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Simon Toby

Business

A Quick Guide To Tax Avoidance And Tax Evasion

Tax is mandatory and can make your life miserable when it is mismanaged. Business owners are required to pay tax and are usually under more scrutiny than regular wage earners. The good news is that business owners have a legal tax avoidance window to explore.

Tax evasion is illegal because it attempts to reduce tax liability by deceit. On the other hand, tax avoidance is a legal and wise attempt to lower the tax bill. A business owner can avoid tax by restructuring transactions to reap maximum tax benefits.

What is the thin line between tax evasion and tax avoidance?

The difference between tax evasion and tax avoidance is the intention of the business owner. Tax avoidance reduces the tax payable, considering the deductions and tax credits applicable to the business. It reduces the tax burden, leaving the firm with more profit.

It is ethical to keep a business’s taxable amount at its minimum. On the other hand, it pays to avoid the following common criminal activities during 1099-nec.

  • Deliberately omitting an income

A business owner who deliberately underreports or conceals information about their income is fraudulent. For instance, a business owner who refuses to surrender all details about the day’s receipts deliberately underreports. On the other hand, a landlord who fails to report rent collection details is liable for tax evasion.

  • Making false entries in records or maintaining a parallel set of books

 A business manager who keeps two records is deemed to be in accounting irregularity. The discrepancy in the books of accounts and financial statements is evidence of fraud.

  • Claiming overstated deductions on tax return

It is illegal to overstate travel expenses or claim unsubstantiated deductions. Business owners can claim to have paid their close family for duties not performed.

  • Categorizing personal expenses as business expenditure

This is a likely tax trap for many small business owners.  Typically, startup businesses will use personal assets such as a car, laptop, and utility bills for business and personal use. Therefore, business owners should keep proper records to reduce the chances of tax fraud.

  • Transferring assets or hiding incomes

Concealing business funds or hiding business income in a different account is illegal. Other times, a business owner may deliberately allocate business income to a relative in a lower tax bracket. This is considered tax fraud.

  • Hiding behind sham transactions

Business owners can avoid or reduce tax liability income by deliberately identifying a transaction. For instance, labeling dividends as interests to deceitfully evade tax is engaging in sham transactions.

How to minimize the tax burden

A business can skillfully obtain a minimal tax rate by either of the following means:

  • Maintaining a minimal taxable income
  • Maximizing tax credits and deductions for both business and personal
  • Controlling income and deductions timing by embracing forecasting

Conclusion

Planning to maximize tax deductions is critical because they are always better than tax credits. Make solid estimates for personal and business income for successful tax planning for your business.

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Business

Great ways to promote your B2B services

If you’re looking for ways to promote your B2B services, you may want to first identify your audience, their pain points and preferred communication channels and tactics for ongoing business development. These help you select the right marketing strategies that put your B2B services right in front of your customers. Unfortunately, with so many tactics, tools and channels available for B2B marketing, choosing one that suits you may be challenging. Read on to learn ways you can promote your B2B services.

Tips for promoting your B2B services

Here are some essential tips for promoting your B2B services:

  1. Attend business events, conferences and workshops

Business events, workshops and conferences are a great opportunity to market your B2B services. They give you direct access to potential clients, allowing you to showcase your services and sell your business. When attending business events and workshops, try standing out from your competitors to attract prospects. A great way to do this is to use custom-made exhibition stands. These exhibition stands usually have eye-catching visuals and images, creating a good first impression on your target audience.

  1. Consider a niche-driven approach

Your target audience is likely to spend cash on a business that gives them personalised attention and makes them feel unique. So, find an area of the industry you can provide specialised solutions and experiences for your consumers. This will help make your marketing efforts easier as it defines what you do and distinguishes you from the competition.

  1. Update your website

Be sure to update your website regularly – at least once every three weeks. This makes you seem like a vibrant and active business to your prospective clients. It also helps you gain more traffic to your web pages. You can add landing pages on your website that direct prospects to specific audience segments, providing a way to showcase something new you offer. You can also create a content calendar for your website that outlines the regular content that you have uploaded.

