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Become a Virtual Bookkeeper
As if working from home wasn’t already a hot topic, add a worldwide pandemic and now everyone is looking for ways to make money from home. I first started researching this idea the minute I became pregnant in April of 2009. The last thing I wanted to do was send my new baby to daycare. I wanted to be the one to spend all the time with her and witness all of her firsts.
Even though 2009 wasn’t that long ago there still wasn’t much out there on quick legit ways to make money from home. My major in school was accounting but I had no idea how to use that to help me work from home.
I wasn’t a CPA and I couldn’t afford to go back to school. The fastest way to bring in an income from home was to open my own daycare. My mom ran one out of our home for 20 years so it was nothing new to me.
Although, as you can imagine, caring for 6-10 kids alone in your home all day is quite exhausting. I knew it wasn’t my calling so I was always on the lookout for other ways to make money from home. Eventually, I found blogging was the best fit for me. However, I really struggled with my niche so I just picked “how to start a blog” like there aren’t enough of those out there.
Fast forward to 2018 when my mom asked me to help her with her QuickBooks for her new business. She opened a convenience store and didn’t have time to do it herself. Again, with my background in accounting and my nerdy love for numbers, I realized this may just be my calling!
How to Become a Virtual Bookkeeper
I started researching how to become a virtual bookkeeper and one person and one course stood out. It was obvious this Ben Robinson guy was good at what he did. So many blogs pointed toward his Bookkeeper Business Launch course.
Ben offers three free training videos to help you decide if bookkeeping is right for you. I watched all of those in one night.
Then after spending about 10 days really thinking it over I finally jumped and signed up for the course. There was a 30-day money-back guarantee so I thought that gives me more time to decide if this is right for me.
What is in the Bookkeeper’s Business Launch course?
This course is well worth its price tag. Ben gently takes your hand and guides you through every step of the way. He not only shares everything you need to know to be a bookkeeper but he shares everything you need to know to launch your bookkeeping business.
How Long Does it Take to Go Through the Course?
Ben says the average time to get through the course is 90 days. I could definitely see that. When I take courses I like to dive in and finish them as soon as I can. This course is very in-depth. Not overwhelming, just very in-depth. I was able to complete it in 45 days.
How Do You Get Clients?
In BBL Ben shares several different ways to find clients for your business. Now keep in mind, you have to go out and find these clients. Signing up for BBL does not come with clients. It teaches you everything you need to know to be a successful virtual bookkeeper but you have to go find your clients.
Don’t worry though, they are everywhere! The ideal client is a small business owner and those are everywhere. Ben shares great places to go and tactics to use to find your clients.
The course comes with a Facebook Group and I am always seeing people post about taking on another new client.
How Many Hours a Week Does it Take to be a Virtual Bookkeeper?
That’s the beauty, you’re the boss so you make up your own hours. If you want to make more and take on more clients then that’s up to you. If you want to just have enough to cover the mortgage so you can spend more time with your kids, that’s your choice too!
At the beginning of the course, Ben covers the average time spent working based on feedback from the Facebook Group. They said 4-6 hours a week per client. So again maybe you want only 2 clients or maybe you want 10. It is completely up to you.
How Much Can You Make as a Virtual Bookkeeper?
Once again, this is up to you. You get to set your pricing and Ben shares with you a system on how to come up with a price to charge. He doesn’t suggest an hourly rate because as you can imagine people don’t like to hear that number.
If you blurt out an hourly rate of $60-$75 an hour they will automatically think they can’t afford you. However, if you lump it all together into a monthly fee it isn’t so bad.
Just like if you were going to hire someone to mow your yard. If they tell you it’s going to be $45 per hour then you would think no way! But if they tell you it is $45 to mow your yard it’s doesn’t seem too bad. Even though it will probably take him 30-45 mins to mow your yard so he is clearly making at least $45 an hour.
So depending on how much you quote the job for is how much you can make per client. Each client is going to be different too. Some will require more work than others. Ben teaches you how to break it down per job and task. But according to the Facebook feedback, the average breakdown works out to be $70 per hour.
As a virtual bookkeeper, you are the step in between the business owner and their accountant. You will not be filing taxes, doing payroll, or any other tax-related activities. You will assist the business owner in keeping their books in order.
This may seem like it isn’t that big of a deal but it definitely is. These tasks normally fall onto the business owner. Accountants don’t want to do it, they are focusing on the taxes and business owners don’t want to do it either, they are focusing on managing their business.
So this task goes to the wayside and becomes a nightmare for the business owner come tax time when the accountant can’t file their taxes until it’s all caught up.
That is how I got my first client, my mom. She was so busy running her new business that she didn’t have the time or energy to come home and work on her QuickBooks at night.
