4 Bookkeeping Lessons for Any Business Owner

Whether you’re small, c-suite, or enterprise: bookkeeping and accounting are important for any business. Bad books can lead to overpaid taxes, out of control expenses, and in the worst-case scenario… Legal ramifications or debts.

In November 2019 on the Google My Business Problems series, we had the opportunity to learn why bookkeeping is so important for businesses from Julie Shopa of Clarity Finances in Florida. During our interview, Julie answered a slew of hard-hitting questions that illustrate the importance of keeping books CORRECTLY. 

Here’s what we learned:

You Need to Hire a Quickbooks Pro Advisor

If you’re using your Quickbooks to manage your bookkeeping and accounting, you need to hire a Certified Quickbooks Pro Advisor. Quickbooks is easy to use incorrectly if you’re untrained. Pro Advisors are trained to understand the program and optimize the program to help streamline operations. 

If your books are being tracked incorrectly- you’re going to end up paying taxes on the money you haven’t made. Worse yet, you’re going to pay for the help to straighten your books. According to Dave Ramsey, over 2.2 million taxpayers overpaid. Don’t be one of them! Hiring a Quickbooks Pro Advisor will save you time, money, and heartache. 

You Can’t Afford Not to Have a Bookkeeper

As we mentioned in the introduction, bookkeeping is essential to functioning properly (and legally). There are many different ways to make bookkeeping affordable. More often than not, you will be able to find a professional that can what you’re trying to do in a fraction of the time. 

Choose a provider than can:

  • Grow with you
  • Offer support
  • Is a Quickbooks Pro Advisors

Consider the value of your time. How many hours do you spend trying to clean your books? How much does an hour of your time cost? If you hired a professional, you could gain precious hours back. More importantly, the cost of bad information is much higher. 

Review Your Books at Least Once a Month

At a minimum, you need to be looking at your reports on a monthly basis. Do your checks and balances. Make sure that you are regularly reconciling your accounts. If you’d like to increase the cadence, limit this to bi-weekly. Compare previous months and take note of trends. 

With these reports, sit down with your bookkeeper and management team. Discuss the findings. Talk about the trends. This is a good way to unify operations and secure growth within your business. You’ll figure out what is working, what’s not, and what needs to change a lot quicker when you are able to attach products, services, and labor costs to a dollar value. We call this practice ROI protection. 

Don’t Hire Friends and Family to Do Your Bookkeeping

It’s tempting to hire a friend or family. After all, they’re typically willing to help us cut costs and work at lower wages. Though this may be okay for some design work, it’s not okay when it comes to your bookkeeping. Not only can this create contention between you and loved ones, but it can also pose a variety of unique problems. 

Here are a few examples:

  • Here’s the worst-case scenario: Julie had a client that needed their books reviewed. Their daughter had been doing their bookkeeping. We discovered that she had embezzled over ten thousand dollars. 
  • Here’s the best: Your aunt is doing the books alone. She has been overworked lately and hasn’t been keeping the books straight. Now your taxes are due. Worse yet, you’ve found she didn’t have the skills needed to do perform the task. 

Long story short? Opt for a professional. 

Your Books are the Foundation of Your Business

No matter how small bookkeeping may seem, it plays a very real role in your business. Not only does it tell you how successful your business is, but it also keeps your tax bill in check. Don’t overlook its importance. Instead, hire a certified Quickbooks pro advisor (that you aren’t related to) and set monthly finance meetings. If you need help, turn to professionals like Julie Shopa who can grow with you throughout your business journey.

Want to talk to My Clone Solution? Send us a message here and we’ll get back to you in 1 business day.

 

What is the Difference Between SEO, SEM and PPC?

What is the Difference Between SEO, SEM and PPC?

SEO, SEM, and PPC are all acronyms that are thrown around pretty heavily in the marketing world. But do you actually know what they mean to you and your business? In this episode of Google My Business Problems, we’re joined by Allyzon from Cast Haste to talk about the difference between SEO, SEM, and PPC.

SEO & SEM

We’re going to start with the two that live together the most, and those are SEM and SEO. 

SEM stands for search engine marketing and entails everything you do from an offsite perspective to increase the organic traffic value of your website. This includes Paid Ads at the top of a Google search. 

