6 Steps to Successfully Starting a Business While Moving

Life can get complicated, especially when you’re trying to start and run your own business from home. If you live in an apartment or rental space that isn’t suitable for both living and working, you may have to move. Universal Accounting School shares six steps to successfully launch your home-based business in a new home.

1. Renting a Home

If you’re going to open up a shop in your home, ensure it’s suitable for living and working. Some homes aren’t conducive for working because they have no office space or they don’t have an appropriate layout. You need to understand your finances before signing on any dotted lines. Your purchase needs to fit within your budget. If you’d rather put money into your business rather than using it for a down payment, consider renting instead of buying. There are many homes available for rent—simply search online listings and use their filters to find the ideal rental.

2. Layout of Your Home Office

Home offices are typically small, meaning it’s essential that your home office has a specific layout that works for you. Think about how you want your desk space set up and how you want to decorate it. For example, if you have children or pets, you might want to keep your expensive computer equipment hidden away in an area where they’re unlikely to accidentally break it. Plants can bring life into your workspace and add a sense of calm.

3. Moving Tips

Make a moving checklist, and label boxes clearly before packing them up. That way, when it comes time to unpack, you can stack everything in its proper place without having to open every box first.  If you’re moving with pets, getting them comfortable in the new surroundings makes for an easier transition. Ensure your pet has had ample opportunity to explore your new home, so they don’t get freaked out by unfamiliar sights, sounds, or smells.

4. Starting Your Business in Your New Location

Once you purchase a property or sign a lease agreement, register your business with Google Business so local customers can find you online. Be sure to also check if you need permits or licenses in your new area. Depending on your business, you may be required to get a zoning permit or license from local authorities before getting started. When relocating your business, challenges are inevitable, but don’t let them get you down. If you plan well in advance, are organized, and take it step by step, challenges become opportunities for great success.

5. Benefits of Forming an LLC

A limited liability company affords liability protection and tax benefits. When you form an LLC, your personal assets are protected from business liabilities, so if your small business fails and you lose money, it won’t affect your home or car. Your LLC also gives you tax advantages. Each state has its own rules for creating an LLC, so check the requirements before proceeding.

6. Using Social Media to Market Your Business

Social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Linkedin and Instagram are a powerful tool for marketing your business. By creating a page or profile for your business on one or more of these platforms, you can reach a wide audience of potential customers with minimal effort. In addition, social media allows you to interact directly with your customers, build relationships, and address any concerns they may have. Best of all, creating a social media presence for your business is generally free. Enhance your social media pages with an attractive banner. Banner templates are easy to use, and many are free. Once you’ve chosen a template, you can add your own copy, font, colors, and images. 

A Successful New Start

It’s possible to start your business successfully while you move. All you need is patience, planning, and creativity. Find a suitable home, begin the process of moving, register your business, and start marketing on social media to transition smoothly and start earning a profit. Universal Accounting School offers small business, tax, accounting, and bookkeeping online certification programs. Learn more about how you can get certified.

Functions You Should Outsource If You’re Not That Tech-Savvy

While many functions within businesses now involve technology in some way or another, not all of us are technically inclined or have the level of expertise to handle certain technical functions in business, especially if they’re particularly complex. Here are some of the more common tasks that business owners are choosing to outsource instead of doing them themselves, courtesy‌ ‌of‌ Universal Accounting.

Web design

 

Designing a website requires a lot of technical know-how to get it spot-on. Furthermore, websites nowadays are designed to rank high in search results, and this often requires continuous optimization to ensure it’s up there in Google’s search results. Web designers are highly skilled professionals that know all the ins and outs of how to make your website stand out. And because websites are one of the primary ways people get to see a glimpse of your business first-hand, it’s vital that this should not be left to chance.  Consider build an accounting specific website with www.UASites.com 

Social media management

 

Social media is one of the best ways (if not the best) to build brand awareness and engage with customers. That said, it is time-consuming managing various social media accounts. Outsourcing this function is a great option if you don’t have the time, resources, or knowledge to keep up with this function as social media professionals are usually highly talented in this field, and they generally know what it takes to stay abreast of social media trends so that your business stays competitive in the online space.  Learn what you can do to leverage your online presence to get clients, attend this webinar to see how: The Universal CRM

IT services

 

Again, IT is also usually a complex task that is best left to professionals. Moreover, having a team of IT professionals on standby should your computer systems shut down for no reason, could be the lifesaver you need that would prevent your business from coming to a complete standstill. Also, with the incessant rise of cybercrime these days, a company can ill-afford not to have their cyber-security up-to-date ready to detect any fraudulent activity from the get-go.  Listen to this recent discussion that Roger Knecht had with Hoosein Dodkhah regarding Remote Work Security for accounting firms.

