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Quickbooks Software

Create and Memorize Reports in QuickBooks

QuickBooks contains several pre-created reports that display summary information from the company data file. The reports are crucial to small business owners for charting the future trajectory of the company. QuickBooks reports can be customized according to the specific user’s needs. In this article, we will cover basic information about how to create and memorize a report template in QuickBooks Desktop 2015 and later. Here you will learn about how to customize, filter and memorize reports to suit your needs and preferences.

How to Customize Report Template in QuickBooks

QuickBooks Desktop allows you to customize the content of any report.  You can add or remove the columns, customize fields, add or delete the header or footer, and also customize the style and font of the report.

In order to customize a report, you should follow the steps outlined below.

Step 1: Select ‘Reports’ from the Menu bar.

Step 2: Open any report, and then click on ‘Customize Report’.

Step 3: Click on the available tabs to customize the window.

Step 4: Once you have customized the report, you must click OK.

The available tabs in QuickBooks that you can customize include Display, Filters, Header / Footers, and Fonts & Numbers.

In the Display tab, you can change different settings regarding the content displayed in the report. You can select the dates covered by the report, report basis (annual or cash), and columns displayed on the report. You can specify how the columns should be displayed in the report (by day, by total, by item type etc). The sort option allows you to choose how the data is sorted (such as ascending or descending order). Also, you can specify to add sub-columns for the previous period, previous year, year-to-date, and percentages in the report.

The Filters tab contains options that you can use to filter the information contained in the report. You can add or remove filter as per your preferences. You can set filters for date, amount, billing status, aging, and many other elements.

In the Header / Footer tab, you can modify information that should appear at the bottom and the top part of the report. The header text appears at the top of the report while the footer text appears at the bottom. You can select information such as company name, report titles, subtitle, and date prepared in the header section of the report. The footer information that you can select or deselect includes the page number and the extra text that you want to be displayed in the report. You can also specify the alignment of the header and footer.

Finally, the Fonts and Numbers tab allow you to select the appearance and style of the report. You can modify the fonts, font style, and font size of different sections of the report. There are several sections whose font can be modified such as column label, row labels, report data, date, report title and subtitle. In addition, you can opt to have all the numbers divided by 1000 or without cents. Lastly, select whether negative numbers should be displayed in parentheses or with a trailing minus sign.

How to Memorize Reports in QuickBooks

In order to avoid having to go through the process of customizing the report every time you want to print the report, you should have the changes memorized in QuickBooks. In this way, the customized report will be ready for future use.

Here are the steps that you should perform to memorize a report:

Step 1: Click on the Memorize in the report window (figure below).

Memorize Reports

Step 2:  Next, you must type a name for the memorized report. You can select the ‘Save in Memorized Report Group’ option if you want to categorize the report template. Also, place a checkmark next to ‘Share this template with others’ option if you want the customized report to be viewed by others.

Step 3: Click Ok.

When you perform the above steps, QuickBooks will save all the report settings. You can access the customized report in different ways. To access the customized report from the report menu you should perform the following steps.

Step 1: Click on the Memorized Reports in the Reports menu.

Step 2: Select the report, or the report group, from the list

Step 3: Click Ok.

You can also access the memorized report from the report center by following these simple steps.

Step 1: Click on the Report Center in the Reports menu.

Step 2: Next, click on the Memorized tab.

Step 3: Now, you must choose the appropriate group or select uncategorized if you had not assigned the report to any group.

Step 4: Lastly, double click the memorized report from the list.

Note that in some cases an error message may be displayed when you try to save the report settings. This type of error occurs when you try to use too many filters. If you encounter an error message when saving the report settings, you should attempt to reduce the number of filters to resolve the issue. Also, you should try reducing the items selected in each filter to solve the problem.

How to Modify the Memorized Reports

You can easily modify the memorized reports. In order to edit the report settings, you should follow these steps.

Step 1: Open the previously memorized report.

Step 2: Change settings relating to display, filters, header/footer, and font & numbers.

Step 3:  Once you have made all the required changes, you must again save the report. You can choose if you want to create a new customized report or to replace the existing memorized report.

QuickBooks is one of the more versatile accounting software programs available. By following the advice given in this article, you will master the art of creating, memorizing and modifying reports. Keep tuned in for more in-depth advice and tips regarding QuickBooks!

