Become a Member

Bookkeeping for Small Businesses

Who keeps the books for your business? You know the dreaded invoicing, receiving, payables, reconciling, filing, general ledgers, liabilities, budgets, and reports. Many small businesses do not have a dedicated accountant or financial manager to take care of these tasks, which means that, often times, the job falls to a business leader or owner.

Chances are, if you are an entrepreneur, you have some grasp of handling the books and have been doing some aspect of it while your business has been growing. As your business evolves, however, the job of balancing the books and taking care of the bills or payroll gets more complicated.

That’s why Enterprise Center is offering Business Owners and Startups a seminar entitled “Bookkeeping Fundamentals for Small Business.” Every Tuesday and Thursday from 6-9pm, from May 21 to June 6, you can learn the basic steps of setting up and keeping track of your money in a simple, accurate manner that works for you.  

Bookkeeping doesn’t need to be the dreaded chore that keeps your sheltered in your office well into the evening. There are some fantastic apps that can help keep you organized and are fairly intuitive to use. Our advice is to do a bit of research before you download any software, as each app offers something a little different. Your business’s unique needs can be met with one of them.

QuickBooks

QuickBooks is a name that you probably recognize as it is one of the most popular small business accounting software programs out there. People love it because it has multiple tailored versions and top-of-the-line features. QuickBooks is meant for people who are not accounting experts. They put all the information in one, easy-to-use location.

Xero

Xero is great for businesses that are on-the-go and need something a little more mobile. Xero is a mobile app for accounting specifically geared for business leaders who need to do their bookkeeping remotely or while on the road. This is also great in case a client needs a quick update and you want to bring up the numbers on your phone. Xero has served over 1.2 million subscribers around the world.

FreshBooks

FreshBooks is yet another top accounting software that specializes in small business accounting. That means that it is geared for your company in mind, not the larger corporations. Each of the three versions of FreshBooks: Lite, Plus, and Premium, is tailored toward the specific needs of small businesses within a wide range of sizes and structures.

Have questions about keeping the books for your company or need a change in the app that you are currently using? Check out our seminar “Bookkeeping Fundamentals for Small Business” and register today.

 

Getting Real about Goal Setting

Without goals, and plans to reach them, you are like a ship that has set sail with no destination.” — Fitzhugh Dodson

 

At the end of every fiscal year, do you find that you are just short of the goals that you so neatly created months ago? Or do you find that your business team took a left turn and went way off course and have not revisited the goals since the last time they created them? These are two extremely common problems when creating goals for your business.

Every business owner knows that creating and sticking to goals are what drive a business. Without goals, it’s difficult to identify ways you can grow, develop, and move toward continued success. Sometimes, however, when it comes to goal setting, it is easier to take a look at the mistakes that are common rather than the other way around.

Let’s take a look at a common personal goal that thousands of us make every New Year’s Eve and see how we can make it better. Many of us make it a goal or resolution to lose weight every year. While this is a wonderful goal that more of us should attempt, there is something wrong with the goal. Do you know what the mistake is?

The goal of losing weight is too broad. Most business owners make similar mistakes. Goals should be: achievable, measurable, and specific. Let’s rewrite the weight loss goal and see how we can improve it.

How about we change it to, “I will lose 15 pounds within three months.” Or, “I will lose at least two inches off my waist.” Or, “I will be down a dress size,” in the same time frame. Each of these is measurable, achievable, and specific.

Business owners should do the same thing when creating sales goals or any other kind of goal depending upon your field or industry. Each goal should be narrow in scope, have a time frame, and have a way to measure whether the goal has been reached.

Many business leaders use the SMART business model for goal setting. What are your biggest mistakes when setting goals? Do you get overwhelmed with the scope of a project? Do you make the goals too broad? There are a million mistakes that can be made. If you need help, you may want to attend one of our seminars on Setting and Achieving Transformative Goals.

 

Social Media Analytics

So you own a small or medium sized business and you understand the importance of being a presence on social media. In fact, you have created business pages on the top social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. Maybe you even have joined industry specific platforms like Houzz or Doximity. But how do you know exactly how well your pages are doing? What you really need to do is study the analytics of your pages and see if they are making an impact. Evaluating social media analytic data will tell you whether your pages are performing well or falling flat.

Analytics will help your company focus on what your goals are in regard to being on social media. For example, is your goal to increase “likes” or “tweets”? Is the goal to convert viewers? Is the goal to increase brand awareness?  Analytics can help you fine tune those goals and help you keep track of your performance. In addition analytics will help your company keep track of key performance indicators (KPIs). These can be broken down into: likes and shares your posts receive, replies and comments and (most importantly) clicks your links and content.

