeff shares a recent Axois survey indicating that young engineers and recent college graduates are looking to Miami, Houston and Philadelphia as hot spots to start a career, rather than San Fransisco, New York or Seattle. This news comes on the heels of last …

A Focus on the Basics: Must-Have Features for Your eCommerce Website

Building a website sometimes becomes a race to cram the most features into the final product. This rings especially true when it comes to eCommerce, where massive amounts of bells and whistles have become the standard. This methodology can produce mixed results. In some cases, all of the fancy functionality …

How to Maximize Your Profitable Growth in Your Chosen Market Segments

The following is excerpted from “Choose Your Customer: How to Compete Against the Digital Giants and Thrive” by Jonathan L.S. Byrnes and John S. Wass, pp. 141-145 (McGraw Hill, May 2021). You are what you sell. Your customers are the front-wheel drive that pulls you through your marketplace. All too …

WJR Business Beat with Jeff Sloan: National Retail Federation Predicts Strong 2021 (Episode 221)

On this morning’s WJR Business Beat, Jeff shares exciting news from the National Retail Federation (NRF): retail sales are beginning to rebound, and the NRF predicts a strong acceleration of the U.S. economy in 2021. Tune in to the Business Beat, below, to learn more about the National Retail Federation’s …

Clubhouse Explained and 4 Reasons Why Entrepreneurs Should Find an Invite

When you think about social media, what comes to mind first? It’s likely that Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn are your first thoughts. Perhaps you also thought about TikTok, Pinterest, YouTube or Reddit. It’s hard to keep up with the many new social media apps sprouting up on a regular …

What Do Software Startup Unicorns Like OneStream and StockX Have in Common?

OneStream and StockX are two of the most recent unicorns to emerge out of Detroit’s thriving startup ecosystem. OneStream provides B2B corporate performance management (CPM) software, while StockX offers resellers a marketplace to sell shoes, electronics and other products. Despite differences in their products and target audiences, the two companies …

Websites + Marketing: Increase your exposure with boosted posts

Social media is one of the most important tools in a small business owner’s toolbox. In addition to having a social presence, regularly posting to keep customers engaged is effective in spreading organic word-of-mouth — but making sure those same posts get maximum reach and visibility is just as essential. …

Websites + Marketing: Increase your exposure with boosted posts

Social media is one of the most important tools in a small business owner’s toolbox. In addition to having a social presence, regularly posting to keep customers engaged is effective in spreading organic word-of-mouth — but making sure those same posts get maximum reach and visibility is just as essential. …

These 4 Entrepreneurs Share Their Startup Stories on StartupNation Radio

On today’s episode of StartupNation Radio, Jeff interviews four entrepreneurs who share their startup stories: Tania Shah, Erin Nobles and Lisa Sigman of In The Know Legal; and Kristen Denzer of Tierra Encantada. StartupNation exclusive discounts and savings on Dell products and accessories: Learn more here Tune in to the …

Here’s Why Transformational Agility Drives Competitive Advantage in Business

What is true business agility? StartupNation exclusive discounts and savings on Dell products and accessories: Learn more here In today’s fast-moving global economy, business agility is paramount. New technologies are disrupting the business landscape. Customers, partners and regulators all have pressing priorities. Communication and collaboration are becoming ever more complex. …

WJR Business Beat with Jeff Sloan: Vroom Picks Detroit to Grow and Expand its Business (Episode 220)

On today’s Business Beat, Jeff welcomes back Ryan Landau, founder of Purpose Jobs, to discuss another hot startup company right here in the Midwest: Vroom, an e-commerce company that allows consumers to buy and sell cars online. The New York City-based company is opening up an engineering office right here in …

GoDaddy Q&A with fashion designer and Project Runway finalist Kelly Dempsey

Kelly Dempsey climbed the fashion ladder on season 14 of the hit show, “Project Runway.” The only self-taught designer that season, Kelly made it to the finale and showed off her fearless, unique style and creative approach to clothing. Show mentor Tim Gunn has even gone on record in a …

