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March 19, 2019

How to get started with Small Business Startups Accounting

business finance accountingMany people are already aware of the fact that accounting plays a vital role in any startup. You need to be very careful when dealing with accounting affairs as this can affect your business to a great deal. Many just pay attention to finding their website and getting a brand name but they pay very little attention to the numbers which actually matter in order to survive in this big market. If you will not pay attention to the finances and important accounting matters then you will be at a loss without even realizing. Small Business Administration has helped people by providing a list of reasons which will eventually result in their losses of several businesses out there.

Hiring small business accountants

Many people and other business owners think that they can handle the accounting by themselves. This option is a very great option if one holds an accounting degree or a solid background in this finance field. Otherwise, it will be suggested to get small business accountants for this cause. Before planning out your business strategies just question yourself whether you will be needing a bookkeeper or not.

Bookkeeper’s job

If you are wondering what is the task of bookkeeper and how one can affect your business then they are really vital in any startup situation. Why? Because they will make a complete sense out of complicated situations and help your startup to grow eventually into a great empire. If you are wondering that what they actually do when they are not only responsible for handling the financial transactions per table also keep a record of all the systems and other statements.

Accountant’s job

You must also get the help of an accountant as an accountant will provide you with a layout for the business. You can also choose to hire additional employees for a great impact on your overall structure. Many people go for part-timer because they are a great source of help when they have a limited budget. If you have a very small company then the cost of hiring a full-timer will be really expensive and it can cost you your whole budget so that is why many prefer freelancers. This is a great way of actually hiring people only when they are needed rather than paying them for full time.

Accounting methods

Many people are not yet aware that there are only two genuine methods for accounting which is cash accounting and other is accrual accounting. As far as choosing between the two is concerned and small businesses prefer to get accrual accounting rather than the cash one. You must get the help of any professional in the finance field to see the requirement of a business and whether you should go for cash method or the accrual one. If you are wondering that what is accrual method then it basically shows you a real-time account of the finances and with the help of all the packages it gives a true picture.

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March 8, 2019

Yellowstone Capital LLC Financing Pro Recommends 5 Ways Small Businesses Can Maximize Their Resources By Hiring Out

small business successIn today’s digital age and globalized world, long gone is the 9-5 business day that used to be standard for most workers. While today’s fluid work environment offers an incredible amount of flexibility and creative options for both employers and employees, at the same time, there is increased urgency, pressure and expectations that work get work done and delivered fast, at the highest quality and at the lowest cost.

Companies of all sizes need to be able to provide their clients with what they want and need quickly – because if not, someone else will. While large companies with deep resources may have on staff enough employees of a varied nature to satisfy client demands for quality, speed and cost, it is a bit trickier for smaller businesses with more limited resources.

Imagine a situation in which a client approaches your business with a lucrative project that requires a graphic designer who specifically has expertise in animation. Although this project is a great opportunity for the business, it probably doesn’t make sense to hire another graphic designer with these specific skills (when you already have a great designer on your team) and to invest in training and paying benefits when this is a one time project. At the same time, though, the small business owner does not want to turn down this opportunity.

What is a small business owner to do?

One practical and cost effective solution is to hire a freelancer or independent contractor. Although this may deviate from the way the small business is used to operating, there are some major benefits to be gained by hiring out.

Save Money

It is well known that oftentimes full time employees are not actually working all of those hours they are being paid for. On the other hand, freelancers only charge you for the hours they work so a business may end up spending less money for the same work, even when taking into consideration a higher hourly rate. Plus, there are great apps out there to help keep track of freelancers’ hours to guarantee that an hour worked is an hour paid. Some to check out include Toggl, RescueTime, Harvest, Hubstaff, Time Doctor and Timely.

Save On Time

If a freelancer accepts a job chances are he or she is highly motivated to get the project done on time and done well. Since most freelancers’ business model relies on repeat customers, freelancers can be counted on to get the job done promptly, maybe even before deadline.

Save On (Office) Space

Hiring a freelancer means you don’t need to find space for another person to sit in your already cramped office. Not needing to find a larger workspace means business owners will save money on rent. The freelancer will work from home, from the coffee shop, from another country – it doesn’t matter as long as the job gets completed.

Get More Experience

Experienced freelancers have done their time working with a variety of different companies and many come well equipped with a toolbox of eclectic skills that will benefit your company and impress your client.

Gain Access to Global Candidates

Hiring a freelancer allows you to transcend borders and timezones. They can work while you are sleeping and even on weekends, helping to speed up a project or free up time for salaried employees to work on other priorities during the workday.

