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6 Accounting Tips for Your Business

2020 was unquestionably an unexpected year! During difficult times, it is more important than ever to examine long-term business strategies that have been impacted, as well as to tighten up your bookkeeping. Here are some accounting pointers for planning for 2021.

1. Make the transition to accrual accounting.

If you’re currently utilising cash accounting, now might be a good moment to switch to accrual accounting.

Accrual accounting is the practice of documenting revenue and expenses as they occur, rather than when payment is received or made, so there is no time lag between incurring a cost and paying it, or between selling something and receiving payment.

Inputting an invoice into your accounting system as soon as you receive it, even if you don’t intend to pay it until it’s due, is a good example.

Accrual accounting provides a more accurate picture of how your firm is performing (you must, however, keep track of your cash flow to ensure you’re not overestimating your ability to pay) and is often the accounting system that most small businesses should strive for.

2. Account for inventory

Did you close the fiscal year with a lot of goods in the warehouse and a lot of expenses that seemed a lot greater than revenue? This isn’t always a bad thing if you account for the inventory as an asset!

Check the report on 30 June if your warehouse or inventory software keeps track of your stock levels on a daily basis. In your balance sheet, for example, you can insert a line item named Finished Goods that represents the worth of that stock. You have the option of expressing the number as a cost or a retail value.

You may more successfully plan for regular inventory flow in the future year if you have a better understanding of your purchases, stock levels, and sales. The ideal inventory scenario is one that involves frequent turnover so that your cost of goods sold (COGS) and, as a result, margins appropriately reflect any cost increases or decreases as they occur.

3. Claim instant asset write-offs

Small firms may be able to claim immediate asset write-offs in specific instances. These are instant deductions for the business component of an asset’s cost that apply in the year the asset is first used or installed and ready to use.

Instant asset write-offs can be utilised for a variety of things, including:

  • as long as the cost of each asset is less than the applicable criterion, you can have several assets.
  • purchases, both new and used.

Cars used for business are allowed, but only to a certain extent. For the 2019–20 tax year, for example, the automobile limit is $57,581. If you utilise your vehicle for 75% of the time for business, the sum you can deduct under the immediate asset write-off is 75% of $57,581, or $43,186.

Instant asset write-offs for corporate assets have increased to $150k, up from $30k last year, and eligibility has changed.

Changes, eligibility, thresholds, and directions for claiming quick asset write-offs can all be found on the ATO’s website.

4. Forecast sales for 2021

This may seem impossible to do after 2020, but there is now six months’ worth of data on how the pandemic and subsequent lockdowns have impacted small enterprises. New consumer trends are emerging, ranging from increased grocery and home goods expenditure to a preference for Australian-made goods. Either you’ve realised your position in the changing market, or you’ve realised you need to work on pivoting your product.

In either case, it’s critical to examine your revenue throughout the previous months and years in order to forecast what your sales will be in the next year. If you know how your firm has been affected this year and you’re on a growth path, you might be able to aim for a 20-30% increase in revenue in 2021.

Perhaps it’s more feasible to take 2019 figures and strive for a 10-20% increase. When it comes to sales forecasting, there are no right or wrong answers; simply careful approximations based on your own sales history and observations of external factors.

5. Create a budget

After forecasting your sales, you can look at your costs to create a budget that determines how much you should be spending and what to reach your goals.

You can start by running a 12-month profit and loss statement from the previous year to see your regular expenses. 

Then you can categorise these costs as fixed or variable costs. Fixed costs stay the same regardless of business activity or size, whereas variable prices will vary with product sales.

For example, email marketing software maybe $100 a month no matter how many campaigns you send out, but your packaging expense will increase with sales volume.

So, in that case, you can estimate your fixed expenses based on your monthly costs and calculate your variable payments as a percentage of sales.

Creating a budget will bring your attention to areas in which spending could be reduced and the other regions in which it could be increased. For instance, you may be cutting conference costs in 2021, but you may want to increase your digital advertising spend with those sales goals!

6. Establish a cashflow forecast

You can build a cash flow projection to determine whether to maintain cash in the business and when to use it after you know how much you plan to sell and how much you want to spend.

A cash flow projection will typically start with a starting bank balance (i.e., actual cash on hand) and illustrate cash inflows and outflows for each period, usually month by month.

Outflows will comprise loan repayments, payments to the firm owners, and asset acquisitions, in addition to ordinary operational costs. The closing cash balance is the amount at the end of each month that becomes the starting cash balance for the following month.

Understanding your cash flow, which is all about the timing of cash flow, is critical to scaling your business. To make a cash flow prediction, you might utilise a forecasting template.

Even though the economy is unclear, you can still employ best practice accounting principles to plan for 2021.

Using strong software to track all of your sales and expenses, as well as generate reports, is really beneficial. Supporting a skilled bookkeeper to remain on top of evolving rules, financial planning, and accounting cleanliness is also a good idea. Here’s to a fantastic fiscal year in 2020-2021!

Expand Your Company

Does your company have a track record of sustained growth and improved profits? Is your company actively working to improve your and your family’s lifestyle?

A successful firm accomplishes exactly that: it gives its owners the time and money they need to realise their lifestyle goals.

Many businesses, unfortunately, and unnecessarily, are a burden to their owners, providing little in the way of money, job satisfaction, and a good work-life balance.

Debts that are spiralling out of control, a bad return on investment, unrealistic working hours, and an overworked owner are all signs that a company needs help.

What is there to lose?

A firm that is underperforming! If you want to:

  • Create a business that will run smoothly even if you are not present.
  • Boost your net profit.
  • Within five years, you should be able to retire.
  • AAP can assist you in achieving a work/life balance in your design.

