Business Resource Listing

We have created a list of resources for you to research depending on your needs. More content goes here.

Business Planning Tools

SCORE Business Plans for Established Business

The real value of creating a business plan is not in having the finished product in hand; rather, the value lies in the process of researching and thinking about your business in a systematic way.

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SCORE Business Plans for Startups

Our business plans are suitable for all types of businesses. Use them as is or modify for your company. We’re here to help.

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SBA Business Plan

A business plan is an essential roadmap for business success. This living document generally projects 3-5 years ahead and outlines the route a company intends to take to grow revenues.

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Score Business Planning Tools for Nonprofits

This guide is about a great American institution and a powerful agent for change: the non-profit charitable organization.

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Business Resources

SBA Local Assistance

A map of all local business assistance in Michigan.

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The Michigan Small Business Development Center’s

The Michigan Small Business Development Center offers expert assistance at no cost to entrepreneurs looking to start or grow a business.

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SCORE Finding a Mentor

We stand ready to help you succeed! Choose from the three options below to connect with a mentor.

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City of Grand Rapids Business Guide

This guide includes resources and City requirements for a typical business and may not be exhaustive.

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Small Business Resource Center

The Small Business Resource Center is located on the Lower Level of our Main Library and provides the timely and reliable business information you need to start, manage, and grow your business.

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SBA Resource Guide

Getting help to start, market and manage your business.

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Small Biz Daily

Understanding the difference between personal and business credit is step one. Watch to understand the importance of the D&B D-U-N-S Number, the basics of D&B scores and ratings, and clear up misconceptions about business credit to help grow your business.

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Chase for Business

Make the most of every opportunity with resources to guide you. We’re here to help you manage your money today and tomorrow.

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Business USA

BusinessUSA implements a “no wrong door” approach for small businesses and exporters by using technology to quickly connect businesses to the services and information relevant to them, regardless of where the information is located or which agency’s website, call center, or office they go to for help.

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Co-Working Space

Blueprint Collaborative

Blueprint Collaborative is an exciting co-working and incubator space specifically for high-performing entrepreneurs and small businesses focusing in the Construction, Real Estate, and Design industry. Are you tired of your current job, and ready to embark on your entrepreneurial journey? Are you ready to stop working out of your basement, and expand your business? Are you looking to surround yourself with people who think differently? Our co-working environment and collaborative office culture might be the perfect fit for you and your team.

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The Muskegon Innovation Hub

The Muskegon Innovation Hub (the Hub) is a business innovation center that provides coaching, funding, networking, and a synergistic work environment to help businesses and entrepreneurs maximize their growth potential. We are a key partner in the region’s innovation ecosystem, supporting startup businesses, entrepreneurs, and corporate innovation teams.

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Warehaus Holland

At the Warehaüs we believe that giving small companies and freelancers the opportunity to work in a social environment encourages innovation and collaboration. At Warehaus, we have a receptionist, comfortable work areas with the option of furnished offices and common area, as well as the added bonus of affordable hourly subcontracting help on clerical and administrative work.

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The Factory

The Factory is a coworking community in Grand Rapids especially suited for freelancers, small teams, and gatherings.

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Credit Reports

D & B D-U-N-S Number

The D&B D-U-N-S® Number is a unique nine-digit identifier for businesses. It is used to establish a business credit file, which is often referenced by lenders and potential business partners to help predict the reliability and/or financial stability of the company in question.

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Experian

Experian unlocks the power of data to create opportunities for consumers, businesses, and society.

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Equifax

Take control with a one-stop credit monitoring and ID theft protection solution from Equifax.

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Trans Union

We aim to be more than just a credit reporting agency. We’re a sophisticated, global risk information provider striving to use information for good.

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Annual Free Report

Each of the three major reporting agencies keeps its own records that could differ slightly, so you will want to request a copy from each of them. The three agencies have set up one central website, toll-free phone number, and mailing address through which you can order your free annual credit report.

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Culinary Incubators

Kitchen 242

Kitchen 242 is a commercial kitchen in downtown Muskegon located at the Muskegon Farmers Market on Western Avenue next to the Post Office. The kitchen provides a rent-able facility for food business entrepreneurs to prepare their products in a commercial kitchen. Community kitchen space is also available where cooking classes and culinary events can be held.

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Can-Do Kitchen

Providing commercial kitchen space, food business incubation, and workshops to entrepreneurs.

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Facility Kitchens

Commercial Rental Kitchen for licensed food production in west Michigan.

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Downtown Market Grand Rapids

The Grand Rapids Downtown Market is home to 21 indoor market vendors, 2 full service restaurants, monthly outdoor market events, hands-on cooking classes, private event venues, a state-of-the-art incubator kitchen, rooftop greenhouses, and more… welcome to your next fun food experience!

