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Business Startups

[ 1 ] Apr. 2, 2012 | SBO Editor

15 hot, lowcost launch gold mines to tap into now! Start small & win big!

Everyday the SBA’s Office of Advocacy receives hundreds and hundreds of emails and phone calls by individuals who want to start their own small business.

The Office of Advocacy defines a small business for research purposes as an independent business having fewer than 500 employees. Firms wishing to be designated small businesses for government programs such as contracting must meet size standards specified by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Office of Size Standards. These standards vary by industry–see www.sba.gov/size.

Here are some of the most common questions the Office receives everyday along with their responses.

How important are small businesses to the U.S. economy?

Small firms:

• Represent 99.7 percent of all employer firms. Yes, it is a fact.

• Employ just over half of all private sector employees.

• Pay 44 percent of total U.S. private payroll. Small biz is a machine.

• Have generated 64 percent of net new jobs over the past 15 years. o  Create more than half of the nonfarm private gross domestic product (GDP).

• Hire 40 percent of high tech workers (such as scientists, engineers, and computer programmers).

• Are 52 percent home-based and 2 percent franchises.

• Made up 97.3 percent of all identified exporters and produced 30.2 percent of the known export value in FY 2007.

• Produce 13 times more patents per employee than large patenting firms; these patents are twice as likely as large firm patents to be among the one percent most cited.

Source: U.S. Dept. of Commerce, Bureau of the Census and International Trade Admin.; Advocacy-funded research by Kathryn Kobe, 2007 (www. sba.gov/advo/research/rs299tot.pdf) and CHI Research, 2003 (www.sba. gov/advo/research/rs225tot.pdf); U.S. Dept. of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics.

What is small firms’ share of employment? Small businesses employ just over half of U.S. workers. Of 119.9 million nonfarm private sector workers in 2006, small firms with fewer than 500 workers employed 60.2 million and large firms employed 59.7 million. Firms with fewer than 20 employees employed 21.6 million. While small firms create a majority of the net new jobs, their share of employment remains steady since some firms grow into large firms as they create new jobs. Small firms’ share of part-time workers (21 percent) is similar to large firms’ share (18 percent).

Source: U.S. Dept. of Commerce, Bureau of the Census: Statistics of U.S. Businesses, Current Population Survey.

How many small businesses are there? In 2008, there were 29.6 million businesses in the United States, according to Office of Advocacy estimates. Census data show that there were 6.0 million firms with employees in 2006 and 21.7 million without employees in 2007 (the latest available data). Small firms with fewer than 500 employees represent 99.9 percent of the 29.6 million businesses (including both employers and nonemployers), as the most recent data show there were about 18,000 large businesses in 2006. Source: Office of Advocacy estimates based on data from the U.S. Dept. of Commerce, Bureau of the Census, and U.S. Dept. of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.

How are small businesses financed? Commercial banks and other depository institutions are the largest lenders of debt capital to small businesses. They accounted for almost 65 percent of total traditional credit to small businesses in 2003. (This includes credit lines and loans for nonresidential mortgages, vehicles, equipment, and leases.) Credit cards account for much of the growth in small business lending over the past few years. For more information, see Advocacy’s annual publication, Small Business Lending in the United States (www.sba.gov/advo/research/ lending.html).

How do regulations affect small firms? Very small firms with fewer than 20 employees annually spend 45 percent more per employee than larger firms to comply with federal regulations. These very small firms spend four and a half times as much per employee to comply with environmental regulations and 67 percent more per em- ployee on tax compliance than their larger counterparts. For data broken out by industry, see www.sba.gov/advo/ research/rs264tot.pdf.

Whom do I contact about regulations? To submit comments on proposed regulations, send email to advocacy@sba.gov or visit Advocacy’s regulatory alerts page at www.sba.gov/advo/laws/law_regalerts.html. To inquire about unfair regulatory enforcement, contact SBA’s Office of the National Ombudsman at ombudsman@sba.gov.

