Master Your Small Business Accounting with QuickBooks Online

This post is brought to you by Intuit QuickBooks. While this post was sponsored by Intuit QuickBooks, all content and opinions expressed here are my own.

Entrepreneurs and small business owners tend to be a pretty plucky bunch.

They recognize the need that they can fill, work tirelessly to offer the best product or service they can, and they take full control of their careers by creating a new small business.

However, there is one aspect of being the boss that can strike fear into the hearts of even the most dauntless new entrepreneur: handling the accounting.

Once you take the plunge into creating a small business, you no longer have an employer to handle all of the necessary financial organization that keeps things humming along. Suddenly the buck stops with you when it comes to accounting, taxes, invoices, bank transfers, expense reports, and all the rest.

But there’s no need to let the financial side of entrepreneurship scare you away from your dream. You can handle your small business accounting needs without tearing your hair out or paying for an accountant to do it for you.

That’s because QuickBooks Online makes it easy and affordable for the small business owners to manage their own books—and during their Independence Day Sale, which has been extended for an extra day, you can save up to 70% off!

Here’s how signing up with QuickBooks Online will help you organize your finances so you can focus on doing the entrepreneurial work you do best:

What is QuickBooks Online?

You’re probably at least familiar with the well-known QuickBooks program, which has been a beloved fixture of the business accounting industry for many years.

QuickBooks Online takes just what a small business owner needs from the original software, and offers a streamlined, online-only version that will solve many of the common problems you might be facing as an entrepreneur.

Since this program is part of the QuickBooks Online suite of internet programs, you can use it anywhere you have Internet access. Use it at your family or friend’s house, in another state, a restaurant or hotel with Wi-Fi, or your laptop on your bed if you have Wi-Fi there, or even on your smart phone or device.

That can help you stay on top of small details because you can handle them when you think of them, rather than have to wait until the next time you’re in front of a computer.

How Does QuickBooks Online Work?

Quickbooks Logo

When you sign up with QuickBooks Online, you will start by linking your bank accounts to the program. (If you already use to keep track of your finances, QuickBooks Online will allow you to import all of your transactions for the entire year.) Once you have synced your accounts, you will start to categorize transactions based on the IRS Schedule C.

This initial categorization may take a little time, but it will make tax season much easier since you will not have to reorganize your transactions.

In addition, you can create Transaction Rules that will help to pre-categorize certain regular transactions. When a particular vendor expense clears your bank, or when you deposit a check, the Transaction Rule will always categorize these transactions in the same way, which can save you a ton of time.

Great On-the-Go Features

One of the things that separates QuickBooks Online from other small business accounting programs is the on-the-go features that are included with the smartphone app. For instance, the program lets you instantly track and organize expenses right from your phone.

You can sort your business spending with a swipe, making expense tracking far easier and more fun. You can also connect to apps you already use for seamless integration with the tools already in your financial toolbox.

Another time-saving smartphone and tablet feature is the ability to organize receipts by snapping photos of them. The program enters the transaction information for you, automatically matches and categorizes expenses from the receipt, and stores and organizes the photos of the receipts so that you’ll be ready for tax season.

Creating and sending invoices is also effortless with the app. You can create invoices straight from your smartphone and keep tabs on any open invoices so that you can send overdue notifications when necessary. The app also notifies you when your invoice is sent, viewed, and paid, so you will never have to keep track manually of who owes you what.

Find the Tier That Meets Your Needs

Currently, QuickBooks Online is offering an Independence Day sale (extended for an extra day!) of up to 70% off, which makes this very affordable program an even better deal.

QuickBooks Online recognizes that not every small business has the same needs, so it offers three different service tiers—although you can try before you buy with a free 30-day trial of any of these options.

  • Simple Start: This version allows you to customize and send invoices, track income and expenses, create and manage estimates, and sync bank accounts and apps. You can add enhanced payroll or full service payroll to this version for an additional monthly fee.
  • Essentials: In addition to the features you get with Simple Start, Essentials also allows you to manage and pay bills, and gives you instant sales and profit reports. As with Simple Start, you can add enhanced payroll or full service payroll to this version for an additional monthly fee.
  • Plus: In addition to all of the Essentials features, Plus also allows you to track inventory and prepare and print 1099 forms for your independent contractors. You can add enhanced payroll full service payroll to this version for an additional monthly fee.

The Bottom Line on Quickbooks Online

You may be your own boss, but there’s no need to reinvent the wheel when it comes to keeping your small business finances in tip top shape. QuickBooks Online will make it easy for you to manage your money and your time, so that you can keep your focus where it needs to be: on building your business.

About Emily Guy Birken

Emily Guy Birken is a former English teacher and respected personal finance blogger. She lives in Milwaukee, Wisconsin with her engineer husband and two high-energy little boys. She has written four books: The Five Years Before You Retire, Choose Your Retirement, Making Social Security Work For You, and End Financial Stress Now. Emily's thoughts on parenting and life in general are found at The SAHMnambulist.