Many people have been asking about how I set up the back-end of my business. Like how I track my clients, payments, invoices, contracts, etc. I personally spent way too much time on it. I made it as efficient as possible, but with the amount of clients that I have now, it just wasn’t working for me.
I am all about automating tasks to save time. I spent the money on Honeybook to allow me to automate things like responding immediately after an inquiry, add the clients wedding date to my calendar, have a proposal that I could send in 30 seconds to clients, create timelines with them, send invoices, etc. Including tracking cash in and out.
This was not efficient. It works, but it takes a lot of time. I tried to keep the amount of clicking to a minimum so I saved my most often used documents to the top of my screen on Chrome.
If you hit COMMAND + D, you can make a bookmark to any document at the top of your menu bar.
My income tracking sheet is still called Pine and Honey (that was my old business name) and then the STRATEGY document is my main document that has my client workflow:
My workflow is a result of all the things I do from inquiry to the anniversary email. There are subtasks in each one of those categories, but it keeps me in check and makes sure that I don’t skip anything important. It also lets me know what I should do next.
My new workflow is:
This process ensures that every client is taken care of, I don’t forget anything, and I maximize my time.
I get an inquiry from a bride and we communicate and discuss pricing, next steps, etc. and then she decides to book me. My next steps were to:
This process is tedious, but it will allow you to take care of what you need if you can’t swing paying for Honeybook. But let me tell you, the $20 a month is worth it. You don’t have to pay for docusign, spend all the extra time getting invoices ready, sending questionnaires from google forms, etc.
You’ll thank me later 😉
Honeybook has saved me hours of work
This process could be much more efficient. Steps 1-3 and 5-8 are automatically done with Honeybook. I also don’t have to tell it to deposit money into my account, it just does it.
Rather than manually tracking my expenses and income, I decided to have someone else do it. I opened a checking account just for my business so it is easier to track everything.
I use Quickbooks Self-Employed and it costs $5.00 a month. I love it. I can just send my CPA the documents at the end of the year and Quickbooks will send your quarterly taxes to the IRS for you once you set that up.
Honeybook will automatically send your money to your account and you can set up invoices there rather than going to PayPal and making one, then transferring it from PayPal to your checking.
Can you say annoying? Thank goodness for Honeybook.
Want to know what I did before this? A PAINFUL PROCESS. I would manually type everything into an excel sheet after every single purchase or payment to me.
Below is how I used to track all the cash in (income) and cash out (expenses):
Moving to Honeybook and Quickbooks has saved me hours and hours of work per client and also eliminates the possibility of double booking, missing payments, expenses and making for a bad experience for my couple. I mean how annoying would it be to get four different emails from your photographer? (Well that was me and no one has complained, but still!) I am all about making the best user experience possible.
I certainly hope that helped you out and if you are interested in Honeybook, you can use my code and get half off your first year. Check it out here: http://share.honeybook.com/casi697
I am super interested to know what you think about this system or what system you might have. What other things do you want to know about or do you have questions about this? I would love to update this post!