Every small business needs to keep records of sales invoices and income received and purchase invoices in respect of expenses. It is not sufficient for accounting and taxation purposes for these receipts and payments to be left in the office or the back of a van in a carrier bag. At some stage these prime bookkeeping documents need to be processed. Processing the financial documents related to a business enterprise basically means they need to be listed. For taxation and financial control purposes the invoices also need to be added up and analyzed. The most basic method would be to simply make a list of the sales income and a second list of the purchase expenses. Using a manual method of listing the information falls short of the analysis required and is more time consuming that using a little technology to both ensure the summation is accurate and the analysis simplified. Listing the sales and expenses of a small business on spreadsheets is no more difficult then a manual paper system and has tremendous advantages in automating and ensuring accuracy.
Instead of listing the items on a paper list the items can be just as easily listed on a spreadsheet which will add up the items as required without the requirement to double check the adding up is accurate. Such a list has a history in accounting term as a sales day book and a purchase day book. To achieve the required analysis of sales and purchases all that is required is to write into the top of each of the spreadsheet columns the titles of the analysis headings required. Then repeat the value of each transaction in the total column into the analysis columns. Use the spreadsheet technology to add up each column and you have an effective bookkeeping spreadsheet. Preparing such a bookkeeping spreadsheet might and often does suffice the needs of the smallest business enterprise and is a close step towards achieving a valuable tool for this purpose, bookkeeping software. Bookkeeping software can be as simple as a home produced spreadsheet but with additional facets that can have significant financial benefits to the business.