How to start a bookkeeping business

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Many bookkeepers find work with a single organization while others work as freelance bookkeepers for a handful of clients. The high level of skill required for this career has also paved the way for healthy wages that can vary depending on the type of bookkeeping position you accept.

Here's what you need to know about starting a bookkeeping business:

What does a bookkeeping business do?

A bookkeeper business typically works with either a small business, or accountant clients to make sure that the end client's income and expense records are organized, and accounted for. This helps the client with tax filings, and to understand their business operations, so they can make good decisions on how to grow and change their company.

How much money does a bookkeepers business make? Is bookkeeping profitable?

Freelance bookkeepers earn $20 to $40 on average, with some charging $75 per hour, and others report earning $150 and more per hour. On a full-time schedule of 2,000 hours per year, that means top bookkeeper businesses can bring in $300,000 per year.

How do I learn bookkeeping from home to start a business?

We already mentioned how you may not need a college degree to find work as a bookkeeper. Typically, you only need experience in accounting to find entry-level work. Many employers are also willing to hire inexperienced bookkeepers provided they have the basic math and software skills.

However, thousands of moms have gone through Bookkeeper Launch, an online video course and community to learn everything you need to know to successfully launch a bookkeeper business, including both the hard skills, selling and marketing, as well as mindset blocks that can hold you back from launching and growing into the 6-figure, at-home career that many moms dream of.

Bookkeeper Launch issues a certificate of completion, which is both helpful in marketing your new business, as well as giving you the confidence to seek out and book clients. This post details learning to become a bookkeeper.

Is it hard to start a bookkeeping business?

The process laid out by Bookkeeper Launch is simple:

  1. Decide you want to own your own bookkeeper business.
  2. Learn the basics of bookkeeping in 90 days.
  3. Set up a website with basic marketing materials (Bookkeeper Launch shows you how, step-by-step).
  4. Start networking in your community. Afraid? Imposter syndrome? The course helps you work through these very normal fears. Successful clients report that the Bookkeeper Launch closed Facebook community is especially helpful in inspiring new bookkeepers to launch and think big — as well as provide tactical and emotional support as you start and grow.
  5. Celebrate! You did it!

Start a work-from home bookkeeping business with this free training >>

To market yourself to potential clients, it is important to have attractive social media accounts, as well as a simple website that showcases who you are, and what you offer.

Find a domain name now for your new bookkeeper business, before someone else grabs it!

Here is a detailed list of legal, financial and technological tools you will need to incorporate, insure and scale your bookkeeper business.

Check here to see if anyone owns your website name now!

Before you launch your bookkeeping business, make sure no one steals your biz name! BlueHost costs just $3.95/month to host a website, which includes a FREE domain name for 1 year, 24/7 support, quick install and 30-day money-back guarantee!

What is Bookkeeper Launch?

Bookkeeper Launch is an online course launched by Ben Robinson, a certified public accountant, and owner of his own CPA firm.

His website says that he has helped more than 4,000 people start their own bookkeeping business since 2001. The current course includes video lessons (with closed caption, audio and downloadable transcripts), worksheets, templates, quizzes, interviews, role-play scenarios, case studies, and checklists — and a dynamic closed Facebook community only for Bookkeeper Launch clients.

In short, this is the most popular and powerful course with tips for starting a bookkeeping business.

Listen to Houston single mom Toni Reid talk about how she launched a bookkeeper business with no experience, and a very small budget, and now enjoys full flexibility, a high income and time with her kid:

Here is what is inside Bookkeeper Launch:

Section 1 – 21st Century Bookkeeping Skills

  • How to clearly understand the role of a bookkeeper for businesses today
  • How to create beautiful financial reports that will blow clients' minds (compared to the ugly spreadsheets delivered by most of your competitors)
  • Everything you need to know about:
    • balance sheets
    • income statements
    • statements of cash flows
  • Ben's proven system of “clean up” the books of even the messiest, most chaotic client (and how to brace yourself for clients' ecstatic reactions)
  • How to give your client hope for a better financial future
  • How to stay up-to-date on new bookkeeping technology and rules

Section 2 – How to get bookkeeping clients?

  • The difference between busy vs breakthrough work — and how to use this lesson to make the big bucks
  • Identify your ideal target market
  • Craft sales copy and networking language that connects with your ideal target client
  • How to get inside prospective clients minds to understand what they're REALLY looking for
  • The #1 mistake people make with their business card (this costs them lots of clients)
  • Word-for-word scripts to use at a networking events, conferences, on sales calls to build trust, get people to like you, and help you feel professional and confident!
  • The secrets to coming across as confident in a professional setting (even if you feel terrified inside)
  • Where to find high-quality clients
  • How to price your services

Section 3 – Systems to Grow Your Bookkeeper Business

  • Quick launch system to launch your business in less than one week — including a checklist to give you the confidence that you have covered everything before you open for business, including:
    • Tax setup
    • A list of licenses and permits required — and how and where to get them
    • Tips on how to set up bank and merchant accounts to avoid mistakes that cost you money and headache
  • How to onboard a client safely and smoothly
  • “The Breakthrough Framework” for getting more done (in less time)
  • Bookkeeper lifestyle hacks to help you get more done in less time, and make more money so you can enjoy your new life.

Section 4 – Find and Grow Clients

  • How to send proposals that prospective clients buy
  • How to quickly setup a website by yourself
  • Ben's simple follow-up system to make sure no interested prospect ever gets by
  • How to build a bookkeeper business on referrals
  • How to find clients online — including on LinkedIn without being a creep or getting banned by social media platforms.

