Small Business Saturday draws 40+ Lehigh Valley participants. Here are their deals. -

Small Business Saturday draws 40+ Lehigh Valley participants. Here are their deals. - lehighvalleylive.comSmall Business Saturday draws 40+ Lehigh Valley participants. Here are their deals. - lehighvalleylive.comPosted: 30 May 2020 05:22 AM PDT More than 40 Lehigh Valley small business owners Saturday will be offering virtual deals on what they say will be one of their biggest shopping sales annually.Small Business Saturday typically is timed for following Black Friday in November. The nationwide effort for the past decade encourages communities to shop local as it kicks off the busiest shopping season of the year.The chamber is moving this year to hold the event twice -- this time with social distancing -- as many businesses struggle to survive financially during the coronavirus pandemic. Gov. Tom Wolf ordered all non-life-sustaining businesses to close their doors on March 19. Restaurants were then forced to offer menu items by takeout only with curbside pickup or delivery.Lehigh Val…

Should You Franchise Your Small Business? - Talk Radio 1210 WPHT

Should You Franchise Your Small Business? - Talk Radio 1210 WPHT

Should You Franchise Your Small Business? - Talk Radio 1210 WPHT

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 09:19 PM PST

You've made it over the hump of hearing a barrage of statics about the number of small businesses that fail in their first year. You've created a brand and are now looking for new ways to spark your capital and when scanning the how-to universe, one of the first keywords you'll encounter is "franchising." However, it is necessary to understand that while their significance in this American economy suggests that franchisees will succeed, a great number of them are as likely to fail within the first year, just as small businesses are when they first give it a go.

Benefits of franchising
There's no denying the appeal of having a prosperous trademark or brand name to help develop marketing strategies and a steady business model for your chosen sphere. Here are other underlining benefits of franchising a small business:

• Support with marketing and training
• Established brand, customer base and suppliers
• Financial assistance when necessary, such as a loan
• Access to tried and true trade secrets
• Less brainstorming new product development and more enjoyment of the perks that come with being your own boss

Drawbacks of franchising
• Portion of gross income is paid to franchisor for duration of business relationship, reducing earning potential
• Limited control and flexibility in the areas of creative changes, marketing tools and branding
• Less freedom to explore other avenues while locked into your contract with franchisor
• The ever-present risk factor involved in a new venture

Franchising relationships can and occasionally do fail. In most cases, it is a result of an array of reasons, including an incompatible or ill-matched franchisee/franchisor alliance, a resistance to following new formulas, poor management, or a general lack of financing.

Weighing the risks
When contemplating the idea of franchising your small business, take some time to assess your situation and evaluate if the time is in fact right for you to franchise. Franchising can include investing tens of thousands of dollars or more and if you're hoping for that magic pill that guarantees instant success and payout, you're probably going to be disappointed.

For some business owners who have taken those scary but necessary initial steps forward to achieve financial autonomy, entering into a franchising deal might feel like a step backward. If your entrepreneurial spirit and desire to be independent is what motivated your small business in the first place, it's important to remember that franchising consists of relationships with much give and take, as is required for most any relationship.

QuickBooks Brings AI-Driven Innovations to Small Businesses - Business Wire

Posted: 07 Nov 2019 06:00 PM PST

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif.--()--Intuit Inc. (Nasdaq: INTU) today announced new product innovations designed to leverage the latest in artificial intelligence (AI), bringing technology typically reserved for the world's biggest companies directly to small businesses. Being part of QuickBooks now means being part of the growth of one of the most advanced AI-driven, expert small business financial platforms in the world, giving small businesses the advantage they need to succeed.

Announced at Intuit's sixth annual QuickBooks Connect conference, more than five thousand attendees were the first to see the advanced capabilities of QuickBooks' AI-driven expert platform. New innovations help simplify and automate work, while eliminating drudgery and tedious tasks by identifying patterns in the billions of transactions that flow through the QuickBooks platform. QuickBooks takes the guesswork out of being a small business owner or self-employed by being the single source of truth for their business. QuickBooks Online now uses AI to automate certain repetitive back-office work, reduce friction in getting paid, and improve forecasts of cash flow. This makes small businesses smarter, more successful and free to focus on the important work of delighting customers.

"The reality of running a small business is hard, and often owners are left to figure out how to leverage and take advantage of AI by themselves. QuickBooks is changing this by leveling the playing field, giving small businesses access to data and insights they've never had before," said Alex Chriss, Executive Vice President and General Manager of Small Business Self-Employed Group at Intuit. "By turning data into meaningful and useful insights, QuickBooks will be able to help small businesses make more data-driven decisions, spotting mistakes that would otherwise cost time and money."

QuickBooks has delivered innovations in all areas of running a small business. At last year's QuickBooks Connect, QuickBooks showcased its first look at smarter ways to add payment capabilities to invoices. As a result of those innovations, QuickBooks customers on average get paid within five days of sending an invoice, three times faster than those who don't use QuickBooks payments. In regards to payroll, employers using the QuickBooks flagship online payroll products can now hold onto their money until payday, instead of tying up funds several days in advance. This allows business owners to hold onto $22 billion in funds for days longer each year. Finally, with QuickBooks Capital, $1.7 billion in funding has been distributed to small businesses, including $1.3 billion in marketplace funds and $441 million in direct lending.

This year, QuickBooks builds on this momentum with three key areas to accelerate the benefits for our customers: Smart Money, Smart Decisions, and Smart Connections.