10 Essential Tips & Tricks to Become a QuickBooks Power User

QuickBooks is the most versatile accounting software available. It is ideal for most small and medium businesses. The software can help you monitor business expenses, manage invoices, and organize customers and payroll data. You can set up a chart of accounts for a variety of business organizations with ease. Whether you run a small boutique shop, a financial advisory firm, manufacturing company, or a real estate company, QuickBooks has you covered.

Do you want to know how to accurately record financial data using QuickBooks? Do you want to know how to file tax forms? Do you want to know how to determine your business’s profits or losses? Then, you have to look no further. You will learn this and more so keep reading.

Note: The tips mentioned below relate to QuickBooks 2011 Desktop and above. If you have an older version of QuickBooks, you should upgrade your software since it no longer supported by Intuit. Go to the Products page to purchase your software upgrade.

A. Customize Your QuickBooks Desktop

1. Change the Default View

QB Search

The QuickBooks default screen can be customized according to your preferences. Simply click on Preference and then Desktop View. From this tab, you can opt to change the startup screen, show single or multiple windows on the screen, display home page when opening a company file, or switch to color icons/light background on the top icon bar. You can also customize the display color and fonts displayed on the QuickBooks screen. In addition, if you want to hear specific sounds for actions like minimizing, opening, or closing reports, you can customize this through the sounds tab.

2. Customize the Icon Bar

Customize Icon Bar

The QuickBooks default interface is loaded with icons that you may never need. You may also be missing icons that you may need for easier interface. In order to modify the icon bar, right click on the icon bar and click on Customize Icon Bar from the sub-menu. From this screen you can add and remove icons according to your needs. You can also create new icons by clicking on the Add button. From the Add Icon Bar Item screen, you can select a specific action and write a label and small description of the icon event.

B. Time Saving Tips for QuickBooks

1. Use Keyboard Shortcuts

Similar to other Windows applications, QuickBooks supports a number of different keyboard shortcuts. Using these shortcuts, you can save considerable time in operating the software. Some of the important keyboard shortcuts are listed below:

  • Start QuickBooks without a company file Ctrl (while opening)
  • Create Chart of Accounts Ctrl-A
  • Delete Transaction Ctrl-D
  • Edit transaction selected in register Ctrl-E
  • Find transaction Ctrl-F
  • Go to Other Account Register Ctrl-G
  • Display Transaction History Ctrl-H
  • Create invoice  Ctrl-I
  • Open Customer Center  Ctrl-J
  • Memorize transaction or report Ctrl-M
  • New invoice, bill, check, or list item in context   Ctrl-N
  • Copy Transaction in Register Ctrl-O
  • QuickReport on transaction or list item  Ctrl-Q
  • Open memorized transaction list Ctrl-T
  • Write new check Ctrl-W
  • Display Transaction Journal Ctrl-Y

2. Speed Up QuickBooks Searches

QB Search

You can also customize the QuickBooks searches from the preference screen. The search feature lets you find items in the programs’ help file or in your company file. By default, QuickBooks allows you to choose whether you want to search from the help file or company file every time you make a query in QuickBooks.

If most of your queries pertain to the company file, you can speed up the search by specifying that the software search within that location only.  To do this, click on Preference and then Search. In My Preferences tab, you can specify that the software automatically make a search of the company file without asking you every time you initiate a query.

From the Company tab, you can also specify how often the software updates company file indexes.  Specifying lower duration of indexing will speed up the program. But the searches will not reflect the most recent changes made to the file. In order to update the entries, you can click Update Now button in the window.

3. Automate Form Entry

Automation

Do you have to enter certain transactions regularly? Not in a mood to enter recurring transactions every day? Then, let the amazing memory of QuickBooks works its magic for you. QuickBooks can memorize certain recurring transactions like rent payments, utility bill payments, and depreciation expenses. You can specify that the software make entries for memorized transaction automatically. To access the tool, type Ctrl + M.

4. Record Favorite Reports

Do you work on certain reports regularly that you want to access instantly? QuickBooks lets you do this easily. You can designate certain reports as favorites by clicking on the heart icon underneath the report in the Report Center. You can access your favorite reports from the Favorites Tab in the Report Center.

