How to start a Bookkeeping Business! | Brett Philips, CPA | Skillshare
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10 Lessons (2h 11m)
    • 1. Chapter 1 - Getting Started

      6:14
    • 2. Chapter 2 - Business Formation

      31:31
    • 3. Chapter 3 - Hardware & Software

      7:42
    • 4. Chapter 4 - Training

      16:24
    • 5. Chapter 5 - Marketing

      17:22
    • 6. Chapter 6 - Advertising

      11:05
    • 7. Chapter 7 - First Client Meeting

      20:18
    • 8. Chapter 8 - Let's talk Money

      9:26
    • 9. Chapter 9 - Deliverable

      6:46
    • 10. Chapter 10 - It's a Wrap

      3:57
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Thinking about starting a bookkeeping business? Bookkeepers are always in demand, and if you are good with numbers and organizing financial information, this might just be the right business for you. If you want the freedom and rewards that come with building something solid and scalable, then join us in this fun and informational course. 

Meet Your Teacher

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Brett Philips, CPA

Master your side hustle, advance your ca

Teacher

Master your side hustle, advance your career, and earn more money.

 

If you’re an aspiring entrepreneur looking to break into a new field, or a current entrepreneur looking to advance your career and increase your compensation, you’re in the right place.

 

My name is Brett Philips, I’m a CPA and an entrepreneur with a love for teaching.

 

Throughout my career as a business consultant and tax professional, I’ve worked with thousands of successful entrepreneurs and business executives in all different industries. I’ve had the opportunity to work with some of the brightest minds and have spent over a decade working with C-level executives or Fortune 500 companies, owners of privately held busin... See full profile