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Doing Business in Michigan

Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA)

The Corporations, Securities & Commercial Licensing Bureau (CSCL) supports business growth and job creation while protecting the health, safety, and welfare of Michigan’s citizens through a simple, fair, efficient, and transparent regulatory structure.

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State License Search

Not every business in Michigan is required to be licensed by the State of Michigan. To find out if your new venture could require a state license, use this search feature to search our licenses list to see if you need a license or permit.

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Michigan Business Taxes

The tax is imposed on the business income of all taxpayers (not just corporations) with business activity in Michigan, subject to the limitations of federal law.

 

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Business Start-Up and Operating Guidance

The Michigan Small Business Development Center provides counseling, training, research, and advocacy for start-ups, existing small businesses and innovative tech companies.

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Michigan Economic Development Corporation

There’s a lot happening in Michigan that makes it a great place to do business. Like lower business taxes. A world-class talent pool. And a strategic location. All this helps make Michigan the economic comeback story of the nation.

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Start or Grow a Business in Michigan

Find all the government programs and advisors to help you expand, export, or open a business here.

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Government Contracts

North American Industry Classification System (NAICS)

The North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) is the standard used by Federal statistical agencies in classifying business establishments for the purpose of collecting, analyzing, and publishing statistical data related to the U.S. business economy.

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Federal Procurement Opportunities

Government buyers are able to publicize their business opportunities by posting information directly to FedBizOpps via the Internet.

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DTMB Central Procurement

In accordance with the Management and Budget Act, the office sets policies and procedures for purchasing across state departments and manages all aspects of high-level, complex bids to help state agencies achieve their missions and ensure the best value for Michigan residents.

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Grants & Loans

SBA Linc

Connecting Borrowers with SBA Approved Lenders

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SBA Loan Programs

SBA offers a variety of loan programs for very specific purposes. Take some time to study the programs described in this section, to see if you qualify to participate.

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Eileen Fisher

The EILEEN FISHER supports innovative, women-owned companies that are beyond the start-up phase and ready to expand their business and their potential for positive social and environmental impact.

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Business Owners Idea Cafe

At Idea Cafe, we’re passionate about helping our fellow small business owners every way we possibly can. So we’re digging into our own pockets to make cash awards to deserving entrepreneurs.

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Human Resources

Workplace Poster Requirements for Small Businesses and Other Employers

Some of the statutes and regulations enforced by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) require that notices be provided to employees and/or posted in the workplace. DOL provides free electronic copies of the required posters and some of the posters are available in languages other than English.

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Small Business in HR Solutions

With so many federal, state, local, and industry requirements governing the HR and employment landscape, it can be difficult to keep up. And, the cost of noncompliance can be substantial for small business owners. Our HR Solutions in RUN Powered by ADP® (RUN) provide you with tools and resources to help you stay in compliance.

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Keyword Research & SEO

Google Trends

What’s happening currently in the world of search. Get niche business ideas here.

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Google AdWords

Be seen by customers at the very moment that they’re searching on Google for the things you offer. And only pay when they click to visit your website or call.

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Google

Google is a popular search engine.

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Online Courses

SCORE Online Workshops

Find local, educational sessions on a myriad of topics ranging from business planning to marketing and financing.

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SBA Learning

SBA’s suite of tools can help you at any stage of your business venture. From initial counseling and business planning to contracting with the government and finding seminars to grow your business – there’s something for every entrepreneur to get the help they need. Let us help you find what you’re looking for today.

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Resources for Veterans

Browse Resources for Veterans

In a few quick steps, this questionnaire will guide you to the most relevant federal, state, and local services, tools, trainings, and opportunities, that can help you start or expand your Veteran-owned small business.

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SBA Resources

8(a) Business Development Program

Created to help small, disadvantaged businesses compete in the marketplace.

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HubZone

HUBZone program helps small businesses in urban and rural communities gain preferential access to federal procurement opportunities.

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The Small Business Innovation Research Program

The SBIR program encourages domestic small businesses to engage in Federal R&D that has the potential for commercialization.

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SBA Loans

SBA participates in a number of loan programs designed for business owners who may have trouble qualifying for a traditional bank loan.

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SBA Michigan

Stay connect and informed on all things business in Michigan.

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Franchise

Learn more how franchising can be a great option for starting your own business.

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Size Up

Size Up

SizeUp will help you manage and grow your business by benchmarking it against competitors, mapping your customers, competitors, and suppliers, and locating the best places to advertise.

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Social Platform Cheat Sheets

Social Media Cheat Sheet 5.0

A Marketer’s Guide to Today’s Platforms

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2017 Social Media Image Sizes Cheat Sheet

Social media platforms are forever changing the image sizes and formats, so to keep you all updated I have re-created the 2016 social media image sizes cheat sheet and updated it to 2017.

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Start-up Funding

Capital Community Angel Investors

Capital Community Angel Investors is a small group of Greater Lansing angel investors who help entrepreneurs succeed by providing them with early-stage capital. Our members invest their dollars and experiences into Michigan-based start-up and early-stage companies.