  1. Use search engine optimisation

If you want your consumers to discover your B2B services quickly, use search engine optimisation (SEO). SEO improves the visibility of your website when people search for terms relating to your services. You can use SEO in the following ways:

  • On-site SEO: Include target keywords at the correct densities in your blogs and web pages
  • Off-site SEO: Add links to guest articles and social media posts that point back to your website
  1. Invest in social media

Social media is growing daily, and most businesses use it to connect with vendors, consultants and colleagues. You can use social media platforms to join in on discussions, share solutions and follow target audiences. This will help you find more prospective clients and interact with your audience, giving you the space and time you require to advertise your B2B services. There are numerous social media platforms you can use to promote your business, including LinkedIn, Facebook, YouTube and Instagram.

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Business

Proactive Network Security Solutions; Factors to Consider to Ensure Your Business is protected

Nowadays, it’s well known that a proactive approach to IT administration is the key to a reliable and safe IT infrastructure. No matter how big or small your company is, most business leaders know that everyone is a target.

Beyond criminal activities, network security problems can also arise from equipment failure, user error, and natural calamities that compromise or even destroy crucial data. There are remedies for any situation, regardless of the cause, but they all hinge on whether your business takes proactive network security solutions to cyber security.

Consider these critical elements while looking for IT security services for your company.

Proactive monitoring

Changes to your systems might become issues in the long term if they are not controlled. Any comprehensive IT solution should continuously and proactively monitor

 the systems and activities of your entire network.

To identify potential system threats like computer viruses, hacking attempts, and more, proactive monitoring involves keeping an eye on and documenting all incoming/outgoing data and activities. As a result, it is essential to put in place proactive network security solutions.

Best practices

Chances are high that your firm should support something if the majority of (or all) security professionals do. Industry best practices are in place because they have consistently been put to the test and consistently produced the best results in the vast majority of circumstances. Trust the consensus of all the experts rather than just one.

Backup and Recovery

A data recovery strategy and various backup systems, both on- and off-site, should be a part of any complete proactive network security solutions to ensure your business can recover in the event of a security breach, data loss, or equipment failure.

The data recovery strategy is your last line of protection and a requirement for every business, regardless of size. In the worst-case scenarios, data loss can (and has) led to complete company failure. The repercussions of data loss can be severe. Data loss means your clients will no longer have faith in your capacity to keep everything working correctly.

Communication

Working communication tools are essential for prosperous firms but are sometimes disregarded. To guarantee that your business can easily communicate with clients, partners, and vendors, email, telecommunications, and electronic data exchange (EDI) must be operational.

Although mobile devices and other communication technologies have advantages, the rise of BYOD in the office has created new opportunities for hackers to access your system. Your IT staff should implement procedures and guidelines to handle security breaches in communication.

Network Security

Threatening malware and illicit conduct abound on the internet. Because of this, network security measures like firewall intrusion prevention, spam filtering, and malware protection, to mention a few, are engaged in a never-ending conflict with cybercriminals.

The ideal approach for any business is to select an extensive network security plan specifically tailored to meet your company’s unique network security requirements because there are as many solutions as thieves learning how to circumvent them.

Strategic Planning

Examining the large picture is just as crucial as studying the problems. It is vital to have a clear strategic IT plan for expansion supported by a strategy for carrying out that plan because a business that plans for growth is more likely to evolve.

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Technology

The Fundamental Elements Of Leadership Development

Every business needs to train tomorrow’s leaders. The return on this investment is always enormous because leaders often spur the growth of the organization. Leaders also drive innovation and mentor the younger generations in the workforce. Developing a strong leadership team begins with creating an internal leadership training program that is established on various elements. These elements include.

Communication

Communication is a vital element of leadership development. Communication is not a skill that can be learned by reading or watching a video. It is a skill that every leader must possess at all levels and all the time. A qualified leader must utilize their communication skills during phone calls, text messages, and emails.

Since leaders spend the majority of their time communicating, having good communication skills is important in the development of effective leadership.

Accountability

One of the other critical elements of leadership development is accountability, which requires business owners to hold leaders accountable for their actions. This is what determines how teams perform in the business. Trained leaders can define accountability, and this ensures uniformity due to constant fulfillment of commitments and the production of positive results.

Leaders must hold themselves and members of their teams accountable to ensure all goals are met.

Change Management

Businesses are always dynamic due to factors such as employee turnover, company growth, and changes in the market. This is why it is vital for leaders to expect and prepare themselves for constant change. This means that leaders must receive sufficient training to manage change effectively whenever it happens.

