7 Financial Planning Tips for Your Small Business

Small businesses are expansive. Small businesses are responsible for creating over 66% of net new jobs. Every business in America needs to have good business practices to reel in from last year’s losses. If you want to recover from the pandemic’s impact you need to adapt to the new standards. Coincidentally, you will also learn new effective methods to help your incoming customers. But, what exactly do you need to know to build your business? These 7 helpful financial planning tips will help reevaluate your business’s finances.

1. Controlling Your Invoices

When developing an invoice, you can attach your terms and conditions to the payment. Learn how to create a system that can streamline creating an invoice.

Understand how to negotiate these terms with clients. Make it clear that your invoice has a set due date and payment itemization.

Communicate these terms to your clients and business partners. If you complete the work, it’s not an issue to demand that clients comply with those terms.

When it comes to small business finances, a non-payment can make or break your workflow. It’s your responsibility to make sure payments are complete on-time.

In addition, if a company does not comply, a policy can allow you to add interest on late-payments. Sometimes, accidents happen. So, sometimes these circumstances aren’t malicious.

But, you deserve your money for the hard work you put into projects. Despite this, never feel insecure about demanding a client to comply with your invoice’s set terms and conditions.

2. VAT and Tax Accounts

International business transactions are implementing VAT and various tax accounts in their regions. Small businesses should separate their bank accounts, if possible.

This means having a tax account, a VAT account, and a current account. Make sure to verify whether you can move money between these accounts. This is a great tip for startups. 

You should delineate a portion of each check you receive into a VAT account to manage your V8.0. This can allow you to pay the VAT bill with ease without mismanaging your funds.

You should implement the same method for taxable accounts. You want to make sure you always have enough set aside to take care of tax expenses.

3. Reviewing Bank Accounts

With that said, it’s also important to create a regular workflow when checking bank accounts. This includes reviewing bank statements to track your money management.

While managing money, accounts and transactions are prone to human error. It is vital to prevent vulnerabilities and understand your small business finances as a whole.

Build a routine when checking your savings account. It’s important to hold a rainy day fund for when things get hectic. You may depend on it when business is slow for a few months.

4. Cash Flow Management

Your business should allow a two-month buffer for easy cash flow. Many companies and clients can make it difficult to make on time payments.

Certain independent clients will implement a net-30 or even a net-60 into their payroll system. This is due to payments or fees implemented into their own invoice processing.

With this in mind, make sure you have a clear forecast of how you’ll complete upcoming invoices.

It’s never too late to plan for a delay or a disruption in the payment processing. A 60-day buffer is great to give yourself a future ground plan.

You can create these formulas in excel is An invoice needs time to work through different payment systems, so give a clean 60-days notice. Excel is a great application that can help manage these timetables.

5. Bank Management Relationships

Building a repertoire with your bank management staff will prove beneficial for while you manage finances. A personal relationship with a bank manager can help in a difficult time.

They can help you beyond dileneating numbers and figures. They can notify you of changes within the branch and give you financial advice.

Bank managers can help you navigate and organize and manage finances. They can also give you advice on which savings accounts are most beneficial for your small business.

6. Setting Up Direct Deposit & More

An extra trip to the bank to cash a check or manage payments can take time. Building up a series of direct deposits or standing orders in other countries can streamline this process.

The influx of digital banking is allowing this to become an easier process. This can also prevent the added human error of paper transactions.

When you’re working with troublesome clients, they can use any excuse to not pay.

Setting up an automatic online transaction can help secure these payments. Banks and corporations work through a series of verification processes to break down the payments.

At times, interconnectivity between clients and direct deposits is a precarious process. This might become an issue for certain businesses that don’t have access to these accounts.

But, if you can, routing payments to your account on the first of the month can manage finances and bills.

7. Spreading Your Payments

When your business is dealing with large projects with several profiles, payments may turn tricky. If a project is requiring thousands of dollars to complete, try to even out the payments.

This can consist of scheduling payments across a number of months. These deadlines will hit faster than you expect.

Collect your budget and review the point of sale terminals. You must also account for surcharges of banking fees when predicting these payments.

Financial Planning Tips

If you have the initiative and management skills to run a small business, then start today! These effective financial planning tips can help manage your business and keep you on track.

It’s all about money management and making sure your business is in a good position. Understanding how to have a good grasp on money management can ensure your business is stable.

Click here for more information on how to build your business and manage your finances.

How to Choose a Bank for Your Small Business

600,000 businesses close each year. One of the main reasons why businesses struggle is that they are unable to stay on top of their finances or they have a lack of funding.

One thing that can help your business stay on top of changes and meet financial goals is by choosing the right small business banking company. 

Do you want to learn more about company banking options? Keep reading these top tips to choose a bank for your small business. 

Evaluate Your Needs & Business Goals

The first step to finding the best bank for your small business is evaluating your business needs and goals. Because each company requires different types of financing and services, you must find a bank that can help you meet your goals. 

For example, if your main goal is to grow your business, you may need access to different types of funding from your bank. In this case, you should choose a bank that has a variety of lending options for businesses. 