Overall, hiring a freelancer can give your small business the advantages of motivation and fresh skills, while saving your business valuable resources – time and money being two critical resources that all small businesses owners are seeking to maximize.

One word of caution, however. Both employers and workers need to be clear on who, according to the law, is classified as a freelancer. Sometimes, there are situations in which employers may classify employees as independent contractors when in fact the law sees them as employees. If this is the case, these workers may be eligible to make claims for employee rights and benefits. To prevent any misunderstanding or legal issues down the line, it is best for a worker and employer to execute a written contract that defines the relationship prior to beginning any work.

Lee Madison writes about financial topics relevant to small business owners. She is director of content at Yellowstone Capital LLC.

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February 20, 2019

How to promote your consulting business with webinars

business establishmentLeveraging the power of the internet and technology is a great way to promote your business. After all, what could be an easier, cheaper way to gain access to an enormous chunk of the population? According to a report1 on internet usage and population statistics- June 30, 2018, internet penetration in North America was 95%. A growth of 219% was recorded in internet users over the period 2000- 2018. Clearly, using internet tools as a means to spread the word about you is sure to be an effective move. In fact, this might be the most effective tool you could use because the audience of today searches for vendors/ service providers/ businesses online before identifying one to go with.

That is not all, and most customers also research a service provider or business online to satisfy themselves about their credentials before they decide to go with them. This is where a webinar, in particular, plays a key role in helping you build your brand in the right way. As a consultant, you want to demonstrate to prospective clients that you are an expert in your chosen field and the best way to do this is by showcasing your knowledge on a platform that is easily accessible. A webinar is the perfect choice for achieving this objective if you use it in the right way.

How to make sure your webinar is an effective brand builder

• Address a challenge: Identify a common problem that prospective clients face in your niche and address it through your webinar. Remember that you are not here to give a comprehensive solution through this medium- just give enough information that could be helpful to the client, perhaps give them an idea of what could be a solution. However, your main agenda is to showcase that you know how to deal with the problem so that the prospective clients who watch the webinar think of you when they are looking for someone to help them with the problem. Think of your webinar as a teaser for your services.

• Maintain a professional stance: While it is necessary to appear approachable and friendly in your webinar, you also need to seem like a competent professional who is capable of delivering results. Maintaining complete professionalism during your webinar is very crucial, and that means you pay attention to your clothing, your body language, your gestures, the words you use, etc. When shooting your webinar imagine that you are talking face to face with a very valued client.

• Repeat the webinar: There is no guarantee that all the potential targets for your webinar are free when you air it and that means many might have missed it. Repeating the webinar on a regular basis is a great way to maximize audience coverage with this promotional tool. Remember to spread the word about the webinar airing time/ date well in advance every time you plan to repeat it so that those who are interested do accommodate it into their schedule.

• Collect the right data: Your webinar audience is clearly interested in your area of expertise. Invest efforts in collecting data like email ids or social media account details of each viewer so that you can later make them part of your email list or add them to your SNS groups so that you can continuously engage with them. Your webinar can bring you a primed group of prospective clients- don’t fail to leverage this asset.

Planning out your brand building strategies is one of the crucial steps you must take right when you set up your business, along with taking out the right kind of insurance to cover all risks, hiring the right employees, establishing a foolproof feedback system, etc. With the right panning in the initial stages, you have laid a solid foundation for success with your consultancy business.

Conclusion: Brand building becomes easy when you use internet tools like webinars to spread the word about yourself and your brand. You can achieve impressive results if you use these tools in the right way to communicate your message effectively.

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January 14, 2019

5 Finance Management Tips for New Entrepreneurs

manage your moneyThe reason most entrepreneurs set up in business is, at least partly, to make money so financial management is a crucial skill which all new business owners or would-be entrepreneurs need to learn if they want to be successful.

However, managing finances isn’t always a skill which comes naturally to many. Entrepreneurs tend to be focussed on their big idea and making it a reality, but the money side isn’t necessarily where there energies are naturally directed.

While you can always outsource your finances to a professional accountant to a certain extent, you still need to know and understand your numbers to enable you to spot any issues or trends which you might need to address within your business.

Here are five tips for new entrepreneurs to help with financial management:

1. Record and organise your finances

Whether you are managing your finances yourself or supplying all of your information to an accountant to deal with, it’s important to be organised and keep records of all of your income, outgoings and expenses.

This includes keeping copies of all your receipts, invoices, and any other paperwork related to financial issues, in an orderly fashion. Just putting them all into a shoe box won’t cut it when you are an entrepreneur.