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Transcripts

1. Chapter 1 - Getting Started: Hey, guys, Welcome. My name is Brett Phillips, and I'm the founder of the Profitable Keeper. Through this course, you will discover how to start and grow a profitable, sustainable bookkeeping business. By the end of this course, you have the tools necessary to organize and operate your own business. I'll teach you how to attract and more importantly, keep good. Clients will start with how to form your business that will move on to the tools needed to operate your business, then had a market and sell prospective clients and finally had an invoice and get paid. It's gonna be a fun and rewarding journey. Let's get started. So congratulations on taking the first step into becoming an entrepreneur. He had selected a great industry to be in, and I believe you'll find that's a very rewarding career. Have been in the accounting industry for 15 years, and I own and operate my own successful accounting firm here in Dallas, where we easily make over $100 an hour providing bookkeeping services. I know that if you follow these steps and use, the resource is provided, you too, will be up and running in just a matter of days before we get started. Let me just remind you of why bookie being it's such a great profession. Here are the top five reasons why I believe Bookie Bean is the best profession profitable. Did you know that? According to Forbes, entrepreneur and ink magazines, that bookie, being an accounting services is the most profitable business market in the US? So whether you want to earn a little side income or starting, grow a large, profitable book, even practice, I can assure you that you have chosen a great profession. You can easily earn to $100 an hour by following these steps included in this course, I'll show you step by step had a price of potential new Klein to maximize the profitability and the value that you're providing to your clients demand. Right now, the demand for quality bookkeepers has never been higher. Economy is strong and people are starting new businesses left and right. Every new business needs a bookkeeper to keep their financial records in order. Business owners know how important it is to have updated and accurate financials. Banks often required updated financials to stay in compliance with loan confidence. Additionally, every business needs a minimum an annual profit and loss statement to file their tax return . In this course, we will show you how to market to these clients and show you the value that you're bringing to these business owners. Low start up costs Bookkeeping allows you to work from home. Keeping your initial start up costs very low. You could easily get started with just a couple $1000 for technology training and software expense. There are very few businesses where you can start with minimum startup costs and allow you to start making money on day one inside perspective. What I love most about booking a profession is that you get to see what makes businesses profitable from the inside. Ever wonder how much your attorney makes each year, or if your local ice cream shop is profitable as a bookkeeper, you'll get to see what makes these businesses tick from the inside, and you could often take these lessons and use them to help your own business. If you're interested in business and joy working with numbers, you are going to love this profession flexible. You can work from home coffee shop, beachside pool side or from a traditional office space. Bookkeeping provides you with the flexibility to work when you want with whom you want and where you want. There are not many professions that allow you to set your own hours and work in your pajamas. I often kick off the day working remotely from a Starbucks that I had home for a few hours to make some calls or go to a meeting with a prospective client. I like to pick the kids up from school around three o'clock and the rest of the afternoon. I spend time with family. Sometimes I'll jump back on a night, knock out some additional work. The point is, the work can be done at your convenience. You can prioritise what is important and set meetings, toe work around your schedule and your activities. So that's my top five. I could list off another 20 reasons why bookkeeping is a great profession. But let's move on to what motivates you. What is your why everyone has something that drives them inner drive that pushes them to get up in the morning and strive to be successful. This is called your why you're wise. The reason you're watching this video Right now, it may be your Children a desire to be respected by your peers or purely a financial drive . It's important to understand what your currency, what makes you push yourself beyond your comfort level. That will certainly be times and situations as you grow your business, where you're put in an uncomfortable position. You'll sit down with owners of successful businesses and need to sell yourself and your ability to complete their financials in a timely and professional manner. This could be an intimidating situation. If you know your why, you can reach down and get through those hard situations. So pause this video, take a minute and write down. What's your why you can use this when you run into a hard patch or need some extra motivation. So let's take massive action. Push yourself beyond the levels you thought attainable. You can do this. Follow the steps provided use the templates and checklists included in the course. You can do this, but it's gonna take some effort. Let's take massive action today to achieve your goals for tomorrow. Here's one of my favorite quotes. A goal without a plan is just a wish. Don't just wish take action today. Make your dreams come true. Let's do this 2. Chapter 2 - Business Formation: All right, guys, here we go. This chapter, we're gonna focus on business formation. This includes selecting a business name, formation of your entity, creating a business bank account and just a couple of their housekeeping items to consider , like e and O insurance, which is errors and omissions, insurance and legal representation. Let's get started. First off, let's get your business a name you want a name that's professional tells people that your legitimate business, this is gonna be the first impression of your business. So let's pick something very professional if they find you online or through Social Media Channel, you don't want to stand out for the wrong reason. I'm sure this is probably one of the first things you thought of when you decided to start your own business. When I started my first book keeping Side Hustle years ago, I went through about 10 different business names. I wasn't sure if any of them would stand the test of time. So if you've already have a name picked out or if you haven't given it much thought, let's run through some of the do's and don't when naming your business. Let's start by going through some of the do's when picking a name. First, you want to be clear and professional in your name. Be clear that your professional bookie been firm. But good example would be Smith Bookkeeping and Accounting Services LLC, including bookkeeping or accounting services. In the name is a great idea. Unless people know what you do right off the bat and stands out as professional company. The next two is to do your due diligence check and make sure your new business name is original to you. Start with a simple Google search, then do a trademark surge and check with Secretary of State in your state of operations to see if your name is available. Also, you want check and see if the U. R L is available. This is gonna be where your domain is. Your www dot ah Smith Bookkeeping and Accounting Services LLC dot com. Um, so once you've decided on a name, your U. R l is gonna be something you're gonna want to purchase immediately. The next two is to use your last name. This is typically done with CP A firms and large law firms, because their state boards boards don't allow them to advertise in their name. Um, but it's it's less it. Release lets the customers feel like you're an important person in your company. So if your company's firm name is McBride and Company Accounting Services, when you meet with potential client, you know they want to meet with McBride, they want to meet with the leader of the company, so this isn't required, but it's typically a good idea, just so it gives you some some professionalism right off the bat. The next do is to include your city name. An example would be San Francisco accounting services if you want to. If you if you wanted to stay local in your local area, this may be a good idea. It can be limiting to, ah, geographical areas. So if you're in a small town, this may not be a may not be the way to go. But if you're in a large town like Dallas, Denver, New York, um, there's plenty of business in those in those local cities to support another local accounting and bookkeeping firm. The next do would be to include an industry, so I'm kind of mixed feelings about this. This is also a don't. So, um, let's let's take this with a grain of salt. But, you know, if you wanted to focus on a specific niche, it would be a good idea to Klute. Includeds in your name. Um, there's a c p A name named Laura Mike Worth in North Carolina, and she's known as the beer C p. A. She focuses exclusively on craft breweries. It's a good way to stand out to a specific industry if that's something you're really wanting to focus on specifically, Um, but it can also, you know, limit your client pool so he don't want to. You want to start off to specifically? The next do is to make sure your name is easy to spell. So if you have a difficult last name, it's difficult to spell. You know, you may want to consider a different strategy, like like using your city name or or your industry. Uh, finally, it's always a good idea to get feedback from your friends and family. So run your name by a few your friends and, you know, asked for their honest feedback and us honest opinion. So not only is this a good idea to get feedback on your name, but it gives you a chance to start telling people about your new business. You want to get the word out as soon as possible, so we'll talk all about that in Chapter six and advertising. So it's jump over to the doughnuts. So, um, these many of these may seem obvious, but it's surprising how many companies I see out there with names that just give off less than professional impression. So first, you don't wanna have a QC name like like Buttercup bookkeeping. It's gonna limit the number of business owners. So even take a meeting with you because it gives the impression that you don't take your business serious. You know, they're trusting you there. You're dealing with their personal banking information on their financial information. They don't want to turn this over to someone you know, with this silly name that doesn't take their business. Siri's so so don't don't use a silly name. The next is gonna be Don't be too specific to a certain industry, you know, like we just talked about with the beer. C p A. Um you know, you want to make do your research and make sure your niche is large enough to sustain your book, even practice. Um, you know, it really depends on how big you want to grow. So if you're okay keeping ah, you know, 56 Client C P A. For actives are bookkeeping practice. That's fine, but But you just want to make sure that that the number of clientele can sustain your business. You know, there's there's only there's only so many breweries out there for the beer C p A. To take on, you know. But on the flip side, you know, some niches are large enough to definitely sustain a business. In In Dallas, where I live, there's a local firm who all they deal with is is dental practices exclusively. So they have over over 100 professionals. It's a It's a very large large book. Even practice. Um, you know, it could go either way. Just do your homework, do your research. Make sure that there's enough business out there to sustain your practice. The next don't is you don't want to use the name of another firm. You know, this seems it seems obvious, but do your research. You know, there's a lot of Smith's out there, there's a it. There's ah, you know, a lot of you with the same last name. So if you use your last name, just want to make sure that that names are not already taken. There's not already a practice, um, in your area using that name. So so again, Do your research. Um, you know, you can't name your firm Price Waterhouse or for KPMG bookkeeping, those names air it seems we're taking and they're heavily trademarks of um so just you again do your research and the last don't it's gonna be Don't be. Don't be too original. Don't Don't Don't get too goofy with your name. You keep it professional. Keep it easy to remember And, um and, you know, that'll that'll go a long way. So So just make it Just make make sure your name is clear and memorable. And remember, the no, this is going to your if your firm's name for a long time, so you can grow your practice. You can hire more employees, you picture down the road what this firm is gonna look like. And, um, and, you know, make sure that the name you're picking today is gonna is going to, um, sustained the test of time, and it's gonna be a good name going forward. Ah, name is isn't something you could easily change. So so let's make sure it's a keeper. All right, Next next chapter is going to ah, building your firm. All right, guys. Now we got a great name picked out. Now let's jump in and take a look at the entity type that you're gonna want to set up to structure your new book. Even practice. There are quite a few options out there. I've narrowed it down to three. That I think would be the best way to structure your firm. Let's take a look. All right, so let's take a look at thes three different type of any structures first. So these air all what we consider flow through business entities. So all the tax, the net income of your business is going to be reported on your personal tax return and that the tax is going to be paid by you personally. The business itself does not pay any federal income tax. So the 1st 3 entities types we're gonna look at is going to use a sole proprietorship in L L C and An S Corp. So these get progressively more complicated. So So proprietorship is going to be the most basic form of business entities. If you don't do anything, if you don't set up anything, you know, file any paperwork with state, you don't set up any type of entity you're going to default as a sole proprietorship. So for federal income tax purposes, you're gonna be, ah, schedule. See all the income business activities going to report on your schedule C. There's no other partners. You're just you own it 100%. There's no legal liability protection, which means that if you were to get sued, they could potentially go after your personal assets. It's not. It's not capped at that business entity level. So your personal assets could potentially be, ah, be be subject to Teoh litigation exposure. Um, the benefit is it super easy to set up? You don't to do anything. You just start to a business and your sole proprietor. Um, there's no additional tax reporting requirements. You don't have to file annually with the state. Typically, um, depending on which state of operations that you're working in um one of the downside of the sole proprietorship is it doesn't doesn't look as professional as an LLC or a Ness Corp. So, um, if you don't have that, those numbers, those letters after after your name, you know, it just doesn't doesn't appears professional. So for the small filing fee of setting up a jealousy, I think there's a lot of a lot of benefits to it. So let's take a look at that one next. And L l C is gonna be a very basic entity structure, especially for federal income tax purposes. If you own it 100% it's treated as disregarded L C. It's almost trade like a sole proprietorship on your individual tax return. It also files on a schedule C on your individual tax return. And again all the income flustered you personally. The the deep, biggest advantage of an LLC is going to be the limited liability protection. So, um, if the entity is is sued for any reason and you lose that litigation and someone is damaged , um, you know they can't go after your personal assets. Typically, if if if you treat the LLC properly and all the activities is captured in the Yellow Sea. Um, you know, more than likely you'd have, you know, insurance, Which which would cover that, Uh, but worst case scenario, the LoC is bankrupt, and and, you know, your your personal assets are still safe. Like I said, it's disregard for federal income tax purposes. It doesn't file a separate tax return unless you have a state filing, But for federal tax purposes is treated as a disregarded density. Um, some of the cons are you know, it it does cost some money to set up, and I will