Software you can use instead of outsourcing

 

Of course, there are certain things you can do yourself to manage simpler tasks using automated software that is widely available online. For example, if you think your invoice templates could do with an update, you can download a free invoice template from an online invoice generator. 

 

Furthermore, these invoice templates are simple to customize according to how you want them to look. All you have to do is choose from the available pre-made templates and choose photos, logo, text, and whatever else you would prefer to create a professional-looking invoice. Just be sure to select an online invoice generator that allows you to download an invoice in the format of your choice so that it gives you multiple options if a certain format doesn’t work well for you. 

 

Other types of software that you could utilize instead of outsourcing these functions include Customer Relationship Management software to manage the customer service side of things better. Or, if you’re not that adept at accounting, accounting software can help you with basic bookkeeping functions until you see your accountant next. 

 

In summary, while you might feel like you would prefer to do everything yourself, outsourcing various tasks to those who specialize in certain niches might be the best thing you could do if you want your business to excel in those areas that are extremely competitive.  Basically there is a turnkey process to having a successful virtual bookkeeping business.  Check out what you can do today to become an Accountrepreneur.

By Sharon Wagner

Choosing The Ideal Business Name For Your Brand

So you’ve decided to break through into the big bad world of entrepreneurship.

Great for you! 

But now that you’ve made the decision, there are dozens of items that you’ll need to check off your list before you reap the rewards of all your hard work. 

Although it’s not the most complicated task, one of the first things you need to do is choose a business name. 

It seems easy enough, but there are a few things you’ll need to keep in mind before making your final decision. 

Let’s take a look! 

 

Do Some Research

Every country, county, city and municipality will have different laws that govern business names. 

Therefore, the very first step in choosing your business name is to take the time to research your local legislation and how it might affect you and your business name. 

Then, once you’ve done this, it’ll be time to put on your thinking cap to brainstorm your best options. 

 

Avoid Copying Other Brands

It might seem obvious, but you don’t want to choose a business name that might get you in trouble down the road. 

In most jurisdictions, a business name can be used by multiple entities so long as the name isn’t a registered trademark

However, when it comes to successful businesses, you want your name to be as unique as possible. 

In other words, if you’re selling athletic footwear, you’re going to want to avoid choosing a name like McShoes or anything along that same vein, which could lead to legal troubles later on. 

Not to mention that consumers might think that your shoe company is a subsidiary of the McDonald’s Corporation.

 

Get Creative

Another essential tip for choosing a good business name is to make sure that your business name is catchy, memorable, and unique. In other words, you’ll want to get creative and use words that are related to the products or services that you plan on offering. 

If we use the same example of selling shoes, you’ll want to use words, such as:

  • Shoes
  • Footwear
  • Athletics
  • Feet 
  • Toes
  • Etc. 

Then try combining in different creative ways that consumers can easily remember, giving them a good idea of what your brand is all about. 

In other words, please keep it simple and to the point! 

For instance, you might come up with something like The Athletic Feet Company. 

Not only does this name let people know that your products have something to do with feet. It also lets them know that it’s related to athleticism, which gives a good indication of what type of products you’re offering.

 

Register Your Business Name

Once you’ve decided on a name, the next step will be to register your business name with your local authorities. 

This step is the main difference between having a side-gig and running an actual business. 

After registration, you can then move forward with creating your own branded logo and any other marketing materials that you’ll use to promote your business in the future. If you are operating on a budget try a free logo maker to design your own brand. 

Choosing The Best Business Name

Although there’s much more that goes into creating a successful business, the process of choosing a good, memorable business name should not be overlooked. 