Consider both your short-term and long-term needs and make sure you find the right bank to help your business operate. 

What Types of Financial Products and Services Are Offered? 

Each bank typically offers the same services. However, there may be some banks that offer specialized financial products that would benefit your business. Before you choose a bank, you must ask them about their financial products and services for small businesses. 

Some common products include business checking accounts, business insurance. loan option, and more. 

Consider Bank Availability & Convenience

When it comes to services for your business, you need to find options that are easily accessible and convenient. For banking, you may want to find a bank that offers online or mobile banking services

This makes it easier to pay bills, monitor business activity, and more. Something else to consider is whether or not your bank has multiple locations. While smaller banks may be able to provide you with great service, you may prefer to have a bank with several locations.

This way, you will have easy access to your business funds when you are travelling, no matter where you are. 

Ask About Rates and Fees

Different banks have different fee structures, so you must ask your bank representative about their rates and fees. 

For example, some accounts may provide you with more interest on your deposits. Choosing a bank with the best interest rates will give you more money from your savings. Other banks may charge you monthly fees, fees for transactions, and charge you for other transactions.

To avoid these annoying fees, you may want to find a company that will help you maximize your savings without increasing your costs. 

Small Bank vs. Big Bank

Next, you should consider the network size of your bank. Most banks and credit unions offer the same services, so it may be down to your personal preferences when you choose between a small bank or a big bank. 

If you are a local business, it may be best to choose a small bank that has local expertise. These smaller banks will be more likely to cater to your business and focus on good customer service. 

However, big banks have more funds and account options, so this may be a big advantage for your company. As was mentioned before, big banks have more branches, so it will be easy to access your accounts while you are travelling. Big banks also often have digital banking services to make it even easier to access your funds. 

Similarly, you need to find a bank that can provide scalability for your future needs. While your business starts small, you may grow exponentially in the coming years. You must find a bank that will accommodate your growth and will be able to work with your growing business. 

This scalability is important when it comes to loan options as well. If your business is growing significantly, you need a bank that will be able to offer you enough funding in the future. 

Look For Industry Experience

When you are looking for a bank for your small business, it is not a one-size-fits-all solution. Different companies have different needs, so you must choose a bank that has experience in our industry. 

Banks with industry experience will have specialized products and services that are meant to help your specific pain points as a business owner in the industry. For example, banks that specialize in the real estate industry can help a real estate agent manage real estate finances and offer investment property loans. 

Do They Provide Lending? 

Finally, you must learn whether your bank provides lending options. As was mentioned before, many companies close due to a lack of funding or capital. To help your business stay afloat during tough times, you need to choose a bank that offers lending options. 

Learn more about a bank’s requirements for securing funding and make sure they offer good interest rates for business loans. You can also find a bank that participates in a preferred lender program if you want to apply for a Small Business Administration loan at some point. 

Learn More About How To Choose a Bank Today

Choosing a bank for your company banking is vital to meeting your financial goals and getting the lending that you need to grow. To find a bank that fits all of your needs, you must take each of these factors into consideration!

Do you want help learning how to choose a bank? CFI.co can help! Our website features articles about business, finance, and more. 

Check out our articles today for more financial tips for your business! 

How to Start Investing Money for the First Time

Did you know that about 145 million Americans own stock? That means that 56% of American adults are invested in the stock market.

Whether you’ve been planning on investing for a while or you’ve gotten swept up in some of the recent meme-stock crazes, learning how to start investing money is an exciting juncture in life.

If you’re looking for information about investing for beginners, you’ve come to the right place.

Let’s take a look at the steps you need to take to come up with a solid investing plan.

Determine Your Style

In the world of investing, there are two primary camps of how to invest your money. These are passive investing and active investing. Both of these have their advantages so long as you are interested in the long term rather than hoping for wins in the short term.

Depending on your personal situation, one of these types of investing might be more appropriate for you.

Active investing is when you do the work to research investments and build and maintain your portfolio. Basically, if you’re planning on signing up with an online broker and buying and selling individual stocks, then you’re thinking about being an active investor.

There are three things you need to ensure that you are successful as an active investor. These include time, knowledge, and desire.

Basically, you’ll need to do a lot of research and homework to be an active investor. You’ll also need to become quite knowledgeable about the stock market and the individual stocks you’re trading. Lastly, you’ll need to want to spend time this way as it’s a big time commitment.

Passive investing, on the other hand, involves putting your money in investment vehicles and letting someone else do all of the hard work. Investing in mutual funds is one type of passive investing, for example. With this type of investing, you can get good returns in the long run and you don’t have to put in nearly as much effort.

Some people choose to go a hybrid route such as using a robo-advisor or hiring a financial advisor.

Determine Your Budget

The next step is to figure out how much money you want to budget for investing. You actually don’t need as much money as you think to start investing, and can start a portfolio with as little as $100.

You will want to make sure that you are ready to invest before you take the plunge. Having an emergency fund is key before you start putting your money into investments. An emergency fund is cash that you have in an accessible account so that you can withdraw it quickly if necessary.