see, um, typically, a few $100 in whichever state your filing in and then you know, if you choose to have an attorney right up on operating agreement, you know, that would cost a little money as well. Um, but like I said it, it's it's much more professional. It's definitely the way to go. Um, you know, I would highly recommend you set it up setting up in loc, especially at the beginning. And, um, you know, once you become very profitable, then it typically makes sense to roll that business into an s corporation, which, um, you could do just it's simply of federal election. So you know, you have to restructure the entity. It's just attacks. Election at the LoC makes so typically what once the businesses is profitable and you're making over $50,000 a year in taxable income typically makes sense to to then roll into an s corporation. So it s corporations gonna be a little more, um ah, a little more work a little more. It's gonna cost you a little more to to to operate. But on the same note it it also can save you quite a bit of money in self employment tax. So the benefit of the S corporation is you then become an employee of the company to pay yourself. Reasonable compensation is determined by the IRS. Um, but any money that you make in excess of that compensation is that not set it to self employment tax. So if the company you know, nets $100,000 you pay yourself a $50,000 salary, that $50,000 salary is set it to self employment tax. But the 50,000 in addition to that is not so. Now you want to talk with your professional team your your C p a or or your attorney and And make sure that you've considered the reasonable compensation rules. And make sure you're filing everything properly. You not highly if you know if you're if you're gonna be doing payroll and you should be fairly comfortable with with all the different filing requirements. But, um, you know some of the benefits of an escort you to get that look limited liability protection. What you do is an LLC, so that rolls over to the escort as well. Um, you're you're required to file a separate tax return of business tax returns of form 11 20 s. Um, and you would get a schedule K one, which would then be reported on your personal tax returns. So it's still a flow through entity. It still ends up paying the taxes your personal level. Uh, but you do save quite a bit on self employment tax of um yeah, another. A few other things to consider is used to pay yourself wages to pay yourself reasonable compensation. Uh, the iris isn't doesn't give great guidelines under what reasonable compensation is because each industry is different. Each professions different each each geographical areas different. So, you know, if your California ah, typical wage may be much higher than in then in Tennessee, just it's hard to talk for the IRS to come out with with black and white rules on on what's reasonable compensation. Um, so like I said, another big benefit is that it saves on self employment taxes. Um, they're a little more expensive to operate because you to file annual S Corp return and you have to keep up with payroll so that could that could cost you maybe 1000 $1500 professional fees a years. So it's It's quite a bit more expensive, but you know, you might. You might save 5 $10,000 in self employment tax. So So it may be worth it again. You would. You would keep the LoC designation. So it's still it appears for a professional to to outside parties. So a couple things to consider it. Typically these business, any structures kind of go in this direction. So you start office a sole proprietorship. Once you start to bring in money, then you roll into an LLC, and it was become really profitable. Didn't you roll into an s corporation, so they kind of progressively get more complicated and progressively go go up in status as as your business grows. So that's That's the That's the direction you typically want to take. So there's two other entity types that you should at least be aware of. Um, and just know that exist in some of the president cons of each. The 1st 1 is going to be a partnerships of If there's more than one owner, even in L. I'll see if there's more than one owner, it'll default to a partnership. Um, and you know, you wanna have an operating agreement written up and just make sure that everything is spelled out very clearly. So you know, partnerships can be a little more difficult to maintain between the two partners. You know, there's different ideas different, different ways. People wanna want to take the company, um, so they can. They can be difficult to operate, but at the same time, you know, it's nice to have someone to lean on to ask questions to to to you know, if one person is really good at marketing and one person's really good operations, you know, sometimes it makes sense to partner up with with another person to to cover some of of your weaknesses and to have the other person you know to cover their weaknesses. So ah, partnership is just a typically Justin loc with more than one owner, and everything is allocated based upon that partnership agreement. So you still receive the limited liability protection coverage. It's still flow through entity you. So you still get a schedule K one and, uh, it files what's known as a Form 10 65 a partnership tax return. And then your allocated share of income and expenses is then reported on your schedule K one, which is then reported on your personal tax return. Um, it's going to require most likely a state tax filing whichever state you operated. Um, and it has cost a little more more money to set up because you needed and definitely an operating agreement. Um, and you have to file a separate tax return annually and again, this this would would file as an LLC, so it's still it would appear very professional to outside parties as well. The last enemy structure we talk about is gonna be the C corporation, so You see, corporations haven't been very popular among small businesses, um, for a long time because of the double taxation. So what? What I mean by double taxation is a C Corp pays federal income tax on the net income of the business and that it pays dividends to the shareholders. And then that's then tax the second time at your individual level, as as dividend income. So that's where that's where we get that double taxation from so that that income would be taxed both of the corporate level and at the individual level. Um, you know this entity structure, it's mainly used by larger companies or companies that are wanting to become, you know, public or take on some kind of public debt. Um, you know, they're very do. Typically, much more come complex than a a small, small book you practice would need. Um, you know, they they do offer some benefits. They offer the same legal liability. Protection is now. We'll see. Um, you know, getting the report require you to pay yourself wages and, um, they would require a separate tax filing 11. 20 which is the corporate tax filing for density. Um, here in 2019 and 2018. The tax law changed and created a flat tax for C. Corporations had 21% tax rates of, um, you know, typically, they're a little more expensive. You know, you pay a little bit higher tax rate than you would your effective tax rate at at an NC level. So as I would still remain a recommend the last page, we start off it as its sole proprietor and l c and then roll into an escrow pearly Think that's the best. The best entity structure for these small businesses. Um, but again, you know, talk with your professional team. I'm not giving and it legal advice in this course, I'm non attorneys. So this is this is something you would want to run by your c p a and and your your legal team cause you know, everyone's everyone's a little bit different. Everyone's got different stuff going on. Um, so what? What fits? One person may not fit the other. So meet with your team and and pick a picket. Any structure that works best for you. All right, guys, we got a name picked out. We got a business entity picked out. Now let's take a look at our business banking. Alright, guys. So when setting up your business checking account were credit card or both, Um, it's always important just to keep your personal activity in your business activity separate. Not only is it is it easier as you know, for counting purposes, you know, you can easily go in, reconcile and and track all your all your business and expenses. Um, you know, it really protects that limited liability protection. Um, oven oven LLC. So he definitely do not want to co mingle your funds your personal funds with your business Chicken funds. You can still transfer money back and forth if you're you know, if the business needs money or if, if it's there has has money and you're gonna transfer some funds out, you can always make distributions. That's fine, but you just wanna make sure that you that you that you keep your business and your personal accounts separate. There's a lot of great free checking business checking accounts available through, you know, some of the Net national banks and some of the local credit unions, but I would definitely recommend going into the, uh, the bank and asked to speak of the branch manager. You know, let him know what you're doing. Tell him. Hey, I'm setting up a new new book. Even practiced. I'm really excited about it. And, you know, if you have any other small clients that are coming in there starting new businesses, I'd love to talk to him. You never know where your next Ah, next referrals going to come from. So I always tell people about your business. Always get out. It's always a good idea to make sure you get in front of people and just just let him know you know what you're doing and tell him you're growing. You're looking to bring on new clients. Uh, you know, people are always really eager, and then, you know, they want to help you. They want they want to see your business grow. So So make sure you get in front of, you know, a good banker and let him know what's going on. Um, and you know, you know, bankers, they love to deal with bookkeepers as well, because, you know, you're always in front of, you know, small businesses and small businesses are always needing loans and you know they want those . They want that activity. They want those those loans. So it's It's a kind of a win win situation relationship between you and the bank. So, um, definitely make sure just just make sure you set up the business Chicken. You can typically just need your federal yaya number. Um, some of your organisational documents from setting up the business entity of the state, and that's pretty much all you need to set it up and then just make sure you keep that minimum, um, balance. So you know you can you avoid any bank fees? Um, that's it. We'll keep it simple. So another important step in setting up your bank accounts is your merchant services. So if you're not familiar with merchant services, thes air the services that allow your business to accept credit cards or or bank debit cards. Um, nowadays, there so many new options to receive payments. But I would recommend automating your billing and require your customers to keep a valid credit card on file and have them authorize you to charge this card on a regular bases, depending on the services you're performing. So, for example, if I'm doing monthly accounting for a client, and we agree on a $500 a month charge. I want them to authorize me to process this payment, say, on the on the 15th of each month, once that once the works completed. Um, so this will just one sure that I get paid timely, and it keeps me from having to waste time chasing down old invoices. So there are, ah, number of, um, you know, great credit card processing companies out there. Um, let's go ahead and take a look at a couple. Um, Now, um, you know, there's square papal quickbooks. You know, these are these are some of the more popular payment processing, um, cos merchant services. But, you know, I would always recommend going with something that you're going to be working with all the time. So, you know, it's always a good, good idea to use the QuickBooks merchant services. Um, it's about the same prices. It's all the other ones. They're all they're all fairly competitive. Um, but I like like sitting the clients that that invoice through quickbooks, you know, it comes through in an email. They can click on it, pay it right away. Or, um, you're you know, it sends them an automatic receipt if we have them set up on on auto pay. Um, if you look in the course material, I've created a credit card authorization form which we use using our for our firm. Um, so I'd recommend downloading that, you know, customizing it for your business. Put in your information in there, and then each time you go out and pick up a new client just won't include this in their packet and have them provide that credit card information. And you can just go ahead and make sure that that payments automated, um, it's is easy way to get paid. And it's it's a really real time saver. So if you do that up front, just get get the client used to it, Um, most of them most one don't have a problem with it at all, So oh, definitely definitely recommend that next section. Let's take a look at insurance. Um, for professional bookkeepers, it's called E and O or Errors and omissions insurance. Um, you know, this covers mistakes or mishandling of financial records that you or your staff, um, may make, um you know, or or proof Beep Received to have made, um, you know, which causes damages to your client. The the key here to remember is that the problem is not if you actually make errors, but whether someone accuses you of doing so, Um, either way, you need to defend yourself legally. Even if you found 100% innocent, it's going to cost you some fees. So it's good to have some protection with the insurance. Um, sometimes you know when you're when you're contacted by a business owner looking for a freelance bookkeeper for the first time, where if they've had a bad experience with another bookkeeper in the past, you may be asked if if you have insurance and if you're carrying a policy so by simply having minimum coverage, you'll appear more professional and you'll look like a more reliable company. So carrying professional liability insurance helps you set you apart from freelancers. We're just trying to create part time contract work for themselves on the side, and, um, you know, makes you look like a more legitimate, trustworthy professional business. Um, the bookkeeper Liability insurance. It's pretty reasonably priced. Um, you can find policies started around $400 a year for basic coverage. Um, these air typically claims made policies. Um, it will have limits on on the maximum of cover proclaim or, you know, per policy, period. Um, so you just wanna just wanna make sure you you talk to an insurance professional and and make sure that they have a policy that fits your needs. Um, you know, everyone will be different. You know, if you're doing 10 clients or if you're doing to clients 400 clients, you know, the amount of insurance that you carry, um, would be different. So three good news is your insurance agent is working with small businesses all day. You know who could potentially be new clients for you. So you use that opportunity to interview a few agents and tell them about your business. Ask them if they have a bookkeeper or you know, someone that they recommend to their clients. And if not, you know, ask them if you could be that person. You never know where your next referrals going to come from. So you know anybody that that works with small businesses all the time is always a great referral source. Sometimes it sometimes it comes up and, you know, they're They're always happy to refer somebody or toe have, you know, a good resource to refer people to some? Um, like I said, um, everyone's a little bit different. So talk to an insurance agent and, um, and make sure you get covered. So that was Ah, that was a lot of material we just went through. You had to pick your business name how to set up the entity. Um, and then you know all the different, um, business bank accounts that you need to set up merchant services. Um, and some and some, you know, insurance. So quite a bit of information. This chapter. Make sure you go back and look at it machine. Look at the handouts included in the in the course. Um, is this is this is kind of all the all the first steps is structuring your businesses All the things you're gonna do, you know, before you get that first client in the door. So So take a look at all this. This is going to be kind of a step one of setting up your book, even practice. And, um, let's move on to small material 3. Chapter 3 - Hardware & Software: all right, gang. So you've looked through getting your business set up properly with the right energy structure, business, bank accounts, merchant services and insurance. Now let's take a look at the hardware and software needed to complete the day to day