Is Billing and Invoice Software Right for Your Business?
Self-employed types such as freelancers, consultants and contract workers have different accounting needs than small businesses with large volumes of inventory or many employees. Self-employed professionals often only need to invoice clients, track payments, send out statements and manage customer contact information.
The best billing and invoice software provides good-looking correspondence for your business and keeps you organized and efficient. It tracks invoices, late payments, estimates and time. It generates reports. It also tracks people, shipping/billing addresses and preferred payment methods. Many applications can directly email invoices and statements to your clients. Generally, small business invoicing software is designed for smaller operations. If you plan to continue to work by yourself, you will be fine. However, if you think you might add employees later or that you might want more advanced accounting tools in the future, you will want to consider software that is easy to upgrade.
Within this site, you'll find articles on billing and invoice software and comprehensive reviews to help you make an informed decision about which software is right for your business. We find that the best invoice software for small business people and consultants is: BillQuick Pro, kBilling and Quicken Home and Business.
Billing and Invoice Software: What to Look For
We focus on software that is easy to use that provides invoicing, billing and customer management and does not require advanced accounting skills. We also look at additional features such as remote backup, templates, forms and inventory management, which are good extras to have if you need them. We rate billing and invoice software according to the following criteria:
Basic small business invoicing software includes the ability to create invoices easily with auto-fill elements and the ability to share invoices via email or as PDF or HTML files. We also look at time billing elements, which are important for those who bill for their services by time.
Billing & Payment Features
This is basically the invoice follow-up section, which includes the ability to track overdue invoices as well as the ability to accept a variety of payment methods, including partial payments, credits and down payments.
Customer Relationship Management
Good customer relations begin with good customer management. This module of the billing and invoicing software saves client information such as contact information, shipping/billing addresses, contact persons, email addresses and billing histories. With some products, you can send correspondence to customers directly through the software.
Additional features are nice bonuses should they be desired. We look at what extra features the software offers to help business owners figure out which application would be best. For example, some products offer inventory tools or process credit cards for an additional fee. If a product includes accounting software it makes for an easy path from simple billing and invoice functions. Billing and invoicing is, of course, a much simpler function than full blown accounting. A bill or an invoice shows the product and price due to the seller by the buyer. Accounting involves recording and analyzing the financial transactions.
Ease of Use
We look for programs that do not require advanced accounting skills. The best invoicing and billing software is so easy to use that nearly anyone can create a professional-looking invoice within minutes.
Help & Support
We look at whether the companies provide free email and telephone support as well as whether they offer paid support should you want advanced assistance.
This software is perfect for the self-employed or freelance types. It can create great-looking invoices from templates or from scratch and help you create a customized, professional look for your customer communications. No matter how small your business is, coming across as efficient, professional and organized is important, and this software can help you do that easily.
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