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CRM Guru, Family Filmmaker, and Host of the Business-First Creatives podcast. I help creative service providers grow and streamline their businesses using Dubsado.
Are you properly managing the numbers in your business and tracking your bookkeeping? In today’s episode, Crystalynn Shelton joins us to share how and why small business owners and entrepreneurs should be using Quickbooks. Listen in as she share five tips to getting started with Quickbooks!
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Crystalynn Shelton is a licensed CPA and QuickBooks Top 100 ProAdvisor helping startups, small businesses, and million-dollar companies alike take control of their finances through accounting software training and consulting.
Crystalynn’s number-crunching interest was sparked after taking a high-school bookkeeping course, and on completing the course, she was determined to become a CPA. For the last 20 years she has done just that, leading accounting departments for Fortune 500 companies like Intuit, Texaco and Paramount Pictures.
In 2010, Crystalynn went on to found her own consulting business. Since then, she has gone on to publish Mastering QuickBooks, a three-time Amazon Bestseller now in its fourth edition, coached more than 100 clients, all the while serving as an Adjunct Instructor at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) for the last 13 years teaching bookkeeping and QuickBooks courses.
Along with her fulfilling consulting business, Crystalynn enjoys trying new restaurants with her husband and watching her beloved Dallas Cowboys play.
Today’s episode is brought to you by my Client Hub Template inside the DIY Systems Template Shop. Business owners often have their client information spread across a variety of different tools, making it hard to access the information they need to make critical decisions. That’s why I built the Client Hub Template for Airtable, to take the guesswork out of building your own!
Here are the highlights…
[1:24] Get to Know Crystalynn
[3:17] Why Quickbooks?
[5:55] Quickbooks Plans vs. Self-Employed Quickbooks
[8:26] Tip 1: Separate Your Bank Accounts
[9:41] Tip 2: Start with an Accounting Software
[10:29] Tip 3: Use as Little Cash as Possible
[13:15] Tip 4: Go Paperless & Review Your Transactions on a Weekly Basis
[13:35] Tip 5: Connect Your Bank and Credit Card to Quickbooks
[16:35] Being Intentional About What You Connect to Your Quickbooks Account
[27:37] DIY Resources for Quickbooks
[31:02] Chart of Accounts
Mentioned in this Episode
Connect with Crystalynn Shelton
Review the Transcript:
Colie: Hello. Hello. And welcome back to the business first creatives podcast. Y’all I have made a new friend and she is a new friend who deals with money and that’s the best kind.
Crystal Lynn, welcome to the podcast. How are you this
Crystalynn: I am awesome. Thank you so much for having me.
Colie: I mean, Crystal Lynn, I told them that you deal in money. So why don’t you tell the listening audience who you are and what you do in order to set the stage for the conversation that we are about to
Crystalynn: Okay. Well, my name is Krystalyn Shelton. I am a certified public accountant and I’m also an advanced certified QuickBooks advisor. So I spend most of my days consulting with small business owners on how to manage their bookkeeping. So typically my clients are the do it yourselfers, people who Don’t have the funds to hire a bookkeeper or don’t want to hire a bookkeeper and they want to do the books themselves.
And so I usually am working with my clients virtually because I have clients, you know, all over or I’ll go to the office and train their like maybe the business owner or maybe their staff person who’s going to be managing the books. So spent a lot of time doing that. And then I also spend time writing.
So my fifth book is going to be published next week. It’s called Mastering QuickBooks 2024. And so I’m really excited about that.
Colie: I mean, so you write books about bookkeeping. There’s,
Crystalynn: I know hashtag
Crystalynn: It’s okay.
Colie: guys. Before we hit record, I was telling Krystalyn how much I love numbers. I think all of you guys know I love numbers, but I still pay bookkeepers to do my books. And as I was telling her before we hit record, I do that because doing my own books does not make me money.
And so all of that time that I would spend categorizing my expenses and my transactions, because I think y’all know I spend a lot of money. I mean, that’s just not time. that is generating revenue for my business. So first question, Krystalyn is, I know that we probably have a lot of people in the listening audience that aren’t quite ready to commit to bookkeepers and they would like to go more that DIY route.
So first of all, why do you recommend QuickBooks and do you recommend it for people who are just starting?
