69 posts categorized "Building Better Business Finances"

Webinar: How to Track Inventory in QuickBooks Desktop (Pro/Premier/Enterprise)

Inventory and Warehouse

Wish you had a better understanding of how to set up and track inventory in QuickBooks Pro, Premier, or Enterprise?

Get the insights you're looking for with my new webinar called "Tracking Inventory in QuickBooks Desktop - From Purchase to Shipment"

Designed for all inventory based businesses that are looking for insights and ideas on how to use QuickBooks better.

Webinar Registration Button

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The Inventory Planner - An Inventory Forecasting Tool for Your Business

The inventory stock status report in QuickBooks is a good way to keep score on your inventory, and see what items you need to order.

But what if you want more than it provides?

Consider a closer look at the Inventory Planner software package to help with your QuickBooks inventory forecasting needs.

THE INVENTORY PLANNER APPROACH

Designed to help e-commerce businesses with their inventory management, Inventory Planner brings many helpful features to you, including:

  • Automatic forecast and replenishment
  • One click purchase orders
  • Overstock analysis
  • Tracking multiple sales channels in one central place

I really like the forecasting module, as it looks at both the sales history of an item as well as forecasted usage, as shown in the screen shot below:

Inventory Planner Forecasting

The same applies to the overstock module, as Inventory Planner identifies slowly moving inventory and helps to take action on it. You will see if product is overstocked according to its current sales velocity. It can also analyze some common reasons why a product might not be selling well, for example the most popular sizes or colors are sold out.

Inventory planner overstock

CONNECTIVITY TO QUICKBOOKS ONLINE AND E-COMMERCE PLATFORMS

Currently, Inventory Planner connects to QuickBooks Online, as well as e-commerce platforms such as: Shopify, Amazon, WooCommerce and many others.

You can use Inventory Planner with the desktop versions of QuickBooks, but you'd have to use their CSV import tool in order to accomplish that. They currently do not offer a direct integration with QuickBooks desktop products (Pro, Premier or Enterprise).

FREE TRIAL AND PRICING

Inventory Planner provides a free 14 day trial of their software. At the conclusion of the trial, pricing starts at $99/month for tracking up to 1000 skus, and then scales from there based on the number of stores and number of skus being tracked.

I have found their support team to be exceptionally responsive and helpful as questions have popped up in working with their software.

If you've been looking for a tool to help you plan and manage your inventory more effectively, I encourage you to take a closer look at the Inventory Planner package.

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Improve Your Profits and Cash Flow in 2018!

You're invited to my Crankin' Up Your Cash Flow! webinar series that starts in just a few weeks!

Crankin' Up Your Cash Flow! will show you how to manage and improve the cash flow that runs through your small business.

This webinar series provides you with tools, tips, and ideas on how to make this new year the best it can be when it comes to profits and cash flowing through your bank account.

The webinars will be offered over a three week period (each will be recorded of course!). Also, I'll be setting up a private forum for participants to interact with me as well as other small business owners taking part in the Crankin' Up Your Cash Flow! sessions (participation here is completely optional).

There are a very limited number of slots available so we can have a nice small group!

Learn more about how Crankin' Up Your Cash Flow will help your business...

Crankin Up the Cash Flow Button

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Eliminate wire transfer fees and simplify global payments with Veem

While attending the Accountex accounting show in Boston a few weeks ago, I spied a session on the agenda that was focused on simplifying wire transfers and global payments.

This topic is quite relevant for my consulting practice and likely for many of my clients too, so I made sure to catch the session to see what it was all about.

The folks from Veem did not disappoint...

Veemlogodark

DISRUPTING THE INTERNATIONAL PAYMENTS MODEL

The presentation by the Veem team was centered on this simple premise - "rethinking wire transfers and making the process easy and affordable".

As anyone involved in business to business wire transfers knows, the existing process is certainly not easy, nor affordable. And, it is not even close to being transparent.