In the future, this name is the way people will first hear about your brand. 

Like your own name, your business name will be a massive part of your business identity. 

So take the time to do a bit of research, get creative, and find a name that won’t only suit your desires but will also be in harmony with your current and future business plans! 

 

Don’t Leave Your Success To Chance

Lastly, when it comes to building the premier accounting business be sure to consider the services available with Universal Accounting Center.  From training, certification programs, coaching and support you can be in business for yourself but not by yourself.

by Bessie Stokes

Starting Your Own Accounting Business: 5 Things You May Not Have Considered

Have you been thinking about starting your own accounting business? It can be tempting to take this leap into being your own boss, but there are several things you should consider before you move forward. There are plenty of advantages to running your own accounting business, but just because you are great at accounting doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re ready to be a business owner. The points below are all important ones to consider.

Your Education

Both starting an accounting business and education cost money, and you might be concerned about spending money on your education that you should be setting aside for your accounting business. However, having the right education is critical as well, and a graduate degree can really unlock your potential and prepare you for success. You may be able to get student loans from a private lender at a favorable interest rate to pay for the degree.  Either way, there is a path to becoming an Accountrepreneur.

Buying One or Starting a New One

One of the most important decisions you’ll need to make is whether to purchase an existing accounting firm or start your own. There are different factors to keep in mind, and some of them will be specific to the company that you are considering buying. First, think about costs. On the one hand, you can arguably start your own accounting business out of your house with very little overhead. However, you might have to spend some money on marketing and getting your name out there, while an established firm might already have better name recognition. On the other hand, there’s no question that you’ll need a substantial amount of money in order to purchase a company.

If you’re buying a firm, one thing you have to be careful about is their existing financial situation. You will need to be prepared to really dig into their records and make sure you understand any liabilities they have. The owner of a struggling company that is up for sale might not be very forthcoming about money problems. When you purchase a firm, there are certain things that might be out of your control, like client loyalty and whatever rates the business has established. You can certainly increase the rates later, but you’ll need to keep them the same to start with.

Along similar lines, you may need to offer the same services for a while as you make the transition while if you start your own, you can simply offer what you want. Software and other equipment are going to be necessary and potentially costly. If you purchase a company, make sure you know exactly what is coming with the purchase and the age and condition of it all.

Either way, consider being in business for yourself but not by yourself with Universal Accounting Center.

Managing Employees

Whether or not to have employees might not be a decision you have to make immediately, but it is something you’ll need to deal with eventually. If you are starting from scratch, it might just be you, but you may want to add staff over time. If you’re purchasing a company, there may already be employees.  How much do you know about managing people? It may not be enough to be a good accountant.

This is where a degree in management could come in handy if you don’t have a background in it. If you have neither of these, you might want to read a few books about management and, if possible, explore taking some classes or seminars. Managing people is a skill in itself, and it’s a mistake to think that just because you are a whiz at accounting, you’ll also be great at management. Of course, some people are naturals in this position, but doing some reading can help confirm your instincts or shore up places where your skills might be weaker.

Your Personal Qualities

Having the right qualities to be an entrepreneur go beyond management skills. You also must know that owning your own business comes with many shades of grey. You might currently be asking yourself basic questions like is starting a tax prep business right for me but you need to understand that knowing if you have what it takes to actually do it is going to come from many more in depth questions about who you are as a person.

One irony you may face is that the very qualities that make you an excellent accountant are not necessarily that same ones that make for an excellent entrepreneur. Accountants may tend to be cautious and conservative, not risk takers like many entrepreneurs. There is an element of financial insecurity associated with running your own business that may fly in the face of your instincts. However, careful, and cautious people can be successful entrepreneurs as well. Making sure you have the right business knowledge and skills will be important. Writing a business plan can help you figure out where your weaknesses may be, and you’ll need one if you’re planning to seek loans or other types of funding.

Networking and Building a Client List

It’s not uncommon to get so caught up the various details of getting everything up and running that you lose sight of what you most need to succeed: customers. Are you a people person? If you’re more comfortable with numbers than people, this may involve some effort, but you’ll need to retain clients if you’re buying a business and attract them in the first place if you’re starting your own. And without the big budget that large firms have, that may depend on your ability to network and sell yourself and your company effectively.

