Episode 188 Featuring Connor Curlewis

How Managing Your Numbers Can Help You Grow Your Business

How Managing Your Numbers Can Help You Grow Your Business

In this episode, we are joined by Melissa Williams, Head of Content, and Polly Sidoruk, Head of Customer Service, at Synder, a robust accounting platform that automates a significant part of finance management, providing accurate, fast bookkeeping and reporting for businesses. Listen to know more how Synder can help your ecommerce business!


What is Synder and how it started

Melissa Williams: Synder, we are automation software for accounting. We primarily work with e-commerce brands. We have various products in Synder. We have Synder sync, which is the product that takes all of your sales from say, Amazon Shopify you know, your payment platform, Stripe after pay.

And takes all of those transactions, including fees and puts it all into it could be either your QuickBooks account online or desktop or your zero account. Or we also have cinder books, which is our own kind of standalone accounting platform. So it just helps to get rid of all that manual data entry, the potential for, you know, transposing a number or, you know, waiting until tax season to enter transactions, which we do see happen quite a bit.

It just makes it really quick and easy. Once you set everything up. I mean, it takes about 15 minutes to like click through and set up everything and then it'll just run automatically in the background. You, you can go in and see your numbers as they're happening. It's like within the hour, it's pulling transactions.

So you always know where you stand financially. And then we have our. Send insights, which is our new product we're super excited about. So this is taking all of that data. That's pulling from all the platforms and creating actionable reports. You can use for KPIs, metrics to really teach you your numbers.

And so you have one source of truth to really understand what's going on in your business. So it'll pull together reports like, you know, new versus returning customers. You can see which products are selling together, you know, so you could consider product bundles, really just getting in depth. So our, our theory is, you know, numbers are very important and can be really exciting when you know what your numbers are and what to do with them to grow your business.

Polly Sidoruk: So like circling back, you know, having multiple products on the way we kind of launched them one after another. Really gets us back to this, you know, feeling of startup because you know, every new product is technically, you know, a startup, which you try to kind of develop. So that also helps to kind of maintain this corporate culture of doing everything quickly and doing a lot of steps sometimes simultaneously.

And as Melissa mentioned, so we're in financial technology sphere. So we were here for like five plus years already, even more, but like doing our own products, it's like about five years. And so it's all about, I mean, automation of, of data entry and now with our risk and center insights also about understanding your business better because well, gathering of the numbers, understanding what these or that, you know, figure means, you know, that's challenging depending on your business background.

So if you're starting, if you're already running your business for a year. So all of this kind of people on different stages have really different understanding of what they should or shouldn't be tracking what KPIs, I mean, what their goals should be. So we wanna help with that as well on top of just, you know, automating and saving your time. So just say, we'll save your time on data entry. so that you were able to kind of look at your numbers and make better decisions.

Connor: I understand that Synder like accounting for eCommerce specifically. I kind of wanna know the history of the company and how it positioned itself to be different from these big players in the world and how you kind of look forward to growing in the future.

Polly Sidoruk: Yeah, we kind of look at ourselves and seeing ourselves playing in the team with these big players, because we originally started with like QuickBooks marketplace. We were just were one of the apps there that told, you know, integrate your Stripe to QuickBooks or PayPal to QuickBooks. So that was kind of the very beginning of the story.

Like prior to that, we had another product even like doing even a simpler task, like importing your Excel to QuickBooks. So it was the very, you know, beginning prior to that, our CEO development outsource outsourcing development. So he was like doing projects for different businesses. And then kind of one of the businesses, you know, ordered a project connected to QuickBooks and our CEO learned about QuickBooks and learned the pain points around it.

And kind of, this is how we all started and we started having apps. That work complimentary with QuickBooks and helping achieve this or that task quicker in a more efficient way. And then kind of gradually talking to people, you know, gathering them around our apps asking their feedback, adding zero to this tech and working with. Like QuickBooks desktops. 

So working with more and more accounting platforms, helping people who work with these platforms, either accountants or business owners kind of fulfill their task. We started, you know, learning different set of needs. I'd say so surely people really want to kind of save their time on like entering data they have in their Excel to their books and they don't want, you know, spend the whole day just entering transactions manually.

