Running your own small business can be both incredibly challenging and incredibly rewarding. Often you have to wear a variety of different hats from the CEO to Marketing Director to Accountant.
However, one thing that is incredibly important for any small business to succeed is correct accounting. If you don’t stay on top of your marketing expenses, your debt, and your receivables, your business will inevitably run into trouble. Accounting is one of the necessary chores of all entrepreneurs, but it will help you manage your operations while preventing the IRS from wanting to audit you. To keep your business moving towards profits and away from the tangled mess of a receipt box, you need to get your small business accounting in order with these four tips.
Keep Your Business and Your Personal Accounts Separate
A major mistake often happens to new business owners when they simply combine their business and personal accounts. Instead, it is important to have a dedicated business account. This should include a credit card, checking account, and even a saving account. This will save you time and money when you need to tally your deductibles. It can be difficult getting this organized right when you are beginning, but it will save loads of time and headaches at the end of the year.
Track All of Your Expenses
Another key to keeping track of your small business accounts is to make sure you are diligently tracking every expense. When you go through your expenses, it is wise to organize them by categorizing each expense and labeling it. This will help you keep track of your cash flow while preventing you from missing any possible write-offs for your taxes. When you use your business credit card for your purchases, it will be easier to keep track of expenses. This will prevent you from storing all of your receipts in a shoe box. It will also help you earn cash back or rewards when you pay for all of the different items your business needs. If you need to pay in cash, make sure you keep a digital file of your receipts. It can also be incredibly helpful to use accounting software to keep track of your money.
Make Your Self Audit Monthly
Performing a self-audit can help you keep an eye on your financial health as well as how well your clerical system is working. Audits can be as simple as double checking your books each month to find a delinquent or late account that you still need to collect on to the more complex needs of bigger businesses. When you keep track of your finances monthly, you can evaluate the seasonality of your business as well as your expected business trajectory and growth. It is important to keep track of the numbers both monthly and quarterly to keep an eye on any potential areas for improvement.
Use an Accounting Software Program
Using a business program like QuickBooks allows you to keep track of your expenses easily. Programs like that are inexpensive and easy to set up. Once it is set up correctly, it is incredibly easy to maintain and will help you keep track of your books on a daily basis.