How to Become a Self-Employed Bookkeeper | Start a Bookkeeping Business in 2023

Are you looking for a way to start your own business and become self-employed? Consider becoming a bookkeeper – it’s a great way to gain financial independence and has more control over your career. As a bookkeeper, you’ll be responsible for managing financial information, preparing reports, and offering advice to businesses or individuals on how best to manage their finances.
Becoming a successful self-employed bookkeeper requires dedication, education, the right resources, and some hard work. But with the right approach, you can turn your bookkeeping skills into a lucrative business. In this article, we’ll discuss how to become a self-employed bookkeeper in eight steps.
Self-Employed Bookkeeper
Self-Employed Bookkeeper

Table of Contents

How to Become a Self-Employed Bookkeeper in 8 Steps

  1. Assess your qualifications and get certified by an accredited organization.
  2. Build a portfolio to showcase your work to get potential clients.
  3. Choose digital tools to manage work proficiently.
  4. Research the local market and develop a business plan.
  5. Create an effective marketing strategy.
  6. Choose an industry and find clients.
  7. Setting your pricing and offering services.
  8. Establish yourself as an expert in the bookkeeping field.
Self-Employed Bookkeeper Do
Self-Employed Bookkeeper

What Does a Self-Employed Bookkeeper Do?

A self-employed bookkeeper is responsible for all financial aspects of a business. They ensure that the books are up-to-date and accurately reflect the financial position of the company. This includes keeping track of invoices, payments, income, and expenses, as well as making sure taxes are paid on time, etc.
They also reconcile bank statements and prepare financial statements for management. Also, they might be tasked with helping to set up budgets and track cash flow. They must have excellent organizational skills and an eye for detail to do their job properly. They must also stay up to date on changing laws and regulations regarding finances so that their clients remain compliant.

8 Dos to Become a Self-Employed Bookkeeper

If you are looking to become a self-employed bookkeeper, there are seven dos that you should consider.

Assess Your Qualifications And Get Certified by an Accredited Organization:

Assess Your Qualifications And Get Certified

It’s important to assess your qualifications and determine if you have the skills and knowledge necessary to succeed as a self-employed bookkeeper. Here are some qualifications that can help become a self-employed bookkeeper:
  • A basic understanding of accounting principles and how to use bookkeeping software. This includes having an accounting certification and knowledge of business accounting software such as QuickBooks, Sage, etc.
  • Attention to detail and strong organizational skills.
  • Ability to work independently and meet deadlines.
  • Good communication and customer service skills.
  • Knowledge of laws and regulations, such as tax laws.
  • Proficiency in computer programs such as spreadsheets etc.
  • Aptitude for math and problem-solving.
If you feel that you are lacking in any area, you can think about obtaining additional education or training to strengthen your qualifications.

Build a Portfolio to Showcase Your Work to Get Potential Clients:

Build a Portfolio

Having a portfolio of your work can be a helpful tool for attracting clients. A portfolio is a showcase of your skills, experience as an accountant, and successes. It provides potential clients with an idea of the type of work you can do.
To build a portfolio, you can gather examples of your work, such as financial reports, tax documents, tax returns, and other materials you have created as a bookkeeper. You can also include any certifications or qualifications you have obtained, as well as any positive feedback or testimonials from past clients.
You may create a digital portfolio using a website or online platform. You can create a physical portfolio that you can bring with you to meetings or interviews. Having a well-organized and professional portfolio can help demonstrate your expertise and give potential clients confidence in your abilities.

Choose Digital Tools to Manage Work Proficiently:

Digital Tools

Using digital tools can help you manage your work as a self-employed bookkeeper more efficiently and effectively. Some useful tools as below:

Accounting Software:

Programs like QuickBooks and Xero can help you manage your clients’ financial records, generate invoices, and track expenses.

Project Management Software:

Tools like Asana or Trello can help you stay organized and keep track of tasks and deadlines.

Time Tracking Software:

Programs like Toggl or Harvest can help you track the time you spend on different tasks and projects, which can help invoice clients.

