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Win up to $25,000 in specialized products and expert advice your business needs to make more happen, no matter what it is you happen to do.

What you can win:
Grand Prize (1): $25,000
1st Place (1): $15,000
2nd Place (1): $10,000
Runners-up (7): $5,000

Prize will go towards all of the products you need at Staples.

Grand prize, 1st place, and 2nd place winners will get customized advice and insight from top business experts in their field.

The Merchants Fund (TMF) is committed to providing for the economic needs of the merchant community with modest grants. Merchants must be located in Philadelphia for a minimum of three years.

Grants of between $1,000 and $20,000 are available to current merchants in several forms, including Business Loan matches from accredited government programs and banks. Loan matches may not be used to pay off debts or existing loans or a loan to be obtained. We recommend starting the loan application simultaneously to the application to TMF.

Source: SmallBizTrends.com, 7/17/13

So how do consumers buy online?

From showrooming worries to mcommerce trends, small retailers and e-tailers have a lot of issues to keep up with these days. A new study from Shopzilla that polled Internet users about their online shopping habits has some useful insights. Below is some of what they found.

What Inspires Purchasing?

Share your small business story to compete for a share of $50,000 in grants from FedEx.

Sign up for the FedEx Small Business Grant Contest, and tell us what separates your business from the rest. After your entry is accepted, you can share your unique story and profile with your Facebook friends and Twitter followers to encourage them to vote for you and get your small business closer to a big grant:

• Grand prize grant of $25,000

Source: SmallBizTrends.com, 7/23/13

When starting your own company, no one is short on advice. Sometimes it’s difficult to sort through all those opinions to focus on what really matters — and your success occasionally depends on knowing which advice to tune out, too.

We asked members of the Young Entrepreneur Council, an invite-only organization comprised of successful young startup founders, what piece of advice they found to be most helpful (even if they didn’t know it at the time).

Source: AliDavies.com

If you want to achieve your goals, it is important to be aware of the things that might get in your way.

Or maybe you know you are not achieving your goals but aren’t sure why.

Here are some common reasons people don’t achieve their goals.

You might want to check that you aren’t falling into any of these traps.

8 Reasons You Are Not Achieving Your Goals

1. You haven’t set any!

Sometimes a small micro-grant can make a huge difference to an artist–just $200-$1000 can make completing the next significant career step in an artist’s life possible.

The pilot program of the Small But Mighty Arts Grant is looking to do just that by awarding 3-5 Philadelphia-based artists with up to $500 each to continue and complete a creative project as well as put their work out into the community.

The National Association for the Self-Employed (NASE) knows that microbusiness owners can always use a little money to get a leg up. That's why they created their grant program to help members take their businesses to the next level.

About Small Business Grants from the NASE:

Worth up to $5,000 each, NASE Members can apply for a grant useful for financing a particular small business need. Past recipients used their grant for computers, farm equipment, to hire part-time help, marketing materials and more. What does your business need? 

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