Crystalynn: Excellent question. So one of my favorite things about QuickBooks is I feel like it’s the perfect software for a non accountant. And so anyone, whether you have a accounting background or bookkeeping background, or whether you have no background in either one of those, you can learn how to use QuickBooks.
I’ve used quite a few accounting software products. You know, in my career, and it’s one of the few that you can actually figure out without understanding what debits and credits are. And so that’s really the main reason, one of the main reasons that I like it. Second, it’s been around over 20 plus years, so you can’t find a bookkeeper or a tax preparer or someone who hasn’t heard of QuickBooks.
And so, you always want to go with the software that’s very well known, because it’s going to be easier to find people who know how to use that software. And so, I would say, that’s the reason why I love QuickBooks. And then the other question was, do I recommend it? if you’re just starting out. So it really depends.
Um, many people start out using Excel spreadsheets. I think we talked about how much you love spreadsheets, Colie. So somebody else is a nerd too. Um, and so,
so it really depends. A lot of people started with an Excel spreadsheet, which I think is fine, but they make the mistake of waiting until things get, Two out of control before they decide.
Oh, you know what? I need an accounting software like yesterday So I think that it’s ideal to start out with QuickBooks because they have a They have like three plans that you can choose actually four plans that you can choose from and so you can just do the starter Plan I think it’s just best to start on a software so that you can implement a process and procedures You know, even if you don’t have a lot of activity That way as things ramp up and you start getting busy, you’ve already got the system down.
And so you won’t be scrambling trying to convert your spreadsheets over to accounting software and all that jazz. So to answer your question, yes, I don’t I never think it’s too early to start out using an accounting software.
Colie: Girl, that’s how I feel about systems. It is never too
early to put some
Colie: your business. All right, Crystal Lynn. So you mentioned that there are three and then you said four plans, but I want to say for the listening audience, because I made this mistake and I don’t want anyone else to do the same. Do you have an opinion on using self employed?
Crystalynn: I do. I’ll try to keep it clean though. No. No, self employed, QuickBooks. is great for people who are, I would say, cash based businesses, who aren’t going to grow for a number of years. But most of the small businesses that I deal with, self employed, they’re going to outgrow it too quickly. There’s a lot of limitations to that, version of the software, and it doesn’t easily upgrade.
To the plans that I’m referring to for a small business. So self employed, I would just say, you know, if you’re interested in using that one reach out to Someone like myself and let’s talk through what your business needs are to make sure It’s going to sustain you for a long period of time because the last thing you want to do is get on the software And in six months you outgrow it or even a year who wants to have to worry about upgrading their software You know after being in business for 12 months, so Tread lightly with the self employed.
Colie: Yes, I was on, I was on self employed for one year because I didn’t know any better. I loved it because it had the app and it had the mileage tracking, which now the other plans have mileage tracking. So that’s not a reason to choose between them. But when I got it, it was the first year that it had that and the other ones didn’t have
Colie: So of course I jumped like feet first into self employed, started using it in my business. And the first thing that I noticed was. I can’t create categories for my expenses. I was like, I don’t want to use the IRS categories. Those don’t make sense for my business. Like, I want to be able to say that this expense is related to my podcast.
And so, I mean, I realized the limitations within three months. But I was just stubborn. So I kept on using it for almost a year and then I finally converted into starter and now I’m what I’m on whatever that middle tier is. So guys, if you don’t take anything from this conversation, please do not be like, okay, well, Crystalynn and Nicole said that I should go get QuickBooks and I’m going to get the self employed version and go.
Please don’t do that.
Crystalynn: Exactly. Please don’t do that.
Colie: that QuickBooks is a good thing if someone wants to jump into their bookkeeping and get away from those Excel spreadsheets. But I know that you’ve got seven tips that you want to share with us today about getting control of your bookkeeping for this year, which when this airs, it’s going to be 2024.
So let’s dive into those tips. Where should we
Crystalynn: okay. So the first tip is Don’t commingle your personal and business funds I see this a lot and I will admit when I first started my business You know I had the money in one account my personal and my business because my business was a side hustle and So I was using part of my paycheck right to fund the expenses for my business So it didn’t make sense to have a separate Business account or so I thought at the time, but it’s really difficult when you have your personal and your business income in 1 account, and then you’re paying all the expenses for your household and for your business is 1 account.
