6 Reasons Good Bookkeeping Matters for Small Businesses

person multitasking

Small business owners wear a lot of hats. That’s why it can be daunting to realize bookkeeping is a critical task.

Skipping the chore of recording financial transactions and leaving it all to your accountant at tax time won’t cut it. Professional bookkeeping help allows you to organize, store and analyze financial information. With this information, you can accurately draw conclusions about the health of your business and plan strategically.

But, that’s not the only reason bookkeeping matters. The IRS requires you to report:

  • Gross receipts
  • Purchases
  • Expenses
  • Assets
  • Travel, transportation, entertainment and gifts
  • Employment taxes (if applicable)

Without accurate bookkeeping, it’s hard to track and report the necessary information to the government. Inaccurate reporting or failing to file can lead to penalties and fines.

Here’s how an expert Cincinnati bookkeeping service can help your business grow:

1. By Keeping your Records Organized

When it comes time to budget, apply for loans or grants, or see if you’re turning a profit, bookkeeping allows you to find the necessary information quickly.

Good bookkeeping gathers all your financial information into one easy-to-read system.

2. By Giving you Information to Make Wise Decisions

Business owners constantly need to make decisions about the future of their company, such as whether/when to apply for a loan, submit a grant application, hire new staff, buy new equipment, open or close a location, etc.

Business owners and their trusted bookkeeper—whether in-house or outsourced–can evaluate financial data to make informed decisions. Look through monthly financial statements to determine if your can make the change you are contemplating.

3. By Putting Financial Data at Your Fingertips

The decisions you make are only as good as your information. By having organized information, you can create accurate financial records. Those records allow you to perform a variety of tasks.

For example, if you needed to know how much you spent last year on advertising, you could gather up all the appropriate receipts and spend hours adding every dollar. Or, you can record each transaction in your books as you go (or have your bookkeeper do it) and pull the data instantly when you need it.

4. By Simplifying Tax Filing

Tax time can be stressful. But, if your in-house bookkeeper or outsourced bookkeeping firm has kept accurate records, they can give your accountant exactly what is needed with one email.

Instead of going through a pile of documents, invoices and receipts, you can present organized statements to your accountant, saving time and money.

And if you ever face an audit, well-ordered books will streamline the process.

5. By Making Planning Easier

With clear and accurate records, you can review past information to make a plan for the coming year. Questions like the following can be quickly answered:

  • Did I have a record year, good or bad?
  • Did sales go up, stay steady or fall?
  • Did my suppliers increase their costs?
  • Which clients were most profitable?
  • Which locations?
  • Which months?

When it comes time to budget and plan vacations, you need to know how your business performed in the prior year. Overspending shows up on your books, and so do cost-cutting measures.

6. By Helping You Make Your Case to Investors

Businesses need money to grow. That funding can come in the form of owner’s equity, grants, business loans and/or investments. But grant-makers, banks and investors will want a good idea of your business performance before they will take a risk on you.

They will demand up-to-date, accurate, accessible information. If you don’t have well-kept books and financial statements, your data may not be available when you need it.