2016-03-25 11:-03-25 11:00:43 Bookkeeping English Accounting for your small business involves a lot of different tasks. Our accounting task checklist makes it easy to understand when to do. Small Business Accounting Checklist & Infographic QuickBooks. Managing your small business finances does not have to be eat-your-spinach drudgery. The key, of course, is to create a realistic plan with a budget, record your transactions correctly, review your results regularly and always keep good records. Your comfort level with the three basic financial reports that evaluate your fiscal health is also essential: the, and.When is it time to do what? The following accounting checklist lays out a recommended timeline to take care of the accounting functions that will keep you attuned to the state of your business and streamline your tax preparation.
Enter your business name and accounting period. Input your transactions – receipts and expenses. Use the pre-set expenses categories (‘payment type’ column). If there are not enough rows, simply right click any row, and click ‘insert’ to add another one. For each month there is a balance summary row. Business Spreadsheet Excel Template For Small Business Bookkeeping Monthly Business Expense Template Excel Spreadsheet For Small Business Bookkeeping Templates For Small Business Business Spreadsheet Template Business Expenses Template Simple Business. Monthly Budget Planner Template Free Download. Sales Call Tracking Spreadsheet. Here are 8 pretty fundamental financial spreadsheets that every small business needs to have. Cashflow, Sales and Profit, Expenses, Payments and Projected Cashflow. Download the free templates now. Join our Business. This spreadsheet will help you to record and analyse payments made by your business. Download the Payments spreadsheet.
Read through for in-depth coverage of your required tasks, or skip to the end to see a handy infographic to use as a visual checklist. Daily Accounting Tasks 1. Check Cash PositionSince cash is the fuel for your business, you never want to be running near empty. Start your day by checking how much cash you have on hand. Knowing how much you expect to receive and how much you expect to pay during the upcoming week/month is important, too—but it is not gas in your tank. Weekly Accounting Tasks 2. Record TransactionsRecord each transaction (billing customers, receiving cash from customers, paying vendors, etc.) in the proper account daily or weekly, depending on volume.
Although recording transactions manually or in Excel sheets is acceptable, it is probably easier to use like QuickBooks. The benefits and control far outweigh the cost. Document and File ReceiptsKeep copies of all invoices sent, all cash receipts (cash, check and credit card deposits) and all cash payments (cash, check, credit card statements, etc.).Start a vendors file, sorted alphabetically, (Staples under “S”, Costco under “C,”etc.) for easy access. Create a payroll file sorted by payroll date and a bank statement file sorted by month. A common habit is to toss all paper receipts into a box and try to decipher them at tax time, but unless you have a small volume of transactions, it’s better to have separate files for assorted receipts kept organized as they come in. Many accounting software systems let you scan paper receipts and avoid physical files altogether. Review Unpaid Bills From VendorsEvery business should have an “unpaid vendors” folder. Keep a record of each of your vendors that includes billing dates, amounts due and payment due date.
If vendors offer discounts for early payment, you may want to take advantage of that if you have the cash available. Pay Vendors, Sign ChecksTrack your accounts payable and have funds earmarked to pay your suppliers on time to avoid any late fees and maintain favorable relationships with them. If you are able to extend payment dates to net 60 or net 90, all the better. Whether you make payments online or drop a check in the mail, keep copies of invoices sent and received using our. Prepare and Send InvoicesBe sure to include payment terms. Most are due within 30 days, noted as “Net 30” at the bottom of your invoice.
Without a due date, you will have more trouble forecasting revenue for the month. To make sure you get paid on time, always use an the contains the right details such as payment terms, itemized charges, and your payment address.Read more about the and how to. Review Projected Cash FlowManaging your cash flow is critical, especially in the first year of your business. You will need in the coming weeks/months will help you reserve enough money to pay bills, including your employees and suppliers. Plus, you can make more informed business decisions about how to spend it.All you need is a simple statement showing your current cash position, expected cash receipts during the next week/month and expected cash payments during the next week/month. To download a free customizable cash flow statement template, click. Monthly Accounting Tasks 8.
Balance Your Business CheckbookJust as you reconcile your personal checking account, you need to know that your cash business transaction entries are accurate each month and that you are working with the correct cash position. Reconciling your cash makes it easier to discover and correct any errors or omissions—either by you or by the bank—in time to correct them.
