Small Business Resources


Web resource Web resource  Available everywhere with your Skokie Public Library card Available with Skokie Public Library card  Available in Library only Available in Library only

Advertising and Marketing

Web resourceAd*Access

If you're looking for an advertising idea, this website allows you to browse through thousands of historical ads on hundreds of topics.

Web resourceAdvertising World

A collection of links to advertising- and marketing-related sites on the Internet, arranged in over thirty subject areas including agencies, event planning, and product placement.

Web Marketing Virtual Library

This directory of annotated links covers a wide variety of marketing topics including advertising and promotion, Internet marketing, legal issues, strategy, and more. 

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Business Plans


This site includes information about developing business and marketing plans. Resources include several examples of general and specialized plans and planning wizards to help you create your own.

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Company Information

Web resourceCompany Information from Skokie Public Library

These links to company information on the Internet have been selected by Skokie Public Library staff.

Available everywhere with your Skokie Public Library cardHoover's Online

Hoover's Online is a great resource for researchers, business professionals, and job seekers providing basic contact information for over twelve million companies, with detailed reports for more than 40,000 of them. Information is available for industries and competitors. The Hoover's database can be searched by company name or other criteria to produce lists of companies matching the specifications entered.
Skokie Public Library's guide to this database available

Web resourceSkokie Chamber of Commerce

Click the Business Directory button for a searchable list of Skokie Chamber of Commerce members.

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Web resourceSCORE

This website offers counseling services for small businesses. Resources include articles on starting and running a small business and free email counseling.

Web resourceSCORE Chicago

Find information about Chicago-area counseling sessions and workshops on a variety of small business topics at this website sponsored by SCORE (Counselors to America's Small Business). The site also offers a free Business Information Center.

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Web resourceFinancing Your Business

This website from the United States Small Business Administration contains information, requirements, and applications for SBA loans.

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Web resourceFranchise Gator

Find franchises for sale, business opportunities, and information for entrepreneurs at Franchise Gator.


This "complete franchise resource" includes a directory of franchises, articles, and a message board with information on various aspects of franchising.

Web resourceFranchiseSolutions

Search this directory to find franchise and business opportunities for sale. Other resources include general advice on starting a franchise, a newsletter, and a Franchise Resource Center.

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Web resourceCatalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA)

The online Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) provides a searchable guide to federal assistance programs (including grants and loans) available to individuals, businesses, and others.


This site assists in navigating the numerous websites administered by the various grant-making agencies of the federal government.

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Hiring and Human Resources

Web resourceelaws Advisors

The elaws Advisors help you understand your rights and responsibilities under the employment laws and regulations administered by the Department of Labor (DOL). "Advisors" assist on topics such as safety and health; wage, hour and workplace standards; and retirement and health benefit standards.

Web resourceIllinois Department of Labor

This site provides information on state labor laws including prevailing rates, licenses and permits, required posters, and more.

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Web offers a link to all federal government resources on exporting and international trade including a "getting started" section, export leads, and other valuable information.

Web resourceIllinois Trade Office

Use this website to find information about Illinois trade offices, a schedule of trade events, and links to useful trade sites.

Web resourceThomas Global Register

The Thomas Global Register is a directory of 500,000 manufacturers and distributors from twenty-six countries, classified by 10,500 products and services categories.  A free registration is required to access the directory.

Web resourceTradePort

Managed by the Bay Area Economic Forum and the Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce, TradePort is designed to be an easy-to-use tool for trade information, trade leads, and company databases.

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Legal Information

Web resourceEPA Small Business Gateway

From the United States Environmental Protection Agency, this site contains information about environmental law and regulations for small business, frequently answered questions, and links to other sites that offer small business assistance.

Web resourceFindLaw for Small Business

This detailed guide to legal resources for small businesses includes information about starting a business, business finance, employers' and employees' rights, and much more.


This site contains "everyday law for everyday people" including a small business section with advice about taxes, bookkeeping, doing business online, and much more. 

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Web resourceIllinois Department of Professional Regulations

Use this website to find information on all aspects of licenses in Illinois. Resources include a license search and application forms.

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Local Information and Guides

Web resourceCrain's Chicago Business

Crain's is a key source for business news in Chicago. Complete online access requires a subscription, but valuable information is still available for free including a Chicago Business Calendar, Who's Who in Chicago Business, and links to industry resources.

