April 9, 2020
Finding an eCommerce accountant who understands Amazon & Shopify

Finding an eCommerce accountant who understands Amazon & Shopify

Hi, I’m Veronica Wasek with
Five Minute Bookkeeping. And today, I am talking to online sellers, and talking to you about
how you find an accountant who specializes in Amazon and Shopify. (bright music) One of the biggest complaints that I hear from people that I talk
to who are selling online is that they can’t find a
bookkeeper or accountant who understands eCommerce, or maybe they don’t
understand Amazon or Shopify. So I’m going to give
you a list of some tips and things that you should
consider and specific questions that you should be asking when you’re interviewing
accountants or bookkeepers. So let’s go ahead and get started. The first thing that you want to ask about is their eCommerce
knowledge or experience. I can tell you, at
least from my experience and with my own accounting firm, since we have changed our focus to working with eCommerce sellers, we have had to do a lot of
learning, a lot of training, finding resources that
help us to understand how to do the accounting, how to understand how Amazon
works, how Shopify works. We’ve done a lot of testing. So for firms like mine that are
now specialized in eCommerce there’s a big learning curve. You do want to ask if they
have experience with Shopify, with Amazon, with Etsy or
whatever other sales channel that you’re selling on. And then ask them what
are some of the challenges that your clients are experiencing in using these different sales channels? The challenges that you normally have is that you have a lot
of transactions going on in a particular sales channel. And what you normally see
coming over into QuickBooks and coming over from the bank feed is actually the net amounts
from the payment processors. And so, there’s really no correlation between what’s actually
happening in your sales channel, whether it’s sales, refunds,
sales taxes collected and gift cards, anything
else that goes on. There’s no correlation between that and what we’re actually seeing
deposited into QuickBooks. So all of those numbers
have to be broken up and then recorded so that you can actually see your gross sales, refunds
and other components of sales and then those amounts have to
be reconciled to the amounts that are being received from
PayPal, from Shopify payments, Amazon payments, et cetera. Next is inventory. Inventory can get quite tricky, especially if you’re selling
on multiple channels. So you do want to then ask that accountant what do you know about tracking
inventory in QuickBooks? What’s your opinion about
tracking inventory in QuickBooks? Should I be tracking my eCommerce
inventory in QuickBooks, and especially in QuickBooks Online? Generally, at least what I recommend is that you shouldn’t
be tracking inventory at a detailed level in QuickBooks Online, and that you’re better
off using, initially, spreadsheets and then moving toward using an online inventory app to
manage all of your inventory, and especially if you’re
selling on multiple channels. Next, profitability. Ask the accountant how are
they going to structure your financials so you can get
a clear view of your profits, especially profits by channel. A good accountant would understand that and they would likely be using classes to then track income
and expenses by channel. Another thing that you might ask is how are going to track my marketing spend, and can you track that by channel? Next, cash flow. Ask the accountant then
what do they recommend for helping you improve your cash flow. And generally, we look at
how much money is tied up in inventory and then how
much money you have set aside to purchase additional inventory. Next, sales taxes. Sales taxes can be very
complicated for eCommerce sellers. And it depends on if you’re
selling on Amazon or Shopify. If you’re selling on Amazon
and if you’re an FBA seller, then you might have to deal with marketplace facilitator states. If you’re selling on Shopify, or if you’re selling through your website, then you’d really need to
look to see if you have some exposure when it
comes to sales taxes. Next, understand what services they’re actually going to provide to you, what that includes and make
sure that they provide you a written service agreement
or an engagement letter. Ask about their pricing. Do they give you upfront pricing? Or do they charge by the hour? With upfront pricing, you
have that peace of mind knowing that exactly how much the services are going to cost. If they’re charging by the hour, then you’re running some risk and you really wouldn’t want
them to do all this work to find out that they’re
charging you way more than you thought that they would. And while we’re talking about pricing, I would highly encourage
you to avoid comparing just what accountant A is charging you versus accountant B is charging you. What you should be
comparing is what services are they going to provide to you. And perhaps accountant A charges more, but they give you more value
and they do more for you. So be clear on what
they’re providing to you and make sure you that
understand what that is. And if they seem too cheap, well, you get what you pay for, so beware. So remember, ask questions,
ask open-ended questions. Don’t just rely on the fact that you like their personality and that they’re nice people. Make sure that you go through
these questions with them. I hope that this helps you to
find an eCommerce accountant who understands Amazon and Shopify. If you’re looking for
an eCommerce accountant, my firm VM Wasek specializes in eCommerce for creatives and makers, so
check the description box below to see how you can contact me. If this content is helping you,
make sure that you comment, like, share and subscribe to my channel, so you can get all of my latest videos. And if there’s any content
that I haven’t covered yet, make sure that you leave a comment and let me know what that is. That’s what I’m here for to help you guys. I’m Veronica Wasek with
Five Minute Bookkeeping.

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