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Bridge Street Capital

Bridge Street Capital is connecting profitable growth companies to the private equity capital we manage.

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BioStar Ventures

BioStar Ventures is a strategic venture capital partnership focused on accelerating value creation for medical device and connected health technologies in cardiovascular and orthopedic medicine.

 

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Beringea

Beringea is a private equity firm with more than 25 years of investing experience in a range of sectors.

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Belle Michigan

The BELLE Michigan Fund, LP is an early stage investment fund building great companies in Michigan, the Midwest, and other regions. We provide a premier source of human and financial capital to women-led companies. We look for capital-efficient enterprises with a unique product or service that fill an urgent market need.

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Baird Capital

Baird Capital’s Venture Capital team partners with entrepreneurs to build innovative, high-growth companies within the Technology & Services and Healthcare sectors.

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Augment Ventures

Augment invests in passionate teams that are working on products and solutions to solve real problems. We work alongside entrepreneurs to recruit first customers, build national and international alliances and hire talent to strengthen operational and leadership teams.

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Aria Ventures

Aria Ventures provides critical early stage development services in a unique model that is completely performance-driven.

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Arbor Partners

Arbor Partners provides access to long-term capital, experienced support and an extensive network of strategic contacts to entrepreneurs who share our commitment to building tomorrow’s great technology companies.

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Amherst Fund

Amherst Fund team seeks to contribute more to the operating company than just financial capital. We invest only when we can partner with a management team to purposefully set and diligently execute a strategy that makes the most of the market trends – for the good of the company and all its stakeholders.

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Accelerate Michigan

The Accelerate Michigan Innovation Competition is open to any early stage business — from anywhere in the world. We’re looking for companies that have a strong technology or concept and serious growth potential. If you think that $500,000 would give your company the boost to move it to the next level – please apply to compete.

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Apjohn Ventures

Apjohn Ventures Fund is a new venture capital firm based in Kalamazoo, Michigan established to invest primarily in early-stage life sciences companies across the Midwest.

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Trademark/Patents

Trademarks, Service Marks and Insignia

The distinctions between a trademark, service mark and trade name are important in understanding the functions each serves.

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Intellectual Property

Are you thinking about filing a patent? Are you trying to understand other areas of intellectual property – i.e., copyrights and trademarks? This questionnaire will guide you though the steps of understanding and protecting your intellectual property.

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Patents

Applying for a patent successfully requires a strong understanding of the application process. This is the first step to a successful application.

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Trademark

Before you apply for a trademark, you should familiarize yourself with the basics. Determine if you need a trademark or another form of Intellectual Property protection.

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US Government Grants

Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer Programs

The Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Program and the Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Program are two competitive grant programs that ensure the nation’s small, high-tech, innovative businesses are a significant part of the Federal government’s research and development efforts.

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Grants.gov

Apply for grants by creating a workspace. Workspace enables you and your colleagues to fill out web forms and apply together.

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Explore Government Contracting

Grants.gov offers help with finding and applying for federal grants.

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Webinars

SCORE Webinars

SCORE is a nonprofit association dedicated to helping small businesses get off the ground, grow and achieve their goals through education and mentorship. We have been doing this for over fifty years.

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SBA Learning Center

SBA’s suite of tools can help you at any stage of your business venture. From initial counseling and business planning to contracting with the government and finding seminars to grow your business – there’s something for every entrepreneur to get the help they need.

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Women Owned Business Resources

Michigan Women’s Marketplace

Welcome to the Michigan Women’s Marketplace, a non-profit women’s business center and community, offering a directory of women business owners, access to business organizations, a calendar of events and a training center.

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Women Selling to Federal Government

The U.S. government is the largest single purchaser of goods and services in the world, awarding approximately $500 billion in contracts every year.

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Starting and Managing

SBA provides resources to help women entrepreneurs launch new businesses, grow their businesses and compete in the global marketplace. With our online resources, financing opportunities and Women’s Business Centers, we’re here to help you succeed.

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Women Owned Small Business

The WOSB Federal Contract Program was implemented in February 2011 with the goal of expanding the number of industries where WOSB was able to compete for business with the federal government.

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Women’s Business Center at Cornerstone Alliance

To provide women and others from diverse backgrounds, many of whom are facing social or economic barriers, with opportunities to develop the skills and acquire the knowledge needed to achieve financial independence.

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Young Entrepreneurs (Training)

Young Entrepreneurs

The Young Entrepreneurs Essential Guide to Starting a Business will help you learn how to start out as a young entrepreneur.

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Opportunity Youth

Opportunity youth are the 6.7 million young Americans who are out of school and out of work. We have a unique opportunity to match these young people who are ready and willing to work with employers who need their help to build and secure their business future—and with them, a stronger economy.

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