If you are a novice to social media analytics you will want to start with some research into what the numbers mean and how to translate those numbers into actions. Google Analytics is one of the most popular analytics tools out there. It can report most anything about your website and traffic, including all the necessary social referrals you’re interested in. One feature of Google Analytics is the ability to create custom dashboards of just the metrics that matter to you. In addition to Google, Buffer (a social media management tool) and True Social Metrics (a dashboard of analytics) can help you examine whether your efforts on social media or working or whether you need to go in another direction.

BLS Provider CPR (1-day Initial or Renewal Course, multiple sessions available)

(Initial or Renewal Course based on the 2015 AHA Guidelines)
Basic Life Support (BLS) is the foundation for saving lives after cardiac arrest. This course teaches both single-rescuer and team basic life support skills for application in both in-facility and prehospital settings. This course is designed for healthcare professionals and other personnel who need to know how to perform CPR and other basic cardiovascular life support skills.

In addition, BLS training can be appropriate for first responders, such as police officers and firefighters, as well as for laypeople whose work brings them into contact with members of the public, such as school, fitness center, or hotel and restaurant employees.

Students must pass a written exam and skills test in order to qualify for a BLS Course Completion Card.
Upon successful completion of this course, students will receive a completion cad valid for 2 years.

Conveniently scheduled on Saturday, please choose the session that works best for you.

REGISTER NOW!

Website Metrics 101

When it comes to websites, gathering data on who visited, how long they stayed, what they looked at and the average session duration, the data can quickly get overwhelming.  Tracking even the most basic of numbers relating to your website can give your business a big advantage over competitors. How, then, can you tell what data is meaningful for the success of your company and what data is extraneous? What scientific measurement, also known as web metrics, should you be most interested in?  Here is a cheat sheet of sorts to help you make sense of your website metrics and hopefully make your company more successful due to them.

Metrics You Should Be Most Interested In 

  • Visitors or Traffic to your Site – How many visitors visited your site on a daily basis?  The number of unique visitors should be of greatest interest to you. Unique visitors represents the count of individual people that visited your site regardless of the number of times they visited your site. So, if person A visits your site once and person B visits your site five times, you will have two unique visitors and six total visits. this number will give you an overall view of the health of your site.
  • Sources of the Traffic – While it is important to know how many  people are visiting your site, it is equally important to know where they came from or how they found you!  Google Analytics breaks down your traffic sources into four broad categories: Organic Search: traffic coming via the search engines, Referral: traffic from another website, Direct: traffic typing your domain into the browser, or Social: traffic from social media. Each source of traffic will tell you a few important snippets of information about your website.
  • Bounce Rate – How many people visit your site but then leave it immediately? This means that a visitor did not find what they were looking for on your site. This “bounce rate” is the equivalent of someone walking in the front door of a store, taking a quick look around, and immediately walking back out the door. The goal of understanding this web metric is to find ways to decrease this number.
  • Conversion Rate – The conversion rate is the percentage of users who take a desired action such as: the number of people who buy something, fill out a contact form, or view a certain page on your site. The reason conversion rate is so important is that it is the ultimate measure of how successful your site is.
  • Average Session Duration – This metric records the average length of a session in hours, minutes, and seconds. The more relevant your site is to the visitor, the longer the average session duration will be since a visitor will spend more time accessing information that interests him.

    .

 

Measuring your Social Media Success

Social networks and blogs continue to dominate Americans’ lives according to a recent Nielsen report on social media. Knowing this, your marketing department is on-the-ball and has been keeping up with posting on many of the social media platforms including: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Houzz, Snap Chat, and Pinterest. But this takes a lot of time and energy. So, how do you know which platform, or posts are driving the most traffic to your website? And which of those are being converted into leads as a direct result of your social media efforts? Here are a few suggestions on how to measure and analyze the impact of those social media efforts.

  • Google Analytics – Google Analytics is a great way of identifying which social media sites send the most traffic to your website. More importantly, it will help to determine which platform needs more attention. Within a matter of minutes, you can have Google Analytics set up to tell you, among other things, the number of daily visits to your site, the demographics of your users, how they got to your site, how long they stay, and which of your pieces of content are most and least popular.
  • Facebook Insights – This tool provides detailed information on Likes, reach, visits, video and people. One of its really cool features is the Posts tab, which allows you to understand when your audience is most active, displaying info by day and time.
  • Hootsuite – While Hootsuite is primarily a Social Media Management tool, it can also give you great analytics. Since Hootsuite allows companies to track and post all of their social media sites in one convenient dashboard, it makes it easy to also see the data from each and how each compares.
  • Tweriod – Similar to Facebook Insight’s function, Tweriod is a free Twitter tool that helps you get the most out of the platform by letting you know the best time to Tweet. Simply sign up with your business Twitter account and enter the email address to where you want the reports sent to.
  • SocialMention is a simple but effective free tool to track the reach of keywords (or mentions) used in your social media campaigns. You can set email alerts for keywords specific to your social media marketing campaign that you need to track across the entire social media web.