It’s just too convoluted and you can’t figure out if you’re making money, you can’t determine how much money you’re spending on your business. So, my number one recommendation is to set up a separate business checking and savings account, okay? Even if you don’t have a lot of money coming in, right? And so, if you are funding it with your personal funds, Write yourself a check and deposit it in that business account to pay for what you need to, okay?
That’s the cleanest way to do it And to stay out of trouble with the IRS. Okay, so that’s tip number one
Colie: want that.
Crystalynn: My second tip is really what we’ve already been talking about which is Start with an accounting software You know, in the beginning and just go with the basics package, like for a quick book. So it’d be simple.
Start start there and, I would set aside some money to hire someone to set it up for you if you’re not comfortable with doing that. But if you’re a do it yourself, and you’re very tech savvy, you could probably set up QuickBooks on your own. The book that I just mentioned, that’s coming out next week.
Mastering QuickBooks 2024. Walks you through step by step how to set up your QuickBooks. How to record your sales, how to record your expenses. It walks you through the whole, gamut. And so, you can absolutely do it yourself. Another tip I would recommend is to use as little cash as possible. And so, the reason why I say that is because a lot of us have You know issues with keeping track of your receipts those paper receipts, right?
They drive me crazy Like I just can’t stand paper And so the problem with paying cash is if you lose a receipt you have no record that you made the purchase Whereas if you use your debit card or your credit card There’s always a record because you have a bank statement or you have a credit card statement that shows proof that you’ve, spent money for something.
And so I would just say use as little cash as possible. Um, my next thing, because it’s my pet peeve, is go paperless. Um, and so the nice thing about QuickBooks is you mentioned the app earlier, Colie. So you download that app on your iPad or on your phone. You can take a picture of receipts. It uploads to the software.
As you know, it attempts to categorize it for you. And then later on, you can go in and review those things and record them on your books. But once you take that snapshot, you can toss that paper. You don’t have to keep track of a whole bunch of receipts in this envelope or in your glove box and in your purse and all these different places that people stash receipts.
And so definitely I recommend to go paperless as soon as you can.
Colie: I feel like you’re talking to me. Are you talking to me? Like, are you like Colie? I know for a fact that you have a whole purse full of receipts. And every once in a while I toss them because I forget what they’re for. So I love making all of my business purchases online whenever possible. I mean, if I’m buying a new hard drive or if I’m buying a new, card for my camera, whatever it is.
I love buying from Best Buy and Amazon and all those things because I can always go find that receipt. Like when my bookkeepers asked me what 40 things were, I don’t know, let me go look at Amazon and tell you what it was. But the one thing that I’m really guilty of, and you know what, Chris, only now I’m going to hear you in the back of my mind.
Every time I eat out while I am on a business trip is I always forget to keep the meal receipts. And so at the end of the year, like sometimes I’m like feeling guilty about, you know, claiming my meals, even though there’s a paper trail as to, you know, I made it, but like, I can’t ever seem to keep track of the receipt.
So I really do need to do a better job of taking pictures in the moment because the app will allow me to do it. So thank you, Crystal. And that is what I have already gotten from this conversation. And I expect you to ask me in six months if I’m still doing it. Okay. To
Crystalynn: another tip is to, if you’re doing your own books, Typically, I recommend that you go in and review your transactions on a weekly basis, if at all possible. So one of the things, and sorry, I kind of jumped ahead of that. Let me back up and talk about another tip I should have talked about earlier, which is connect your bank and credit card accounts to QuickBooks.
Why? Because all of your Deposits and Withdrawals will automatically, import into the software and so instead of you sitting at a keyboard keying in all that information, it’s automatically imported and you’re literally just reviewing those things and categorize them as appropriate. So, like, was this office supplies or gas or a meal at a restaurant, like you just said, so if you connect all those things.
then you should only have to review them. And I would say weekly. I would say just put it on your calendar, set the time aside. Like I even have my calendar blocked for that bookkeeping time. And so for me, I make it fun. So I’ll either treat myself to my favorite latte. Some people say, Hey, I’ll have a glass of champagne, whatever floats your boat, okay?
