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Francisco Lewis

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One of the critical concerns of running a freelance business is managing the financial and accounting aspects. Managing your business finances is all part of the game, and ignoring it may lead to nasty surprises. Also, not knowing how much you are earning and spending makes it difficult to see whether you are growing in your career. 

You may have many different clients, and it may be hard to track who’s paid, who owes you, when, and how much.  

Regardless of whether you are starting out or want to start tracking your cash flow, the steps you need to take are not as difficult as you may think. Keep these tips in mind to manage the numbers involved in your business. 

Have Different Business and Personal Accounts 

One of the best business decisions you will ever make is splitting your business transactions into separate accounts. This way, you are able to track your income and business expenses for a more straightforward calculation of taxes to be paid. 

Make sure that all monthly subscriptions are charged on the business account, instead of the personal one. 

If you are still a newbie to freelancing, you’ll probably use a personal credit card for this, until much later when you have a business card setup. You can try and get your personal credit card that you’ll solely use for business transactions. This way, you can separate business and personal expenses. 

Because it can be easier to lose track of how much money you are spending on a credit card, try and pay off the business credit card weekly. 

Some big banks offer business banking, but there are other banking solutions for small businesses that cannot manage the fees. You can choose what is best for you, depending on your needs.

Choose the Right Accounting Software 

Having the right accounting software will save you a lot of time and money, especially when you can’t hire an accountant. Bookkeeping becomes harder to manage when you are using spreadsheets, or pen and paper. 

Small business accounting software is easy to use even for those people who are not financially-minded. Accounting software will help you to: 

  • Create and send custom invoices 
  • Set invoice alerts for you and your clients 
  • Follow up with late payments. 

Before you sign up for one, you need to shop around for the right software. Some are specially tailor-made for freelancers. They offer features such as connecting to your bank account, filing taxes, real-time access to your financial data, and time tracking. 

Setting up the software correctly is another important aspect. If you don’t understand how to, you should hire an accountant to set it up. You should categorize your expenses well so that they align. This will help you save a lot of time and money when filing your taxes. 

Set Aside Tax Money 

This step is critical. Remember, you are not an employee, so your tax isn’t deducted from your salary. Have a plan to put money aside for your tax bill. You will need a lot of discipline for this. Otherwise you can land in a lot of trouble. 

Some freelancers have separate bank accounts for their tax bills. You can set aside at least 30% of your income to cater for this. Alternatively, your account software can also help you estimate how much you will pay to the federal tax authority. 

Also, you will need to pay an estimated amount of quarterly taxes as a freelancer. Have that amount set aside. 

Take this step seriously. The government is not lenient when you avoid your tax bills. 

Have an Emergency Fund 

An emergency fund is not just essential in your personal life, but business too. 

Know what your monthly overhead costs are. Always set aside a few months’ worths of those savings. Freelancing is still unpredictable. It would be best if you always stayed prepared for a rainy day so that you can at least sort the essential bills. 

Have your Clients Pay you Faster 

All freelancers know how stressful it can be to not get paid on time. You have bills to be taken care of, and late payments can be a nightmare. 

Sometimes, communication and sending reminders are not enough as the client might still default. This is why you should consider invoice factoring. With this option, an invoice factoring company pays you the amount owed in an outstanding invoice. The factoring company fronts you either the entire amount or a fraction of the due balance. They collect the payment once the client pays. 

An advantage of invoice factoring is that you get cash when you need it, instead of waiting for your clients to pay. Some invoice factoring companies integrate with accounting software, which makes it easier to manage. 

Hire an Accountant 

You may not be able to hire an accountant at the beginning of your career, but you’d be surprised at how affordable one is. When you are struggling to keep your freelancing career afloat, an accountant can be beneficial and worth the cash.  

An accountant can charge you on an hourly basis. You can pay for the services of a small business accountant for a few hours a month. The services offered can include: 

  • Sending invoices to your clients 
  • Following up on late payments 
  • Paying your business expenses 
  • Filing taxes 
  • Categorizing your expenses correctly 
  • Reviewing your bookkeeping reports 

You can also temporarily work with an accountant if you still prefer to DIY your accounting. This will help you understand the importance of cash flow in freelancing and avoid bookkeeping mistakes.

Learn the Basics of Accounting 

Understandably, accounting is not everyone’s cup of tea. However, some necessary skills will help you understand your freelancing career and how to make it thrive. Have some fundamental accounting skills at your fingertips. You will know how you earn your money, your expenses, and also how to pay your taxes. 

You should make sure you understand the following financial statements: 

  • Balance sheets 
  • Profit and loss statements 
  • Accounts payable and receivable 

When you know what’s going on with your finances, you become an intelligent freelancer. Even if you hire an accountant, understanding these essentials will help you make better business decisions. For example, you know whether taking a loan will be a good or bad decision for your business. 

Besides learning the basics of accounting, you can also learn how to use accounting software. There are various online tutorials, videos and webinars to help you. 

Final Word 

Accounting will always be part of managing a successful business. Even though managing your finances may not be the most fun part about being a freelancer, getting organized can help you save money and time. Remember that your freelancing business relies on the cash transactions in and out of your bank account. 

