Probably one of the most common worries for small businesses is how to improve cash flow – therefore increasing revenue and setting up for overall success down the road. But how can businesses conquer the cash flow challenge once and for all?

We’re sharing four basic tips that can help you optimize cash flow for better business.

  1. Gain awareness through forecasting

Having a good understanding of your financial position – and especially your cash flow – can make a huge difference in managing your business day-to-day, as well as how you approach the future. The initial start can be intimidating, but it will help in the long run to find out how much you know about your business, the market, and other factors that influence the numbers. A projection spreadsheet is a helpful tool to get you started.

  1. Analyze and improve your billing system

Billing can be simple. But for many small business owners, billing doesn’t feel simple when their customers aren’t paying in a timely manner and are frequently falling way past due. With a flexible payment acceptance platform, you can ease the pain of billing – and offer your customers a better experience. Get paid faster and collect credit card and e-check payments online, over-the-phone, in person with desktop or mobile Point-of-Sale, or with recurring billing and invoicing.

  1. Ace accounts payable and receivable management

For service-based businesses, it can be hard to keep up with whom, how much, and for what you owe. If you push off resolving your accounts payable, your relationships with vendors might suffer and you could cost yourself more administrative time in clearing out these payments. Save yourself stress and time by streamlining your accounts payable and receivable.

For accounts payable, ensure that you’re managing the ins and outs daily, establish a consistent workflow, and break down expenses to uncover opportunities. And for accounts receivable, managing your invoices is important to being in control of your cash flow. It pays – literally – to get organized and implement features like custom payment collections and recurring billing.

  1. Keep cash flow visible

No matter what your business, visibility is key to keep things flowing smoothly, gain a better handle on your business, and grow it steadily. Once you’ve spent time building your forecast and gaining a handle on accounts, keep your information updated with the appropriate software. You will want to keep track of how many outstanding invoices you have, what has settled in your account and how that compares month-over-month and year-over-year. With business intelligence reporting, you can not only gain visibility into customer purchasing habits, but also reduce cash flow difficulties.

Tackle cash flow challenges through integrated technologies

With small businesses on the rise in 2017, business owners are adapting to the times and taking advantage of tools and technologies available more than ever to manage cash flow and increase revenue in a smart and efficient way. By implementing the right resources that are customized for service-based businesses, you’ll not only continue to cater to customer needs, but also effectively scale and grow.