Accounting Services For Small Business – Services You Should Look For

As your company grows, the ability of taking care of all the tasks necessary will become more difficult. At that point when customers start pouring in, you will realize that delegating some of the duties is essential. Most small companies will use one accountant or none at all so some transactions can be entered incorrectly and mistakes made. Accounting services for small business in those cases allows you to focus on the growth of your company while they do most of the work. Hiring accounting services for small business is essential to ensure that all of the numbers are correct and that your company runs smoothly.BookkeepingBookkeeping should probably be the first of the many accounting services for small business which you should be looking for. Bookkeeping is essential to every business, especially when it comes to tracking of current and past transactions. Without proper bookkeeping, accounting can become nearly impossible, especially when doing reconciliation of numbers or during tax season. Believe it or not, bookkeeping can be one of the main reasons why some businesses fail. The reason for that is if you do not know how much you are spending and bringing in, your profits could be minimized and necessary changes overlooked.Financial AdviceAnother good service that you should be looking for is the offer of financial advice. While not every company that offers accounting services for small business will give you financial advice, the best ones will. This type of advice is important, especially when you are having trouble separating your personal financial matters from business financial matters. The companies that provide accounting services for small business will help you not only control your credit file for your business, but they will also give you the necessary financial advice, in most cases free of charge.TaxesYour taxes are very important to the success of your business. Keeping control of them while using the tax benefits that you may be able to get is therefore another thing to look for in a company that offers accounting services for small business. Reporting of tax returns must be done right; otherwise you can be at risk of IRS penalties. If you outsource all the tax work to an accounting firm, you will have teams of accountants working for you as opposed to just one. Keep in mind that not every accountant is familiar with tax returns so choose wisely.Financial StatementsJust like not every accountant is familiar with the different types of tax reporting, the same happens with the update of your books. When you use accounting services for small business, you will again get a team as opposed to just one person. That means that you have a better chance of keeping everything under control. Financial statements and their release should be done by using accounting services from an experienced company. Financial statements can be a bit more complicated so trying to do them yourself may result in mistakes and a lot of headaches while an experienced company can do it almost as second nature.