C. QuickBooks Power Tips

1. Batch Invoicing

Batch Invoicing

QuickBooks 2011 and above has a very useful feature called batch invoicing. Using this feature, you can create multiple invoices for a single transaction. To access this feature, go to Customers Menu, and select Create Batch Invoice.

2. Create Customized Templates

Templates

In QuickBooks, invoices, purchase orders and sales orders are referred to as templates. You can customize these templates in QuickBooks. Just go to Lists Menu, Templates, and right click on a template. From the sub-menu, select Edit Template. You will be taken to the Layout Designer button. You can import your company logo, so it shows on your documents. You can also download additional templates and colorful themes that will enhance all your templates.

3. Paperless Accounting Through QuickBooks

Did you know that you can achieve paperless accounting through QuickBooks? The software allows you to attach an electronic version of the documents to the transactions either locally or in cloud-based storage. With QuickBooks 2012 and above, this feature is absolutely free. To use the tool, click the Attach button with the paper clip icon in any document or template.

4. Enable Remote Access

QuickBook Remote Access is a cloud-based service that allows accountants and other users to log in remotely. The remote access feature is available in two versions: Full desktop access for $7.97 per month or QuickBooks data access only is priced at $3.95 per month. You can purchase this additional service by going to File > Remote Access in QuickBooks.

The above are just a few of the tips that you can use to make QuickBooks more efficient for your business. QuickBooks allows you to save a lot of time, money, and resources when managing your business income and expense data.  The survival of businesses often depends on timely and relevant accounting data, and this goal can be obtained easily using QuickBooks financial software.

What’s Needed to Start a Small Business?

It’s the dream of many to have a business of their own. Running their own business frees them from being bound to a day job and gives them the authority to be their own boss. Like the sound of that? Then you have come to the right place.

Launching a business is no easy task; it requires the utmost determination, hard work and motivation to leap over the umpteen numbers of hurdles that you may run into along the way. Here’s a general framework that you can follow whenever you are starting up your own company.

Identify the Opportunity
First of all, you will have to review the kind of opportunities you have. What kind of business do you want to start? Each type of business requires a different set of skill, abilities, and knowledge! The choice can be hard, but make sure you grab an opportunity that lies parallel to your passion. If you have passion for something, you may be naturally good at it. For instance, if you’re into cars, then you may want to consider starting up a business related to cars. Get the idea? Let’s move on.

Build Your Business Plan
Just like engineers prepare a plan before they actually start constructing a building, entrepreneurs must also have a business plan that includes each and every detail of how they plan to run their business. From company policies to finances and to marketing – everything is included in a business plan.

Take the time needed to create one. Go to the Small Business Administration site to create one using their free tool. Here’s the link, http://www.sba.gov/tools/business-plan/1. Going through the process of creating a business plan, using this tool or another one, will make things much easier as you move along your journey.

Get Financing
Without sufficient amounts of money, you may find it difficult to start a business. While you may have enough savings to get you started, many people invite investors to invest in their business. This is where your business plan will come in handy. Investors will want to look at how you plan to use their money, and your business plan will enlighten them on this matter.
Similarly, you may want to approach banks, friends and family or any other sources of finance.

Get Your License and Permits
To start a small business, you will be required to complete some simple paperwork. This paperwork is not too complex; however, it is absolutely necessary. You need to make sure you get all the required licenses and permits to operate in your state, city, and possibly your county. Do a search on the web to find out what is required.

Select Your Business Location
The next thing you would have to do is find a suitable location for your business. Working from your home initially may be a viable option especially if you need to keep costs down. If you plan to conduct your business online, then you may be better off working from your home, at least until your business gets stable.

However, if your work necessitates meeting clients and customers, then you may be better off selecting an office in a business district. Just make sure the location gives off a good first impression of your business. There are a number of virtual offices that provide office space by the hour, conference room space, and mailing addresses. Do your research. The options are numerous. Take your time and determine what will work best for your particular business situation and needs.

