How To Start Your Own Bookkeeping Business By Lisa Newton

how to start your own bookkeeping business by lisa newton

Each state and local jurisdiction has its own rules for establishing a business. You’ll want to make sure you check with your Secretary of State to find out what licenses you may need. Think about the types of clients you want to serve, the types of services you will provide, and how you will deliver those services. This is a trend that is completely changing how bookkeepers and accountants do business, so you must understand how it works since it will have a direct impact on your business. You should study the topics that help the clients solve a problem related to your services. It particularly depends on your style of client management.

  • This goes beyond starting a business and hoping people show up.
  • Since you’re dealing with someone else’s private and sensitive data as a bookkeeper, you should also get insurance to protect yourself and your company should mistakes or catastrophe happen.
  • Traditionally, bookkeepers are the professionals charged with creating and tracking financial documents for the company they work for.
  • Online accounting software will let you look at accounts at the same time as your client.
  • For each process, create a step-by-step account for what needs to take place from the beginning of the process until the very end.

If possible, plan to meet your clients at their office or virtually. I do not recommend that you invite clients to your home office unless you know them very well and you have a private room where you can work. Check out our tips to consider when creating your home office to learn more of the do’s and don’ts when setting up a home office. You can create a dropbox for each client, and they can start submitting their information.

Ready To Start A Bookkeeping Business?

One of the benefits of starting an accounting firm is flexibility. So, the simple answer to the question is, yes—many accountants can and do work from a home office.

Is it easy to learn QuickBooks?

Is QuickBooks Hard to Learn? For individuals new to the software and the accounting profession, QuickBooks can present a bit of a learning curve. Employees who are familiar with accounting concepts and similar software, however, may find that QuickBooks is relatively easy to learn.

While this is a great opportunity for brands with growth goals, it introduces confusing sales tax regulations. When you’ve reached the point where it makes sense to hire outside help, you need to establish whether that individual is an employee or an independent contractor. Technically, Canadians are required to use the accrual method. To simplify things, you can use the cash method throughout the year and then make a single adjusting entry at year end to account for outstanding receivables and payables for tax purposes.

They both have cloud-based, mobile features available and are almost identical – you can manage invoices, projects, bank connections, inventories, expenses, bills, and more. QuickBooks Online offers the chance to get certified as a QuickBooks ProAdvisor through a series of comprehensive training courses.

What Kinds Of Tasks Do Bookkeepers Do?

Computer and math skills are also required since you’ll be computing numbers regularly with the help of bookkeeping software programs. However, freelance bookkeepers earn $20 to $40 on average, with some charging $75 per hour, and others report earning $150 and more per hour.

Is bookkeeping a profitable business?

For those with a head for numbers, an eye for detail and a love for paperwork, bookkeeping is a profitable business to start. A bookkeeper keeps the financial records for a company including expenses, profit and loss, and cash flow. Bookkeepers keep a computerized ledger detailing the company’s transactions.

In order to be an effective virtual bookkeeper, you need to be able to get access to source documentation – like bank statements! Yes, I could get login information for all of my clients to their banks and download the files that I need. It’s an investment at $20/mo per client, but I feel like I am saving at least that much of my time by utilizing their system. If I run across a client that utilizes a bank that doesn’t work on Hubdoc, then I simply don’t put them on it.

However, there are special apps designed especially fro the industry that work wonders. Xero even imports all of your banking transactions so business finances are a snap.

Create A Marketing Plan For Your Online Bookkeeping Business

Naming your business can be both a fun and stressful exercise. Your name must convey your brand since that is what a potential customer will see before they sit down with you for that initial consultation. This is not the time to be cute unless you can also be clear about what it is that you do. Look at our How to Become a Certified Bookkeeper guide for the details of these, plus other, bookkeeping certification programs. Tim is a Certified QuickBooks Time Pro, QuickBooks ProAdvisor, and CPA with 25 years of experience.

A good rule of thumb is to put 25% of your income aside, though more conservative estimates for high earners might be closer to one third. For the most part, a simple online presence is relatively easy to start with minimal start-up costs. And while an online presence won’t guarantee an increase in exposure, not having one can have a negative impact and can discredit you to a potential client.

how to start your own bookkeeping business by lisa newton

Keep reading to learn what bookkeepers do, the skills they require, and how much they get paid. Some bookkeepers earn $75 per hour while working from home, and making their own hours. To start with it sounds like she has done her own recording as there are repeated sentences and strange noises. There are few god points there but the endless sale pitch for her MLM company shouldn’t be published in a book/audio you pay for. Start your free 14-day trial of Shopify—no credit card required.