This is what makes change management one of the most crucial elements of leadership development.

Influence and Negotiation

A qualified leader must inspire and encourage others to help drive the vision of the business into reality. Leaders who know how to negotiate and influence are able to take on the role of influencing employees to achieve the best results. This is a skill that is necessary for leaders looking to build relationships or align priorities.

It is also a crucial skill for leaders looking for a win-win situation that will lead to the best results.

Coaching

This is another one of the vital elements of leadership development. A leader must have this skill to be able to derive the true potential of the employees. Leaders often learn how to become coaches through training. As a coach, a leader can guide employees on how to achieve organizational goals.

Transparency

This is a vital element of leadership development in that as a leader, when you are transparent; you are challenged less by those you oversee. As a good leader, you can use transparency to help those around you to embrace change which can be accomplished through communication, shared decision-making, and informed debate.

A transparent leader will credit others when success occurs and take the blame for any failures that may occur. This enhances a peaceful working environment.

Endnote

If you are looking to develop leaders in your organization, you must implement all the elements highlighted. They are effective in ensuring that your organization leaders can communicate and effectively lead the other members of the organization.

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Technology

All You Need To Know About Escrow Reconciliation

Escrow reconciliation is the process of reviewing an account during or at the end of an escrow period to ensure that all payments have been made and disbursed properly.

The process is vital because it’s the only way to know that the financial records are accurate and complete. For example, in the case of a real estate purchase, if there’s a problem with the escrow account and closing doesn’t occur as scheduled, it could cost both parties money, delay their plans, and cause additional stress.

If you’re selling your home, for instance, you’ll want to make sure your lender has released its lien on the property so that you can clear the title and hand over the keys to your buyer. If you’re buying a home, you’ll want to be certain that all of your funds have been appropriately disbursed, so there are no liens against the property.

Because it happens at or near closing time, escrow reconciliation can be stressful. But if you work with a reputable escrow company, regularly review your account statement, and ask questions before signing final documents, understanding and resolving any discrepancies should be relatively straightforward.

Let’s look at other reasons why escrow reconciliation is important.

Why is Escrow Reconciliation Important?

Help to account for changes on a mortgage

Escrow reconciliation is a process that helps account for changes on a mortgage. Escrow accounts are used to pay for property taxes and insurance premiums, which can fluctuate from year to year. So each year, the servicer reviews escrow account activity, determines if there’s a shortage or surplus, and adjusts the monthly payment as needed.

Things you should know about escrow reconciliation:

– It happens once a year

– You’ll get an annual statement telling you what your total payments were and how they were used

– If there’s a surplus, it will be refunded to you

– If there’s a shortage, it will be added to your monthly mortgage payment, spread out over 12 months

 It helps to make sure you have enough money set aside in your escrow account

Escrow reconciliation is the process used to make sure you have enough money set aside in your escrow account to pay your property taxes and insurance when they’re due.

During this process, the stakeholders compare the amounts we collected in escrow during the year with the actual taxes and insurance payments made on your behalf. If there was a shortage or overage, they might need to adjust your monthly mortgage payment.

The goal is always to keep your escrow account as accurate as possible. Keep in mind that escrow accounts only estimate what will be owed in taxes and insurance for the upcoming year.

  1. Helps to avoid shortage or overage at the end of the year

Escrow reconciliation ensures that the amount you pay each month will be enough to cover year-end expenses. If there is a shortage, you may have to pay a large sum out of pocket to make up the difference, or your lender may decide to increase your monthly payment for the following year. Reconciliation also protects you from overage. When your escrow account has more money at the end of the year than it needs, your lender is required to refund your excess funds.

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Business

What Is Spend Management and Is It Right for You? A Closer Look

Have your small business costs been creeping up?

A CNBC survey shows that 47% of small business owners have passed recent inflationary and supply chain cost increases on to consumers with another 37% likely to follow.

Charging customers more shouldn’t be your only solution for rising business costs. It might not even be the right one for your business. Simply managing spending more closely might better serve your company and your customers.

So what is spend management, and what role does it play in the success of small businesses? Read on to see if it might be the right solution for better controlling your rising business costs.

What Is Spend Management?

Spend management is a process for tracking, analyzing, and controlling business spending. It goes beyond general accounting practices. It helps businesses to spot and stop overspending and then use the savings to drive growth.

