Accounting 101

balance-sheet Saasu Online Accounting

When you’re starting out your small business, it can be hard to make sense of the accounting side of things, specifically how to code transactions and how it all works. Even when you’re a veteran, you might rely on someone else to do this for you.

But understanding a few basic accounting principles is absolute key, to keep the finger on the pulse of your financials and understand how your decisions might impact them.

Here are a few basic principles that will help you keep your financials in order and get better insights into your business.

What is a chart of accounts and how do I make it work for me?

A chart of accounts is a simple way for your business to categorise every transaction (money) that comes in and goes out of your business. In Saasu you have a built in chart of accounts made up of accounts that act as categories for all of your transactions (you can create more when needed).

These accounts track everything, but we can see them in five main buckets – Assets, Liabilities, Equity, Income, Expenses and Cost of Sales.

Here’s an outline of each:

Assets: Everything your business owns that has a measurable value. This could be office furniture; cars, inventory or invoices that people still owe you money on (Accounts Receivable).

Liabilities: Everything your business owes a measurable amount of money on. This could be a bank loan or purchase invoices that you still owe money on (Accounts Payable).

Equity: This is money that the business owes to its owners, such as money you put into the business, shareholder money and money left over after paying all the bills (earnings).

Income: This is money that has been earned through Sales (also can include interest from bank accounts and other sources).

Expenses: This is money that has been spent in the day to day running of your business, such as paying the electricity bill, gas for the car, rent etc.

Cost of Sales: This is used to capture the cost of buying in inventory to sell, so it helps calculate your profit. For example, if I purchase an item for $5 and sell it in my store for $8, my cost of sales is $5.

In accounting, we use the accounts to categorise every transaction. This helps us, as business owners, to understand where money is being spent and earned so we can make better decisions on how to manage our business.

Here’s an example to explain:

You make a service sale for $50 + GST ($55 in total) and you want to enter this in Saasu.

– Click on Sales > Add
– On the Edit Sale page enter the relevant information, select the Income: Sales account and the G1 tax code

When you save this, Saasu will do the following to your accounts to categorise the information:

Asset: Accounts Receivable – Debit $55 (waiting for payment)
Income: Sales – Credit $50 (to show income earned)
Liability: Tax Collected on Sales – Credit $5 (to show money owed in tax)

How does this help me run my business?

  • Understand where your business is

Your chart of accounts will help you understand many things about your business. The first is what you own, what you owe and how much money has been made for the owners (shareholders of the company) – this is called your Assets, Liabilities and Equity in your chart of accounts. It is best represented by your Balance Sheet report (Reports > Balance Sheet). This will show you all the Assets that the business owns, minus all the Liabilities the business owes, to leave you an amount of Equity, which is money owed to the owners of the business.

Expert tip: Create a ratio to measure changes in your business – Equity: Liabilities is a useful one. This will tell you how much your business is financed by debt to others, such as the bank. The more this becomes the more you will have to keep up with repayments and interest payments on debt which can hurt small businesses.

  • Understand how profitable your business is

The Profit and Loss reports in Saasu (Reports > Profit and Loss Summary/Detail) will help you understand how every transaction marked to an Income account, minus every expense and cost of sales (goods), equals the profit of your company. This report helps you identify where you’re spending too much money and reduce this in order to reduce your expenses and increase your profit.

Expert tip: Go searching for information; use the Profit and Loss detail report to understand where your money is being spent and how much of a return is being made. As your cost of sales and expenses increase so should your income otherwise you will soon be unprofitable. Run reports over different periods; if your expenses and cost of sales are increasing but your income is not, there may be some inefficiency in your business or you may need to raise your prices.

  • Search for issues

Sometimes your accounts are just off balance to what you expect them to be and in Saasu we have a good report to find any issues. The General Ledger Detail report (Reports > General Ledger Detail) allows you to run a report for all accounts or just focusing on one over a certain time period to see all the transactions marked against that account. This can be very useful in chasing down errors or identifying discrepancies.

Just a quick note to say that Scott’s post is not to be taken as financial advice. They’re simply insights drawn from his experience as an Associate CPA. If you need financial advice for your business, please contact a professional.

New to Saasu? Learn more here.

Small business newsletter - Saasu Online Accounting

Cloud + eCommerce + Saasu = Australian Manufacturer’s Success

Manufacturing small business success - Saasu Online Accounting

The Wrapping Paper Company are a successful Australian manufacturer that can teach a thing or two about running a successful online business and how to go about choosing the right tools to make it happen. They’re also a beloved Saasu customer.

We interviewed Harry Dam, one of Wrapco’s founders, and he shared the pitfalls and successes of running Wrapco online and how he overcame some of his biggest challenges in business.