There is some level of risk when it comes to all investments and you want to avoid having to sell your investments out of necessity at an unideal time. Having an emergency fund can help avoid this outcome.

Six months worth of expenses is generally considered a good emergency fund. However, you don’t necessarily need to have that much money before you start a portfolio.

It’s also advised that you take care of any high-interest debt before you start investing. Basically, if you invest in the stock market while you have high-interest debt, you will typically lose money over the long run because of the amount of interest you owe.

Determine Your Risk Tolerance

The last piece of the puzzle is how risk tolerant you are. There is a risk to all investments, but some are riskier than others. Typically, the higher profit you stand to make the more you are at risk of losing. The less risk-tolerant you are, on the other hand, the less profit you will typically make in returns.

You will want to find the balance point that works for you between a risk level you’re comfortable with and maximizing the returns on your money. For example, the whole stock market returns almost 10% a year on average while bonds offer returns around 2-3%. However, bonds are much lower risk than stocks.

There can be huge differences in risk with the broad categories of stocks and bonds, too. You’ll want to understand what you’re getting into whenever you are thinking about making investments whether it’s stocks, bonds, real estate, silver, or something else entirely.

Some advisors suggest that beginners can start with robo-advisors to help them make a plan that works with their goals and risk tolerance. Basically, a robo-advisor is a brokerage service that builds and maintains a portfolio for you with the goal of maximizing your potential for returns and staying within your range of risk tolerance.

Are you looking to learn about different stock investment strategies? If so, check out this article.

How to Start Investing Money: Knowledge Is Power!

It’s easy to get swept up in the latest meme-stock when you’re making investments for the first time. However, it’s a really good idea to step back and look at all of your options with a more sober perspective. Sure, there are opportunities to make money in the stock market, but there is also the risk of losing a lot if you aren’t careful.

If you want to learn how to start investing, there is no substitute for doing a lot of fairly dry research about the market. However, passive investing is definitely a better choice if you aren’t interested in reading financial books or blogs.

Are you looking for more information on all things financial? If so, be sure to check out the rest of our blogs for more articles on investing and finance!

Methods to Improve Digital Banking Experience

Digital banking is a combination of mobile and online banking. Customers expect banks to create a banking experience culture that cultivates trust, nurtures their needs, customizes and surpasses expectations. A digitized banking experience ensures easy access across multiple devices, enhancing accessibility. Using live assistance tools like video chat and co-browsing, banks can provide real-time support, building loyalty.

Methods to Improve Digital Banking Experience

Customers want relevance and customized service. Using CRM software, banks gather insights into the customer journey, helping them deliver customer support. Digital banking safety is a significant concern for many customers. This is why banks should make customers feel secure when sharing personal information online. Here are ways to improve the digital banking experience.

Offer digital onboarding

Customer onboarding starts with applying a new account or service and goes on until the customer is fully engaged. While some banking institutions have part of their process digitized and require physical engagement to complete onboarding, consumers expect ease of completion and use security, digital documentation, and authentication capabilities that will streamline the whole process. When you integrate an ID card scanner into your apps and websites then combine it with optical character recognition technology, ID data is gathered and auto-filled in no time.

Promote mobile selling

As consumers continue to embrace digital banking channels, many in-person sales opportunities are also going digital. Consider personalizing product and service messages then make it possible for clients to purchase through a digital channel mainly because mobile access exceeds branch visits. Need-based services powered by advanced analytics are the way to go.

Include a real person option

Automated customer service options have become standard across several industries. While most of these services can only assist with the most basic requests, providing customers with real-time customer services when they can’t find what they want or have complex issues they need to be solved can boost their digital banking experience. You also include a live chat option for real-time assistance.

Leverage big data and analytics

To gain a sustainable competitive advantage with digital banking experience, understand your customers. Look at your customer’s banking experience and leverage the available data to improve the retail banking experience. Through analytics, banks can access insights to evaluate opportunities, segment customers, and enhance the customer experience for digital banking experience.

Keep mobile apps up-to-date

As customers continue to embrace mobile banking, banks should ensure that the experience is safe and seamless. Constantly updating banking apps allows you to get rid of old and dysfunctional features for more improved, secure, and fast-performing mobile services. Up-to-date mobile apps have fast loading times, improving user experience.

Talk to customers

Banking experiences are all about the customer. This is why they shouldn’t second guess the kind of experience customers want. To improve the digital banking experience, consider asking your customers’ perception of your services and what you can do better. You can survey email or leave a form on the mobile app for your customers to fill in whenever they log on. This can give you a lot of insights that you can use to customize the digital customer experience.

Endnote

Digital banking technology has streamlined most of the processes, making it easier for the consumers. Customers hold the key to success for banks. This is why every digital banking experience should be customer-centric.

Credit Card vs Debit Card: The Key Differences, Explained

While a credit card and a debit card look almost identical on the surface, there is a big difference between a credit and debit card. If you’re looking for which card to use when we’ve rounded up a handy credit card vs debit card guide.