You should work to strengthen the existing contacts you already have in the industry and locally and think about how you can make yourself more visible. This will vary depending on the type of service that you offer and the clientele that you want to attract, and you may want to consider working with a marketing firm or an individual to help you raise your profile if you are struggling to attract clients.

In short there is a Turnkey Business Plan for accounting professionals, there is no need to feel like you need to reinvent the wheel.

Start, Grow, Cash In, Repeat

One strategy of some of the most successful business owners is to build a business from nothing, grow it, and sell it or have someone else run it. So how does it work and why would someone want to do it in the first place?

Why "Flip" Businesses

The process of starting, growing, and selling a business is called"flipping" it. Start with a business that is in demand, such as Accounting and Bookkeeping services that has a wide client base. You then find clients to build up the business into a profitable venture. Finally, sell the service to investors and cash out. Let’s see why this can work.

How Much Is an Accounting Service Worth?

To understand whether this strategy is appealing to you, you need to know first of all what an investor will pay for an Accounting service. On average, you should be able to sell your Accounting and Bookkeeping service for the amount of client billings you would have in a 12-18 month period. An average small-business client will pay you $300/month to service their Accounting and Bookkeeping needs. So, if you get up to 20 clients, you are billing $6,000/month. This means that you could sell your business at the 20 client level for between $72,000 and $108,000.

Try our Client Income Calculator.

The "Flip" Process

Let’s compute how much money you can make using the flip strategy. The graph below illustrates money collected each month as you build the business then sell it.

The Steps

1. Start the Business

You will start the business from scratch. Make sure that you have a firm understanding of small-business Accounting and Bookkeeping, the kind of bookkeeping that the Professional Bookkeeper™ (PB) program teaches. Beyond the basics of Accounting and Bookkeeping, the PB program teaches you to run your Accounting and Bookkeeping service smoothly and how to take your skills to market.

The PB program teaches you how to find profitable clients quickly! You will use the marketing techniques taught in Module 4 of the Professional Bookkeeper™ program to find 2 new clients each month. This requires little effort on your part. Module 4 teaches you how to find potential clients and the techniques to make them paying clients. Just follow the step-by-step procedures and it comes easy.

The most incredible thing is that once you establish your client base, you will continue to get referrals from the clients you already have. It is a very common problem that our graduates often experience that they have to cut back on clients. But clients are worth money to investors, so why throw them away?

2. Reach the Maximum Clients that One Full-Time Person Can Handle

20 clients is typically what is considered to be full-time (40 hours/week) for one person. You want to continue to grow your business, so you have one of a few options:

  • Have your spouse do data entry and basic Accounting and Bookkeeping work
  • Have a teenage child do basic data entry
  • Use an independent contractor at $10/hour to help. Your clients will pay you between $30 and $60 per hour, so you still net $20 to $50 per hour for the work that THEY do!

With someone to help with the data entry, you can continue to prospect for clients at the rate of 2 per month.

3. Plateau at 40 Clients

Because you and one other person can only service around 40 clients, you cannot service more clients than that without additional help. You can certainly use another contract accountant and continue to grow beyond 40 clients. For purposes of this example, we will just peak at 40 clients, though you are not limited to that number if you get help.

4. Cherry Pick the Best Clients and Cash Out the Rest

When you reach a point where you are beginning to have more clients than you can handle, it may be an ideal time to sell off a portion of your business, rather than turning clients away as most accountants do. Look over your list of clientele and pick out the clients that are most desirable. These include those that require the least amount of time to service, those that are easiest to get along with, or those in a targeted industry that you have special knowledge of. The rest you begin to service under a new company name, even a close alternate to the one that you use now. Preferably have a contractor bookkeeper service these less desirable accounts. That way, they continue to service them for your buyer. You can now sell the secondary company to an investor for 12-18 months worth of billings from those clients that you would likely have just dropped.

You get to keep the most profitable and enjoyable clients while selling off the excess. You will probably want to keep some of your clients, rather than selling the entire company. This way, you get cash now and continue to enjoy a revenue stream to support yourself.