Set your personal and business accounts apart so that you can track your income and business expenses. Always set aside your tax bills and have an emergency fund for the lean months. You can hire an accountant to help you follow up on payments and make your clients pay faster. Most importantly, sign up for accounting software. 

These simple tips could even make your freelancing business even more profitable. 

Business is changing, so is finance. 

With the advent of globalization and modern technology, the financial environment is going through significant development changes. Financial leaders are challenged to take risks and responsibilities to meet the demands as the business and corporate sectors heavily rely on them. 

As they face a new era, they are expected to diversify businesses through mitigating new technology risks. In order to forecast financial solutions, they will be responsible for studying past reports, properly manage the status quo, and be ready to create the future. 

Here are the  three major trends emerging in the Finance sector. 

The Digital Era 

Technology, as identified by business executives to be the most important external force determining businesses, is not a recent phenomenon. 

Business industries have been using technology in gearing up its efficacy. 

  • Customer-centric features and functionalities are being utilized through the use of mobile and technological devices by third-party payment systems like Confident Vision Dallas, Paytm, Mobikwik, etc. to minimize bookkeeping mistakes.
  • Automation is rapidly substituting the banking jobs; thus a change in the skill sets of the business and financial organizations is required.

Business is becoming data-driven in decision making.  

  • Data analytics technology is noticeable in the financial and business sectors as corporate institutions use data analytics in gaining an edge over competitors and improve customer care system.  
  • Financial institutions like banks and firms are attentive on refining their performance by the use of data analytics techniques.

As everything goes digital, cybersecurity is critical for the finance industry. As a result, innovations are being done as a keen level of prospect about the cybersecurity, and emerging trends are in line with improving the safety. 

The Evolving Roles of CFOs 

Business and financial organizations should be transformed by advancing the speed of business by the financial leaders. The role of the Chief Financial Officers (CFO) continues to evolve in this new era of finance. CFOs should not only limit themselves to the boardrooms, bean-counters, and sit in the workplace.  

Part of their job evolves to: 

  • IT management 
  • Operations 
  • Business strategy responsibilities  

In the early 2000s, a series of corporate scandals have been thrown to CFOs and financial organizations. It enabled the industry to manage the mitigation in a global context. In 2015, IBM identified technology as the most important external force shaping the business and financial sectors.   

As they grow the business, many finance professionals have to manage new challenges in a complex, economic, and global environment to better business than ever before. They understand all the operations in the industry, it is expected from them to invest in financial technology as capital asset and investment. 

Another factor that empowers them is the decline of the role of COO. They lead the company within managing the operational background and manufacturing and supply responsibility. 

While CFOs are taking the role over procurement and IT, CFOs are now expected to: 

  • Strategize planning responsibilities. 
  • Solidify their background in finance to understand the systematic and objective side of businesses further. 
  • Responsible for improving the overall business model innovation in associating performance to plan implementation. 

The Rise of Millennials Workforce 

Millennials are game-changers. They have different values and working styles than many adult employees. As new technology is enabling a more mobile workforce, they best suit in the industry as they are highly motivated, educated, and tech-savvy group of young professionals. 

A dichotomy of aging employees who are struggling in adapting the fast-paced-heavy-technology business environment paved the way for the Millennials in redefining the working environment. Technology provides them greater flexibility to control their work schedule, and this generation desires this organizational balance. They are natural born explorers, and they are motivated to change the world.  They bring with them productivity, agility, and efficiency. Thus, it is best to anchor with them in redefining businesses goals. 

On the other hand, for the millennials to give their optimum performance, business leaders should adapt to the ways of operation of this emerging generation. It includes planning about their pay, benefits, and a more dynamic and empowering work environment.  

Conclusion 

Financial technology or FinTech is the newest buzzword. It is evident that it is passing and affecting our daily lives. It changed and is continuously changing the business and corporate world. This is a revolutionary period that CFOs and financial organizations need to address and pace with the change. 

If financial planning is better changed, businesses and the corporate world will emerge.  

The most valuable asset that any company has are its people. This is why companies spend top-dollar to find, recruit, and hire the right people for the right jobs. However, hiring the right people isn’t just about increasing a company’s bottom line. 

In this article, we take a closer look at why a company has to hire the right people into the right positions to be more effective at what they do. 

1. Specialization And Company Efficiency 

Being able to find people who are specialized in a particular area that your company is lacking in is extremely important in the search for new hires. People who specialize in a specific area will allow a company to be productive in that area and productivity in one aspect when multiplied in each section of the company results in overall efficiency. 

Being able to assess skill set efficiency to improve company efficiency is extremely important in looking to fill highly critical roles. For instance, an M&A executive search requires that you headhunt or go to a professional headhunter since the skills and experience necessary are highly specialized. You need to be able to fill missing company roles with the right skills.

Being able to appropriately fill positions with the proper skill sets required to carry out the job roles allows specialization to occur within the company. Specialization makes the company more productive. We all know what productivity does to the bottom line. 

However, it goes beyond the profit margins. 