Take a look at how the Veem approach to international payments works - a lot simpler, and far less hands touching things (click to enlarge):

Veem Diagram

As you can see, their process is eliminating the middleman from the international payment process. A wonderful idea!

Veem is currently positioned to send business to business funds to over 60 different countries (and expanding that list regularly) with no wire transfer fees. In addition, you can also receive payments via the Veem platform.

DID YOU SAY NO WIRE TRANSFER FEES?

Yes, you read that correctly.

The Veem platform provides you the capability to send payments at no charge.

Veem gets paid by earning a small percentage on the foreign exchange rates that are involved in the transaction. I'll let them explain it to you via this example (click to enlarge the view):

Veem Payment Example

BACKED BY SOPHISTICATED INVESTORS + 40,000 CUSTOMERS STRONG

The Veem platform is backed by a number of prominent inventors from around the globe, including:

  • Silicon Valley Bank
  • Fenbushi Capital
  • SBI Holdings
  • Digital Currency Group
  • and others...

Veem indicates that they are currently servicing over 40,000 customers - many of them small and mid-size businesses like yours.

In addition, according to their web site, Veem was founded by a world class team of industry veterans with over 100 years of combined experience in payments, payment processing and banking IT infrastructure management, who aim to change the financial payment system through innovation.

Read more about Veem via TechCrunch and Forbes.


FAQ AND RESOURCES

Veem has set up comprehensive pages of FAQ and helpful resources to help you better understand how their service works as well as the reasons why you should consider moving your international payments to them, and ditching your bank ASAP.

EXTRA BONUS...

Veem also offers connectivity to the Xero and QuickBooks Online accounting platforms (sorry, it does not connect to the QuickBooks Desktop platform as far as I know).

SIGN UP IS FREE

Veem has provided me a special signup link to share with you to get you right into the flow of using their service. There are no signup fees of any type to use the Veem service!

CHEERS TO THEIR SUCCESS...

If there ever was something that needed disruption, it is the wire transfer process. I think back to my CFO days 20+ years ago, and all the hassles I had with that process. You never knew much about what was going on, other than that I was getting nicked by fees all along the way.

All I know is that if Veem existed back then, I'd have signed up in a flash!

I wish the Veem team great success as they tackle this challenge...

 

Are you using Veem today? I welcome your feedback on how their service has worked out for your business...

 

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Reconcile ANY Asset, Liability or Equity Account in QuickBooks

Here's a tip to simplify your accounting even more...

Take advantage of the fact that QuickBooks will allow you to reconcile ANY asset, liability or equity account balance!

Many businesses are already taking advantage of the QuickBooks reconciliation feature for their bank and credit card accounts (if you're not doing that, you should be!). But it can offer even more to you.

Here's how...

When you get into the reconciliation window, you can choose ANY balance sheet account from the drop down list that appears, as shown in the sample below:

Reconcile Any Account

Where could this come in handy?

Pretty much any account where you are tracking activity in and out of the course of a month, including:

  • Reconciling prepayments of inventory or other prepaid assets
  • Employee advances
  • Reconciling accruals and payments of payroll taxes
  • Reconciling partner distributions and payments

Once you've completed the process, if you go to look at the account register for the account you just finished, you'll note the familiar "check box" to indicate the transaction has been properly reconciled and the account is up to date:

Reconcile Check Box

That's all there is to it!

Note that this trick works in both the desktop and online versions of QuickBooks.

 

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Reduce Check Fraud in Your Business with Positive Pay - The Treasury Software Solution for QuickBooks

Were you aware that a staggering average of 1.2 million fraudulent checks enter the banking system every day and losses are growing 2.5% annually (source: American Bankers Association)?

If your business is still issuing paper checks, you may easily become part of those statistics.

And what a pain that would be - trying to work your way through unraveling the implications of a scammed check.

I have some great news for you!

There is an easy way to help prevent your business from becoming a victim of check fraud.