Set Up An Accounting System
Proper tracking and management of all your cash inflows and outflows and all your finances are vital for the success of your business. There are numerous accounting solutions for small businesses on the market that can help make the job easier. QuickBooks, for example, is quite popular with small business owners due to its ease of use and abundance of features. QuickBooks also has a number of third party add-ons that provide additional customization that suits your needs. Again, do your research or talk to a QuickBooks ProAdvisor. You’ll be glad you did. 😉

Tips for Starting and Growing Your Small Business

Small to medium businesses are growing in the US day by day, largely because of so many opportunities still out there resting in the market and also due to the entrepreneurship ‘trend’ that has recently begun to take over. Small businesses are also a great way to target the many niches looking for a better solution to their needs.

As small businesses are, well, ‘small’, they have the opportunity to progressively establish themselves as leaders in their categories, depending upon the nature of the business. However, not all small businesses are successful, and there could be a lot of reasons, like lack of knowledge of the market, lack of research or simply, lack of funds or even motivation.

So, what can you do, to stay in the market and keep your business growing? There are some essentials to starting and growing a small business, like:
Understanding Your Brand and Your Target Market
Starting any sort of business means first, you will have to conduct profound market research. What is currently lacking in the market? Who needs the products or services you are willing to step into? What are specifications like age, income, lifestyle, and other demographic, geographic, psychographic features of the niche you are targeting?

To start off right, you need a good understanding of your product, market and the customers and a profound understanding of your brand. Your brand is not just the color, logo, or visuals; they are the experiences your customers share with your brand.

Be Unique
The success of small to medium businesses purely depends on being unique and standing out. If you are successful in portraying your brand as unique, you should be successful in establishing factors that make your offerings unique. Don’t forget to put these unique qualities into the company’s advertising and marketing messages.

Make Sure The Customers Know The Face Behind The Business
One of the most common reasons behind small businesses failing is the absence of the owner. Not only do employees lose motivation due to the absence of the manager, but also this can lead to a rapidly generating fleet of unsatisfied and unhappy customers. Always be present, and find ways to interact with your customers so that they know the face behind the business.

Build a Community And Following
Most small to medium businesses also fail because they are unable to build a community around them- why is it so important?

Building a community, using both online and offline methods gives your business solid opportunities to grow and progress. People start to trust your brand, and you can also keep conducting seminars and events to enhance the image of your brand.

These tips are just a starting point for you to begin thinking about as you work through and develop your business further. Also check out

A Few Things to Consider Before Starting Your Own Business

When it comes to starting your own business, there are several things that need careful consideration. As you are probably well aware, starting a business is no easy task. It can be a risky journey that is loaded with unknown dangers and things that can seem to be way beyond your control. For many, it is a life-long dream and a way to control their own destiny. It certainly was us. We are not “the” experts when it comes to starting your own business. We had a few bumps and bruises along the way. That said, we want to share a few things that we learned, understanding that every business is different, yet proper planning is vital for a business to succeed. If you are launching your own business, or are planning to do so in the near-future, here are a few things for you to consider.

1. Contemplate Your Reasons
The idea of starting up your own business is indeed daunting; but so is the never-ending fatigue associated with working an 8-hour shift that turns out to be a 10, 12, and even 14-hour shift each and every day. Still, you should have a solid reason for why you want to start your own business, and it should not be because you have run out of options. A strong purpose is vital for the development and growth of your business.

2. Select the Type of Business
Once you have a solid purpose on why you want to start your business, you need to answer the question of what type of business you want. The options are almost unlimited; people love cakes, everyone needs a haircut, we cannot live without plumbing, and the list goes on and on.
Look around you and try to figure out what kind of business is needed most in your neighborhood or wherever you intend to start your business.

3. Formulate a Business Plan
A business plan is like a map, if you head out without it, it is fairly certain that you will get lost. Your business plan is the foundation upon which your business will be built. You should include clear, unambiguous information regarding what you will offer, who will be your target audience and any information relevant to the running your business successfully.

4. Understand Your Target Audience
Without understanding your target audience, you will be shooting in the dark. A target audience is a certain set of consumers/customers/clients with a potential interest in your products or services. For instance, if you are planning to sell cosmetics, it may not be a good idea to simply target ‘all women’. You will have to do some research or review third party research on what kind of cosmetics are preferred by women of certain age groups. Doing a little research will give you something to aim for, the appropriate customer who would be more inclined to buy your products.

