Small Business in the News, Jan 1 - 8, 2016

Happy New Year! We know there is too much to keep up with when you’re a busy entrepreneur, so we compile small business news highlights each week for you to read only what matters most. Here is a summary of the top stories for January 1 – 8, 2015.

Healthcare Likely to Cause Major Headaches for Small Businesses in 2016

New for 2016, SMBs with 50 - 99 employees will be required to provide insurance to 95% of their employees and dependents up to age 26. Additionally, the amount of paperwork needed to stay in compliance will increase, which is likely to burden smaller companies who don't have dedicated counsel or HR in-house. Unfortunately, the new requirements go into effect as healthcare costs continue to rise. Premiums that increased nearly 20% in 2014 are slated to go up another 5-8% in 2016. Read more...

Staples Launches App to Support Small Business Growth and Success

On Tuesday, Staples announced the launch of its new app, Quick Wins, to provide a single resource that offers business-specific ideas, metrics and community support in one easy-to-access place. In a recent survey, they concluded that while 72% of SMB owners want assistance to analyze their business metrics and identify areas of improvement, 41% don't know where to begin. The Quick Wins app will serve as a data aggregator from various platforms like Facebook, Quickbooks and Google Analytics to provide ideas for growth and success. Read more...

Cyber Security Threats Expected to Increase in 2016

Security experts predict that 2016 will be the biggest cyber security hacking year to date. Contributing to the expected increase is the proliferation of the Internet of Things, such as connected televisions, thermostats, and watches. More and more, small businesses who lack IT resources and 24/7 monitoring will be susceptible to attacks, too. 71% of all security breaches target SMBs. And as smartphones become a primary work vessel, sensitive data shared via a mobile device will be very vulnerable. Read more...

Best Alternative Business Lenders Announced

Business News Daily just released a list of of the top alternative small business lenders in the space. Among 5 different categories, 20 lenders were evaluated. SnapCap was selected as runner up for the Best Bad Credit Business Loan, which requires that applicants have one year or more in business, have an annual revenue of at least $100k, and only secured loans are available. Additional winners included Accion, Kabbage, RapidAdvance, Fundation and OnDeck.  Read more... 

5 New Years Resolutions For Small Business

With the start of a new year, there is always opportunity for a small business owner to take a step back and identify concrete, actionable steps to aid in growth and success for the coming quarters. According to Small Business Trends, the 5 best places to start are by collecting owed money to close out 2015 books and start 2016 off in a profitable way, let go of any employees who aren't contributing to the bottom line, follow up with old clients and leads and reengage them, test a new marketing strategy every month, and leverage automation software to streamline repetitive processes. Read more...

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