The solution is called Positive Pay.

POSITIVE PAY TO THE RESCUE

According to Wikipedia, "Positive pay is a service whereby the company electronically shares its check register of all written checks with the bank. The bank therefore will only pay checks listed in that register, with exactly the same specifications as listed in the register (amount, payee, serial number, etc.). This system dramatically reduces check fraud."

This article on Positive Pay from Provident Bank also offers some insights into the benefits of using Positive Pay, which may include:

  • A reduction of disbursements risk
  • Simplifying your accounts payable process
  • Improved control

POSITIVE PAY AND QUICKBOOKS

In order for this process to work, your bank needs to receive details about the checks you have written so they can compare it to the checks presented for them to clear.

Naturally, the details about the checks you have written could be manually created and uploaded to your bank.

However, this process should be automated to keep it fast and simple.

Even though millions of businesses use QuickBooks accounting software to issue their checks, there is no direct way to easily create a file of the checks you have written to upload to your bank. Unfortunately, there is no magic button within QuickBooks to tackle that task.

Enter the Treasury Software Positive Pay solution...

EASILY CREATE A POSITIVE PAY FILE FROM YOUR QUICKBOOKS DESKTOP OR QB ONLINE

The folks at Treasury Software have created a solution for QuickBooks users that allows them an easy point and click solution to creating a Positive Pay check file directly out of their QuickBooks company file.

Their solution works with both the desktop versions of QuickBooks (Pro, Premier and Enterprise) and the Online versions.

Here's a quick visual of how it works:

Positive Pay Solution

 

With the Treasury Software Positive Pay for QuickBooks solution, QuickBooks users enjoy all of the features and benefits of Bank Positive Pay, such as:

  • Easily create positive pay files in your bank's format
  • Quick setup with Bank Express Codes for your bank
  • Full audit trail
  • Exception reporting and research tools

VERY SPECIAL DISCOUNT CODE FOR MY READERS

The folks at Treasury Software have been kind enough to create a special discount code for my loyal readers that applies to all of their products (big thanks to Treasury Software!!)

To snag your 30% discount code on their Positive Pay for QuickBooks (or any other of their products), just type in the code BBL27 and you will get a 30% discount! It's that easy...

WHAT'S YOUR EXPERIENCE WITH POSITIVE PAY?

Have you been using positive pay in your business to reduce check fraud?

Care to share your experience with it so everyone can learn more about it?

Just drop your comments in the box below (or click the "view in browser" if reading this via e-mail) to pass along your comments and insights. Greatly appreciate them!

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Why Is My Customer Showing Overdue? I Set Up the Right Terms in QuickBooks

Let's say that you recently negotiated a sale (congratulations!), and your customer snagged some extended payment terms with you as part of the deal.

So, instead of paying you in your normal net 30 day terms, they are going to pay you with net 45 day terms (hopefully your profit margin covers this extra financing term!)

You go to create the invoice in QuickBooks, and quickly see there is no "net 45" day term in the list. So, you click the Add New option, and create the new terms that look like this:

Net 45 Day Terms

and blast through the OK button to get this invoice out the door.

All seems to be good at this point, right?

THE AGING REPORT TELLS YOU SOMETHING DIFFERENT

Next week, you do a quick rundown of your accounts receivable aging report, and you see the invoice to this customer showing as overdue. Say what?

There is no way it is overdue at this point!

Well, QuickBooks thinks something different about it than you do.

HOW TO SET UP THE PAYMENT TERMS PROPERLY

QuickBooks would indeed show you the correct aging of this invoice - if you had done one additional thing when you set up the terms above.

And here is the thing:

Net 45 Days with Days

In the original box above, the "net due in" was not changed from 0 to 45 days. So, QuickBooks would see this invoice overdue on the very first day you sent it, even though the terms "net 45" appeared on the invoice.

In the updated box below, the "net due in" is correctly set up to match the applicable terms.

