Small business blogs – what can they offer you?

What do owners of start-ups or small businesses look for in a blog? What sort of information are they looking for from the larger online community? This week, we decided to take a closer look at small business blogs in the first of a two-part series.

Small businesses have almost always grown by sharing as opposed to the growth-behind-closed-doors policy of giant corporates. This is where the small business blogs come in by acting as nodes of information and fostering a sense of community feeling.

Typically, entrepreneurs expect small business blogs to provide credible information on how to run their companies more professionally with the limited resources they have, how to reduce overheads, what systems and processes to invest in, what sort of security threats should they be aware of, and so on.

We have done a brief round-up of popular small business blogs, after checking what they had to offer and considering their fan following:

: The US government’s initiative to make the voice of small business count in administration. They also have a that features discussions on health reforms, workplace flexibility, Recovery Act tax reforms, and so on.

: Not strictly a small business blog, yet we couldn’t do without including it in this post, simply because of the range of topics it covers – business travel, disaster planning, women in business, personal finance, etc.

: For small businesses interested in going global. Yes, small businesses too can go beyond borders, the blog says, and encourages entrepreneurs to try exporting, irrespective of size. Brave, you think?

: Neatly laid out and full of meaty reviews related to small business: books, legislation, product reviews, social media, green biz, and more. You can even submit your press releases here.

: Handy tips on choosing the right desktop PCs, how to build a virtual office, written in layperson-friendly language. Another very useful site that I must mention is .  It has some really well-thought out posts on things entrepreneurs have to contend with regularly and also the implications of various developments on small business.  is a good source, too.

And, then, a small business blog from, well, the big daddy of big business: . It’s not restricted to just technology tips, but covers marketing and branding, too.

: An Intuit blog where you get a sense of the community, which is perhaps why it’s named that way. It offers insightful articles and yes, grants too.

: Provides a clear perspective on the often-confusing HR and employment regulations. It is not limited to California law, though, and does discuss stuff that can affect small business owners throughout the US. For instance, what does the HIRE Act (Hiring Incentive to Restore Employment Act)

: For some general advice on better relationships with customers, time management, and so on.

: In the unfortunate circumstance where it hasn’t worked out, you can turn to this blog for information on filing Chapter 11 and business restructuring.

Some very popular small business blogs run by mainstream media are those by and . The latter has some experienced business persons writing for them, and then there are case studies, too. Some of the I read on the site written in the first person were very interesting.

If you have some personal favorite business blogs out there, feel free to mention them in your comment.

And next, stay tuned for our overview of industry-specific small business blogs, especially those to do with yoga studios, trainers, massage therapists, and dieticians.

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