But make it look,
Crystalynn: forward to, right? It’s your money time. Right.
Colie: everything. But guys, I do want to say, even if you’ve hired bookkeepers, it is not a completely hands off experience. Because sometimes they don’t know what the transaction was.
They can guess for some of them. But like often my Amazon, my Amazon purchases are like the number one thing that I feel like I have to justify to my bookkeepers every month. They’re like, was this an office expense? Was this a, I mean, and maybe I’m the only one that’s like reading that tone when they’re asking me.
But that’s not their purpose. They are not mind readers. Unless you are also providing your bookkeepers with the actual receipt so that they can go through and actually categorize it, you are going to get questions. And I will say that, you know, at the beginning, they asked me a lot of questions. And now it’s only like, you know, four or five a month, like, especially when I’m doing like business trips or something, and it’s a vendor that they don’t recognize.
And they’re like, okay, was this gas? Was this a meal while you were on a business expense? Those kinds of things. The other thing that I want to ask you, and I’m not sure if you’re going to talk about it, but I want to jump in here because one of the things that I do is setting up CRM software for small business owners, right?
Honeybook, those kinds of things. And so you said to connect your bank and your credit accounts. Are you gonna talk about how we get our sales into QuickBooks? Because I feel like this is where a lot of people make a mistake in that they connect everything and then they have duplicated sales.
Because if I connect my Dubsado account, which is where I actually collect the money, But people are being charged in Stripe. I should not connect Dubsado and Stripe because then all of those sales are coming in twice.
Crystalynn: No, that is an excellent point, Colie. Actually, I’ve had a client a few months ago who did this, who did exactly that. She connected Square, and then she had connected her bank, and so the sales were being duplicated because she was pulling them in from Square, and then she was pulling in those deposits, which were the deposits from the sales that she had made on Square.
And so, it’s really important. That you definitely connect your bank and credit cards without a doubt, but then when it comes to apps so third party apps, it’s important to Sit down and and understand what information you want to pull from those apps because You don’t need to pull everything and you can determine what information flows into QuickBooks And so I think it’s important if you’re not familiar with how the app works or how it integrates with QuickBooks, set up a demo with the third party, i.
e. Square or, what’s another one people use? Shopify, Stripe. Set up a demo. Those people are happy to demonstrate the product because they want you to use it. So they will show you how the integration works and you can ask them all of your questions. But that’s an excellent point. Don’t just start connecting everything all willy nilly because then you’re going to be in a world of trouble.
You’re going to
Colie: to be
Crystalynn: like me and you’re not going to be happy because you’re going to have to pay me to clean it up.
Colie: All right. So I want to give a quick recap because we’ve talked about a lot of tips and I want to make sure that none of them get lost before we move on to like the next part of the conversation. So here are the tips that she has shared thus far. Keep your money separate. Y’all don’t be putting the personal and the business in the same account. Make sure that when the IRS comes knocking that you can actually tell them which of your transactions were business because you have one place to send them to.
The second piece of advice that she gave you is as soon as possible. Go ahead and start with an accounting software. It is something that is going to grow with you. It is going to make your life easier and QuickBooks is the standard guys. There’s a lot of other options that you can look at, but when it comes to picking one that like plays nicely with almost everything, let’s just start with QuickBooks. third thing is don’t use cash. I mean, I don’t even keep cash anymore, but if you are someone who keeps cash, definitely don’t use it for your business expenses. The fourth thing that she said was go paperless, which guys, I really needed to hear that so that I can start taking pictures of my receipts.
My bookkeepers will be very happy with me. The fifth tip that she shared was connect your bank accounts and your credit cards so that everything related to those. Specific business transactions is coming into QuickBooks. So, you know what, crystal Lynn, I think I’m gonna ask you a question now because it’s a mistake that I’ve made and you’ll be able to voice how pe, what people should do if this happens.
Every once in a while my bookkeepers give me a note and ask me what something is and I’m like, I don’t recognize that. And I go look it up. And it was an accidental. personal purchase on one of my business accounts. And sometimes I’m like, I don’t even understand how that happened because like, where was the credit card that anyways, if I accidentally make a personal purchase, either using my business checking or using my business credit card, is it the end of the world?