So that's where you can use one of our apps, for example. But moving forward, we understood that QuickBooks or zero, they do really like great pieces of software and they really solve a lot of problems, you know, for many different industries, but to have a software that solves industry specific problems.

For example, as we do, we solve e-com specific problems. So you won't be able to kind of, you know, log into QuickBooks and kind of see, you know, what I can offer you in terms e-com they'll tell you, you know, we can do everything, just, you know, tell us what you want. So Synder this regard focuses in, you know, more adds things more specific industry, specific things.

And this is kind of where, where we're going, you know, become like becoming standalone. Is, you know, to just solve the problems of the customers that, that use users that talk to us. And as Melissa mentioned, yeah, we have a lot of ecom businesses. As you know, once we were growing, we were adding more and more different sales channels like Shopify and Amazon and Walmart and eBay, Etsy, et cetera, et cetera.

So yeah, we just started to hear pain points of these people and started to kind of fulfill and yeah, like the need to know numbers. If you run business with, you know, five different sales channels, so you sell on eBay and Amazon, and for example, you have Shopify and you have multiple payment processors linked to, you know, several of these e-com sales channels.

You kind of wanna have everything in want place and that's where singer comes into play it. And it will kind of import your data to QuickBooks or to any other accounting software supported automatically. And it will also give you like a dashboard combined dashboard, you know, with numbers from all, you know, several of your payment aid ways so that you don't have to log into, each one and see, okay, so here, my sales for Amazon here are my sales for Shopify.

Why do I have combined how my Shopify payment processors I do are doing maybe I'm paying high commission. The processor that really, you know, brings me very, very little revenue. So all of this thinks, I mean, Synder will be able to help you answer all of these questions.

Synder being focused on human-centered content

Connor: So let's circle back to the beginning of this conversation. I know that Synder like big on human centered. Not just interpersonal inside your company, but also like human centered content. So can you guys tell me a bit about that? 

Melissa Williams: Yeah, so like as far as the human centered content, so it's definitely like everything we do kind of has this like human approach. So we always, you know, we have machine accuracy, human approach is kind how we, we word it. So when it comes to content, our team is really focused on educational content, helping people, not just center in their day to day lives, but also understand really the things that can take their business to the next level.

So we've got content coming out really soon on like unit economics. We have an expert that we have interviewed and we've got, you know, details on what does it mean for an eCommerce business to, to understand this concept and like, what do you do with it? How can you grow your business? What reports do you need to be looking at and why.

Even like within the app itself. If you go to like sit insights and you open up any report, there's an article there's like a little on the side, there's like a little quick overview of what are you looking at? Why does it matter? What can you do with it? And then there's a link to click to get to an, even more in depth article on that.

So we're very big on educating people, helping to empower them, to grow their businesses and, you know, understand the why behind the numbers. It's like, you know, sometimes one of the things that we talk to eCommerce business owners a lot about are things like cogs. It was interesting to us to hear from some of the people we've talked to, like a lot of people just don't know these numbers and that just leaves you in kind of a vulnerable place.

I mean, I know just as a former e-commerce business owner, myself, if someone had asked me at the height of my business, what are your cogs? I would've just stared blankly and not known. And that ended up being part of the reason why I no longer am an eCommerce business owner. So. I think just really helping people, you know, this is their passion, something they really love, and we give them the tools, you know, to, to understand and grow it so that they, you know, can continue.

Connor: Yeah. I think that's like a trend that I see a lot when I interview software companies is like the old school way was features benefits. I'm gonna sell you this. Now it's like what's going on. Like let's have a conversation about it. And yeah, I think that's really good that you guys are following that. 

But the blockchain, what do you guys think about smart contracts? And are you worried about maybe a less human more automated approach? I know that you just said that you like to have up to speed computers doing the back end and then you try and humanize it.

Polly Sidoruk: I think the level, I mean, the extent, you know, to which you can automate some communications with your customers, you know, for any business, it really depends heavily on like the specifics of your business.