work in your new in your new book. Keeping practice. Um, let's start with hardware. So you know, I would always recommend getting a laptop over desktop. If you know if you really have a desktop, you'll be working from home. That's that's totally fine. That will. That will do the job. But, you know, sometimes it's nice to have your laptop with you kids. You need to go to a client's office or or, you know, if you want to work from a coffee shop and get out of the house for the day and or go to a library hours someplace quiet to work. Um, laptops tend to be tend to be a little more, um, you know, user friendly and and, um, you know, mobile Self. Um, I would recommend a laptop, but you can get you could get a basic laptop that could do everything that you need to do for this business. For just just a few $100 if you If you shop around, um, printers and scanners, so you definitely want like it all in one printer, scanner, fax. Um, you know, sometimes the clientele will send you over some paper documents. You need to scan them in. You keep everything electronically. Um, but, you know, it's always a good idea. Just be able to have, like, an all in one that just does everything. Um, we used Bree's brother printers and on our office, and they seem to work, work pretty well, and they're they're fairly inexpensive to a couple $100. Um, you know, a keyboard mouse on, you know, maybe a second monitor. You know, all these just help increase productivity. Um, you know, I've gone to a couple county firms lately. Um, and and there's still a lot of people was working off a single monitor. I mean, especially in accounting. It's so much easier. It's so much more productive to have a second monitor. Or you can have you know, your quickbooks up on on one screen, and you can have the bank statements of on the other. And you can just just taken time. You know, fly through stuff. It just just makes things so much easier, especially with the with the detailed bank information that that we work with. So oh, definitely recommend picking up a 2nd 2nd monitor their relatively inexpensive $100. And, uh, and that's about that's about all you need for hardware. Um, you know, I would definitely get a nice portfolio Or or, you know, some kind of mole skin type type book that you can, um, you know, used to take two meeting so you can take down some notes and, you know, you know, just just appear professional. Um, and that's always a good idea. I was used to keep one of those in my briefcase. Just whenever I Whenever I go me with a new client, I just bring it. Just bring out the moleskin notebook and check and scratched on some notes. Um, I think the clients, really they really like that you're attentive to in that meeting and and and, um, you know, it's always a good idea. So how realistic it look at software? Um, you know, for QuickBooks, there's two different versions. So there's with books desktop, and then QuickBooks online um, you know, you definitely want to get both versions. I would just pick up the latest version of, um, QuickBooks desktop and make sure you get the accountants version. This allows you to do to do a few more additional operations in quickbooks that you can't do in in some of the other versions. Um, and you know it. It definitely makes makes life easier. So I would pick up the accounts version, um, on the desktop and then for QuickBooks online, you can go ahead, set up a professional bookkeeper account. It's a free account. And, um, you could just easily, um, it just have your email link to that account. And then whenever you get a new client on QuickBooks online, they can add a second user. But just type in your email, and then it just It just adds on to your to your bookkeeper account. So I would definitely set up a QuickBooks online account as well. There are a few other accounting software is like fresh books. Uh, zero. Um, you know, our firm. We decided when we were not going to to work with those other Softwares at this time. Just just because It's so difficult to to master once off where, um, you know, it's it's really difficult to go into some of these other newer Softwares and trying to run , run reports and and reconcile and try to do all the things that you really know how to do in QuickBooks. It just takes, you know, five times as long to try to do it in a new software. So we're currently, um, not using any other Softwares but QuickBooks. But, you know, there are some accounting firms out there that specialize in zero are specializing fresh books. And, um, you know, that's that's what they choose to run with. I think it definitely limits your clientele as QuickBooks is definitely the the biggest, you know, software provider for for a county providers out there. So QuickBooks is definitely number one. Um, so there software's you're gonna want you No one, you know, basic Microsoft package. So excel and word and and you know, your email function and outlook. So, um, you definitely want the Microsoft package. Last people will send you excel files all the time, or are were documents that you want to be ableto to edit those and send those back. Um, now there's a lot of you go to the cloud for file preservation. So Dropbox has been really great service, and there's there's quite a few out there. So, um, you know, you don't you don't have to use dropbox, but it's it's, you know, a great cloud based service. It's easy to add files back and forth. Everything's encrypted. Um, so it's very safe, and you know, you can both access files, and you can easily keep everything set up. Once that Dropbox gets pretty full, you probably have to add the business dropbox. But it's It's like 20 bucks a month. It's It's pretty expensive, some. So I would start, you know, with the existing said, If you have, and then you can just add additional hardware, different additional software later on. Um, you just trying to bootstrap it and just keep costs as low as possible until you start getting getting that revenue rolling in. So, um, you know, I wouldn't I wouldn't go crazy on this until until you have some clients in the works and you need to need to actually use it. So, um, that's it for hardware and software is pretty, fairly straightforward and fairly inexpensive. Um, let's go ahead and jump into the next chapter 4. Chapter 4 - Training: all right, gang were plowing through the material. So we've who set up our entity. We've examined the different legal structures. We know what payments. You know, we don't accept payments, and we know what equipment and software we need to buy to get started. So So now let's let's take a look at the technical skills needed to be a good bookkeeper. So in this chapter, we're gonna take a look at what you should know. Before picking up your first client, you should have a basic understanding of these basic fundamental accounting principles and bookkeeping functions. Um, well, we'll go over some of the different resource is you can use to familiarize yourself with QuickBooks and different accounting. Um, functions and software, Um or if you know, if your things an experienced bookkeeper, what skills you you should sharpen up on and it just be familiar with before for launching into your own business. So know what you need to know, But but don't over study or or over train. In most cases, you'll be doing all the detailed work from the comfort of your own home. So you can always look up, Um, how to do a certain task and QuickBooks or whatever accounting software you're using. Um, the Internet's full of different resource is, and we'll go over Some of the best resource is to find answers to your technical questions a little later in this chapter. But the key is to really focus on what's important to the type of business or industry that you're gonna be focusing on. So you know, if you're going to focus on professional services, which is a great niche, um, attorneys, doctors, consultants, um, you know, you need to understand what's important to those types of businesses and how to provide that service. Those were those were pretty straightforward kind of cash basis businesses. Um, you know, where you just kind of recording income and categories in the expenses properly? You know, they don't have inventory and likely have a minimal amount of transactions with a fairly straightforward. So, you know, just focus on what would be important to that type of business. So maybe think of creating ah fake client and just kind of walking through the different processes that you would take two to create some financials for ah, business in that industry. Um, you know, there's If if you're gonna, you know, maybe focus on, like, manufacturing or more specific area, you know, you want to be just you won't be familiar with the different, um, you know, areas that that industry, um, may need many, you know, some more of expertise in, you know, like inventory or depreciation or multi state rules. It just depends on on on the industry. So So make sure you focus on, um, on the industry that you want to work in and just make sure you having a strong understanding of the other technical skills needed. So let's, let's actually take a look at some of the items that you should have a previous questions on any of these There's training. Resource is I'll show you a couple slides where you can find, you know, a lot of information on this kind of stuff. So, um, let's go ahead and take a look at these. And again. If you have any questions, there's plenty of resource is to get you, um, up and running in some of these areas. So let's start with number one. So understanding double entry bookkeeping. So for every debit, you know, there's gonna be an offsetting credit, Every journal entry, any debits and credits have to they have to match. Um, and that's just, you know, the basic fundamentals off bookie Penis, and you know that it's it's double entry. So there's there's two sides of every entry. So you need to understand this. You know, these basics of accounting and bookkeeping. So number two is gonna be the chart of accounts. So a complete listing, um, chart of accounts is a complete listing of every account in the general ledger for a company, so he could also be broken down into sub categories. There's everything from from your bank accounts, your asset accounts, um, you know, current non current to your your liabilities, um, and then equity and that income and expense accounts. So you a chart of accounts has every account listed. And, um, you know, each industry is gonna have a different, different looking chart of accounts. So surely have a basic understanding of the chart of accounts. Number three is me the pool push bank data. So, you know, knowing how to download bank information into the QuickBooks, how, in knowing how to link everything up, Um, and then you categorize all the expenses, which is, you know, the basic, you know, stuff that we do. So you have to know how to paddle pool that that data you don't want to be in putting all this stuff manually. So being able to pull the information from the bank accounts is very important. Number four is categorizing expenses. Eso just to know, you know where those expenses should go. So n A T and T expense used to go, you know, under your utilities or telephone, or, you know, whichever category that should go under. So, um, knowing how to categorise these expenses, uh, and then setting up your re occurring feeds as well is very important. So looking over five is reconcile ing bank and credit card activity. So, um, if you're not familiar with reconciliation, it's it's tying your bank, your your books back to your bank statements. So making sure that everything on that bank statement has been properly cat has been properly addressed and that your beginning balance in your any mounts tied to what's in the books. So you just make sure everything on that bank statement is been has been captured in your in your books, Alan Sheet and income statements. So you have to know the difference between what? A balance sheet account? An income statement. Accounts are and you know, when you one you're going to categorise expenses or or activity to the balance sheet or the income statement, you have to have Ah, no real strong understanding of that. A balance sheet is a snapshot of a point in time, while in income statement is is the is the total amount of income and expenses for a period of time. So, you know, an income statement may cover, you know, 1/4 or a month or or a year And then at the end of that year, your income statement is gonna roll up into equity is gonna close out. It's going to start all over it. Zero at the beginning of the next year. So have a good understanding that your balance, she continues on forever. Your income statement is just a period of time. The next one, number seven is payroll. Um, you know, my my friend, we don't do payroll. We outsource that to, you know, payroll companies. We just feel like it's it's a better use use of our time not to not to be doing payroll. Um, and it's it's so re occurring. It's, um it's It's very time consuming, so we chose not to do it. If you're really familiar and comfortable with peril and you want to it make make an offering to your practice, you know, there's certainly a lot of companies that do. Um, who we just feel like it's just it's just too time consuming for us. Um, but, you know, you do need to know the basic fundamentals of payroll, know how to reconcile it into the books. And then, um, you know, understanding those those payroll tax liabilities as well is very important. So the next one number eight is dead adjustments. So had a calculating record interest expense on loan amortization schedules. So, you know, most companies are gonna have some kind of debt. We re making payments on it, whether it's equipment, loans. If it was the original purchase loans, um, and and you know a lot of times the clause wanting to get statements for this, So unless you have access to their banks, where you can see the actual statements and and see the interest um, allocated on each payment you know you need You need to just appeal to run amortization schedules. You can go back and calculate the interest expense for each payment and make that make that adjustment to the books. Number nine is gonna be tax. So you want to know how the the financials tie back to the business tax returns? So if, um, if their c p. A is preparing the tax return, um, you know, you want to get a copy of that and make sure that if there any adjustments that C p A have made is thin reflected in the books as well, so that the books tie back in your retained earnings roles and in all your equity accounts roll over to the next year. Um, number 10 is going to the management reports. So, you know, I tell my guys all the time. It's so important that we send the clients, um, set of their financials after we complete the work and make sure that they're comfortable with that. They review it. And, um, you know that the cleanse appreciate the work that goes into these financials. We run what's called a management report We always put a statement at the bottom so that these aren't audited. Financials or viewed or compiled were not provided in the attestation work on these financials, but they are minute. They're meant for management use only. But we always providing a balance sheet, a profit loss. David and Stephen. A cash flows, just the basic financial statements. Then we make sure that we review those statements with the the owners or management and see if they have any questions. Just make sure that they're comfortable their financials on a monthly or quarterly basis. However, however, we're doing it. So those were kind of the top 10 items that I think everyone should be comfortable with. That you should really know. Um, if if any of those items you weren't sure about you know, check out these trading resource is there were about to go over a swell. So let's take a look at these. Training Resource is, um, in a little more detail. There is a listing with all the links back links to all these training. Resource is in this course to check the downloads and make sure that you take a look at that. The training resource is, um, like I said, there's links toe to all these. Resource is, we're about to go over. Um, but, you know, these air use the great resources and the the most of them are free. And they give you just the basic, um, you know, fundamentals off accounting and bookkeeping and what you really need to know before you pick up that first client. But, you know, like I said, a lot of this should be doing at home. You know, See, if you ever have any questions as you're going through the books, there's something tricks you up And, uh, you know, you need some technical expertise. You can always jump on these resource is at that time and, uh, and find the question, find the answer, the question you're looking for. So let's take it. Just a quick look at some of these resource is like I said, um, check that download. And, um, it's