This year’s statewide conference for the Ohio SBDC’s covered a wide variety of topics.  Cyber security was a major topic, leadership and several business related topics were discussed over two days. Below are some of the topics and their related resources for your review.

Eric Spellman – A great video blog (vblog) source for all things internet marketing and design.  Entertaining and informative content useful as a counselor, designer or client.  And, he will come to your center as a speaker if you like!

Web Design Platforms – Many tools exist to build websites these days. SBDC clients are becoming increasingly familiar with the varied platforms due to the low cost of entry and high quality content that can be produced. Here are just a few design tools that were discussed in the Technology Trends class:

  • WordPress – For as little as $200 per year a client can operate a fully ecommerce capable website using the Woocommerce plug-in.  This is a highly scalable, robust design platform and is currently the most widely used and supported web design tool on the internet today.
  • Wix – A low cost, cloud based design platform with limited ecommerce capabilities at additional cost.
  • Square Space – Very robust, more expensive but very capable and easy to use.  This is a great solution for clients who want a tool that works for focused applications but don’t want to seek outside (non Square Space) add-ons.

Payment Processing – Heartland Merchant Services (Pam Splawinski) provided information on point of sale solutions and the new guidelines for EMV card processing and Near Field Communications as they apply to retailers.

Power of the Crowd – Crowdfunding and crowdsourcing were topics of interest as well.  Three websites shared by attendees included,, and  Each of these sites offer low cost solutions to clients needing services from marketing to accounting to web-design.

About the author


Over 15 years experience in the SBDC. eCommerce, marketing and strategic planning specialist with entrepreneurial background in web technologies.

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