5 Accounting Tips to Help Small Business Owners Save Time

You’re a small business owner. You want to focus on doing what you do best – not on boring, stressful accounting…right?

As a CPA, I totally understand how frustrating accounting can be, especially for small business owners who often have limited time – and a limited budget – to devote to this necessity.

Most of you would rather focus on something…anything…else besides toiling over receipts, records and endless rows of numbers. I get it.

So today, here are 5 quick accounting tips that will help you save time in the long run – and hopefully, get you back to doing what you love, what you were meant to do (and I don’t mean accounting J)

1. Keep your accounts separate. No matter how small your business is, it makes sense to have a separate banking account. Any CPA will tell you the accounting nightmare that can happen when business and personal finances mix. It’s not difficult to open a business checking account – in the long run, you (and your CPA) will be thankful you did. Even if you’re a sole proprietorship, getting a separate bank account is an important step. Plus, it’ll be a lot easier at tax time to organize your finances.

2. Implement the RIGHT accounting software. Most everyone has heard of QuickBooks, and for good reason: their now-infamous software has made it easy for small businesses everywhere to simplify their accounting. Not surprisingly, they account for a large portion of the market share; other much smaller competitors include Xero (known for its clean, modern interface), Freshbooks (popular with freelancers), and Zoho Books (another cloud-based solution for small biz). Not sure what’s the best choice for you? Consider a free trial – many providers offer 7- to 14-day trials so you can take the platform for a test drive.

3. Keep track of your data. You already know how easy it is to get caught up in the daily grind of running your business. But if you aren’t regularly keeping track of your data, even the best accounting software won’t help. Don’t forget to reconcile your bank statements often. If you leave this undone for many months at a time, even small errors that went overlooked can add up to have a big impact on your bottom line. The result? A big hassle – and sometimes, a big expense – to correct later on.

4. Automate, automate, automate. If you find yourself performing a redundant task day after day, week after week…ask if it can be automated. There are literally hundreds of apps out there to help automate your business. Cloud-based accounting software like QuickBooks Online is a great start – but make sure you’re maximizing it to its full potential – for instance, sync your bank account(s) to avoid manually entering bank transactions. What you ultimately use will depend on your unique needs – start by creating a list of the most common tasks you do again and again. This will point you in the right direction as far as what you may be able to put on auto-pilot.

5. Stop trying to do it all. For small business owners or entrepreneurs just starting out, this can be a challenge. You want to save money every way you can to reinvest into your business and keep growing. That’s exactly why it makes sense to leave the bookkeeping to an expert – to allow you more time to get out there and do what you do best (and it probably isn’t accounting)! You’ll enjoy more peace of mind knowing that your data is in good order for tax season, and you’ll have more time to devote to working on your biggest goals…a win-win

If your bookkeeping could use some expert attention and you’re not sure where to start, no worries! That’s what I’m here for. I can help you identify the best tools and smart systems that make sense for your business – so you can focus on your most important goals instead. Contact me today to learn more.

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