This is crucial for taxes as well as personal liability protection. Regardless of the type of business you run, all business owners should write a business plan. Kelly is an SMB Editor specializing in starting and marketing new ventures. Before joining the team, she was a Content Producer at Fit Small Business where she served as an editor and strategist covering small business marketing content.
Similarly, if you just want to work part-time hours, you can do that, too. To preserve your time for expanding your business, think about how to outsource tasks to other team members. Outsourcing tasks might cost some money upfront but frees up time for running your business, working with your clients, and acquiring new ones. Have an expense log ready, and track expenses paid through personal accounts. Set up separate accounts for your business, just like you’d want your clients to do. For firms planning on holding virtual meetings with clients, you will want to invest in a Zoom Pro subscription to schedule longer meeting times with larger groups of attendees.
Step 6: Fund Your Bookkeeping Business
It holds information about you, your business, and your services. It’s also a place for you to clarify for your potential clients why they should want to work with you. You can build your website yourself, but if you have the budget invest in a web designer and copywriter to help build it for you. You’ll also need to learn some basic Search Engine Optimization (SEO) practices or hire someone to help you. Proper small business insurance is an important part of starting a bookkeeping business, but it’s also a pain for many. The process of finding and securing insurance at an affordable rate can seem overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be.
- The more you can standardize, the more streamlined your business model will be when you get clients.
- She has written legal and marketing content and communications for a wide range of law firms for more than 15 years.
- The profitability of the business also depends on its size, the number of clients, the level of competition in the market, and the pricing strategy.
- Proper small business insurance is an important part of starting a bookkeeping business, but it’s also a pain for many.
Consider the costs of having a site created (if you don’t have the skills to do it yourself), web hosting, and domain registration. Check out our guides to the best free website builders and cheap web hosting for a great place to start. New bookkeeping businesses will typically use a credit card to float working capital expenses, earn rewards, and manage employees. Check out our guide to the best business credit cards for startups to find one that fits the bill. Depending on the bookkeeping/accounting software you choose, there generally will be a payroll processing option you can turn on when you’re ready to hire employees. If you decide to go with QuickBooks, it offers a variety of payroll options from which to choose.
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The two best-known certifications are the American Institute of Professional Bookkeepers (AIPB) and the National Association of Certified Public Bookkeepers (NACPB). Both these organizations offer classes that can help prepare you to take their exams. Many community colleges also offer programs designed to help you get formally certified. Bookkeepers handle sensitive data for their clients, and an error on your part could be costly. Errors and Omissions insurance protects you and your assets if that happens. Finally, as we’ll talk about below, startup costs are manageable.
You should be a member of at least one professional bookkeeper association. The AIPB and the NACPB are the top two associations for bookkeepers. Professional associations often promote or host seminars and training. Sometimes, members can get discounted rates on these events as membership perks.
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Then it’s just a matter of tailoring your core offering around solving these pain points. If you can do that, you’re one step closer to getting clients to sign up with you. In the beginning, you should have enough time on your hands to head to several of these a week to get some word of mouth on the streets and to get to know local businesses in the area. Be prepared to hit the streets to mingle with new business owners to acquire your first few clients and build professional network. 2) To get clients, showcase a simple “how it works” process so that visitors know the steps they’ll need to follow to reach the benefits and outcomes that you have listed above. Whether you create your website yourself or hire a web developer, you’ll likely need to determine what you want on your website and factor that into your startup costs.
Bookkeeping businesses—especially if you’re the only employee—come with generally low startup costs. You will refer to it over time to help you make decisions and work toward your goals. You can also use your business plan to organize your market research, define your target market, your marketing strategy, and how your business will generate regular cash flow. While you don’t need to be an expert in every single area, any bookkeeping company must provide reliable, educated services to their clients. Errors in bookkeeping can be stressful at best and financially disastrous at worst. We’ve laid out how to start a bookkeeping business in 15 steps.
Talk to people in your network who are also bookkeepers and ask what they are charging. In doing so, you can get a good idea as to the range bookkeepers charge for services. Some popular options include QuickBooks, Xero, FreshBooks and Zoho Books, among others. You can read more about our ratings for various business accounting software here. You should be familiar with more than one software as some of your clients may have a preference in terms of the accounting software that they’d like you to use.
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The right workflow management system can save you hours and allow you to monitor your team without micromanaging it. You could use Google Sheets or a shared Excel file to manage your team and allocate tasks. If you suspect you’re getting close to expanding, start looking!
I am currently signed up with QBO Accountant and about halfway through the certification process. It doesn’t look like qbo has much so if you have any pointers on what questions I should be asking, I would love to hear about it. Once you can get your head around that, marketing and explaining your accounting and bookkeeping services to prospective clients will become far easier.