2. Unique Talents 

It’s not just about the skillset and function of a person, but also the innate talents that they have. Take, for example, two computer programmers who are exceptionally well, one has leadership experience, and the other one is more analytical. 

If you needed to fill a position and you are on the lookout for a potential leader because your business is scaling, you are probably better off with the former. However, if you already have a leader but need someone to help with quality control, eventually, you are probably better off with the latter. 

Human resource personnel also have to be on the lookout for talents that could be beneficial for the company in the long run. A skill set can be learned, but talents are innate, and not all talents are suitable for all companies. Some allows people to find out what their talents are for them to further adapt in different situations. This is just a stark indicator that it’s not only learned skills that are important in hiring. 

You can always teach a skill, but you can’t gain talent overnight. 

A business thrives on unique talents, and combing specialization and these unique talents allow for a better opportunity for the company to develop. Also, being able to capitalize on this adds to both productivity and employee morale. 

3. Helps with the Company Culture 

However, it is not just about fixing the displacement between company needs and the skills of the people that it hires. Sometimes it’s also about hiring the right people with the right attitude for the job. 

Company culture has become such an integral part of any growing startup these days because of the increase in creativity that is required in companies today. The working environment has been playing such a pivotal role in motivating employees.

We talked about skill sets and specialization, as well as the unique talents or strengths that allow for mutual productive reciprocation within an employer and an employee, but company culture is also an integral part of the overall discussion. 

Company culture dictates the pace of company interactions and the vision that a company is heading in. Some people might have the right set skills and talents but are unable to function under the leadership or an environment that they deem to go against their energy or moral. 

It still has to be a person who accepts the company culture and is willing to be a part of it. If not, it results in a bad fit for the company since it can demotivate the employee and cause a ripple effect amongst the moral of the peers that they deal with daily. The culture will be a determinant of employee motivation. 

Conclusion

As you can see, finding company needs might be easy, but looking for the right combination of learned skills, innate talents, and the willingness to work within a company’s corporate culture are all critical determinants for overall company growth and efficiency. 

HR departments have to be on the lookout for people who they can help develop and grow, and can also help in the development and growth of a company. 

Learning how the industry works can provide you with some insight on how to enhance your startup. This allows you to generate new ideas on how you can improve your take on the industry, how you can stand out from your competitors, and how to entice new customers into paying for your services and new clients to invest in your venture.  

In today’s times, startups need to keep up with the demands of consumers and should take advantage of technology to better their service. Here are some of the tools you’ll need for startup success: 

1. Computerized Valet Parking Systems   

Many established businesses often have a high volume of cars moving to and from their location. This can be a great opportunity for budding entrepreneurs who are looking to improve their parking facilities and services.   

Startups are in the best position to invest in a computerized valet parking system to bring a new parking experience to clients who are car owners. They can take advantage of CVPS to optimize their parking facility, especially when there’s only limited parking space. 

2. Pearltrees 

Pearltrees is a digital tool that allows users to organize everything. From web pages, photos, documents, PDF, and notes, each item can be organized into different collections, which you can access anytime, anywhere. It comes in a Mondrian-like layout design that allows you to overview each project as a box. You can create a thumbnail for each project for fast organization. 

Startup businesses can benefit from this tool as it allows them to share online content with potential clients and also share ideas with collaborators on their start-up project.

3. Asana

Asana is a work management tool that allows you to stay on track with your daily tasks and future projects. The app also helps by breaking down large-scale projects into smaller actionable tasks, which make them less of a hassle to deal with. People who have a hard time focusing on what to do during the day can create visual project plans to see how it maps out in the future.  

Asana has the following functionalities available: 

  • List

    A summary of all tasks. You can change the view according to what you need to see. 

  • Timeline

    A visual timeline on your projects for convenience. 

  • Calendar

    A calendar where you can input some notes for yourself and your team. 

  • Conversations

    A place where you can discuss your current or upcoming projects. 

  • Progress

    A tab that allows you to update the status of your project to your teammates. 

  • Files 

    A collection of all the files being shared in the project.

4. Bitly 

An effective tool for websites and blogs, Bitly is a link shortener that helps enhance your business’ online presence, making it easier for search engine sites to track and index your website while also increasing its page loading speed. The link shortener also acts as analytics for your link or campaign. This useful tool also provides information on how many people have clicked on your links and what sites they shared your content to. 

5. Buffer  

For social media management, Buffer is a handy, affordable, and effective platform that allows you to schedule and post your social media content automatically. This handy platform also provides analytics that allow you to see how your posts are performing, giving you an idea of how you can create better campaigns in the future. 

Buffer can allow you to connect and schedule content to the following social media platforms: 

  • Twitter 
  • Facebook 
  • LinkedIn 
  • Google+ 
  • Instagram 
  • Pinterest 

With Buffer, you can focus on the important parts of your startup without worrying about the details of social media creation and management.  

6. Dropbox 

Organize your business files and save some space on your desktop by signing up on Dropbox, a cloud storage site that allows people to share various files with anyone. This remarkable tool also simplifies team management by allowing you to connect with different apps instantly, all while keeping track of project activities. 

Dropbox can also be synced automatically to your own computer, so if you own a startup, it would be time-saving to allow synchronization. 

