Why apps are crucial to small business accounting

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You might be surprised to learn there are numerous apps that will allow you to scale your business and enhance productivity by removing the hassle you encounter in your administrative processes.

According to research from Intuit, nearly 70% of small businesses realize the value of using apps to streamline business functions, but 41% say they are unsure which apps would be most useful to their business.

Integrating apps allows you to ease three main processes related to your accounting:

  • Eliminate data entry
  • Customize your solution beyond accounting
  • Stay organized

Apps can help you eliminate data entry in your accounting process

Apps can help you automate a variety of other functions that will make accounting a snap by eliminating onerous data entry and other tedious tasks.

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  • Banking: More than 15,000 financial institutions in the United States and Canada currently offer apps that allow for automatic downloads of bank transactions. Use them to streamline your accounting and make sure you’re continually on top of your cash flow.
  • Time tracking: If you, or your employees, bill clients by the hour, tracking time accurately is money in your pocket. After all, email communication and project management time accumulates. Alternatively, you don’t want to overestimate your time and have a client question your bill. A time-tracking app makes it easy to toggle between clients so your invoice writes itself.
  • Expense management: Whether you bill your clients or write expenses off at the end of the year, you need to categorize those expenses for easier tracking. An app that tracks expenses can remove the frustrations of managing cost – and simultaneously ensure you recoup everything you are owed,

Apps can help you customize your accounting solution

Your accounting software is a framework. Apps empower you to tailor your accounting process for your exact business and circumstance:

  • Industry-specific functions: A dance studio managing its schedule and class sign up has very different needs from a restaurant that’s tracking employee time sheets and tips.
  • Invoicing: Use apps that will create accurate invoices your clients will be more likely to pay rapidly. The better your invoice, the faster money will be in your bank account.
  • Employee Payment: Whether you have salaried or hourly employees – or a combination of both –there are apps that help you review and approve their payments so they are paid accurately and on time.

Apps can help stay organized and analyze your data

We are besieged with data. Collecting it is one thing; using it efficiently is another. Here are a few ways that apps can help you better apply data and stay more organized.

  • Customer segments: A commonly accepted principle is that 80% of sales come from 20% of customers. But it can be hard to know who those customers are. Contact management apps provide insight to help you identify your top performers and who you should spend more time cultivating.
  • Lead management: Not sure which marketing techniques are the most effective? An app that tracks inbound customers allows you to fine-tune your strategy so you’re applying marketing dollars where they’ll have the best ROI.
  • Work orders: Whether it’s a bid for future work or an existing work order, there are apps that aggregate photos and information to adjust your estimates and in-the-field processes so can make more money on each job.

Extending functionality of your accounting process by integrating apps is the icing on the cake.

This article was produced by the QuickBooks Resource Center and syndicated by MediaFeed.org.

Featured Image Credit: iStock/jacoblund.

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