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Why Is Bookkeeping Important for Small Business? 6 Reasons

bookkeeping for small business

Sunrise and Wave offer fee-based bookkeeping services, but they lack QuickBooks Live’s interactive features. Like Wave, Sunrise is free to use unless you need to add payroll and payments. It supports contact records, product records, invoices, recurring invoices, quotes, estimates, expenses, and transactions imported from financial institutions. Its features are not as fleshed-out as the best sites in this category, but it offers some unexpected advanced features, like transaction histories, multi-entity sales tax, and a cash flow page. Wave is a web-based accounting solution built for small businesses. With its bank reconciliation feature, you can link your bank accounts, PayPal accounts, and other data sources to see real-time business transactions. You can also generate reports such as accounts receivable, balance sheets, sales tax reports, and accounts payable.

bookkeeping for small business

Quickbooks – QuickBooks is an accounting software package developed and marketed by Intuit. QuickBooks products are geared mainly toward small and medium-sized businesses.

Top bookkeeping tips for small businesses

Some software targets small business accounting professionals or bookkeepers, while other programs tailor to business owners looking to develop their accounting skills. Not every business has the same bookkeeping needs as others, and their needs will likely change as the company experiences growth. Part-time bookkeepers and outsourced bookkeeping firms are a sound solution for new businesses, while full-time bookkeepers tend to benefit more established companies more.

Can I use Excel instead of Quickbooks?

If you like the freedom to do whatever you want with your financial data, choose Excel. If all you want to do is to simply (or quickly) input your financial records, Quickbooks is for you. Go with Quickbooks if you're all into accounting and additional related features like invoicing.

In this case, it may make more sense to hire an in-house accountant. Income statements, often referred to as profit and loss statements, summarize a small business’s revenues and expenses over a specific period. Companies typically prepare quarterly and annual income statements. Examples of liabilities include employee wages, income taxes, mortgage loans, and accounts payable. Best for full service add-ons

About 82% of experts say that small business owners should know how to produce and understand financial statements from their computer accounting software. It’s important that you know how to generate these statements yourself so that you can review them at least weekly. Despite your best efforts, there’ll be times when you pay for a business expense with personal funds. Remember, the Golden Rule says these business expenses should appear in your business bank account. To do so, have the company write you a check to reimburse the expense you paid with personal funds.

  • The makers of small business accounting software have worked hard to present this discipline as simply and pleasantly as possible.
  • Bookkeeping gathers all of that information in one easy-to-read system.
  • A balance sheet is a detailed report which breaks down the financial situation of your business.
  • Without accounting, your financial data is spread out and cannot form a clear picture of your business finances.
  • You should use free bookkeeping software to keep track of your business’s financial situation.

A full-time bookkeeper is typically expected to handle everyday accounts, keep account books in order, and take care of tasks that are small and large . If your company has a lot of employees, records a lot of transactions daily, or has complex financial systems, a full-time bookkeeper is a necessity rather than an option. A small business bookkeeper has several basic responsibilities. They are in charge of maintaining your financial books by keeping track of expenditures and revenue.


The right pro should be dedicated to saving you time and money on your taxes. Now that you know some of the key terms, you need to put them to use! There are three basic documents that will help you answer critical questions about your business.

bookkeeping for small business

Enters every transaction twice, as both a debit and a credit, to “balance the books” between accounts. Although more complicated, it can prevent errors in recording transactions.

Small business bookkeeping templates: should I use them?

The balances of the debit and credit columns should be equal. So keeping this account accurate and always up-to-date is vital for when you need to meet tax reporting requirements.

Ignore this and don’t be surprised if you land in hot water with the taxman. If your small business is one that has employees, then this could be the most significant cost and an account you can’t ignore when doing your books. It’s a big part of calculating the costs of goods sold which you subtract from the sales account to find your business’ gross profit. Either periodically where you make a physical count of the inventory daily, monthly, yearly or any other period that matches your business needs.

How Much Do Bookkeeping Services for Small Businesses Cost?

Make a list of “must-haves” for your accounting software along with some “nice to have” features so as you’re researching your options, you’ll be able to narrow them down more easily. You may wonder, “How much is an accountant for a small business? ” The average hourly fee for an accountant ranges from $30 to $55 but can change depending on where you live and the services requested. Sometimes the IRS insists that you use accrual accounting, like if you have an inventory to sell products.

There are many third-party app integrations available, such as Gusto, G Suite, and more. A unique feature of FreshBooks is that invoices can be highly stylized and customized for a professional look and feel. FreshBooks is a great tool for budgeting out projects, sending estimates or proposals, and collecting customer payments.

File Your Taxes With a Trusted Pro

The only difference between the two is that the Established plan has additional features like multi-currency, expense management, and project costing. All three plans offer Hubdoc, a bill and receipt capture solution. Intuit’s QuickBooks Online has been one of the most common accounting softwares used by small businesses and their bookkeeping and tax professionals. The software is cloud-based and can be accessed through a web browser or through the mobile app.

  • You should post accounts receivable regularly, which will depend on the size of your business.
  • With cash-based accounting, you’d report the expense in January, when your client paid the bill.
  • Bookkeeping is as important as the business itself because it also aids in improving your cash flow.
  • Originally the transactions would be recorded in daybooks, cashbooks, or journals and then transferred to a ledger.
  • There are many user-friendly accounting software options for small businesses, ranging from free to paid models.
  • Bookkeeping involves sorting, recording, and classifying all the financial transactions in your business.

These templates are FREE and are capable of managing basic business, small business accounting, sales tax, and financial statements. You’ll have access to balance sheets, cash flow statements, profit and loss statements, and other customizable financial reports. Finally, if you want someone else to do your bookkeeping for you, you could sign up for a cloud-based bookkeeping service like Bench. We’ll do your bookkeeping for you, prepare monthly financial statements, give you expense reports with actionable financial insights, and we’ll even file your taxes for you when the time comes. Using the accrual accounting method, you record income when you bill your customers, in the form of accounts receivable (even if they don’t pay you for a few months). Same goes for expenses, which you record when you’re billed in the form of accounts payable.

Do You Need an Accountant for a Small Business?

Although, make sure you keep your records organised all the time and not just as a one-off. Access all Xero features for 30 days, then bookkeeping for small business decide which plan best suits your business. The sooner you reconcile transactions, the sooner errors can be found and corrected.

bookkeeping for small business