7. Due

Due provides seamless payment solutions and digital wallet service for various businesses and freelancers. The app was created to help you keep track of the following:  

  • Who owes you money 
  • When payments are due 
  • How you can make global payments 
  • Secure transactions 

All of these come at affordable credit card processing rates that help you save money.

8. Lever

Many startup businesses require manpower, which the human resources or HR department is responsible for. The HR department in itself is only good if your business is medium to large. If you’re a small startup, you would need to save up on an entire department budget. However, if you’re looking to save up on recruiting, then you can try using a software instead.  

Lever provides a sophisticated solution that helps you find the best candidates for your business. Coupled with impressive features, this tool helps you streamline the interview process, uses objective data to help you make decisions faster, and also offers a collaborative action, allowing your team to take part in the process. 

Final Thoughts 

If you’re still in the beginning phases of your startup, consider hiring branding experts to help you shape and define your business’ persona and identity to clients and customers. For handling finances, hire an accountant to keep track of your expenses. As much as possible, invest in yourself just as much as you would invest in your business by learning and studying from key experts online. If needed, use social media to your advantage and join groups who are also on the journey of starting their own startup business.  

Aside from investing in valet parking software, parking materials, a website, and a digital marketing campaign, certain tools that allow you to manage your startup in several aspects not only save time but also save money that you can use for future resources. Use these tools to your advantage. 

We all want to make money while we sleep. There’s always a clamor to earn more. However, we’re time-bounded by the full-time jobs that we already have, the overtime sessions needed at work, and the physical strength that limits us. Passive income is your solution. There’s now many ways to let your money earn for  you even while it sits. It can even surprise you that your passive income will now make more than your day job will. 

Here are some of the uncommon (yet effective) ways to earn passive income: 

1. Go Into Commodities Trading 

Commodities trading refers to the manufacture and sale of the basic commodities like agriculture, mining and energy. You can earn through commodities trading in various ways: 

  • You can be the manufacturer; 
  • You can be the supplier of the raw materials to be manufactured; 
  • You can be an investor. 

The easiest way to earn is to actually be an investor in a commodities trading company. Your money grows each time the company makes a sale, as you’re automatically given a percentage of sale. If you don’t have enough cash to be an investor, you can be a supplier too. Supplying to a commodities trading business is especially good for you if you live in a farmland where you have agricultural produce that you’re not able to consume. 

Yes, commodity trading might involve a lot of hard work and preparation in the beginning. What commodity should you trade? How do you go about it? However, it’s only in the initial stage where the difficulty lies. Once you’ve completed the start-up process, you can engage in the services of a commodity CFD broker to do all the work for you while you just sit and watch your income grow.

2. Go Vlogging On YouTube 

Vlogging is the short-term word used to refer to Video logs, the process of creating videos about various content. You can earn an income through YouTube. Apart from the conventional ways of getting paid through your number of likes, views, and subscribers, you can make money by becoming a product influencer. The best part is that you’re earning while doing what you love! Imagine receiving a product for free for you to review and market, doing the groceries for free, so you can advertise a specific supermarket, or even being sent out on holiday to promote a theme park, a resort, a museum or a place. Vlogging – and also blogging –  should top your list, too, of one of the most exciting ways to earn a passive income. You can start doing this by creating your very own YouTube channel to post all the content that you like. 

3. Peer-To-Peer Lending 

Peer-To-Peer lending is the act of lending (and borrowing) money online. Gone are the days when you could only lend money to others physically. Many sites offer online lending services, for both lenders and borrowers to sign up for, such as Lending Club. What makes this more doable than by being a physical lender is that you don’t need a hefty start-up amount. You can start by lending up small amounts to multiple people. All you need to do is to register for an account on these Peer-to-Peer Lending websites and get started! 

4. Take Advantage of Your Credit Card’s Cash Back Rewards 

Yes, spending is a deduction from your income. But if you use your credit card correctly, you can earn points and rewards from it! (There are now some affiliate websites that lets your earn back cash while you shop, like Ebates). You can use credit cards in paying monthly bills such as utilities, phone, groceries, and the like. Be sure, though, that you can pay these bills in full in the next billing period of your card so you can optimize your rewards. These cash back rewards or points are a steady growth in your income, as you can use these rewards to purchase other items or save it back to your bank account. 

5. Invest In Real Estate

There are many people now who are enjoying the time of their lives by no longer being tied up to their 8am-5pm day jobs. They can travel anytime and have more time to spend with their families, as the earning they have is relatively stable and very regular. How? By investing in real estate. Buying a property may seem expensive initially, but do note that prices of real estate are always increasing. You can buy a house or a unit (even multiple ones, if your budget permits) and have them rented out. You can also hire a broker to do all the work for you – so all you do is sit and enjoy receiving your profits. 

6. Earn Money While You Search 

There’s websites like Swagbucks that allows you to earn money while you do a web search. You simply sign up to these websites, and you earn for every search that you make, or surveys that you answer. These bucks that you make can be credited to your PayPal account or converted to Amazon gift cards, and the like. 