Bookkeeper Launch Resource Library

You also get access to the extensive Bookkeeper Launch “Resource Library”, which includes guides, templates and worksheets you need to start your successful bookkeeping business:

  • A detailed workbook to help you work through all of your bookkeeping practicals.
  • Tested and proven templates for Proposals, Engagement Letters and other key marketing materials so you can be confident in your sales process
  • Results-Oriented Checklists for your key systems to make sure you don't miss any important details
  • Interviews with successful students on how they overcame key challenges in their journey so you don't have to run into the same pitfalls
  • Study hacks to show you the most effective learning methods so you can acquire your new bookkeeping skills as quickly as possible
  • All material library materials are based on what's working NOW for the most active and successful bookkeeper
  • Special software and tool recommendations for a virtual bookkeeping business, so you can be efficient and maximize your free time
  • Quizzes, tests and final exams so you've proven that you know what you're talking about

The Bookkeeper Launch Action Guide

This 41-point guide outlines the exact steps required to reach success.

Bookkeeper Launch certificate of completion

While there is no actual bookkeeping certification required to run a bookkeeping business, Bookkeeper Launch does issue a certificate of completion, which is both helpful in marketing your new business, as well as giving you the confidence to seek out and book clients.

Also, QuickBooks Online and Xero both offer free certifications. These are not necessary to operate as a bookkeeper, but can be helpful in building your skills, and mentioning in your marketing to potential clients.

Bookkeeper Launch Premiere Private Coaching Group

For a premium fee, the Premiere membership level includes a private coaching group where you will receive a high-touch network of fellow bookkeeping students, as well as coaching from instructors.

Scholarships for single moms

Who is Bookkeeper Launch for?

The typical Bookkeeper Launch client is drawn to these benefits of owning a bookkeeping business:

  • You want to boost your income (the average Bookkeeper Launch client reports earning $60 per hour).
  • You want to work part-time and/or remotely from home — or anywhere in the world!
  • You would enjoy helping other businesses and entrepreneurs grow and thrive
  • You don’t need a fancy degree to get started
  • You don't need a lot of money or time to invest in launching a new business.

How much does Bookkeeper Launch cost?

Bookkeeper Launch Pro costs $2,499 (one-time payment).

The Pro program also has a payment plan of 12 payments of $249

Pay in full, and save $500 on the pro plan.

Bookkeeper Launch Premiere costs $2,999 (one-time payment).

Premiere includes everything in Pro, plus:

  • 8 LIVE group coaching sessions giving you more preparation and accountability in a small class setting
  • Led by course creator Ben Robison
  • Unlimited open mic sessions

The Premiere program also has a payment plan of 12 payments of $299.

Pay in full, and save $589 on the premiere plan.

Ben Robinson, the founder (who you will meet in all the sales and course videos, and is immensely likable) is so confident that this course works, that he offers a 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee.

“If you aren’t completely satisfied with the program (for any reason whatsoever) you can request a full refund within the 30-day refund period.”

Ben Robinson, Bookkeeper Launch founder

Check out Bookkeeper Launch now >>

Bookkeeper Launch Team costs $4,999 (one-time payment)

For those who already have a bookkeeper business and are ready to scale up. Bookkeeper Launch Team costs $499 monthly (for 12 monthly payments so long as the student continues to pay). Or save $989 when you pay in full.

Team includes:

  • Everything in Pro and Premiere, plus:
  • In-bound marketing and sales processes
  • Access to a community of elite bookkeepers to share ideas and strategies
  • 2 Knowledge Licenses for your team members (Bookkeeper Launch Skills)

Bookkeeper Launch offers a 30% military discount for active-duty members, retired service members, and spouses. To prove their eligibility, the individual must supply a copy of their orders (active) or DD214 (retired). 

Check out Bookkeeper Launch now >>

Here are some sneak peaks into the inside of Bookkeeper Launch:

how to start bookkeeper business
what is bookkeeper business launch
what kind of buiness needs bookkeepers
where find bookkeeper gigs

The bottom line: How do I get started in bookkeeping?

Don't have any of these skills? Good news is that you can easily learn, no matter your formal education. Moms with no college degree, no accounting skills have built successful, six-figure bookkeeping businesses.

While traditional, full-time bookkeeping jobs may not be as plentiful as they once were, the recent rise in online entrepreneurship has made it so many more individual business owners are seeking bookkeepers to help them manage their finances.

Check out Bookkeeper Launch now to learn more about bookkeeping as a career.

Bookkeeping not a fit? Find more business ideas for moms

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How to become a proofreader and work from anywhere

Top at-home career-level jobs for moms

What does a bookkeeping business do?

A bookkeeper business typically works with either a small business, or accountant clients to make sure that the end client's income and expense records are organized, and accounted for. This helps the client with tax filings and more.

Is bookkeeping profitable?

Freelance bookkeepers earn $20 to $40 on average, with some charging $75 per hour, and others report earning $150 and more per hour. On a full-time schedule of 2,000 hours per year, that means top bookkeeper businesses can bring in $300,000 per year.

Wealthysinglemommy.com founder Emma Johnson is an award-winning business journalist, activist, author and expert. A former Associated Press reporter and MSN Money columnist, Emma has appeared on CNBC, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, NPR, TIME, The Doctors, Elle, O, The Oprah Magazine. Winner of Parents magazine’s “Best of the Web” and a New York Observer “Most Eligible New Yorker," her #1 bestseller, The Kickass Single Mom (Penguin), was a New York Post Must Read. As an expert on divorce and gender, Emma presented at the United Nations Summit for Gender Equality and multiple state legislature hearings. More about Emma's credentials.

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