Money is the lifeblood of your business and the measure of its success. What’s the best way to keep it flowing? Here are eight financial resolutions for your business to consider:
Resolution 1: “I will start accepting mobile and digital payments.”
Accepting digital payments makes your business more efficient. Plus, customers like the convenience. In 2018, 46 percentof small businesses accepted digital payments, up from 36 percentin 2017, according to Bank of America Merchant Services’ 2018 Small Business Payments Spotlight. Almost60 percentexpect customers’ use of digital payments to increase in the next five years.
Resolution 2: “I will protect my business’s financial data.”
Cybercrime is on the rise, putting both your business’s and your customers’ financial data at risk. Among small businesses that experienced a data breach in the past year, Bank of AmericaMerchant Services reports, almost 40 percentsuffered financial losses of more than $50,000. Protect your business by updating security software and regularly training employees in the importance of cybersecurity.
Resolution 3: “I will keep an eye on my cash flow.”
You need to review your cash flow at least once a month, or you could find yourself in an unexpected cash crunch. Use an accounting app that makes cash flow monitoring super simple (for example, QuickBooks® has cash flow monitoring tools built in).
Resolution 4: “I will plan ahead for financing needs.”
Many experts predict a recession within the next two years. The time to get financing for your business is when you don’tneed it—so even if you don’t need money today, research your options now. Create sales and financial forecasts to estimate your financial needs in the next one, three or five years. Then investigate options you can have at the ready, such as a business line of credit or a new business credit cardthat offers low interest rates and rewards.
Resolution 5: “I will make the most of my accountant.”
Your accountant is more than just a bookkeeper or tax preparer. He or she should be a true partner in your business, providing insights that make your company more successful. Set up regular meetings with your accountant to assess issues such as how to save on your taxes, the best ways to finance equipment purchases, if you can afford to add employees, how to plan short-term and long-term goals, etc.
Resolution 6: “I will charge what I’m worth.”
It’s a new year—a good time to review prices. Examine your costs and profit margins for the past year. How do they compare to industry benchmarks? When was the last time you raised prices? Owners of service businesses are often reluctant to charge what their services are really worth, fearing customers will jump ship. However, in most cases, clients and customers are looking for value, not rock-bottom prices, which may imply less-than-stellar services.
Resolution 7: “I will build value in my business.”
Are you thinking about selling your business in the foreseeable future? The number of businesses changing hands is soaring, BizBuySellreports. Whether or not selling your business is on the horizon, building its value is always a good idea. Start by looking at your business as an outsider would. Review its financials and take stock of assets and liabilities. Your accountant can help you estimate your business’s value and discuss ways to increase it.
Resolution 8: “I will save for retirement.”
If you’re putting all your money back into your business, what happens when it’s time to retire? Make 2019 the year you start saving for your future. SIMPLE IRA, SEP IRA and 401(k) plans may be available to your business. (Bonus: offering employees a retirement plan helps attract and retain workers.) Visit the IRS website to learn more about retirement plans for small businessesand consult a personal financial planner about the best option for you.
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About Rieva Lesonsky
Rieva Lesonsky is CEO and Co-founder of GrowBiz Media, a custom content and media company focusing on small business and entrepreneurship, and the blog SmallBizDaily.com. A nationally known speaker and authority on entrepreneurship, Rieva has been covering America’s entrepreneurs for more than 30 years. Before co-founding GrowBiz Media, Lesonsky was the long-time Editorial Director of Entrepreneur Magazine. Lesonsky has appeared on hundreds of radio shows and numerous local and national television programs, including the Today Show, Good Morning America, CNN, The Martha Stewart Show and Oprah.
Lesonsky regularly writes about small business for numerous websites and for corporations targeting entrepreneurs. Many organizations have recognized Lesonsky for her tireless devotion to helping entrepreneurs. She served on the Small Business Administration’s National Advisory Council for six years, was honored by the SBA as a Small Business Media Advocate and a Woman in Business Advocate, and received the prestigious Lou Campanelli award from SCORE. She is a long-time member of the Business Journalists Hall of Fame.
Bank of America, N.A. engages with Rieva Lesonsky to provide informational materials for your discussion or review purposes only. Rieva Lesonsky is a registered trademark, used pursuant to license. The third parties within articles are used under license from Rieva Lesonsky. Consult your financial, legal and accounting advisors, as neither Bank of America, its affiliates, nor their employees provide legal, accounting and tax advice.
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