What do I do?
Crystalynn: it’s not. And I’ve, I’ve done that as well. And so what we’ll typically do is have an account in QuickBooks called the OwnerDrawerOwnerPersonal. And so you just put it to that account. The key is not to categorize something as a business expense if it’s personal. So as long as you categorize it as a personal expense, you’re fine.
You’re fine. It’s just like there’s a difference between, you know, something happened every now and then and then every month the same thing It’s like, okay. Is this really an accident though? That’s right
Colie: Well, in one case it was actually happening every month because I had a Washington Post subscription and no matter how many times I tried to remember to put it on a different credit card, like, I don’t know how it got answered in the first place, so I really wasn’t trying to do anything nefarious. I just, like, it took them reminding me seven times, Colie, you really need to go change that credit card so that it can stop.
And, I mean, eventually, they just started automatically putting that transaction to my owner draw. And, I mean, it was only like 4 a month. I mean, it wasn’t really a big deal. But, again, keep it clean. We want the personal over here and the business over here.
Colie: Okay, the last tip that she shared with us, guys, is that you should be reviewing your transactions on a weekly basis.
Now, I will admit, When I was doing my own bookkeeping, I was not doing that. And I shared with Crystal Lynn that every year, two days before taxes were due, I would lock myself in my office for like 12 hour days, guys, so that I could categorize all of my expenses and get them where they needed to be.
Please don’t be me. I don’t know that I could still commit to doing it weekly. It sounds good, but like Crystal Lynn said, everybody needs to schedule this time on your calendar as like your CEO time. This is definitely one of your CEO tasks. Get in there, make sure that all of your expenses are categorized, because then at the end of the month when you’re doing reconciling and you’re looking at your profit and loss statement for the month, it is as accurate as possible.
Crystalynn: Yeah, and so let me just add to that that was an excellent recap Colie and so you mentioned something about Reconciling at the end of the month. So yeah, let’s be real You there’s gonna be times when you’re not gonna be able to look or categorize your items on a weekly basis So if you can’t do it weekly at a minimum do it monthly And, um, you want to schedule it after you’ve received all of your bank and credit card statements.
So typically for me, that’s like the second Saturday of the month is my, you know, like you said, CEO time
Colie: Your me time! Ha ha ha ha!
Crystalynn: I have my latte, I have my statements, I have, you know, and I can sit and sit there, categorize what hasn’t been categorized. Then I review my P& L for the previous month, because I want to see, you know, where I made money, how much money did I spend, what did I spend my money on.
It’s really important to be in tune to that, kind of thing. And you want to do it monthly because there are mistakes that can happen all the time. I mean, I don’t know if this has happened to you, Colie, but there’s been times, multiple times, where someone has gotten a hold of my, credit card number.
The card will be in my wallet, but my card’s been used at places that I never you know, was. And so I would contact my bank and as you probably know, this process is they automatically go ahead and give you the credit and then they do an investigation and then they find out, okay, yeah, you’re telling the truth, you know, and, and take care of it.
But you know, there’s a certain period of time where, that can pass and they won’t allow you to dispute any charges. And so that’s another reason why you really want to stay on top of, reviewing your transactions because it happens all the time. Fraud is a real thing. Yeah,
Colie: feel like the, I mean, I’m not going to tell y’all what my credit limit is, but it is really large on my business stuff. And so if you are someone who is not paying attention, I mean, if someone charged three or 400, I probably wouldn’t notice in the, in the grand scheme of things of all of the other things that I’m actually legitimately charging for my business.
So it is really important on a monthly basis that you just look at that statement and be like, Oh, okay. You know, at a glance. Okay. I did all those things, even if you haven’t categorized them yet, but categorizing your expenses is like that extra layer to make sure that there is no fraud, to make sure that, you know, the things that you are actually paying for as your business are the things that you truly charged.
Because I know Personally, when my credit card tends to get stolen is at the gas stations, which I’ve just started tapping now. Instead of swiping, I’m tapping. If you have, yeah, but like. I, I consciously have to think about that when I’m out of town for business and I have rented a car because if I’m going to get the gas, I want to make sure that in my mind, okay, no, I swiped my credit card for gas.
