What Is This “Cloud Computing” of Which You Speak?

Cloud computing
Recently, a question was asked of me by a friend who isn’t particularly tech savvy. “What is cloud accounting”, he asked?

I pondered for a moment and answered as best I could. “Well…it’s an accounting application that runs in a web browser on the Internet instead of being downloaded and installed on your computer. You log into it from a browser and the data is securely stored ‘in the cloud'”. As soon as I said the word “cloud”, I knew, judging by his expression, that the next question was already being formed: “When you say ‘cloud’ what exactly do you mean?” Read more

Collaborative Cloud Accounting Saves Small Businesses Money

Cloud Accounting
Cloud software and cloud collaboration are more than mere buzzwords. The benefits of cloud applications are their efficiency, anywhere anytime access, and cost savings. Collaboration with web-based software increases a business’s effectiveness, allowing small businesses to share tasks, delegate and work anywhere. Studies suggest that early adopters of cloud applications are already experiencing the benefits and increasing profit as a result. Read more

Why Avoid Low Pricing as a Freelancer or Small Business?

Low pricing as a freelancer
Freelancers and small business owners, particularly those new to their world, are frequently concerned about pricing their products and services too high. It may be, that at first, lower pricing works to get your first contracts or sell your first widgets, but beware of the negative effects that a low pricing strategy can have on your business. Read more

6 Freelance Blogs You Should Follow – Tip of the Advice-Berg

Freelancer Blogs - tip of the advice-berg
If you are a freelancer, you need great advice, tips and inspiration to help you be successful and sustain your freelancing career. There is no better place to get helpful information than freelance blogs or topics.

Why Read Freelance Blogs?

Because freelance blog articles are written by other freelancers who have been right where you are, you are getting advice based on relevant, real-world experiences. In essence, the advice you get is a shortcut to success. Read more

Freelancing Forums List – Community, Help, Advice

Freelancing Forums List
If you are a new freelancer or have been freelancing for a while, you’ll find yourself looking for answers about all aspects of running your freelance business. We’ve compiled a freelancing forums list with overviews of what you’ll find at each forum. Read more

Small Business Forums – Questions, Answers, Community

Small business forums
Many small business owners are too busy for in-person networking. Attending conferences or local business groups isn’t always possible or convenient. That feedback is important, particularly when you are just starting out. You need a gathering place of kindred spirits so you can discuss, share ideas, get guidance, and even mentorship. These days, you don’t have to go it alone. Read more

5 Tips to Reduce Small Business Tax Stress

Tips to reduce small business tax stress
Wouldn’t you love to reduce small business tax stress? Every year at tax time you get that familiar knot in your stomach: tax butterflies, and, for some, out-and-out dread. For small business owners and freelancers, tax time can be a trial.

Tax stress often occurs for a few reasons. First, the small business owner may not have properly organized their business’s finances; secondly, the business owner has to find financial statements, receipts and other paperwork required by the account; and, finally, the small business owner may not understand their tax obligations.

Here are a five tips that will help reduce small business tax time stress. Read more

How to Manage Fluctuating Freelance Income

fluctuating freelance income
Freelancing is freedom, right? Yes, in many ways, the freelancing life does provide more flexibility compared to working at a 9-5 job. The challenge is an ever-changing income. A fluctuating freelance income is natural and can cause some frustration – if not panic!

Following is a non-nonsense guide to managing that up-and-down income. It will help you take care of your business, yourself, and your bank account. Read more

Small Business Loans You Might Not Know
– SBA 7(a) and SBA MicroLoan

Small business loan denied
Small business owners, particularly those just starting out, often finance their own businesses. According to the U.S. Census Bureau 2007 Survey of Business Owners, many business owners dig into their own pockets to fund their startup company and some 20% use no startup capital at all. There are many reasons new businesses self-finance and we can only guess what they are. It may be that they can’t afford the interest rates, loan terms are too short, they don’t have collateral to back a loan, or they simply don’t meet the tough standards of lenders. Read more

The Cost of Neglecting Small Business Financial Planning
– Removing Barriers to Success

Small business financial planning with Flare's budgeting tool

Given the demands on the time and financial resources of small business owners, often budgeting is an afterthought – if it’s done at all.

However, if you don’t budget or somehow monitor your business’s finances, you are putting your savings, hard work and sacrifices at risk. You are abdicating control and allowing fate to dictate outcomes like income, losses or even the continuation of your business. An apt analogy is driving in heavy traffic with your eyes closed and hoping against hope that you somehow avoid a collision. Read more