From the differences between the two to how to use each card, we’ve rounded up everything you need to know about credit and debit. Let’s jump in and see which card is right for you and when to use them.

What is a Credit Card?

A credit card is a form of payment issued by a bank or financial institution to lend you money. Unlike a loan, a credit card doesn’t come with loan terms or fixed payment plans. Instead, you’re approved for a certain amount, also known as a line of credit or credit limit.

You can use your credit card as a form of payment online, in-person, through apps, or even on your cell phone in a digital wallet. You’re given a unique credit card number, a card expiration date, as well as a security code for verification purposes. This card is then linked to your credit account.

Whenever you pay for something using your credit card, your account is charged. Every month you don’t pay off your credit card balance, you’re typically charged an interest fee. You can charge an amount up to your available credit limit. A credit card payment is typically due each month.

When your monthly payment is due, there will often be a minimum payment that’s required. Any money over your minimum payment you don’t pay off gets rolled over to the next month, plus interest. To save money, it’s recommended you pay off your credit card balance each month.

What is a Debit Card?

A debit card looks almost identical to a credit card. You’ll have a unique debit card number, an expiration date, and a security code. This card number is then tied to your checking account. Unlike a credit card, you can only spend the cash you have available in your checking account.

A debit card doesn’t come with a line of credit or a credit limit. Whatever balance you have in your checking account is what you can withdrawal from your account using your debit cards. Some savings accounts will also come with a debit card.

You can also use your debit card to take cash out of your bank account. This is done at a Cash Machine, an Automated Teller Machine (ATM) or at a retailer that allows cash-back during a transaction. The money you spend using a debit card comes right out of your bank account almost immediately.

When to Use a Debit or Credit Card?

When it comes to when to use a debit card and when to use a credit card, there’s no right or wrong answer for anyone. Some people prefer to use their credit cards and then pay off the balance in order to accumulate rewards points. Many credit card companies and banks offer points for purchases to be used as cash, for travel, or for additional purchases.

Other people don’t want to run the risk of accumulating a high credit card balance. This is where using a debit card can help keep you out of debt. With a debit card, you’re only spending what you have in the bank.

At an ATM, you’ll often want to use a debit card in order to pull the cash directly from your bank account. You can sometimes withdraw cash from a credit card at an ATM, but this money is added to your credit card balance.

Credit Tips

When using a credit card, it can be difficult to keep your credit balances in check. Because this money doesn’t come out of your checking account directly, it can be easy to slip into a cycle of overspending. This can cause a high amount of debt that you have trouble paying off. This can also significantly lower your credit score

To keep your credit card debt manageable, make paying off your credit card each month a priority. Use your debit card for as much as possible and use your credit card for larger purchases or for places that require a credit card.

Most banks have an automated payment feature where you can choose to pay off your credit card balances or minimum payments each month. Doing this will help make sure you can keep up with the amount of debt you’re accumulating. Credit shouldn’t be used if you can’t afford to pay it back.

Debit Card Tips

When using your debit card, you want to be mindful of the balance in your bank account. If your balance is low and you’re using your debit card without checking, you may overdraw on your account. This means you’ve spent more than you actually have.

To help you stay on track, most banks have an alert system that tells you when your account is below a certain number. This will help alert you that your balance is low. If you’re constantly getting down to a low balance in your account or using your credit card as a way to pay for things you don’t have enough money for, this could lead to a dangerous cycle of debt. You may also be unable to pay important expenses such as your rent, mortgage, or car payment.

For security reasons, it’s recommended you use a credit card, however, so that if a fraud has occurred, your credit card company can cancel the charges and issue you a new card. With a debit card, your bank account information could fall into the hands of someone fraudulent giving them access to your assets.

Credit Card vs Debit Card

When choosing between a credit card vs debit card, it’s important to consider what you’re buying. Paying a utility bill or taking out cash from an ATM is usually done with a debit card. A hotel stay, however, is often done using a credit card.

If you’re looking for more great financial content, check out the banking section here. We have financial resources on everything from credit cards to home loans, wealth management, and more.

7 Essential Steps to Take If You’re a Victim of Banking Fraud

The FTC, also known as the Federal Trade Commission, had more than 2.1 million reports of fraud from consumers in 2020. Banking fraud is one of the most common types of fraud and results in millions of dollars lost each year. 

If you are a victim of banking fraud, there are steps that you can take to regain your safety and to prevent future fraud from happening. 

Do you want to learn more about what you should do if you are a victim of fraud? Keep reading these 7 steps to take after banking fraud to learn more.

1. Immediately Contact Your Bank

When you have identified fraudulent activity on your bank statements or credit reports, it is vital that you immediately contact your bank. While fraud cases and cybercrime continually increase, only 15% of these crimes are reported. 

Reporting fraud to your bank will allow them to take immediate action to protect your account from future transactions. This means that you can be sure that you will not lose any more money. 

They can help you cancel your credit cards and give you replacement cards to protect your finances. Your bank will also be able to refund the money that was stolen out of your account. 

However, if you wait too long to contact your banking institution, you may not be able to refund the money that was stolen.  

