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I'd like for the categories to more readily reflect why members participate (i.e., what they are seeking from, or contributing to, the community). My suggestion for accomplishing that would be to have four (instead of three) main groups within the forums, with the following categories:
Home-Based, Affiliate, and MLM
Businesses Seeking Loans/Investors
Businesses Seeking Financial Services
Providers Offering Loans or Financial Services
Planning and Start-up
Management and HR
Legal and Insurance
Accounting, Taxes, Payroll, and Benefits
Advertising, Marketing, and Public Relations
Sales and Customer Service
Logistics, Shipping, and Customs
Internet, eCommerce, and Merchant Services
Business Tools and Technologies
International/Global Enterprise Issues
(Some of the Business Questions categories could eventually be split out further --- for instance, if there were enough advertising and PR questions to separate those.)
Thanks for the opportunity to provide input!
It might be a nice idea to have weekly or monthly webinars. for a few of these categories would be useful forums:
how to write a business plan
Thanks for the helpful feedback! Any more suggestions for new forum categories?
I would like to see a new forum geared to REAL ESTATE.
1) How to buy
5) Renovating .... ETC
I like that suggestion, MrFinance -- I'd have included it (Commercial Property/Real Estate) with the topics I listed in my post under Business Questions/Discussions/Advice if I'd thought of it. Good one!
How about a forum on how to to buy an existing business or how to sell an existing business when you are ready to move on. I have been a business broker for 22 years and I still find business owners that did not know they could sell their business because there was no real estate involved. It is a wide open subject that could cover many, many questions.
"Buying and Selling a Business"
Under the Business Opportunities section.
You have topics about starting , financing, and operating businesses but nothing about how to buy or sell a business and there are few good boards on the web related to this topic.
There should definitely be a "Buying & Selling" a business forum to separate it from the "Starting A Business" forum. There are a number of reasons (and advantages) to buy a business as opposed to starting one; and business owner members of SBOC may also benefit from being able to post topics/questions that may help them with planning or evaluating the sale of their business. A specific forum on those topics makes sense.
I can't put my finger on it...but there seems to be something missing, (or for lack of better words)....something is turning me off from the SBOC. Now, wait...I don't mean to be negative or anything like that at all... but I guess I am tired of seeing all the posts for people looking for HUGE sums of money or loans. It's sickening already. I have 2 jobs and have worked very hard for close to 30 years. I don't have $100,000.00 to just give to anyone and also...the posts about how you too can work from home, etc. I don't see how that relates to a small business community. I also feel that the same people are posting all the time and there is one poster in particular that has something to say about each and every post and keeps saying the same canned repsonse to everyone. Also, there are too many lurkers. It would be refreshing to get some new blood on the board. I have yet to find another small business owner out here, or another jewelry designer like me out there, or more website people in the fashion business. It seems to be a very "technical" board. So many are into systems and computers. I would love to talk to real business (retail) people who have different businesses. Well, that's my opinion. Thanks for asking!
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We currently have a lot of forums categories: Technology Management, Loans and Line of Credit, Starting a Business, Business Classifieds, and we even created a forum to discuss every day issues - ShopTalk. However, we are always looking for ways to improve - so do we need to create additional forum categories? Reply to us with your suggestions....we'd love to hear from you! If we get enough people interested in your suggestion, we'll add it in our next release.