Face it. We are in business for the money. Anytime we can make more money, save more money, and automate processes, the better off we are.
Thus, the most basic needs of any small business include:
- Getting paid and
- Managing expenses
Your accounting system must be stellar at helping you do both. Penny pinching entrepreneurs love the online accounting services for reliability, redundancy and convenience, but how do they stack up? Freshbooks and QuickBooks Online lead the industry with amazing automated features. They start at $10 per month for a basic set of features for those with small needs or those who are just starting out, but increase quickly as you add features.
How about FREE?
I’ve been using the free Wave Accounting system (https://www.waveapps.com) for 3 years now and the feature set has grown to rival the top dogs. The General Ledger is complete and easy to set up. Invoicing is professional and quick. Estimates and quotes are a snap to create and email. Financial reporting is a breeze and the Dashboard gives you a quick over-view of your entire operation. I use the invoice system weekly with regular emailed Invoices to my clients.
Wave Accounting links with most banks to automatically download your transactions, eliminating 90% of the data entry. If you are a 2-3 man show like me, that’s time and money saved. All that is left to do is to categorize your expenses and income– but even that is partially automated as it learns that the cell phone bill is a Telephone Expense and that a credit card payment from Dr. Jones DDS is Consulting Income. (Payroll, like the other top banana services, is an add-on expense if you need it.)
You may still want to use PayPal, Square, Venmo, Google Wallet, or whatever payment processing service comes up next, and Wave Accounting supports them all! At one point I had five different bank accounts–including Paypal–all on Wave Accounting, which automatically polled and categorized transactions. I’ve since simplified so I just have checking, savings, and PayPal accounts. I decided it was easier to pay my Amex bill as a reimbursed expense on each transaction… but that’s a topic for another day.
Need accounting? Try Wave. The price is right, and I think you’ll like it! Did I mention that it is free!?
Computer Geek, accounting nerd, entrepreneur, photographer, grandpa and 30 year business technology veteran.