Just using a simple spreadsheet to record income and outgoings can be enough to start with, when setting up a new business, or as the business grows you might need to invest in accounting software to help record all of the financial transactions.

2. Keep track of your credit score

As an entrepreneur you might well need to seek funding for your business either to start it up at the beginning or further down the line to help with an expansion of your services so make you’re your credit is up to scratch.

The last thing you want to do is start a business only to find your credit score or existing level of debt means you can’t get the funding you need to grow the company a few years down the line. Take action to improve your credit score ideally before you start out.

3. Have an emergency fund

While setting up a new business often involves expense rather than profit initially it’s still important to make sure you have money put aside for an emergency – you might need to suddenly buy new equipment or replace a computer for example, so try saving an emergency pot to help take the pressure off.

You can create the fund easily by putting a small amount aside every week so it needn’t be too taxing to save enough to help keep as a buffer. You never know when a client might not be able to pay you or a supplier might go bust so an emergency fund can be the difference between success and failure.

4. Seek professional advice

If you are brand new to business then don’t get daunted or overwhelmed by all of the financial obligations or requirements. If the finance side is beyond your knowledge then don’t bury your head in the sand but seek professional help.

Whether you hire a full-time professional accountant or use the services of a part-time book keeper they can both help and provide expert advice to guide you as you take your business forward as well as looking after the books. You can even make it easier for you by signing up for accounting services offered by companies like Crunch. You can find out how they help small businesses here.

5. Set short-term and long-term financial goals

As well as knowing and understanding your business numbers you should set financial goals for the business to achieve as well. Have short term goals for what you want the business to achieve in the next month, the next quarter and the next year.

You should also have a longer term forecasting tool to predict the income you expect to bring in over the next year to five years, to help make sure you keep your business on track and meet all of your income goals.

As well as your business goals you should also set savings goals which allow you to have enough put aside to pay your tax contributions every year so you don’t get caught out with a big bill at the end of the tax year and nothing to pay it with.

Conclusion

Financial management is a key element to running a business and is a skill which every new entrepreneur needs to learn if they are to be successful in the corporate world. No business can survive if it’s not financially viable.

There are few tips here to help make financial management easier to cope with but if financial management really is beyond your skill set then you should always seek professional guidance and advice to make sure your business can still thrive, leaving you free to focus on the aspects of entrepreneurship where you are strongest.

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December 11, 2018

What exactly is leasing? – A detailed information

lending carA recent article in a UK newspaper claimed 1.6 million Brits currently lease their car – but how many actually understand what they’re doing?

When I first leased a car, I had no idea how it worked. I assumed a lease was something you got on a retail building and not a car!

Don’t let the complexity scare you though. Leasing can be a practical and affordable form of car finance if you take the time to get to know how it works. In this blog, I’ll run you through what leasing is, how it works and a couple different forms of leasing finance.

What is a lease?

To understand the difference between leasing and buying, you need to have a look at what you’re actually paying for in a lease.

When you buy a car outright, your payment covers the full value that the vehicle is worth. Once you’ve paid the full price (either immediately or over time), you become the legal owner of the car.

With leasing, you essentially ‘rent’ a car for a given period of time and return it at the end of your contract. Unlike buying a car, you’re never the legal owner of the car, although you are usually its registered keeper.

Why lease? Because depreciation hurts

Leasing is an attractive option for a lot of people because it eliminates one of the major problems that comes with owning a car – the cost of depreciation (depreciation is how quickly a car loses value).

According to the AA, new cars can lose up to 10% of their value the moment you drive them off the forecourt. Worse, the worst of the bunch can lose up to 60% of their value in the first year of ownership!

With these motors, if you’re planning on selling your car after a few years, you’re in for a shock when you check what it’s worth.

Contract Hire

Contract hire (more commonly known as leasing) is an arrangement where someone ‘rents’ a new car for a set period of time from a dealer. During the contract, the individual pays just enough to pay off the car’s depreciation. (Plus a little profit for the dealer, of course.) At the end of the contract, the individual returns the car to the dealer and they both go their separate ways.

With leasing deals, you aren’t the legal owner of the car but you are the registered keeper. That means you have get the car regularly serviced and keep it in a good condition.

The best thing about leasing compared to other finance options is the monthly payments, which tend to be significantly lower. That’s because, as I already mentioned, you’re only paying off the depreciation. You can also trade your car in every few years for a brand new model!

Tom Butcher worked behind the scenes in print journalism for years until he discovered the wonders of the web. He writes for several publications, covering the finance, automotive and tech sectors. At the moment, he is helping LeaseFetcher teach the world about car leasing.

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