kind of the links to these as well. So the 1st 1 to be quickbooks, you know into it They've got a great training program, Um, and they've got tons of videos. Tons of resource is pdf's and things you can download and read over and, you know, it's just it's a great resource, you know, they want you to be as comfortable with their software as possible. Um, And then, you know you can do want you to refer to all your clients and make sure everyone's using it , so they really try to make a very user friendly software. So QuickBooks is gonna be the first resource? Um, YouTube is the second. So I go to YouTube a lot When I'm I get tripped up on something and and that maybe even me where you found us, um, is is you know, we try to put a lot of resource is out there as well. Um, YouTube's great. Like I said, um, you know, there's a lot of different versions of QuickBooks as well. So you just make sure that that you're looking for the right the right stuff on YouTube, and but it's it's a great resource. So number threes and we fit small business. Um, they've got a set of 39 training videos. It's a great place for beginners. Um, you know, they're short. They're quick, easy to understand videos, and, um, you know, I really I really like the videos rather than rather than going through and reading it because they're going to show you, you know, whereto whereto you just follow their mouths through through the D A software, and it's it's really much, much cleaner and in easy to follow. The next one's going to, QuickBooks explained. This is, ah, another great resource. They have a lot of videos, they go a little more in depth, and some of the other resource is so, you know, I really recommend this. If you're really wanted to get that back story of why you're doing something QuickBooks explain has some really good. That's a really good information out there as well. Next is going to you to me. So these are gonna be easy to be paid courses that you could take. So if you're brand new to to QuickBooks and book even, um, you to meal have great courses out there that are like, I'm gonna walk you right through exactly how to get the get the you know que vio fall from your client. Uh, Dalit work through it, you know, they'll take you through the whole process. So you know, if your brain you if you don't know if you don't know anything about bookkeeping, and that's gonna be a great resource for you. Accounting coach, Um, this is going to be a very good resource just for basic accounting term descriptions and explanations. So, you know, if you have a client that has an account description on their palace utopian al that you're not really sure of and you're not sure of the terminology accounting coaches. It is a great resource just to just to get some basic term descriptions on an investor. Pia, you know, it's kind of the same thing. It gives you explanations on terminology. It also provides some really good industry news. So I really, really, like invested, tedious well, and then accounting. Today it's going to the final resource. So this is, ah, industry news, and they also have some of the best practices on there. So it's also a great resource just to keep up with, you know, industry trends. Taxol changes accounting insides and then software changes while they're always updating a list of new Softwares. And and you know that as you know, the software's always changing, so it kind of today's it was a great resource to check out. I tried jump on their one, so we can kind of see what's going on. So it's It's those guys this So the next section before wrap up this chapter's coming certifications. So, um, certifications. You know, they're not required to start your practice, but it's always a good idea to be QuickBooks certified. Um, I think it brings a certain level of professionalism and credibility to your business. Um, certainly wouldn't postpone starting your practice until you are certified. But it's certainly something that you should do within the first year of business. Um, being a QuickBooks certified pro adviser, they add you to their list of pro advisors. So you may. You may get some work for Mitt. Um, it is, you know, it's not a bad idea. Um, and they have some additional training on their website. Um, and there is a test to become a QuickBooks pro adviser. It's it's It's not too difficult. Um, it's It's about a two hour long test, and I think you get like, 33 attempts to pass each section, so it's not. It's not too bad at all, but it's not about idea. How would definitely do it If you're gonna be using QuickBooks exclusively, I would certainly recommend becoming QuickBooks pro adviser. 5. Chapter 5 - Marketing: All right, guys, Welcome back. We're moving right through the material. And now, in chapter five, we're gonna take a look at marketing your new business sub. In this course, we're going to break up marketing advertising into two different chapters. So marketing refers to the material used in your advertising campaign while advertising is the execution of the marketing plan and is more client focused so you can get very creative and you're working material. But just just remember, you want to keep your marketing material very professional and focussed very tightly on the type of clientele that you're wanting to attract. So let's start with your businesses logo so you can spend a ton of money having a logo created by professional graphic designer or like we'd like to do. In this course. We're gonna show you how you can bootstrap it, and you create a logo for free so you can always go back and have a professional. Create a low before you if you desire, But from my experience, it's just it's really not necessary. So let's jump into a website called Can Va C. A n v a dot com, and I'll show you how to create a great free on attractive logo. Let's take a look. All right, so let's start by jumping into Canada dot com, c a n v a dot com and this is a designed website. Recreate all kinds of awesome marketing materials and different kinds of stuff. So if you take a look at these, there's posters, business cards, all kinds of different social media pose documents, personal stuff you can create. They got education, area and marketing. This is where we're gonna focus on the marketing materials. So let's take a look at the logo. You just create a new design and then select logo. Everything on the left here is gonna be kind of templates that you can use to creates your custom logo. So whatever you like, it doesn't you know, whatever. Whatever Um, template, you think is is good looking. You can select it and you can customize it. Um, let's goes just kind of go down, take a look at a couple of these and see if we can find when we like a lot of these aerial specific to certain industries. Searching certain markets like it was not bad. Let's take a look at this one. See you just click on it. It opens in this left turn. This this right window here, then you can just right right over it and customize it for your business. It's really that easy, So Miller Bookkeeping Advisory. A little soon now you can customize the font size kind of blow it up a little bit. Here go the way it looks a little bigger. Perfect, and you could just download it And it's yours. Doesn't get much easier than that. There you go. That's where you download it. Mandela is a Pdf for. There's a couple of their options. Let's try this one out That's going to show you how easy it is. Stick with the Miller. It flies. Aries speller. We'll see. That's it. Super easy. And you could just download it and put that in all your all your marketing materials of Take a look at that and, uh, you know, it's a free source. I love free sources of check out camera for sure. All right, guys, Now we have an awesome logo. Now let's do something with it. Let's get a website up and running. So on your website there's there are many websites that allow you to easily set up your site. Um, there they're pretty inexpensive, you know, between 10 and $20 a month, and they just have some great, you know, plug and play templates. Um, you know, a couple of the more popular Dragon Drop type website builders are gonna be wicks dot com. It's w i x dot com and squarespace dot com. Um, and there's there's a lot of other hosting platforms that can provide some more custom is ations. Um, like like wordpress you may have heard of before. Um, but you know, that can also take a lot of time to set up and make sure, you know, with with all the customization, you know, it almost takes over too much time, so just keep it simple. You something like wicks or squarespace to build your site. Just just keep it simple. Keep it straightforward. Keep it clean. Um, so now you know, in this course I'm not going to, you know, show you exactly how step by step have set up a website. It's not really the point of this course, but, you know, just jump in one of these hosting websites. They're very strict for very user friendly. Um, you know, don't spend thousands of dollars hiring a website designer to come out and set up a site for you. It's really not necessary for this type of business. You'll get plenty of clients just from a just from a basic basic website that it just provides the needed need to know information about about you and your offerings. Um, so let's do take some time and kind of go over the different pages you just have on your website and some of the information that you should have on those. So the first page, when every go to your domain, it's going to be your home page. So, um, this is where you're gonna put your logo, maybe a picture of your town skyline Or maybe a picture of you, you know, keep it very professional. Keep it clean. You know what? I would recommend doing this searching for some other book, even firms in your city or other large cities around you, and see what other firms were doing. See, What do you like on their websites? What you don't like. But, you know, just remember, keep it super clean. Make sure the message that you're trying to put out there is very present. And people know exactly when they launch your Web site. That no, your bookkeeping company, and they know that's what you're offering. Um, that should just be that that message needs to come off on that homepage. Uh, the next page that you should set up would be the service page. Um, since when were you gonna addle the services and a description of each service that you're offering? Make sure you emphasize the value that you're gonna be bringing to your clients. You're taking this huge burden off of their plate, but providing the's great complete financials that you're me giving them on a monthly or quarterly basis. Um, you know, from the website I would start with the basics and then add additional offerings. You know, once you've mastered the basic offering so some of the basic offerings are put on theirs. You know, um, cash to a cruel or cashing in accrual accounting, monthly reconciliations, monthly and quarterly financials, document storage. And that's something you can do for free on, like a dropbox. Um, some of the advanced services that you might offer down the road would be payroll services , sales tax preparation and filing. You might do some invoicing for your clients. You might do some file cleanups. A lot of times, clients was trying to do their books themselves for a while. There just, you know, making the total masks. They don't know what they're doing. Um, so you might have to go in there and reorganize some stuff and kind of go through their books and clean him up. That maybe a service that that you would want to offer and, you know, QuickBooks training a lot of a lot of bookkeepers left. You offered to sit down with their clients and you teach them the basics of how to have had a maneuver around QuickBooks. So that's a service may wanna be able to start offering down the road, but the service pages just list out all the things that that you want toe that you want to provide. Um, keep again. Keep it clean. Keep it straightforward. Don't don't overly complicate the that that site so on the next one will pay. What is that about? Page. So this is typically if the most trafficked page on any professional services website, so make sure that you include a picture of yourself. Ah, brief bio. If you don't have a lot of formal experience or formal education, you know, don't worry. Focus on your story and why you started your booking in practice. Talk about what you love bookkeeping. Why you love helping and working with small businesses. Um and, you know, again, just just keep it clean, keep it straightforward. But this is a very important page on on your website again, this is gonna be the most traffic page, so make sure that everything on there is ah, super clean. And the final page, I would recommend is putting a contact page on there. So this is another very important step that a lot of people miss. Um, you know, they want those have, like, a contact us, and they won't have any your contact information. So, um, you don't want to do that. You wanna You wanna get your phone number out there, get your e mail address out there mailing address or appeal box of if that's what you If you're working from home, make sure all that information's out there. So people can contact you when you don't want to hide your contact information from your customers you want. You want them to be able to get a hold of you. Um, I always put my you my cell phone number out there. I want I want my clients to be able to reach me anytime. Um and I answered. I answered every call I get, so just make sure, um, you know, put your information out there. You want people to contact you. That's how you're gonna get your clients. Don't put up a barrier on your website. Um, that just drives me nuts. When I see companies do that, when I try to, You know, if I'm reaching out to attorney and like, God's joke on his website and get his phone number and then they don't have any other information on there, it's like a contact us page. It's Yeah, it drives me nuts. Get your get your contact information out there. You want people to get a hold of you, and that's the whole point. That's what it was. Why we're doing this. Um, but that's that's basically it, you know, you want to keep it, keep it fairly straightforward. Keep it clean. Don't overly complicate the website. You just want, you know you want You want it Clear exactly what you're offering, Uh, your information. You know, I wouldn't I wouldn't add prices or anything onto your website. Um, you know, every client's gonna be a little bit different, like we talk about. So, um really, that that's all you need to website. So, um, another area probably wouldn't include, unless you really enjoy writing would be like a blogger or a news section. Um, first off, nobody really reads. Um, it's just takes up a lot of time, and if you don't keep it updated, it just looks really bad if you have condo websites where they haven't updated their news feed from three or four years. And so quite why do you even have this on there? It just looks. It looks like you're not keeping up with your website. So unless you really enjoy that and you really want toe, keep that out there and use that as as part of your marketing. Um, I really wouldn't Wouldn't recommend adding that on there. All right, now, let's take a look at some of the other marketing material that you may want to pick up in your business. Um, started business cards. You definitely want to print out some business cards you want. Include your your new logo. Make sure you have all your important contact information, including your businesses. Name your website, your your name, your title, your address, email address, phone number. You know all the major contact information. Um, again, you know, the more ways a client can contact you, the better you can jump on. There's Vista print there. Fairly inexpensive 10 15 bucks for the smallest package, and it kind of goes up from there. Um, there's a website called mu dot com m 00 dot com. They've got a little bit nicer cards, but you know, they're a little more expensively. 