5. Create the Right Pricing Structure
The prices of your products and services should be set correctly. They should not only cover the necessary expenses, but they should go a step further to generate a profit for you. A lot of entrepreneurs underestimate their efforts; make sure you avoid making this mistake. Consider the costs and effort that it takes to create your product or the amount of time that goes into the services that you offer; do not just account for the obvious expenses when setting your prices. Remember that nothing is more valuable than your time and effort, and you should charge for this too. You can use financial management software such as QuickBooks to help you with all the numbers.

The list above only begins to scratch the surface of the things you need to consider as you begin the journey of becoming an entrepreneur. Business entity type, recordkeeping needs, taxes, and more will need to consideration as well. Check out our post on the Sub S Corporation structures. I know you will be glad you did.

Advantages of a Sub S Corporation

Small to mid-sized business owners already have a lot on their plates. With all the costs of their new startup including things like branding, marketing, purchasing equipment and more, every entrepreneur is looking for ways to cut down on costs. Although there is a vast list of taxes that need to be covered, there are still a number of tips and actions business owners can use to save on taxes. Hiring an attorney to help lower taxes might be one solution, but that also means paying the attorney, which can sometimes mean hundreds and thousands of dollars; so what should you do?

Most Corporations Going Sub S Corporations
A large number of small to medium-sized businesses are now making the election to become a Sub S corporation, those who are already established, are seen changing their status to Sub S.

This is largely due to the huge savings Sub S corporations can get on self-employment taxes, like social security and Medicare. One of the most important benefits a Sub S corporation gets is when the shareholder number under 100, it gets the benefit of being taxed similar to a partnership or LLC.

Consequently, this enables the Sub S corporation to avoid any chances of double taxation; not having to pay any taxes on the profits earned because profits are passed on to every shareholder. Each shareholder is taxed at their own personal tax rate, essentially cutting down taxes to a great extent.

It’s Passive Income!
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) may seem that it is not always logical because it treats Sub S corporation income as passive income for tax purposes. Now, this will leave you confused for a while because passive income is something totally different. However, being a Sub S corporation, you can benefit from what seems like a nonsensical rule.

Using this clause, you can counterbalance passive losses like rental losses or equipment losses by adding them to your annual taxable income. For example, if your office equipment losses sum up to $10,000 and your income bracket is $300,000, you will only be taxed for $290,000. Capital losses cannot be carried forward to the future years because Sub S corporations pass net income, net losses, capital gains and losses through to the shareholders each year. No previous year taxable income exists on the corporate level. However, a shareholder may be able to use a net operating loss carryback on his/her personal income tax return.

Save On Payroll Taxes
If you have been running a Sub S corporation, and you are the sole owner, you can minimize your taxes by setting your salary at a reasonably modest level. However, avoid projecting it abnormally low as the IRS may check if the salary is reasonable for your business or not. Moreover, if you are hoping to boost your retirement benefits, you may want to give yourself a little higher salary. It will require you to pay more taxes, but this way, you will be able to accrue social security wage credits, which could potentially help you when you retire.

There are countless ways to save on and benefit from the structure of a Sub S corporation. Before make a final decision, you should look over every aspect and consider getting professional help before you move from your current status to that of a Sub S corporation. Make sure it is the best business structure for your company.

5 Cost-Effective Apps for Managing Your Business on the Go

If your life is anything like mine, it is the rare occasion when you seem to have a moment to sit still or feel like you can catch your breath. Between the breakfast meetings, lunch meetings, client meetings, business trips and questions from the office and customers alike, things never seem to stop moving. These days it almost feels like we are working 12-16 hours a day, and that’s on a good day. 🙂

As a small business owner, myself, I have to stay on my toes in order to ensure the growth of my business. Without a doubt, I know you share many, if not all, of these same joys and pressures, so here a few apps for managing your business on the go. I have tried a number of apps, and I certainly have my favorites, and since we all have different needs, I won’t bias you with my favorites. I’ll just continue to point out a few of the best apps for you to choose from as the weeks and months go by.

As you probably already know, smartphones are a must. They have become the key currency of doing business in today’s fast-paced environment. Smartphones allow you to remain connected with your business regardless of where you are. So how can you manage your business while on the go?

Here are 5 of the best apps that you can use to keep an eye on the major facets of your company and keep you organized.

1. Expensify
Expensify is a free app that allows you to sync all of your credit card transactions with the receipts that are scanned by your smartphone’s camera. If you are driving, it will also keep track of your mileage and will generate a summary report that can be synced with QuickBooks.

