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Buying a businessStarting a business from scratch is not that easy. You need to deal with building your customer base, marketing your new business , hiring your staff, establishing your cash flow the list goes on. There are endless tasks and high risks, not to mention the time you need to wait for your investment and hard work to pay off…

...which is the total opposite of buying an existing business.

Purchasing a business for sale is easier, faster and less risky than starting from scratch. When you buy a business, you simply take over and continue its operation. As long as you are making a wise purchase decision, it should already have an established brand, customer base, and cash flow.

But before you get excited with the benefits of acquiring an existing business, you need to know where to start, what to do, and be aware of the whole process. You need to be warned that the whole process can be exhausting and heart-wrenching.  Read more…

Buying a business, big or small, is one of the biggest decisions and financial transactions you might ever make. It is not as simple as buying a product or service. There are many things to consider, processes and procedures to undertake, and different financial and legal requirements to think about. So, whether you are a businessman or a budding entrepreneur, you need a comprehensive guide to follow to ensure a successful transaction.

With many years in the industry, we, at Paul Martin Chartered Accountant Limited, have encountered many different clients aspiring to engage in the buying and selling of businesses. As trusted business advisors and chartered accountants in Auckland, we have helped them with what they need to know every step of the way - from due diligence right through to successful business turnover.

As many people don't know where to start when first looking at a business purchase option, we are launching a blog series covering a range of things you need to know about buying a business. Read more…

One of the major reasons why businesses fail is because they fail to plan. Business planning is the most critical part of running a business. It is not enough that you want to have or have started a business. And it is not enough that you have sufficient funds to sustain it. You should have every detail well mapped out if you don't want your efforts to go to waste. And your business plan should include goals. These goals will help you to not only maintain your current position, but also to achieve further growth.

If you don't have business goals right now, here are more reasons that you should consider creating some as soon as possible: Read more…

Financial MistakesCash is the lifeblood of a business. No business owner wants to see their business struggling because of lack of funds or in debt due to mismanaged finances. What they want to see is a regular flow of profit but this is easier said than done.

With many years of experience as chartered accountants and business experts, we've seen many financial mistakes that business owners make. Here are some of the most common mistakes and how to avoid them: 

Not having a business plan including clear financial goals

Business planning is very important. If you want to be successful in your business, you need a roadmap. It is also important to set clear goals and targets. In particular, you need to have financial goals that will help you measure how well your business is doing. Furthermore, your financial goal should be clear and realistic. Goals should be phased - weekly, monthly, quarterly or yearly. You also need to involve your whole organisation in your business strategy. Give your team goals to aim for.  Read more…

Accounting software

Cloud accounting is a revolutionary way to efficiently manage your business, and even personal, financial transactions. It is a great tool to keep your books accurate and up to date. But how do you choose the best cloud accounting software for your business? With the many cloud accounting products out there, it can be challenging to decide which is the best tool to assist your business financial management.

So whether you are a small or medium enterprise, or a big business, or a professional, here are some questions that you need to consider when finding the best cloud accounting software for you.  Read more…

Cloud Accounting

If you are looking for an efficient and more effective way of managing and tracking your business financial transactions, you may want to consider putting your financial data in the cloud or using a cloud accounting system.

The cloud is basically a term used to refer to the internet. And cloud accounting is an efficient method of managing your business online. Instead of storing your data on your local computer, you store it in the cloud so you can access it anytime and anywhere you are in the world. You simply login to software found in any search engine site or to your local computer software.

Cloud accounting is a revolutionary tool that can help businesses, especially startups and small to medium enterprises, grow and realize their full potential.

But it is not always easy to change to something new, especially if it could greatly affect the future of your business. So here are some benefits of cloud accounting that you need to consider if you want your business to be successful.  Read more…

Happy Customers - Good Business RelationshipBusiness owners would agree that a referred customer is far better than the one brought in by paid advertising. And yet many businesses are spending more to get new customers than acquiring referrals from their loyal and happy customers. Actually, good business relationships play a vital role in retaining customers and acquiring new ones.

Though sales are one of the most important metrics to monitor your business growth, it is just a number. There is more to it than seeing the numbers go up and down. Sometimes high sales don't mean happy customers. If they have a bad experience dealing with your company, do you think they would still patronise your products or services? You would need to offer them something really great in return.

Read more…

Role of a Chartered AccountantMany people don't understand the roles of accountants versus bookkeepers versus Chartered Accountants as some of their daily tasks overlap. However, there are distinct differences that you need to consider when choosing your professional advisor.

Bookkeepers can call themselves accountants but this does not necessarily mean they are Chartered Accountants (or Certified Public Accountants in some countries). Bookkeepers are responsible for tracking and recording of business transactions. They are often called accounting clerks. Their main responsibility is to keep daily financial records accurate, complete and up to date. Being a bookkeeper only requires basic qualifications such as technical knowledge in bookkeeping, relevant bookkeeping experience and basic accounting skills.

On the other hand, accountants that are members of the Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand (CAANZ) (or similar professional bodies offshore) need a higher level of tertiary education to be qualified. They usually have at least seven years of education and must undertake ongoing annual professional development to maintain their qualifications. Some accountants are not Chartered Accountants which means they do not need to undertake any particular ongoing professional development or meet certain minimum standards to remain up to date with the latest tax and business trends.  Read more…

Business PlanningA few decades back, it was a challenge for business owners to maximise their exposure and reach their target markets. These days, much has changed. With vast amounts of information and technology readily available almost anything is possible. Business owners can now reach their audience anywhere, anytime. The resources are there, you just need to choose the right strategies for your business. However, sometimes when your business is growing you have  less time to look at your business at a deeper level. Missing out on these essential business insights or becoming complacent with your existing business strategies can lead to problems. Before this happens, go over your business strategies and do some tidying up.

What are things that could happen to your business strategy that would require you to dust it off? Here are a few:

Read more…

Online Branding for Small Businesses

Online Branding
Online branding is important for businesses to stay ahead. Building a brand online is a marketing challenge that every business owner encounters.

Here are some tips for a successful online branding:

1. Identify the right audience for your business. Create marketing personas and search for the perfect social media communities that you believe would resonate with your target market. The concept of one-size-fits-all does not apply when it comes to online branding. In some way or another, you have to be specific to attract the right audience and build your own community of followers. Knowing what really matters to your target market is a vital factor to a successful business. With today's advanced technology, almost anything is possible. Reach out to your target market by conveying the right message at the right time and in the right place.

2. Get found online. It is not enough that you have a website with your brand name and a logo. Building your brand online is so much more. You need more than just a profile on social media communities. The first thing to do is to develop your message so you can convey it effectively to you audience. What is your brand? How would you like your brand name to be remembered? These are only some of the things you should consider. Once you are ready to immerse your brand online, don't just talk - shout it out loud to the world! Be bold and brave but also know your limits. You do not want to compromise your reputation when doing your online branding. It is a long process and does not happen overnight. Choose the right medium to convey your message. There are lots of digital marketing methods which you can use such as search engine optimisation, social media marketing, content marketing, email marketing and affiliate marketing.  Read more…

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