#business accounting software
5 Top Picks for Small Business Cloud-Based Accounting
Small business owners don’t need to purchase expensive business accounting software programs or spend hours lost in complicated reports. Any accounting software will provide the basic applications for accounting tasks, but packages designed for small office owners and manager tend to simplify the process and provide essentials that include a general ledger, the capability to create detailed invoices or view business inventory and purchase history.
Cloud accounting services—software stored and accessed online—is an attractive option for small business owners. When using cloud accounting software, IT tasks such as version upgrades and data backup are managed by the application vendor.
In looking at small business accounting options, CIO.com specifically looked for applications designed to meet both the budget and the needs of a typical small office or small business. We chose five cloud accounting service options available cost $20 or less per month and are easy to use—even for small business owners with little or no experience with accounting tasks.
FreshBooks: Guided Help Boxes Make Small Business Accounting Easy
FreshBooks is a simple cloud accounting application designed to help small business owners to get organized and get paid. Since it’s a hosted accounting service, you can access your business data everywhere—on a mobile device or desktop computer—and your data is secure and backed up for you.
FreshBooks features options for online payments, expense tracking, time-tracking and accounting reports and taxes. Highlights include customizing invoices, sending late payment reminders, automatic and recurring-expense tracking, managing different rates for multiple projects and profit/loss reports.
Small business owners will appreciate FreshBooks’ guided step-by-step wizard and help boxes that appear each time you perform a new task, such as create a new invoice or add a new client to your records. As you familiarize yourself with FreshBooks, you can turn these helpful tips off.
FreshBooks is free for 30 days, with the basic business plan starting at $19.95 per month. There’s also an add-on store where you’ll find third-party applications to add new features and functionality to FreshBooks. Some apps are free—such as the Constant Contact Export and the FreshBooks Connector for Sage Peachtree (now known as Sage 50 )—while others are available on a monthly subscription basis.
QuickBooks Online Simple Start: A Good Value for Small Businesses
Today, QuickBooks is synonymous with small business accounting. While a number of standalone and hosted versions are available, QuickBooks Online Simple Start is a good value for small office accounting needs.
The online version is $12.95 per month and includes a 30-day free trial. This software makes it easy to create invoices, track sales and expenses, download banking transactions and access business data on any mobile device. Other handy features in Online Simple Start include check printing and exporting data to Microsoft Excel.
If you need a little more functionality than QuickBooks Online provides, there are a few add-ons. These include the “Payroll Bundle” to pay your employees and a merchant service app to accept debit, credit cards and checks in QuickBooks Online.
Kashoo: Professional Invoices, Simple Dashboards
Kashoo is another cloud accounting service worth a look. It’s a simple accounting app for small businesses offering anytime access from an iPad or Web browser.
Features for the small business include connecting to online bank accounts and credit cards, professional invoices, simple dashboards and options to categorize income and expenses specifically for tax reporting. In addition, you can easily share your business data with your accountant online. Finally, Kashoo boasts secure, double-entry accounting for bank reconciliation and financial statements.
Kashoo is priced at $16 per month. A free version is available; however, users are limited to 20 transactions each month.
Outright: Online Accounting for Ecommerce Businesses
Outright is an easy-to-use cloud accounting system that lets small business ecommerce owners organize and keep track of sales and finances in one place. At a glance, you can see where money is going, view profit/loss statements and see who your customers are.
You can link existing accounts such as banks, credit cards, Paypal, eBay, your own Web store or FreshBooks to Outright, and you can import your existing transaction history. From then on, Outright downloads your new data each day. Another useful feature: Outright organizes all of your data into IRS-approved tax categories, potentially lowering the workload and headache level at tax time.
Small business owners on the go will appreciate the Outright iPhone app; with the mobile app, you can stay on top of your business and enter travel expenses and mileage from the road.
Outright offers a free account, but small businesses are more likely to use the Plus version ($9.95 per month), which offers more features than the free version.
Xero: Share Your Business Numbers Online
With Xero online accounting, you can share access to the latest numbers and check cash flow in real-time. Once loaded, Xero offers a dashboard to quickly view your bank balances, invoices, bills and expense claims. There’s also an interactive graph to show money going in and out; you can also monitor specific data accounts from the dashboard.