2. File Reports & Complaints

Next, it is important that you file reports and complaints. 

First, you should report this crime to your local police department. Even if they are not able to help you identify the source of fraud, filing a report is often a necessary step to take if you want to get your money back. 

Next, you need to file a report with the Federal Trade Commission. They will get more details about your specific case which may be able to prevent other people from being victims of the same scam. 

3. Collect Important Information

If you are the victim of bank fraud, you may need to open a case or file a claim with your insurance agency if you want to get your money back. To make sure you are protected, it is important to collect important information about your case as soon as it happens. 

This includes your account number, when you noticed the fraudulent activity on your account, when you reported this activity, and if you filed a report with the FTC or police. 

Having this information will make other organizations take your case seriously and may help you get a favourable result.  

4. Place a Fraud Alert

Something else that can give you peace of mind after you have been the victim of banking fraud is to place a fraud alert on your accounts. This will not have any impact on your credit score, but it can prevent people from getting credit under your name. 

It essentially acts as a red flag for lenders and other creditors and will require extra verification to be sure that it is you that is applying for new credit. 

5. Change Your Banking Passwords

Next, you need to change all of your banking passwords. If you have been the victim of a financial scam, you will not know how the criminal got access to your banking information. 

For example, they may have stolen the numbers off of your card. Or maybe they hacked into your bank account after you used a public computer to log onto your account. 

By getting a new credit card and by changing your passwords for things like your bank account, you can keep people from accessing your account in the future. It is also important to never share your passwords with anyone who should not have permanent access to your bank account. 

6. Request a Credit Freeze

Anyone can place a credit freeze on their account, which acts as an extra layer of security. It will prevent people from opening any new credit accounts in your name without authorization. 

If you place this alert and someone tries to use your information to open a new account, you will be notified and you may have a better chance of stopping the criminal who has your information. 

7. Take Steps to Prevent Future Fraud

Finally, it is vital that you take steps now to prevent credit card fraud from happening in the future. People who are victims of fraud are often targeted more than once, so it is important that you take steps to protect yourself from this. 

First, it is important to learn how to practice online banking safety. This includes regularly scanning your bank statements for fraud, avoiding public wifi or computers when using private information, and more. 

You also need to understand common types of scams. Recognizing scam techniques can prevent you from being a victim of a banking scam in the future.

 Finally, you can use things like anti-virus protection to stay safe from viruses or malware and to keep your private data safe. These types of fraud awareness will keep you safe in the future!

Learn More About Banking Fraud & Protecting Your Finance Today

Banking fraud is a common tactic that results in millions of dollars lost each year.

However, many instances of banking fraud go unreported. If you have been a victim of fraud or identity theft, it is vital that you take these steps to take control of your banking and to prevent fraud from happening again. 

By staying up to date on trends in finance and banking, you can be prepared for these situations and can even prevent them from happening. 

Do you want to learn more about banking and finance? CFI.co can help! Check out our website for more tips about banking and how you can protect yourself from fraud. 

7 Helpful Business Banking Tips

Did you know that applying the best banking tips for your business can make it more productive?

In today’s volatile markets, entrepreneurs confront a slew of problems, the major one being business finances.

But having a good understanding of your business account and the services provided by your bank or building society can ensure that you’re getting the most out of your business banking.

A business account will undoubtedly help you manage your money and monitor your income and profit progress. This doesn’t matter whether you are a new venture, solo or start-up trader trying to position yourself. 

Getting accustomed to business banking best practices and checking your company account online will assist you in managing your money. This is especially helpful if you are new to accounting and bookkeeping.

Here is a list of 7 business banking tips to assist you in getting the most out of your business account and prevent any mistakes along the way.

1. Select the Best Introductory Offer

There are numerous introductory bonuses to take advantage of when choosing your first business bank account. This will also assist you in comparing accounts and choosing the one that is ideal for you.

They primarily involve providing a term of free business banking. This means you will not be required to pay a monthly service fee. Based on the provider you pick, introductory deals on existing business accounts can last up to 25 months. This allows you to avoid these extra fees as you establish your new firm.

Some initial deals will also waive transaction costs. This makes it totally free to deposit funds through cash, check, or electronic transfer. If you can look around for the greatest introductory offer, you may avoid costly fees and focus on profit in your initial stages of operation.

2. Speak to Your Business Manager

Starting your own business may be stressful enough. That is why you need to seek guidance wherever possible. Your building society or the best bank are among the best options.

You would most certainly be allocated a business manager by any big supplier, whom you may call whenever you need help. You may also use this opportunity to report a problem with your business account if one arises.

Developing a working connection with your company manager will help you obtain timely advice and address any difficulties that may arise.

This support may be quite beneficial for individual entrepreneurs and start-ups who may know their industry or skill but not about business finance.

Even if you’ve chosen an app-based business account with no local branches, you may get online and mobile assistance.

3. Borrow Without Remorse

Many small company entrepreneurs have used personal resources to fund their ventures. This is not suitable as the needs expand. This is because most businesses will need extra cash to support development and expansion.