Smart Money

Money is like oxygen to small business owners. They can't survive without it. In fact, in 82 percent of small business failures, cash flow problems are a contributing factor. QuickBooks is unveiling new innovations to help small businesses get paid faster, get access to the capital they need and better understand their cash flow, allowing them to stay ahead of challenges.

  • Coming Soon: Cash Flow Planner – Small businesses need a full view of their cash flow in order to make the best decisions. Leveraging the power of AI, this tool will enable small businesses to predict their daily cash flow over the next 90 days. The planner proactively alerts business owners when a negative situation is on the horizon and provides recommendations around how to navigate the situation. QuickBooks leverages anonymized data across millions of customers with more than 26 billion touchpoints to generate predictive scenarios with accurate cash flow forecasts. In addition, the planner can be used for scenario planning to help users answer questions such as: "Is it safe to hire another employee now, given my forecasted cash flow in the coming few months?"
  • New: QuickBooks Payments - QuickBooks Payments currently enables next day payment and will soon enable instant deposit payments, giving small businesses access to funds after getting paid, whether through bank transfers or credit card, rather than waiting several business days. Businesses can create a payment-enabled invoice in less than one minute, with their hours, expenses and mileage added automatically through AI. They can also customize their invoice, take a deposit or structure installments and allow customers to pay in a variety of formats, enhancing their customer service while improving their cash flow. Additionally, QuickBooks now ensures that small businesses get paid wherever they are with the introduction of a new set of features in GoPayment. With GoPayment, business owners can set roles and permissions for staff that enable the ability to accept and get paid at a job site. As a result of these new capabilities, small businesses that use QuickBooks Payments get paid three times faster than those who do not.
  • Updated: QuickBooks Capital - Using machine learning to assess risk by leveraging 26 billion transactions and data points, QuickBooks provides loans to small businesses that otherwise might not qualify. Since launching, QuickBooks Capital has given small businesses credit for their business story beyond the credit score, and QuickBooks today announced the opening of the availability of loans to certain QuickBooks Desktop customers in addition to QuickBooks Online.

Smart Decisions

Too often, small businesses and the self-employed are making decisions about their business without the right information or expertise. QuickBooks has seen millions of similar decisions across its ecosystem and through the power of AI, QuickBooks provides insights to help businesses be smarter.

  • New: Receipt Capture - The new QuickBooks Mobile app now includes Receipt Capture, which allows small businesses to upload, email or snap receipts for improved expense management. Receipt Capture extracts relevant data from the receipt so small businesses can either create a new transaction or find a match between the receipt and an existing expense transaction in QuickBooks.
  • New: Mileage Tracking in QuickBooks - QuickBooks first introduced its patented mileage tracking technology in QuickBooks Self-Employed and has now expanded the offering to QuickBooks Online users so they can track and separate business mileage from personal to identify more potential tax deductions and savings. Leveraging AI, QuickBooks Mileage Tracking automatically recognizes frequent trip routes, allows users to mark locations as "favorites" and can proactively recommend rules to ensure trips are consistently marked as business or personal.
  • Updated: QuickBooks Online Advanced - QuickBooks Online Advanced was introduced in 2018 to serve a gap in the small business market, providing high-growth small businesses with a cloud-based solution that leverages AI, automation and data innovation to deliver more ways for them to grow. New features coming soon in QuickBooks Online Advanced include the ability to automate transactions and workflows and an integration with a leading cloud-based organization and customer relationship management tool. Additional robust QuickBooks Online Advanced features designed for high-growth businesses include advanced reporting, the ability to process more transactions, and increased in-product support, as well as the integration with 700 apps.
  • New: QuickBooks Online Accountant Business Performance Dashboard - The new Business Performance tab in QuickBooks Online Accountant provides key metrics, trends and ratios with the click of a button. Specifically designed for accountants, the powerful technology inside QuickBooks automatically calculates ratios and displays key trends from their client's data that can help accountants identify areas their clients should focus on to improve business performance.

Smart Connections

As the world's leading small business ecosystem, QuickBooks now intelligently matches small businesses to experts to help them grow and prosper with the launch of QuickBooks Live Bookkeeping.

  • New: QuickBooks Live Bookkeeping – Announced today, QuickBooks Live Bookkeeping is a platform of assisted professional services that connects small business and self-employed customers with on-demand accounting experts inside the QuickBooks product. Through a one-way video conferencing capability, small business owners can connect to a virtual bookkeeper to get the help they need and ensure their records are accurate and up-to-date, giving them the confidence and freedom that their books are done right so they can focus on other aspects of their businesses.

For more information visit

About Intuit

Intuit's mission is to Power Prosperity Around the World. Our global products and platforms, including TurboTax®, QuickBooks®, Mint® and Turbo®, are designed to empower consumers, self-employed and small businesses to improve their financial lives, finding them more money with the least amount of work, while giving them complete confidence in their actions and decisions. Our innovative ecosystem of financial management solutions serves 50 million customers worldwide, unleashing the power of many for the prosperity of one. Please visit us for the latest news and in-depth information about Intuit and its brands and find us on social.

Intuit, QuickBooks, QuickBooks Connect, QuickBooks ProAdvisor, TurboTax, and Mint are trademarks of Intuit Inc. Other parties' marks are property of their respective owners.

This information is intended to outline our general product direction, but represents no obligation and should not be relied on in making a purchase decision.


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