As a small business owner, she was working 7 days a week straight and by the end of the year, she was way behind on her books.
It is more than just transaction work though. You will be helping the client manage their receipts and bank statements and you will be presenting financial statements to the client that shows how their business is doing. All this is taught in the course.
Ben does a great job explaining exactly what you need to do.
Is Bookkeeping a Dead-end Job with Computer Software and AI Taking Over?
This is a great question, and if 2020 has taught us anything so far it is to expect the unexpected.
Just because there is software out there that makes bookkeeping much more efficient does not mean that the bookkeeping profession is a dead-end job.
Someone has to know what all those numbers mean. Someone has to make sure all of those transactions go into the correct category because trust me the business owner doesn’t. And you have to know what is going on behind the scenes in QuickBooks and other software to understand what is happening on the front end.
And as I said you have to expect the unexpected. What if all software stop working. What if the internet goes down? Or what if you have clients that like things done old school? Someone has to know how to do things by hand the original way.
Software and AI make our jobs easier but they do not replace our jobs as bookkeepers. The fact is that software such as QuickBooks can be overwhelming to a client, so even with it available the client would rather someone else manage their books and understand the software.
AI can help a bookkeepers business be more efficient for their clients but it is not going to replace the bookkeeper.
Do You Have to Have a Degree to Be a Bookkeeper?
Luckily for me and maybe for you, the answer is no. I went to school for accounting but I never finished. This was great news for me. I found something I could do from home, that I enjoy, that uses my background, and that didn’t require a degree. Which means I will get paid what I am worth and not less just because I don’t have a college degree.
How Much is The Course?
The course is $2,500-$5,000 depending on which version you pick. There are three different options you can choose from and to learn more about those you can check them out here. There are also payment options as well, read below.
Are There Payment Plan Options?
Yes, there are payment plans to help you get started. This is great because then you don’t have to put as much money upfront and then once you get your first client you will easily cover that monthly payment!
Plus, of course, you can then add the course as an expense (write off) for your new bookkeeping business! *check with your CPA first*
Why Should I Pick This Course to Start a Bookkeeping Business?
The following was true as of when I took the course. Some features may have changed since 2018. I am still in the Facebook Groups and access my course often so as far as I can tell these features are still there, if anything they have improved the course even more!
- They provide you with a “Notes” section that you can use to take notes and save throughout the course with the option to print all at the end or download.
- There are options to download the audio for each video, see transcripts, turn on the closed caption, and resources under each lesson.
- Resources marked in “accounting book” to show you where to find more information and verify what they said in the video is true.
- Live Q&As you can ask and then get answers in the Facebook group. Videos are also then shared in the course quarterly.
- There is a lawyer who is present in the course as a resource.
- A free year of QuickBooks.
- A third party completion certificate and a badge are earned at the end of the course.
- They provide a video that walks you through how to navigate through the whole course.
- Systems for your business to run successfully! Which is a huge bonus!
- The course itself is easy to navigate through and they explain it all very well. There are multiple progress bars to see how far you have come.
- The course contained a lot of information but one of the first videos explains how you don’t have to complete them all to start your business which was nice to know but the other information is equally important but it can be completed after you have your first client.
- There is even a video on study hacks to make sure you are absorbing all the information correctly and not having to rewatch videos or lessons.
- They have what is called a 5-star student and after completing those stars you unlock even more bonus information.
- There are quizzes and tests to test your knowledge and earn your certificate.
Still have questions about becoming a Virtual Bookkeeper?
Check out the information page for the BBL course to learn more!
Or sign up below to receive a free download of the Bookkeeper Business Launch course syllabus!
My Personal Review of Bookkeeper Business Launch
You may be wondering how this course is different from others?
If you couldn’t tell, I loved the course! I have taken MANY courses on other topics, none quite this big, and I haven’t come across one yet that is this well rounded. The other courses (again on other topics) taught you how to get from A-B in the shortest time but that A-B was on a smaller scale. Nothing as big as becoming certified and starting your own business.
None of the courses I have taken have walked you through how to navigate the course itself. Sometimes that would be helpful! Other times it may be obvious. This time is was very helpful!
I also love how it was designed to answer any questions you could have along the way. It even provides procedures and paperwork to get your business off on the right foot after completing the course.
The price of the course can be a bit scary but again you have payment options and if you take the course serious you can start looking for your first client right away. Then you can be earning money before you are even done paying for the course!
I can’t tell you how thankful I am for this course. It has helped me make a full time income working very part time. I can work around my kids schedules and still be home for them! Best decision I made for my career!
Best of luck on your new business journey!
I would say that Suzi does an amazing job with all of her courses on how to blog as well. So I have two favorite teachers!