New, Free SBA Online Classes for Small Business Owners

New online business classes will be available for small businesses throughout the nation through a cosponsorship between the U.S. Small Business Administration and the Thomson Corp. (Ed2Go). Ed2Go is a national provider of online instructor-taught training classes, offering courses through more than 1,000 community colleges and other partners around the country.

Small businesses and entrepreneurs will have the opportunity to enroll in three of Ed2Go’s most popular online educational courses at no cost. The courses being offered are:

• Creating a Successful Business Plan
Work through all of the major components of a business plan and turn your business ideas into a solid plan for financing and long-term success.
Committing your idea to paper in the form of a business plan increases your chances of obtaining financing and keeps your business strategically focused.

• Customer Service Fundamental
Develop new skills in identifying and satisfying customer needs, and become an indispensable asset to any organization. This online course will help you discover and master the essentials of customer service. You’ll learn the best ways to measure customer service, apply the principles of consumer behavior to your business, and differentiate between industrial and consumer marketing.

• Creating Web Pages
Create and post your very own Web site on the Internet in this extensive, hands-on workshop. Learn about the capabilities of the World Wide Web and the fundamentals of Web design. You'll also learn critical and timely information on securing the best possible location in search engine listings, and powerful no-cost or low-cost Web marketing strategies.

Each online course will be six weeks in length, and will be facilitated by an instructor. The courses will begin June 15, with the next course start dates beginning on July 20, Aug. 17 and Sept. 21.

Online registration for each course will be available starting May 25, 2005, to the first 2,400 individuals to register. Registration for each class will be taken at the SBA’s Small Business Training Network site at www.sba.gov/training. Go to the free online courses section and click on the “Instructor-Facilitated Courses” button to complete your registration.