SEO or search engine optimization is the art of optimizing your website to communicate with the search engines and reach your target users. This is where you take the time to figure out keywords for your posts and optimize your site performance. You want to make sure your site loads quickly so people don’t leave before a page loads. You lose customers with every additional second it takes your page to load. You’ll never find them if you don’t relate to their search. Both aspects are extremely important for generating a great user experience on your site.

What is PPC?

PPC is another aspect of SEM. Pay per click advertisements can include the Display network, the Search network, and more. In PPC, you’re paying a price per click. To do PPC well, you want to have a low cost per click and qualified users. 

To Make it Simple: SEO is in your control because it’s what you do with your website. SEM and PPC are what you do to drive paid traffic to your website. Both are good strategies if you have your budgeting done correctly, and the best websites use a clever mix of all three.

How Can You Use All of These to Succeed?

All of these can be used to your advantage if you want to succeed online.  SEO is used to optimize your user experience through keyword intent, page speed, and user experience. SEM is used to improve your ability to get eyes on your site using paid ads or links from other publications. PPC is the keyword-driven segment of SEM where you pay when users click on your links from other websites your ad is displayed on. Each has its time and place for success online, but one can’t really be done successfully without the others.

The best place to start is with SEO optimization. By making sure your basics are cover, you can ensure your consumers have a great experience. When your site is fast and loaded with relevant, keyword-rich content, you can start to expand. Since you have a fast site, you will convert more with your customers, especially on an e-commerce site. That means you will get more potential out of your ads when you start to back your presence with money.

What is Onpage SEO?

What is Onpage SEO?

 

We’re back with another episode of Google My Business Problems and we’re still talking SEO with Allyzon from Cast Haste. Today she’s answering the question: What is Onpage SEO? Let’s dive in. 

What is Onpage SEO? How is it different from Offpage? 

In short: Onpage SEO is everything you do on your web page (or website). Offpage is what you do outside of your website (such as backlinking). To perfect your onpage SEO, you need to address every element you can. This includes, but isn’t limited to:

  1. Page titles
  2. Meta descriptions
  3. A clean URL
  4. Image alt texts
  5. Limiting paragraphs to 2-3 sentences
  6. Subheadings
  7. Optimize image sizes

When you are writing your content, make sure that these 7 items are taken care of. When it comes to best practices for onpage seo, you want to make sure your keywords are in the page title, URL, alt text, subheadings, and meta descriptions. If you place your keyword and synonyms in these spots, your content will have a higher value.

Image optimization extremely important, too. From compression rates to properly sizing the image for the page, taking the time to optimize your images will help your page load faster. The faster load times and smaller page sizes from properly optimized images will net you huge brownie points with the Google bots.

Site-Wide Onpage SEO

On a more site-wide level, it’s important to think about your website’s SEO overall. Make sure you are doing the following with your website:

  1. Have a site map
  2. Are using an SEO Plugin like Yoast or All in One SEO 
  3. Ask Google to index the page
  4. Are using a caching plugin like WPRocket 

Think of it this way: The more time you spend on optimization, the more time and effort you save Google as it crawls your page. More importantly, conducting onpage SEO allows you to accurately assess whether or not your pages are truly serving your readers. When you put all the piece of the puzzle together, you get a page that truly becomes an asset to your site. If you can optimize all of your content this way, you’re going to see the benefit in the search results. 

What Are Backlinks? Should You Pay for Them?

What Are Backlinks? Should You Pay for Them?

Today we’re talking with Allyzon from Cast Haste about a word that gets thrown around a lot when we’re talking SEO: backlinks. If you’ve found yourself wondering `What are backlinks?’ this is the episode of Google My Business Problems to bookmark. 

What are Backlinks?

Backlinks go by a lot of different names. Some refer to the process as link building and others refer to it as guest posting. In short, a backlink is any time a website (outside of your own) links back to your website. These backlinks function like ‘votes’ and the more ‘votes’ you get on your website, the more traffic you’re going to see. In some cases, you may even see increases in your keyword rankings. 

Ready to start earning backlinks? Here’s a quick overview of the process:

  1. Find websites that are popular in your niche and have some of the same keywords as you. 
  2. Verify that they have better traffic and domain authority than you. 
  3. Add them to a master list. 
  4. Reach out to them. Ask if they are accepting blog posts. In some cases, publications have their guest posting guidelines readily available.