One standout feature in Xero is the capability to collaborate online so small business employees can work as a team on financials. You can share your data and collaborate with your accountant and bookkeeper to get the advice you need. Xero lets you invite an unlimited number of people for free; you control what each person can see.
The invoicing system lets you customize invoices and connect with your customers through online invoicing. There are also options to create repeating invoices and schedule bill payments, and all payments, returns and credits are tracked automatically.
Pricing for Xero starts at $19 per month. Mobile apps for Apple, Android and Blackberry are available. Third-party add-ons can expand Xero functionality by incorporating CRM, inventory management, invoicing, job systems and other specialized business tasks.
#business loans for bad credit
You Can Apply for These Small Business Loans with Bad Credit
Small business owners are often turned away by lenders when they have poor credit. That’s because a bad credit score implies you have not managed your finances properly in the past.
Luckily, it’s possible to secure small business loans with poor credit.
A number of alternative lenders are offering loan solutions for bad credit today. These lenders place more importance on the operating history and strength of your business. In other words, they do not focus solely on your credit score when they consider your loan application.
Here are some loans for bad credit options worth exploring.
Small Business Loans with Bad Credit
The best thing about Kabbage is that it does not require a minimum credit score to qualify. It does, however, check your credit history. If you are looking for some short-term working capital, Kabbage is worth trying. You can borrow from its line of credit and repay on an as-needed basis.
To qualify, you should have minimum annual revenue of $50,000 and have been in business for at least a year. You must also have a business checking account, bookkeeping software or an online payment platform.
It takes only a few minutes to complete the online application process and if approved you can get funds in just a couple of days.
Fundbox does not have a minimum credit score or minimum annual revenue requirement. Instead, it takes the value of your invoices and ability to repay the loan into consideration.
Funding is prompt and takes up to just three business days.
To qualify, you must use bookkeeping software or online accounting that can link to Fundbox and have a minimum of six months’ activity in one of these software applications.
OnDeck offers both term loans and lines of credit. You can go for the term loan if you are looking for some quick cash to expand. If you want to manage your cash flow and working capital, a line of credit is your best option.
To qualify for OnDeck’s term loan, you must have a personal credit score of 500 or higher. For a line of credit, your personal credit score should be at least 600.
Once you complete the online application process, you’ll get a decision within a few minutes and funding as soon as the following day.
Interestingly, OnDeck reports your payment activity to the three credit bureaus, which means paying off your loan on time can boost your credit score.
If you lack collateral, have poor credit and unpaid invoices, you may consider BlueVine. The lender offers an advance based on the value of your invoices. Approval is based on the strength of your cash flow and the financial strength of your debtors.
You do need to have a personal credit score of 530 or more to qualify. Also you should have at least $120,000 in annual revenue and have been in business for at least three months.
If you have a new business, StreetShares is a good option to explore. The lender requires a minimum of one year in business and $25,000 in annual revenue. But even if you have been in business for only six months and you can qualify with $100,000 in revenue.
You need to have a minimum personal credit score of 600 or more and a strong cash flow to be eligible.
Dealstruck is a good option if you are looking for different loan products. The lender offers a term loan for expansion, an asset-based line of credit for businesses with unpaid invoices and an inventory line of credit for businesses that have recurring inventory purchase requirements.
To qualify, you need to have a minimum credit score of 600, although company CEO Ethan Senturia has said that the company accepts scores in the 500 range. You also need at least $150,000 in annual revenue and need to have been in business for at least a year.
A bad credit score may create problems for you when you try securing funds for your business, but it shouldn t stop you from exploring options. You need to understand your needs and look for options that meet your requirements.
Shubhomita Bose is a Staff Writer for Small Business Trends. She covers key studies and surveys about the small business market, along with general small business news. She draws on 8 years of experience in copywriting, marketing and communications, having worked extensively on creating content for small and medium sized enterprises.
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#free business website
Free Websites for Small Businesses
If you’re a small business owner, it’s easier than you may have heard to establish a web presence.
