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3 ways Latino small business owners can think big

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(BPT) - Small businesses are the backbone of the U.S. economy, and one of the fastest-growing groups of entrepreneurs in the U.S. is English- and Spanish-speaking Latino-owned small businesses, representing 34% growth over the past 10 years. This growth trend isn't stopping anytime soon. New research from QuickBooks shows that up to four million Latino workers in the U.S. are considering starting a business this year.

To stay ahead and invest in the future of their "negocito," entrepreneurs should run their small businesses with a big business mindset. If you're a Latino business owner with big dreams, check out these three tips to help you grow your small business.

1. Track expenses and cash flow

To run a successful business — and eventually grow it — you'll need to be familiar with managing business finances, such as invoicing, getting paid, paying bills and managing taxes. These financial tasks can be challenging for any business owner, but 74% of Latino-owned businesses reported challenges with business-related finances.

To help you track your expenses, monitor your cashflow and streamline financial tasks, try QuickBooks. Using this one easy program, you can connect all your business accounts and manage your business operations end-to-end — from tracking and managing expenses, to accepting payments and even predicting your cash flow 90 days out. This can help you make sure you have enough money to cover your bills and plan for business expansions and future projects.

2. Embrace digital

Creating an online presence and accessing digital tools — like online financial software, social media platforms and online stores — have never been easier and Latino business owners have taken note. About 86% of Latino entrepreneurs believe the internet and digital technology, life software and e-commerce are making it easier to start businesses, and 77% plan to use e-commerce from day one.

How is digital technology simplifying starting a business? According to survey respondents, digital tools make it easier to find customers, access business management tools, get business advice, lower startup costs and remove language barriers.

Latino business owners can run their small businesses like the pros do and, more importantly, grow their business when the time is right.

“Right when we started Gaspachos, I knew that I wanted to invest in digital tools to help me manage my business. We began leveraging QuickBooks to manage our books, and soon were able to get a clear picture that we were profitable and growing, which allowed us to make the big jump from events/catering to securing a brick-and-mortar location. This was an important move to provide our community with healthier options and new job opportunities,” said Julio Ortiz, CEO and President of Gaspachos.

3. Get funding to grow your business

To grow a small business, owners need funding. However, borrowing capital for Latino small business owners can be difficult. According to the survey, only 45% of Latino business owners have applied for funding and of those who have, 61% of applicants were rejected. As a result, many must use personal savings or borrow money from friends and family, limiting growth.

Just like with other areas of business, online tools are making it easier for Latino entrepreneurs. Using QuickBooks Capital, small business owners can apply for a business loan and get funded fast. Nearly 60% of the customers who have used QuickBooks Capital wouldn't have qualified for a loan elsewhere, and those who applied experienced a three-time increase in approval rates.

Whether you already have a small business or are thinking of starting one, you should know how to grow your business when the time comes. Using these three tips, you can easily grow your "negocito" into a "negociote."

To learn more about digital tools that can help you manage and grow your small business, visit QuickBooks.com/Ote.