What is the role of women, minority, and veteran entrepreneurs? Of the 23 million nonfarm businesses in 2002, women owned 6.5 million businesses, generating $940.8 billion in revenues, employing 7.1 million workers, and paying $173.7 billion in payroll. Another 2.7 million firms were owned equally by both women and men. Also in 2002, minorities owned 4.1 million firms that generated $694 billion in revenues and employed 4.8 million people.

Hispanic Americans owned 6.6 percent of all U.S. businesses; African Americans, 5 percent; Asian Americans, 4.6 percent; American Indians or Alaska Natives, 0.8 percent; and Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islanders, 0.1 percent. Veterans made up 14 percent of all owners.

In 2007, the overall rate of self-employment (unincorporated and incorporated) was 10 percent, and the rate was 7.1 percent for women, 7.4 percent for Hispanic Americans, 5.2 percent for African Americans, 10.1 percent for Asian Americans and Native Americans, and 14.4 percent for veterans. According to a recent study, service-disabled veterans were less likely than non-service-disabled veterans to be employed, and they had lower self-employment rates.

Source: U.S. Dept. of Commerce, Bureau of the Census, Survey of Business Owners; Office of Advocacy: Women in Business (www.sba.gov/advo/re- search/rs280.pdf) and Minorities in Business (www.sba.gov/advo/research/ rs298.pdf); Open Blue Solutions, 2007 (www.sba.gov/advo/research/ rs291tot.pdf), and Office of Advocacy: The Small Business Economy, 2009 (Table A.13, www.sba.gov/advo/research/sbe.html).

What research exists on the cost and availability of health insurance? For many years, the cost and availability of health insurance have been top small business concerns. These concerns are driven by premium increases and administrative costs. Advocacy research shows that: (1) insurers of small health plans have higher administrative expenses than those that insure larger group plans, and (2) employees at small firms are less likely to have coverage than the employees of larger entities.

A Kaiser Family Foundation study confirmed the connection between the size of a firm and whether it offers health insurance. The Kaiser survey shows that about half of businesses with fewer than 10 workers offer health benefits to their employees.

Overall in 2007, small firm employees were almost twice as likely as large firm employees to be uninsured (24.6 per- cent vs.12.6 percent, respectively).

Source: National Federation of Independent Business; Kaiser Family Foundation; Advocacy-funded research by Rose C. Chu and Gordon R. Trapnell, 2003 (www.sba.gov/advo/research/rs224tot.pdf); Joel Popkin and Company, 2005 (www.sba.gov/advo/research/rs262tot.pdf); and Econo- metrica, Inc., 2007 (www.sba.gov/advo/research/rs295tot.pdf); and Office of Advocacy: The Small Business Economy, 2009 (www.sba.gov/advo/ research/sbe.html).

How can I get more information?

For more information, visit Advocacy’s website: www.sba.gov/advo.

Direct questions to 202/205-6533 or email: advocacy@sba.gov.

15 Business Startups:
Start Small, Win Big!

You don’t need to have big bucks to launch your own small business. In fact, you can start at home working on a part-time or weekends-only basis and grow your new venture into a full-time enterprise. Running a business from home enables you to cut the costly overhead expenses associated with an outside facility, such as rent, utilities, furnishings, etc.

We’ve rounded up 15 great opportunities for you to consider right now that won’t break the bank and require no experience. If you have the desire and you are willing to focus on the success of your small business, you can make it happen. The business opportunities presented are listed in no particular order:

RUN A FUN PHOTO BOOTH: You’ve seen them at a wide variety of event: Wedding receptions,  Corporate events, Bar Mitzvah’s, Fundraisers, Trade shows, Holiday parties, County fairs, Marketing events, Social gatherings, High school / College dances..and many others! These moneymakers are recession-proof as no matter what state the economy is in, people are still holding these special events. Weddings alone are a $42 billion per year industry.

Photo booths are captivating and the entrepreneurs who run them are making tons of money on weekends, part-time or even running these little moneymakers on a full-time basis.

The best part of this business opportunity is that it only takes one person to operate the booth. According to research and the companies own website the average party/wedding will gross around $1,000 – $1,200 for its owner. In addition the company states that it only takes approximately $20 in materials per event on average. This means you will get quite an impressive return on your investment.The complete photo system will run you approximately $6,495.