Local SEO – Why Your Business Needs It

If you’re a local business owner, who hasn’t yet made the transition to trade online, you’re about to learn why you need to adapt to amp your business revenue up to the next level.Search engines are continually adapting their search results to better match consumer demand with the local business services their users are looking for online. That’s not just from home computers either. There’s all sorts of mobile apps that are being adapted to search results as well.Imagine yourself out for a night on the town. It’s been a busy night. Big crowds. You try to get a taxi to come and pick you up and take you home. The service you normally use is fully booked. You need another service to come and get you.You pull out your iPhone, Blackberry or whatever mobile device you have with Internet access on it. Load up a search. (A lot of phones default to the Google search engine, as that’s compatible with nearly every mobile device)You would search for something like:Taxi service in Conway Fl
…or you might even type in the full word Florida.The results you get on the front page will be from those companies using methods to let the search engines know about their business, where they are located and a bit of information on each of the services available. It’s how they are getting Google to tell people online about where to find them and what they do etc.Now, think of yourself as a taxi service company in that area who hasn’t adapted to the new way of modern technology. You’re still relying on people knowing your telephone number from business cards and local ads around the area.You’d be losing business left, right and center!Granted, this example is for a taxi service in a local area. Chances are, you have a different type of business. Maybe a local grocery store, an accountancy, a dental practice…whatever type of business you have, think of someone living around your neighborhood and what they would type into a search engine to find the service you have. People find companies around you like this all the time!Chances are, there’s going to be services around your area or in close proximity to you that can meet those new clients from the search term they put into Google to find them. That’s more business you could have.It’s called local SEO (local search engine optimization). It’s a fancy way of saying you have your business listed in the search engines for your new prospects to find you.When you search for nearly all local services, you’ll find a lot of business listings. These are called local citations. They’re part of local SEO strategies, which are implemented for business owners, helping people know where to find them. It’s how businesses are generating new leads and clients everyday. (The ones who have adapted for online marketing anyway.)There are a few things that you can do yourself, to get your company noticed online. Using your business name on social media websites is one way that you can let your customers know about your service. You can also brand that social media account to your business across most of the offline media channels.That’s also part of an optimization campaign, which involves local SEO. Not the whole of it though. There’s a lot of things that need to be done to make sure that search engines recommend your business to searchers looking for the service or product that your company provides.Social media was mentioned earlier as that’s an integral part of a local SEO campaign. It helps to verify the legitimacy of your company. Search providers like Google use the social signals from your customers actions online as a way to gauge the pages they show on the top positions for any given search terms.A local SEO campaign is carried out using various techniques to ensure that when a potential customer searches for your companies service on a search engine site shows up on the front page results they see.If you’ve ever searched for anything on Google before, you’ll probably know the degree of relevancy you place on the sites which are shown to you.When’s the last time you had to go to page 2 of a search query if you didn’t find a match initially?If you haven’t, try it!Chances are high that your search is going to have an interesting result based on your search term.Why do I say “interesting”?Because built right into that search is a function that lets users see what their friends are recommending. This has only just been rolled out and it’s one way to ensure that you get your business to the very top of that page – by having your customers let their friends and families know about their experience with your company.The results are both relevant and personalized to tailor the search to the person looking for the information, by letting their friends tell them that they liked your service. It’s word of mouth marketing integrated into the online marketplace.Word of mouth marketing happens offline, but it’s not always a suitable time to mention.Sometimes people could be discussing a service they used a long time ago. That’s only with one person. It’s not likely for someone to go around telling as many people as they can how they enjoyed a service from x company. It happens when people ask.Nowadays, Google is the place where people are asking about services they are needing and products they are considering buying. So they search for it there. It doesn’t matter that it’s been a long time since their friend spoke about it. Through local SEO, your company gets listed there with a personal recommendation from your previous customers experience. The search results are personalized to each individual user.Do you think that result might peak your interest a bit more now that your friend is recommending it to you?Probably. It certainly makes a business listing stand out more.The personalized search results are done through a new roll out that Google has initiated to help local businesses get more customers from online search. It’s taking word of mouth marketing from around your community and placing that same principle into the online marketplace where friends are recommending businesses they’ve tried.This is why local SEO is something offline businesses need to get themselves not only noticed online, but recommended through word of mouth too.

