The Jamestown area has seen an increase in small business development over the past year, and local business advisers have “Great year” 2023 for small business.
When asked if the Small Business Development Center at Jamestown Community College has seen an increase in small business development over the past year, Director Dr. Courtney Curatro said: “Without a doubt” SBDC has “absolutely” Throughout 2022, the region saw an increase in SME start-ups and development.
“A lot of people are joining us now that we are trying to overcome COVID-19, and people are putting their ideas into action and shaping ideas for startup businesses.” Curatro said.
Based on data collected by SBDC, Curatolo believes multiple factors have contributed to the growth of small businesses in the region over the past year.
One of the main reasons small businesses are on the rise is the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“When someone has been laid off in the last two years because of the pandemic or whatever, many people say, ‘Hey, this is your chance to start your own business. intend to” she said. “These people jumped into small businesses and many of them have had great success.”
Curatolo said the end of the year and the beginning of the new year is another factor in increasing interest in people starting small businesses.She said SBDC helps “Lots of clients” In January and February, make a New Year’s resolution to start a new business.
As small businesses grow in the region, Curatolo said SBDC can be used to help small business owners succeed. She explained that SBDC is a free service for small businesses with less than her 500 employees.
There are 22 small business development centers throughout New York State. Local SBDC serves businesses in Chautauqua, Cattaraugus, and Allegany counties. Curatoro said SBDC has outreach offices in both Dunkirk and Olean, although most of its regional offices are in Jamestown. SBDC also plans to expand his operations in Allegany County in 2023.
“We have 4 certified business advisors who can help you with everything from developing a business plan, financial forecasting, creating a marketing plan, helping you launch your website, implementing e-commerce on your website, etc. .” Curatro said.
SBDC also has an online business academy with a variety of courses that you can watch for free at any time. SBDC also offers two of his paid certification courses on social media and entrepreneurship essentials.
Some of SBDC’s free online courses stemmed from the COVID-19 pandemic, and according to Curatolo, SBDC said many local businesses don’t have websites or are not suitable for e-commerce. He realized he didn’t have a website designed for.
“They weren’t ready to move into the tech world for their business when COVID-19 started.” she said. “We have developed two classes that we offer for free. We will show you how to create websites on different platforms and how to implement e-commerce on your website from different platforms.”
In addition to SBDC’s online courses, the organization also offers one-on-one training opportunities, Curatolo said.
Heading into 2023, Curatolo said she “really excited,” 2023 is “Great year” For local small businesses. According to Curatolo, SBDC plans to acquire. “Back to Basics” By prioritizing opportunities for business outreach and making a difference in our communities after the COVID-19 pandemic,
“Before COVID-19, we were doing a lot of outreach to different communities, working with a lot of minorities, and a lot of social ideas were being generated in different libraries in the area.” she said. “Our goal for 2023 is to really get back to these ideas that were tackling COVID-19. increase.”
Curatoro said SBDC “Go out into society” It also introduces a variety of services that are freely available to local SMEs.
Curatolo is due in 2023 “exciting” It’s been a year for SBDC and local small businesses, and she acknowledged that small businesses continue to face many challenges.
Whether it’s state laws, legal issues, state and federal regulations, tax information, or personnel concerns, small business owners often have to deal with many concerns at the same time, Curatoro said.
“I think the biggest problem is that as a business owner you have to wear 10 different hats and know a little bit about each one.” she said. “The good thing is that our advisors are really helpful in different areas.”
While each small business is not fully knowledgeable or equipped to handle every aspect of their business, SBDC helps small business owners adhere to each process of developing a local business. It provides services, Curatolo said.
Curatoro added that SBDC has a Business Permit Center that assists Chautauqua County businesses in the process of obtaining the necessary permits and licenses to own and operate a business. She explained that it can be difficult for companies to stay up to date on the latest laws, restrictions and laws in the business world. To alleviate this stress, SBDC partners with local businesses to raise awareness of the changes needed to keep businesses compliant with local, state, and federal regulations.
Curatolo said small businesses interested in the free services offered by SBDC should start with the Jamestown website (www.sbdcjcc.org) and the Online Business Academy website (sbdcbusinessacademy.com/). increase.
“They can call us or go to our website.” Curatro said. “We have a lot of resources on our website. We are also active on Facebook and LinkedIn, so you can always visit our Facebook page.”
Curatolo said SBDC is now focused on using social media. “important part” of the small business community. She explained that social media provided her next opportunity for SBDC. “Showcase” Various small businesses in the area.
Everything SBDC does to help small businesses is private, but Curatolo said the organization can help local businesses by offering marketing opportunities on SBDC’s Facebook page and other social media platforms. said.
“I don’t want to be the community’s best kept secret.” she said. “We want everyone to know we are here to help. We are free and confidential and we have so many professionals on our team to help.”