Improving profitability & cash flow

Many business owners cast their nets too wide when looking for consumers, wasting a lot of time and money in the process. Many business owners are offering goods and services that aren’t pulling their financial weight.

Many business owners have inefficient accounts receivable and payable processes that stifle cash flow. We could go on and on…

When it comes to evaluating profitability and performance, only an objective, experienced professional knows what to look for.

Top 10 Business Growth Ideas

Many business owners cast their nets too wide when looking for consumers, wasting a lot of time and money. Many business owners are selling items and services that aren’t bringing in enough money.

Many business owners have sloppy accounts receivable and payable procedures that stifle cash flow. We could keep going…

1. Belief in Yourself:

When it comes to evaluating profitability and performance, only an objective, experienced professional knows what they’re looking at.

2. Setting Realistic Goals:

Goals are essential for achieving growth. There is no growth-producing force if you don’t have a vision or objective for your company’s future. You can only attain growth milestones if you dream big, no matter where your firm is now. Setting small, realistic, and achievable goals is recommended. Small business accomplishments lead to massive business growth.

3. Set Your Priorities:

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Priorities shift with time. Emerging market changes necessitate a rethinking of objectives. It’s likely that some product lines that were once profitable are now losing money or vice versa. The study of strategic business units must be done on a regular basis in order to define priorities. This is quite beneficial in terms of resource allocation.

4. Apply Market Growth Strategies:

For long-term success, continuous improvement is required. It’s feasible that achieving break-even will necessitate a paradigm shift. Adapting and implementing growth strategies in accordance with market conditions can be a critical growth component. These are the strategies:

Diversification:

Producing a new product or introducing a related product line of an existing product to enter a new market.

Product development:

Producing or distributing a new product with additional features. Design, formula, or simple presentation can all benefit from innovation and adaptation.

Market penetration:

Improving sales to gain more market share in a similar business. This is primarily accomplished by lowering the selling price and providing special discounts and promotions.

Market development:

Current items are being targeted to new market segments. Providing luxury cars on easy instalments, for example, converts non-buyers into potential customers. A small tweak in terms and conditions can bring in more customers.

5. Introduce Referral Program:

Money has proven to be an effective motivator. When sales aren’t meeting expectations, consider implementing a commission-based policy. When you offer a profitable incentive, employees will work hard. Other incentives or prizes can also help to rekindle a desire to work.

6. No Compromise on Quality:

Never, ever, ever, ever, EVER, EVER, EVER, EVER, Customers who are dissatisfied with your product will form a chain of customers who will boycott your product. Compromise on quality is just not an option when it comes to acquiring and retaining customers.

7. Gradual Growth:

Grow slowly but wisely at all times. Taking out a loan to introduce massive products into the market and then worrying about recovery is not a prudent strategy. Attempt to determine product demand, as well as the accounts payable and receivable periods. To keep the system running, a balance must be maintained.

8. Winning Customer Loyalty:

The king is the customer. When the market is flooded with comparable products, you must be client pleasant in every manner imaginable. Customer retention is ensured as a result of this. A long-term asset is a delighted customer. Continue to improve client loyalty strategies by providing membership incentives and royalty programmes, one-on-one correspondence, and a simple return and replacement policy.

9. Digital Media Marketing:

Reaching customers has never been easier or more convenient than it is now, thanks to digital marketing. Improving and outsourcing digital marketing strategy can make a significant impact in terms of providing a successful and efficient online presence.

If you don’t have an in-house digital marketing staff, you won’t be able to handle all of your internet marketing efforts. By giving the top internet marketing services, experts will undoubtedly assist in maximising sales.

10. Expert Consult:

A professional opinion can make a big impact. You might desire to grow, but you don’t know where to start. Alterf Service is the heart of top-rated guidance, offering a wide range of business consulting services.

5 Bookkeeping Tips for Small Businesses

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Whether you’re a solo trader, a company, a partnership, or a trust, keeping proper financial records is essential for running a business. You’ll be able to quickly handle your invoicing, cash-to-cash cycle, deposits, credit, and any of the other plethora of daily finances your business engages in with competent, up-to-date bookkeeping. Keeping your finances in order is critical to your company’s growth and success.

Non-business owners who know what they’re doing make it a point to maintain track of their finances on a daily basis. Costs and stress are reduced as a result. When filing a small business tax return, keeping up-to-date financial documents is beneficial. Here are a few pointers from us if you wish to take responsibility of your company’s bookkeeping:

1. Separate Business and Personal Finances

Some business entrepreneurs combine their personal and professional finances. If you’re running a business, you’ll need to register a separate business bank account to keep track of your financial transactions and improve your credit score.

2. Know Your Taxes

You may be familiar with the methods and documentation required if you do your own taxes. However, keep in mind that corporate taxes differ from personal income taxes in terms of the laws, restrictions, and claims you can make. A fundamental awareness of a business’s tax obligations is essential, so consult a professional tax return accountant to ensure you know exactly what you need to accomplish.

3. Prioritise Your Books

We recognise that as a new business owner, you already have a lot on your plate. However, you must prioritise your books in addition to running your business. Keep track of all your documents so you don’t run into any problems when it comes time to file your taxes.

4. Back Up All Financial Records

Ensure that all necessary papers utilised in your business’s day-to-day operations are stored and kept up to date. These records include bank and credit card statements, profit and loss statements, balance sheets, and receipts, to name a few. These might also assist you in establishing a solid and stable financial foundation for your company. Receipts can be saved digitally, eliminating the need to save paper receipts that fade and are difficult to store.

5. Perform a Quarterly Review

At the conclusion of each quarter, take the time to review your bookkeeping and accounting records. Observe any trends, such as rising or falling sales or a rise in the number of customers, and discuss them with your accountant. They can assist you in becoming more prepared for future capital requirements such as expansion and/or the purchase of new equipment.

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