small businesses

Taber Andrew Bain

Wells Fargo Accused Of Overcharging Small Businesses

The scandals and accusations continue to mount for Wells Fargo. This time, the banking giant is being accused of overcharging small businesses to process credit card transactions. [More]

Greg McMullen

Visa Will Give 50 Restaurants $10K Each To Upgrade Payment Tech If They Ban Cash

Credit card network Visa has an interesting proposal for small food businesses across the country. It will give as many as 50 of them $10,000 each to upgrade their systems, especially to accept contactless mobile payments. The catch is that they have to agree not to accept cash anymore. [More]


Teen Has Sold $1M Worth Of Custom Socks Even Before Graduating High School

In the wise words of the late musician Aaliyah, when it comes to launching a successful apparel business, “age ain’t nothin’ but a number.” Just ask the teenager who has already sold $1 million worth of his custom-designed socks — before he’s even finished high school or moved out of his parents’ home. [More]

Mike Mozart

New Focus On Small Businesses At Staples Means Co-Working Spaces, K-Cups

What is Staples? The company’s leaders probably wouldn’t be pleased to hear you say, “The place where I go for printer cartridges when I can’t wait for an online order,” but plans to change consumer perceptions by offering things small and medium businesses need, from office space to coffee pods. [More]

(Ciaran McGuiggan)

Supermarket Chain Sues Credit Card Companies Over Costly Chip Card Delay

Nearly five months ago, new credit card rules went into effect making retailers liable for fraudulent purchases if they haven’t upgraded their checkout technology to accept more secure, but far from perfect, chip-enabled cards. While some retailers have installed the card readers, many haven’t turned them on. But according to a new class-action seeking lawsuit, it’s not their fault.  [More]

(Gumby Liberation Organization)

Regulators Stop Alleged Office Supply Scam That Targeted Charitable Organizations, Small Businesses

We’ve said it a thousand times: scammers are the worst, and those that take advantage of organizations trying to do good in the world are the lowest of the low. Such was allegedly the case for Liberty Supply Co., which federal regulators have accused of running an office supply scam that targeted charitable organizations and small businesses.  [More]

Uber Lauches UberRUSH Courier Service In Chicago, San Francisco

Uber Lauches UberRUSH Courier Service In Chicago, San Francisco

After spending nearly a year-and-a-half testing a courier service that provides customers with on-demand orders from local businesses in New York, Uber has officially expanded UberRUSH to two additional cities.  [More]

(Don Hankins)

Your Next Fraudulent E-Mail May Come From Your Boss

If I received an urgent e-mail from Boss Meg telling me to send a $9,000 wire transfer to Consumerist’s fedora vendor, I would know that it was some kind of scam. Paying our bills isn’t part of my job, so clearly that isn’t an e-mail that I would receive. What if that were my job, though? Companies have reported losing an average of $55,000 to a scam exactly like this, wiring money to mysterious entities who forge e-mails from the boss. [More]

Should Gas Station Pay For Damage From Pumping Water Into Customer’s Car?

Should Gas Station Pay For Damage From Pumping Water Into Customer’s Car?

Do you check to make sure that you’re really pumping gasoline into your car, and not some other substance? Most likely not. More than a dozen motorists in New Jersey bought gas that turned out to be water. This did some damage to the fuel systems of their cars. Who is responsible for paying for repairs? The station owner says that he shouldn’t have to pay one victim’s high repair costs. She disagrees. [More]

Ask Tax Dad: Micro-Business, Rental Home, Deadbeat Ex, And Government Shutdown

Ask Tax Dad: Micro-Business, Rental Home, Deadbeat Ex, And Government Shutdown

Historically, our staff Certified Tax Cat has handled readers’ questions about taxes, but he’s taking a leave of absence to campaign for the legalization of medical catnip. Filling in for him is Laura’s dad, a retired accountant and real live independent tax preparer. Exclusively on Consumerist, Tax Dad answers your questions. [More]


Lottery Winner Grabs Burger In Canadian Midwest, Leaves $10,000 Tip

Passing through Saskatchewan, a man from British Columbia, Canada happened to stop in a little restaurant to grab a burger. The visitor wrote a $10,000 check and told the restaurant owner to take his bill out of that and keep the rest. Was it some kind of scam? No, just a very generous lottery winner. [More]


Coffee Shop Owner: Quit Asking Me To Offer Suspended Coffees Already

Last week, we explained why we think that the “suspended coffee” movement that allegedly began in Naples, spread all over Bulgaria, and exploded on Facebook isn’t such a hot idea. But don’t just take it from us: the owner of an independent London coffee shop weighed in on the movement. Her take: it’s insulting that people think independent coffee shops don’t already help people who look like they could use a warm cup of coffee, and you should support your local indie shop. Well, that second part was predictable. [More]


B2B Telemarketer Rage: A Perspective From The Other End Of The Phone Line

Usually, the people who write to us are besieged with calls from telemarketers or companies they’ve done business with, and want us to help make it stop. Brett is on the other side of the phone line. He’s not the traditional telemarketer you might think of, calling ordinary citizens during dinner: his company is just business-to-business, and he was doing some cold calling to drum up business. The person who answered the phone was anything but businesslike. [More]

(Alan Cleaver)

The Slightly Ridiculous Multiple License Pricing Of QuickBooks

When Brett’s dad bought a new computer with a shinier operating system, he had to purchase a new version of the accounting software Quickbooks for use on more than one computer. No big deal: Quickbooks comes with multiple licenses so users can install it on more than one computer after buying only one copy. There was no mention of needing multiple licenses for multiple computers in the sales documentation. That’s when Brett learned that you can’t make purchases based on how a product’s specifications used to be. A second license actually costs more than a single copy of Quickbooks. [More]

PayPal Leaves Small Business Out $500 And A Snake

PayPal Leaves Small Business Out $500 And A Snake

Shawn runs a small reptile business, selling habitats, supplies, and animals. A customer’s purchase of a $500 snake went smoothly, with payment via PayPal and a critter off to a happy new home. Then the buyer reported the transaction to PayPal as fraudulent. They ruled in the buyer’s favor after an “investigation” that didn’t include talking to Shawn, and took back the $500. Voil√† – free snake. [More]

Chicago Restaurant Owes $118K In Overdraft Fees, May Have To Close

Chicago Restaurant Owes $118K In Overdraft Fees, May Have To Close

If you’ve felt the burn of a $35 overdraft charge, just be thankful you’re not Chicago’s Heartland Cafe, which has had to shell out $118,000 in cascading overdraft charges. [More]

Treasury Dept. To Give States $1.5 Billion To Help Small Businesses

Treasury Dept. To Give States $1.5 Billion To Help Small Businesses

Less than two weeks after the passing of the $30 billion small business lending bill, the Treasury Department has announced an additional $1.5 billion it will distribute to the states with the intent of seeing ten times that dollar amount ultimately injected into the economy. [More]