In finance I’d say, it’s never too late to get your finances under control. I’ve always been really good at managing my finances, but with all the full-time travel, I had more problems keeping track of my business finances. So right now, today, there’s no better time than starting with more organized finances.
You can read right here how I manage my business finances and how much it costs to run a successful blog business. In my monthly income report, you’ll see how much I have coming in and how much goes out every month.
Getting started with accounting software
As you might know, I recommend a couple of accounting software here, but I wanted to shine a light today on one particularly because they’ve just announced a new feature you need to know about.
Online accounting software makes invoicing and billing simple. I can recommend using Freshbooks, check them out here. It’s specially designed accounting software for (online) small businesses. It’s possible to accept credit card payments on invoices (!), to create and customize your invoice, add your logo and personalize your thank you email. You can automate a lot, and let Freshbooks follow-up with clients or send out reminders. You can read a little bit more here or you can just get started now for free (plans start at $15 a month – something all self-respected professionals should be able to invest in their business).
I’m obsessed with finding the best time-tracking software, and this one makes it easy to not only track time, but also to invoice your time. Just start the timer, get to work and never think about it again (I mean, don’t forget to stop the timer!).
You can create an automatic bill for tracker hours, enjoy the overviews (weekly and monthly!) or break down your days. I love to do this because it shows you how you use your time and where you can improve productivity. I discuss the process of growing your income by tracking time here.
Also, check out my productivity crash course
How to offer your (potential) clients more insights into your process while pitching
Estimates allow you to create and send an approximate outline of your Items or Services to your Client for approval before beginning the work. The client can then Accept the Estimate for approval before converting it into an Invoice, or you can go ahead and convert it yourself to start collecting payment (or apply a Deposit on it)!
There’s a new feature in town (but it’s only available to those on Plus and Premium plans) that helps you bring in new business as a whole new experience.
Proposals are similar to Estimates but different. FreshBooks’ new Proposals feature helps small business owners win new jobs faster with professional-looking proposals. I always get lost in proposals and keeping up, creating and organizing them. It’s so important, and therefore you need to put a lot of effort in them. With proposals you focus on the value you’re offering a client as opposed to just the services or costs that you might find in an estimate. Explain the value that you’re giving the client, like what problems you solve, the process description and a timeline.
You can sign-up for Freshbooks here to check it out, it’s free for 30-days via this link. Just play around with the settings and all functions and if you like it, get started for just $15 a month.
Just remember, proposals are only available for Plus or Premium plans. So when your trial expires, if you’ve upgraded to a Plus or Premium plan that supports Proposals, you’ll be able to continue creating and editing your existing Proposals. If you’ve decided to upgrade to the Lite plan instead (where Proposals are not available), you’ll still be able to view and edit only your existing Proposals.