Review Past-Due (“Aged”) ReceivablesBe sure to include an “aging” column to separate “open invoices” with the number of days a bill is past due. This gives you a quick view of outstanding customer payments. The beginning of the month is a good time to send out overdue reminder statements to customers, clients and anyone else who owes you money.At the end of your fiscal year, you will be looking at this account again to determine what receivables you will need to send to collections or write off for a deduction. Analyze Inventory StatusIf you have inventory, set aside time to reorder products that sell quickly and identify others that are moving slowly and may have to be marked down or, ultimately, written off.
By checking regularly (and comparing to prior months’ numbers), it’s easier to make adjustments so you are neither short nor overloaded.
We’ve updated this article to include the most up-to-date pricing and plans for each piece of accounting software we reviewed. We also added Zoho Books to our top five recommendations thanks to its comprehensive features, helpful automation services, and easy integration with customer relationship management software. Meanwhile, we moved GoDaddy Online Bookkeeping to our runner-up position, not because the software isn’t affordable and effective but because it focuses solely on bookkeeping, not on comprehensive accounting services. Profitability is a key ingredient to your success as a small-business owner. You need a bird’s-eye view of your cash flow—where your money is coming from, how much you have at any given moment, and where it’s going. A quality accounting software can help you do just that—and a little more.
Xero: Best overallXero is our best overall choice for small businesses. This cloud-based, full-featured accounting software offers affordable plans with time-saving features, award-winning customer support, and options for unlimited users.
With all of Xero’s plans, you can send invoices, track time and expenses, sync with bank and checking accounts, manage inventory, pay bills, create reports, track purchase orders, and more. Plus, Xero integrates with, from ecommerce apps to Shopify and other point-of-sale products, so it may streamline even more steps for you.Xero also scores big for its robust reporting features, including sales, inventory, and purchase reports. It offers such as balance sheets, cash flow statements, and income statements so you can step away from throwing financial statements together yourself. And as the cherry on top, Xero software includes an unlimited number of users; many accounting products limit this number or require you to pay extra to add users. Packages and pricingXero offers three pricing plans: For $9 per month, the Early plan lets you send five invoices, five bills, and reconcile 20 bank transactions. With the Growing plan at $30 per month, you get unlimited invoices, bills, and reconciliations, plus payroll services for up to five employees.
It’s important to note that other accounting software typically don’t include payroll services in their subscription price. It’s usually offered as an add-on; for example, QuickBooks’ payroll add-on services start at $35 per month plus a $4 per employee monthly fee.
Like the Growing plan, Xero’s Established plan doesn’t limit invoices, bills, bank transactions, or users. It costs $60 per month and includes two additional features perfect for larger businesses: Xero Expenses, which helps you better track costs, and Xero Projects, which offers complete project management.
The Established plan also includes a multi-currency feature so you can quickly convert international transactions to accurate numbers for your location.Each Xero plan has a 30-day free trial period, so you can take the software for a test drive with no commitments. FreshBooks: Best for one-person start-ups and unlimited invoicingFreshBooks’ cloud-based software comes with time-saving features for small-business owners. It nabbed the top spot in our book for one-person startups and customers who need only invoicing capabilities rather than a complete accounting software solution. With any of their pricing plans, you can send an unlimited number of invoices and estimates to your customers, accept credit card payments online, track time and expenses, and automatically sync with your bank account to get expense updates.
Packages and pricingFreshBooks offers four pricing tiers to choose from. The Lite plan for $15 per month works well for small businesses with five or fewer clients.
The most popular plan, FreshBooks Plus, comes in at $25 per month and allows you to bill up to 50 clients. Extra features in this plan include setting up automatic payment reminders, charging late fees, and scheduling recurring invoices.The Premium plan is priced at $50 per month; with it, you get the same features as the Plus package and can bill up to a whopping 500 clients. And the Select plan is available for customers with over 500 clients—its custom pricing indicates it’s much pricier than other plans, but the plan includes a dedicated account manager for your team and training specific to your business. Packages and pricingThe QuickBooks Self-Employed plan, limited to one user, comes in at $10 per month and works best for freelancers and other small businesses that are sole proprietors.
You can manage invoices; accept credit and debit card payments; track miles, income, and expenses; and run financial reports.The Simple Start plan, priced at $20 per month, gives solo users the same features as the Self-Employed plan but also allows you to send estimates and track sales and sales tax. The Essentials plan for $40 per month supports multiple users and includes bill management, time tracking, and an accounts payable feature.QuickBooks Online Plus for $70 per month offers the same features as the lower-tiered plans, plus inventory tracking.