Google will help you get your small business up online
After launching the Get Your Business Online program several years ago, Google has now rebranded the effort and is calling it Let’s Put Our Cities on the Map. By logging on and selecting your state, you can have access to the following:
- Free, easy-to-build website
- Free customized domain name
- Free web hosting for one year
- Free online tools and training
- Learn how to put more information about your business into Google
- Get your company verified for Google searches
- Add information such as location, hours of operation
- Add photos to enhance the listing
- Get a diagnostic tool to see how you can improve yourlisting and visibility
After the first year, you’ll have to pay $16 annually for your domain name and $6 a month for hosting. Additional email support is available after 12 months for a fee.
So the easy part is getting your site up and running. The hard part is getting traffic to your site and updating your info online all the time. Google is hosting free seminars across the country to help you with that part.
For example, if you’re a restaurant owner, you might want to post your daily special each day. If you’re a retail storefront, you’d probably want to post at least a weekly special. A static website that doesn’t get updated won’t engage people. They’ll visit once or twice online and never come back again.
Other options to get your small business online
While I like the Google options, my new favorite choice for small business websites is a pay service called SquareSpace.com. My second favorite choice is SmallBusiness.Yahoo.com. Check them out!
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About the author: Clark Howard
Clark Howard is a consumer expert whose goal is to help you keep more of the money you make. His national radio show and website show you ways to put more money in your pocket, with advice you can trust. View More Articles
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21 Great Small Business Blogs
If you’ve ever searched for small business blogs, you know how ubiquitous they are—everyone, it seems, is blogging about small business (as well as entrepreneurship and startups). Most of these blogs are just marketing tools their creators try to lure you in with a few bits of generic information and advice and then comes the pitch for whatever they want to sell to small businesses.
There are some blogs, however, that do provide guidance, insight and advice for small business owners about how to build successful ventures.
Here are twenty-one of the best blogs out there for small business owners—providing education, information and inspiration:
A blog with small business news and tips that is crowd-curated. BizSugar’s community of readers share business blog posts, videos and other content from which readers of the blog can learn something, For those that share content, they are reinforcing their reputation and brand and bringing online visibility to their content. The community votes on member-submitted tips, advice and information, advancing the most popular (and what’s considered by the community to be most useful) posts to the home page. Top posts are pushed to the top or can make it into the BizSugar Top 10 list.
Kabbage is redefining how small business find and apply for loans online and their blog is full of tips to grow, manage, fund, or innovate your small business.
A blog from Derek Halpern, who writes about sales, marketing, entrepreneurship and the world of social media. Halpern was called “the master of social media” and the world of online communications by Inc. magazine.
Small business owners are often limited by their marketing budget. DIY Marketers focuses on those creative marketing strategies that help you reach more customers for less money and Ivana Taylor makes it fun.
Raw, funny insights from the entrepreneur Penelope Trunk about starting, running and marketing a business. You’ll also find advice on productivity, management, blogging and other business-related issues, as well as life lessons—all of them Trunk’s, of course, but useful nonetheless.
If you re looking for a digest of the latest and greatest marketing tips and news, Ann Handley s got you covered. Her aim with Marketing Profs is to educate the modern marketer using real world data and examples. With the PRO membership, you get access to their best content.
Both Sides Of The Table
A blog written by Mark Suster, a two-time entrepreneur who sold one of those companies to Salesforce.com and then became a venture capitalist. (Get it? Both sides of the table?) He’s a general partner in Upfront Ventures and blogs about startups, entrepreneurship, sales, marketing, management, leadership and more.
The mother of all content marketing blogs. Copyblogger will help you advance your content marketing skills across the board. They produce some of the most valuable content resources on the web and their topics cover a wide range. Writing well is a skill that requires frequent studying and practice and Copyblogger can be an excellent guide to improvement.
A blog written by Fred Wilson, managing partner of two venture capital firms, Flatiron Partners and Union Square Ventures. Wilson is a leader in the entrepreneurial community and has been a VC for more than 20 years. He has been writing on the blog everyday since Sept. 2003 and the topics are wide-ranging but related to starting and running a business (while also trying to live a somewhat normal life).
Small Business Survival
This blog has been around since 2006 and is geared toward rural and small town small businesses, with how-to articles and an emphasis on social media marketing, plus a chance for business owners to share good news in the blog’s weekly “Brag Basket.”
A blog written by small business experts on a wide range of business challenges. Business Banter has great content on the hard part of business to motivate you to keep going. They also write a lot about internet marketing.
