Many businesses, government and nonprofit organizations have set up home pages on the World Wide Web of the Internet where you can browse through or download helpful business information, view videos and catalogues, and place orders for merchandise, in some cases. Some of the more useful sites for small businesses include the ones listed below.

  • ASK.COM and GOOGLE -- But first, if you can't find what you need at any of the sites listed below, you may want to try, a remarkably slick, intelligent new type of search engine (more like a genie, actually) that seems to understand most questions you may ask it in English, and does an amazing job of finding answers for you, using the resources of all of the major Web search engines. While not specifically business oriented, using is free, and it may at times make you feel like you're living in a Star Trek episode, asking "Computer" to answer your questions about almost anything in the galaxy. And, of course, you can find answers to almost anything on (nearly) everyone's favorite search engine:


  • ANSWERS TO YOUR QUESTIONS. -- Become an expert or ask an advisor about anything from financial advice to technical support at this question-and-answer community.

  • LANGUAGE TRANSLATION ON THE WEB -- If you need to read web pages that are in a foreign language, and can't afford to hire an interpreter, the search engine can translate the web pages from any of a wide range of major languages into English, or vice versa. While the translations are not perfect, they are pretty good, and are free. You can even type in text on-screen or select a foreign-language web page and see it instantly translated between English and any of the other languages. Check it out next time you are trying to read a foreign web page, and are straining your memory banks, struggling to remember your high school French or Spanish....


  • SBA.GOV -- The Small Business Administration has a Web site that provides tips for starting, financing, and expanding a small business. This is also a useful site for locating the Web address (and real address) of the Small Business Development Center or S.C.O.R.E. chapter nearest you, where you can obtain counseling assistance for your small business. The SBA site is at the following Web address:

  • BUSINESS.USA -- This site includes many links to other Web sites and includes information on almost every subject for anyone who has dealings with the U.S. federal government. The Web address of the site is:

  • IRS -- The Internal Revenue Service has a Web site from which you can download tax forms and instructions and obtain other tax information, including downloads of free tax publications. You can download the forms and other items to your computer or fill in forms and print them out, if needed. You'll need Adobe Acrobat (free) or another such "reader" program to view and/or print out the files you download. The IRS Web address is:

  • EDGAR -- The SEC (U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission) Web site contains corporate filings that have been submitted to the SEC under the securities laws, including 10K's, 10Q's and other forms. You can access the EDGAR database to search for information about any public company, at this Web address:

  • SEC HOME PAGE -- The Securities and Exchange Commission web site contains a wide range of information on federal securities laws and their enforcement. The SEC web address is:

  • SEC LAW -- The SEC LAW web site, which is a private (unofficial) site, provides updated information on SEC actions, including a section on small business matters, proposed regulations, and SEC news tidbits. Its Web address is:

  • THE WHITE HOUSE -- The White House has set up this popular Internet site, which offers information on many areas of the executive branch of the federal government, among other things. The address on the Web is:

  • CONGRESS.GOV -- Not to be outdone by the executive branch, the U.S. Congress has set up CONGRESS.GOV, a huge collection of accessible information about the workings of the Congress, including the full text of House and Senate legislation. You can now read the full text of pending bills for yourself, without needing to hire an expensive and Gucci-shod Washington lobbyist to tell you what is in a proposed new bill. Access this site at:

  • LIBRARY OF CONGRESS -- You can also access the enormous resources of the Library of Congress, at the following web site:


  • CALIFORNIA GOVERNMENT AGENCIES -- California is almost like another, slightly smaller, version of the federal government, with more state bureaucracies than you can count (including 3 different state tax collection agencies you must deal with). Until recently, the State of California website had a handy listing of all the state agencies, with links to each. However, that page is no longer available, so you will need to go to the state home page and enter the name of the agency whose site you want to visit (if you know its name):

    California state agencies

  • NEW YORK STATE GOVERNMENT INFORMATION -- The State of New York provides a single point of access to all state agencies, at the URL below (but note that this URL is changed frequently):

    N.Y. Government Agencies

  • WASHINGTON, D.C. HOME PAGE -- For information on doing business in the District of Columbia, a good starting point is the Washington, D.C. home page:



  • LEGAL AND TAX GUIDES (EBOOKS) FOR YOUR STATE -- Ronin Software publishes Kindle ebooks such as "Starting and Operating a Business in California" for each of 32 states and the District of Columbia, each of which is updated either annually or biennially. Written and updated regularly since the 1980s by a Harvard lawyer and "Big 4" CPA, each authoritative and comprehensive Kindle edition in this much-praised series is approximately 500 pages if printed out. For more information, see: EBOOKS INFORMATION PAGE

    For ordering information and to see when the edition for your state was last fully revised and updated, see:


  • ACCOUNTING SOFTWARE ADVICE - A free online resource with reviews and comparisons of accounting software.

  • PAYSLIP CALCULATOR - Calculate and print a payslip -- for free.

  • THE ATTORNEYS FORUM - Legal help and Discussion Forums. Get free legal advice from Attorneys in your area.