Social Media for Small Businesses

Social media has become an integral part of our day-to-day lives. Businesses of all size and shapes have started making the most of available mediums. Today we will try to anatomize tips on social media for small businesses. There are a plethora of small businesses eyeing social medium to promote their business/services. However, majorly these small businesses are failing or not being able to make optimum use of social media for their business growth. There are many theories and strategies on how to effectively use social media for established brands, but the topic social media for small businesses is seldom addressed. According to Digital state of eMarketing India 2017 Octane Research:60% small businesses promote their business on social media. 50% focus on SEO and 35% use multichannel marketing funnel.
70% small businesses consider content strategy as their primary marketing activity.
52% business owners are using social media as to efficiently address customer engagement.
More than 20% of business owners said that they are making 50% plus profit using social media.The primary reasons for the low turnout are uncertainty on an application of social media, calculating return on investment and persuade employees/stakeholders to clinch social media. Hence it is important to address the elephant in the room and analyze how beneficial is Social media for small businesses.Social media for small businesses is a great way for emerging businesses to generate lead and build a reputation. If regularly updated, social media can deliver more results as compared to traditional mediums. Social media for small businesses gives brands an edge of control over the content that they want to post. Also, since social media is a two-way dialogue process, it helps businesses to instantly identify what is benefitting them. Social media for small businesses also helps generate Word of Mouth, which is one of the best tools for emerging businesses.Social Media for small businesses | 10 Tips to effectively use Social MediaDefine your Target Audience
The first and foremost important part that small businesses should focus on is to define their target audience. This helps small businesses to device their social media strategy accordingly. The target audience should be defined basis age group, sex, location, users’ online behaviors, their likes, interests, and preferences. For niche products, business owners can even target users based on their birthdays, anniversaries and important milestone. Audience targeting plays a very crucial role in the outcome of the results. For e.g.: a local shop selling footwear should not target users with interest in entertainment. The shop definitely won’t get the desired results.Set achievable goals
Overnight success is a myth. Small businesses must understand this basic fact. Generally, when a new business starts selling on social media, there is palpable excitement is achieving more than set targeted sales. Businesses need to set goals which are upwards and forward. To achieve enormous goals, small businesses start updating social feed with multiple updates in shorter duration. This leads to user’s disinterest in the product/service. The set goals should be in sync with brand’s core capabilities and expertise. For e.g.: if a business is into selling shoes, they shouldn’t set a goal to repair maximum shoes in their area.Choose the right medium
By now everyone knows, social media is for free. Even paid campaigns can be conducted at a relatively low cost as compared to traditional mediums. It is in this scenario, that we often see small businesses jumping the bandwagon and creating profiles on all the available platforms. Creating social profile doesn’t hamper brand image, but aggressively promoting a brand on wrong platforms can lead to brand losing its potential customers. Hence it is advisable for SME’s to first identify the right platform through which they can maximize their business. For e.g.: If a shoe selling brand tries to aggressively sell on LinkedIn, they won’t get a plausible response as compared to promotions on Facebook/Instagram.Promote your core product/services
Since each and every business is riding in the social media wave, it is important for a them to promote their core product/services. Nowadays, we see a lot of businesses promoting their services as well as promoting peripheral products/services, which revolves around their core product/services. Majority of the times, this SME’s doesn’t have capabilities to fulfill a requirement, which can lead to a bad word of mouth for their business on social media platforms. Let us go back to our example; if a shoe seller is trying to aggressively promote socks instead of shoes, it is not going to benefit the business in the long run.Create quality content
Now that we have covered the topics of identifying the target audience, setting achievable goals, choosing the right medium and promoting the right product/services let us now take a look at the type of content a business should promote on their social pages. A business should always focus on creating good quality content rather than not-good quantity content. Even if the business updates their page once in a day as long as it is relevant to their business, advocates about its core products send across a clear message it is considered as a good quality content. Antagonistically, if a business posts multiple updates which aren’t even relevant to the business’s products and services leads to users considering the business as fake/spam. Also, new businesses should try and refrain from promoting other businesses on their social platforms initially.Create a content calendar
Making a small business successful on social platforms is no small task. It takes a lot of efforts for the businesses to keep up their conversion ratio. One such effort is to create a content calendar. Small businesses must anticipate important events and create a content calendar accordingly. Ideally, a content calendar must be planned a month in advance but an even weekly content calendar is highly recommended. This helps businesses to avoid any last minute hassles, strategize much more effectively and it also helps in creating curiosity amongst its loyal fans/customers.Test and re-test
Social media is highly unpredictable. The content a business posts today, might not work for tomorrow. Hence, small businesses must always test their content before publishing it on their pages. Testing content also applies to the platform a small business chooses to promote. Small business owners must always don the consumer’s hat before posting about any product feature, updates, schemes or offers. A consumer’s perspective is the key when testing the content that has to be uploaded.Look for inspiration
Small businesses must always look for inspiration from a competitor who is successful in the same category. Copy pasting competitors idea or content is not the answer. Small businesses must look for the kind of content its competitors are putting up and derive their own strategies subsequently. Inspiring content/stories always make a business to strive to create their own content that is appreciated by one and all. It helps in increasing brand consideration, brand visibility thereby increasing conversions for the business.Calculate ROI
Even a small promotional budget is not justifiable if there is no mechanism to calculate its return on investment. It is more important in case of small businesses. It is very important for a small business to keep a tab on the budgets allocated to any promotions and the subsequent ROI related to it. If a certain promotion is not doing well or the business is not getting desired results, the brand custodian can always look for other platforms to generate quality conversions.Analyze and Re-strategize
There can be umpteen instances where a particular campaign/promotion might not work for a business. That doesn’t mean that the promotion is wrong or the product/service is not good. Doing an analysis of the campaign is as important as setting the objective. This helps the business to formulate their upcoming strategies in more effective ways. At the end of every campaign, brands must note down the learning’s from that campaign and identify if the content/idea was appreciated by their fans or not. This helps businesses to skip the non-performing updates from future communications.Final Thoughts
Social media for small businesses is definitely beneficial and fruitful. If followed correctly, small businesses can benefit tremendously from the power of social media promotions.