New E-Commerce Tool Yottled Helps Small Businesses Shift to Online Operations

E-commerce trends emerging from the pandemic From steel buying to online retail, e-commerce has quickly developed into a sophisticated new growth space for business due to the COVID-19 pandemic pushing business operations online. In fact, moving sales mostly online is now essential for many companies to stay in business. So …

Dell is Celebrating You This Small Business Month with Exclusive Member Savings

StartupNation readers save up to 50% off during Dell’s Small Business Month, running May 3 through May 26. From laptops, desktops and must-have accessories, StartupNation members save an extra 5% to 10% on Dell-branded solutions. Visit www.Dell.com/StartupNation to access these savings or call 855-900-5548  to chat with a Small Business …

Detroit’s Monica Wheat Strengthens Startup Ecosystem with Equality and Inclusion

A strategist, educator and venture developer, Southfield native Monica Wheat has dedicated her career to venture capital, but what truly sets her apart is her dedication to improving Detroit’s startup community and making it more inclusive to women and girls. When in high school, Wheat attended camps to learn about career …

WJR Business Beat with Jeff Sloan: The Midwest is Now a Hotbed for Startup Companies (Episode 218)

On this morning’s Business Beat, Jeff welcomes Ryan Landau, founder of Purpose Jobs, to discuss the rise of startup companies in the Midwest. Landau is dedicated to building the startup ecosystem in the Midwest by connecting startups with top talent, and has a particular passion for Detroit tech startups. Tune …

11 Top Entrepreneurs Share the Best Advice They’ve Ever Received from a Mentor

Mentors reduce your learning curve by years through mastering the best of wiser, more experienced role models. StartupNation exclusive discounts and savings on Dell products and accessories: Learn more here These 11 entrepreneurs share the number one piece of advice their closest mentor ever gave them: Time is the most …

WJR Business Beat with Jeff Sloan: Clearcover is a Hot Midwest Tech Company to Watch (Episode 219)

On this morning’s Business Beat, Jeff welcomes back Ryan Landau, founder of Purpose Jobs, to discuss Clearcover, a hot InsureTech company based in the Midwest that’s one to watch. Tune in to the Business Beat, below, to learn more about Clearcover: “Clearcover is just another signal that by basing yourself …

Sustainable Furniture Brand Floyd Raises $15 Million in Series B Funding

Based in Detroit, Floyd is a sustainable furniture startup founded by Alex O’Dell and Kyle Hoff. On Wednesday, April 21, 2021, the company announced it raised a $15 million Series B funding round. The round was led by Walden Ventures with participation from Beringea, La-Z-Boy, 14w and JPMorgan Chase. This brings …

WJR Business Beat with Jeff Sloan: Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Program Supports Detroit Businesses (Episode 217)

On this morning’s WJR Business Beat, Jeff chats with Jerome Brown, co-owner of Detroit Soul, and Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Detroit program alumnus. Goldman Sachs and the Goldman Sachs Foundation launched the 10,000 Small Businesses initiative to help entrepreneurs create jobs and economic growth by providing them with greater …

Rewards-Based or Equity Crowdfunding: Which is Best for My Business?

One of the most popular methods of fundraising for a startup is the use of crowdfunding platforms. With crowdfunding, people choose to make a donation through an approved funding platform to help raise money for a specific venture or project. If you’re considering crowdfunding, it’s important to have an understanding …

Former Microsoft Program Manager Shares His Employee to Entrepreneur Journey

Why is there so much talk about “young” entrepreneurs when the most successful companies (the top 0.1% based on growth of the first five years) are founded by individuals at the average age of 45? Call me a cranky 38-year-old, but the data seems to prove what seems like common …

Here’s Why Alternative Lending Can Take Your Business to the Next Level

Running a business is hard work, and nothing is more challenging than trying to secure the funds needed to start a new business or keep things running smoothly. It has become increasingly difficult for entrepreneurs to get funding from traditional banks, because of the hoops that they make business owners …