  • FREE BUSINESS GREETING E-CARDS -- A helping hand, a warm gesture, a little fun and laughter can go a long way to liven up your office space, and help spruce up your work relationships. So whether you want to congratulate a colleague, or thank a client/ co-worker/ boss or joke around with an office pal, jus' pick from's wide array of delightful, free 'n' animated business greeting cards and make work fun.

  • CB VATAMERICA (RECOVERY OF EUROPEAN VALUE-ADDED TAXES) -- For U.S. companies that incur European value added-taxes (VAT taxes) in European countries, from activities as wide-ranging as imports/exports, trade shows, or employees' expenses of traveling on business in Europe, VATAmerica offers help in the often complex task of obtaining full or partial refunds of such VAT taxes, and does so at interbank currency exchange rates, which can save you a bundle when you do receive a VAT refund.

  • PEERSPECTIVES -- Formerly the "Entrepreneurial Edge," this is probably the best site for general business information on the Internet, created by the Edward Lowe Foundation, a private philanthropic organization. It contains a vast number of business resources, and you can order whole books or for a modest fee, pick a subject and use their "fax-on-demand" service to fax specific information back to you on the subjects you select, for a nominal charge. Visit Peerspectives Edge at the following Web address:

  • BUSINESS BANKRUPTCY -- HOW CHAPTER 11 CAN HELP -- If you've tried everything, even maxed out your business credit cards, it may be time for you to consider a Chapter 11 bankruptcy -- a type of bankruptcy usually reserved for businesses. For a good discussion of the pros and cons of filing under Chapter 11, check out the following website at

  • ISO ONLINE -- The International Standards Organization in Geneva, Switzerland, operates this highly useful informational site on ISO 9000 and ISO 14000 standards, which are becoming increasingly important quality assurance standards for companies operating in international markets. Its web address is:

  • THE COPYRIGHT WEBSITE -- Contains helpful information and advice on how to copyright your writing or other creative works, including a special emphasis on copyright laws as they apply to Web publishing. The Web address for this site is:

  • AMERICAN CITY BUSINESS JOURNALS -- This site, maintained by the publisher of business journals in more than two dozen major U.S. cities, contains links to each of those local business journals, including sample articles you may view on-line, and the ability to sign up for a subscription to the journal (if any) in your city. The Web address is:

  • INCORPORATE IN DELAWARE OR NEVADA -- AS AN OUT OF STATE CORPORATION. -- Incorporate your business in Delaware or Nevada, or in any other state, quickly and economically, using Northwest Registered Agent:

  • LIMITED LIABILITY COMPANY FORMATION. -- Northwest Registered Agent LLC offers limited liability company formation services in any of the 50 states or Washington, D.C., setting up a corporation or LLC for a flat fee of $100.

  • CORPORATE OR LLC REGISTERED AGENT SERVICES. -- Northwest Registered Agent LLC will act as your registered agent in any state where your company does business, for a flat fee of $125 per state. The company has physical locations in all 50 states and the District of Columbia to serve you. (State laws generally require any corporation or LLC that does business in a state to have a registered agent in that state, for service of process and other purposes.)

  • LAWINFO.COM LEGAL INFORMATION SITE. -- A very comprehensive site, offering legal information and online legal forms to consumers, small business, and attorneys. One of the most complete sites on the Internet for U.S. legal information, much of it free:

  • SMALL BUSINESS WEBSITES THAT WORK. -- Companion site to the book of the same name, including excerpts and extensive resources for profitable online business. Published in the U.K., the information on how to run a profitable small business website is invaluable in any country:

  • ITSHAREWARE:. -- IT Shareware - A shareware and freeware collection with reviews and free downloads. Categories include games, Internet & network utilities, screensavers, audio & video, graphics, and business applications.


  • TELEPHONE AREA CODES LOOK-UP. -- Handy site if you want to look up an area code or do a reverse search by entering a phone number, to find out whose number it is.

  • UNITED STATES ZIP CODES. -- Useful site for looking up any U.S. ZIP code or address, to instantly locate it on a map.


The following are some of the best web sites for locating financing for your business, including loans, venture capital, and information on self-financing through an IPO (initial public offering) over the Internet:

  • MY.CAPITAL.COM. -- This site provides a searchable database of more than 4,000 venture capital firms and startups looking for business capital. In addition, investors and entrepreneurs looking for capital can post their profiles in our real-time database for interested parties to find them. This service is also free. Go to:

  • 4 ELEMENTS TO BE AWARE OF WHEN APPLYING FOR A COMMERCIAL LOAN. -- Useful checklist of things to consider when applying for business financing, from Durham Commercial Capital. Go to:

  • SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION. -- Of course, one of the best places to find out about the many available SBA loan programs is at the SBA's home page, which contains a wealth of small business loan information, and lists of Certified Development Companies in each state, at:

  • LOAN PROCESS. -- For information on how to go about obtaining SBA-guaranteed loans or other sources of startup capital, visit the web site and see their helpful guides to startups, financing, or download free business shareware programs, at:

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Last modified: December 6, 2018