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53 Posts authored by: SBC Team
SBC Team

Celebrating Small Business

Posted by SBC Team Apr 17, 2019

Every Community has Something to Celebrate This Small Business Month.

Small Business Month is a time when we stop and take notice of all the vibrant businesses that make up our communities. The relationship owners have with their customers make up the fabric of their neighborhoods. That’s why we’ve collected our best articles, highlights and interviews to help other rising business owners with their online presence, social media strategies, and much more. Make sure to check out this page throughout the month to learn more and inspire ideas that help your own small business community grow.

Social Media Shoppers Visit Stores, Too.  Here's How to Find Them. Small Business, Big Presence: 5 Ways your Business Should Engage Locally Success Stories: How Tiny Doors ATL Became a Big Hit How to Encourage Online Shoppers into Your Brick-and-Mortar Store How to Make Your Local Business a Neighborhood Institution Using Micro Influencers to Drive Business in a Local Market Small Business Profile: The Spindle Floods, Cyberattacks and Reputational Threats: Is Your Business Prepared? Neighborhood Vendors: How hyper-local businesses stay in business today Why Planning for Uncertainty is a Must for Business Owners 6 Ways Small Businesses Have a Large Impact in Local Markets Schedule an Appointment Small Business Spotlight: More to Love Yoga Around the block in Atlanta with Myrna Perez Around the block in Nashville with Maneet Chauhan Client Spotlight: Denise Shelton, Founder and CEO of Community Bridge, Inc Small Business Spotlight: TheraPeeds Family Center Join the Conversation Spring 2019 Small Business Owner Report Why Local SEO Matters More Than Ever Tips from a Pro: How to Score a Small Business Touchdown at a Local Event

Small business fraud can be a serious issue for many businesses and prevention of such fraud is a necessity as a modern business owner.

Ensuring your business isn't vulnerable is a top priority. While small businesses are more susceptible to fraud than most large companies, there are ways in which you can help protect your business. Setting up secure systems, infrastructures, and internal controls to protect against fraudulent activity can save you both time and money. Whether your business has already experienced fraudulent activities - like identity theft or cyber security threats - or you are just looking to be able to identify threats before they happen, use these different resources to keep your workplace secure.


Fall 2018: Small Business Payments Spotlight Report Small Talk with Bank of America Merchant Services SpendTalk with Bank of America Merchant Services Protect your small business; security and fraud tips Digital Transformation of SMBs: The Future of Commerce (VISA) Fraud is evolving. So should your data security. Business Identify Theft in the U.S.: 2018 Report What is business identity theft? Business identity theft scams Tips to protect business identity Business identity theft, Victim resources Tips to help protect your company during tax season SHOULD MY BUSINESS SHARE CYBER INCIDENT DATA with an ISAC or ISAO? Vulnerability Assessments HOW WILL LEAST PRIVILEGE PROTECT MY BUSINESS? WHAT ARE THE CYBER RISKS TO MY BUSINESS? You've been hacked - do you know who to call? How to Know What to Protect How to Protect Your Data How to Secure Your Website How to create a secure password

Thumb.pngFraud isn’t going away—it’s getting more sophisticated. The security industry is always applying new techniques to keep pace. Help safeguard your company and customer data at the point of sale.


Click here to download the guide: Fraud is evolving. So should your data security. (PDF)

Thumb.pngThe insights provided in this guide are for small and medium size businesses (SMBs) in the United States, with a focus on helping businesses grow and improve the customer experience by leveraging technology and digital commerce.


Click here to download the guide: Digital Transformation of SMBs: The Future of Commerce (PDF).

Sage advice for women small business owners from Ramelle & Emma Massey of Massey Insurance Agency.  Emma and Ramelle are featured in the Bank of America National Women’s Small Business Month video currently running in Times Square and here on the Small Business Community.





“I am Emma Massey, and this is my daughter, Ramelle Massey, and we are Massey Insurance Agency.


“It’s extremely important to have female business leaders that you can look up to. This is my mom. She was a female business leader, and I followed in her footsteps. Having a strong role model is very important. Lift as you climb. The glass ceiling is shattered, piece by piece, and we are the ones who are chipping away at it.”



Bank of America is not affiliated with any business featured herein.

Bank of America and the Bank of America logo are registered trademarks of Bank of America Corporation.  All other logos and company names mentioned herein are the property of their respective owners and used pursuant to license. Member FDIC.  ©Bank of America Corporation.

