Digital tools can help you streamline processes, spend less time on administration and concentrate on areas that will improve your cash flow position.
Keeping good records ensures you have the right information to meet your obligations, avoid mistakes, and better assess the financial health of your business.
Getting advice from trusted sources means you can focus on your core business.
Findings from our small business random enquiry program show that most small businesses are trying to report correctly, but sometimes make mistakes.
Developing good business habits helps you:
- correctly report all the business income you receive in your tax return
- know which expenses you're entitled to claim, and correctly allocate business and private expenses
- lodge your business activity statements (BAS) online
- know what you need to record and report for tax incentives or government stimulus payments your business receives
- understand the tax implications of taking money out of your business for your own use
- manage your tax and super obligations and prove your claims.
Using digital tools can increase the efficiency of your systems, products and services.
Digital tools can help:
- track and streamline processes
- manage customer data and employee records
- reduce overhead costs
- support business growth
- easily assess your financial position
- apply for COVID stimulus payments.
While some digital tools have an upfront or ongoing cost, there are low-cost options available, and some costs can be claimed as a tax deduction.
Learn more at:
- Understand the benefits of going digitalExternal Link
- ATO Online services – sole traders can manage activity statements and PAYG instalments, manage accounts, make payment arrangements and more
- Online services for business – available to all businesses to prepare and lodge activity statements and annual reports, manage accounts and update registration details.
Claiming a tax deduction for digital product expenses for your business
You can generally claim a tax deduction for the cost of digital products used in running your business.
You may be able to claim the cost as a general business deduction or as a depreciation deduction.
You can only claim a deduction for the business portion of your expenses. Digital product expenses you can claim include:
- the cost of hardware and software that you buy outright
- lease or subscription fees
- the cost of cloud storage, file-sharing services, internet service provider fees and running a commercial website (for example, site maintenance and content updates).
There are a range of temporary incentives which allow eligible businesses an immediate deduction for depreciating assets:
- Temporary full expensing
- Instant asset write-off for eligible businesses
- Backing business investment – accelerated depreciation
- General depreciation rules – capital allowances
- Interaction of tax depreciation incentives
- Depreciation and capital expenses and allowances
Keeping accurate and complete records will help your business's viability and meet your obligations.
We have a range of tools to help you:
- Record keeping for business – how to stay on top of your tax, super and employer obligations
- Record keeping evaluation tool – a simple tool to help you assess how well you are keeping your business records
- Selling or closing your business – records – find out what you need to record when you sell or close your business
- Business.gov.au events and trainingExternal Link – includes an 'Introduction to business records' webinar for small business start-ups.
Stay in touch with trusted sources of advice, expertise and support to help your business navigate change and uncertainty.
The ATO and your trusted tax practitioner can help your business meet its tax and super obligations. See:
- Supporting your small business – to help you get your tax and super right
- Tax support for small business – if your business is experiencing financial difficulties.
There are also organisations that provide information and services:
- Registered tax or BAS agentsExternal Link – check to see if your agent is registered or find a registered agent to help you with your tax and super affairs
- Council of Small Business Organisations AustraliaExternal Link – represents the interests of small business
- Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise OmbudsmanExternal Link – helps small businesses and family enterprises grow and thrive, and provides the free My Business Health support tool
- State Small Business Commissioners help small businesses deal with disputes in
Use our range of online tools to help you get your tax and super obligations right:
- Employee or contractor – find out if your worker is an employee or contractor
- Small Business Superannuation Clearing House – check if you're eligible to use the clearing house
- Superannuation guarantee charge statement and calculator tool – how much super you need to pay if you haven't paid your super contributions on time
- Calculators and tools – to help you run your business
- Small Business Tax Time Toolkit – practical information and fact sheets to help your business throughout the year
- Income and deductions for business – income you need to declare and deductions you can claim
- Taking on an employee checklist – what to consider when you take on an employee
- ABN LookupExternal Link – check that businesses you deal with have an active ABN and whether they're registered for GST
- Small business litigation funding – for eligible small businesses.
See our range of learning resources to help you develop the right habits for running your business:
- Small business webinars – such as GST, activity statements, income tax deductions, home-based business, record keeping and more
- atoTVExternal Link – a wide range of short videos about tax and super
- ATO podcast - Tax inVoice – listen to the latest tax and super information
- PAYG withholding – find out if you need to register for PAYG withholding, what your withholding obligations are, how much tax to withhold, and more
- PAYG instalments – find out if you can voluntarily enter PAYG instalments and reduce the tax you may need to pay at the end of the year
- Super for employers – everything you need to know about paying super for your workers
- Cash Flow Coaching Kit – talk to your tax or business adviser about developing sustainable cash flow strategies using the digital Cash Flow Coaching Kit
- Small business showcaseExternal Link – resources on workplace laws and information for small business owners
- Business.gov.auExternal Link – the government's one-stop shop, including how to plan, start and run your business, and support for businesses impacted by COVID-19.
We have more help, support and services for your small business:
- Small business newsroom – subscribe to get the latest tax and super news, delivered straight into your email inbox
- Contact us – for enquiries such as account balances, business registrations, business tax preparation and BAS, from 8:00 am and 6:00 pm Monday to Friday local time (except public holidays).
- Support for small business – for small businesses experiencing stress.
Authorised by the Australian Government, CanberraSimple habits – like using digital tools, getting advice and keeping good records – help your business to stay on track.