Blog of consultant and speaker Adrian Swinscoe, which features interviews with business people and posts about customer experience, building a customer-centric business, service, social media as well as employee and customer engagement.
All social everything! What I love the most about Buffer is their transparency. They are not afraid to share their data, what they ve failed at, and what they ve learned. They have a buzzing community of people who want to discuss what they ve learned from the Buffer blog. Chat with Buffer s content creators and grow in a fun, exciting community!
The Franchise King
The blog of Joel Libava, otherwise known as The Franchise King®. Libava is a franchise ownership advisor and the author of Become a Franchise Owner! The Star-Up Guide to Lowering Risk, Making Money and Owning What You Do (John Wiley) Everything you ever wanted to know about researching, choosing and buying a franchise.
Evergreen Small Business
Written by Stephen L. Nelson, a Seattle-based CPA who specializes in serving small business owners, this blog is focused on the details around running a small business, like tax issues related to LLCs, a review of do-it-yourself incorporation kits, Affordable Care Act information for small businesses and how to handle past due tax returns.
Mixergy interviews entrepreneurs on their successes and failures. Learn from a wide range of passionate business leaders who not only had a business ideas but a mission. Mission is #1 at Mixergy.
Google Small Business
This is Google’s official blog for small business owners, where the company discusses new releases, new Google tools and how to make the most of them, and instructional information like how to set up your first data feed, and experts weighing in on how to make the most of social media. The blog is somewhat promotional—after all, it’s mostly about Google products and tools—but it’s still very useful.
Duct Tape Marketing
John Jantsch is his name, and the World s Most Practical Small Business Expert is his game. He runs Duct Tape Marketing, providing reliable marketing advice to small business owners and marketers.
Have you been meaning to read up on the great philosophers but don t have the time? Farnam Street will teach you how to think, read, and perceive the world around you the way the famous big thinkers do. Become a better leader and go to bed smarter than when you woke up.
So there s Fast Company and then there s the Fast Company blog. They do things differently by using Tumblr as their blog platform filled with beautiful pics, gifs, and that same digestable information we crave from Fast Company. They cover leadership topics as well as design, productivity, business, and useful life topics.
Because who doesn t like the dude?
Content Marketing Playbook
The Top 10 Best Small Business Blogs for Entrepreneurs in 2015
As a small business owner myself, I know how important it is to stay up-to-date with the ever changing trends that the business world throws at us.
Because I watch very little TV, and rely heavily on the internet for keeping up-to-date with the news, it s somewhat obvious that I d also use the online medium to learn, consume and also produce and market my own content. Bloggers (and increasingly, podcasters, as well as video producers and many are wearing all three hats!) have the ability to express themselves in somewhat ‘real time’, and in an evergreen way, by keeping their content fresh, and sharing their opinions with the world.
However, in the world of business blogging there s a lot of noise. A lot of content marketers are gagging to get your attention, and with only so many minutes a day to devote to learning and consuming content (personally, I put aside around 30-45 minutes daily), you’ve got to be very strict with who’s content you make time for.
This is the reason why I’ve put this list together. This collection are the best small business blogs I know of right now. My personal favorite / go-to people in the world of small business blogging and online business building. Individually they strike a chord with me enough to keep me coming back for more, together they act as an ever-growing encyclopaedia of business brilliance.
Note: These blogs are listed in no particular order of preference, or influence.
Chris Brogan s Blog
Chris is the only repeat awardee on this list, from last year. I ve known this man for several years and he has continued to deliver quality, helpful, thoughtful and inspiring content to every business owner wise enough to tune into what he has to say. I m assuming (heavily!) that you re one of them!
Must Read: Dear Podcaster Chris lays it down in true Brogan fashion. Letting podcasters know exactly how to approach expert guests, record with them and the importance of respecting their time. This SO needed to be said!
Smart Passive Income
It s no secret that Pat and I are very close friends. Known for being the crash test dummy of online business he s launched and grown several business, meaning you can learn what works and what doesn t, directly from watching him. We recently started a new partnership together, 1-Day Business Breakthrough. too!
Must Read: And They Thought I was Stupid – In this post from early 2014 Pat reflects on his decision to starting podcasting and what it s done for his brand along with the 468 comments on the post itself!