Any borrowing will come with interest. Hence select your loan product wisely.

4. Don’t Allow Your Cash Flow to Turn Into a Cash Drain

Not every business checking accounts are the same.

The charges you pay for withdrawals and deposits might vary greatly. This is especially important if you run a firm with a considerable volume of transactions. These charges might easily pile up.

Also, not every fee is transactional. There may be extra fees for large amounts of cash, cheques, or coin.

Now, what are you going to do? Inform your banking institutions about your daily usage so that they can assist you in selecting the appropriate account for you.

A financial institution’s cash management services may frequently reduce costs and rates while increasing efficiency. Look for methods to save money by comparing several accounts. Then, select one that will have a minimal strain on your finances.

5. Avoid Overpaying For a Merchant Account When a Simple One Would Suffice

Most retail institutions now provide point of sale payment alternatives. This is because a huge percentage of consumers prefer making purchases using their debit or credit cards rather than cash.

This is useful for both management of cash and record-keeping. But, be certain that the merchant account provider you choose meets your demands in terms of services and charges.

If your transaction volume is not particularly large, a volume-based payment plan may lead to cost savings. In modern days, there are several options available that are tailored to your unique business needs.

Conduct some research and consult with your financial institution about your possibilities.

6. Avoid Combining Personal and Business Expenses

Using a personal credit card to fund your enterprise appears to be a simple solution, and it is a prevalent activity. It is, however, critical to keeping your personal and business spending distinct.

It is for this reason that company credit cards exist. Keeping your company spending separate helps make tax season go more smoothly. It simplifies record keeping and makes your tax accountant happy.

It can help you develop your company’s credit and make it simpler to get other loans in the future. Above all, business credit cards provide excellent incentives explicitly tailored to enterprises.

7. Save Money for Both Your Business and Your Trip Separately

If you are a solo entrepreneur, the boundary between your personal and business money might get blurred.

But, small company owners should keep their personal funds distinct from their business savings. This makes it easy to prepare and budget for expected company needs, such as bulldozers and office supplies.

A long-term savings strategy will enable you to borrow very little and offer a financial cushion for your company. So, put money aside for holidays in one account and businesses in another.

Use the Above Banking Tips to Leverage Your Business Banking Fully

Knowing banking tips and a good connection with your banker may be pretty beneficial for expanding your business.

A competent small business bank will guarantee that qualifying small businesses have enough credit to sustain their operations. Also, they will give solutions to difficulties and go above and beyond to ensure continuous development.

At CFI.co, we offer market news, analysis, and market opinion from around the world. Our specialised editorial staff ensures that readers have a deeper understanding of the factors affecting and transforming the global economy.

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How to Find the Best Bank For Your Needs

Do you want to open a bank account but aren’t sure which bank to choose? Selecting a bank is one of the most important financial decisions you will ever make. All the banks aren’t the same. They differ in the financial products and services they offer to individuals, small businesses, and startups. With so many choices and you may not know where to even start. This is why you need to be more strategic and conduct thorough research to find the best bank that fits your needs.

If you’re wondering which bank suits your needs, here are things you should consider when shopping for a bank. It’ll save you a lot of hassle and money.

1. Identify the Type of Account You Want to Open

Comparing all the types of products and services different bank offers can be overwhelming. To make it much easier, you should identify the type of bank account you want to open depending on your financial goals. Knowing whether you want a checking account, savings account, money market account, certificates of deposit (CDs), can help narrow down your search.

While both saving accounts and CDs help you stash money you don’t want to use for a while, one major difference is that CDs store your money for a pre-determined amount of time and lock in your interest rate for the full term. If you’re looking to keep the money you’ll spend regularly, you should opt for a checking account.

Money market accounts are also similar to a savings account, except the bank can send you a debit card or paper checks, making it easy for you to access your savings.

2. Consider Interest Rates

Most checking accounts don’t usually pay interest, and if they do, the rates are very low. If you want more interest, you can try opening a savings account, CD, or money market account. The rates depend on the bank you choose. In case interest rates matter to you, ensure you find a bank with competitive rates.

3. Find a Bank That Charges Low or No Fees

Opening an account with an institution that charges costly fees isn’t beneficial. You end up losing money instead of saving. When it comes to monthly maintenance fees, you need to choose a bank that charges no fees, low fees, or fees you can waive.

You should also watch out for ATM fees, foreign transaction fees, excess transaction fees, and overdraft fees. If you overdraw a checking account, you may have to pay an overdraft fee. While you may opt for an overdraft protection program, you may end up paying more. So when you’re looking for a new bank, you should find one with more lenient overdraft policies.

Paying fewer ATM fees will depend on the bank and the type of account you want to open. If you often travel in foreign countries, check the bank charges for using your debit card abroad. Also, look at how much different banks charge when you go over your withdrawal limit.

And when you find your perfect account, do this:

Link your checking account to another account at your financial institution so that if you run out of money in your checking account, the bank will pull money from the other account to cover the transaction. You may be charged a fee for this, but it’s typically less than an overdraft fee.