7. Sell Your Photos Online 

It’s easy as one, two, three! All you have to do is upload your photos on sites that allow viewers to purchase your photo stocks. Each picture that you upload can be sold over and over again, hence the continuous flow of cash into your account. What a great way to turn your hobby into an income-earning opportunity.  

8. Pay Your Credit Card Bills! 

If you have extra cash hanging around the corner, don’t delay paying off your credit card bills. Even if your credit card bill isn’t due yet, pay those bills. Also, if you’ve signed up for installment purchases, don’t wait for the next installment period to pay if you have enough cash to pay it off today. If you start paying off your debt faster, this, in turn, results in more savings in your account as your money no longer goes to waste.  

Conclusion  

The list goes on and on. There are many still more that are absent in this list (or that you can think off, too!) All you have to do now is choose the one that best suits your skills and your financial capacity and get yourself started. 

Being a business owner can be great. You are your own boss, and you get to choose your working hours. Since you set your own time, you can opt to establish various businesses to create multiple sources of income.  

A type of business you can create is one that provides residual passive income. With a residual income source, you have to put in the effort up front and reap the rewards at a later time without the need to constantly manage the business.  

In this write-up, we’ll provide you with ten marketing business opportunities to help you establish a residual income stream. Before we start, it is important to remember that some of these residual passive income ideas are not clear-cut and do overlap with each other. For instance, with blogging, you can do affiliate marketing as well. But if you’re serious about learning various residual income ideas, you can read on to find out more.  

1. Blogging

Most people think that blogging only requires you to write content and put it on a great-looking website. However, it involves marketing, as well. You need to know digital marketing practices, including search engine optimization (SEO), to get ahead of the game.  

With blogging, you can earn income by putting ads on your website. Plus, you can also earn from recommending brands that you love. Blogging is not only for putting your ideas out there. Once you’ve established your site and gained a lot of traffic (visitors) coming in, you can earn from ad revenue and commissions. 

2. Creating Your Own eBooks

Like blogging, creating your own eBooks requires you to make great content. Of course, it’s in a different format. You earn royalties once people buy your books. With the advancements in technology nowadays, you can easily create your own eBooks and publish them on places like Amazon.  

Once you have completed a book and published it, you have to market it through various platforms such as Quora. Or you can learn Amazon SEO to ensure your listing is placed on top of search results. 

3. Creating Your Own Video Courses 

If you are an expert at a particular skill, you can create video courses you can sell through your own website and other platforms such as Udemy. Again, creating your video courses would require marketing.  

No one will know your course exists if you don’t market it. Also, providing a valuable course that people will learn from is important. If you make gibberish content, people will put out negative reviews about your offer.

4. Affiliate Marketing 

Affiliate marketing is a sales strategy wherein a business owner allows others (affiliates) to market their product or service, and give them commissions for making a sale. This is a very profitable business that allows you to earn residual income once done properly.  

With affiliate marketing, you can earn by recommending products through your blog, website, or social media platforms. For instance, once you create a valuable informational article that recommends using a product to solve a problem, you can earn multiple times over every time a sale is made through marketing made through your post. 

5. Selling Digital Products Through Etsy 

Etsy is a popular platform for those who want to sell handcrafted goods. Little do they know you can sell digital products within the website as well. Once digital products such as eBooks, audiobooks, and courses are up and running, they usually need little maintenance.  

The critical thing to remember in Etsy is you have to create valuable digital products that will satisfy buyers. If you slack off and create a low-quality product, people won’t buy into it. You should learn how to create quality listings as well.

6. Network Marketing 

Network marketing usually allows you to start a business with a low initial investment. You can sell the products of the company and earn a commission. Aside from that, you can recruit distributors that will sell the products as well. These distributors fall under you, and you can earn commissions from sales they’ve made.  

Network marketing is great for those who want a flexible business but have low capital. It does allow you to build a vast “network” of distributors. Thus, in the long run, once you’ve built a massive network, you get residual income from the sales and efforts of these distributors.  

7. Making YouTube Videos 

Yes, YouTube is not just for pure entertainment. If an ad pops-up in one of the videos you’re watching, then the publishers are earning from you viewing their content. Earning from YouTube requires, again, putting out valuable or entertaining content.  

Once you opt for the platform’s monetization program, you can earn revenue from ads associated with your videos. You still have to follow YouTube’s guidelines as well. For instance, many publishers get penalized for plagiarism or copyright issues. Thus, make sure you understand the guidelines and follow them when creating your video content.  

8. Dropshipping

Dropshipping is another form of sales strategy for physical products. As a dropshipper, you market the products of a third party. You only take care of the marketing and advertising side of dropshipping. Typically, the third party manages the stock and ships directly to the customer.  

You get profits from buying the product at a lower price from the third-party and selling it to your consumer at a higher amount. The great thing about dropshipping is you don’t need to buy or own inventory to sell a product to consumers. Orders are fulfilled by the third party, which is usually a manufacturer or wholesaler.  

9. Selling Professional Photos Online 

Do you have a knack for photography? Then this might be the residual income opportunity for you. You can put your photos up for sale on websites such as Shutterstock and iStockPhoto. Now, you can earn when people buy your images. 