We explore Wrapco’s story in-depth to give you inspiration, a sense of what’s involved in running a successful online business and how you can use Saasu, combined with other tools, to make it happen. Let’s dive in…

What’s your business and product? Describe it in 1 to 3 sentences.
The Wrapping Paper Company Pty Ltd (Wrapco) is Australia’s leading designer and manufacturer of gift wrap products and accessories for complimentary gift wrapping. We’re a B2B company that started trading in June 1997 and the only manufacturer in Australia producing a comprehensive range. We also export to New Zealand and other customers worldwide.

How did you come up with the idea for your business? Give us a little bit of the history.
My wife Carolyn & I ran a graphic design studio for a few years prior to starting Wrapco. We designed product packaging and developed marketing strategies for clients which would often generate huge sales revenue for our clients.

The opportunity came up when a client’s business entered voluntary liquidation. We decided to buy the business and start it again as Wrapco, so we could design and manufacture products of our own for retailers.

It was a steep learning curve for us and during the first 8 years we continued running our design studio on the side.

How big is your business now?
We’ve become the leader in our market segment. We employ 11 full time staff and, when necessary, casual staff in peak seasons. Our manufacturing plant is just under 2000 square metres and is based in Braeside, Victoria.

What do you think were the key success factors that got your business from its humble beginnings to what it is now?
Until Wrapco entered the market, poor design, quality and service by suppliers indicated there was a great opportunity to lift the game.

We were determined to improve those three areas. We launched new products into the market and we continue to find new designs and ideas to remain relevant to our customers. Because we manufacture locally, we can be lean in our systems, inventory and product design.

We launch new designs for each season or occasion. This makes it hard for our opposition to keep up. Sadly, our designs are often blatantly copied and manufactured overseas by our competitors, but there’s little we can do to control this. We’ve found that litigation doesn’t work so we continue to design new product.

What’s your favourite part of running an e-commerce business?
It’s 24/7 and it’s never off. Although we always had a website, it wasn’t until 2003 that we got an eCommerce site. Before then, we employed 6 salespeople in Australia but found it challenging to reach potential customers in the entire country. At that time we surveyed our 2000 customers to understand how we could connect better and the majority were eager to do it online. For small retail stores this was a real bonus as they often don’t have time to see sales reps.

That’s when we started eCommerce and never looked back. We now have just under 30,000 customers online. We no longer have sales reps and we rely 100% on our 3 websites to sell. We also use newsletters and social media to communicate with our existing and potential customers.

It still staggers me when orders are placed after midnight. You wonder what people are up to, but that’s the beauty of eCommerce.

As you scaled your business, what systems did you use to support your online business?
As Wrapco continued to grow, in some years over 30% pa, we realised we needed to become more efficient to continue as an Australian manufacturer.

We decided to look at all aspects of our business. First, we looked at manual entering of online orders into our previous accounting system, MYOB. The first attempt to automate this was diabolical, as MYOB had major limitations. A few years later we came across a product which connected MYOB and our eCommerce sites. It worked at the time, but due to the limitations of MYOB’s database architecture, it stopped any further advancement for us.

A developer started working with us to improve our websites and they also developed a cloud based warehouse and shipping software based on our immediate requirements called PACSAAS. Over the past 3 years, it has been refined to incorporate all aspects of online order management, warehouse management, inventory control, barcoding and shipping and consignment management. PACSAAS reduced a manual 18 step order handling process into a simple 2 step process.

We’ve processed thousands of orders and reduced our labour costs by well over $200,000 pa. The efficiency has allowed our sales to grow while reducing staffing levels through natural attrition.

In the past 2 years we’ve started working with APIs and that’s where Saasu has been an absolute dream. With Saasu’s features we could see the writing was on the wall as far as in-house bookkeeping was concerned and, early last year, our full time bookkeeper resigned. Instead or rehiring, we automated nearly all of the standard bookkeeping processes using APIs that run automatically in the cloud connecting our eCommerce sites, Saasu and PACSAAS.

I like to think of APIs as our personal software robots that can do automated tasks at preset periods of time. APIs integrate all our transactions, sales, payment gateway transactions, reconciliations, purchase orders, inventory control, shipping and some online communications. We now use Saasu to manage the accounts of 6 different businesses we operate.

Because we no longer used MYOB, we got rid of our internal Windows server system. The cloud has become our new server environment.

We now use Google Professional (Google Apps for Work) for email, office software and file storage space. Google has been an amazing decision and has streamlined internal communication, quoting and communicating with custom printing clients.

Did your accountant support the move to Saasu?
They needed convincing about the benefits of Saasu and why we chose to use it. Being a manufacturer, real-time inventory control was a must for us and they now see Saasu works to our advantage. At BAS time, other than a few minor bank feeds and transaction tweaks, we’re ready to go immediately to the accountants for their final review and lodgement.

