Top 5 Accounting Myths You Shouldn’t Believe

As a business owner, you shouldn’t believe everything you hear or read about accounting. While there’s plenty of information out there on the topic of accounting, not all of it is accurate. Unfortunately, this often leads business owners down the wrong path, resulting in a poor accounting strategy. To keep your business’s financial records in order, you shouldn’t believe the five following accounting myths.

#1) Accounting Requires Excellent Math Skills

While knowledge of math can certainly help, it isn’t a prerequisite for accounting. Most accounting software, for example, will perform math calculations automatically. You enter your business’s transactions, after which the accounting software will add them up. By eliminating the need for manual math calculations, accounting software reduces the risk of errors to promote cleaner financial records.

#2) Accounting Consists Strictly of Taxes

While calculating and preparing tax returns is an important step, accounting consists of more than just taxes. In the most basic sense, accounting is the act of recording all financial transaction. Whether it’s a credit or debit, all financial transactions processed by your business should be recorded. With that said, the creation of these financial records can certainly make tax preparation easier. But that doesn’t mean accounting is only related to your business’s taxes.

#3) You Must Hire a Professional Accountant

Contrary to popular belief, you don’t always need to hire a professional accountant to handle your business’s financial accounting needs. Assuming you run a small business that handles a low volume of sales, you can probably do it yourself.

#4) Accounting Isn’t Important

This statement couldn’t be further from the truth. According to the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), roughly half of all small businesses fail in their first five years. While small businesses can fail for any number of reasons, poor accounting consistently ranks at the top of the list. If you don’t invest enough time or resources into accounting, your small business may struggle to keep up with its competitors.

#5) All Accounting Software Is the Same

Don’t assume that all accounting software is made equal. There are dozens of types of accounting software, some of which are installed and accessed locally on a computer or device, whereas others are accessed over the internet via a Product-as-a-Service (PaaS) model. Quickbooks Desktop, for instance, is installed locally on a computer, whereas Quickbooks Online is available as cloud-based PaaS software.

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