In order to keep this site going (at no cost to you!) this guide may contain affiliate links.
Improving your life as a small business owner starts by making small but positive changes.
There are so many aspects of our lives that need to be taken care of: health, financial, social, personal and business.
Some days it can feel overwhelming trying to balance everything and still find enjoyment in your work. One of the aspects I’ve learned to successfully control is business finances, and that’s what I want to help you tackle today.
In my nearly 6 years of being self-employed, I’ve found that improving your life means learning to build a business that serves you — NOT the other way around.
Here’s how to improve your life as a small biz owner by implementing one small change. Something as simple as a business expense tracker can be integrated into your daily workflow and have a huge impact. Seriously!
What is a business expense tracker?
Say what? What exactly is a business expense tracker and how can it help improve your life? Stay with me! It’s simple really. You need a way to track business expenses and organize them into the correct categories.
Not only will this help your business grow and start paying you back for all your time and effort, but it will help you stay on the right side of the law, as well as save money on taxes. And who doesn’t want all of that?!
There are many different types of business expense trackers, including:
- Custom spreadsheets
- Online accounting programs
- Old-school desktop software
- Mobile apps
How to improve your life as a business owner
No one likes to sit at their desk all day organizing expenses and maximizing tax deductions. I get it. I REALLY do! As an ex-bookkeeper I’ve done my fair share of organizing bank transactions and balancing business books.
But a small business needs someone to pay close attention paid to these sort of details in order to survive. That’s the real truth of it!
Here are the 3 main benefits I’ve discovered from using the business expense tracker from QuickBooks Self-Employed.
1. Separate business and personal
I’ve said this before many times, but one of the most important aspects of being a self-employed business owner is separating business and personal banking.
If you read nothing else on my blog, PLEASE follow through with this advice.
Why, you ask? I’m sure you don’t want the IRS in your personal bank account, right? And I bet you hate answering questions about personal expenses when your CPA or bookkeeper asks? (Me too!)
This is one of the great things about separating everything, and QuickBooks Self-Employed offers this feature to help make your life easier. With their expense tracker, it’s SUPER easy to separate business and personal income and expenses — even if they’re in the same bank account.
Still, I do recommend that you open a separate checking account for business-related expenses. That way everything stays organized and there’s no confusion at tax time.
Even so, you can link all of your bank accounts and credit cards within QuickBooks Self-Employed and then organize the transactions accordingly. A simple “swipe right” or “swipe left” is all you have to do in the mobile app. Easy peasy!
2. Save time for what’s important
The main reason you quit your day job to be your own boss was to have more control over your time, right? That was my reason at least — and the fact that I didn’t want to tied down to my desk all the time. And I’m sure your reasons were similar.
By using the right accounting system you can reduce stress and save time for more important things. The better systems you have in place, the more time you have at your disposal.
It’s true, and over the years I’ve proven it. Now, I have time to do things I really enjoy — like having a picnic in the park with my husband.
That’s why I like using QuickBooks Self-Employed — it travels with me wherever I am. I can track business expenses on the go and stay on top of my money at the same time via the mobile app.
So give yourself a break and try QuickBooks Self-Employed, the first 30 days are free. You’ll thank me later!
3. Give yourself a raise
In other words, staying organized with your money could actually equate to giving yourself a raise. By maximizing your expense deductions and saving money on taxes, you’ll have more funds available for things on your bucket list.
Want to travel more? Invest in your business? Spend time with family and friends? Now you can!
Don’t underestimate the importance of tracking your business expenses and seeing where you can improve. Even for a numbers geek like me, I’ve seen real benefits from staying on top of my money. Just last year I able to cut my business expenses in half!
How to track every tiny business expense
Of course, there are other business expenses that need to be maximized — such as home office expenses, business miles traveled and work you do for clients.
Not to worry, QuickBooks Self-Employed has several other features that allows you to track every single expense:
- Mileage tracking
- Receipt snapping
- Simple invoicing
All of these features, along with the business expense tracker, are designed to help you maximize your expenses and save more money. All of which equals an improved life as a business owner!
I know that the initial idea of using an expense tracker for your business sounds boring. But the truth is that the boring things often give way to the fun things in life!
To sum it up, yes, you can improve your life and business by having a certain level of financial awareness. And for me that means using the QuickBooks Self-Employed business expense tracking feature.