If you think you have what it takes to get into the photography business, then this is one thing you should consider. It is best to pick a niche you’re good at, whether it’s street photography, landscape photography, or portraits. Then, you can go on from there.  

9. Selling Professional Photos Online

Do you know how to analyze businesses and weed out the potentially successful ones from the failures? Then, you can be a silent partner or a small-time angel investor. In exchange for your money, you get to have a portion of the business’ equity.  

The business owner will be the one handling the operations of the business. You only act as a silent partner earning a portion of the profits. Although you can still have a say with regards to various business operations (e.g., marketing, advertising, product development), you don’t necessarily need to do so. You can start with platforms such as AngelList, which helps business owners meet up with potential investors.  

In Conclusion 

Depending on your viewpoint, residual income opportunities can be an exciting way to have another source of income. You can start with these business ideas part-time, and once you get the ball running, you can focus on it entirely for more profit. As such, you should pick a residual income opportunity that suits your skills, preferences, and interests. Remember that it still requires hard work upfront. But once you get there, you can reap the long-term benefits of earning while you sleep.   

If you’re moving to Thousand Oaks, CA, you might be thinking about how to start a business in the local area to earn a sustainable income. You might have planned important things already, including contacting a moving company for transferring your furniture and belongings. However, you may be troubled by the fact that it’s hard to start a successful business.  

Fortunately, there are tips to help you get started with a business in this area. These will jump-start your journey to opening and running a successful business that might be able to change your life and that of other people’s. 

1. Provide A Solution

Instead of thinking about what to sell, think about how to solve a problem. It’s easier to gain customers if you’re giving a solution to a problem the local area is facing. You should fill a hole or gap within a market.  

Be clear about why you’re starting a business. Knowing your motives can help you build a brand and advertise your company. Understand the problems of your target market and provide a solution for them.

2. Keep Everything Simple  

Be careful about making your concept overcomplicated. It could lead to selling an elaborate product that nobody needs or even wants to purchase. Beginning a business is best done by focusing on a small niche. Keep your product or service simple.  

Cut off anything unnecessary that might lead to money pouring down the hole. Small businesses don’t need the attractive, non-essential features that big companies possess. As your business grows, you can add more features that you think might lead to more revenue. 

3. Be Wary Of Costs 

As a responsible business owner, you should add up how much your business will cost. You need to take each business expense into account to avoid bookkeeping mistakes in the future. Think about everything that might be necessary for you to start and operate your business. These might include rent, location, marketing, supplies, and workforce among others.  

Once you come up with a number, multiply it by a factor of four. Yes, you heard it right: you have to quadruple it. When it comes to expenses, you’ll experience surprises along the way. It’s better to be prepared than to be short on the money once the time to pay the bills arrives.r 

4. Visualize Yourself With No Money At All  

This means imagining that you’re broke with zero money in your pocket. Running a business is hard, and the probability of losing money is high. That’s why it’s a good thing to plan for the worst ahead of time.  

Check out every possible source of income you have. Are you currently earning from your job? If you quit work, will your savings get you through and for how long? You should be prepared for every type of situation that might happen, especially if the business idea doesn’t turn out to be successful. 

5. Getting A Job

If you’re about to start a business, don’t quit your job just yet. Gradually building your business from the ground up while keeping a job can help you pay for necessary living expenses. For a new business, earning a sustainable income will take time. Once you earn a good amount of money from your business, you can start working on it full time. 

6. Know The Ins And Outs Of The Legal Requirements

Learning the law can be annoying for most people, but it’s a big part of building a business. You need to know and understand the laws that come with starting and operating businesses within the area. Failing to follow government-imposed regulations can result in penalties.  

It’s necessary to register the business, form a legal structure, set up an accounting system, and handle tax liabilities, among others. In addition, you have to follow employment laws, especially if you’re hiring a workforce. Rules and regulations will vary depending on a lot of factors such as your business structure, state, and industry, etc. Learn everything you can about it to avoid costly legal mistakes

 7. Don’t Be Afraid To Sell

Most business owners are afraid to sell. Opening up about your product or service can be frustrating. Don’t think about what other people think. If you’re a bit on the introverted side, you should get out of your comfort zone and learn how to sell. It won’t hurt to ask for a sale. Think about it: How will people know that you exist if you don’t advertise, sell, or market your product or service? 

Eventually, if you’re able to sell your products effectively, your own customers might even be the one to do the selling for you, as they can spread the good word about your company by posting their customer experience online through social media posts or even videos. 

In Conclusion 

Starting a business can be difficult. It takes guts and a tremendous amount of effort to get your business from zero to hero. However, creating a profitable business is not impossible. Be confident about your product or service, and steer towards the right direction until you achieve success.  

Using drop shipping as an order fulfillment method is more than buying products from a supplier and letting them deliver those goods that now bear the name of your startup business to your customers. It’s also about choosing which e-commerce platform is right for your venture and how you’ll market your products so that customers will buy from you. For the former, you would want to choose Shopify given that it’s the leading e-commerce platform right now. For the latter, you can enroll in a Shopify drop shipping marketing course.  