Sell the new company with its 20 clients to an investor at this point. Many accountants want to purchase a functioning practice rather than start from scratch because they don’t know just how easy the process is. These are ideal to purchase the less desirable portion of your business.

When you sell an Accounting and Bookkeeping service, you will get paid for 12-18 months of client billings (what they paid you during that time). 20 clients generate on average $6,000 per month, so you will sell the service for between $72,000 and $108,000! Cha-ching! You cash in and still keep the 20 most desirable clients. You keep a $4,400/month income as well!

With $72,000 to $108,000 cash, you can pay off your debts and be able to live on much less than you do now. Maybe you can even pay off the balance of your house and never have a mortgage payment again! If retirement is in your not too distant future, invest this in a money market and reap the benefits.

5. Repeat the Process

You can repeat the build and flip cycle about every 18 months or so. Each time, you cash in $72,000 to $108,000! This is a very comfortable living that eliminates debt and gives an incredible income to play or invest with. What it buys you most is OPTIONS! If you have ever felt like a slave to your creditors, there is a real way to break out of the cycle and find true financial freedom for yourself and your family.

Management Alternate Strategy

Rather than cashing out some of your business, you may also choose to continue to grow your service, using cheap Bookkeeping contractors and just managing and growing your business. With as little as 2 contractor bookkeepers, you could be bringing in as much as $8,800/month, even AFTER paying your contractor Bookkeepers.

So where do we come up with that number? An average client will pay you $300/month. It takes 6-8 hours/month to service a typical client. If you pay a $10/hour bookkeeper to do the work for you, it costs at most $80/month (8 hours * $10/hour) to service that account. After you pay your $10/hour bookkeeper $80, you are left with $220 ($300 – $80) net profit. If your bookkeeper can service 20 clients, you make $4,400 per month ($220 * 20) net profit. If you have two bookkeepers working for you, double it to get $8,800 Per Month!

Month-By-Month Breakdown of Income Using This Strategy

Consult the chart below to see month-by-month how much you will make:

Number of Months Into Your Business Number of Clients
(gain 2 clients/month)
Monthly Income Total Earned So Far
1 2 $600 $400
2 4 $1,200 $1,600
3 6 $1,800 $3,400
4 8 $2,400 $5,800
5 10 $3,000 $8,800
6 12 $3,600 $12,400
7 14 $4,200 $16,600
8 16 $4,800 $21,400
9 18 $5,400 $26,800
10 20 $6,000 $32,800
11 22 $6,600 $39,400
12 24 $7,200 $46,600
13 26 $7,800 $54,400
14 28 $8,400 $62,800
15 30 $9,000 $71,800
16 32 $9,600 $81,400
17 34 $10,200 $91,600
18 36 $10,800 $102,400
19 38 $11,400 $113,800
20 40 $12,000 $125,800
21 40 $12,000 $137,800
22 40 $12,000 $149,800
23 40 $12,000 $161,800
24 40 $12,000 $173,800
25 40 $12,000 $185,800
26 40 $12,000 $197,800
27 40 $12,000 $209,800
28 40 $12,000 $221,800
29 40 $12,000 $233,800
30 40 $12,000 $245,800
31 40 $12,000 $257,800
32 40 $12,000 $269,800
33 40 $12,000 $281,800
34 40 $12,000 $293,800
35 40 $12,000 $305,800
36 40 $12,000
+
$72,000 to $108,000 for Flip =
$84,000 to $120,000
$317,800
+ Flip =
$389,800 to $437,800

Conclusion

36 months after starting your business, only gaining 2 clients per month, you will take in up to $437,800! That is the kind of life-changing income that most of can only dream of. The numbers are all there so that you can see for yourself. We at Universal Accounting® hate empty hype, and put none of it into this analysis. If you are ready to take control of your life and really make the kind of income that puts your financial goals within reach, today is when you need to get started to make your dreams your reality.

You Can Do This!

So what are you waiting for? Your financial future is in your own hands. When you start your own successful Accounting service, your success is your own. If you can find the courage to take the first step, we will give you the tools, support, and training you need to start your own profitable accounting and bookkeeping service.

Get Started Now!

PB - Professional Bookkeeper Program

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