30 books, but up to 50 bucks when there. It's all relatively inexpensive, but, um, you know, every every penny, you know, counts when you're just starting off your business up. Either way, if you'll jump splurged for some nicer business cars at school or ah, this different, you know they have great cards as well. Um, the next thing I want I was some brochures. You know these air. Great to bring with you when you go to a new client meeting. You know, he should include basically the same material that you see on your website. Maybe maybe some additional information, like some, maybe some testimonials from some clients. Or, um, you know, some general procedures, payment guy lines, maybe an agenda are maybe a checklist for your first meeting, or what? What clients you should bring to to be on board it, you know, kind of what? Your on boarding process. Maybe Spell that out in the in the brochure. Um, again, You don't include your prices on anything. These will change over time. And you don't want to repent all your materials with different rates. So again, I wouldn't include your your pricing on your brochures. Um, I think we're gonna go over all the pricing and chapter aids. So, um, yeah, well, we're about to go over all that, but, you know, it's different for each client, and you really don't don't want to include that in your in your materials. Um, but again, you know, with all your marquee materials, make sure you emphasize the value that you bring into the clients. You know, that's that's very important to get that across to them, to let them know exactly You know what kind of value you're bringing to the table. There's a couple of things you're gonna get T shirts. You could do that. Um, What we do it, our firms will go get just like polo shirts. Um, from, like, the outlet mall, like under armour Nike polo shirts and those having embroidered with our with our company's name and logo on it. Um, then, like some flyers presentation folders, You know, however you want to pull together your marketing material, you really have some creative freedom here just to kind of, um, you know, creates really cool stuff. And, um, it's kind of kind of one of the fund more artsy sides of this business. Uh, but yet so jump on. I think this two prints a great resource for all of these types of materials. Um and, um, but again, you don't want to go. You don't go crazy on it, but it's good that show up to meet with the brochure. It's good to go to never get events with business cards, so it's always important to have have a few business cards on you. You never know what you're gonna when you're gonna meet that that client and one other areas kind of swag. So if you're not familiar with swag, this is like those squeeze balls or water bottles or, um, thumb drives with your company's information on it. Yeah, I really wouldn't waste my money on this kind of stuff until you've landed her first few clients. And it's really something that you want to do for yourself. Um, your clients don't really want a mug with your businesses. Name on it. Um, you know that I just don't think it's it's very important. It's not really something you should waste your money on. My philosophy is a lot of stuff is just keep it simple. Keep it easy. Uh, don't spend a ton of money on it, focus on just giving really good service. And and that's really is what's gonna help grow your business. So keep it simple, and you'll find the most success with that 6. Chapter 6 - Advertising: All right now we have all this beautiful marketing material. Now let's put it to work. Let's start to drive traffic to our new website. Let's get outs. Marketing events. Let's go over how to advertise your business, how to get out in front of clients. How to bring in all that work. Start making some money for yourself. Let's get started. All right. So let's start with the £800 gorilla in the room. The largest search engine, which is gonna be Google. So, you know, Google generates about 73% of traffic online. So you know, when people are out there looking for anything, they're gonna go straight to Google and type it in, you know, 73 3% of searches through which, you know, probably search, searched. Um, you know, stuff like this it's probably even higher than that. I would. It's probably closer to 80 85 maybe even 90%. Um, you know, when they when they come up with these search statistics there also taking into account video and like YouTube and stuff like that. So, you know, online search Google is gonna be the de most important once you want to make sure you rank really high in Google, which takes a little bit of time. Um, you want to make sure you follow the basic steps to get recognized on Google. So let's go over those quick steps right now is about five different steps to really good s CEO on Google. Um, the 1st 1 is going to be just register in your site with Google. So you just jump on you just Google, register your site with Google. Tell them what your new domain is telling what your business is doing. Um, they will mail you a confirmation code, which then you jump online, confirm it so they know you're a legitimate business. Um, and then you're then you're registered. Then you can start, you know, funneling some traffic and getting recognized on Google. So one of the one of the best ways to do that that I have found we actually have done it's in our firm is to request your clients to leave you reviews on Google. Um, so you know, when people Google book even firm near me, it's gonna pop up with a map with some firms near them, Um, and then underneath that it's gonna have, you know, a few links to different websites. So if you have reviews and Google knows where you are, you're gonna pop up on that map, and then you're also gonna public down below, probably on, you know, hopefully on the first page and get recognized, and then you're going to get, you know, people are going to start calling calling you based on that. So, um, the third way is gonna be to build external back links. So back link is when your website is listed on someone else's website, which then connects you back, um, back to your site. So, um, if your QuickBooks pro adviser, you'll be listed on on their website on QuickBooks website. Just want to make sure you enter your domain on there and then that will help to boost your rankings on Google. This all takes time. You know, it takes you may be six months before you really start to to see the your your website. Um, you know, book get bumped up onto the first page of Google. Another great way to get recognized on Google is going to be through social media. Like I said, they really like these back links. They like to see, you know, other sources coming into your site. So, um, you know, get on social so linked in Facebook Instagram You know, those are all great ways to get recognized and to drive more traffic back to your website. Um, in the last step is just going to track your performance. You use Google analytics if if you don't know what that is, it's basically just, um their tools that they used to track. How much traffic you're having come to your website. Um, and they can they can even tracking how many people click on the links to your phone number to call you. Many people click on the links to your address to kind of track where where you are if they're gonna come to your come to your law office. Um, so there's lots of different ways to track it. But these are the five most important ways to get Google to to link your website and to rank your website as high as possible. That's what's really important, and you can really get some easy clients off of there. But people that are just that are just Googling out there Google and looking for for new bookkeepers in your area. So make sure so the next door to focus on is gonna be linked in. So, um, you want to set up a professional profile on LinkedIn If you're not familiar. LinkedIn is a professional social network. So you list out, you know, your work experience your education description of kind of what you have going on. It's kind of like your resume, um, as a as a business owner. Um, but, you know, the best part about linked in is that it has all these local groups on it. So you want to join as many local networking groups or industry groups and reach out to the business owners of these groups and, you know, request meetings? Um, yeah, small business owners. They always want to meet with new people. They always, you know, are wanting to know what's going on in the business of. They're always happy to talk about their business. So strict. Cuesta coffee. You know, it's really easy, Um, in my experience, getting face to face with with clients, you know, building that personal relationship with perspective clients makes it so much easier to the in transition into becoming. You know, they're trusted source as as their bookkeeper. So, you know, in your first launching your business, you know, make it a goal. Reach out to 10 small business owners a day requesting a meeting, no matter how you what, no source you go through, whether be linked in or Facebook or or instagram Or, you know, whatever social media platform you have or just or just going, you know, researching companies that you want to work within emailing them directly. Um, you know, make it a gold. Reach out to 10 people a day, and you'll be amazed how quickly your your your coffee meetings get set up. All right, then Facebook. You know, we've have picked up a bunch of clients off Facebook. That's a great resource, especially a small business. A lot of times they jump on there, and they're just, you know, the theme throughout. The question is, anybody know a good bookkeeper thinking just link back to you, and you can, you know, ping him back real quickly. Say I'm happy to have you jump on a call or, you know, go out for coffee or lunch. is to kind of go over what you're looking for. You know, you can try to get front of build that relationship. I think that's the most important thing. Um, I definitely set up a Facebook business account. You fight your friends and family to join and share it and follow. Um, the more people you know in the business, the better. All right, so I get this question all the time. You know, what's the best way to drive up new business? What's the best way to get in front of perspective? New clients. Um and the truth of the matter is, it takes some work. You have to get out there, you to get out in front of people. You have to make yourself a little vulnerable and and, you know, kind of hit the streets and see what what people are doing and get in front of, um, you know, referral partners, and you ask for those asked for that business. As for that work Ah, here's you know, four different areas where I've really, you know, seen my business take off when I when I go out and use these used these four kind of referral sources. So the first was getting CPS. CPS love to refer business to bookkeepers who are not competing on the tax work. So you're just strictly performing the bookkeeping services. You're not doing any tax work. You're not doing any attestation work, which is audits, reviews and compilations. You just simply, you know, performing the bookkeeping function. And, you know, let the CPI a take care of the taxes. So, um, I would reach out to a few local CPS and see if if they do bookkeeping work, and if not, um, you know, ask them if if they would be interested in and kind of working with you and maybe throw in a couple clients and you'd be happy to send the tax work back back there with the second way is just kind of hitting the streets, handed out business cards to everyone you meet. Um, I've got clients from, you know, all all sorts of different strange ways I had Ah, I had it. My roof repaired last year. We had some hail damage. They'd come out and fix the roof. And no, that guy became a climb. You say? What do you do? I told him I have a book, you practice a way. Need that. Let me let me get your card. And you know, next thing you know, he's a he's a client. Um, it happens all the time, so just keep cars on you If people ask, you know, just make it real obvious that you're happy to talk about it. It helps if if you know your business names on your shirt or something. You know, sometimes you last day, what is what is that? You can you can tell him and had a business card. And you never know they may become a client. Um, the next way it's gonna be networking events. So join your local networking groups. You could do this on linked in. There's a bunch of networking groups on Meet up meet up dot com, Um, and just just show up. You know, show up with a fistful of business cards and pass them out to everyone you see, and you know, But but be genuine. Ask them questions about their business. Asked them, You know what? Some with some things that they're having a hard time overcoming, you know, House has their business going. What's, um What What areas have they seen? Success in what areas? So they have a hard time in. Um, ask him who's doing their books now. How much time do they spend on it? Um, you know, just just go to these events and you go show up, start shaking hands and meeting people and smiling. Be nice. And, uh, you you'll easily easily pick up some clients. The last was more industry specific. So, um, you contend attend industry specific events, So if you're gonna focus on dental practices or dentists, you can You go to these general specific conferences and meet people that way, and that works very well. Um, that works. That was really, really good as well. So you know any of these ways you can You just gotta get out there. You got to get in front of people. You should kind of get out of your comfort zone. It's gonna be a little uncomfortable, but, um, you know, put a smile on and and shake some hands and you'll be shocked how quickly your business will grow 7. Chapter 7 - First Client Meeting: All right, guys. We've gone over how to set up your business. What gear you need to get started, had a market and advertise your business. So now it's time to meet with your perspective clients. Let's walk through a first client meeting. So the phone rings. What do you do when you first of all, you'd answer the dang thing? Um, you know, make sure you answer all of your calls. You you cannot, um you know, miss perspective clients, because you're not answering your phone. I mean, that's just that's just silly. So make sure you answer, um, answer the calls using your company's name. Um, you know, the perspective client. They ask, um, a bit about your company and who you are. But, you know, the main reason that they're calling is they want to tell you about their problems were telling you about their issues. So just be receptive to ask him a couple questions. Maybe some leading questions. Tell me a bit about your business. Um, you know, what do you have going on? Um, I've never met an entrepreneur who doesn't love to talk about their business, but really, the goal of the initial call is to either schedule a meeting or if they're located in another city. Maybe jump on. Um, you jump set up another call and request a copy of their financials or a copy of their books to look at to kind of gauge the complexity of the book. So, um, if you know, some sort of they don't have books. If they don't have any books asked to see bank statements, you need some kind of information to gauge how complex they are. So how many transactions air going in and out of the books? Um, you need some more information to be able to give him a full proposal. Um, you know, if the client is open to a meeting, make sure your schedule in front of you make sure you're ready to go. And you know what times and days work best for you. Most introduction meetings. We're gonna take about an hour to make sure you give yourself plenty of time. I'm really flexible to the client schedules, but make sure you give yourself plenty of time that that you're not having to cut the meeting short. Um, if you're working a full time job, that is not flexible with your schedule. Try to work around it. Ask about, um, you know, early morning meetings or lunch time You find a way to make it work for both of you. Um, one more thing to consider. You know, they may ask how you charge. You don't want to give them the price of the phone, so you just say it depends. ITT's depends on the complexity of the of the books and the work that you would be doing. You explain to them that, um, that you're on a fixed the basis of the know exactly what the cost is gonna be each month before the work it started. We're gonna go over all the prices in the next chapter, but I just want to let you know you're you're in a fixed fee. You list of the engagement letters? Exactly. I don't know exactly what they're going to get. Um, and you're getting a price quote as soon as you can engage the complexity of the books. Um, you know, they're really pressed for an hourly rate out. Give him one, you know, relatively low $68 an hour, but again emphasized that you don't that you do not build hourly, that you're gonna build on a fixed fee. And, um, you know, they don't have to worry. Don't guess how much it's gonna cost each month. So next let's pick a location. I would request an initial meeting over coffee or at their office, Or maybe lunch and be flexible, like I said. But if they if they asked me to your office, you know, just be honest and tell him you work remotely or from home to keep overhead costs low, though respect frugality as their financial book keeper. Um, I don't think it would. It would be a big deal to any client. Um, if this is your side hustle and you're still working a full time job but recommend either taking lunch meetings or ask if they can work, meet first thing in the morning, maybe over coffee, Um, earlier, the better kind of outside of your normal work hours. Um, but you really want to meet face to face because this is a