Small business owners heading into 2018 have a lot to be happy about — but they’ve also got some major concerns about the continued success of their businesses.
Capital One polled small business owners about their hopes and fears, and here’s what the latest Small Business Growth Index has to say about their responses.
All told, small business owners feel good about their finances. Nearly half (47 percent) say their businesses’ sales rose in the past six months—the highest percentage recorded by the survey since the second quarter of 2013. Some 37 percent say their financial position has improved from one year ago, too.
But it’s not all sunshine. While small business owners are happy with their finances, they’re also wondering how long the good times will last. In fact, two of the top three concerns cited by entrepreneurs in the survey are financial in nature. Continue reading
Accurately tracking financial data is not only critical for running the day-to-day operations of your small business, but it is also essential when seeking funding from lenders or investors to take your business to the next level. In addition, keeping tabs of your finances can help ensure your products and services are priced right, identify what your margins are, determine your cash flow and make filing taxes easier.
Here are three basic financial statements that are important for your small business:
- Balance sheet. This statement provides an overall financial snapshot of your small business. As an equation, it looks like liabilities + owner’s equity = assets. The two sides of the equation must balance out. There are two types of assets: current and fixed. Current assets include cash or other holdings that can quickly be converted to cash within a year. These may include inventory, prepaid expenses and accounts receivable. Machinery, equipment, land, buildings, furniture and other essentials that you are not planning to sell are considered fixed assets. Liabilities can be broken down into current or short-term liabilities, such as accounts payable and taxes, and long-term debt such as bank loans or notes payable to stockholders. Owner’s equity includes any invested capital or retained earnings. If you captured all of your accounting information correctly, both sides of the balance sheet equation should be equal. Download SCORE’s template to start setting up your own balance sheet.
Read more on the SBA.gov website.
Your business success depends on many factors. Managing your money well and understanding your finances are two of the most critical. Unless you are an accountant by trade, it’s likely that you will need some outside guidance and insight as you start and grow your company.
Getting help from an accountant can benefit your business in a number of ways:
- An accountant can inform you of legitimate ways to reduce your tax liability.
- An accountant can make sure you are aware of reporting requirements and deadlines. If you’re not in compliance, you might have to pay fines.
- An accountant can assist you in filing your taxes, saving you time and sparing you headaches.
- An accountant can make suggestions that will help you run your business more profitably.
by OnDeck CFO Howard Katzenberg
Howard took the time to answer our questions about growing a business, how to manage lending in the modern era, and the most important financial tasks for any small business owner. Continue reading
Except in a few cases, the law does not require any specific kind of records. However, you may want to include all of these items, no matter what process of recordkeeping is chosen:
- Business checkbook
- Daily summary of cash receipts
- Monthly summary of cash receipts
- Check disbursements journal
- Depreciation worksheet
- Employee compensation record
- Any financial statements
Also, be diligent in keeping these records as well, whether it be the original source documents OR electronic copies:
- Gross receipts
- Travel, transportation, entertainment & gift expenses
- Employment taxes
- Cancelled checks
by Jerry Slade, ByTheBook Keepers, Inc.
In the early 80s, I think it was, I was approached by Intuit to be an Alpha contributor to their brand new program called QuickBooks. I was happy to participate in the program as I was “doing” bookkeeping for a few Tax clients at the time and nothing else was very good for Bookkeeping then.
QuickBooks turned out to be a great program for larger “small businesses” and companies with an experienced accountant on board, but it was mostly sold to small business owners who were told they could do their own bookkeeping. Many could and still do, but……..why? Continue reading