What advice does Nicole Centeno, CEO and founder of Splendid Spoon have for other entrepreneurs? Nicole is featured in the Bank of America National Women’s Small Business Month video currently running in Times Square and here on the Small Business Community.





“My name is Nicole Centeno, and I’m the CEO and founder of Splendid Spoon.


“My advice for young entrepreneurs is really to just start. The best school is the school of life. There is no one path for any entrepreneur. The sooner you get started, the sooner you start getting comfortable making mistakes, the faster you’ll learn, and the faster you’ll gain confidence in yourself to keep moving forward.”




Bank of America is not affiliated with any business featured herein.


Bank of America and the Bank of America logo are registered trademarks of Bank of America Corporation.  All other logos and company names mentioned herein are the property of their respective owners and used pursuant to license. Member FDIC.  ©Bank of America Corporation.

"It's important to feel that your natural self is perfect the way that it is,” says Rachel Estapa, Founder and CEO of More to Love Yoga and Bank of America client. In this video Rachel talks about turning her passion for yoga and body positivity into her business. Learn more at


Check out our other Small Business Spotlights:







It's important to feel that your natural self is perfect the way that it is and that was very hard for me growing up because I was always larger. Through practicing yoga I'm at peace with myself. I want to help other people wherever they are in their body love journey.


Title: Rachel Estapa, Founder and CEO, More to Love Yoga, Bank of America Brand Ambassador


More to Love Yoga is for people that consider themselves unable to do yoga.


MoreToLove.jpgI help usually larger bodied people learn yoga, but also experience their body in a way that's not going to feel intimidating.


What's really important to me is allowing people to feel like they can cherish their bodies through their own experience with yoga, but also sharing the More to Love Yoga community.


Turning your passion into a business, it's very easy to get overwhelmed. I had a lot of fear around the money aspect. I can't take this great idea and bring it to more people unless I get this business part down.


When I started working with Lisa from Bank of America she was just not like any banker that I ever met. It was like a having a friend that is a banker.


I've always gravitated to the small business owner because I think it takes a lot of courage.


Title:     Lisa Carroll, Senior Small Business Banker, Bank of America


In Rachel's case I was really intrigued by the company. I wanted to talk about her business priorities, and see how we can help as a bank.


I want to grow More to Love and Lisa's definitely helping me with ways that the financial systems can support that growth. I've never felt that any question I asked, or anything that I needed was too small and she had all of this wealth of knowledge from Bank of America.


It's important to have a relationship with your bank. Someone that you could trust, that you can talk to about the business, the challenges that you're facing, because that's really where we shine. We're able to actually provide suggestions to help.


Lisa knows who I am as a person, what my business is about, and when I grow, Bank of America's going to be a great partner in that.


When I think about the future, I'm really excited to have more people become part of the More to Love Yoga community.


I have the power to have a business that I'm proud of in the world. I mean, that's the dream for everyone, right? To do what you love.




Check out More To Love Yoga at


Make an appointment to talk with a Bank of America Small Business Banker.

Bank of America supports the power of women small business owners this October and all year long.



Each October, Bank of America shares its support of women small business owners by celebrating National Women’s Small Business Month. Last year, we introduced the names behind women-owned small businesses by placing their names “up in lights” on a theater marquee. This year, we’ve taken the “You’re Gonna Know Me” idea a step further by showing the faces of the women behind small businesses and sharing their stories with the world. By doing so, we also show the power of working together – the more women we can support in building their businesses, the more opportunity we create for other women.


Anthem-Screen-Shot.jpgBank of America presents “You’re Gonna Know Me.”


You’re gonna value our instincts.

You’re gonna use my technology.

You’re gonna get with my program.

You’re gonna know our policy.

You’re gonna read my book.

You’re gonna face the world with me.


The world’s gonna know you.  We’re gonna help. Bank of America Business Advantage leads the way for small business owners and celebrates National Women’s Small Business Month.


Get to know the small business owners in this video by visiting their websites.


Nicole Centeno – Splendid Spoon™

Sasha Stern & Jamie Scalera – Miss Smith

Alina Haranczyk – Initech Industrial, LLC

Emma & Ramelle Massey – Massey Insurance Agency

Erin Christie – Author of Same Starry Sky

Miri Torres – Arianna Skincare



Bank of America is not affiliated with any business featured herein.

