The most common of these are invoices and bills, and all the services we reviewed support them. Applications like Xero and Zoho Books go further, allowing you to produce more-advanced forms, such as purchase orders, sales receipts, credit notes, and statements.
Accounting Software For Mac
They provide templates for these online forms that resemble their paper counterparts. All you have to do is fill in the blanks and select from lists of customers and items. Once you've completed an invoice, for example, you have several options. You can save it as a draft or a final version and either print it or email it. If you do the latter and you've established a relationship with a payment processor, your invoice can contain a stub explaining how the customer can return payment via credit card or bank withdrawal.
You can create a PDF version of the invoice, copy it, record a payment on it, or set it up to recur on a regular schedule.
All forms on these sites work similarly. These solutions also pay special attention to your company's expenses—not bills that you enter and pay, but other purchases you make. This is an area of your finances that can easily get out of control if it's not monitored.
So accounting websites monitor them, divide them into expense types, and compare them with your income using totals and colorful charts. If you're traveling and have numerous related expenses on the road, for example, you can take pictures of receipts with your smartphone.
Mac versions are often lacking in features
Some sites just attach these receipts to a manually entered expense form. Others, like QuickBooks Online, actually "read" the receipts and transfer some of their data date, vendor, amount to an expense form. As we mentioned earlier, one of your setup tasks involves creating records that contain information about the products and services you sell so you can use them in transactions.
These vary in complexity, so you need to understand the differences before you go with one site or another.
Some, like Kashoo, simply allow you to maintain descriptive records. Others, like QuickBooks Online, go further. They ask how many of each product you have in inventory when you create a record and at what point you should be alerted to reorder. Then they actually track inventory levels, which provides insight on selling patterns and keeps you from running low. While much of your daily accounting work probably involves paying bills, sending invoices, and recording payments, you also need to keep a close eye on your bank and credit card activity. If you've connected your financial accounts to your accounting service, this is easy to accomplish.
For one thing, their balances will often appear on the site's dashboard, or home page. You'll also be able to view each account's online register, which contains transactions that have cleared your bank and been imported into your accounting solution along with those you've entered manually. You can do a lot with these transactions once they appear in a register.
For one thing, they should be categorized office expense, payroll taxes, travel and meal costs are some examples so you know where your money is coming from and where it's going. Every service guesses at how at least some transactions might be categorized; you can change these if they're incorrect and add your own. Conscientious categorization will result in more accurate reports and income tax returns. You can also match related transactions, such as an invoice that was entered in the system and a corresponding payment that came through.
Again, some sites make educated guesses here. You can split transactions that should be assigned to multiple categories, make notes, and reconcile your accounts with your bank and credit card statements. Reports are your reward for keeping up with your daily work and completing it correctly. Every accounting website comes with templates for numerous types of insightful output. You select one, customize it using the filter and display options provided, and let the site pour your own company data into it. It only takes a few seconds to generate a report after you've defined it.
There are really two types of reports. The bulk of them are the type that any small businessperson could customize, generate, and understand. They tell you who owes you money, which of your products and services are selling well, whether you're making money, which expenses and services haven't yet been billed, which customers are buying the most, how much you owe in sales tax, and more.
There are other reports, though, that aren't so easy to view and understand. These are considered standard financial reports, and they're the kind of documents you'll need if you ever want to get a loan from a bank or attract investors.
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Accounting websites can generate them, but you really need an accounting professional to analyze them and tell you in concrete terms what they mean for you company. Accounting probably doesn't make the list of things you like to do as a business owner. It can be complicated, and it needs to be done correctly. So, the makers of online accounting solutions have worked hard to present this discipline as simply and, well, pleasantly as possible.
If you've ever used a productivity application online, you shouldn't have any trouble understanding these services' structure. They all divide their content into logical modules by providing toolbars and other navigation guides. Sales tasks are grouped together, as are purchase, inventory, reporting, and payroll activities. There's always a Settings link that takes you to screens where you can specify preferences for the entire site; these include your setup chores and settings you may need to modify at times, such as restricting additional users to specific areas.
A site's dashboard homepage provides a real-time overview of the financial information you need to see frequently, including charts comparing income and expenses, account balances, and invoices and bills that need immediate attention. There are often links to areas of the site where you can take action.
You use standard web conventions to navigate around each site and enter data. Along the way, you'll encounter lots of buttons and arrows, drop-down lists and menus.
Color is sometimes used to signify related information, while graphics and fonts are well chosen to make the sites as aesthetically pleasing as possible. If you're a sole proprietor or freelancer, you probably don't need all the features offered by full-featured small business accounting websites. You might want to track your online bank and credit card accounts, record income and expenses, maybe send invoices, and track time worked if you're service-based. Maybe you need to track mileage. You might need help estimating your quarterly income tax obligation, and you certainly want mobile access to your financial data.
AccountEdge Pro Accounting Software for Mac and Windows
There are numerous sites that can do a combination of these things. They're easy to use, inexpensive totally free in the case of Wave , and they overwhelm you with functionality you don't need. Our Editors' Choice this year in this category goes to FreshBooks. This beautifully designed website started life as a simple online invoicing application , and it's since added more tools, including basic time- and project-tracking, expense management, estimate and proposal creation, and reports.
FreshBooks lacks some features that others offer, though. It doesn't have its own integrated payroll-processing application like Wave does though it integrates with payroll Editors' Choice Gusto and dozens of other related web services , and it's not a true double-entry accounting like Billy is. Wave also lacks QuickBooks Self-Employed's real-time mileage tracker and it doesn't automate as many processes as Less Accounting. Note that while we did review Less Accounging, it didn't make the cutoff for this roundup of the top ten services. Whether you need one of these entry-level financial management websites or your business is complex enough that you need to start with one of the small business accounting options, we think you'll find that this year's batch of solutions offers enough variety that you can find the right fit for your business.
While you're thinking about your money, you might also like to consider our reviews of online payroll services and tax software. Pros: Excellent user interface and navigation. Flexible contact records and transaction forms. Customizable reports. Comprehensive payroll support.
Finding Mac accounting software for your small business
Hundreds of add-ons and integrations. New project-management support. Cons: Expensive. Poor online documentation. It's easy to use, well designed, and built to serve a wide variety of users, but it's also pricey. Pros: Freshbooks offers a delightful user experience that enable freelancers and SMBs to quickly invoice customers and get paid faster.
- Keep track of all your expenses the easy way.
- Powerful small business accounting software for the Mac desktop user..
- Top choice: MoneyWorks Gold 7.
- 20 Best Accounting Software Solutions for Mac of 12222.
Team collaboration tools, time tracking, and estimate functionality are great add ons. Cons: Poor reporting functionality, limited features in the estimates tool. Late Fees feature could use more options.