Even if you are small, you must track your revenue and expenses. Your choices are probably to learn a program like QuickBooks or hire a bookkeeper as a consultant. I preferred the latter because I had so many other things to learn, I didn’t want to concentrate on that one. Plus I suck at math.
Get your bookkeeping set up from the beginning. If you have an aptitude for bookkeeping, I commend you. However, you must ask yourself, “Am I spending too much time on bookkeeping? Is bookkeeping the best use of my time?” With a small, new company, you are the person who either must do the work or pay for it. You need to pick and choose. At first, I thought I would learn QuickBooks and bookkeeping, but I soon realized that if I spent my time learning and doing this task, I wouldn’t get the product produced.
I hired a bookkeeper who has her own business to do the bookkeeping, my monthly financial reports, and the W-9 and 1099 work. I give her the monthly Excel spreadsheet of revenue and expenses. You are going to need a record of everything.
Try to charge your business-related expenses to one credit card. As a receipt comes in electronically, print out only the page(s) you need and put them in a file. At the end of the month, I review my checks issued, Payoneer if you are paying someone out of the country and not through Fiverr or Upwork, credit card statements, bank transfers, and PayPal. If there is a business expense, I find the receipt that goes with it and then check the expense off the credit card printout. Both get scanned as backup, and every expense is accounted for.
The spreadsheet has six columns: Date, Purpose, Company, Type, Amount, and Credit Card Number. The Purpose column would state what the expense is, such as a book, hosting, subscription, editing, or consulting. The Type column would be production, research, marketing, admin, or education. The Credit Card Number is the last 4 digits of the card the expense was charged to. I send the spreadsheet with the scanned-in receipts and credit card listing, with checkmarks, to the bookkeeper each month. She enters the documentation I send her into QuickBooks and prints out the financial statements for me.
The hardest part is staying up with it on a monthly basis. I have trouble with this, even though I know it is very important. Really try to do this the first of the following month when you get your credit card receipts in. And, just writing this, makes me want to do better.