How America’s SBDC can help your small business
Starting and running a small business is an all-consuming endeavor, and anyone who does it can usually use some guidance. There’s an organization that’s ready to help small business owners at every stage of their journey, and that help is often free or available at low cost.
Meet America’s SBDC
America’s SBDC is a nationwide network of Small Business Development Centers which provide no-cost business consulting and low-cost training to new and existing businesses. There are almost 1,000 local centers which are hosted by local colleges and universities, state economic development agencies, and private partners. America’s SBDC is partially funded through a partnership with the U.S. Small Business Administration.
According to the America’s SBDC website, SBDCs help create a new business every 26 minutes, a new job every 5.7 minutes, $100,000 in financing every 8.8 minutes, and $100,000 in new sales every 7.2 minutes.
Local SBDCs offer a wide range of services, including:
- Free business consulting
- Business planning
- Advice on accessing capital
- International trade
- Free and at-cost training
- Technology development
- Regulatory compliance
New and existing businesses can get in-person or virtual advice from experienced business advisors. America’s SBDC advisors are well versed in the requirements to open and run a business, and in programs that offer support to small businesses. They offer specialized advice to veterans, women, people of color and those who are disabled as they navigate the path of entrepreneurship. They support businesses in cities, suburbs and rural areas.
Training programs and workshops
Local SBDC chapters offer training programs and workshops for start-ups and existing businesses, on both general and specific topics. Topics include the basics of starting a business, writing a business plan, understanding business financials, importing and exporting, marketing basics, and more. There are also workshops on specific business tools and platforms like QuickBooks, Google My Business, Shopify and more.
Since each state has different requirements for starting a business, local SBDCs can provide specific training on the step-by-step process for opening a business in your state. Find your local ASBDC office by entering your state or zip code here.