You’ll find very quickly that many publications are open to guest posts- though some may want to charge you a fee. When working on guest posts, your progress will only move as fast as you do. 

… Should You Pay for Them?

If you check Google’s search quality guidelines, the answer says no. But they’re assuming that you’re paying a bulk service to buy you backlinks you wouldn’t otherwise earn. You’ll quickly find that when it comes to working with high-end publications they’ll charge a fee. This is to compensate the editor for their time spent. As you can imagine, any website with 1 million readers is going to get about 100 inquiries a day for guest posting. 

If you’re going to hire an agency to do link building for you, understand that it’s not a cheap service. More importantly, make sure you understand how they acquire their backlinks. Don’t get conned into paying for backlinks from spammy sites. The best companies will simply take over the outreach process for you, and show you the sites they plan to pitch to ahead of time. 

What Are Backlinks? Should You Pay for Them?

What Are Backlinks? Should You Pay for Them?

Today we’re talking with Allyzon from Cast Haste about a word that gets thrown around a lot when we’re talking SEO: backlinks. If you’ve found yourself wondering `What are backlinks?’ this is the episode of Google My Business Problems to bookmark. 

What are Backlinks?

Backlinks go by a lot of different names. Some refer to the process as link building and others refer to it as guest posting. In short, a backlink is any time a website (outside of your own) links back to your website. These backlinks function like ‘votes’ and the more ‘votes’ you get on your website, the more traffic you’re going to see. In some cases, you may even see increases in your keyword rankings. 

Now that we know what backlinks are, are you ready to start earning backlinks? Here’s a quick overview of the process:

  1. Find websites that are popular in your niche and have some of the same keywords as you. 
  2. Verify that they have better traffic and domain authority than you. 
  3. Add them to a master list. 
  4. Reach out to them. Ask if they are accepting blog posts. In some cases, publications have their guest posting guidelines readily available.

You’ll find very quickly that many publications are open to guest posts, but some may want to charge you a fee. When working on guest posts, your progress will only move as fast as you do. 

… Should You Pay for Them?

If you check Google’s search quality guidelines, the answer says no. But, they’re assuming that you’re paying a bulk service to buy you backlinks you wouldn’t otherwise earn. You’ll quickly find that when it comes to working with high-end publications they’ll charge a fee. This is to compensate the editor for their time spent. As you can imagine, any website with 1 million readers is going to get about 100 inquiries a day for guest posting. 

If you’re going to hire an agency to do link building for you, understand that it’s not a cheap service. More importantly, make sure you understand how they acquire their backlinks. Don’t get conned into paying for backlinks from spammy sites.

How Much Should SEO Cost?

How Much Should SEO Cost?

Welcome to another episode of Google My Business Problems. My name is Brook Borup with My Clone Solution. I have brought to you Allyzon from Cast Haste and we’re going to answer the question: How much should SEO cost? 

Let’s dive into a few factors that can help decide how much to spend on SEO.

How Much Should I Spend on SEO?

As a small business owner, there are a couple of different assets that you need to consider when someone is trying to sell you SEO.  Are they selling SEO or are they selling SEM? Are they working on your onsite content and keywords or are they listing you in directories and building backlinks? 

Making the Most of Your Budget

If they’re doing onsite work, you should start at a budget of $500 per month and work your way up as you see the performance and functionality of your website improve. With your $500 budget, start with core pages and move on to the rest of your site. Onsite optimization can get as pricey as $5,000 per month- but your needs will depend on how many pages you have on your website. If you’re a brand that’s going to create content every single week, you may need more support than a website that does not blog at all.  On the SEM level, Allyzon doesn’t suggest paying for it until you have a sizeable budget. This includes everything from Paid Google Ads to link building and PR.

The sad truth is that it’s an expensive game to compete in. If you’re not ready to pay to play with a sizeable budget, don’t.  Let’s recap: How much should you spend on SEO? If it’s on your website, start at $500 move up. If it’s off your website, don’t screw around with it until you have a big budget to play with. You know that you don’t just do SEO blind, you don’t do anyone forms of anything blind. You make sure that there’s an entire strategy behind it and that you’ve hired the person that can help you with that strategy, not just the one-off service.