This plan is our choice for the best accounting software for small businesses that need advanced inventory management capabilities. With QuickBooks Online Plus, you receive automatic updates, low-stock alerts, and tracking for specific products. Inventory is managed in real time, so you won’t have to guess when it’s time to reorder your popular items. Wave: Best for service-based small businessesWave offers free accounting software tailored towards freelancers, business consultants, and other service-based small-business owners who don’t carry inventory.
Consider Wave if you fall in one of these professions:. Writer.
Graphic designer. Computer programmer. Web developer. Photographer.
Hair stylist. Personal trainer. Cleaning services provider. Caterer.
Home care services provider. Pet sitterUsers get unlimited invoicing for an unlimited number of vendors and customers. You can track your income and expenses, scan receipts with your iPhone or Android phone, connect your bank accounts, create financial reports, and more. You can also add payroll and tax services for a (relatively) affordable cost, which we discuss below. It’s important to note that Wave software has some crucial limitations, especially compared to.
Wave doesn’t track inventory—one of the reasons why we recommend this product for service-based small businesses. Also, you can’t track your billable hours, which is a problem if you want to link hours to specific invoices. Another hurdle that can frustrate small-business owners? Wave only offers customer support via email.
So if you’re used to getting help from a live person, Wave may not be right for you. Packages and pricingWave’s 100% free accounting software is reason enough for us to recommend this product for small businesses. There are no hidden costs, setup fees, customer support fees, or any other surprise expenses.However, it’s worth noting that Wave’s free accounting app doesn’t include payroll services. Small-business owners can add self-service payroll for $20 per month, plus $4 per employee and $4 per contractor. You can also choose payroll and tax services for $35 per month, plus the $4 monthly charge for every employee and contractor. Zoho Books: Best for automationZoho Books’ website is a little less polished than some of the others on this list, but don’t let the site design turn you off to the product.
Zoho Books covers bookkeeping, invoicing, expense tracking, tax compliance, and more. Their client portal feature lets you easily connect with every customer to share price quotes and estimates and receive payments.Best of all, though, the software easily automates all of those processes, letting you dedicate more time to your business and customers and less time to the tedious task of data entry. It automatically tracks your banking information and credit and debit card purchases, lets you set automatic customer payment reminders, creates recurring expense profiles, and automates inventory tracking too. Plus, Zoho Books is just one piece of software in the larger suite of Zoho products. Each Zoho product integrates easily with the rest, which means you can use Zoho for accounting, project managing, customer relationship management (CRM), and nearly 40 other Zoho apps tailor-made for different facets of running a business.Freelancers and companies with one to two employees probably don’t need the larger Zoho suite, but if you run a mid-sized to large business, Zoho can take several tasks off your plate at once and make each one easy to integrate and automate. Pricing and packagesZoho Books plans start at $9 per month for two users.
This Basic plan allows you five automated workflows, or activities the software will automate for you. Each plan also includes custom invoicing, recurring transactions, expense tracking, and bank reconciliation to ensure your business complies with all relevant restrictions and requirements without you having to worry about it.The Standard plan, Zoho Books’ most popular option, costs $19 per month, lets you add up to three users and 500 contacts, and enables 10 automated workflows. And the Professional plan has unlimited contacts and 10 users, though it sticks with just 10 automated workflows.
Choose the Professional plan if you need inventory, sales orders, and purchase orders software.Each new user costs an additional $2 per month. Note that if you pay for a full year up front instead of month to month, you get two months free—instead of paying $108 total for the basic plan, you’ll only pay $90. GoDaddy Online Bookkeeping: Best for bookkeepingDon’t need full-service accounting software? GoDaddy Online Bookkeeping is an easy-to-use bookkeeping software program perfect for small-business owners who don’t need more than the basics.This bare-bones, no-frills software lets you process debit and credit payments, take care of invoicing, and review basic loss and profit financial information.
Best of all, it targets small-business owners and independent contractors with little to no accounting experience; GoDaddy streamlines your financials so you can focus on the essentials without getting lost in the financial weeds. One note of caution: GoDaddy Online Bookkeeping plans support only one user. If you’re planning to grow your business and hire additional employees, GoDaddy may not be the best choice for you.Plus, GoDaddy Online doesn’t use double-entry bookkeeping, so if you manage a growing business that needs to create comprehensive financial statements and reports, you may want to consider a more advanced accounting solution, such as QuickBooks.