Sign up for low-balance alerts through your bank or credit union’s website. These alerts, which you may be able to receive on your phone, will alert you when you are at risk of overdrawing your account.

4. Consider the Convenience of Your Bank

When it comes to banking, accessibility is a vital factor since you want to be able to access your money as soon as you need it. You need to see if the bank offers convenience in terms of branch location, ATM location, and the availability of digital banking.

Also, look into the bank’s customer support. You want to choose a bank with dependable customer services so you can reach them when you have an issue.

5. Find a Bank That Fits Your Lifestyle

When scouring for banking options, you should stick with a bank that meets your needs. For entrepreneurs, you should opt for a bank that can provide support as you grow your business.

If you’re trying to save money, look for a bank that can help you reach your goals. You may find a bank that lets you open and name separate savings accounts. This can help you create savings account for different uses including a travel fund, emergency fund, and more.

What’s more, your spending habits can give you an idea of a bank you want to work with. If you love tracking your expenses, you can choose a bank that has budgeting tools built into its apps or websites.

6. Examine the Bank’s Digital Features

If you value high-tech digital experiences, you should look into a bank’s digital capabilities. While most banks offer basic services like the ability to pay bills, transfer funds, make mobile deposits and check balances, you also need to see if you can access advanced digital services.

Advanced digital capabilities such as the ability to lock your debit card and manage mobile banking alerts can help enhance your banking experience.

Research the banks you’re interested in and read online reviews to see if they have the digital features you’re looking for.

7. Understand the Terms and Conditions

Before you choose a bank, you should read the fine print. It helps you know if a bank is insured. A safe bank to consider should have insurance, ensuring your money is safe in case something goes wrong and the bank shuts down.
You should also read through your banking account disclosures to ensure you’re aware of the regulations and fees required.

Find the Best Bank for Your Financial Needs

To manage your finances, you’re going to need a bank. Always look at what you need and what each bank can offer you before you choose the best bank.

Also, remember, your choice isn’t permanent. You can change if you outgrow the bank you started with. Read more banking blog posts to learn more about banking and finances.

KPMG Report: NBFIs Lending in Saudi Arabia Sustained Growth in 2021

Khalil Ibrahim Al Sedais, Office Managing Partner – Riyadh at KPMG in Saudi Arabia
Khalil Ibrahim Al Sedais, Office Managing Partner – Riyadh at KPMG in Saudi Arabia

Highlights

  1. Report provides a directional view on the $14.5 billion NBFI industry.
  2. It is covering the real estate, automotive, commercial equipment and other consumer financing.
  3. NBFI sector is expected to grow further backed by the measures taking inspiration from the AML compliance, fintech advancement, cybersecurity, business continuity planning and digitalization.
  4. Currently, more than 35 NBFIs are operating in Saudi Arabia.
  5. SAMA has further applied a new framework for the supervision of finance companies.

(RIYADH, DUBAI) – September 27, 2021:  The first edition of KPMG’s Future of Non-Bank Financial Institutions (NBFIs) Financing looks into the performance of these institutions in the Kingdom. The publication provides a directional view on the $14.5 billion (SAR 54 billion) NBFI industry covering the real estate, automotive, commercial equipment and other consumer financing. This sector is already playing a pivotal role in lending to specific segments of borrowers in Saudi Arabia.

“Despite market turbulence, we have observed growth momentum during the first half of 2021 that started during the second half of 2020 after consumer confidence was regained. It is especially noticeable in the mortgage industry, where volumes were all time high due to domestic demand of housing, low interest rate environment and government guarantee for the first house of citizens. The NBFI sector is expected to grow further backed by the measures taking inspiration from the AML compliance, fintech advancement, cybersecurity, business continuity planning and digitalization in Saudi financial services sector,” said Khalil Ibrahim Al Sedais, Office Managing Partner – Riyadh at KPMG in Saudi Arabia.

Currently, more than 35 NBFIs are operating in Saudi Arabia. As at the end of FY 2020, the total paid up capital of these entities was SAR 14.2 billion ($3.8 billion) where real estate companies stand at SAR 3.9 billion ($1 billion), non-real estate companies SAR 8.8 billion ($2.3 billion) and Saudi Real Estate Refinance Company (SRC), as the refinancing entity of the industry, SAR 1.5 billion ($403 million).

Industry-wide total assets as at the end of FY 2020 were SAR 53 billion ($14.2 billion) which included real estate companies’ assets amounting to SAR 14 billion ($3.7 billion), non-real estate companies’ assets amounting to SAR 31.5 billion ($8.4 billion) and SRC assets amounting to SAR 7.5 billion ($2 billion). Moreover, there was an outstanding loan book, on and off-balance sheet, of approximately SAR 54 billion ($14.5 billion) which included real estate companies’ loan book of SAR 23.5 billion and non-real estate companies’ loan book of SAR 30.6 billion.