Communication Tools:

Applications like Slack or Skype can help you stay in touch with clients and collaborate with team members.
By using digital tools, you can streamline your work and be more productive as a self-employed bookkeeper. It’s a good idea to research and compare different options to find the tools that best meet your needs.

Research The Local Market And Develop a Business Plan:

Research The Local Market And Develop a Business Plan

Before starting your bookkeeping business, it’s important to research the local market to understand the demand for your services. You can do this by:

Identifying Potential Clients:

Consider the types of businesses or organizations that may need bookkeeping services, such as small businesses, non-profits, or solo entrepreneurs.

Determining Your Target Market:

Consider the size of the businesses you want to work with and their industry. You may want to specialize in a particular area, such as working with e-commerce businesses or non-profits.

Evaluating Your Competition:

Research other bookkeeping businesses in your area to understand the level of competition and identify any gaps in the market that you can fill.
Once you have a good understanding of the local market, you can develop a new business plan that outlines your goals, target market, services, and marketing strategy. A detailed business plan can help you stay focused and on track as you start and grow your bookkeeping business.

Create an Effective Marketing Strategy:

Create an Effective Marketing Strategy

Marketing is an important aspect to run any business successfully. Here are some tricks for creating an effective marketing strategy:

Define Your Target Market:

Knowing who you want to reach will help you to get success in your marketing efforts.

Identify Your Unique Value Proposition:

What makes you different from other bookkeepers in the area? This could be your expertise in a particular industry, your use of advanced technology, or your exceptional customer service.

Utilize Online Marketing:

Create a professional niche-based website and consider using social media platforms, such as LinkedIn, to promote your business.

Network And Make Connections:

Attend local events and join professional organizations to meet potential clients and get your name out there.

Offer Incentives:

Consider discounted offers or promotions to attract new clients.
By following these tips, you can create a marketing strategy that helps you attract and retain clients for your bookkeeping business.

Choose an Industry And Find Clients:

Choose an Industry And Find Clients

Choosing an industry to specialize in can help find clients. By specializing in a particular industry, you can demonstrate your expertise and become a trusted resource for businesses in that industry.

To find clients in a particular industry, you can:

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Research Industry And Professional Associations:

These organizations often have directories of businesses in their industry, which can be a good place to start your search.

Attend Industry Events And Conferences:

These events can be a great way to make connections and meet small business owners.

Use Online Platforms:

LinkedIn, for example, allows you to search for companies in a specific industry and connect with professionals in that field.
By focusing on a specific industry, you can build a reputation as an expert and increase your chances of finding clients in that field.

Setting Your Pricing And Offering Bookkeeping Services:

Setting Your Pricing And Offering Bookkeeping Services

Setting your pricing will depend on factors such as your level of experience, the complexity of the work, and the location of your business. Here are some points to consider when setting your pricing model:

Determine Your Hourly Rate:

Consider factors such as your education and experience, the level of demand for your services, and the going rates for bookkeeping services in your area.

Offer Different Pricing Options:

You may want to offer different pricing options based on the type of work you are doing. For example, you could offer a lower rate for basic bookkeeping tasks and a higher rate for more complex projects.

Be Transparent:

Communicate your pricing to clients, so they know what to expect.

Don’t be Afraid to Negotiate:

If a client is interested in your services but is hesitant about the price, be open to negotiating a rate that works for both parties.
By setting your pricing carefully and offering a range of services, you can attract different levels of clients and build a successful business.

Establish Yourself as an Expert in The Field:

Establish Yourself as an Expert in The Field

Establishing yourself as an expert in the field can help you attract important clients. Here are some ways you can establish yourself as an expert:

Obtain Certifications:

Consider obtaining certifications, such as the Certified Bookkeeper (CB) designation offered by the American Institute of Professional Bookkeepers (AIPB), to demonstrate your expertise.

Stay up to date:

Keep abreast of developments in the bookkeeping industry, such as changes in tax laws, and stay current with new technologies and techniques.

Share Your Knowledge:

Consider writing articles or blog posts, giving presentations, or teaching workshops to share your knowledge with others.