Here is some of the information you can find at the company’s fun website (www.mojophotobooth.com):

What is Mojo Photo Booth? Mojo Photo Booth is the only commercial-grade, portable photo booth on the market that fits up to 10 guests. Mojo is a unique turn-key business opportunity with superior return on investment potential. Says the company, “We provide you with a Complete Package, which includes everything you need to start servicing events such as weddings, holiday parties, and corporate events. Mojo Photo Booth is an easily marketable and high demand service that provides your clients with exceptional guest entertainment. We pride ourselves in bringing you the only professional photo booth unit on the market that offers a true turn-key business with “one-person portability.”

How do the photo booths work? Your guest simply jumps in the booth, pushes the color or black & white photo button, and poses. The monitor will countdown while allowing a real-time view as pictures are taken instantly. Lab-quality photo’s print on the spot and will be ready by the time guests step out of the booth. “Our proprietary system was developed by in-house software engineers using the best technology available and is unmatched by anyone in the industry, “ says Mojo.

How soon will it take to begin servicing events? “Upon payment and completion of our sales agreement, we will send your Complete Package in 2-4 weeks. On average, it takes about 2 hours for initial installation and system configuration. After initial configuration it takes just 15-minutes for complete event setup. We suggest that you take some time to familiarize yourself with the photo booth equipment, but you will be able to start servicing events immediately.

Will I need a truck or a van for transportation? “No. Your complete operation will fit inside ANY passenger car, such as a Toyota Camry/Corolla, Honda Accord/Civic, Ford Fusion/Focus, or Chevy Impala/Malibu. Our patent pending system was specially designed for quick setup and easy transportation.

Do you offer any type of guarantee? “Our patent pending design and national recognition guarantees a unique business from a brand you can trust. We stand behind our product with an unconditional, 30-day money back guarantee.

You can learn more about the company and the business opportunity they offer by visiting www.mojophotobooth.com. The phone is: 888/484-mojo (6656).


According to the American Pet Products Association (APPA), the U.S. Pet Service Industry’s profits totaled approximately $51 billion last year. It also is estimated that American pet owners spent over $3.5 billion on grooming & boarding alone.

Roughly 62% of all U.S. households own a pet, which equates to more than 70 million homes; about 42% of which own a dog. It is no secret that dogs need constant supervision and attention, which is why so many people see the value in outside care.

Camp Bow Wow, the nation’s largest pet day and overnight care company proved to be a leader in this field, with revenues reaching $60 million in 2011, a $10 million increase from 2010.

Franchise highlights for Camp Bow Wow include:

• 20% year-over-year growth in revenues across Camps (individual franchise locations), which opened pre-2011;

• 5 new Camps opened and 12-15 are expected to open in 2012, many of which by preexisting franchise owners;

• Of the 109 in Camps in operation during 2010 and 2011, 103 experienced year-over-year growth in revenues;

You might not have the $100,000 in liquid capital required to start your own Camp Bow Wow franchise, but there are still plenty of opportunities to start your own pet business.

Consider a pet sitting business that you run from your home or from your client’s apartment or house. We recently spoke to Andrea Taylor in Boston, Massachusetts who makes an extra $500 a week caring for pets. Dog walking businesses are booming especially if you live in a busy apartment complex or high-rise full of corporate workers who are out all day or who travel a lot. You can look into pet grooming and consider a mobile grooming enterprise.

If you love pets, this is a wonderful category for you to consider now. Call the County Clerk’s office in your area to determine if any special licenses are required, especially for a pet grooming enterprise.

PERSONALIZED BOOKS FOR KIDS: You can make money as you help kids learn to read and build their self-esteem by launching your own Best Personalized Books For Kids business.  The company provides the software and supplies you need to get started producing books with licensed characters including Batman, Sesame Street, Garfield, Little Mermaid, Holiday and much more. You simply insert the child’s names, the names of a couple of his/her friends, the child’s age and hometown and you are on your way. It costs about a couple of thousand dollars to get started.