(On the other hand, if double-entry bookkeeping doesn’t mean much to you, GoDaddy is the best choice for your business.). Pricing and packagesAnother reason to choose GoDaddy Bookkeeping? It’s simple and cheap. The Get Paid plan starts at $4.99 per month and manages credit and debit payments. You can also create and send invoices automatically, track your mileage, and run a current year-end business report—not bad for just under $5 a month.If you need a bit more bookkeeping help, try the Essentials plan at $7.99 per month or the Premium plan for $14.99. Both of these plans simplify your end-of-year tax filing process and automatically import sales data from sites like Amazon, plus data from your credit card and bank account.
The Premium plan also takes care of recurring invoicing—automatically bill your regular customers without lifting a finger. More software options to consider Sage Business Cloud AccountingSage Business Cloud Accounting software lets you create invoices, track customer billing and amounts owed, and more. It syncs with your bank account and provides real-time financial data. You can choose from six plans tailored to small, medium-sized, and large businesses starting at $10 a month. Shoeboxedisn’t a full-service accounting software, but it can help you with a messy part of managing your small-business finances: receipts. Shoeboxed is a “digital document archive service” that helps remove the hassle and clutter of tracking and organizing receipts and other paper documents.
You have three ways to scan your receipts:. Mail receipts to Shoeboxed using the special “magic envelope.”. Snap a photo of receipts using the mobile app. Email receipts to a unique Shoeboxed address.Shoeboxed technology scans the receipts, turns them into digital files, and automatically files them for easy access.
Pricing starts at $29 per month, and Shoeboxed syncs with many of the top accounting software we recommended here, including QuickBooks, Wave, and Xero. AccountEdge ProConsider AccountEdge Pro if you’re looking for a subscription-free small-business accounting solution. This full-service, double-entry accounting software includes invoices, payments, purchases, payroll, and inventory. AccountEdge Pro requires a one-time fee only, with the basic software priced at $149, and you start with a 30-day trial.
Express AccountsWith by NCH Software, you can perform basic accounting tasks such as invoicing and tracking bills and payments. The software works best for Macs and is a little outdated; the NCH website looks trapped in the early ’00s.
Still, a bare-bones version of Express Accounts Accounting Software is available for free if your business has fewer than five employees, which makes it worth looking into if you need cost-effective accounting solutions. OneUpaccounting software is used for invoicing, creating purchase orders, and tracking inventory. However, it’s not a good choice for small businesses that need payroll capabilities. Furthermore, if you’re a Mac user, you’re out of luck.
Like Zoho, OneUp offers customer relationship management (CRM) features; it also helps automate inventory for year-end accounts. Pricing for one user starts at $9.
Still confused by financing and accounting software? To clear things up, we’ve answered a few of the most commonly asked questions about accounting software. Do I really need financial reporting for my small business?Some small-business owners have silent partners and stakeholders to answer to. Because they give investors a snapshot of where their money is going and how a business is doing financially. If this describes your situation, you need accounting software that creates balance sheets, profit and loss statements, cash flow statements, and other documents to. Which small businesses should use accounting software?All small and medium-sized businesses can benefit from accounting software, no matter how many employees there are. Accounting software can easily save you hours and hours of time with automated reporting, expense tracking, and invoicing—not to mention all the other useful features.
And don’t put off the investment—small to midsize businesses benefit from having business profit, revenue, and expenses in line sooner rather than later. Accounting software can save you a lot of time and headache as your company grows. When should I consider outsourcing or hiring a specialized employee for accounting services?With how capable accounting software is, will you ever have to rely on a professional accountant? Believe it or not, accounting software can only do so much. Your business could outgrow all those handy features and services.When you no longer have time to look over automated reports and keep an eye on the finances, it’s time to or in-house accountant.
Accountants can oversee the finances and handle reports, invoicing, and other financial tasks. And if you need to make a costly decision, they can tell you what you have the budget for. The takeawayThe right accounting software for small business can make your life easier.
It can save you time and money, and it’s a lot more efficient than manual bookkeeping and spreadsheets. Accounting tools can free up your time and let you focus on more important things, like interacting with customers and growing your business.Interested in learning more about how to make accounting software work for you?
See our piece on for more help.At Business.org, our research is meant to offer general product and service recommendations. We don’t guarantee that our suggestions will work best for each individual or business, so consider your unique needs when choosing products and services.Sources:1. InsuranceQuotes, “”2. FreshBooks, “”4.
Free Home Bookkeeping Spreadsheet