I cannot wait for you to join me in my Mini-Course to prepare you for tax season.
When I started as a Virtual Assistant and heck I can even go further back as to when I started blogging the first thing I noticed was since it was all online I had collected A LOT of electronic documents. Between ebooks, PDFs, photographs, headers, images, blog buttons, information from sponsors, documents and spreadsheets from clients, contracts, etc, etc, etc.
Soon my hard drive was getting VERY FULL. I had files EVERYWHERE! I started asking people what they do with all this stuff and they said they save everything in THE CLOUD! So what is “the cloud?” The cloud is just a web based program where you can save things.
The awesome thing about the cloud is you have several options. You can use multiple different services. And the best part is almost all of the have a free version. I have most of my stuff saved in multiple different programs so I currently don’t have to pay. The services I currently use are Dropbox, Google Drive (probably my fav because you get the most space), and ShoeBox (pictures only).
Dropbox is the first program I ever used. I started using it probably when it was very new in 2010ish. At the time I had a computer in my room and my mom had a computer in the living room I sometimes would use when I was watching TV and it was really cool to be able to save documents I was working on in dropbox and just open it on a different computer without having to save it to a flash drive.
When you read that it sounds like such a first world problem but it was seriously the coolest thing ever! And I was in the same house! Then my mom and I started saving work documents and opening them at work and that was super cool for us! Now I use it to auto sync my budget, YNAB (You Need A Budget) from my mobile device to my computer. I can also easily save my photos from my iPhone using the app to my computer.
The main cloud based program I use right now is Google Drive (formerly Google Docs). The #1 thing I like about Google Drive is it’s connected to your gmail. So if you have a gmail account you have Google Drive. They give you 15GB of storage free. Dropbox only gives you about 5ish. And if you need more than 15GB for $1.99 a month you can get 100GB. This is VERY affordable in my opinion compared to other programs. Other programs if you want extra storage it is usually $99 a year a or $9.99 a month.
The great thing about Google Drive is you can create the equivalent of a word document, spreadsheets, and powerpoints all online. You don’t even have to save it..it saves automatically. You can easily share these documents with other people so they can just view them or they can view and edit. Many of my clients will share instructions, spreadsheets of stats they want me to track, or other tasks via google drive documents with me directly and I go in and view it online. Sometimes we both need access at the same time and it’s not a big deal. I really like using google drive documents I rarely ever have to worry about losing files anymore unless I lose my internet connection and even then it’s not really an issue.
The last cloud storage I recently learned about is the ShoeBoxApp. It’s just for storing your photos and videos (although if you want videos you have to pay extra). The great thing about this one is it’s TOTALLY free for photos there is no limit on the amount of photos you have. Right now I have over 20,000 photos in it. I know this isn’t really online business related but we all take SO MANY photos it tends to clog up our hard drives so this is a good way to get them off our computers.
What other cloud storage do you use? Do you have any other tips on using the cloud? Let me know in the comments!
Social Media can be fun when we are using it for personal use but when we are using it to grow our business it’s a TOTALLY different ballgame.
In our personal lives we tweet and gram and facebook pictures or our thoughts and what happens to the content happens. We don’t care if we get a million comments (okay we kind of do)…but our life or business doesn’t depend on it.
The hardest thing for most online business owners is Marketing. Most of us have never taken a marketing class in our lives. And if you add Online Marketing to that it’s a totally different ballgame. Most of us understand hey we need to get a facebook page, twitter, instagram, pinterest, etc. But other than that we don’t know what to do.
There are so many different opinions on how many times a day we should post, what we should post, what time we should post…the list goes on FOREVER and EVER. Trust me I have driven myself crazy reading about this stuff.
The one thing I do read over and over again that is the same is you need to be CONSISTENT. If you are going to post on facebook 3 times a day post 3 times a day everyday. If you are going to blog on Mondays and Thursdays that is fine just do it. If you are going to tweet 5 times a day do it on a consistent basis. And if something happens that you know it might end let your audience know – example: you have a baby, you go out of the country, you are having renovations done, your moving, your going to a conference, etc.
One of the best social media tools I have used over the years is called BUFFER. When it first came out I didn’t understand it at all. I couldn’t see anything in my twitter timeline. And that is the point of this app.
All this app is for you to schedule tweets (you can use it for other sm but I haven’t). Then you tell the app what time you want your tweets to go out. 1:02pm, 5:30pm, 6:00am, etc.
It’ll even give you a few examples of times it thinks you should tweet based on your timeline. You write the tweets click “add to my buffer” and the tweets go out automatically at the right times. Buffer will also analyze your tweets and let you Retweet them again later on and you can also tweet at the current time or a scheduled time. And you can tweet the same thing to multiple twitters (not sure I’d recommend that but it’s an option).
One of the best tools for using BUFFER is getting the browser extension app. It allows you to tweet a photo with a link or just a link for whatever website you are on. If you have the pro version of feedly you can set it to automatically add certain feeds to buffer as well. So many good tools!! I love it!!
Do you use buffer to schedule tweets? If you use something else what do you use? Let me know in the comments I’d love to chat about it!
Well here we are Day 1 of the 31 Days of Blogging Challenge! I am so excited that October is FINALLY HERE!! I feel like we have been talking and preparing for it since July. I have been thinking about this series for awhile and looking forward to the next month as I share my tips about organizing your online business.
As a Virtual Assistant I love to tell people that “I organize the boring parts of the business so my clients can do the creative things they love to do.”
As creatives organization isn’t always your strong suit. Even I have my struggles. (You DO NOT want to see my desk right now). No matter what kind of online business or blog you have you need to have some kind of organizational system in place.
When you first start off you may not have a lot to handle but eventually you will. And it’s good to start a good organization system when you are small in trying to figure out how to handle everything.
I know so many entrepreneurs who say they’ll just learn to be organized later but later never comes. One of the main reasons you need to be organized from the beginning is come January for that lovely thing most people hate called TAXES!! If you are unorganized you won’t have any copies of receipts you may need. Income.
Heck if you are really unorganized you may not even know if everyone paid you! That is a BIG DEAL! You need to make sure you are getting paid for the work you do. I have heard many horror stories of these types of situations.
If you don’t keep good records of your receipts you won’t be able to deduct a lot of things from your taxes. This is a big deal you want to take as many deductions as possible. The more you deduct the less you will end up paying in taxes. It’s really a win-win all around.
So if you have trouble organizing your online business and want tips, apps, and courses to help you organize your business or learn things a Virtual Assistant can help you with make sure to continue following me for the month of October!
Welcome to my website! I am glad you are here. I hope you find the information I will provide on this website helpful to you and your business. For the past 3 years I have tirelessly seen bloggers and online business owners freak out about money and taxes and tracking it all. At the time I was either unemployed, a lowly tiny blogger, or in school for accounting. While I was in school I was determined to figure out a way to help bloggers with the financial side of things when I finished school and here I am! I saw a need and went with it!
I am here to help you with all your bookkeeping needs along with many other services including organizational tips and administrative tasks for the behind the scenes of your business.
When it comes to financials organization is the first step. If you can’t find your receipts we will get into trouble come tax time when it is time to report our income to the IRS. I hope to start posting some great ideas to help you stay organized along with other tips that I come across. If you have any ideas or suggestions you would like me to post about please let me know in the comments or email me at bethannethebookkeeper at gmail dot com.