We’ve watched the crowds gather at malls when entrepreneurs set up their kiosk shops. The profit is big and you will have fun in the process. You can also sell these books on your website, at parties, via mail order and at outdoor street fairs and festivals.

Q: How long has Best been in business creating these books?

A: Best has been in the personalized books industry for over 20 years.

Q: What kind of computer and printer do I need to run this business?

A: All you need is an IBM compatible computer with Windows™ 98, 2000, ME or XP. Call Best to verify compatibility. We recommend Hewlett Packard black and white laser printers to print the text in our books. This will produce the highest quality finished product. If you currently have an ink jet or bubble jet printer, it may work. Call the companyfor details.

Q: Are there any renewal or yearly fees that I must pay?

A: Best has no renewal, dealership or franchise fees and there are no quotas that must be met. Get started today!

Q: How much are the supplies?

A: The books wholesale average is $3.00. You set the retail price. Current licensees retail books from $10.95 to $18.95. You determine your own profit.

Q: How long does it take to make a book for my customer?

A: You can make a book with just 4 easy steps in as little as 3 minutes!

To learn more, visit www.bestpersonalizedbooks.com or call 800/275-7770 or 972/250-1000.

ITALIAN ICE PUSH CART ENTER-PRISE: Popular in any region, you can start your own business selling Italian ice from a cute pushcart for less than $4300. with help from Little Jimmy’s Italian Ices & Push Carts company. The carts are colorful and fun and fit in most minivans or SUV’s. And the carts require no electricity or dry ice so you can sell your products anywhere.

Italian Ice is a dessert treat that has been around for centuries.  Little Jimmy’s Italian Ice recipe consists of a water-based, fat-free, dairy-free, cholesterol-free, and high fructose corn syrup-free gourmet dessert of many different flavors. Little Jimmy’s Italian Ice is a true Italian water ice that has the creaminess of sherbet or ice cream and never contains any dairy or non-dairy creamer. Their Italian ice is produced the old fashioned way in Elizabeth, New Jersey.

According to Little Jimmy’s, “Italian ice Pushcarts, concession trailers, trucks and kiosks are available.  Our Italian Ice recipe has remained unchanged for nearly 75 years.”

Little Jimmy’s Italian water Ice is sold at malls, stadiums, amusement parks, festivals, fairs, beaches, flea markets, camps, state parks, swim clubs, golf courses, resort hotels, carnivals, zoos, etc.

There is no experience required to start this business and you can get going right now in time for the super hot summer season. For more information on how you can get started visit www.ITALIANICE.net or call the company at 800/763-4348.

CARPET CLEANING: Carpets are here to stay. They are everywhere in homes and commercial facilities, hotels, casinos, industrial parks, professional offices, stores and many more locations.  For $2995, you can start your own cleaning business focusing on mainly carpets and by tying in with one of the recognized leaders in the field: Rotovac. (Rotovac can also help you start a tile and grout cleaning business, an upholstery cleaning venture, a flood restoration business and an air duct cleaning service.)

Most carpet cleaners today just use a manual scrub wand simply because it has been around for nearly 40 years.

The Rotovac gives you something new to market to your customers. The Rotovac operates as easy as an upright vacuum cleaner. The motors supply all the scrubbing muscle for you as the rotary vacuum heads thoroughly clean the carpet from all directions.  The company estimates that entrepreneurs can make anywhere from $75 to $150 an hour performing this service.

The Rotovac Powerwand was designed by Cliff Monson (inventor of the HydraMaster RX-20 carpet cleaning machine). The Rotovac was introduced at the 1996 Association of Specialists in Cleaning and Restoration (ASCR) national trade show in New Orleans..

Rotovac Corporation is headquartered in Bothell, WA. In addition to manufacturing and selling the Rotovac itself, the company has also distinguished itself as one of the leading factory-direct resellers of carpet cleaning equipment, including carpet cleaning extractors, truck mounts, and a wide variety of tools and accessories for the carpet cleaning professional.