For any business, controlling and cutting costs is important. But it can be critical to survival for small businesses that may lack significant capital. Effective spend management helps small businesses maintain control of and maximize the ROI of every dollar they spend.

So what does all of this jargon mean? To better understand what spend management can do, consider the following example.

How Managing Spending More Effectively Can Cut Costs: An Example

You’re probably not tracking your business expenses in a black ledger. Still, accounting software can be almost as manual.

Consider the time spent on purchase requests and expense reports. They must be filled out, approved, and consolidated in your accounting system. It isn’t until all is said and done that you can get a clear picture of how the money was spent and whether those dollars were spent wisely.

It is hard to save money that has already been spent.

A spend management solution known as p cards can eliminate the need for expense reports or purchase requests and allow you to track and manage expenditures across all departments and employees in real time. Imagine how much paperwork, time, and money can be saved with this one tool.

And P cards are just one example of how streamlining the process of managing spending can reduce costs so you can grow profits. The more you learn about p cards and other spend management tools, the better you’ll see how they can help protect your company from excessive and rising costs.

Is a Spend Management Solution Right for Your Small Business?

If you don’t have a clear picture of why and where every company dollar is being spent, you could run into trouble and out of cash. While implementing a spend management solution comes with its own costs, they are costs that can save you money in the long run.

The right spend management tools can help you spend less time accounting for costs and more time cutting them. In turn, the savings can help drive company profits even when inflation arises.

We want to see your small business thrive. Explore our business section for more tips and advice.

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Business

Why Starting a Business Podcast Is One of the Best Ways to Promote Your Brand

Did you know more than one-third of Americans, 12 years old and up, listen to podcasts regularly?

A podcast is a modern-day radio show with one difference: anyone can produce a podcast. There are podcasts about everything, entertainment podcasts, podcasts to learn more about a particular subject, true crime podcasts, and more.

A podcast can engage your listeners, make you look like an expert, and help you reach a broader audience. If you like to talk and have something to say, starting a podcast seems like it would be a good fit.

If you are wondering how a business podcast is one of the best ways to promote your brand, this short and simple guide is for you.

Build a Personal Connection

One of the best reasons to start a podcast is to build a personal connection. Your listeners will hear your voice, get inside jokes, and feel like they know and are personally connected with your brand. A podcast allows you to be in your target audience’s ear, which is excellent for your business.

Increase Traffic Generation

An important reason to start a podcast is to increase traffic generation. The best businesses connect their podcasts directly back to their company. You can increase traffic to your website, generate more leads, and give your business a boost, with a podcast.

Build More Brand Authority

A great tip for starting a podcast is to build more brand authority. During the podcast, you can answer your customer’s questions and their biggest fears about using your business. This will make you an authority in your niche, which is great for your company.

Reach Potential Clients and Customers

One reason to start a podcast is to reach potential clients and customers. By podcasting, you are allowing clients who have never heard of your company, to experience you and get to know what you are about. This gives you another channel for reaching clients and customers.

If you are interested in a podcast marketing company, click here.

Bring in Additional Income

An important reason to start a podcast is to bring in additional income. You can do sponsorships, ads, affiliate marketing, paid interviews, and more. This is a great way to supplement your income and level up your business.

Connect with Other Business Owners

A great reason for starting a podcast is to connect with other business owners. You can collaborate on podcast episodes and cross-promote your business. Not only will you make new friends, but you will be exposed to a whole new audience.

Start a Business Podcast and Grow Your Company

If you want to share your knowledge and expertise, starting a business podcast can be the right choice for you.

A podcast has several benefits for your business including, creating demand, creating accessibility, and building authority in your niche. Best of all, a podcast helps you find your ideal customer and connect with them on a deeper level.

If growing your business is a goal, starting a podcast is what you need.

Don’t forget to browse our site for advice on business, products, services, and more.

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Technology

Debunking the Most Common SEO Myths That Exist Today

Are you one of the mere 30% of small businesses with an SEO strategy? While you may be concerned that SEO is passé, that’s the furthest thing from the truth. SEO content marketing can offer long-term gains that will strengthen your online visibility.

Read on as we debunk the most common SEO myths that exist today!

SEO Never Changes

You only need to embed SEO keywords once and then you’re done, right? Wrong. In fact, you need to make a practice of checking and revising your keywords.