There was a time previously when it would take over a month to catch up on Christmas sales transactions being reconciled and settled.

Moving to Saasu has allowed us to do this in a manner that all national and international transactions can be managed seamlessly without human intervention. These transactions are then all fed into PACSAAS for managing stock, packing and shipping orders via various shippers seamlessly.

The final part of this efficiency equation is to develop an in-house, stripped down ERP system to coordinate all of our manufacturing processes.

What key financial metrics do you use to guide your decisions? How do they influence you?
Business growth has occurred organically over the years and often we make decisions keeping lifestyle and our family in mind.

We’re mindful of how we’re tracking daily and we’re extremely conservative when it comes to borrowing. Our business has always been cash positive without an overdraft and we tend to only commit to new borrowing if and when we’re positive we can afford to do so.

Some of the key metrics we look at is Real Revenue Growth and Product Pricing Index adjusting in relation to our competitors’ prices as well as costs of materials and currency fluctuations.

We look closely at our Operating Expenses and ensure that where possible we can reduce standing costs. We regularly review cost of insurance, telcos, car expenses etc.. For example, by installing an optical fibre line into the building, we were able to shift to Voip and save thousands per annum.

We also recently looked at our Total Cost to Manufacture and reviewed pricing from all major raw material suppliers. Ink is one of our major manufacturing costs. We found by shifting to a new supplier we could save 20% plus in cost and get a better quality product.

For all Australian manufacturers, labour costs can be a real killer. We monitor closely our Labour to Sales ratios to ensure that it’s within industry benchmarks. Our labour costs decreased dramatically with the Increased efficiency our systems provided.

What resources and key tools are crucial for your business?
Thanks to the cloud, our systems changed massively. The most crucial tool is the administration backend within PACSAAS. This allows us to monitor the status of all sales and inventory levels on a minute basis.

This information is fed via APIs into Saasu along with feeds from our bank and payment gateways. At any point in time we can see exactly what’s happening with orders and what stock is required.

We’ve automated a daily alert system that details low stock levels, incorrect payment settlements and delayed orders. This allows us to monitor forward orders and plan production to meet due dates.

Before PACSAAS was developed, we committed to customers to ship within 7 days when goods were out of stock. Now, it’s rare if an order is delayed more than 1 day.

Saasu allows us to incorporate real-time inventory levels and values. It has become crucial to know exactly what our net position is at anytime. Saasu can allow our financial advisers to be informed immediately of our situation. We see Saasu as being the control centre direct to our accountants and reporting to the ATO. We also regularly use Saasu to ensure that our cash position is enough to meet payment obligations to the ATO and suppliers.

Using Google Docs allows us to share quotes, spreadsheets and files securely with clients or suppliers outside of our company, allowing for quicker responses.

What has been your biggest challenge so far in business and how did you overcome it?
I’ve been in business just under 40 years and the biggest challenge to date has been to survive as an Australian manufacturer. By any metric set within our industry or even manufacturing, our manufacturing business should not exist and yet it still does.

Providing real jobs in Australia where people get to make something great really matters to us. We’re blessed that we work within an industry where we can design and manufacture beautiful things that people desire and will pay for.

The first thing we learnt is that we had to stick with what we do well. Don’t diversify that much that you become all things to all customers. Stay with what you know and do it to the very best of your ability, provide great service and excellent quality.

Also know that when you do provide a great product customers will pay immediately, so don’t give credit unless it’s essential. Over 80% of our transactions are paid before shipping which in a B2B world is rarely heard of.

By default everything we do is design-focused and we’ll not let the mundane become a solution.

We also understand the impact our products have on the environment. We want to be as green as we possibly can be, which is still one of our greatest challenges.

All our raw paper stock is either 100% recycled or sourced from chain of custody FFC plantation fibre. We use Australian manufactured inks without heavy metals or harmful toxins that meet the highest environmental standards in the world. Over 95% of all the raw material is used and less than 5% is sent to be recycled.

We’ve installed a 60kw solar system that generates 100% of the power we use.

We import a range of accessories that compliment our product range. So we ensure that the manufacturers are also environmentally aware and respect our desire to not provide products that could be detrimental to our environment.

What advice would you share with entrepreneurs looking to start their online business from scratch?
Don’t hesitate, give it a go, now! I believe there are still too many Australian businesses without a genuine online presence. They may have a landing page with an online catalogue and contact info but today that’s not good enough.

Businesses need to embrace the possibilities of the online space and look at the real immediate benefits there are in using the cloud. The online space gives amazing opportunity to develop a business with minimal costs but there can be pitfalls.

Business owners should familiarise themselves with what’s available and how it works. If online is to be the only source of sales, they need to do their due diligence on the providers.

