WHAT WE LEARNED FROM LOCAL ALLIES
WASHINGTON – Today, the Small Business Digital Alliance (SBDA), a co-sponsorship between the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and Business Forward, Inc., highlights digital opportunities and learnings from our small business organizations across the country. The SBDA has reached more than 16 million small businesses and entrepreneurs through national programming, regional events, and digital content, thanks to our growing cohort of Local Allies, which include regional and minority chambers, non-profits, incubators and accelerators, trade associations, business roundtable organizations, resource centers, community organizations, small business coaches, and more – all dedicated to advancing American entrepreneurship. Read on to hear the small business insights and opportunities our Local Allies have shared with us this past year.
Small businesses reap rewards when they take advantage of digital technology. According to a study done by Deloitte, 85% of all SMBs report that digital tools have helped their business, including increased customer growth and better financial performance.
Steven Clift, CEO, GoodCarts: "Consumers are asking how to better shop their values online. Local small businesses have an opportunity to be part of that mix, but have to be digitally proactive."
Jessy Fontes, Owner, Mariposa Discount Store, and Chairman of the Board, Nogales-Santa Cruz County Chamber of Commerce: "When small businesses succeed, they generate more revenue, which contributes to our economies while also providing new job opportunities for residents. This revenue generated by local businesses can create a multiplier effect that helps grow local economies."
Digital tools and trainings continue to help new business owners as they overcome the challenges that come with starting a business, such as sustaining growth, finding talent, and managing funds. Local Allies understand how these challenges impact their communities at the ground level, and are better able to support their community thanks to the SBDA and its Digital Tool Library.
Andrea Cid, CEO, Miami Growth Machine: “The growth in women-led businesses, particularly during and post-pandemic, does not surprise me. Over 80% of my clients are women. A combination of tech-enabled ecommerce growth, layoffs, and the need for flexibility has given women entrepreneurs the opportunity to launch new CPG businesses.”
Sandra Font, Senior Director of the Women’s Business Center, Access to Capital for Entrepreneurs, Inc. (ACE): “ACE Women’s Business Center is grateful for the partnership with the Small Business Digital Alliance. Our business owners continue to struggle to access capital, and the interest rate increases put a strain on their businesses. Another big challenge that they are currently facing is labor shortages and the struggle to retain employees. Inflation and supply chain issues are other obstacles making small businesses slow down from scaling.”
Paul Quirk, VP of Customer Success, Caspio: "Today, small businesses need easy-to-use digital tools in order to adapt and compete in an ever-changing market. Caspio’s low-code platform helps companies of all sizes build custom business applications 20 times faster than traditional software development methods. We’re excited to work with the SBDA and empower SMBs with the technology they need to grow and thrive in today’s fast-paced business environment."
Jeff Wasden, President & CEO, State Business Executives: “The Small Business Digital Alliance (SBDA) has been a wonderful resource and successful tool for small business owners who are looking to compete, grow, expand, and innovate in the digital economy. By utilizing the digital resources provided by some of America’s largest and most respected companies, small businesses are more productive and efficient while receiving valuable training to help them engage digitally and enter the e-commerce market. All of the numerous benefits are provided at no charge to the small business owner – a phenomenal asset when there is a scarcity of resources to pay for products and training. Our organization represents tens of thousands of SMBs and going digital, increasing their online presence, and using the digital tools and resources is a top priority, especially in the last few years. We know that the businesses who are taking advantage of the tools and resources from SBDA are gaining an upper hand and ultimately will be more successful in their business.”
Local Allies have also seen how collaborating with other small business ecosystem partners, like SBDA National Members, benefit their local businesses. These collaborations provide new insights and learnings to small businesses across the country.
Jimmy Newson, Founder & CEO, Moving Forward Small Business: “I recently was asked to be a guest speaker at a Grow with Google event hosted by Sandra Garcia, the Grow with Google NY Digital Coach. It was great having so many amazing small businesses learn about money management skills to help boost their small business. Some key takeaways were understanding how cash flow works and the importance of your balance sheet and profit and loss statement. There was also a lot of great storytelling, which helped bring the lessons to life.”
Brad Garsten, Founder, PrivacyCare.io: “The SBDA family of local allies has been supportive and open to sharing and collaborating. One of the national trends we see at PrivacyCare.io is that a small number of SMBs are aware of new consumer data privacy laws. While seeking validation from another market, I met Jimmy Newson, CEO/Founder of Moving Forward Small Business, in the City of New York. Together we discovered a more significant effect beyond the law; the reputational risk and brand damage to unaware SMBs. We discussed ways to create a blog article or webinar around helping small businesses have 360-degree strategies to protect themselves and their customers online. I will continue to work with Local Allies like Moving Forward Small Business on this project and others, and look forward to sharing our collaboration with our networks.”
Across the country, SBDA Local Allies leverage the Alliance’s 300+ free trainings and tools as they provide on-the-ground expertise to their small business communities. If your organization would like to become a Local Ally of the SBDA, sign up here: https://www.smallbusinessdigitalalliance.com/register-allies/
Co-sponsorship Authorization No: 22-5-C: The SBA’s participation in this cosponsored activity is not an endorsement of the views, opinions, products, or services of any cosponsor or other person or entity. All SBA programs and services are extended to the public on a nondiscriminatory basis.
This website is provided as a public service under co-sponsorship Authorization #22-5-C. It is not an official U.S. government website, and it may contain links to non-U.S. government information. The inclusion of such links does not constitute or imply an endorsement by the SBA. The SBA is not responsible for the content, accuracy, relevance, timeliness, or completeness of linked information.
The Small Business Digital Alliance (SBDA) is a joint co-sponsorship agreement between the SBA and Business Forward, Inc. that brings together major players, influencers, and companies in the tech, e-commerce, benefits, and other industries to help small businesses connect with digital tools and reach new customers through expanded opportunities through trainings, tools, and expansion of their digital networks – free of charge. To learn more, visit www.smallbusinessdigitalalliance.com.
ABOUT BUSINESS FORWARD
Business Forward has helped more than 270,000 local business leaders make the “business case” for climate action, affordable healthcare, immigration reform, diversity and inclusion, sensible tax laws, criminal justice reform, infrastructure investment, new trade deals, and other pro-growth reforms. Our leaders brief policymakers, work with local media, publish op-eds, submit testimony, and advocate online. We also promote their recommendations through issue briefs, survey reports, training manuals, podcasts, and social media. More than 800 mayors, governors, members of Congress, and senior Administration officials have participated in our briefings, including three presidents. Learn more at www.businessforward.org.
ABOUT THE U.S. SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION
The U.S. Small Business Administration helps power the American dream of business ownership. As the only go-to resource and voice for small businesses backed by the strength of the federal government, the SBA empowers entrepreneurs and small business owners with the resources and support they need to start, grow, expand their businesses, or recover from a declared disaster. It delivers services through an extensive network of SBA field offices and partnerships with public and private organizations. To learn more, visit www.sba.gov.