Updating your keywords can enhance search engine rankings. Make a point of updating them at least every quarter, if not sooner, as part of business ownership. Start by looking at your meta-titles, tiles, tags, and copy.

As a small business owner, keep some room in your budget for updates. You may need to hire an SEO professional or web developer who can integrate SEO into your HTML.

SEO Hurts Your Rankings with Duplicate Content

Are you concerned that too much SEO duplication will give you a low search engine ranking? Duplicate content simply means that the same content appears across different pages. Sometimes this happens within the same website.

And because of this, the common myth holds that search engines will penalize you. The good news is that search engines realize that duplicate content will happen. While you won’t get penalized, you might end up behind syndicated content in the search rankings, so it can be worth addressing this SEO issue.

Good Content Is Irrelevant

If you believe this myth, then you can post just about anything and stuff it with keywords and links. Fortunately, search engines will tell you otherwise. Search engines are not focused solely on counting keywords to determine your ranking.

Creating quality and relevant content is critical to securing an audience. Learn more about how you can draw in customers with strong SEO practices and engaging content!

Stuffing Your Site with Backlinks Is Smart

You might be able to get a good deal on buying backlinks in bulk but proceed with caution. You don’t want to stuff your content with so many links that they become irrelevant.

Plus lots of other people probably are buying the same links, so the links lose value. To make matters worse, some search engines will penalize you if you do this.

As a small business owner, your business plan should prioritize an investment in relationship building. This is how you can generate relevant links from other sites.

You’ll create more logical content connections. And you can build a streamlined system when you invest in staff to handle this part of your innovative marketing strategy.

Don’t Fall Prey to SEO Myths

Falling prey to SEO myths will only hold back your business. Add SEO content marketing to your overall strategy to improve your search engine ranking. When you’re deliberate about crafting quality content, you’ll translate better rankings into sales.

For more tips to upgrade your business plan, check back for new articles.

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Business

How to Start a Skincare Company

Are you thinking of starting your own skincare company? 4 million Americans applied to start a new business in 2021. The beauty industry is booming with opportunities for new business owners.

So how do you get started? Developing skincare products requires more planning than the average business. Aspiring business owners need to research the relevant laws and regulations before developing their products.

Do you want to learn more about how to start a skincare company? Here is everything you need to know before you jump in.

Find a Niche

The beauty industry is saturated with thousands of skincare brands that create everything from cleansers to sunscreen. So what makes your beauty products stand out from the crowd? Before you start developing a skincare line you should be certain about what makes it authentic.

Take a look at some of the skincare products on the market and decide who your target customer is. Luxury skincare of specialized treatments? The world is your oyster!

Check Laws and Regulations

Products that are applied to the human body are subject to strict cosmetic regulations in the US. Examples of these products include:

  • Makeup
  • Skin Moisturizers
  • Perfumes
  • Lipsticks
  • Deodorants

Products must be labeled with the correct information. You should also make sure that your business is registered and insured. Educate yourself on allergens, preservatives, storage, and shelf life of skincare products.

It is also important that your product is tested by a reputable laboratory such as BPI Labs. Laboratories will put skincare products through rigorous tests to ensure they are safe and free from dangerous bacteria. A reputable lab can also advise on packaging and labeling compliance.

Work With a Manufacturer

Unless your products are homemade, you’ll need to find a manufacturer. You should factor in price, speed, and standard when you start speaking to a manufacturer. There are lots of companies in the US that manufacture skincare products but it may be cheaper to find a company abroad.

When your product becomes popular you’ll need a manufacturer who can keep up with the demand. Once you nail the manufacturing process, you can start promoting and selling your products.

Develop Your Marketing Strategy

It’s no use having a killer product if nobody knows about it. A lot of social media influencers will promote your products for free on their platform. They can review your product and advertise your skincare line to their followers to increase your website traffic.

Build your online presence by posting exciting, high-quality images of your products on your social media channels. People are more likely to check out your products if they buy into the overall branding of your product and story.

Start Your Skincare Company Today

Starting your own skincare company requires preparation and knowledge of the beauty industry. You’ll need more than a great product to create a successful line of skincare products. Make sure you do plenty of market research and find your niche before you get started.

Did you find this article useful? Read more articles like this on our blog!

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