Cybercrime is becoming a daily reality and good quality server providers can ensure that not only data and transactions are protected but that your business remains online. Our website was hacked a few years ago and we ended up being offline for 10 days. This can cause serious damage to any business especially if you rely heavily on having an eCommerce site.

The overarching caveat has to be, do not expect others to do this for you, educate yourself. As the owner of a business it’s your responsibility to be aware of what can happen and be prepared for any eventuality.

Small business newsletter - Saasu Online Accounting

Introducing Spotcap add-on for Saasu

Spotcap Small Business Loans & Saasu Online Accounting

We’re super excited to announce our latest add-on: Spotcap.

Spotcap provides fast and flexible loans to micro, small and medium-sized businesses to help them grow. Their application process is simple and easy and offers seamless integration with Saasu.

Saasu customers can apply online in as little as five minutes and once approved, access up to $250,000.

We love this integration because it’s completely aligned with our mission of liberating small business. In this case, from the trap of traditional lenders who take advantage of small business owners by charging exhorbitant fees and/or making it difficult for them to get a loan.

The highlights:

  • Apply in minutes – Enter some basic personal and business information, connect your Saasu file and your business bank account.
  • Fast, flexible funds – Once approved, your credit line of up to $250,000 is available within 24 hours.
  • Flexible repayments – To help support the growth of your business, Spotcap offer flexible repayment schedules of up to 12 months.
  • No hidden charges or early repayment fees and Spotcap uses the latest technology to protect your business data.
  • Flexible withdrawals – You can withdraw what you need, when it suits you and only pay for what you take.

In a nutshell, as a small business owner, you provide access to your bank accounts and/or online accounting software and plug in tax and financial statements, which Spotcap’s credit model uses to assess how much finance it will provide and at what interest rate. When the loan is approved, you’re ready to go.

To celebrate the end of financial year in Australia, Spotcap are offering Saasu customers a discount of 1.5% on the origination fee for the first Spotcap loan you take. This could be a saving of up to $3,750! The offer is valid until 31st July 2016 and you can redeem it here.

What do you think of this new add-on? Leave a comment below and let us know what challenges you’ve faced in the past with traditional lenders and how you think the Spotcap service changes things for small business.

Read Saasu’s warning about borrowing.

New to Saasu? Learn how to automate your accounting here.

 

 

 

Connect your apps to Saasu for less

Saasu Online Accounting Software Add-ons It’s the end of another financial year (how fast did that go?!), perfect timing to review systems and tweak processes for the year ahead.

If one of your goals is having more time to focus on what’s important in the new year, integrating your business systems is a great step to help you achieve that.

That’s why we got together with some of our ad-on partners; to bring you some great deals to help connect your apps for less. From payments, to e-commerce, reporting and more, there’s definitely a good deal for you.

PAYMENTS

OFX

OFX are a leading provider of online international payments services across the globe. In Saasu you can click ‘Pay with OFX’ on your international purchase invoices to access great exchange rates and save money on fees.

Register for Pay with OFX between now and the end of July and get 5 FEE-FREE Foreign Exchange transfers (valued at AUD15x5 = AUD75) + refer a friend who uses Saasu to register with Pay with OFX and OFX will add another 5 FEE-FREE for both of you!

To get this awesome deal, please apply before 31st July 2016 – your FEE-FREE deals will not expire. Just email customerservice@ofx.com with your OFX username, the code Saasu16 and the OFX team will apply the deal to your profile.


EXPENSES

IQBoxy

IQBoxy helps you track, analyse and report on business spending. IQBoxy is a Mobile & Watch app which uses machine learning and real-time OCR to automate your expense management with seamless Saasu integration.

New IQBoxy customers who connect their Saasu Account inside the IQBoxy app before 1st October 2016 will receive 50% OFF their monthly PRIME membership for the first 6 months ($18 value per user).

To redeem:

  1. Get the IQBoxy app from iTunes
  2. Register in-app
  3. Email hello@iqboxy.com with your registered email and this code: SAASUEOFY (prior to 1st October 2016)


INVOICE THEMES

Saasu Themes

Saasu Themes enables businesses who use Saasu to bring beautiful design to their accounting documents.

If you need a new theme that makes you look slicker for your customers, this deal is for you.

Get 25% off any theme when you purchase before 31/07/16. To redeem, just use the code Saasu2Themes25 at the checkout process and the discount will be applied to your total.


LOANS

Spotcap

Spotcap provides fast and flexible loans to micro, small and medium-sized businesses to help them grow. The application process is simple and Spotcap offers a seamless integration with Saasu. Saasu customers can apply online in as little as five minutes and once approved, access up to $250,000.