Bank of America and the Bank of America logo are registered trademarks of Bank of America Corporation.  Banking products offered by Bank of America, N.A., Member FDIC and wholly owned subsidiary of Bank of America Corporation. © 2018 Bank of America Corporation.


Bonin Bough: How would you like to win $25,000 to grow your business?


Rachel Estapa:  “This changes, like, literally everything. It really does.”


Bonin Bough:


I’ve teamed up with Mastercard and Bank of America team for the second annual Grow Your Biz contest. It’s a contest for small business owners all across the country.  Last year we only focused on businesses in Boston, but this year we’re taking our search nationwide.


The grand prize winner will win business consultation sessions with each of the judges, including me, and a chance to win $25,000 to grow their biz, provided by Mastercard.


Entering is easy.  Submit a video by September 30th telling us how you plan to grow your small business.  Remember to tell us specifics about your plan to grow your business, have lots of energy like last year’s winner Rachel from More to Love Yoga, be creative, but don’t worry about over producing.  You can even use your phone to record your video.


Four finalists will have the chance to pitch their business live in New York City on November 8th to our Grow Your Biz panel for a chance to win $25,000.


Every small business can use a jump start to get to the next level.  Go ahead. Take the leap.  Enter today.


No purchase necessary.  Void where prohibited.  Open to small business owners in the 50 US and DC, 18+ ends 9/30/18. Restrictions apply.  Visit for Official Rules and complete details.

The Spotlight is on Women Entrepreneurs in 2018

The 2018 Bank of America Women Business Owner Spotlight explores the goals, challenges, and everyday realities of women entrepreneurs across the country. The Spotlight shines a light on optimism for the year ahead, access to capital, and digital transformation.


For women entrepreneurs, confidence in the economy has reached a two-year high, with a larger number of business owners expecting their revenues to increase compared to last year. This reported surge in optimism is coupled with key insights about the digital transformation sweeping across the small business landscape. One key finding is that women are adopting mobile devices for payments and other business functions at higher rates than men.


The Spotlight also examines women’s experiences regarding access to capital. While an overwhelming majority believe access to capital for women business owners has improved over the last decade, a majority still believe that it’s more difficult to secure businesses financing than it is for men.


Want to know more?


Download the 2018 Bank of America Women Business Owner Spotlight

Veteran_Resources_body.jpgby Robert Lerose.


Military veterans who are either starting their own small business or already running one are in a unique category. Their training, service, and discipline are highly regarded by prospects and clients. The government also regularly awards a significant number of contracts specifically to businesses owned by veterans.


The following list of selected resources can provide information, assistance, and services to military veteran small business owners. Some of these overlap in their coverage of topics, so check them out thoroughly to find those that can help you best.


Office of Small & Disadvantaged Business Utilization: A comprehensive resource run by the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs that promotes small business participation in VA procurements.


VetBiz: Run by the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs, it provides information about the verification process to qualify for VA contracts.


Veteran_Resources_PQ.jpgService Disabled Veteran-Owned Businesses: The Small Business Administration resource that provides contracting support for veterans and service-disabled veterans, with information on how to qualify for veteran contracts.


Office of Veterans Business Development: Operated by the Small Business Administration, it provides help on availability, applicability, and usability of administration small business programs for veterans, reservists, and their families.


National Veteran-Owned Business Association (NaVOBA): Advocacy group that fights for more opportunities for military veteran business owners. Offers a registry for consumers looking for veteran-owned businesses, a magazine covering the veteran-owned business movement, webinars, and an index of "Buy Veteran" companies.


V-WISE: A program operated by the Institute For Veterans and Military Families at Syracuse University that provides women veterans with tools and resources to start and grow their own businesses.


Hivers and Strivers: An angel investment group that supports start-up companies founded and run by graduates of the U.S. military academies.


These and many other resources are there to help military veterans succeed in the marketplace. Take advantage.

Small Business Story Collection: Celebrating the Power of Women

Women small business owners are paving the way.  This collection highlights how to embrace the unique challenges women face and thrive as small business owners.