Attend industry events and join professional organizations to connect with other bookkeepers and build your network.
By taking steps to establish yourself as an expert in the field, you can differentiate yourself from other bookkeepers and demonstrate your value to the potential business owner.
Following these dos will help ensure success in becoming a self-employed bookkeeper.

What Qualifications Are Needed For Bookkeeping Service?

Qualifications For Bookkeeping

Bookkeeping is an important part of any business and requires individuals with strong financial skills. To become a bookkeeper, one must have a minimum of a high school diploma or equivalent. An associate’s degree in accounting or business administration is also beneficial.
Bookkeepers must possess strong knowledge of accounting principles and the ability to manage financial accounts. They should also be proficient in using various software programs such as QuickBooks, Excel, and Sage (Peachtree). Furthermore, they should be organized, oriented, and able to handle multiple tasks at once while maintaining accuracy and timeliness.

What Skill Do You Need to Grow Your Business as a Self-Employed Bookkeeper?

Skills For Bookkeeping

To become a self-employed bookkeeper, you need to possess several key skills.
  • You should have excellent math and accounting knowledge.
  • You will be responsible for financial analysis, budgeting, and creating financial reports for your clients, so having a strong understanding of numbers is essential.
  • You should have strong organizational skills to process data efficiently and accurately.
  • Communication skills are also important since you will be dealing with clients daily.
  • You must be able to explain complex data in an easy-to-understand way.
  • Computer proficiency is necessary as most of the work will likely be done on a computer or other electronic device.
With these skills in hand, you can start your journey. As you continue to work, your experience will increase, and you will learn new things. Again, you can use the new experience in your work to make your delivery more efficient.

The Necessity of Self-Employed Bookkeeping Template and Accounting Software

Bookkeeping is an essential requirement to run a successful business. It is important to keep accurate records of income and business expenses, including payroll, etc. A bookkeeper uses various templates or software to streamline his/her process and make it easier to stay organized.
Bookkeeping Template and Software
  • This type of template or software can provide the ability to enter financial transactions quickly and easily.
  • Produce reports on your finances.
  • Track accounts receivable and payable in one place.
Also, many templates or software come with tutorials that can help you understand the basics of bookkeeping so you can better manage your finances. By investing in templates or software, you’ll be equipping yourself with the tools necessary for staying organized and financially responsible.

How to Become a Self-Employed Bookkeeper With No Experience?

Becoming a self-employed bookkeeper with no experience may seem daunting. But, it is also possible if the right steps are taken.
The first step is to gain knowledge of bookkeeping through an online course or in-person training program. This will give you a basic understanding of finance, accounting principles, and different types of software used for record-keeping and financial analysis.
Bookkeeper With No Experience
Once you have obtained this knowledge, you must create a business plan that outlines your services and target market. This plan should include what services you offer, pricing structure, marketing strategy, and how you intend to manage customers’ accounts.
The second step is to build your network and find potential customers by attending local networking events or joining relevant professional organizations. Utilizing social media platforms like LinkedIn can also help you connect with potential clients quickly and easily.
With dedication and perseverance, anyone can become a successful self-employed bookkeeper with no experience.

How to Register Your Business Name in the Bookkeeping Niche?

Registering your bookkeeping business is a great way to ensure that your business is legitimate and protected. Before you begin, here is a workflow that will make it easier for your work:
Register in the Bookkeeping

Determine The Business Structure:

There are several options to choose what the structure will be. Among these are:
  • Sole proprietorship.
  • Partnership.
  • Limited liability company (LLC)
  • Corporation
Each type has its own advantages and disadvantages, so it is important to research and choose the one that is right for your business.

Choose a Business Name:

You will need to choose a business name as a trademark that is unique and reflects your brand and work.

Obtain Necessary Licenses And Permits:

Depending on your location, you may need to obtain specific licenses or permit to operate your firm. This may include a business license, sales tax permit, and any other licenses or permits required by your state or local government.

Register Your Business With The Government:

You will need to register with the government to obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN) and file taxes. You can do this online through the IRS website or by filling out the appropriate forms.

