By Lilach Bullock
Being a small business owner presents its own unique set of challenges, and one of the main ones is not having the budget to do all you need to do. A successful business needs constant investing to keep it growing—more marketing spends, product or service improvement, getting more people to join the team, and so on.
If you are careful with your finances, invest only in what matters, and stay focused on your end goal, you can grow your business that much quicker. In this article, I’m going to share my top finance tips for small business owners.
1. Get cloud accounting software
I’ll be honest, accounting software saved my (business) life. True story. This is one of the best investments you can make as a small business owner; it will help you save a lot of time, become more productive, and get better results.
With a good accounting software tool, you will be able to:
- Easily keep track of all your expenses (most tools allow you to take pictures of your receipts and simply upload them).
- Create professional invoices easily and quickly—and since all your expenses are tracked, you can make sure that you’re billing the client for every expense.
- Avoid paperwork.
- Handle your taxes in a fraction of the time.
- Keep an eye on your inventory and all your transactions.
- Know exactly how much cash you have, as well as who needs to pay you.
It might be an extra investment, but ultimately, accounting software will also help you save a lot of time and even money. And sometimes, time can be more valuable than money:
2. Save time
As a business owner, your time is very valuable. In fact, bad time management can lead to losing business opportunities, losing money, and even to depression if you’re feeling unproductive. Not to mention, you’re losing money every time you spend hours on a task that, while essential, doesn’t help you make any money.
Instead, invest in virtual assistants or outsource tasks to help free up your time. Start by carefully tracking your time:
- What daily tasks are taking up your time?
- Which tasks take too long—much longer than they should—especially those that don’t help you grow your business, or help you make money?
- Which tasks could be easily handled by others?
- Which tasks are ones only you can do?
Spend some time looking over the results so that you can identify the tasks that are taking too long, and need to be cut down immediately. Consider how you can delegate all of these time-consuming tasks: Can your existing employees take over some of the tasks? Would outsourcing be a worthwhile investment?
It’s natural to be reticent to trust someone else; I’ve been a solopreneur/entrepreneur for years now, and I still find it difficult to trust others to do what I believe I can do better—and that’s a normal feeling to have when it’s your business, your passion project. You care about it the most, so obviously, you’re the best person to manage it. But the reality is, you can’t do everything by yourself. Without help, you could work yourself into an early grave, or lose your business, just because you don’t have enough time to do everything.