I started my online retail business at the beginning of this year, and things have been going pretty well so far. I'm mostly still dropshipping at the moment, because I don't yet have the capital to make large wholesale purchases to stock and ship myself (and because I'm currently traveling abroad, so I wouldn't have access to my stock at home anyway). Either way, though, my profits are almost to the price point of the salary that I lost when I was laid off earlier this year (hooray for the American economy!).
So here's the issue. When I first started, I began bookkeeping with just Excel--I record the sale date, item ID, buyer's name/ID and email, sale price, my wholesale cost, shipping price, related fees (Paypal, eBay, Google Checkout, etc.), and tracking information once it's been received from my suppliers. I use a few simple Excel formulas in my spreadsheets to calculate my total profit (sale price plus shipping minus my wholesale price, fees, refunds, etc.). This has worked fine up to this point, but my sales volumes are increasing, and I'm starting to look for a better solution.
My question is this: what software are you guys using? I'd like to find something with a little more power than Excel. Here are some features that would be nice:
- Ability to record item IDs in with their related properties (price, shipping price, supplier name; things like that) so that I don't have to enter them individually each and every time.
- Ability to record tracking information from UPS/FedEx, and if possible, ability to automatically check those tracking numbers online within the program and display whether the package has been delivered, if there are delivery exceptions, etc.
- Ability to calculate total profit per week/month/year period--currently I have to do this manually in Excel, or break weeks/months out into separate spreadsheets, which is just kind of a hassle.
- Ability to create custom invoices and email them to buyers.
- Ability to calculate sales tax per month based on the state that items are shipped to.
I currently have access to QuickBooks Pro, and have started a training course to try to determine whether it is a good fit for me. My hunch, though, is that it may be a little bit over the top--my business is a sole proprietorship with no employees, no payroll, etc. It's just me, and I just need something to keep a good record of sales for tax purposes and for my own peace of mind. I may find that to be an inaccurate assumption as I learn more about the program, but that's just my first impression.
Anyhow, forgive me for being long-winded! What software do you all use or recommend? Don't let price be an issue; I'm looking for an education here.