The Best Free Small Business Accounting Software

Small Business Guide to Online Billing Software - Page 2; online billing software

Zoho Invoice (Free, 4 stars), a member of the Zoho software family, is also a very solid selection with its well-designed interface, many import options, and custom fields. Outright (Free. 3.5 stars), like Zoho Invoice, has an intuitive interface, but builds upon that by giving users the ability to download credit card transactions. At the back of the pack are Billing Boss (Free, 2.5 stars), Intuit Billing Manager (Free, 3 stars), and Wave Accounting (Free, 2 stars). These applications may not have scored the highest marks in our in-depth reviews, but they can prove valuable to the small business owner who wants to handle the accounting basics on the cheap. If you're looking for small business accounting software that's simpler and cheaper than QuickBooks Premier Edition 2011, check out the links below for in-depth reviews of six free alternatives that can save you cash and keep you from spending the majority of your day face-down in an instrument manual. And don't forget to check out our roundup of the best small business accounting software . Starting at $79 first month, $39/month thereafter QuickBooks Premier Edition 2011 and its more junior versions offers a superior blend of accounting tools, usability, and integration, but its size, and price, may prove overwhelming. Billing Boss Free Everything the product does right (no cost, simple interface and navigation, collaboration, etc.) is tainted by the fact that users must do (and redo) a lot of unnecessary data entry as they create invoices. It's recommended only if you want to retire your clunky credit card terminal for the convenience of your smartphone. Free You get it all with the free FreshBooks, which is easily the best of the free small business accounting applications: client and product/service records, easy invoice creation and dispatching, document-sharing and reports, and the best integration/smartphone support on the Web. Intuit Billing Manager Free Billing Manager helps you easily create and e-mail free, unlimited one-time and recurring invoices, and tracks payments and sales taxes.
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These are important questions to ask up front. Perhaps most important, find out -- by doing a free trial -- if the online billing service you're considering will actually save you time. "Evaluate it like any business decision," said John Coates, the marketing communications Lead for FreshBooks . "How does the new solution compare to your current solution for invoicing? If it saves you more hours in billable time than the monthly subscription, its worth it." Evaluating Three of the Most Popular Online Invoicing Solutions While there are dozens of free or low-cost online invoicing solutions currently available, three of the most popular and reliable choices among small business owners are FreshBooks, Harvest and Zoho Invoice. All three services were specifically designed for small business use and they all share the following features: 30-day free trials (and/or 30-day money back guarantees) Create, track and manage invoices from a Web-connected computer or smartphone SSL encryption and a high level of data security and backup Some form of customer support What are the main differences between the three services? Price, interface, some features -- and personal taste. Heres what three small business customers had to say about the three billing services. Also, be sure to ask business owners you know and trust what online invoicing service they use -- and do a 30-day free trial. FreshBooks prides itself on being incredibly easy (and intuitive) to use and for providing "stellar customer support." Unlike some other free or low-cost invoicing services, "FreshBooks picks up the phone," boasted Coates. Other noteworthy features: Easy time tracking Ability to see the entire invoice trail, including when a client has viewed and paid it PayPal integration Set-it-and-forget-it email late payment reminders Streamlined reporting (profit & loss, income taxes, sales taxes) Ability to collaborate with staff and contractors Dozens of helpful add-ons For Larissa Schwartz, a digital strategy and user-experience consultant who works with small and mid-sized businesses, using FreshBooks has been a huge plus. "I initially chose FreshBooks because it was free for a limited number of clients/projects," she explained. "I stayed with it because it is easy to use, continues to add new features and is responsive to customers." Schwartz found FreshBooks time-tracking feature efficient and easy, allowing her to create an invoice in seconds.
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50 Online Invoicing Apps for Small Businesses

Sweet. Offers a limited free plan, then plans start at approximately $15/mo. Tools4Com provides a simple invoicing tool with a limited free version. In the upper left portion of the screen, look for your language of choice from French, German or English. Smenta is a robust business application suite. It is meant for automating key business processes like Customer management, Product Management, Sales Quotes, Order Processing, Shipping, in addition to Invoicing. They offer a startup plan that is free, then plans start at $299. It wasnt clear if it was monthly or a one time fee or annual. Tradeshift is an online invoicing service. The home page talks about the social business network and the video implies a disruptive service. Once inside the dashboard, it was easy to create an invoice. If you are an international business, it might be worth a closer look as they are targeting an international supply chain. It is 100% free.
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The Best Small Business Accounting Software

Find out which one of the latest accounting software packages is the best for your business. Email Print OB Roundup Small businesses seeking to ditch the notepads and sticky notes, or to replace aging accounting software, have a number of solid selections to choice in the current crop of money-counting applications. The latest feature-rich accounting software packages let businesses create detailed reports, view purchase histories, track monies owed, and myriad tasks essential to keeping a business profitable. Besides providing many options to handle business operations, outstanding accounting software also delivers an intuitive, well designed interface. You want to dig right into the important numbers, not wrestle with the UI. Quickbooks Premiere Edition 2010 deftly balanced all of the most important aspects of accounting and emerged as the Editors' Choice winner in the desktop space, besting AccountEdge and Peachtree 2010. In the Web space, QuickBooks Online is the clear all-around accounting choice. Freshbooks and Outright offer good service in smaller business niches. If you're in the market for accounting software, you won't go wrong with any of these selectionsjust make sure you choose the one best suited to your needs. Desktop Accounting and Tax Software
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First Look: Small Business Accounting Apps

Just select the industry you want at installation: contractor, manufacturer, nonprofit, professional services, retail, or accounting. The package contains added financial analysis and business planning capabilities, as well. While all three versions of QuickBooks offer a handful of new features, the major improvement is that each is easier to learn how to use. That isn't much benefit to seasoned users, however, who may not find enough new stuff here to justify an upgrade. Simply More Options Best Software, which makes Peachtree Accounting, acquired the Simply Accounting product line when it bought ACCPAC International in 2004. Best brings two notable changes to the Simply Accounting 2005 lineup: the addition of a $500 Premium edition and a price jump to $300 for the Pro version (up from $100). Unfortunately, Best also has removed bilingual (English/Spanish) capability from all but the new Premium edition. I tested shipping versions of all three editions. Each includes a new dashboard that calculates key business performance measures, such as estimated cash available and financial ratios. A simplified forms designer is easier to use (but less capable) than the still-included Crystal Reports from third-party developer Business Objects. The good news is that Simply Basic still sells for just $50, a great bargain compared with Intuit's $200 QuickBooks Basic; it's also half the price of Intuit's less feature-filled Simple Start edition of QuickBooks. For small businesses just starting on the accounting trail, Simply Basic offers outstanding value. One reason to move up from Basic to Pro: The Pro version includes Pocket PC integration, which lets you create orders, invoices, and time slips on your handheld and then synchronize with the accounting software.
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