Saasu customers who successfully apply, are approved and draw down a loan, get a discount of 1.5% on the origination fee for the first loan they take with Spotcap. This could be a saving of up to $3,750! The offer is valid until 31st July 2016 and you can redeem it here.


TIME & PROJECTS

AroFlo

Combine the accounting power of Saasu with the strength of a full featured job management system for an easy flow of information. AroFlo is the perfect solution for busy tradies who need to run their business on the go.

Any Saasu customer who signs up to AroFlo before 31st July 2016 will receive a free Saasu integration link, normally valued at $750. To take advantage of this limited time offer, Saasu customers must mention this promotion on sign up.

*Offer is only available to new AroFlo customers who pay their full AroFlo set-up costs prior to 31st  July 2016. Free Saasu integration covers one company file only. Any additional integration links for other company files will be charged at the regular rate of $750 ex-GST.


E-COMMERCE

Neto
Neto is a leading Australian cloud-based commerce platform designed for small and medium-sized retailers and wholesalers.

Until 30th of June*, get six months free of the following add-on modules**:

  • Neto Connect – allows you to integrate with Saasu (normally $39—saving you $234)
  • Neto POS*** – links your retail store seamlessly with your online store (normally $39—saving you $234)

Get offer >>>

*The offer is valid until the 30 June 2016, and is valid for new customers only.
**Add on modules are free when taken with a Neto subscription
***This offer does not include any hardware required to operate POS.

OneSaas Ecommerce and Fulfilment Offers

Sell online?
OneSaas can integrate your current e-commerce site and fulfilment service with Saasu so you can automate the syncing of your order, accounting and shipping data. Save time and get accurate up-to-date information on invoices, inventory, customers, payments, and products.

You can integrate Saasu with these e-commerce sites: eBay, WooCommerce, BigCommerce, Shopify, Magento, Volusion, SparkPay, OpenCart, eCorner, and ePages.

Ready to ship?
You can integrate Saasu with these fulfilment apps and automatically sync your orders: Shipwire, Next Logistics, NPF, PikPak, WFDS, Coghlan, eSotre Logistics

Saasu customers receive 25% discount off ALL OneSaas integrations with the EOFY special. To redeem, just use your promo code SAASUEOFY when you subscribe at the end of your 7-day free trial. Offer ends July 31, 2016.

Don’t have an online store yet?
eBay, in partnership with OneSaas, is offering new eBay customers a free 3 month subscription for an eBay Featured Store*. Create your own branded shopfront on eBay and instantly access new customers by promoting your products on Australia’s #1 marketplace.

To redeem this offer simply click here. Offer valid until 31st July 2016.

*Free Feature Store Offer: Valid for a free feature store for 3 months from subscription. Offer valid until 31st July 2016. Offer only valid for new eBay stores or or accounts that have not sold anything in the last 6 months.


REPORTS

Clear Jelly

The Clear Jelly business intelligence add-on gives you full control, insight and simulation options with your Saasu data. You can easily create automatically updating reports, interactive dash boards and powerful budgeting work flows exactly as you need them in minutes.

The great thing is you can combine data from other sources too, so you have a complete picture of your business.

The Clear Jelly team have two deals for you:

  • Get 1h hour FREE consultation/training valued at $199 with every paid subscription (i.e. if trial is continued after the 1st free month or after the first paid month of a subscription.)
  • With every 12 month subscription, get a FREE half day training/Dashboard design course valued at $990 in either Jedox/Power BI using the Clear Jelly model or another source.

The offers will be automatically applied for every Saasu customer that signs up during the campaign period.


WEB DEVELOPMENT

Xfive

Xfive offer website development, html email development and website application development services.

Their team are offering Saasu customers 10% off all their web development services. So if you want a project done, just submit a quote request via https://www.xfive.co/quote/ or hello@xfive.co, using the code Saasu2Website10.


POINT-OF-SALE

Kounta

Kounta is point of sale software connecting the world’s best stores. It works beautifully with Saasu.

The folks at Kounta are giving Saasu customers 3 months free when you sign up by 31st July 2016. All you have to do is sign up using this link.

All these deals were kindly offered by the awesome add-on partners listed above. If you have any questions about the offers, please contact their teams directly. If you want to browse more Saasu add-ons, learn more here.

New to Saasu? Learn how to automate your accounting here.

2 business metrics you should know now

Saasu Online Accounting - business insights

In business, there are a number of indicators that tell you you’re doing well.

It could be that sales are up week on week or you just have a gut feeling that things are going in the right direction.

The numbers in Saasu are a great way to understand how healthy your business is, and, just like your own health, you should be doing regular check ups of your business health.

So here are two quick health checks you can make, what they mean and how to improve them.