The app is free for use by individuals; however, in order to sync it across all the employees of your company, a charge of $5 will apply for every person submitting expenses each month.

2.     Box.net
Imagine receiving a crucial report or a presentation from your client or someone on your staff while you are on the road. How would you review it?

Box.net is the solution for such a situation. It can easily render documents including PDF as well as media. It also allows for document collaboration; enabling you to edit and monitor any changes that the original owners may have carried out.

3.     TripIt
Meetings, meeting and meetings! How would you organize your logistics if you have a number of meetings spaced out all over the country?

You can do that easily using TripIt. This nifty little app can store all the information related to your flights, hotel and rental car. It will also feed you departure and arrival information, as well as the direction and distance between the airport and the place where your meetings are to take place. All you have to do is just forward the confirmation emails to plans@tripit.com and your app will be updated automatically in just a few minutes afterward it is received. The cost of TripIt is just $.99 for the ads free version.

4.     Evernote
Inspiration can come anywhere even when you are making your way through the airport security line. The last thing you want would is to forget the brilliant idea that just might solve all your problems. Evernote is an app that can be used to store such information. You can take notes by typing, capture photos using your camera or simply copy a note from any website. All of this information is stored on the cloud, enabling you to access it from any computer at any time.

5.     Basecamp
Basecamp is a wonderful project management app that allows you to post new tasks, mark them complete as well note new milestones using your smartphone. It allows easy collaboration with your teammates so that the whole team is aware of the project’s progress. The Basecamp app requires an internet connection to work.

These are just of few of the tools that can help you stay ahead of the game. Check out our previous post, Best Smart Business Apps of 2013.

Tax Tips for Small and Growing Businesses

Taxes are undoubtedly one of the most important and often, agonizing details that businesses have to face. Similar to the way in which a business’s annual profits depend on the entrepreneur’s abilities, the yearly tax bill also depends on the knowledge and skills of the business owner. It is imperative that you, as a business owner, are aware of and fulfill your responsibilities by paying your taxes to avoid any complications with the IRS.

However, a good entrepreneur will take measures to reduce his or her taxes through careful management of their business.

Here are a few tips to help you understand how you can reduce the amount of taxes you pay.

1. Writing Off Deductions
All kinds of ordinary and necessary expenses can be deducted from the revenue of a business in order to reduce its taxable income. There are some deductions that are obvious, such as expenditures comprised of salaries, rent, equipment and travel. Nevertheless, the rules concerning deductions are not really crystal-clear.

Do not forget to analyze the following possible deductions:

  • Business Losses – As a sole proprietor or Sub-S Corporation business owner, you can offset any losses incurred by the business against your personal income to reduce your taxes. If your business losses exceed your income, then you may be able to reduce your taxable income in the future.
  • Business and Pleasure Trips – If you devote more than half of your trip to business, then you can deduct the travel costs and other expenses applicable to the business portion of the trip to your reduce taxes.

2. Be Aware of Employee Taxes
If your company has employees, then a number of taxes will have to be deducted from their salaries. Such taxes include:

  • Withholding – Federal and State (where applicable) income taxes, Medicare and Social Security taxes must be withheld from the salaries of your employees.
  • Employer matching – Any business must ensure that it matches both the FICA (Social Security) and Medicare taxes paid to employees.
  • Unemployment Tax – As a business owner, you must also pay any Federal and State unemployment taxes.

3. Check Your Liability to Pay Sales Tax
As a small business owner, you should be aware of whether or not you are required to pay taxes for the products and services that offer. Most products are taxable, with the exception of prescription drugs.

The sales of both taxable and nontaxable products must be included on your business’s sales tax return. Also, if your company sells products online and does not have a presence in a specific state, then you may only be liable to pay use tax, instead of sales tax.

4. Keep Your Tax Documents for a Minimum of 7 Years
Good recordkeeping is vital to the success of a small, growing company. There are some things that must be kept indefinitely, such as any licenses, incorporation papers and business tax returns. However, tax-related documents such as client 1099 forms, vehicle mileage logs and expense receipts should be kept for a minimum of 7 years.

Please consult with one of our Brilliant Team accounting professionals or touch base with your tax advisor for more information.