WJR Business Beat with Jeff Sloan: Study Shows Small Businesses Put Employees First (Episode 216)

On this morning’s WJR Business Beat, Jeff discusses the recently released Small Business Recovery Report conducted by Kabbage, an American Express Company. When asked which milestone would best indicate their business has recovered from the pandemic, the number one response of those surveyed was paying their employees their full wages. Tune …

Award-Winning Finance Expert Shares 5 Financial Musts Before Jumping Into Entrepreneurship

So, you want to start your own business — in which you are your own boss and you’re in control of your professional destiny. You’re mentally ready to become an entrepreneur, but the question is: Are you financially ready? Making the leap from side hustler to full-time entrepreneur is a big …

7 Exceptional Ways to Make Your Business Stand Out to Lenders

Searching for a small business loan can feel a little bit like hitting the dating scene. You’re researching lenders wondering, “Will they like me? Or will they reject me?” Working at Nav, where we’ve played matchmaker between thousands of small business owners and lenders, I’ve observed several key steps small …

Why Tesla’s Open Source Patent Strategy Reinforces the Importance of Patenting

Elon Musk famously announced in an open letter in June of 2014 that Tesla would “not initiate patent lawsuits against anyone who, in good faith, wants to use our technology.” In Musk’s words, “Technology leadership is not defined by patents… but rather by the ability of a company to attract …

WJR Business Beat with Jeff Sloan: Midwest Venture Showcase (Episode 215)

On this morning’s WJR Business Beat, Jeff and Paul W. Smith discuss the 2021 Midwest Venture Showcase, a partnership between the Midwest Growth Capital Symposium (MGCS) and InvestMidwest, which will showcase 57 companies actively seeking funding to an audience of top-tier investors, entrepreneurs, researchers and business executives. The virtual event runs April 27 …

Here’s Why Taking Risks is Good for Business

You’ve heard it before: “Fortune favors the bold.” Or the ever-popular, “Nothing ventured, nothing gained.” There’s also, “The only way to fail is to start.” And my personal favorite and go-to: “Learn from your mistakes.” Here’s Why Taking Risks is Good for BusinessAll of those pithy, motivational statements focus on one …

This Entrepreneur Shares How She Bootstrapped Her Startup (and How You Can, Too)

There are several different ways a startup founder might fund his or her business, including series funding, crowdfunding, loans, venture capital and angel investments. Bootstrapping is another option. As an entrepreneur, investment advisor and consultant to startup founders, I understand that each startup is different. There is no one “best” …

How to get started reselling to your web design clients

Conventional wisdom recommends optimizing your success in the web design business by splitting income into three buckets: project work, recurring revenue, and passive income. A reseller program is the perfect example of passive income. By reselling services provided by others, you earn commissions on initial sales, and even better, on …

Quick start guide to creating a web stack or website blueprint: Go from start to launch in record time

Starting a new website project is exciting. But if you’re a freelance or agency business owner, you likely know that creating a new WordPress website from scratch is time-consuming. By learning how to clone a website and create a web stack or website blueprint, you can cut down that time …

How Startups Can Achieve B Corp Status (and Why it’s Important)

The idea of starting and running a business for any reason other than profit may seem counterintuitive to some. But a growing number of businesses around the world are turning that idea on its head, and showing that business can — and should — do more. During 2020, a 23% growth …

WJR Business Beat with Jeff Sloan: The Startup Story of Bloomscape (Episode 214)

On this morning’s WJR Business Beat, Jeff shares a great story of entrepreneurial success happening right here in our region. The company is Detroit’s own Bloomscape, helmed by founder and CEO, Justin Mast. Tune in to the Business Beat, below, to learn more about Bloomscape’s success: “Our vision is to …

How to Use Video Marketing to Boost Your Rewards-Based Crowdfunding Campaign

Showing and telling are both essential elements in any rewards-based crowdfunding campaign. Nevertheless, without the show, you’ll never get to the tell — let alone the sell. Crowdfunding is an excellent way for entrepreneurs to test the concept of their product or service and determine market need (or lack thereof). Rewards-based …