To learn more, visit www.rotovac.com or call 888/768-6822 (Se Habla Espanol). You can watch a video at the website on how the system works.

TRUCK BED LINERS: The automotive specialty equipment industry continues to skyrocket with sales hitting $29 billion a year.

Scorpion is the worldwide leader in truck bed liners and protective coatings. Scorpion is a family owned and operated business since 1996 and continues to lead the way in truck bed liners. Located in central Indiana, Scorpion Truck Bed Liners has applicators in every state and in 20+ countries. The truck bed coatings come in 12 colors but can be customized to fit the needs of any client.

Scorpion continues to grow not only from their loyal, hard-working customer base but also from their growing number of regional/international distributors.

According to Scorpion, “We work extremely hard to ensure that each customer receives a quality product at a great price. Our bed liner system is composed of the highest quality polyurethanes that keeps your truck bed looking new for years to come.” Here are a few benefits of the Scorpion system.

• Extremely Tough and Durable

• Non-Skid

• UV Color Stability (your bed liner will not fade)

• Custom Color

• Custom Texture Options (from glass smooth to extremely rough)

• Anti-Static

• Lifetime Warranty

• Applicators in Every State

For more information on starting
your own truck bed liner business,
visit www.ScorpionCoatings.com or call 800/483-9087.

HARD SERVICE TILE CLEANING: For about $5500, you can launch your very own hard surface cleaning business and make money from a wide variety of residential and commercial customers.  The Master’s Touch (www.tmtopportunity.com) offers a complete turnkey tile and grout system cleaning business and on you can get started even if you have no experience.

Imagine pulling up to your client’s office, franchise, restaurant, etc. and taking your portable tile cleaning system out of your truck, van or car and leaving six-hours later with $1300. That is what one entrepreneur made for a day’s work. There are plenty of testimonials from the company on similar and even more lucrative case studies. One woman who uses The Master’s Touch system in her janitorial service said she made $1 million last year. Another entrepreneur took on a three-day job cleaning a potato processing plant and earned $12,000 for his work.

The company offers a 5 day training program and provides backup support, bi-weekly conference calls, a marketing system, ongoing technical support and financing, too. Visit the company website to learn more, watch a video on the system, and learn about their complete pricing systems or call the company at: 866/932-5353.

ENGRAVING ENTERPRISE: Not an artist, you say? No problem, say the folks at SCM. They have created a range of products to help anyone who can trace start their own high-profit engraving business. The company, based in Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin, has a turnkey system to meet any interest and budget. Prices start at approximately a few hundred dollars and goes up to $10,000.

You can engrave: large stone carving, wood, glass, corporate awards, gifts, metal, jewelry, eggs, scrimshaw, trophies, plaques and even focus on one product such as gun stock carving.

According to the company, they offer “the most technologically advanced handpiece on the market today, the revolutionary SCM engraver that operates at an amazing 400,000 revolutions per minute – yet, it’s light and easy to handle! Featuring an ultra-high-speed turbine and dual support bearings, it provides high-torque steady vibration-free action unmatched by any competitive handpiece. And it’s quality-backed by the best warranty in the business. It sets up in minutes, too: simply connect a few hoses, plug in the compressor, insert the preferred bit and you’re in business. The SCM system offers many engraving techniques, too, from single line cuts to precision line separation. Brush the material with light strokes to create illusions of depth. Apply different amounts of pressure for dramatic lines or a ‘feathered’ look. Add a totally new dimension by applying color to your work. Let your creativity run wild!”

Visit www.scmart.com or call 800/755-0261 to learn more about the company and how they can help you establish your own engraving enterprise.

LAUNCH AN ONLINE BUSINESS: You can start a business online selling products, books, a service and more. There are many options out there for entrepreneurs who want to establish a website.

One easy to use website “kit” is called “MyWebsite” (formally named  MyBusiness Site) from 1&1 Internet . Small to medium business owners can have a fully functional website in a matter of minutes with only a few clicks of a mouse even if they lack technical knowledge. The 200 different business type pre-designed templates offer hundreds of layout possibilities and many other features. You change the fonts, colors, add photos and take advantage of the company’s stock photo catalog.  The package is also perfect for small business owners who need to update their current website.

