Alan Chen

Alan Chen is a Founding Partner of FreeCashFlow.io, a leading accounting and consulting agency based out of Los Angeles, California. FreeCashFlow.io helps online business owners keep more of their profits through tax planning, cash flow management, and more.

Alan is a licensed CPA with years of experience in the finance and accounting industries. Before starting FreeCashFlow.io, Alan worked for companies such as Ernst & Young, Riot Games, and SteelHouse.

Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:

  • Alan Chen talks about starting FreeCashFlow.io after years of being a CPA
  • Why online business owners need to care about tax planning
  • Alan explains the worst-case scenarios of submitting an incorrect tax form
  • Alan’s year-round process for working with ecommerce business owners
  • Why online business owners should consider relocating to states and countries with better tax advantages
  • Alan discusses the ins and outs of US-based tax havens
  • The common financial issues and challenges that fast-growing ecommerce brands face
  • Alan’s recent course: Tax Free eCom
  • The importance of paying attention to your taxes so you don’t lose profits

In this episode…

Why should online business owners care about their taxes? The answer is simple: you could save $50 to $100 thousand in profits every year by getting your taxes in order. As a licensed CPA, Alan Chen is here to tell you how.

With years of experience in finance and ecommerce, Alan decided to start his agency, FreeCashFlow.io, after noticing how many ecommerce brands were losing money because of their taxes. Now, he helps online business owners avoid common financial pitfalls and retain thousands of dollars every tax season. So, what are Alan’s top financial strategies for fast-growing ecommerce business owners?

On this episode of the eCommerce Profits Podcast, Joshua Chin sits down with Alan Chen, the Co-founder of FreeCashFlow.io, to discuss how you can keep more of your profits through tax planning. Together, they talk about why online business owners should care about their taxes, how to navigate the tax thresholds of different states, and the common mistakes ecommerce brands make during tax season. Stay tuned!

Resources Mentioned in this episode

Sponsor for this episode

This episode is brought to you by Chronos Agency.

If you are a direct-to-consumer ecommerce brand that wants to unlock the optimum customer lifetime value through email marketing, then look no further than Chronos Agency!

Our team of passionate email marketing experts have helped hundreds of brands generate over $70 million in return from email alone, and our clients receive an average of 3500% ROI from our efforts.

Chronos Agency has worked with a variety of brands, including Truly Beauty, Alya Skin, and many more. Our mission is to help real businesses achieve real results. 

If you want to take your revenue to the next level using email marketing, be sure to email our team at [email protected] or visit chronos.agency to learn more.

Episode Transcript

Intro 0:04

Welcome to the eCommerce Profits Podcast where we feature top founders and experts in the ecommerce industry and take an in depth look at the struggles and successes in growing ecommerce brands profitably.

Joshua Chin 0:21

Josh Chin here, I’m the host of the eCommerce Profits Podcast where we feature top experts and founders in the ecommerce industry. And we go behind the scenes of the struggles and successes in growing a brand. Now this episode is brought to you by Chronos Agency. If you run a direct to consumer ecommerce brand is ready to scale and double your customer lifetime value through retention marketing, Chronos is your company. We’ve helped hundreds of brands scale profits with email, SMS and mobile push, we’re getting an average of 3500% ROI from our efforts. We’ve worked with brands like Truly Beauty, Alive Skin, Doctor Livingood and many more. Now the next step is to email us at [email protected] Or you can go to Chronos.agency to learn more. Today’s guest is Alan Chen. Alan is a certified public accountant, and also one of the founding partners of FreeCashFlow.io, a leading accounting and consulting agency based out of Los Angeles, California, focused on helping online business owners keep more of their hard earned profits. And they do this to prop up tax planning, cash flow management, and many more. Alan, welcome to the show.

Alan Chen 1:32

Hey Josh, thank you for having me. And thank you for such a great introduction.

Joshua Chin 1:36

Awesome. So let’s get started with your background. How do you end up running an agency working with online business owners and I know you work with a lot of ecommerce business owner. So I’m curious about your background, how you ended up in this crazy world?

Alan Chen 1:52

Yeah, yeah, that’s a great question, Josh. Oh, it is a little bit crazy story. And, you know, just go back in the beginning. I’m like, like Josh says, I’m a CPA certified public accountant. You know, I have my Master’s in accountancy. And I’ve worked in a lot of I would say, you know, I was a multinational big firms, you know, and from my experience there, I actually started family, and two years ago, and then last year with COVID happening, I actually started looking into, you know, drop shipping and Shopify. And it really piqued my curiosity, because everyone was doing it. I was like, what is what is this thing you know? So, at first, I was just watching YouTube videos and look like just, you know, lurking in the forums and seeing what people were doing. But then one day, I was just like, you know what, I’m just gonna dive in and see what happens. So I kind of just did that I pick out product. My first product was this smart net massager. I call it Netflix, because I thought it was very clever. Because like Netflix and chill, right? That was my little ad, video ad that was sitting, I was like, Oh, this is gonna sell like pancakes. Right? So it did not sell like pancakes, it flopped. I think I got at most 10 sales in my first month I was doing I was like, Okay, this is not working. But I mean, with that I gain a lot of experience in ecommerce world, you know, I have to deal with the Facebook ad blocks, I’ve deal with how to talk to suppliers in China, I have to deal with like logistical nightmares, customer service, and I was like, Man, these entrepreneurs are so hard working, you know, like, they have to do everything. They’re a CEO of their company, but also every other position in your company. So I’m like, this is this is crazy. And we were family, I could really only dedicate I would say like, like 11pm to 3am to do this, right. So yeah, because the rest time will be with my family. So I was like, oh, man, I only have four hours do this. And I can do I’m like trying, I would test all these products. And finally, I did find one that kind of click and kind of worked out. And I was able to scale a little bit. But during that journey, I also heard a lot of ecom owners that started struggling with accounting and tax issues. They were either they will need to post in the forum or you know, talk to each other on discord with some kind of chat channel saying, oh, man, I made it to a certain level. What do I do about tax? Like you might have trouble? I haven’t done it. I haven’t done it for the last year. What What can I do and, and I somebody click me it was like, Oh, I’m a CPA. I’m just in disguise. Also an ecom owner, like, what can I do to help these guys? So me and my partner Stanford was like, yeah, maybe we should take a step back and really niche and say, Well, now that we’ve seen how ecom works, and world of ecom, let’s say, let’s see if we can help them by having an agency dedicated to just ecommerce and online businesses. So that’s kind of like how we got in business. And so far, we’ve been, you know, doing pretty well, as far as it really niching down and helping these guys and they really appreciate I guess, someone that really focused on their area of business and really understand the lingo and can really connect with them I would say.

Joshua Chin 3:41

I was just telling you before record, we started to record that it’s such a valuable thing, an experience to have, you know, understanding what online business owners are going through. Often a typical CPA or an accounting service provider, often don’t understand what what the heck we’re doing in an online space, and how it’s possible. No inventory, or have teams in multiple locations and having a payroll spread out all across the world in different currencies. And it’s it’s kind of hard to find a good partner on that on that front. So tell me about tax planning. Now it’s, it’s something that we kind of put off till the last minute. But I do think that it’s really important because $1 saved is $1 earned. Obviously. That’s a good model. And as a as an online entrepreneur, online business owner, why why should we care?

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