As a startup company, it would benefit you to learn as much as you can when it comes to maximizing profits. Here are some reasons why it’s essential that you take a Shopify drop shipping marketing course: 

1. You’ll want someone to show you which products to purchase from suppliers and sell to your customers. 

Choosing which products to buy from suppliers and then sell in your Shopify drop shipping store all by yourself can be hit or miss. You’ll most likely experience the latter if you follow your impulses rather than making an informed decision. You wouldn’t want your startup business to turn into an online equivalent of a general merchandise store, would you? 

On the other hand, if you take a Shopify drop shipping marketing course, you’ll be taught how to select a niche that’s both in keeping with today’s online shopping trends and guaranteed to bring your startup business enough profit. Picking the right trending and profitable niche would enable you to more thoroughly select the products that your Shopify drop shipping store should have.

2. You’ll want to learn from someone else how to use SEO for your Shopify drop shipping store. 

Not everyone gets SEO – or search engine optimization – and even some online retailers who studied it all by themselves and have been incorporating it for some time are still having trouble making their store consistently appear in Google’s first page of search results. 

When you enroll yourself in a Shopify drop shipping marketing course, your mentor will teach you how to make your Shopify drop shipping store to consistently appear in Google’s first page of search results – including what to do and what mistakes to avoid. However, before paying for the said course, make sure that you already did your fair share of reading anything you can find about SEO. Even typing something along the lines of “SEO” in Google Search and opening the displayed results should arm you with enough knowledge about SEO that you’ll need before you take a Shopify drop shipping marketing course. 

3. You’ll want someone to teach you how to promote your Shopify drop shipping store on social media effectively.

Some of your Shopify drop shipping store’s potential customers might find out about you through nontraditional channels, such as social media. Promoting your Shopify drop shipping store on social media isn’t as easy as just setting up a Facebook business page and letting fate do the rest of the grunt work. Most of your startup business’s potential customers might even be on another social media platform like Instagram or Pinterest instead of Facebook, and you don’t even know it – at least not yet. 

A Shopify drop shipping marketing course would teach you how to use the power of social media to your advantage by knowing which social media platform your store’s potential customers are most likely using as well as creating highly targeted online ads to promote your startup business. 

Conclusion

Despite the entire concept of drop shipping being so seemingly simple that even a kid can easily understand it, the marketing part of it takes some time for one to master. After all, why is the percentage of online retailers using the said order fulfillment method at a mere 27%? If you’ve just opened your drop shipping store built using Shopify, you might not have the money or clout yet to pay someone to market your startup business for you. However, you wouldn’t have to do that anymore if you enroll yourself in a Shopify drop shipping marketing course. 

When referring to the most successful online business, you don’t need to look any further because Amazon takes the crown. Amazon has grown into a tech giant and has conquered the world of internet retail. A lot of big time merchants have benefitted from selling their products on Amazon. But Amazon has also made it possible for small businesses to achieve success by launching the Fulfilment by Amazon or FBA service. When the doors opened for entrepreneurs who wanted to start their Amazon business through FBA, many Amazon training courses also came up. Indeed, these courses have been a great help for FBA sellers to handle their business better. 

If you want to know what niches you should consider to make your business successful, go ahead and keep reading.   

The FBA Convenience 

What small businesses often find as an obstacle is the difficulty of distribution of their products. Logistics require time and budget that small businesses have a hard time to cover. This is what Amazon’s FBA service aims to solve. With FBA, sellers can have the following conveniences: 

  • FBA seller searches for suppliers or source of products. 
  • Once products are purchased, they’ll be delivered and stored in Amazon’s warehouse. 
  • Amazon’s staff will unpack and properly store these products. 
  • FBA seller will post items for sale on Amazon. 
  • Amazon will pack and have the purchased products delivered to the buyers. 
  • Amazon answers customer concerns on shipping, returns, and refunds. 

As you can see, FBA does all the logistics work for you. It doesn’t mean that you can just leave it all up to them and go on a vacation. It’s still going to be your business after all. What Amazon does is give you more time to focus on finding the best suppliers, marketing, and providing product specific customer service. This means you can focus on growing your business without stressing out on the distribution. It’s a plus that Amazon has a worldwide distribution that you can also sell your products internationally. 

Best FBA Niches 

With your logistics support being taken care of by Amazon, it has to be your responsibility to provide quality products to your customers. You can do this by first identifying the best niches of products that you’re going to sell on Amazon. There are thousands of profitable product niches on Amazon, but these are some of the top picks that you should check out: 

1. Electronics and Gadgets 

Technology keeps evolving, and new electronic gadgets are created and released almost every month. People nowadays have become more techie, especially the younger generation. This is reflected by the fact that electronics and gadgets continue to become a top selling product category on Amazon. This is also the reason why you should put this niche on your list. You can sell the newest models of mobile phones, phone accessories, smart watches, and cameras on your FBA business. 

2. Books 

Through the years, Amazon has become synonymous with book purchases. Although Kindle and tablets have become popular among avid bookworms, printed books are still among the most loved products on Amazon. You can sell popular novels in singles or volumes. You can also sell other types of books like recipe books, biographies, children’s books, and many others. 