Resources for Women Entrepreneurs from Bank of America Women-owned Small Businesses Keep Growing Yet Revenues Need a Boost. How You Can Help 3 Fundraising Tips for Women Entrepreneurs to Raise Capital Celebrating a 30-Year Milestone at NAWBO’s Women’s Business Conference Her Mission: Save Lives: “The Heartbeat of Main Street,” Episode 9 Women Entrepreneurs Seeking Professional Guidance Should Join These Organizations Women Business Owner Spotlight: “The Heartbeat of Main Street,” Episode 8 Women and Financial Wellness: Beyond the Bottom Line Women's Entrepreneurial Journeys The Myths and Realities of Millennial Women as Entrepreneurs What Every Woman Should Know Before Starting a Business [ebook] NAWBO: The Power of Connections: It’s time to rise! 3 Tactics Women Entrepreneurs Can Use to Grow RevenueForget Work-Life Balance and Learn to Enjoy the RideWomen Entrepreneurship in a World of Change, Moderated by Susan SolovicSix Tips Women Should Follow to Succeed as EntrepreneursWhat Every Woman Should Know Before Starting A Small BusinessWork-Life Balance Tips For Women EntrepreneursMeet 5 of America’s Most Influential Female EntrepreneursWomen-Business-Leaders-Path.png 

Additional Resources


Small business expert Carol Roth shares her biggest piece of advice for female entrepreneurs and asks a question that’s crucial to business growth.



If you have questions for Carol, please scroll down and ask in the comment below.  Carol will do her best to respond.




About Carol Roth

Carol Roth is the creator of the Future File™ legacy planning system, “recovering” investment banker, billion-dollar dealmaker, investor, entrepreneur, national media personality and author of the New York Times bestselling book, The Entrepreneur Equation. She is a judge on the Mark Burnett-produced technology competition show, America’s Greatest Makers and TV host and contributor, including host of Microsoft’s Office Small Business Academy. She is also an advisor to companies ranging from startups to major multi-national corporations and has an action figure made in her own likeness. 


Web: or Twitter: @CarolJSRoth.

You can read more articles from Carol Roth by clicking here


Bank of America, N.A. engages with Carol Roth to provide informational materials for your discussion or review purposes only. Carol Roth is a registered trademark, used pursuant to license. The third parties within articles are used under license from Carol Roth. Consult your financial, legal and accounting advisors, as neither Bank of America, its affiliates, nor their employees provide legal, accounting and tax advice.


Bank of America, N.A. Member FDIC.  ©2017 Bank of America Corporation

Inaugural Report Highlights Optimism in 2017 for Hispanic Small Business Owners


Hispanic entrepreneurs are one of the fastest-growing segments of the small business sector, making contributions to the economy and job creation like never before. In order to more acutely understand the unique experiences and perspectives of this group, Bank of America surveyed approximately 300 Hispanic small business owners from across the country about issues ranging from their economic and business outlooks for 2017, to their views on lending and the role that their communities have in the success of their businesses.


For additional insights, see the Hispanic Small Business Owner Spotlight infographic below.  For a complete, in-depth look at the insights of the nation’s Hispanic small business owners, download the full 2017 Bank of America Hispanic Small Business Owner Spotlight (PDF).


When you’re self-employed, investing for retirement is entirely up to you. Here are some ways to put away money for your future.


  • Start a savings plan. A popular option for the self-employed is a Simplified Employee Pension, or SEP IRA, says Thomas Carter, vice president of Personal Retirement Strategy & Solutions at Merrill Lynch. "These have a much higher contribution limit than traditional IRAs." Generally, a sole proprietor with no employees can make deductible contributions of up to 20% of her earnings from the business, up to the maximum annual limit ($53,000 for 2016).

    Callout.gifFor traditional and Roth IRAs, the maximum is $5,500 ($6,500 for those aged 50 and older). As with traditional IRAs, you contribute pre-tax dollars to a SEP IRA, which won't be taxed until you withdraw the funds in retirement.

  • Contribute steadily. Freelancers often contribute one lump sum to a retirement plan at year's end, says Carter. "But that means investing a year's worth of savings all at once," he says. Regularly contributing smaller amounts may allow you to capture lower prices as markets fluctuate, depending on the market prices at the time you contribute.


  • Seek additional income. If your gig doesn't let you sock away enough money for retirement, look for other ways to generate income. "Perhaps you have a spare room to rent out," Carter says. "Or you might consider driving for a ride-sharing company a couple of evenings per week."


3 Questions to Ask Your Advisor

  1. Could a SEP IRA be right for me?
  2. How much can I afford to put towards retirement savings each year?
  3. What are some more ways I can boost my retirement savings?


Keep in mind that dollar cost averaging cannot guarantee a profit or prevent a loss in declining markets. Since such investment plan involves continual investment in securities regardless of fluctuating price levels, you should consider your willingness to continue purchasing during periods of high or low price levels.

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