relationship business. People are going to trust you. Um, you know what their most important business financials you need to know know who you are and put a face with with you know who you are. Not just, you know, a phone call. So you want to build that relationship, build that trust, Um, So they can rely on you for for your opinion and know that I know that you're smart and, you know, you know how toe how to interpret their financials and give them some advice of, um And, um, you want to be You want to be the one they call when they have a business question. So you want to start building that report with the client right away? So get that get picked out. Initial location. You know, make it make it someplace. Um, kind of fun open. Um, Starbucks are always good. You know, any kind of coffee place is good. It's kind of loud. You can you can, you know, talk and grab a couple job. All right, so now you've got the location pick. You've had a phone call. Everything went well. Now, do a little research on this client. You know, you'll ask them on the call, you know, what's their business name? What's their name? Get some basic information from and then just do a simple Google search and, you know that provide plenty of information about the business. Um, she can generate some questions about their their particular industry. Um, look over their website and think about what issues may arise within their books. Do they have employees that inventory or, ah, large equipment, you know, have a couple off of of questions lined up before you get to that initial medium. Um, and I have a truck, a couple of trucking companies, and they have quite a bit of complex. Um, you name a lot of number of a large number of trucks and trailers and, you know, the depreciation is pretty complicated. Um, they have a lot of different loans, and there's amortization schedules with two room. So, you know, every industry is different. Every business is different. But you wanna commit with some questions and have a good idea about the industry? Just do a little bit of research, do your homework and know what you're what you're looking at before you come into the meeting. So you like I said you want plants? Um, talking points. So prepare for what the client may ask for you. Um, but also you know, prepared some questions for the client as well. Um, you know, So when they come in, they're gonna ask you tell me about your business. You know, what is what is your response going to be? Keep it your object and keeping it simple. Keep it to the point. Yeah, I'd say maybe something like this, you know, I was working for whatever company, and, you know, I noticed there was a need for, ah, qualified bookkeeper in this market. You know, I always wanted to work with work for myself, and, you know, this is going to be the perfect fit. I focus on providing a quality product as efficiently and as quickly as possible. I know business owners need accurate financials to make it business decisions and meet their bank requirements. I've always enjoyed working with small businesses and watching them grow and create opportunities for their employees. Um, you know that That's kind of a good example of what you should say in response to that question. Keep it sharp, keep it simple or hurts before you go into these meetings, that kind of know, trying to save, um, but, you know, don't be Don't be nervous. Don't be, um, you know, insecure. Even if you don't have a lot of education or or credentials to back up your experience. You know, I've I've been in hundreds of client meetings. I've never had a client asked me about my education or my credentials or my experience. You know, maybe they would ask you and you worked with a client in this industry before, you know, But just just be honest, um, so you know, if that's where your biggest fears of that's what you're stretching about. You know, clients just want to know that you can do the work and you can take this burden off of their plate. They don't care about your education or your experience level. Um, they definitely want to make sure that you're that you're qualified and that you did. You know what you're talking about. But, um, you know that there there's not going to ask you specific questions about your education or your credentials. It just doesn't happen. Um, you know, this is more of Ah, this is more of our internal fears than something that the clients ask for. And, you know, just think about it when you go to to interview someone you know, to talk about your doctor and you go talk to your attorney or whoever you know, you go talk to you on a daily basis. You're not asking them what? What are their credentials? You know, you just kind of can pick up if they know what they're talking about by having a conversation with him. So ask a lot of questions. You know, first, you're trying to get some information about the client, but you're also trying to gauge the amount of work and how long it's gonna take you the complexity of the work. Um, so you need to know, You know, some of the basic understandings of the business and gauge, you know, really how to gauge the complexities. Let's jump over to the client interview sheet, which will give you just a ton of questions, is what 20 questions in there. But, you know, I would good and add more to this as as you see fit. Um, it's kind of like a working template, but let's go over that in testicle. Look at what we have come up with us. It was kind of the basic questions. You want to go ahead and ask clients. So in the client interview, she goes over a lot of different information. So you start off. You just want to show you put the date on it. Somebody referred. You just want a document. All of this stuff, the client's name, their address or entity type. They started business their year end. Who to contact with their best phone number would service way of contacts. Um, and then just start going through these questions. You know, these air Really good. Especially on the first couple of meetings you go through and you're not really sure what to ask. Um, these air really good just to kind of keep the conversation rolling And just ask these questions of, you know, my favorite questions. Just tell me about your business. You know, what do you do? And then, you know, it tends to roll into more questions that you does. You see issues with with how they're doing things, or they'll start to raise questions as well. The next one's coming. Has your business structured? Um, you know, we've already gone over business and new structures in the previous chapter, but, you know, it's another partnership s Corp seek or LoC. So, proprietor, you know, how are they are they lets her legal structure, um, have their they up to date early, occurring all of their business tax returns. So are they working with the c p A to file those? Are they up to date? You know, sometimes we'll see clients there two or three years back. Um and you know, for whatever easy new, they're not working with the c p. A or there. These were unsure of how to do it or unsure if they needed to file taxes. Um, that's always a good question than if you're if you've contacted some CPS to refer you business. So it's good to be able to give that business back to them and say, Well, I I actually know a good C p a. Who had on recommend that I can recommend that you work with, um and then you kind of, you know, it's It's a mutual relationship, forgiving business both ways reforming how many owners, um, you know, it was important to know when you're doing allocations or distribution allocations and stuff like that, you want to make sure you know how many owners there are? How often do you take distributions from the company you sit upon QuickBooks or using QuickBooks desktop Requip this online, You know, where are your books? Where they currently updated. If are you six months behind your you year behind. Do I need to do all this catch up work? You know you have Teoh, you need the need that to know that Information to gauge. Um you know the proposal in their the engagement letter that you're going to send over to him, You know, how many bank accounts do they have? Any credit cards? Do they have these rural important questions? You You're You're always trying to gauge the complexity of the work. So to know how many counts you've to reconcile every month, you know, it's a big deal. Um, you know how many transactions do they typically have each month? They have employees. How many employees do they have? Who prepares the payroll? Those are all important questions. Do you offer health insurance? And you know who provides your health insurance? Because you're gonna see that expense coming through the bank. You want to be and make sure that you're that you're allocating that that expense properly . If key man life insurance, you know who is this through? You wonder that as well. So you can properly categorize that expense. As you know, key man life insurance is is not deductible for income tax purposes you want. Make sure you spike that out on the piano. Don't just categorize under insurance expense. Are you looking for monthly or quarterly financials? How often How often do they want these financials? That'll be important, important part of your engagement letter as well. Um, you know, there, there any specific reports that they're looking for in their financials. You know, we typically includes to balance you to p and L in a statement of cash flows, but you can always run compares and financials or budget financials budget versus actual financials. They kind of compare the two, um, comparison. Financials were really easy to run out of QuickBooks. As you know, um, they and they look for very professionals. That's another added value. You can put that with the management package. You send them every month or quarter. Um, those are those are all great ways to increase the value proposition that you're bringing to this relationship. Um, how to create in there? How do you create invoices or the invoice not equip works or they just invoicing. I have a separate third party software that's important to know. So when you're when you're reconcile in their A are you know, if they've created the invoices and there you have to then, um, you know, real applied that payment. Um, that receipt coming in against that outstanding invoice. How do you pay your bills? Are these writing checks out of QuickBooks? You know what? Do you you just writing things on your credit cards or, you know, how does everything get paid? Um, do you have any inventory? It's again. It's a very important questions. You can engage the complexity. Um, do you report any sales tax and who prepares your sales tax reports? That's that's important as well to make sure that they're up to date on other all their filing requirements and then just kind of some general questions. You know, what are your business plans for the future? You know, you're gonna grow this business. Are you looking to sell the business? You want to clean financials? You know what are you looking for over the next five years? Um, you know, these are important questions to just kind of know where the relationships go and with the clients looking for um, so you know, I would take this with you to each client meeting. You have to ask every single one of these questions, but it so it is just a good you know, thing to fall back on. If you're you know, if the conversation needs a little needs a little bump, you can always pull this out and to start to start asking questions often here and get them , get the get the client talking. So listen more than you speak. So instead of launching into a pitch about you and and what you dio and you get the client talking about their company, this this meeting is is not intended for you to ramble on about how great trip cos you find out your goals to find out as much as you can about what makes them unique. What's their position in the market? What's their strategic goals? Their problems, their pain points? Um, yeah, and the reason they've ended up sitting across from you. You want to know about them, you know, make this meeting focused about them in their business. And once you can do to help, um, yeah, during the meeting, I definitely, you know, take notes, ask questions, dig deeper into the into the client's world. And you are, you know, coaxing out virtual information to help you create the best solution for this client. And you're also demonstrating your communication and listening skills. So So just keep it, um, keep it focused. Try to keep the conversation focused on the client as much as possible. Um, wait for the client toe. Ask you about yourself and your plan before you dive into any of your talking points. So, typically, when I leave a meeting, I'll ask the client to send over their latest financials, either in a QuickBooks desktop export company backup filed or if they're using QuickBooks online and last for access to their QuickBooks account. Just like engage kind of complexity of the work. So nine out of 10 clients going to say it's very easy, you know, they're they're very simple books, but don't let him fool you. Um, if it was a ZZ, as they say, then they'd be doing to themselves. You know, you're really taking huge burn off of their plate. And you really providing a great service. I don't forget the value that you're bringing to the table. Um, you know, you want to review the last month and quarter in the last years. Books see how many transactions there are in any given month. Look for fluctuations in their revenue on a monthly basis. Your goal in reviewing the financials to get a better understanding of the business and what will go into preparing the books on a monthly basis? How long will it take you to import the bank activity? Categorized the expenses, record interest expense. Ask questions, you know, they finalized the books and send in the finished product. So next, you know you want to tell the client that once you've reviewed the financials, you'll be sending them over a detailed engagement letter. So Theo engagement letter is your agreement between the business owner and you. It spells out all the services that you'll be providing, as well as the services that you will not be providing and the timing in which you're gonna provide these services. Most importantly, it's includes the fees that you'll be charging and how you'll be getting paid. So check the templates, including this course. There's a great engagement letter example. Take this template and customize it to fit your own business. Put your own name and logo on it and, um, you know, read it over and review it and, you know, make tweaks to it, too, to make it fit your your desired outcome. All right, and then the last part is, just follow up. Um, after every meeting, you should send an email thinking them for the meeting, um, in expressing an interest and that you want to work with them, summarized the action steps and what you need from them to complete the engagement letter, make a note. Follow back up with them in about a week. Business owners they're juggling a lot on. They have a lot on their plate. So don't be surprised if they want you to communicate with another employee or if it takes them a little bit of time to get back to you, that's that. That's not a big deal at all. That's it. The initial meeting should be somewhat casual on more of, ah, get to know you That a formal business meeting. You're trying to understand what they're looking for and see if you'd be a good fit and see if they would be a good fit with you. So that's it. You've made it. You've gotten through the initial meeting, and, um, now you're now you're building clients, so let's Ah, let's keep moving. 