So if you're well, again, I like pizza. So if you order a pizza, you for sure know that a customer, you know, that comes to your website wants to order pizza. So you really, once they start chatting, for example, like a bot on your website, you know, the bot can, can ask, you know, what's the address, you know, what's kind of pizza do you want? 

So you pretty know what the conversation will be about. So it's pretty easy to automate, especially using all of those, you know, like big data things that really help to even build this conversation. Not really like robotic, but you know, some kind of a human way. So it's really nice to have, and you know, why not?

So maybe, you know, give your customers the option to, instead of chatting with someone. I mean, not everyone likes, you know, having conversations, even in the chat or over the phone. Yeah. People who really want, I really wanna come and place my order and just, you know, just grab it next to my door. That's it.

I don't want any, you know, conversations. So for some, you know, for some people, for some businesses, it's like a really, really good way to kind of give both options to you. That's the automated bot. You can just come in and, you know, give us all the details and the bot will do the rest. And the other options, just, you know, wanna talk to us here.

We are, you know, like in one click, so, and then you connect to, to live person. But you know, when, when we are talking about accounting, that's a whole new, you know, other story because accounting is, is not simple. There are a lot of companies who really wanna simplify it, make it easier, make it a breeze, but that's a lot, you know, a lot of things to be you know, considerate a lot of things to be learned so that business can run their accounting correctly. 

And the center is one of accounting apps is, is really, it's really hard to automate some things. I mean, in terms of communication with our customers just because every business has, you know, its own way of writing their books, you may think that's ridiculous, that's accounting, you know, it should have its laws and everything.

But the truth is that if you talk to 10 accountants, you may receive five different answers on how, you know, what's the best way of doing things. Even if, without maybe telling them the specifics so that they really have a good ground to give you the same answer. But you know, there are just different, different, you know, ways to many different ways to do the same thing in accounting.

That's the beauty of the account because there are 10 different ways how we account for the same transaction, depending on your needs and the needs of your business and the way you wanna, you know, things you wanna prepare your books so just tax reporting is one thing, for example, going through audit to sell your company's, you know, totally other story.

So a lot of things maybe, you know, may variety, which is why accounting software should be set up in a very different ways and talking about automation. Send automates, you know, connects like 10 different platforms in one ecosystem and that's also like a funny thing, but I would say like, I won't say like 90, but I'd say like at least 60% of people do not use the, all the fields and kind of things in, for example, Shopify or Amazon or any platform they use, you know, the way this field should be used.

So they use it the way, you know, it's convenient to their business and maybe, you know, they, they put. Like a product names in the description, just because it first, you know, in some way can more convenient to them. So when, once we start to, once we start to automate these kind of flows. Really there is a high possibility that we would need to kind of configure like certain things in very, very certain way for this certain business. So that's kind of the trick. 

So you just can't tell to everyone do this and do this and you will go to success. It's like really, we have to, you know, have someone who sit with you. And that's actually the way our onboarding with Synder works. You know, once you sign up and kind of integrate many platforms, you like highly like a transactional business.

So there is, you know, a lot of pain Synder will solve you. So we have people who will kind of, even once you're on a trial, jump on the call with you and really give you a good consultation on whether sooner can or cannot solve your problem. Once you subscribe like the first, you know, several days, it's.

We'll conduct you to set up a call like a zoom call one on one with you to kind of go through your setup, go through your needs and see if you know, what was the best way to automate things and do your stuff. So there's just, I mean, for now, maybe, you know, like in no 2050, once the AI will be so really developed so that it will be able to take the decisions like, yeah, I know that this, you know, this data goes from that field and not from this as it usually does, and I need to reconfigure it in a different way. 

So unless that happens, I cannot see a good way for specifically for our company that works in accounting. To do this. I'm sorry for long answer, but it's really no, that's good. I put a lot of thought on, because I really like automation. I mean, I work in automation company. We both work with voice a really like automation, but, well, that's not always possible. 

Connor Curlewis
Connor Curlewis

Former Content Producer

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