Web resourceCyberDrive Illinois: Services for Business from the Illinois Secretary of State

This website provides downloadable files for various business forms with fee schedules, a corporate name availability database, and links to other business sites.
Note: Forms require Adobe Reader.

Web resourceIllinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity

This website provides information about business incentives, grants and loans, and Illinois fact sheet, and much more.

Web resourceOakton Community College - Business Institute

Browse this website to find information about the small business services offered by Oakton Community College including customized training seminars and facility rentals.

Web resourceSkokie Chamber of Commerce

Resources on this website include a calendar of upcoming Chamber of Commerce events, a directory of Chamber members, and an overview of the community.

Web resourceSkokieNet

Among many other resources, the SkokieNet website provides links to organizations and businesses in the Skokie area.

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Patents and Inventions

Web resourceInventor Resources

From the United States Patent and Trademark Office, this site contains information on patents, copyrights, and trademarks.

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Small Business Tools

Web resourceAllBusiness

AllBusiness offers advice and tools for small businesses. Resources include downloadable business forms and advice on hundreds of topics such as human resources, sales and marketing, office management, and much more.
Note: Forms require Adobe Reader.


This "small business knowledge base" includes dozens of guides and worksheets covering topics such as starting a business, sales and marketing, personnel management, Internet business, buying a business, and much more.

Web resourceBusiness Owners' IdeaCafe

A business site in the form of a neighborhood coffee shop, Idea Cafe offers small business profiles, hotlinks, how-to articles, and news-you-can-use features.

Web resourceBusiness USA

Business USA links to all the information and services that the federal government provides for the business community.


The online counterpart to Entrepreneur magazine, this site offers articles on all aspects of running a business and is particularly strong on financial and legal matters.

Web resourceFedBizOpps

FedBizOpps replaces the Commerce Business Daily as the single source for federal government procurement opportunities that exceed $25,000. Resources include a searchable directory of business opportunities, FedBizOpp news, and links to related resources on the Web.

Web resourceGet It Done Online! from

This site provides a wide variety of business information on  topics such as start up, licensing, buying from and selling to the federal government, and much more. 


The online version of the popular entrepreneurial periodical, this website offers advice for starting and running a small business.


Developed by entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs, this website provides small business guides and information including sample business and marketing plans, a management center, and profitability tips.

Web resourceQuicken Small Business Center

Articles on running a small business are available at this site and includes the TurboTax Deduction Finder and a guide for finding optimal tax deductions for your small business.

Web resourceSmall Business Administration

The U.S. Small Business Administration website contains a detailed collection of resources for small businesses on topics such as starting, financing, and expanding a business. Other resources include a Small Business Classroom that offers a series of online courses covering small business topics.

Web resourceSmall Business Information from

An annotated guide to hundreds of online career resources including links and articles covering topics such as: accounting, finance, patents, insurance, and the top business opportunities of the year.

Web resourceState of Illinois Business Portal

A portal for small business information from the state government this site contains information on starting and running a business along with links to pertinent agencies and business forms.

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Starting a Business

Web resourceBusiness Registration Information

From the Cook County Clerk's Office, this site provides information and downloadable forms for filing an Application for Certification of your Assumed Business Name.
Note: Forms require Adobe Reader.

Web resourceStarting a Business in Illinois Handbook

From the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, this online guide offers advice on organizing and registering a business, taxes, wages, and much more. The guide is available in English and Spanish.
Note: Requires Adobe Reader.

Web resourceStarting Your Business

From the U.S. Small Business Association, this site provides startup tools, checklists, and articles covering a wide range of business startup topics.

Web resourceStartup Journal

From the Wall Street Journal, this website offers guidance on starting and running a business. Resources include a trademark search, information on franchises, business plans, and much more. A venture capital database is also available for a fee.

Web resourceStart-Up Kits from offers a set of quick, easy-to-read guides that cover a variety of popular businesses such as consulting, food service, event planning, and import/export.

Web resourceStep by Step Guide to Starting a Business in Illinois

This guide provides information on legal requirements, name registration, business structures, financing, and employees.  It also includes a feasibility checklist and specifies other resources available to those interested in starting a Illinois business.

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Web resourceBusinesses from the Illinois Department of Revenue

Forms and information regarding Illinois taxes are available at this website.

Web resourceSmall Business One Stop Resource

From the Internal Revenue Service, this website provides all types of tax information for small businesses.

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