8. Chapter 8 - Let's talk Money: all right, gang. Now it's time for one of the most important topics. You may have even jumped ahead to this chapter to see exactly what the deal is. So let's do it. Let's talk money. How much should you charge for your services? Every accountants favorite saying is, Well, it depends. And in this case, it's really true. In my opinion, value billing is the best way to invoice your clients. So value billing is a way of billing based upon the value of the services is through the number of hours actually spent doing the work. Um, I would recommend creating a fixed fee approach with your clients. So the fee is included in the engagement letter and is and you know, this amount is not going to change. Is this This is a fixed fee. Um, it does not change blisters, a significant change to the tasks being requested by the client. Um, you know, I can assure, you know, clients are gonna love this because they know exactly how much it's gonna cost him each month. They could budget, um, and and it's it's great for you because you don't have to track time, you know, how to create invoices each month with a particular number of hours that you, they, um no incurred. You can just send them the invoice. Or if you have them on auto pay, just go ahead and build them once the works complete. Um, you know, the only the only down side of this is it takes a little more time to create the engagement letter. You need to review the books and make sure you're not under pricing or overpricing the engagement. Um, most of my engagements they're gonna run between $350 if it's a very small company to, you know, 1000 somewhere somewhere a little bit more a month, depending on the complexity. So let's take a look at the pricing template. Um, first, you know, the price and template is just a starting point. So if you can tell that a client's gonna be difficult to work with, you may want to increase the fees or, if you can tell they're really fee sensitive. But the relationship may be worth pricing them at a lower price point. Um, if you see you know potential that their relationship can grow into something more, you know, that may be worth it as well. Additionally, there's there's other certain geographical areas that demand higher prices, like New York or San Francisco. Um, so if your area, you know, has high demand, you may want to charge a premium for that as well. So again, you know, this is just temple is just a starting point, and you should adjust it to fit your situation. Um, so if you see the first category kind of broken, he's up into four different categories. The 1st 1 is the launch. This is gonna be a brand new client. Um, brand new starting business. Um, with relatively low number transactions, you know, less than 100 monthly transactions wanted to bank accounts in including credit cards. Um, you know, the average monthly expenses going to, you know, less than $1000 monthly revenues will be up to maybe $5000 a month. It's a relatively small business just starting off. You know, if they have employees, it's under three. Um, you know, I would usually prices around $350 a month if they want to quarterly, you could bump it up to 5 50 a quarter so growth is gonna be the next section. A legionnaire get progressively more complicated, progressively more expensive. So has once a kind goes into the growth phase. The prices go up a little bit. Between 105 100 transactions 23 bank accounts between 2000 and 10,000 of monthly expenses between five and 20,000 monthly income. And you know they're gonna have some employees. So up to, you know, less than listen. 10 employees somewhere between probably three in 10 employees. The next category is going to be the mature, um, maturity category. So it's starting to get a little more expensive, you know, $750 a month, but it's gonna take you some time. You know, um, it'll probably take you anywhere. Thought between five and 10 hours a month to go through a book. Ah, set of books of this size. So it's between a 500,000 transactions a month, 24 bank accounts, monthly expenses between 10 $50,000 a month and monthly revenues between 20 and $100,000 a month. They would have up to, you know, could be always to 25 employees. Um, and again. You. This isn't written in stone, so if they've got, they could have five employees but have 20 contractors, you know, you know, So it's not. It's not written in stone. Every client's gonna be a little bit different. The next and final kind of committed corporate. She's gonna be the much larger, you know, bigger businesses. Um, that we would consider taking on the monthly prices are going to be pretty substantial. So, you know, $1000 a month quarterly's could be at least $1500 you got 1000 plus transactions a month. It's gonna be significant in my time four plus bank accounts or expenses creator than $50,000 a month and, you know revenues of 101 100,000 plus. This would be it's a $1,000,000 business and you know they're gonna have They're gonna have some employees as well. So this is all something to consider. Like again. Like I said, this is just It's a template, just a guide of kind of where I start to price things. And again, it's not written in stone. Every client's different. If some clients may have multiple businesses that they want you to bid on. You know, that happens quite frequently. Actually. We're climate communities. A. And I have three different companies and eat books done on. And they're all relatively small Can, you know, come in like a like a bundle deal. And of course, we just look at those, um, you know, try to consider what what the best fee would be. So that's, um, that's the pricing template. And it's, um, you know, it's just meant to be a guide, you know, like I said, each, As you can see, each category gets progressively more complicated and more expensive. Um, but I wouldn't bring this price and sheet to your meetings. It's simply a starting point. Uh, the client wants additional services like forecasted financials, budgets, payroll sales tax. Um, that sure, if you're willing to take that on all those would be additional services and charge separately in the engagement letter. Why not one other item would like to point out, is the difference between monthly and quarterly. Oftentimes the client will say that they only need quarterly financials, and this is fine. But, you know, I always ask that they start off on a monthly basis And once we have established a working relationship and and we know more about their business that we can kind of move them to a quarterly review. Um, are especially if they're going to keep the books. And we're just looking at it, You know, the quarterly basis they already have everything categorized and placed in the buckets. And QuickBooks weren't you going and kind of review everything that makes some adjustments ? Um, that defined do on a quarterly basis. Um, but, you know, often companies want to try to try to save money on their books. But, um, you know, they can get the whole pretty quickly through making mistakes and overlooking, you know, expenses of you always want to make sure that you that you just tell him the value that you're bringing and tryto tryto explain how how easier, much easier it is to make business decisions. If you have up to date financials. Um, not only at most, most clients are required to have financials for any loan covenants or any bank issues that they're dealing with. So it's also need to consider um, but the other surprising template Go over that, um and you think about how this will apply to your business. How are you going to start charging clients? So those were all good starting points again. It's It's just a just a temple is just a starting point. But, um, you know, as you can see, you don't need to have that many clients to really make a good living. And especially we just got to this on this side, and you can easily pick up three or four small clients and make and make a very decent, decent little side hustle. Or it's really easy to take this full time as well. If you could take on 10 clients, could could definitely have, ah, could definitely be a full time income. So take a look kind of run the numbers. Think about how much you're gonna need to to sustain your business and how much you need to take home on a monthly or quarterly basis. 9. Chapter 9 - Deliverable: so we're flying through the material. Now let's take a look at the final product. So once the client has agreed to proposed fees, it's time to get to work. The intention of this course is not to teach you how to actually do the work. But instead you know how to start an operate grown bookkeeping business. Ah, and really, how to make money, how to be profitable. So, you know, we've included in this report moons course material, a workflow checklist. This'll again are fully customizable and should be customized for each client. So we use this in our firm to review the work of our staff and make sure everything has been has been completed, as as we want for each client. It's also a great idea, you know, to use these checklist to make sure you have completed each step of the book, even process to ensure, you know, the works consistent, reliable and professional. So let's take a look at this checklist. Okay, so at the top of the workflow checklist, you see the client's name, the date in date out. Um, I said you want to create one of these for each one of your clients. So And, um, this isn't something that you want to share with your clients is more for internal tracking purposes. Um, typically, don't want to release these clients. This is just for just for your internal kind of internal checklist. Uh, you want a market? It's a monthly quarterly or annually, and then everything kind of below that line should be customized for each In particular client, these air just kind of, um, some normal things that we that we make sure we hit on each on each review. Um, you know, you just run through a couple of these real quick just to, you know, check the notes from the from the last reconciliation, the last set of financials that we did to make sure any changes, any answers haven't made. Um, And then, you know, just the normal normal book, even process, you know, make sure all cheques and credit card transactions haven't entered. Reconciliations have been done. Loan statements have been recorded. Um, you know, then just making sure all the accounts and transactions are are in the right. The right accounts confirm, you know, payroll activities. Correct. And, um, just just kind of you know, make sure things in there and then and then make sure that the final work papers and the completed financials have been sent to the client as well. Which is, you know, the most important step, actually, just to make sure the client actually gets the work that you've worked so hard on on preparing. So speaking of that final delivery ble, let's take a look at that. So, you know, one of the most important parts of running your bookkeeping businesses that it's actually often overlooked is the customer delivery able, You know, I send to all clients whether using QuickBooks online or desktop, I always said them instead of financials, um, you know, with our cover sheet included, so you know, instead of financials, wouldn't would include, you know, the cover sheet, the balance sheet and income statement and the statement of cash flows. Um, so this son always shows that the client that the work has been complete but also forces them to see where their business stands from a financial perspective. Um, you know, as a side note, I recommend including the following footnote on each page of the financials. Um, because something like this off in pregnancy that I read four management use only no assurances provided. And this just shows the bank or other third party that thes financials have been prepared for internal use management use only. And you haven't provided any attestation work, which includes audit reviews, um, compilations. So, you know, if you're not familiar with that estacion work, I wouldn't I wouldn't worry about it. These air typically services that an external auditor C p a would would provide. Um, you know, this would this isn't something that really most clients even need or want their fairly expensive. But, you know, c p a would need to perform that work. So So it's not probably something usual be offering, at least when you're started up. So, um, as far as the deliverables go, always make sure you include, you know, balance sheet. You can ask the client if they want, like a comparable balance sheet or, um, you know, if they just want, you know, their standard current balance sheet for the period ended. For income, statements are almost always include their current year to date income statement, and then a monthly broken down income statement, which shows you know the further for that period for that year's month by month, um, income statement. And then if they want a comparable income statement, will include one of those as well where you're comparing, um, the last month to the to them that month of the year before to kind of gauge how the growth has been and compare expenses. Um, but, you know, it's not a client by client basis. And I would include that in that workflow checklist as well. You know which statements I would want to include with their financials. If they request a specific, um, set of financials or a specific report in their financials, I should say so, uh, that's about it. So make sure that deliver herbal is spot on. Make sure that, um, you know, you work full checklist include every step that you you do, and you know, that should be a working document. So whenever something changes, or whenever you say I need to include this this third step or this this additional step, um, in this set of books, make sure you update the checklist to include that. I like to do this as well. So when whatever higher on people, you know, I know that I have, ah, workflow for each client. And, you know, someone that's that's not familiar with that client can pick up that worked fairly easily and make sure that they get the same result that that I that I've been getting. So as you grow as you scale, you know, you may want to to hire people or if if you know, for whatever reasons, I was just going to step in for a month t to help you out. You know, it's a good it's always a good idea to have have a workflow, um, to to easily, uh, duplicate your work. 10. Chapter 10 - It's a Wrap: All right, guys. We did it. You're done. This is the profitable bookkeeper. You made it through the course. And you know you're ready to start your own your own bookkeeping businesses. I'm really excited for you. I think it's gonna be a life changing endeavor. Um, you know, just remember it. Always keep learning. Always keep your customers first. You work hard, have fun. It's is Ah, it's a great profession. You can really help clients a lot. And, you know, healthy small businesses grow to the next level. It's really exciting to see your clients grow and grow your business alongside. There's, um you know, I always tell my clients, I want you to be as successful as possible because then that gives me more opportunity to do more work for you. So I want you to grow just as much as you do. And, um, you know, let's let's take it just a quick look back at, you know, the kind of the 10 steps start a process, 10 things that you should be doing. This is kind of the order you should do them in. We've gone over all this in the course, but this is just a kind of a quick recap. So first you want you want to pick your name, then you wanna set up your entity. So I would, you know, as we talked about set up in loc, get those bank accounts set up, credit card set up, and then jump on like we went on through can va and set up the logo and then put your processes in order. You know, make sure that that you know what you're doing. Um, and, you know, you know, each step go over the templates that included in the course, customize, um, to fit your needs. And make sure you have all your hardware and software. Like like we went over. You know, you don't need much. You can kind of do this bare bones, and then you go over some training, make sure that you're familiar with all the QuickBooks and familiar with the process. And and, uh, you know, feel confident in what you're doing, and then you get out. Network guys, get out. Tell your friends, Tell everybody you know, screaming from the rooftops. A. I'm starting my own business posted to Facebook, posted to Twitter and instagram. Whatever all of your social media is Get out there and just tell everyone say, hey, you know, starting my own business. Let me know if you need if you need help or if you know anybody that has a small business, they need some help. You know, I'm ready to jump in and then set up those meetings and then, you know, land that first client once you get that first client so excited And, um, you know, it's a little nerve racking as well, but but you're going to do awesome. And and it's it's really just a great great feeling once you get that first client lined up . Um, but, you know, it's really on you. You need to you need to take massive action. You you have to take action or nothing's gonna happen. You're just gonna your daydream about about starting your own business forever. Um, you know, with anything in life, really just gonna take action and and, you know, put that fear side and just just get out there and do it. So if you take away anything from this course, you know, I hope you take away the confidence that you can do this. You can start your own business. It's It's not. It's not super difficult. You know, they're definitely some steps to take. And you know some things to do to make sure that you're doing everything correctly. But, you know, most importantly, you just have to take action. Guys, you just have to try to get out there and, uh, and do it. So, um, feel free to reach out up on my contact information in here. Feel free to reach out if you have any questions. And I was happy to answer. Um, and best of luck, I wish you wish you the best of luck in. And I think, yeah, you're into Awesome. So thanks for taking the course. I greatly appreciate it. And good luck take massive action.