Today, with online shopping projected to account for 17% of all sales by 2022, new eCommerce outfits are popping up like weeds. It’s easier than ever for an average Joe to think up a business idea and make it a reality online. Within days, seasoned entrepreneurs and newbies alike can have a fully-functioning operation, complete with an attractive sales page, targeted marketing, and products to sell.
But with each new crop comes a culling. With such a low barrier to entry, it’s no surprise that a wide swath of these fresh eCommerce sites will shut down within a year or two. Some of these companies will crumble beneath the weight of a lackluster product, Geocities-era design, or some ill-advised marketing scheme. But many will fall to a more unassuming killer: poor accounting skills.
If you’re new to the eCommerce game or thinking of migrating your brick-and-mortar business to the web, it’s easy to charge ahead into the future. It’s vital, though, that before you start raking in the dough, you actually know how to keep track of it first — and that means digging into the nitty gritty of the accounting world.
Here are three simple steps you need to take right now to get a grip on your eCommerce accounts before they end up empty:
1. Get a cloud-based, comprehensive eCommerce accounting platform.
If you’re running your business completely on the internet, it should be a no-brainer that you’re accounting software should be too. It may be tempting to go it alone, but with so many inexpensive accounting solutions available for the budding businessperson, it’s much more cost-effective, safe, and easy to run everything through an all-in-one platform.
Look for well-reviewed options that include inventory management to make things as simple as possible, and that link directly with your accounts for seamless transaction tracking. This way, you can keep everything self contained and avoid pesky number slippage.
2. Integrate it with your business.
Any accounting solution worth its salt will be able to seamlessly communicate with your eCommerce platform. This will allow you to generate reports based on real-time information with just a few clicks, keeping you abreast of any trend in your business no matter how much it grows.
3. Learn the basics and get going!
While great accounting software can do just about everything for you, you will need to learn a little if you’re completely green. Check out this guide for a quick and dirty 101 for eCommerce accounting, this one for some key strategies for success, and this one for some extra supplementary info. Then you’re off to the races. Just make sure that at every step in the process you’re absolutely adamant about keeping thorough records, and generate regular reports to identify trends and plan ahead. Once you’re confident that your accounting problem is running like a well-oiled machine, you can focus on the more interesting parts of your business — like making a lasting impact on your customers.
Ready to get started with a top-notch eCommerce accounting solution? Schedule a Demo today!