Gary Vaynerchuk s Blog
In 2010 I picked up a copy of Crush It! by Gary and became an instant fan. Since then I ve had to chance to have him on the podcast twice, as well as hanging out in the US a little together. Ballsy, to the point and with a BS detector like I ve never seen before, he s an influencer in every imaginable way.
Must Read: Cloud Dirt: How I Do Business – This is a fantastic short film that Gary and his team produced to explain how he feels about business today and why he doesn t focus on anything that won t bring him closer to his goals.
Amy Porterfield s Blog
I often refer to Amy as the Queen of Social Media . But, she has become so much more than that in recent years. Now focusing on everything from list building to product marketing, Amy is paving the way for other entrepreneurs in a crowded space that needs to hear it like it is. She s simply awesome.
Must Read: 3 Strategies to Rapid List Building – I often say that the health and overall success of your online business is directly tied to your email list. This post (and podcast episode) is compulsory consumption for everyone!
Entrepreneur on Fire
Talk about taking the bull by the horns! John Lee Dumas hit the scene a couple years ago and hasn t looked back. In 2014, along with his partner in crime (and life!), Kate Erickson, he turned his podcasting empire into a thriving million dollar entity something rarely seen in the online infomarketing world.
Must Read: 2014: The Year in Review – John and Kate (some would say the real boss at EOFire!) had a remarkable year. In this post they show you exactly how they did it, along with warts and all! Great annual review write-up.
Copyblogger have long been a guiding light in the very dark tunnel that is content marketing . Brian Clark and his team are still leading the way, with decisions such as cutting comments from their blog, deleting their Facebook page and reinventing content publishing by developing the New Rainmaker platform.
Must Read: Why Copyblogger is Killing its Facebook Page – With social media changing at a drastic pace, sometimes equally drastic decisions are required. Copyblogger shows you the facts behind this big decision.
It s not one of the top ranked social media and content marketing websites on the internet for no reason! Jay Baer and his team consistently publish amazingly thought-provoking and inspiring entrepreneurial content. Whether it s a blog post, podcast, or an episode of JayToday TV subscribe now.
Must Read: Can You Build a Content Marketing Super Brand – I said thought-provoking for a reason. This ll get ya thinking! A deep dive into Jay s mind as he discusses the in s and out s of developing your own super brand.
Marie Forleo s Blog
I do not know Marie. We ve not met, and other than a few brief social media exchanges, we ve never even spoken. But, boy, oh boy can this lady market the hell out of herself and everything she stands for. Want to build a personal brand? Watch what Marie does, rinse and repeat. She s simply awesome.
Must Read: Can t Turn Off Your Bizself? 2 Quick Steps to Flip the Switch! – In this video (she vlogs, instead of blogs) Marie discusses the importance of switching off as an entrepreneur, and gives us a couple of great tips to get started.
Duct Tape Marketing
John Jantsch is an all-star, old school marketing player that has continued to deliver the marketing and sales goods over and over again. His team produce a blog that s a mix of his experience, coupled together with the new in s and out s of online marketing all thrown into one.
Must Read: How to promote Every Piece of Content Your Create – I loved this birds-eye view of how John and his team cross promote their content archive. This shows you the power of on-going marketing for older content.
Michael Hyatt s Blog
When I think of Michael Hyatt, I think of a Leader s Leader . With over two decades of experience in the publishing world, he has since taken online entrepreneurship to a whole new level with his blog, podcast, products and membership communities. He s a one-man leadership, walking talking workshop!
Must Read: Advice to First Time Authors – This is about as real as advice gets. It s short, sharp, to the point and timeless. Michael s take on everything from finding an agent to considering self publishing is must-read material.
Don t Forget THIS Blog, Too!
Along with these awesome bloggers, podcasters, online video producers and all-round content marketing rock stars, please don t forget to continue to tune into this blog and my podcast on a regular basis. I promise you lots of content to help you become the most productive and profitable entrepreneur possible.
#business phone service
phone service with
big business features
Get a big solution on a small budget.