Inventory Turnover

Inventory turnover = Cost of goods sold/Inventory

The inventory turnover rate is the number of times you turnover your inventory per period. For example, if my cost of goods for the year was $1000 and my current inventory value is $200, I’ve turned over my inventory five times in that year (this can be done over any period; it’s also more reliable to take an average inventory figure from the period).

Why is this number important?

Inventory turnover is a key metric for any business that keeps inventory on hand. It tells you how quickly you’re selling your inventory and subsequently how healthy your cashflow is.

As a general rule, the higher the number is, the better – keeping in mind this is subjective; a company selling newspapers is going to have a lot higher turnover rate than a construction company. The longer stock spends sitting in your store or warehouse, the more cashflow it eats up that could be used elsewhere.

Where do I find this information in Saasu?

You can find the cost of goods on your Profit or Loss report (Reports > Profit or Loss Summary) and your Inventory figure is on your Balance Sheet (Reports > Balance Sheet). Make sure the dates for these reports cover the same time spans.

How do I improve it?

A good way to improve this is to identify inventory items that aren’t selling as fast as the rest of your items, using Item History Reports. The longer you hold an item, the more you could do with the money that’s tied up in it, so more return should be expected when it is sold.

If this is not the case, you should look at how you can make the item sell faster. This may be a cheaper price, better advertising or simply not stocking the item anymore.

Working Capital Ratio

Ratio of Current Assets : Current Liabilities

For example:

Current Assets = $250,000
Current Liabilities = $100,000

Working Capital Ratio = 2.5 : 1

This ratio, along with the related measure of simply working capital (current assets – current liabilities), is a measure of a company’s ability to pay its short term debts. It can be useful for a company to understand health, short term liquidity and capacity to take on further debt.

Why is this number important?

The working capital ratio is very important to understand how well equipped your company is to pay off short term debt. For example, is the money to be received from Accounts Receivable expected to be enough to cover Accounts Payable?

Creditors or lenders may also be interested in this before giving you a line of credit or loaning money to understand the risk involved.

Where do I find this information in Saasu?

Both the Current Assets and Current Liabilities figures can be found on your Balance Sheet Report (Reports > Balance Sheet).

How do I improve it?

This number is subjective in that it will depend heavily on your industry. A ratio of 2 : 1 is sometimes seen as desirable although it’s subjective for each industry. Improvements can be made by shortening the time it takes to be paid by using tools such as Online Invoicing, negotiating longer terms with suppliers or keeping minimal stock on hand by using Stock Alerts and Minimum Reorder Quantities in Saasu.

Just a quick note to say that Scott’s post is not to be taken as financial advice. They’re simply insights drawn from his experience as an Associate CPA. If you need financial advice for your business, please contact a professional.

New to Saasu? Learn more here.

Saasu now connects with 650+ of your favourite apps

Zapier & Saasu Online Accounting Integration

Your time is valuable. Why waste it doing tedious tasks that a computer could handle for you?

Saasu’s integration with Zapier (which has officially gone from beta to global!) gives you that time back. It lets you connect and automate more than 650 apps, so you can focus on the important stuff.

Here’s how it works:

Zapier watches your apps for new data, and kicks off actions based on the rules that you set. For example, Zapier can:

  • Create Saasu invoices automatically for any new orders you receive in your ecommerce store
  • Create new invoices in Saasu for every payment/sale you receive via your payments apps (e.g. Stripe or PayPal)
  • Update existing or create new contacts between Saasu and CRM, email marketing and other apps
  • Export invoices from Saasu automatically into a spreadsheet app

… and so much more.

The best part, it all happens in the background. You can visit our page on Zapier to discover more use cases and sign up for a free account.

You can browse Saasu integrations and create your own from scratch on Zapier, or get started with these examples – they’re ready to go.

And if you have a workflow you need to automate that you don’t see there, let us know. We’d love your feedback!

We already have two items on our Dev radar:

  • The ability to email invoices automatically
  • Multiple line items support

To help us decide what to slot in next on our dev map for this integration, let us know what items you’d like to see in the pipeline. You can leave a comment below, or send us an email via service@saasu.com. Meanwhile, enjoy integrating your apps with Zapier!

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Saasu tips for people who aren’t techies

Learning Saasu Online Accounting

Here at Saasu, we spend our time talking with small business owners and operators every day and we learn a lot about what makes them tick.

One thing I’ve noticed is that there are a huge number of business owners out there who’ve created thriving small businesses by being the proverbial ‘people person’. I really enjoy speaking to these people and almost always the first thing they tell me is “I’m not a techie but I want to use Saasu.”

Everyone of these business owners can see the clear advantages of using a cloud accounting system, but the reality is it can be a big leap if you don’t consider yourself to be a technology-savvy person.

So here are a few general tips that I give to those who have difficulty working with online accounting (or any new tech tool).