3. Baby Products 

New parents may not always have the time to shop at the nearest mall for baby supplies, so they go to Amazon instead. Some are just searching for a gift for their friend’s baby. Either way, baby products are also among the most sold out items on Amazon. So, you should also consider it for your next sourcing. You can have baby clothes, feeding bottles, baby bath products, and strollers. 

4. Toys and Games 

As babies grow into toddlers, they’re going to need more complicated toys. You can have cars, dolls, action figures, and balls on your Amazon store. But when speaking about toys and games, parents and other adults can also play it with the kids. So, you can add board games like chess and scrabble or have cards and puzzles. 

5. Video Games 

Video games have also evolved as rapidly as technology does. From big machines in arcades, video games have found their way into homes in the form of consoles. Video consoles are also updated into newer versions as the years pass. So, when you sell video games for your FBA business, you have to make sure you have the latest versions along with accessories and game installments. Video games also come in hand-held gadgets like the Gameboy and PSP. These should also be included in your product list. 

6. Fashion Items 

If you’re a fashionista, then fashionable items shouldn’t be left out of your FBA product niches. Fashion never goes out of style in terms of marketability even when styles change. People wear these products every day, so you’re guaranteed to gain a profit from this category. This product category is also among Amazon’s top ten best sellers this year. This includes clothes, shoes, accessories, and jewelry.  

7. Pet Care and Supplies 

Pet lovers who genuinely care for their pets will spend on pet supplies. If you’re going to include this product niche in your FBA business, you have to include pet food, bath soap, shampoo, sleeping cots, and other grooming tools. 

8. Beauty and Wellness

Staying beautiful and healthy has a cost, and you can gain a profit from it. You can sell bathing essentials, weight loss food supplements, makeup, skin care products, and perfumes. What you need to be careful about selling these products is that they should be non-toxic. So, be sure to buy from an accredited supplier. 

9. Fitness Gear 

Along with the focus on beauty is the growing love for pursuing a fit and healthy lifestyle. Your FBA business can attract health buffs by selling fitness clothes and gears. You can have leggings, jogging pants, tights, and breathable shirts for exercise. You can also sell yoga mats, exercise balls, and other exercise paraphernalia.   

10. Home Needs and Kitchenware 

Whether it’s for a new home or a renovation, homeowners need home and kitchen essentials. These products are also among the most sought after by Amazon customers. This can include huge items like furniture and appliances or small things like plates, mugs, knives, and food storage.  

Conclusion 

These are some of the bestselling product niches on Amazon which can help you earn passive income. This means that by selling these products, you’re guaranteed to attract more customers and achieve higher sales. By signing up for an FBA seller’s account on Amazon, you already receive logistical benefits. You have to make sure that you can provide top customer satisfaction by choosing the best products. This list is an excellent way to start. 

Bookkeeping — when done right — can provide significant benefits for your business. It could help you manage and control your business and enable you to make smart business decisions.  Typical bookkeeping services include recording financial transactions, identifying cash-flow problems, and looking for ways to augment profit or alleviate spending.  

Proper bookkeeping could help small businesses operate efficiently and thrive in the long run. Unfortunately, some bookkeepers do the accounting improperly. You may want to take a look at some of the following common bookkeeping mistakes that you should avoid — as these may affect the growth of your small business:

1. Inefficient record keeping

Improper record keeping could lead to a slew of problems. This could be the result of not keeping receipts or not recording them. When it comes to monitoring expenses and cash flow, it is crucial that receipts are kept (even for small purchases!) and logged.  

Also, some tax offices will require receipts to keep your tax liability low. If you keep your receipts and have accurate records, you could save money on your income taxes. Likewise, accurate recording of your income and expenses could save you much money too, which is certainly healthy for your small business.

 2. Delaying the bookkeeping 

Some people have the habit of putting off their work — especially when it comes to auditing. This is one of the biggest mistakes that you can make in operating a small business. If the bookkeeping is always delayed, the workload will pile up. At the same time, finances are not monitored right away. Working on bookkeeping each day could help you identify the problems that may arise in your business and will allow you to track and meet your financial deadlines. 

3. Errors in classifying finances 

Incorrect classification of your funds could result in loss of investments. A qualified bookkeeper must know where to organize the finances — whether they are income, profits, debit, credit, or expenses. He or she must also know how to do accounting that could identify the gain or loss undertaken during that period.  

4. Mixing personal and business accounts 

You should definitely have separate personal and business bank accounts. If you do transactions with just one account, it could be a big issue. In the situation you are audited, you will need to present records of your business transactions, which could be a mess if they’re mixed in with personal transactions. Better for your business and personal financial health, it’s crucial that you separate your home or family spending from your business expenses to avoid any financial problems.  

5. Failure to backup data

You need to back up your data. Sometimes there are issues in the digital world. If you fail to back up your data, you might lose essential documents — including all of your financial records. It could leave your business on hold for a period and may affect the profitability or success of the business in the future.   

Conclusion

Bookkeeping is healthy for the growth of your small business. If you can’t do it on your own, be sure to bring a professional bookkeeper on board. Just consider these mistakes and do what you can to avoid them — that way you have a better chance of avoiding any potential losses in your business.