Despite SAMA’s new regulations allowing deposit-taking by finance companies, currently, NBFIs are highly dependent on borrowing and securitization as the main source for financing their lending activities. At the end of 2020, equity and liabilities totaled SAR 53 billion of which, liabilities accounted for 63%, while capital and reserves represented 27% and 10%, respectively.

Ovais Shahab, Head of Financial Services at KPMG in Saudi Arabia
Ovais Shahab, Head of Financial Services at KPMG in Saudi Arabia

Ovais Shahab, Head of Financial Services at KPMG in Saudi Arabia, said: “Over the past two years, major developments took place in the sector, including enhanced governance through issuance of new regulations mainly to govern deposit-taking, debt-based crowdfunding, provisions for the expected credit losses etc. Moreover, we have seen competition in the market and some players have gained market share on the basis of their customer reach and efficient onboarding process. SAMA has further applied a new framework for the supervision of finance companies, a risk-based supervision approach to oversee the sector and increase the maturity level of NBFI, a framework that is similar to those implemented to oversee the banking and insurance sectors and similar to what is used by other international regulatory bodies.”

A Guide to Online Banking Safety

71% of bank customers regularly use online and mobile banking options. However, many people do not completely trust online sources and may worry about their information being stolen when choosing an online bank. 

Are you looking for ways to protect information and improve your data security? Keep reading these tips for online banking safety to learn more!

Don’t Use Public Wifi or Computers

One of the most important online banking safety tips to keep your information secure is to only sign in on your personal network or device. When you use public wifi that many people have access to, you never know who will be able to see your browser history or password. 

This is also true for public computers. If you were to accidentally save your password for your online banking institution, it would be easy for a complete stranger to access your bank from the same computer. 

To avoid these potential disasters, it is always best to use your own devices and your own wifi network whenever you have to log into a password-protected website. 

Scan Statements for Fraud

While you want to do everything you can to prevent fraud, it is also important that you are able to identify any fraud as soon as possible. 

One way that you can do this is by regularly scanning your statements for fraudulent activity. Check your bank statement for any purchases that you do not remember making. 

While banks do their part to identify fraud, some purchases may not stand out to them. By looking for fraud in your own account, you may be able to catch suspicious activity. 

Use Anti-Virus Protection

Next, it is important that you protect your devices with anti-virus protection. This can keep you from getting attacked by any viruses or malware. 

Most computers come equipped with some type of anti-virus software, but you want to be sure that you frequently update it for the best protection for your computer. 

Understand Common Scam Techniques

Something else you can do to protect your online banking information is to recognize and understand common bank scam techniques. Scammers will frequently use the same tactics to gain access to your information, so understanding these will prevent them from targeting you. 

One common scam technique is sending you links in an email. While the email may look legitimate, you may find that clicking on this link may lead you to a fake website that looks just like your financial app. Digital currency investors are a big target for this type of scam due to the increase in cryptocurrency prices. A famous example of this was when MyEtherWallet users were sent an email asking them to update their login credentials. In doing so, they gave cyber criminals access to their account where they stole all the assets.

To avoid this scam, it is always best to re-type the URL to your banking institution rather than clicking on a link. 

Your bank will also never request your private information over the phone or over email. If anyone is asking you for information to gain access to your account, you should hang up and call your bank directly. 

Regularly Update Passwords

Many people will re-use the same password for many different websites. However, if someone guesses your password for one website, they may try using the same password on another website.

This is why you should always make your banking password unique from other websites. 

The easiest way to combat keep people from guessing your password is to update and change your passwords regularly. Typically, it is best to change your password once every few months.

Then, anyone who had access to your account will be kicked out with the new password. 

You should also be thoughtful about the types of passwords you use. If you make them one word or if your password is something easy to guess, like your name, people will easily be able to gain access to your account. 

To make your passwords more secure, you should make them a long password with multiple words, numbers, or special characters. 

Sign Up For Text Alerts

If you want to make it easier to identify any fraudulent purchases, you can always ask for text alerts from your online bank.

Banks can send you emails or texts whenever there are large transactions made from your account or if your balance drops too much. 

If you notice that you didn’t make a purchase or transfer money from your account, you can immediately call your bank to stay protected from fraudulent activities. 

Carefully Choose Your Bank

Finally, it is important that you do plenty of research to find the best online bank. If you know that you can trust your bank, you know that they will do anything to protect your assets and information. 

Make sure you check online reviews for banks and you understand your banking needs before you make a decision. You should also prioritize finding an institution with high security to prevent data leaks or hackers.

For example, things like multifactor authentication make it much more difficult for people to gain access to your account without your knowledge.  

If you want to learn more about choosing a bank, check out this article on factors to consider when choosing a bank. 

Improve Your Online Banking Safety Today

You can easily improve your online banking information when you focus on data security. By following each of these banking safety tips, you will not have to worry about fraud, scams, or any other data leaks. 

However, the most important thing you can do to improve your online banking safety is to choose a reliable and trustworthy organization to work with.

Make sure you choose the best online bank so you can be confident in your banking!

Do you want to learn more about online banking and other safety tips? CFI.co can help! Check out our articles on finance and banking to learn more helpful tips.