Go sightseeing

When I go travelling I always try to fit in as much sightseeing as I can to learn about the new place. I do the same when I try out a new computer program.

When I first start I click on everything, except the Save or Delete buttons. I spend a bit of time just moving around the program and finding out how to get to each page.

When you first use Saasu it can be daunting but it’s designed to make the extremely complex task of accounting easier to do.

Click on Sales at the top and then click on the Add button and you can see that the next page asks you for everything you need to create a new invoice. Remember, while you’re sightseeing, just don’t click on Save. Try this on a few pages and you will soon get the hang of it.

Clearing your cookies and cache

This is something that can help a lot. When you’re using your internet browser (Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Safari or FireFox etc.) the browser will save a little bit from each page you visit in your cookie and cache data.

This is harmless but if you don’t maintain your computer it can make the internet browser run very slowly. Pages can load slowly or have errors and this can affect your use of Saasu.

I highly recommend you clear your cookie and cache data regularly. The method you use depends on which internet browser you’re using so either do a Google search for how to clear cookie and cache data in your specific browser or get someone in the office to do it for you.

Note down the steps you took

If you’re unsure of something you’re doing, I recommend that you take a quick note of the steps you’re taking. This way, if you make a mistake, you can simply do the steps again in reverse order.

Did you create a Purchase invoice, add a Payment to it and then create a Sales invoice with the same inventory? To reverse it, simply delete the Sales invoice, delete the Payment and then delete the Purchase invoice.

The help Centre is your friend!

It sounds ridiculous, but it actually is. It’s where I go to learn about the obscure parts of Saasu that I haven’t quite memorised yet. The help page does have a huge amount of material that covers an equally huge number of business cases. I highly recommend you use the search box in the top right hand to search for what you need.

Remember why you use Saasu and ask if you have an issue

We work to design a system that makes managing your finances easier so you can do what you do best.

If you find yourself hammering away and getting an error or if you just don’t know how to do a specific entry in Saasu, check the help notes.

If you can’t find it there, simply click on the CogWheel icon in the top right of your Saasu file and click on Contact Us. Let us know as much detail as you can about your issue and we’ll be happy to help you.

Even if you don’t consider yourself a techie person, a little confidence and a little curiosity can take you a long way with Saasu and any new software or app you try.

Are you new to Saasu? Try it FREE for 30 days!

SuperStream Simplified

superstream superannuation - Saasu Online Accounting

[Image source: ATO]

Echidna Sewing have been a long customer of Saasu’s. Erik Merkley, Echidna’s General Manager, had a few questions for our Customer Experience last week about SuperStream and, after talking to us, he ended up writing a blog post about the changes, and how easy they are to implement in Saasu. So if you want to find out just how easy managing Superannuation for your business can be, read on…

It’s not every day that the ATO makes life easier for a small business owner. I was as surprised as anyone to discover just how awesome their new SuperStream standard is.

SuperStream is actually a way for superannuation funds to talk amongst themselves, and the details don’t really matter. What’s great for small business is the new “clearing houses” it enables.

Like most businesses, we used to pay super for our 30 employees in a tedious, repetitive process. We’d work out the super outstanding for each employee, write cheques or BPay to over a dozen different funds, then login to a multitude of online systems to submit payment details. Yikes!

Now we use a clearing house (we’re with SunSuper, but all the majors offer something similar).

Every three months, we run the Superannuation Payments Report in Saasu. This works out the outstanding amounts for each employee and super fund. With one click, Saasu creates the purchases & applies payments automatically. It then creates a special file in the SuperStream format. This gets uploaded to SunSuper’s online clearing house and they take a single direct debit from our bank account – for ALL our employees!

SuperStream Superannuation Saasu Online Accounting

They look after splitting up the payment and forwarding it on to other funds, and make sure those payments go to the right employee account as the right contribution type. Paying super becomes a ten minute process from beginning to end. Plus you never have to deal directly with a superannuation fund again!

It might sound complicated, but SuperStream is actually pretty easy to set up and a huge time saving if you have more than a couple of employees. It’s also worth pointing out that it’s compulsory for all businesses in Australia from 30 June 2016.

The ATO might have made a confusing website and explained SuperStream poorly, but they really have reduced the bureaucratic mess that superannuation used to be.

Erik Merkley, General Manager of Echdina Sewing
Beloved Saasu customer

Echidna Sewing are one of Australia’s leading suppliers of sewing and embroidery machines for home and business. Embroidering your logo on staff shirts in-house saves money, avoids long lead times and makes it so easy to personalise. Visit www.echidnaclub.com.au or call 1800 000 360.

If you want more details about how to handle SuperStream in Saasu, head over to our Help Centre and check out this article. If you have questions after that, get in touch with our Customer Experience Team. We’d love to help. 

