How to Start a Bookkeeping Business

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If you’ve visited my site before you know that I help businesses achieve free time by taking care of their bookkeeping.  When I started blogging, I was enjoying the creative outlet of writing, so I didn’t think of using my site for bookkeeping.  However, as I stayed home for my daughter’s surgery and eventually mine, I realized that I could offer services to others.  I have my bachelor’s degree in accounting and I’d worked for many companies as a bookkeeper, so the logical step for me was to build a bookkeeping business of my own. 

Since I didn’t initially start out thinking, I was going to create a bookkeeping business I made some changes to my website.  I’ve built other websites and started another business; therefore, I knew what I had to do to start my bookkeeping business, but I also acknowledged it would take time to grow.    

I want to share with you How to Start a Bookkeeping Business.  I help businesses achieve free time by taking care of their bookkeeping.  You can too!

Keep in mind bookkeeping and accounting isn’t for everyone

I’ve designated the last nine years in this career alone.  I have a bachelor’s degree in accounting and 26+ years of work history.  Not everyone has to go to school, but I do recommend taking courses which teach you specifically about bookkeeping and accounting.  I also recommend learning an accounting software you will use for your business.  My experience in multiple accounting software has helped me to help others. 

Steps I took to create my bookkeeping business

Business License and Bank Account

My business name is legal in my state.  I submitted all the necessary paperwork to create a legal Limited Liability Company.  Right after receiving my Articles of Organization and Business License I opened a new business checking account for my business only.  Keep your checking account separate from your personal account.

Create a Website

I created my website with the help of SiteGround as a host and WordPress as the software to create my blog.  GoDaddy.com is where I purchased the domain name.  I have a write-up to help you get started, How to Start a WordPress Blog Using SiteGround.

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Start a Blog

I began writing content before I actually used my website for my bookkeeping services.  Not everyone needs a blog, but I use blogging to share business information.  Writing content allows you to communicate about your knowledge and expertise in your field. It gives potential clients the confidence they need to request help from you.

Work Email

I created a general work email for my vendors and affiliations.  Using GoDaddy.com I was able to setup an email for clients.  The email allows me to secure the content that I am sending to clients.  Look into secure ways to send documents back and forth.  Remember that you are dealing with financial materials. 

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Advertisement and Marketing

I began advertising using local associations to promote my business.  I purchased business cards and signage for my vehicle.  I’ve gone out to local companies and introduced myself while leaving business cards.  This gives business owners a face to remember when they need additional help.

I listed my business on Google My Business and I have collaborated with sites like fitsmallbusiness.com to have them list my services on their site.

Social Media

Not everyone advertises on social media.  If you are trying to work with local clients, then word of mouth goes a long way.  However, since I have a blog and offer services locally and virtually, I use Pinterest with the help of Tailwind, Instagram, and most recently LinkedIn and Facebook.  Pinterest is the social media network that I have used the longest.  Learning about Tailwind was one of the best marketing tools I’ve found.  For more information, go to my blog post How Tailwind Helped My New Blog.

I suggest focusing and starting with only one or two social media outlets. Social media is time consuming so you want to manage your time and efforts while advertising and marketing your services.

Join Facebook Groups

For a short time, I was on the course kick.  I took as many free courses as I could because I thought I needed to learn more.  In taking courses and reading up on other blogs I ended up joining some Facebook Groups.  The people in the groups have shared applicable information for my needs.  If you’re interested in becoming your own bookkeeper using QuickBooks Online, I suggest viewing 5 Minute Bookkeeping with QuickBooks Online.

To work on getting links to your blog and SEO information to help your site be viewed on Google I suggest joining the Facebook group DigitalNomadWannabe.

Business Phone and Scheduling

I decided to purchase a cell phone number designated for my business.  Clients have the option to contact me in multiple ways.  This doesn’t work for everyone, but it was a decision that I made for my business. Most recently I have added Acuity Scheduling so that business owners can schedule a time to talk with me before making a commitment. Acuity Scheduling integrates with multiple tools including Xero, QuickBooks, Square, PayPal, Facebook and much more.  

Become a QuickBooks ProAdvisor

I studied the QuickBooks Online modules and became a QuickBooks Online ProAdvisor.  It’s a certification that you can achieve through QuickBooks with a little studying.  QuickBooks has a ProAdvisor site where you will be listed as a certified independent accounting pro once you’ve submitted your profile after completing the course. Create a QuickBooks Online Accountant login and you have the opportunity to become a QuickBooks Online ProAdvisor for free.

While completing some contract work for another company I also become Xero Advisor Certified. I work primarily with QuickBooks, but learning other programs opens up opportunities to work with multiple clients virtually.

Pricing and Packages

After much thought about the type of services I wanted to provide, I put together some packages with pricing points that would benefit the customer and myself. Since I have been working in this field for a while I decided to go with a fixed rate instead of hourly because the faster and more efficient I’ve become the less I will be paid by the hour. Remember you are selling an expertise you have in your field.

Additional Recommendations

Since I’ve been working in bookkeeping and accounting, I already had purchased a desk, QuickBooks Desktop, Office 365, a copier, scanner, file cabinets, and set up a designated work area when I need it.  Based on where you work and the clients you assist you will need to purchase the proper software and office supplies.  Since I offer virtual services, I looked at cloud platforms like FreshBooks, Xero, and QuickBooks Online.

I suggest visiting my recommendations page for more products and services I use for my business and blog. Some of these include ConvertKit, Paychex, and QuickBooks. If you are not interested in starting your own bookkeeping business, but would like to utilize QuickBooks Online Software all of my clients and readers receive 50% off of QuickBooks Online software just by going here. Through my site you can also receive 3 Months of Free Payroll Processing from Paychex by going here.   

QuickBooks Online ProAdvisor

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