News Roundup for Small Businesses: Issue 5, March 3rd

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The reality of cash flow management for small business owners


News Roundup for SMBs is a new series we’re starting this year, with a new issue coming out every week. We’re putting together news regarding Finance, Economy and Small Business Opportunities, so you can spend less time reading up on the news and more time focusing on growing your business.


Square Capital On Pace to Overtake OnDeck in Small Business Lending

OnDeck is retaining their first spot in deBanked’s small business funder rankings, after last year their annual loan origination volume has reached $2.5 billion. Yet strongly rising in the ranks is Square Capital, the small business lending division from Square. In 5 years, they’ve gone from a footnote to growing 16x and closing the gap in loan volume. If the trend continues, Square is expected to exceed OnDeck in loan origination volume by next year.


E-Commerce Success Is Killing The Economics Of Cheap Home Delivery

While millions of e-commerce shipments are happening daily, the economics of making these deliveries daily to millions of private households are becoming unsustainable. Shipping costs are increasing, while the ability to follow through with pricing isn’t necessarily following. In fact, pricing is kept low by giant e-commerce companies, the business model is changing and the need to integrate technology in last mile deliveries are all contributing to the change of home delivery as we know it.


Target takes exclusive approach to expanding online store to more sellers

Target is opening up its website to third-party sellers with cautious steps and by invitation only. Target’s marketing and digital boss shared that they’re being selective of who gets invited into the platform and the new businesses are chosen based on ‘what people are searching for’. If the website continues its opening of doors for third-party sellers, small businesses may have another platform, besides Amazon or eBay, where they will be able to sell their products.


Robots at Work: Meet the non-engineer who automated his small business


Just how accessible is automation for small business owners? It looks like the answer is very much so. Curtis Lucas, the owner of Alaska Professional Janitorial (APJ), stands out as an example after he decided - and succeeded - to design and build a robot that could help do the cleaning. Motivated by his difficulties in hiring people for his company, Lucas, put together all the parts and did the most of the coding himself. He did hire someone to improve on his work and develop the app to run the robot).


New Kabbage Study Shows The Harsh Reality Of Cash Flow Management On Owners

Kabbage recently surveyed 500 entrepreneurs, to discover more on their use of capital, their mindset and all around company health. The results are eye-opening: while most entrepreneurs have a positive start due to their own investment or support received from friends and family, many (91% of them) end up spending as much as 20 hours per week on cash flow management or withholding their salary for consecutive months to support the company. It goes to show just how hard it is for a small business to build the necessary reserves for a positive cash flow.

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