3 Industries, 3 Ways to Work With Saasu

Saasu Online Accounting for tradies, consultants & photographers

Online accounting comes in all shapes and sizes and it’s an integral part of your business that will be used for every transaction that you process.

So it’s important to be able to use this tool flexibly for your industry to get an edge in business.

For this reason. we wanted to pass on three quick ways to use Saasu in three different industries to help you get ahead in business.

Tradies

The ATO requires businesses in the Building and Construction industries to report total payments they make to each contractor for building and construction services each year.

Saasu allows you to mark certain contacts as contractors and create a report for the ATO. Here’s how to do it.

Consultants

A lot of consultants bill by the time they spend on a job. Saasu allows you to do this easily by creating an item for the smallest increment of billable time, which is not inventoried.

You can then use this to bill your time out as a multiple of this item within your business. Here’s the full guide on time billing.

Graphic Designers/Photographers

As a graphic designer or photographer your business is based on the image that it presents. To create a good reputation, it’s important to have that brand image flow through to every facet of your business, from the front end of the website, through to the final product and even the invoices you send out.

We understand the importance of this so our software allows you the freedom to design your own HTML/CSS invoice templates. Check all the details here. Not HTML/CSS savvy? Check out our partner SaasuThemes for some great designs, ready to go.

Saasu is used across a huge variety of industries and businesses. We’ve designed it to be flexible and to be a tool that you can use to save time and money while managing your businesses finances.

We work with thousands of micro to medium businesses who have outgrown spreadsheets or legacy software and need a safe, secure, cost effective solution for their accounting needs.

Are you new to Saasu? Try it FREE for 30 days!

3.5 Hacks to Work Faster in Saasu

Working in a small business, you’re constantly being pulled in every direction.

Every day you look for better ways to squeeze an extra few minutes of efficiency from your workflow.

For me personally, this means finding quicker ways to do things so I can get more done, help more people and answer questions faster. So here are my favourite small hacks that can speed up your work in Saasu.

Printing Invoices

Customers often like to receive copies of all outstanding invoices instead of a bulk statement that just shows totals for each invoice.

I had a customer call me and ask for a better way to do this as they were opening each invoice, clicking on Print PDF, saving it and then moving to the next one. This was so time-consuming!

What you can do is use the search parameters on the Sales screen to display only the Unpaid invoices for only that customer. After clicking on Show, you can click on the tick box in the top header row of the results to select all and then click on Print PDF. By saving this to PDF you’ll have a copy of all of the Invoices, in full, to send to your customer.

Invoicing - Saasu Online Accounting

Getting a better picture of your bank feed

Okay, so this one is not so much a Saasu hack as it is an internet browser hack. When you view your bank feed in Saasu, you can view 25 transactions at a time. This is so that the page loads fast and you’re not drowned in information. But sometimes you want to see more.

What you can do is scroll down to the bottom of your bank feed page and click on the next button to move to the second page. This will change the URL (the web address in your web browser) and display the following text: pagesize=25.

By simply changing the number from 25 to say 100 or 1000 you can view a large number of bank transactions on one page. Of course this will take a little longer to load but it’s a great way to get a better view of your bank feed transactions.

Bank Feeds - Saasu Online Accounting

Use the Force of Ctrl + F (Command + F for you Apple users)

One of my favourite features of Saasu has always been the search function JUMP. It instantly brings up results for customer names, invoice numbers or invoice values, which is very useful.

But on some occasions I want to find something that JUMP can’t search for. For example, I want to search my bank feed for a deposit from a customer who has used an obscure reference for the transaction.

I can easily do this by going to the page that I want to search and using the keyboard combination of Control + F or Command + F (for Apple users) to bring up a search box that you can use to search every part of that page.

This is also useful when sifting through a large General Ledger Detail report when I want to jump from account to account. Instead of scrolling forever, I can just use the find function to skip to the one I want.

Command + F - Saasu Online Accounting

Contact Us (the 0.5)

Contact Us (in Saasu) is one feature I love to see our customers using. When you run into an issue, the best ways to get through it are to check our Help Centre or Contact Us. We are here to help make your workday easier and I really enjoy working with customers.

Now the reason why I’ve put this in my list of favourite hacks is because when you submit a question to us using the Contact Us form, Saasu automatically provides our team with information about who you are and which file you’re using.

Contact Us - Saasu Online Accounting

By also giving us clear information on what you’re looking to do or what you’re having trouble with, we can provide you with quick help to save you time.

We spend all day working with Saasu so we can find the fastest and best ways for you to run your small business financials without a headache.

Now we’d love to hear from you. Did you find these hacks useful? Leave us a comment or email service@saasu.com with your feedback. And if you’d like to receive more articles like this, sign up to our newsletter here. We won’t spam you, only good quality content, we promise!