New data from GoDaddy highlights the future of web designer & developer gigs

With two-thirds of Americans worrying about job security and more than half looking for new careers, web designers and developers still have great gigs. This data comes from survey results we released in February 2021, polling 500 web designers and developers. Americans love the lifestyle afforded by a career in …

WJR Business Beat with Jeff Sloan: Want to Start a Business? Find a Niche and Fill it (Episode 213)

On this morning’s WJR Business Beat, Jeff shares an important adage for all aspiring entrepreneurs: find a niche and fill it! To reiterate the importance of finding a niche, Jeff discusses the startup success story of Avery Stempel, founder of Collar City Mushrooms, a store in Troy, New York, that’s …

Conscious Consumerism: How to Build a Business with Ethics (and Why it Matters)

If you’re building a new business to last, it is extremely important that you focus on your company’s ethics from the very beginning. Why is it so important for entrepreneurs to focus on company ethics and transparency? There is a growing segment of active and informed consumers who vote with …

Dialing in clients’ SEO ahead of the Google Page Experience update

With the upcoming Google Page Experience update, search engines will favor websites with excellent user experience and performance. If you’re starting to get frantic messages from clients, you need not fret! I’m here to share learnings from my agency and run through the latest SEO techniques that will keep your …

The Secret Behind Unicorn Success of StockX? Start Before You’re Ready

The following is excerpted from “Big Little Breakthroughs: How Small, Everyday Innovations Drive Oversized Results” by Josh Linkner, courtesy of Post Hill Press. When you think of the most influential leaders in the $366 billion global footwear industry, you probably imagine luxe designers such as Christian Louboutin, Jimmy Choo, or …

Alternative Lending Options for Small Businesses in 2021

All businesses require funds to operate. Maybe when you first opened your doors, you used your own savings or received microloans from family or friends. But as businesses grow, it’s sometimes necessary to obtain outside financing. The majority of business owners usually opt for traditional bank loans or loans from …

Save on the Latest Business Tech! Exclusive Member Savings During Dell’s Quarterly Business Sale

Your productivity is our priority! Dell Technologies is here for all of your technology needs to help employees get more done. StartupNation readers can save an additional 5% to 10% off on select Dell-branded solutions April 19 through May 3 during Dell’s Quarterly Business Sale. To be connected to a …

What are the five most common domain extensions and which one should I use?

This article was original published on Nov. 21, 2017, and updated on April 16, 2021. Websites have become even more important to businesses and freelancers following the global lockdown from COVID-19. People are now choosing to frequent a website instead of the brick-and-mortar alternative. More than ever, you need to …

2021 Midwest Venture Showcase to Feature 57 Companies Actively Seeking Funding

The 2021 Midwest Venture Showcase, a partnership between the Midwest Growth Capital Symposium (MGCS) and InvestMidwest, will showcase 57 companies actively seeking funding to an audience of top-tier investors, entrepreneurs, researchers and business executives at the virtual event on April 27 to 28, 2021. The Midwest companies in the Showcase …

WJR Business Beat with Jeff Sloan: Pepperdine Most Fundable Companies (Episode 211)

On this morning’s Business Beat, Jeff welcomes Dr. Craig Everett, finance professor at Pepperdine University’s Graziadio Business School, who shares details of the Pepperdine Most Fundable Companies competition. Built to help great companies succeed, the contest provides the opportunity for companies seeking funding outside of major investment areas like Silicon …

WJR Business Beat with Jeff Sloan: Fortune Magazine List of Best Companies to Work For (Episode 210)

On this morning’s Business Beat, Jeff discusses Fortune’s recently released 100 Best Companies to Work For, which includes a local Detroit business in the top five! Tune in to the Business Beat to find out which businesses made the list of Fortune Magazine’s 100 Best Companies to Work For: Tune …