RingCentral gives you many of the same tools that large companies use to grow their business. Because everything is in the cloud, you get all the benefits of a robust and versatile business telephone service without being responsible for its management and oversight. RingCentral manages your communications for you, for one fixed cost that’s surprisingly affordable and budget-friendly. Get started with a 30-day free trial.
“I chose RingCentral for the features, customer service, and ability to get more phone
numbers and services. I get more for less.”
— Juan Gala. President, Business Management Consultants
Extend your reach.
Every small business has a unique set of needs when it comes to communications solutions. This includes a full suite of services such as a phone line and a business phone number (local or toll free); a telephone service with unlimited domestic calling and call forwarding, call routing, and voicemail; text messaging; and an internet fax service. RingCentral’s small business phone service offers you these features and more in order to enhance your professional reputation. It allows you to be available to take more calls, make more contacts, and close more deals.
“One conference call alone would have been more expensive than
a month of RingCentral service.”
— Michael Carr. Founder, VolunteerHub
Be more mobile.
You’re responsible for building and managing a thriving business. If on any given day your business is being run out of a hotel room, a coffee shop, or your car, so be it. Your on-the-go lifestyle demands that you be reachable at any time, anywhere. As the leading VoIP provider, RingCentral’s small business phone service is mobile-ready and ideal for bring your own device (BYOD) initiatives. With the RingCentral for iPhone or Android mobile app, you’re empowered to work the way you want while maintaining a unified business identity. Look big while remaining agile and able to respond instantly.
“We are huge advocates of anything that allows us to be out of the office
while still being 100% functional.”
— Noel Sesto. Managing Director and Founder, Control Freq (UK)
Integrate with your favorite productivity tools.
If you use Google for Work or other popular business applications, you’re going to like what RingCentral can do for you. Make and receive calls without leaving Gmail. Click to dial phone numbers that appear in emails, documents, and web pages. Schedule RingCentral Meetings and conference calls directly within Google Calendar. You can even fax documents directly from Google Docs and Microsoft Outlook, Word, and Excel. All of this is free with your RingCentral solution.
“Our entire business is in the cloud, from Google Apps to hosting,
and RingCentral is a big part of that mix.”
— Aron Susman. Co-Founder, TheSquareFoot
Remain in control always.
With RingCentral’s small business phone service, there are none of the capital equipment or hardware costs associated with legacy phone systems. All-inclusive pricing gives you a fixed, predictable cost with little to manage. There are no setup fees and free implementation advisors. If you choose to purchase a RingCentral internet protocol (IP) desk phone, your phone arrives pre-configured. RingCentral’s cloud phone service has built-in redundancy to keep your data safe and ensure automatic failover in the event of any outage. Even upgrades are automatic, with no discernible disruption of service.
“When setting up a business, managing costs and cash flow is imperative.
RingCentral provides transparent, fixed monthly pricing so you know what costs to
expect and can expand and scale the service up as your business grows.”
— Melissa Edmunds. Founder Managing Director, Safesip (UK)
Plan for growth.
Growing your business is made easier with RingCentral’s small business phone service. And when your success causes you to outgrow your solution, RingCentral is ready to help you step up to the next level. In all facets of business, at every stage, RingCentral has you covered.
“We are growing. We do plan on adding more staff to our support staff.
As we add new people, it’s not a high cost.”
— JC Burton. President, Woodline Solutions
Six good reasons to choose RingCentral phone service.
You’re on a tight budget, and you’ll find RingCentral’s transparent, all-inclusive pricing easy on your wallet.
You can’t afford to have your phones go down. RingCentral has servers in multiple locations to prevent outages and data loss.
Ranked #1 in “Ease of Use” *
RingCentral’s intuitive menu makes setup extremely easy. Features can be optimized to work the way you work even from your smartphone.
RingCentral’s cloud-based, internet phone system works with a multitude of useful cloud applications, including Google Docs and Gmail.
Go on the road with powerful features in the palm of your hand. RingCentral’s mobile app is available for iOS and Android devices.
24/7 Free Support
Your workday doesn’t adhere to normal office hours, and neither does RingCentral’s. Have questions or need help with your solution? We’re available.
RingCentral is certain to become indispensable to your small business during your 30-day trial.
If this isn’t the case, RingCentral will refund your money promptly.
#best bank for small business
Best Checking Accounts for Small Businesses in 2016