Like I need to just make sure that I’m checking it, you know, for the next week or whatever to make sure that no one has gotten ahold of my credit. Cause those people, those thieves are everywhere.
Crystalynn: are everywhere.
and the other tip that I would give and everybody can do this today is Most banks allow you to receive an alert over a certain dollar amount. So for all my bank accounts I have an alert that says any charges that are 100 or more. I want a text and an email And I get those alerts so that I can quickly look at my phone and say, Oh, yep, that was me.
And then if it’s something that wasn’t me or I don’t recognize, I contact my bank right away. and so I definitely recommend you do that as well. I mean, we work hard for our money, so you need to
Colie: We do.
Crystalynn: you know.
Colie: Mm hmm. I want to make sure that I’m keeping it. And I don’t know if this is specific to Bank of America, everyone, because I don’t have a business credit card with Bank of America. I do have a personal one, but I have that particular card set up to where it sends me an email. every time something is charged and it’s not my physical card.
So every time it’s used for like an auto charge online, or every time I’m buying something from like an online store, I get an email that says your credit card was used and it was not present. It gives me the name of the vendor and it gives me the amount of money. I mean, that’s just another way that I make sure personally.
Someone isn’t running off with my credit cards, especially the ones that I don’t use as often. Like I want to make sure that no one is racking up debt while I’m not paying
Crystalynn: exactly. Yeah, that’s exactly the alert that I have set up, except I do it for all transactions. And it’s, I have Bank of America as well, so, yep.
Colie: hmm. Nice. All right. So I feel like those tips that you gave us are all amazing, but I know that some people are probably still just a little apprehensive about leaving their spreadsheets or whatever system they have. Cause I’m going to admit, I know a lot of people that don’t even have spreadsheets. I, it hurts my heart to admit that, but you know, I, I don’t know what they’re doing for their bookkeeping.
I legitimately don’t want to know, but if they are listening to our conversation and they’re like, you know what? I think I want to give QuickBooks a chance. As you’ve already said, Simple Start is where everybody should go. And I mean, a majority of the time you can get an initial discount on your first year, especially if you’re getting it through a bookkeeper, a CPA, someone who has that offer.
But one thing that I wanted to ask you is, How hard is it to learn QuickBooks and where is it that we can go for like resources in order to set it up ourselves or at least attempt to set it up ourselves if we want to go the DIY
Crystalynn: Yeah, great question. So first of all, I think QuickBooks is extremely easy to learn how to use, but the key is that you have the right resources so it teaches you the proper way to use it. I have tons of clients who have purchased it. Gone in there, figured things out on their own, and I admire that, but it’s not the best way to go about it.
So, I mentioned my book, Mastering QuickBooks 2024. That is
Colie: And we will have a link in the
Crystalynn: That is the budget friendly way to go, right? The books probably 2930 bucks on Amazon and it teaches you step by step how to set your books up and really how to record those basic transactions in QuickBooks. That’s like the first resource. The second resource that I have is a self paced course.
It’s called QuickBooks Bootcamp Basic Training, and you can get that on my website. It’s www. quitslonshelton. com, backslash podcasts for your audience. And so, that course is me teaching you how to set up QuickBooks and use it properly. So you literally can pause the video and do what I show you and play it.
And so it’s, it’s really nice for people who are visual and don’t necessarily want to pick up a book to do it, but they’re like, Oh, this one’s going to teach me. Yeah. That’s what I want. My personal. QuickBooks trainer. So that’s what the course is. So those are the, really the two main resources that, that I recommend.
The other thing I was going to say is there’s a test drive. Like if you’re like, Oh, I’m just curious how QuickBooks works. You know, I don’t know if, you know, what, what is the platform like? What does it look like? You can actually Google. QuickBooks online test drive, and you don’t even have to provide any information.
It’s just a confirmation that you’re not a robot, and then it lets you into a sample QuickBooks file that you can sort of click around and just check it out if you’re just curious about it. Then that’s a good resource as well. But all new clients, I meet with them for 30 minutes. Complimentary consultation to talk to them about their business and what they need so that we can sort of figure out what the best plan is for them.
So I absolutely have that available as well.
