5 QuickBooks Online Reports Every Business Owner Should Be Using

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5 QuickBooks Online Reports Every Business Owner Should Be Using

Being a business owner can be overwhelming. The detailed nuances require lots of time and energy, which often leads to a lack of attention to the accounting part of the business.

Looking at past, present, and future reports is helpful at tax time and creates a snapshot of financial health.

This information aids in making appropriate financial decisions and tracks the areas where a company is failing or experiencing success.

What QuickBooks Online Reports Are Most Useful?

QuickBooks Online, or QBO, is a powerful streamlining tool for managing accounting in small to medium businesses. Organizing and analyzing your books ensures you can see expenses, income, overdue invoices, and other important data.

There are five QBO reports that business owners should be viewing frequently. These include the following:

  1. Accounts Payable

    Running an accounts payable report shows who you owe money to and how much is owed. Without this report, you could incur late fees and build less-than-stellar credit. Paying your bills and paying them on time keeps vendors happy and means you have products and services when needed.
  2. Accounts Receivable

    Cash flow is the most essential part of your business. You must know who owes you and how much they owe. Collecting past debts is sometimes a good way to bring in more cash in lean times, but more importantly, maintaining a steady stream of revenue guarantees you can pay your bills.
  3. Profit & Loss

    Perhaps the most revealing report is the Profit & Loss or P&L. When comparing income and expenses, business owners can see how much their company makes after expenses are deducted from income. It allows for viewing the categories where expenses might be higher than necessary and areas where lower spending results in higher profits. Using prior periods, P&L reports show trends and target strategies to increase income and decrease costs.
  4. Cash Flow

    Another report business owners will want to run frequently is the cash flow report. It features the source of incoming and outgoing cash. This includes operating, investing, and financial activity. Operating transactions are those that generate revenue or produce expenses that relate to the manufacturing of a product or performing a service. Investing activities are any gains or losses related to the investment of assets. Financial transactions are activities between the owners and creditors and a company. The cash flow statement is often used to create budgets and make decisions about investments and spending.
  5. Balance Sheet

    This report lists the assets, liabilities, and shareholder equity at a particular time. The breakdown is as follows: Current assets, which are liquid assets, prepaid expenses, inventory, investments that will be sold within a year, and accounts receivable; Long-term assets, such as investments that will be held more than a year, fixed and intangible assets; Liabilities; and Owner's Equity. As its name implies, the Balance Sheet must always be balanced according to the formula: Assets = Liabilities + Owner’s Equity. Lenders want to see a balance sheet before approving a loan.

Other Helpful Reports

While these five reports are key to any business, QBO offers a variety of other necessary statements. With at least 20 types of reports and as many as 65 in more advanced versions, business owners should take advantage of this feature. Other handy reports include the following:

  • Outstanding Checks or Missing Checks Report 

    This report shows voided or duplicated checks. This information should be viewed daily to avoid bigger problems later on down the road.
  • Sales by Customer Summary 

    This report is a great way to figure out your target audience for marketing purposes. It also helps to anticipate the needs of larger customers for future reference. Look at this report weekly or monthly.
  • Aging Summary for A/R and A/P 

    Assists with prompt collections and keeps your own creditors happy.
  • The Pending Sales Report 

    Shows what items must be followed up on and when. Without it, you could lose a sale!
  • Expenses by Vendor Summary 

    A quick synopsis of what a company's spending looks like. 

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