We all want to be the “Kool Kid”, don’t we? Some of us are after the latest fashion. Some need the newest computer. Some are all about a new car with all the bells and whistles. Give me all three and add the latest smart phone, please. The coolest things that have me struggling to keep up at the moment are APPs. Those software applications that you download to a mobile device. According to statistics, the number of apps available for download in leading app stores as of the first quarter of 2018 is over 5 million. Android users are able to choose between 3.8 million apps. Apple’s App Store has second place with 2 million available apps. Among that 5 million are hundreds that will help you with your bookkeeping. For the small business owner it’s heaven. There is even web based software that makes it easy to create an invoice from anywhere and get paid fast. That’s the most important thing. Getting paid? Right? FreshBooks, Zero, QuickBooks On Line (QBO), Wave, 17 Hats, Kashoo, and Slick Pie to name a few. Some are even free. There are even more applications that you can connect for payroll, shopping carts for on line sales, and merchant services for credit card processing. You can get paid fast from anywhere. All of this is so Kool! You wow your customer with the speed of payment and watch the money roll in. It’s all very pretty from the outside. Until someone ask you for a financial report. Depending on which of this “toys” you chose, you may not be able to produce financial reports. The more robust ones like Zero and QBO will. The others are about getting paid, tracking total revenue and expenses but they don’t put those numbers in a report equal to real financial reports. If your business is really more like a hobby that’s fine. But if you’re planning to grow a real business you might want to start with something made for real businesses. Changing in the middle is a mess. The backside of these applications is a nightmare for catchup and clean up. The type of work your accountant or bookkeeper needs to do takes almost twice as long. Which means you’re going to pay twice as much. How does free sound now? The maker of QuickBooks On Line, also makes a desktop version. Just plain ole QuickBooks Desktop. I know what you’re thinking. I can’t do all the cool things with QuickBooks Desktop. Oh yes, you can. You can even host remotely so you can access from anywhere and use on your laptop, tablet, and IPad. It will connect to banks and credit card companies to download transactions. It will sync with several software apps to make things easier. You can send invoices with a link to pay by credit card, connect payroll, and much more. Before you sign up for the coolest, easiest, free accounting software out there and start entering invoices consider these 5 things.
- Will this cool application provide you with the reports you need to grow your business?
- Will someone teach you how to use the cool tool correctly for your bookkeeping needs?
- If I have a problem with it, will someone be there to answer all my questions?
- Will that someone speak English?
- Will is grow with my company or do I have to start over?
Sometimes being the Kool Kid means being the smart kid. The basic bookkeeping of your business is the most important thing you’ll learn. Use the right tool and get the right training from day one. You’ll save money and time. Which is what you were trying to do in the first place. Right?