Business owners can choose from 3 different packages. The 1&1 MyWebsite Basic Package is $9.99 a month and offers website layouts, a Web address, email addresses, a guestbook, visitor counter, multiple Web pages, and much more.

For $19.99 biz owners can take advantage of the company’s best selling package, 1&1 MyWebsite Plus. This comes with all of the Basic Package features plus 12,500 pre-licensed images to enhance the site, an email marketing tool and an Industry News Service to keep clients current on their field.

The 1&1 MyWebsite Premium Package comes with all of the prior tools plus 1&1 SEO Ready Service to help your site achieve a better ranking in major search engines. This package is $29.99. All of the packages come with a free 30-day trial period.

The MyWebsite tools also include the ability to feature Flash movies and YouTube videos on your site, show product slideshows, Google maps with directions to your store or office, and more.

1&1 Internet, Inc. is a subsidiary of United Internet, a profitable public company with a market cap of $3 billion. 1&1 was founded in 1988 and hosts more than 11 million domain names, while more than 70,000 servers run on the company’s five state-of-the-art, green data centers. 1&1’s global community is approximately 10 million customer contracts strong. The company’s North American headquarters is located in Chesterbrook, PA. For more information, please contact the company at www.1and1.com, @1and1 on Twitter or 1-877-461-2631.

PHOTO MAGIC: The folks at CASI-QLT have been in business since 1977 offering entrepreneurs the opportunity to start and run their own businesses. We encourage you to visit the company website at www.qlt.com to learn about all of their offerings. One opportunity package is Photo Magic. Photo Magic presents the newest state of the art system in the photo novelty and personalization industry today. It is the only all-in-one system that combines the three hottest imaging technologies on the market today: Green Screen, 3-D and Photo Flip.

Green Screen Master Software. The core of Photo Magic is the company’s Green Screen Master Software. It is the fastest, high quality, shoot, add graphic and print solution on the market today, says the company.

Great graphics featuring backgrounds, overlays, 3-D effects and magazine covers. The collection of graphics is trend setting and custom made.

This revolutionary software affords you many options. Put a single person or a group in front of the White House, Disneyland, the Empire State Building, Grand Canyon, Mount Everest, The Pyramids or just about anything else you can imagine. Just think of the endless possibilities.

You can even quickly and easily create your own custom backgrounds! Take your customers picture with the President, a movie star or an athlete – you decide!

3-D Photo Feature. Discover the secrets of 3-D technology and what it can do for your business. From movies to packaging to televisions, 3-D is hot.

With Photo Magic you can process a 3-D as fast as a standard green screen image. That means total flexibility. Great for parties, corporate functions, trade shows,  weddings, and many other special events.

Just snap the photo of your customer and choose from our wide variety of backgrounds. Photo Magic blends your captured image and chosen background in a split second into a blended image that produces a 3-D effect when placed inside the special 3-D frames.

Photo Flip Feature. Photo Magic Photo Flip feature will take any 2 or more images you select and merge or interlace them together. The process takes just a few seconds and the printed output is affixed to the CASI-QLT special Photo Flip frames.

Photo Flip is a unique process. It creates the illusion of images that change instantly from one to another, moving images, morphing images, and 3-D images. At the center of the process is the company’s custom Photo Flip Frames.

The printout will “come to life” when inserted into our special Photo Flip frames. Tilt the frame up and you’ll see the first image. Now tilt it down and you’ll see the second image. Magic!

The Photo System 3000 packages is $3995. You can call 800/221-9832 or visit  their website www.qlt.com/biz/photo_magic for more details.

REINVENT YOURSELF BY LEARN-ING A TRADE: All market indicators point to a growing need for skilled tradespeople. From electricians and motorcycle repair entrepreneurs to computer programmers and digital game designers, there is a real opportunity to start a small business by developing and mastering a trade. There are many schools that can help you learn a new trade that will give you the confidence to start a business. Here are some of them. Contact the schools to review their offerings.