Some Firms Focus On A Specific Accounting Specialization Should I Consider A Niche Accounting Service?

Seek out relevant LinkedIn groups, reach out to potential clients, or put up posts stating you’re open for business and looking to take on more bookkeeping clients. Otherwise, you can opt for other online payroll services like ADP and Paychex that can help you pay your employees accurately and on time. If you don’t want to deal with payroll or don’t plan to hire employees to work under you, skip this tool.

Maybe you’ll focus on serving a niche like real estate or construction? By positioning yourself as a specialist, you’ll be able to target your marketing and talk specifically to one audience. You don’t need a huge amount of infrastructure to get started.

For instance, a firm might accept the risk and start as unincorporated to avoid the incorporation fees. Over time, as additional owners move into the entity structure, the firm can add additional shareholders or can reorganize as a partnership. Especially when the experience sets for an accountant is specific and narrow. And how to start a bookkeeping business credentials such as CPA, EA, attorneys, and state certifications are all still attractive to firms looking to hire. If you choose to meet clients in your home, liability and zoning can be an issue. If a client gets hurt inside your home office, or falls outside of it, it’s important to know the laws surrounding liability.

You’ll set up a long term vision of what you want your business to achieve and work backward to arrive at immediate priorities to focus on. Here are a few steps that you can take to “stay in the loop” on what’s going on in the bookkeeping/accounting industry. For more information on the right insurance coverage, check out our article on Bookkeeper, Accountant, and CPA Insurance. To assist you with this decision, I recommend that you get an introduction to the four common business structures by reading our Best Small Business Structure guide. The following is a checklist of what you need to do to establish your business at the local, state, and federal levels. Fit Small Business content and reviews are editorially independent. We may make money when you click on links to our partners.

You Can Personalize Your Business And Grow At Your Own Pace

Another tool that will make your life easier is practice management software. This software can help you organize and track the progress of client work and, in some cases, provide a portal to access your client’s books.

And they’re pretty much a must for starting any online business or side hustle these days. Companies want to hire virtual bookkeepers to help with the tasks they’d rather not do themselves. Becoming a virtual bookkeeper is a 100% legit way to make money, whether you want to do it as a side hustle or a full-time business. And again, all of these things can be done online using financial software programs, email and Zoom chats if it’s necessary to chat with clients. For example, with my freelance writing business, I have to keep track of invoices, expenses and quarterly tax payments.

how to start your own bookkeeping business by lisa newton

Traditionally, bookkeepers are the professionals charged with creating and tracking financial documents for the company they work for. These workers record financial details, update financial statements, and read over financial documents for accuracy. If there is a problem or miscalculation within an organization’s accounting or books, it is the bookkeeper’s job to find and fix it. How to set up, create and start your own bookkeeping business from scratch. Starting a business can be an overwhelming process, but if you follow this list, you’ll have your new store’s finances in order from the beginning.

This is my favorite marketing strategy for bookkeeping and accounting professionals to get bookkeeping clients. If you are targeting restaurant owners as bookkeeping clients, perhaps they’re on Instagram instead.

Get Certified

Figuring out what to charge is any small-business owner’s greatest challenge. Too little and you aren’t fairly compensated for your work; too much and you’ll have a tough time competing with other bookkeeping businesses. A major part of registering your business and opening up shop is choosing a business entity.

Another important part of setting up your home office is establishing a professional business number that has a professional voicemail message. I recommend getting a virtual phone number that can be routed to your existing cellphone. The virtual phone number can have its own professional voicemail message and will allow you to keep your personal number private. Startup bookkeeping businesses will typically use a startup credit card to float working capital expenses, earn rewards, and manage employees. In our Best Credit Cards for Startup Businesses, we have selected the top five credit cards for startup businesses. Writing a business plan is something that everyone should do before they start their own business.

For example, Intuit, a company that sells popular accounting software TurboTax and QuickBooks, offers two training programs on Coursera for free. The first, Bookkeeping Basics, is designed to teach you the ropes as a beginner.

It isn’t hard to start a bookkeeping business if you’re good at handling finances and maintaining records. You need to maintain record books, manage company finances, and create a proper cash flow statement for your client. To start a business, you will have to pick a name for your virtual bookkeeping business.