Colie: Yeah, and I think that’s a, that’s a great way to figure out if you are ready for bookkeeping because Like the thing is, it’s hard for people to give you a standard like, Oh, when you’re making 50, 000, that’s when you need bookkeeper or when you have like 20 sales a month, that it’s not that cut and dry.
Like, sometimes you just need to sit down with someone and tell them all about your business and be like, okay, so am I ready for bookkeeping? Like, and the answer is usually probably going to be yes, like every day of the week and twice on Sunday, but the level, the level of bookkeeping that you need can be very different.
Crystalynn: absolutely. Yeah, I totally agree. Mm hmm.
Colie: All right. So I think before we end this conversation, I do want to ask you, just cause I’m curious, cause I know that I see like the same mistakes when I’m setting up people’s CRMs over and over again, is there anything that you think that people do wrong when they’re trying to DIY their QuickBooks that you could like put up a red flag and be like, please don’t do this.
Crystalynn: I would say a common mistake that I see is, , a lot of people aren’t familiar with the chart of accounts, especially if you’re not an accountant. And so what I see a lot is people who aren’t accountants will set up their vendors. In the chart of accounts list. So, for example, the chart of accounts is for those who aren’t familiar with that term.
It’s just, categories that that are set up so that you can keep track of all of your business income and expenses. So, for example, office supplies is a account category and so basically in QuickBooks with the chart of accounts, you want to keep that account information generic, right? So you don’t want to put like Office Depot or Target, right?
I’ve seen that. You don’t want to put that in your chart of accounts because whatever shows up on your chart of accounts will show up on that financial statement. You don’t want to see target or office supplies on your PNL that goes on another report called vendor expenses. Right? And so I would just say the chart of accounts needs to be generic.
So that way, whether you purchase office supplies from target. Or, Office Depot, all of those purchases go to one account called Office Supplies, which appears on your P& L, okay? Yeah, so that’s, that’s a real common one, I think, and it’s just because no one’s explained to them what that purpose of that chart of accounts is, basically.
Colie: No, I love that. And now you’ve given me the
proper term. So earlier in this conversation, when I was talking about the fact that self employed QuickBooks won’t let you create your expense, that’s what I was actually talking about was your chart of counts. I personally, in my business, want to see what kind of expenses are directly attributable to this
podcast. Separate from what’s attributable to like my revenue generating activities like client work and my course sales and all of those things. And I will just add, you said to make sure that you’re not naming your vendors in your chart of accounts. I would also say. Don’t go crazy and make a chart of account, label for like every single thing that you can think of, because when it comes to doing your taxes, the IRS already has these, these chart of account labels, and then you can always put, you know, custom ones on your, on your pages and all that, but like, you don’t want there to be four pages for your chart of accounts, listing every single thing.
So, I’m I mean, the best thing that I’ve ever done is making sure that I understand what is going into each of those because like advertising expenses, I think that’s the one that I always have the hardest time with because like, you can or cannot put your website expenses into that category, depending on how you think about it.
So again, guys, Chart of accounts is a very dense subject and I feel like if I hadn’t actually spoken to professionals at some point, I would have ended up with a chart of accounts. That was 4 pages long because I would have wanted to know where every little bit of my money is going. And perhaps the scariest 1 is educational expenses.
That’s the 1. There’s so much in there, Crystal Lynn, like
we, you know what, we all need to talk about that. We’re going to end this podcast episode on a good note. So you have already mentioned that everyone will be able to find out more information about you by going to crystallynnshelton. com slash podcast.
But where can they find you if you are active on your social media accounts?
Crystalynn: So on social media, I am at Crystalline Shelton so it’s C R Y S T A L Y N N S H E L T O N So that’s all the platforms. LinkedIn, Facebook, IG, and then Twitter, it’s at Crystalline Pens, P E N S.
Colie: Okay. Well, everyone, I hope that this conversation has made you feel like in case you weren’t already on top of your bookkeeping and you didn’t have a plan, like now you can move forward in 2024 with some amazing bookkeeping so that in December. When you’re trying to close out your books for the year, you won’t be a anxious puddle on the floor. Crystal Lynn, Thank you so much for joining me in this conversation. It was
Crystalynn: Thanks so much, Colie. I had so much fun. Thanks again.
Colie: All right, everyone. That’s it for this episode. See you next time.