• American Home Inspectors Training Institute, 800-441-9411, www.ahit.com

• Allied Schools 22952 Alcalde Dr., Ste. 150 Laguna Hills, CA 92653, 800/,617-3513, www.homeinspectioncourse.com

• Foley-Belsaw Institute 6301 Equitable Road  Kansas City, MO 64120, 800/821-3452, www.foley-belsaw.com

• Penn Foster Career School 925 Oak Street  Scranton, PA 18515, 800/275-4410, www.PennFoster.edu

• PCDI 430 Technology Pkwy  Norcross, GA 30092, 800/957-5412, www.pcdi.com

• Stratford Career Institute PO Box 75005 Washington, DC 20013-0005,  800/254-4070, www.scitraining.com

• U.S. Career Institute,

MED ALERT: Innovative Software, LLC is a business & software development consulting company that has been in business since 1998 developing retail software, corporate software and business solutions for major corporations such as Pfizer, Aetna Healthcare, Cigna Healthcare, United Technologies and Northeast Utilities.

The company can help you start a home based business creating digital medical emergency information devices that can be attached to key chains. Medical Alert services are in high demand as consumers realize the necessity of having a comprehensive medical history readily available.

“We have been an accredited member of the Better Business Bureau since the year 2000 and strictly follow their best business practices. We are proud to maintain a 100% customer satisfaction record and encourage you to contact the BBB at 203-269-2700 for a free report about our company.

“Our MEDAlert™ Business Start-up Kit provides you with everything needed to follow your dreams and start your own profitable & flexible home based business. We are the leader in helping entrepreneurs nationally start their own medical alert business by providing a unique system that is very easy to use,” says the company.

The business can be started for less than $500 and the company estimates that an entrepreneur can earn as much as a six-figure income with the business opportunity system.

For info, contact Innovative Software, LLC, 93 Main Street, PO Box 365, Hebron, CT 06248. Phone 860/228-4144 or visit www.MEDAlertBusiness.com.

CRIME DOES PAY: Start a small business helping people defend themselves and feel more secure.

If you love following crime stories, watching Keith Morrison on Dateline and CSI, then consider starting a business selling security products. You can start a business ordering products wholesale and selling them on your own website or at trade shows, etc. with help from www.stsbo.com.  The company will help you establish your own retail business selling: pepper sprays, bug detectors, stun guns, Tasers, knives, child guards, personal alarms, spy equipment, hidden cameras and hundreds of other items.

To get started, visit the company website. You can order a wholesale catalog for $4.95 or plunge right in and receive a product kit for less than $100.

PICK UP PROFITS IN COMMER-CIAL CLEANING: Cleaning is recession-proof business. In every city you see office buildings everywhere and commercial cleaning services are being paid well to keep them clean! There is plenty of demand, just not enough good cleaning services to fill the demand. Foreclosures have added some additional work to commercial cleaning services. If you would like an opportunity to build a real future for you and your family owning a recession proof cleaning business, keep reading. Learn from the expert Brian Todd Nichols, over 28 years experience.

Brian has compiled a low investment business startup kit that will teach you how to launch your own office cleaning venture. Start on weekends or part-time while keeping your present job and grow your own business into a full-time enterprise. Brian estimates one can earn $50,000 working part-time and a six-figure income working full-time in office cleaning. The startup kit is $199.

Visit www.yourcleanfuture.com or call 866/364-4020 for details.

YOUR DREAM BUSINESS: This could be the year you start your dream business. Maybe you’ve had the idea for a long time but didn’t know how to start. Perhaps you didn’t have the time because you worked long hours in a job you didn’t really care about and now you are out of work. Perfect timing? All you need to do is to commit to starting your own dream enterprise.

Make a list of all the questions you have about starting this business. Go online, read, research, talk to others in the field and learn the answer to every question you have.

If you don’t have a business selected, make a list of all the things you love to do and really enjoy. In another column make a list of all of your skills, talents, and experience. Where the two columns meet or intersect could possibly be the answer to your dream biz.

For example, say you love golf. And, in the second column you say you are good at and experienced at putting together sales meetings and conferences. Your dream business might to be an organizer for sports companies at trade shows.