Once you get in and reset the definition of the payment terms (quick shortcut to access them - click Lists > Customer and Vendor Profile Lists > Terms List). QuickBooks will then properly age the invoice on your reports!

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POOF! There went $100,000....

It was mid-afternoon, and the controller did a quick check of his e-mail to see if anything came in.

An e-mail from the CEO had arrived, so he opened it.

The e-mail contained instructions to send a wire transfer of $100,000 to cover a deposit for a deal the CEO was working on.

Knowing that the CEO was regularly involved in various transactions, the controller picked up the phone and called their bank to get the wire transfer underway to avoid any delays with the deal in progress.

The process with the bank was pretty simple, as wire transfers were sent regularly.

A couple hours later, the controller got a call from the CEO about another matter, and the controller confirmed with the CEO that he had sent the wire transfer he requested.

"What wire transfer?" said the CEO

"The wire transfer you e-mailed me about earlier this afternoon", said the controller

"I didn't send you any e-mails asking for a wire transfer to be made", said the CEO.

Silence followed.

Hauntingly dead silence.

The controller just realized he had been scammed by a well crafted and well executed e-mail.

Even worse, the funds had already left the bank.

Never to be seen again.

To repeat - never. to. be. seen. again.

Poof. There went $100,000!

Does this sound like some fiction to you?

Sadly, it is true. Very, very true!

View some additional real-life social engineering losses here.

BUILDING THE CASE FOR CYBER INSURANCE

The scenario above falls into what is being called "social engineering losses" by those in the insurance world.

In fact...

“We have seen social engineering losses for a number of our clients ranging from small business to publicly traded companies.   This is becoming common and businesses need to be sure to validate each transaction carefully.   Insurance is now available for this situation, however it is not automatically included on most policies and must be added by endorsement. Check with your insurance advisor to see if you have this coverage”  Lou Antonelli, Vice President, Practice Leader Risk Consulting, Oswald Companies

Whatever it is being called, it could mean a substantial loss to your business, just as the $100,000 was to the business above. That money is long gone, and isn't coming back any time soon.

Social engineering losses are just one form of cyber insurance coverage, as are system damage, system business interruption, cyber crime, multimedia liability and a host of other potential issues.

As businesses get ever more interconnected, it's essential to talk with your insurance agent to determine if this type of coverage is a good idea for your business. I've had that conversation with my agent recently, and I hope you take the time to do so as well...

ADDITIONAL REFERENCES ON CYBER INSURANCE

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Using the QuickBooks Cash Flow Projection Tool

Little known, but quite helpful, the desktop versions of QuickBooks (Pro, Premier and Enterprise) have a built-in cash flow projection tool.

Learn how to project your business cash flow in QuickBooks for a 6 week period with the video tutorial below:

WHAT ARE YOU USING FOR CASH FLOW PROJECTIONS?

If you're not using the QuickBooks cash flow projector, I'm curious as to what app or program you may be using to see how the upcoming cash flow looks for your business. Are you using Excel? PlanGuru? Something else?

INTERESTED IN TAKING A CLOSER LOOK AT YOUR BUSINESS FINANCES?

If so, you may be interested in learning more about my "Beyond QuickBooks: Making Sense of Your Numbers" program. Designed to help you feel a lot more confident and capable when it comes to managing the profitability of your business!

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Stop Inventory Balances from Going Negative with QuickBooks Enterprise

Have you been wishing that QuickBooks would add a feature that would stop your inventory on-hand balances from going negative?

Your wishes have been granted!

Learn more about how the Enterprise edition (2015 and newer!) stops this annoyance from occurring...

In case you didn't know it, by having inventory go negative in QuickBooks, it is known to cause all sorts of issues and concerns with the average cost of items getting totally whacked out as well. My friends over at the Intuitive Accountant have a great article that discusses the impact of negative on hand on QuickBooks average cost.

ADDTIONAL RESOURCES

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