5 Ways Your Beverage Business Would Benefit from Cloud Accounting Software

As a specialty beverage retailer, you have some unique challenges, both in-house and customer-facing.

You’re selling a premium product, so your customers are expecting a premium experience. Does your business feel well polished and high end? Are transactions painless and modern? Does the physical vibe of your space match the personality of your offerings?

And since you are likely creating custom beverages and running small batch production sizes, it’s particularly critical for you to understand your cost and profit margins. Do you have the right inventory levels, pricing structure, and promotion dollars?

Sure, you’d love to optimize all these things—if you weren’t busy just keeping your head above water. It all sounds very time consuming, complicated, and cost prohibitive, right?

Well, it used to be. But, honestly, it’s not anymore.

The secret that’s revolutionizing the beverage business is easily attainable now, thanks to modern technology. It starts with an integrated, cloud-based network of apps that allows business owners to deliver a quality customer experience while also simplifying and streamlining their backend work.

And to knit all of this together, it’s important to have accounting software that compliments the strategy, rather than slowing it down.

For many business owners, accounting software is the very last piece of the puzzle—the one that’s usually chosen based on whatever a business partner, bookkeeper, or accountant likes best, without any consideration for whether it’s the right choice for the business. But your accounting software is the core of your finances, which means that it can (and should) be your primary tool for understanding your company profits and your business in general.

For this reason, we encourage you to make accounting software part of the discussion up front. It can really change the way your business comes together and enable you to leverage the technology you might already be using.

We love Xero accounting software for a number of reasons—one of the primary ones being that it so effortlessly integrates with other technology solutions. We’ve seen Xero make a huge difference in our clients’ businesses, and yours could be next!

Here are the top 5 benefits of switching to Xero:

1) Direct connection with your point of sale system

Why do you want a direct connection between your accounting system and your point of sale system? Simple: no more moving numbers from one system to the next. If set up properly, these systems can share data in real-time, without the headache of manually transferring data.

The big benefit of this, to you (besides saving precious time and knocking a tedious task off your To Do list) is more accurate data and the ability to more easily analyze your business’s performance. It also allows you to be more proactive and well-informed in your decision-making.

Why wait on your accountant to provide your numbers at the end of the month, when it’s too late to act on them? You want to be able to react to competition and market forces in real-time, and you’re going to need real-time data to do that.

Here’s how it works:

  • You register sales throughout the day on your iPad, which your cloud-based point of sale system records.
  • At the end of the day, all sales are pushed to Xero automatically. Depending on your point of sale system, you can also have your inventory automatically updated.
  • You have access to real-time updates on your business at any time through an app on your phone.

2) Smoother inventory management

Do you have a separate inventory/manufacturing system that you run your beverage production through? Or maybe you are a single serve beverage retailer, in which case each drink is unique.

Either way: managing your inventory is a must!

If you are not managing your inventory, then it is managing you – and that is costing you money.

That is why it is so important to have an inventory system that can hook into your accounting software. Xero makes this very easy, while also giving you a more holistic view of where you are making money and what is dragging down profits.

3) Huge time and money savings

Please, stop manually keying all of your banking transactions in your current desktop accounting software—what a waste of your time! And don’t pay your bookkeeper or accountant to do it, either—what a waste of money!
A decent cloud-based accounting software solution, like Xero, will allow you to reallocate those hours and dollars in more beneficial ways. For example, you could actually invest in a business advisor, who could really help you grow our business by identifying other opportunities for increasing profits and decreasing expenses.

4) Peace of mind that your financial records are secure (plus: no more paper!)

Are your financial records sitting on your accountant’s desktop?

What about all of those receipts and documents that are sitting in a shoe box somewhere collecting dust?

Even if you store your records electronically, storing them locally is not the safe and secure option you might think it is. Should anything happen to your physical space, you will be so relieved that you took the time to move your records into the cloud, where you can access them anytime and, most importantly, anywhere—safely and securely.

You need your data hosted by a third party that’s reliable and proven, because storing and keeping data safe is all they do all day long. If this transition isn’t something you’re comfortable managing yourself, hire someone to help you (like us!). It is definitely worth the up-front investment and the benefit of ensuring that all your documents are secure.

Plus, you can say goodbye to paper, forever!

Imagine using your phone to capture images and attach them to transactions electronically, making them easily accessible for future reference, or in the event that you get audited.

Imagine never again collecting receipts to send to your accountant, or having to pay someone to sort through your mess.

Imagine running your business, the way you’d like to run it, rather than wasting hours shuffling paper in some back room.

5) Enhanced financial visibility into your company

I have two questions for you:

  1. As long as you have money in your bank account, do you think you’re doing ok?
  2. Have you ever wanted to see a summary of your financials, but your accountant keeps them guarded and will only divulge them when absolutely necessary?

If the answer to either of those questions is yes: you need to move to Xero.

The most successful business owners out there all have something in common: they know and understand their numbers. All of their numbers—not just the sales.

Moving to Xero will give you true visibility into your numbers, enabling you to ask better questions and gain insights you otherwise couldn’t.

Want to know more about what a cloud-based accounting system like Xero could do for you and your business? Let’s talk.

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