Another example might be your love of gardening. And column two specifies that you are a great detailed worker. Consider starting a perennial garden design company.  Or, you love biking. Start a business selling bike accessories or booking bike tours to eco-friendly destinations. The possibilities are endless.                         •

eBay Small Business Center & sbomag.com Perfect Together!

We are proud to announce that the new eBay Small Business Center has invited

Small Business Opportunities to become one of their top content providers along with the U.S. Small Business Administration and the National Federation of Independent Business Owners. We’ll also be providing content to the eBay Tax Center along with the IRS.

You can follow our features on the eBay Small Business Center by
visiting http://cc.ebay.com/small-business-info/


Congress created the SBA’s Office of Advocacy in 1976 to protect, strengthen, and effectively represent the nation’s small businesses within the federal government. As part of this mandate, the office conducts policy studies and economic research on issues of concern to small business and publishes data on small business characteristics and contributions. For small business resources, statistics, and research, visit the Office of Advocacy’s home page at www.sba.gov/advo


What type of interests or skills do I have that could translate into running a small business? Do you love holidays and gift giving?  You could start a personal shopping service or launch a gift basket business.  Do you love children?  How about a day care center?  Use your imagination.  No one can tell you what business you can best start and run.  That’s up to you. What types of businesses are needed in your community?  Is there an errand service?  Could your neighborhood use one?  Are there businesses that would use your errand service?  Are residential customers a possibility?  Could you start a food delivery service, delivering meals-to-go from already established restaurants that don’t have the time or the inclination to deliver their own fare?  You could start a business providing this service.  Ask yourself: what is needed in this region and could I do it? Find a niche and fill it.

Category: Magazine, Small Business Opportunities, Small Business Opportunities July 2012

  • Mike Chadwick

    Customer service is important to me, as I expect it is important to most people. The product from Mojo Photo Booths itself is okay, but this is so vastly overshadowed by the poor customer service experience that I cannot recommend this to others. There were logistical problems with checkout and paying the invoice. There were inconsistencies in their web site information from one product to the next. When the packages arrived, there were pieces missing from the packing list, or in some cases I was told “Oh, yeah, that doesn’t come with your model.” They charge a 15% restocking fee so that they can really discourage anyone from sending this unit back. That’s not standing behind your product.

    The documentation which came with the unit was insufficient for anyone that isn’t very tech-savvy (which fortunately, I am). Throwing a bunch of wires and parts at someone without any sort of diagram showing what connects to what and where, shows a lack of attention to detail and a lack of concern over the customer’s ability to use the product successfully. To make matters worse, the very first time I set it up, one of the four feet on the booth frame snapped off. Cheap plastic junk.

    Whenever I expressed concern over these things, and about the missing pieces from the shipment, the sales rep (Ken Kay) seemed inconvenienced and even bothered by my request. When I recently experienced an urgent and time-sensitive technical problem and sought support, I was told that support requests required an appointment and no one would be able to help me. There was nothing in the documentation that came with the product that indicated support would not be available unless you made an appointment. Seriously, if someone has a technical problem and has a job to perform with the booth, how are they supposed to wait until the next day (or later) to get assistance? The girl on the phone’s response to my urgent need was, and I quote, “Well, sorry.”

    When I complained to the support email address and copied the sales rep on the complaint, the support staff wrote me an email back the next day which not only didn’t address my concern, it was just a copy and paste from their document that came with the unit. Of course I had already tried that solution, to no avail. The much more disturbing aspect of that email was Ken Kay’s instruction to the support staff, which was carelessly included in the reply portion of the email: “Can you call this bitch please”

    This is apparently Mojo’s approach to customer service: If you aren’t technically savvy, tough. If you have an urgent problem and need assistance, but don’t make an appointment in advance, too bad. If you bother us, you’re a bitch.

    If you’re considering doing business with this company, you’d better be completely prepared to do everything without any real help. They are careless in their packing, they are careless in the documentation, and they could not care less about providing support. Once they get your money, they don’t want to hear from you.