Useful Website Links for Startups

Ordoro inventory management software There are a myriad of websites that can help you with your business startup.

You have found many, including Startup Owl.

Here are ones that I have found useful.

The list will grow and probably the categories as well.

There are some really golden links here–some may surprise you. Keep returning to this page if you need help in future, because when I find really useful sites, I will add them.

So browse to your heart’s content:

Business Plans

Entrepreneurship

Finance

Incorporation

Management Theories and Methods

Marketing and Sales

Office and Admin

Networking

Personal Development

Tech

Business Plans 

Live Plan is the best! Read my article about the product and how it works.

Entrepreneurship

  1. The United States Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship (USASBE) is the largest independent, professional, academic organization in the world dedicated to advancing the discipline of entrepreneurship.  With over 1000 members from universities and colleges, for-profit businesses, nonprofit organizations, and the public sector, USASBE is a diverse mix of professionals that share a common commitment to fostering entrepreneurial attitudes and behaviors.
  2. The School for Startups is a huge resource for entrepreneurs, run by Chris Hanks and Jim Beach who used to teach entrepreneurship at Georgia State University, Chris specializing in Family Entrepreneurship, Social Entrepreneurship, Valuation, and Start-ups and with Jim specializing in Importing/ Exporting, Google skills, and International Entrepreneurship. 
  3. Harrison Metal, yes Harrison Metal, and no they don’t bash metal. They invest in early stage technology companies led by exceptional founders. They help them to build products that improve the daily lives of users, and successfully take those products to market, creating a thriving business. Founder Michael Dearing makes excellent videos on entrepreneurship. You should take a look.
  4. I have been a business colleague and past startup partner of an amazing consultant, Victor Rosansky, whose website is worth a visit, since he has both useful material for entrepreneurs, and also bases a lot of his work on the latest researches in neuroscience and he applies them to the entrepreneurial mind. Take a look.

Finance

  1. Venture Funding Network: serves as a connection engine, a learning environment and a meeting place where our members can post listings to find the right “door openers”. They connect entrepreneurs with investors, lenders and the service providers they need, all in one convenient place.
  2. Chubby Brain: Their first publicly released algorithm is the Funding Recommendation Engine (FRE). The FRE takes about 5 minutes to complete and uses inputs you provide about your business and its funding needs to identify angel investors, venture capital and private equity firms, grant programs and banks that match your business based on their actual funding and investment history (not what they say they invest in).
  3. BusinessFinance.com – Search the funding criteria of over 4,000 sources for business loans, venture capital, equipment leasing and commercial real estate financing.
  4. TurboTax is a good product to help with doing your taxes whether as an individual or sole proprietor. The site has some excellent help, like the article “From lemonade stand to estimated taxes.”
  5. A good guide to Grant Writing for Small Business is well worth a visit. Grants are often overlooked by startups as a source of funding. This one was recommended by Alison Bentley, a teacher and tutor at Catholic Memorial Central High School—thank you and her student Nicole.

Incorporation

While for most startups, incorporating a business is sufficiently straightforward that the founders can do it themselves through the Secretary of State’s office in whichever state they intend to incorporate. My experience is that the State office will be very helpful if you find the online  process to be difficult.However, if you do feel more secure having someone do the task for you, Harbor Compliance is the way to go. Their work will cost you, at various prices depending upon the level of service you require. They also have very helpful sets of help notes State by State – and you can use them whether you have signed up, or not. 

 

Management Theories and Methods

There are many places to go to get help with how to do management tasks, especially if you are a newcomer to running things. ToolsHero presents and promotes simplified management theories and methods to everybody who’s interested worldwide. Based in Holland, the site is of course, in perfect English and it is really a mine of ‘how-tos’. Even if you are not looking specifically for a way of managing something, you may visit the site and have an ah-ha moment about the best way to solve a particular problem that has been bothering you. I suggest you make a visit now, just out of curiosity. You may find it very rewarding. Typical subjects include Change Management, Infographics, Leadership, Marketing, Management and Problem Solving.

Marketing and Sales

  1. Start by using many links that are on Startup Owl, especially these marketing tools, or visit the Startup Marketing page.
  2. Dabbleboard: the mission at Dabbleboard is to help people think and communicate. By making it easier to visualize ideas, they help unlock the mind’s true potential. And by harnessing the power of the Internet, they enable the fusion of ideas from any number of people.
  3. Here’s an excellent resource brought to my attention by a reader of Startup Owl: 50 Ways to Make Your First Sale – at Shopify’s commerce University.
  4. You will find you are always needing images, and costs can add up, but try Freerange Stock. They provide free quality stock photos. It is an advertising revenue-supported community, so photographers get paid when users click on the ads that appear next to their submissions.

Office and Admin

  1. Here’s a company that deserves success: Smile Software. They have a range of products to make your life easier. PDF Pen is a good value product that you can use to edit PDFs, something that’s not normally possible without buying expensive software. Another good one is PDF Pen Scan+ that can scan contracts, invoices, or receipts as PDFs with your iPhone® or iPad® and then uses OCR to make that scanned image into editable text! But more than that, their customer support is excellent + very personal.

Networking

  1. Mosaic Hub is an entrepreneur community and resource center where entrepreneurs, service providers, mentors and investors connect and find the tools to launch and grow great businesses. Their tools are: an Answers feature that provides a venue for discussions amongst entrepreneurs, service providers, mentors and investors. the Resource Center contains articles, videos and other business resources to obtain more in-depth information on a particular topic. The Service Provider Search enables you to find service providers. They have a classified ad and listing feature, for requesting help with a project or offer a deal, job or other item. You can also romote your startup to potential customers and investors and get valuable feedback from other members.

Personal Development

Personal development is a very personal thing and getting a coach will always depend upon relationship more than any particular skills. There are many who work with senior management as mentors. I work with entrepreneurs on personal as much much as on business development, but sometimes a would-be entrepreneur needs to get to first base and will find it very helpful to get themselves unstuck about where to begin.

  1. One person who can help you get un-stuck is Mark Hurwich of Concentrated Coaching and The London Perret Roche Group. He has aBS in electrical engineering and computer science from M.I.T. and an MBA from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. But it’s his personal skills in coaching that make his services effective. He uses techniques such as Neuro Linguinistic Programming, but don’t be put off by that (!), for he has wide business experience and has taught in many different situations, though I met him through our meditation practice at an Applied Mindfulness conference.

Tech

wayde gilchrist

  1. Wayde Gilchrist is the host and founder of Tech Start Radio. He loves what he does and this spills over into the ability to offer a range of tech consulting services. Ideal for startups, Wayde can take on both big and small projects, being turned on and off like a tap. As the webmaster for McAfee, he created one of the first eCommerce stores on the Internet, back in 1996. He has done all kinds of assignments, including being the CTO of greenjobs.com. His most recent gig was as CTO of zindigo.com, a social fashion boutique platform. Take a look and you’ll get a sense of what his work is like. The tech startup consulting services he offers are wide ranging as you might expect from someone with such a wide tech experience. They cover Technology Assessment; Candidate Assessment; Project Management; Database Optimization; Architecture; Documentation.
  2. RobertMening in Sweden has produced the best guide to setting up a website that I know of. You should certainly check it out at websitesetup.org. I certainly wish it had existed when I set up this WordPress site. It is a beautifully simple website with no flimflam. It is intended for non-techies like me.
  3. Cloudswave helps you find the right software for your business needs.

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