Set up a System:

To manage your finances effectively, you will need to set up a system that works for your business.

Get Insurance:

It is essential to protect your business with the appropriate insurance coverage. This may include liability insurance, business interruption insurance, and any other coverage relevant to your business.

How to Start a Bookkeeping Business Plan at Home?

Starting a bookkeeping business at home is an excellent way to earn extra income and gain financial independence.
To get the necessary certifications and licenses required in your area. You should also become familiar with the accounting software you plan to use. Once you have the necessary qualifications, create a detailed business plan outlining your services, pricing structure, target market, and marketing strategies.
Then, set up a website and social media accounts to promote your business and start networking with potential clients.
Finally, create a system for managing customer information, invoices, payments, and other important documents.

Is it Hard to Get Clients as a Bookkeeper?

As a bookkeeper, it can be hard to get clients, especially if you are just starting. You may have the skills and qualifications needed to do the job, but clients need to know that they can trust you with their financial information. That’s why it is important to build relationships with your potential clients and demonstrate your knowledge of the industry.
Bookkeeping Clients
Networking events and business forums can be a great way to meet people who may be interested in hiring you as their bookkeeper. An online presence through social media or a website can help showcase your skills and demonstrate your expertise in the field. With your hard work and some luck, getting clients as a bookkeeper can become easier.

How Much Should I Charge as an Independent Bookkeeper?

When determining how much to charge as an independent bookkeeper, it is important to analyze your experience, the type of services you are offering, and the amount of time it will take.
 Research the market rate in your area and be sure to consider any additional expenses that may be associated with the job such as travel or software costs. It is also important to consider your overhead costs such as insurance and office supplies.
Charges for Bookkeeping
When deciding on a rate, you should make sure that it is fair and reflects the value you bring to the table. This can help ensure that clients are satisfied with your product or services as well as ensure that you are adequately compensated for them.
However, the rate depends on your client’s income and the work involved for the particular firm. Monthly charges can be roughly 3 % of your client’s gross income. On the other hand, it can be said that as a newbie you can charge an hourly 10 to 11 dollars, and after a good experience, it can be like 25 dollars.

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Conclusion: Step to Start Bookkeeping Business in 2023

Starting a bookkeeping business in 2023 can be a good opportunity. But, it is natural to come to this question in your mind how to become a self-employed Bookkeeper and what to follow?
To get started, it’s important to obtain the necessary education and training, consider getting certified, and build your business by networking and marketing your services.
Setting your rates and staying up to date on industry developments and changes in tax laws will also be key to your success. By following these steps, you can become a successful bookkeeper in 2023 and beyond.


Q1. Do You Need a License to be a Self-Employed Bookkeeper?

In most cases, you do not need a license to be a self-employed bookkeeper. However, some states may have specific requirements, such as obtaining a business license or being registered as a tax preparer. Check with your state or local government to fulfill their requirements. Certified Bookkeeper (CB) offered by the American Institute of Professional Bookkeepers (AIPB) increased credibility.

Q2. How do You Start Being a Bookkeeper?

Becoming a bookkeeper is a great career choice for those who enjoy working with numbers. To get started, you’ll need to have a basic understanding of accounting principles and procedures. You should also be proficient in using computer software such as Microsoft Excel and QuickBooks. It’s also helpful to have experience with financial reporting and record keeping. Once you have the necessary skills, you can look for entry-level positions or pursue certification through organizations like the American Institute of Professional Bookkeepers.

Q3. How Much Does a Self-Employed Bookkeeper Earn?

The earnings of a self-employed bookkeeper can vary widely based on factors such as level of experience, the complexity of the work, and the location of the business. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median hourly wage for bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks was $21.9 in May 2021. Self-employed bookkeepers may also have the opportunity to earn more by charging higher rates for their services.

Hi I am Chandana, a village girl after passing B.Sc I came to city and also worked in college for some time but now I am fully house wife taking care of kids and writing this blog. Ever since I learned graphic design, I became interested in the world of electronics media. I hope this blog will give you pleasure for learning and learning and sharing it with everyone.

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