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The Importance of Bookkeeping for Your Small Business

Small Business Bookkeeping

Bookkeeping refers to keeping the financial records of a business operation. A bookkeeper, business owner, or family member usually performs this function. An accountant may be needed to interpret and adjust these financial records, prepare financial statements, and file tax returns.

Importance of bookkeeping 

You need financial information to help you run a business, even a small business. Cash is the life-blood of any business operation. Without cash, or the ability to get cash, your business probably will fail. Financial information tells you the sources and uses of cash. This information can serve as an early warning that you will run out of cash unless you make some changes in your business operation. This same information can help you minimize unnecessary uses of cash. It also can help you develop additional sources of cash. The financial information for your business activities should be kept separate from your personal activities. The best way to do this is to have a separate business checking account.

Do-it-yourself bookkeeping 

In this type of small business bookkeeping, the business owner or family member keeps the financial records. This may be done using hand-written records, or it may be done on your computer using an accounting program. The person who performs the bookkeeping may need to read a book on bookkeeping or accounting to know what to do. This type of book can be found at a local library, a local bookstore, or an online bookstore.

Hired bookkeeper 

You may want to hire a bookkeeper or an outside bookkeeping firm to maintain your financial records. This person or firm should have the qualifications and experience needed to perform this service. You should have confidence in this hired bookkeeper. You must be willing to share your financial information and discuss financial matters with this bookkeeper.

Online software 

Another way to maintain your small business bookkeeping records is to use online software. The Outright website is recommended for this purpose.  To begin using their services, you give them links to your various online business accounts. Then they can access the information from these online accounts and feed this information into your accounting system. Outright maintains your accounts using IRS-approved tax categories. This simplifies the preparation of your income tax return.

You can review your Outright financial information from any computer with Internet access. They even provide an iPhone app for this purpose. Besides the information that they automatically download from your online accounts, they allow you to enter other information such as your business mileage. Outright provides many types of useful reports to help you run your business operation. These reports include your profit and loss, your sources of income, your best customers, your biggest vendors, and your sales by state.

Final thoughts 

The financial information provided by your small business bookkeeping or accounting system helps you with both day-to-day business decisions and long-term business planning. You can't run your business without it.

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Why You Need Small Business Insurance

Small Business Insurance

It is important for small business owners to do everything they possibly can to protect themselves and their business. Obtaining small business insurance gives business owners peace of mind and safeguards their business against many liabilities. Even online businesses can benefit from having some kinds of business insurance. This article will provide a brief overview of the most common and useful types of small business insurance.

Commercial business insurance is not required by law, but having it can protect you against lawsuits, natural disasters or a death of any of the business owners. A lot of small business owners think that choosing to structure their business as a limited liability corporation is the same as having liability insurance. The truth is, no matter how your business is structured, only commercial liability insurance can protect you from business losses. When you are first starting your business, whether it is based in a physical location or completely online, do your research to find out if the local laws in your area require insurance for certain functions conducted through your business. This includes insuring company vehicles or individual employees who do certain tasks.

Some kinds of commercial business insurance are:

  • Product Liability: This coverage protects your business against lawsuits and injury claims caused by defective products that your business may produce.
  • General Liability: This coverage protects your business against lawsuits caused by general accidents, negligence and injuries.
  • Professional Liability: This coverage protects businesses that provide a service from lawsuits caused by malpractice, negligence and other incidents that may occur while providing the service to a customer.
  • Home-Based Business: This coverage protects home-based physical or online businesses from various liability and property damage.
  • Commercial Property: This coverage protects your company’s physical property from various damage caused by bad weather, fires, vandalism, burglary and more. With this type of insurance, the term property can be used to define the actual building that your business is based out of, computers your business owns, documents, and even lost revenue.
There are a lot of options for business insurance, so you will have to speak with your insurance company to make sure you choose the best coverage for your business.

If your business has employees, there are certain kinds of insurance that you are required to have by law. These kinds of insurance typically include:

  • Disability Insurance: Employers in the states of New York, California, New Jersey, Hawaii, Rhode Island and Puerto Rico are required to have disability insurance. Employers in other states can choose to offer this insurance as an employee benefit.
  • Unemployment Insurance Tax: All employers in the United States must pay unemployment insurance taxes. The amount varies by state. The first step in obtaining this insurance is registering with the workforce agency in your state.
  • Workers Compensation Insurance: Employers are also required to have workers compensation insurance. There are many ways to obtain this type of insurance. You can choose to go with a commercial insurance company, become self-insured or participate in your state’s workers compensation program.
Regardless of whether you run a physical business with employees or a home-based business online, small business insurance is something you need to look into. It not only protects your business, but your future revenue and assets as well.

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The Small Business Administration Offers Resources to Grow Your Business

Small Business Administration

Starting a small business is tough and it's even harder if you don't have access to resources to help you along your journey.  If you are thinking about or ready to start a business, there is a resource you definitely need to be aware of: the Small Business Administration (SBA).
The Small Business Administration is a U.S. government agency that assists small businesses and entrepreneurs. The agency’s activity can be summarized in three words that include contracts, capital and counseling. SBA loans are made through credit unions, banks and other lending companies that partner with the SBA. These loans are enhanced to provide up to a 90 percent guarantee. There are several services that the Small Business Administration provides for businesses today.


This agency provides various programs that help individuals start their own businesses. This includes topics on creating a business plan, choosing a business structure and obtaining licenses and permits. Additional information includes how to choose and register a business name and a guide to business regulations and laws.

Another useful guide that this agency provides is a basic course on how to manage a business. It includes useful information about how to grow a business, running a business, business regulations and laws. Additional topics include how to lead a company and how to get out of a business. It also includes a guide on local resources, health care and business guides for industry.


The agency also provides a guide to the loan programs it offers to help small businesses grow. Loan programs include debt financing, venture capital programs, surety bonds, microloan programs, the CDC/504 loan programs and disaster loans. Each of these loan programs also has a guide to eligibility requirements, use of their proceeds, fees, repayment terms, interest rates and the application process.

The agency also provides people with a guide to prepare their loan application. It includes topics that help people determine their financing needs and credit factors. The agency provides a business loan checklist. This checklist describes the documentation requirements and questions that lending companies will ask before approving a loan. The SBA also has a tool that helps people find small business loans from their local and state governments. These programs include venture capital, low interest loans and economic and scientific grants.


The Small Business Association also provides useful information about government grants. This includes application forms for construction and non-construction grants. The website has an article about research grants designed for small businesses from the Small Business Technology Transfer Group and Small Business Innovation Research. The agency also has a complete list of various government agencies that offer STTR and SBIR programs through the federal government. Additionally, the agency has a search tool that helps people find grants from local, state and federal governments.


This agency also provides a thorough guide to contracting. It includes steps that businesses should complete to increase their capacity to contract in the industry. It also explains the agency’s role in government contracting, small business size standards and much more. Additionally, the agency includes contracting support for small businesses. This informs people about government-provided tools to help entrepreneurs build their business potential to compete in the federal sector.

The Small Business Administration website helps business owners gain in-depth knowledge of the business world. At the same time, this agency provides numerous options to help people grow their businesses.  If you're ready to do business, the SBA is a place you should visit.

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