Return to Blog Page

Are You Taking Advantage of Accounting Automation in your E-commerce, Retail or Restaurant Business?

For busy e-commerce, retail and restaurant businesses (and the accounting teams that serve them), e-commerce and point-of-sale (POS) accounting automation is fast becoming table stakes. This is because the explosion of revenue channels and continuous development of new selling platforms make maintaining up-to-date accounting a daunting task without a solid accounting automation strategy.  

Without up-to-date accounting, business owners are essentially flying blind, and their accounting teams will struggle to provide the real-time insights needed to propel the business forward. Imagine only knowing how much cash you had in the bank, but not how much was due for sales tax? Or having no idea how much your Amazon or Shopify sales were costing you in terms of fees?  

Manually updating the books with the daily sales and revenues from multiple platforms is not practical either, because with most businesses utilizing multiple channels, the time it takes to calculate and book the accounting entries each day is more than anyone wants to spend. 

Yet the problem remains - you can’t run your business without up-to-date accounting!

Most prevalent e-commerce platforms

According to “The economic impact of manual accounting data for retailers, restaurants, and accounting firms” the most widely-used e-commerce platforms for managing payments and sales are PayPal, Square, Amazon, and Shopify, however integration into accounting systems like QuickBooks Online, Xero or ZohoBooks has lagged behind, due to perceived complexity or lack of information about the choices available.

Yet the need is there.  Accounting professionals indicated that the task of reconciling payouts to the daily sales they were based on, was the most complex and pressing need.

Streamlining sales processes

E-commerce and POS systems are designed to optimize sales outcomes - and they generally do their job very well - but most do not pay attention to the needs of the accountants in their reporting.  And since each platform is different, navigating through their various nuances and workflows adds to the workload and complexity. 

The research indicates that businesses incur significant additional manual bookkeeping work due to e-commerce and POS platforms, translating to substantial monthly staff hours.  Many businesses only update their accounting systems with all their sales and payment data once per week, or even once per month, because of the complexity and time involved to do so.

Benefits of accounting automation implementation

Accounting automation offers many benefits including; time savings, accuracy improvements, books that are updated daily (automatically!), historical data tracking, and a much better experience for the user. It also mitigates costs associated with manual labor, boosts efficiency, and facilitates quicker access to crucial business information.

Challenges in automation implementation

Implementing automation technologies entails investment in training, along with operational adjustments to leverage their full potential. Key considerations include selecting the right accounting automation platform that seamlessly integrates with the general ledger program and all the sales channels, ensuring the chosen app has a thorough understanding of the business and the pain points being addressed, and prioritizing top-notch customer support for smooth onboarding and ongoing assistance. 

In conclusion:

Embracing an automated approach to e-commerce and POS accounting is key to getting ahead today. For more insights, download the Executive Summary of our research on E-commerce and POS Automation, which provides a comprehensive overview of key findings, along with recommendations.

At Bookkeep, we are committed to delivering accurate automated solutions for e-commerce, retail, and restaurant businesses, and freeing up valuable time for accountants and bookkeepers. We seamlessly integrate over 60 different sales channels and payment platforms with QuickBooks Online, Xero, or Zoho Books, eliminating the need for manual data entry. 

Feel free to reach out to our team for further assistance. 

We will also be happy to answer any questions at the E-commerce Business Live show in Las Vegas!