Please enjoy this guest post from Hannah West of TrustRadius!
Freelancers juggle multiple clients and projects, but meeting staggered deadlines is only part of the job. Self-employed workers have to keep close track of their finances to ensure payments arrive on time and to that their tax information and business deductions are tidy. These financial tasks and the constant vigilance can easily consume precious hours – hours during which freelancers are not compensated for their work.
But invoicing software can make your life easier by helping you keep track of your finances and streamline the invoicing process. From providing beautiful templates to automating billing nudges to clients, software will simplify your payments and save you time.
Here are six top invoicing tool options based on accounting software reviews and ratings from small businesses and freelancers who are authenticated users.
FreeAgent offers a whole gallery of invoice templates that you can brand with your own logo. It also allows you to set up recurring invoices for those clients you consistently work with, and you can take the payments through PayPal, Stripe, or Dwolla. Create and customize automatic payment reminders and thank-you emails to avoid taking the time to personally following up with clients. You can easily convert estimates and proposals into invoices as well. FreeAgent is web-based, which means there’s nothing to install. Invoicing really couldn’t be much simpler!
Zoho Invoice is another web-based invoicing software option with an array of useful features. Time tracking helps you get paid for every minute you’ve spent working on a project. Freelancers with international clients will appreciate the multi-currency and multi-lingual invoicing options. Plus, it has an easy-to-read dashboard which offers critical insights into your business activity. Client portals make it convenient for both you and your clients to check in and see what’s going on with upcoming or payments that are due. Connect to your preferred payment gateway and directly charge your clients’ cards.
Xero is a full-service online accounting software with invoicing included. It offers bank reconciliation and real-time updates from your accounts, plus financial collaboration with your advisors. It simplifies double bookkeeping so even non-accountants can understand complex concepts. If you need a software that does much more than send invoices and receive payments, Xero may be your best option.
Wave is a completely free accounting software with affordable pay-as-you-go extra features, including credit card processing, bank payment processing, and payroll. You don’t have to spend a dime to create and customize invoices or set up automatic payment reminders. Track payments, partial payments, and overdue invoices. As you can see, Wave’s free invoicing software is packed with useful features, including IOS and Android apps which you can use from anywhere.
Quickbooks Self-Employed allows you to send and track simple invoices, but it’s real power lies in its tax-friendly features. You can automatically track mileage, separate your business and personal expenses, maximize your Schedule C deductions, and estimate quarterly taxes. If tax season stresses you out due to all your scattered payment records and receipts, this software is definitely for you. It allows you to send invoices from your phone and keep tabs on invoice status.
FreshBooks allows you to easily customize and create professional invoices, customize payment terms, and accept credit card payments from clients. You can request a deposit on your invoice so you don’t have to stress out about slow payments. Your taxes are automatically calculated so you don’t have to do the math, and expense categories make filing easier. FreshBooks is especially designed for self-employed people, and the product website claims the software saves freelancers 16 hours per month. The time-saving claim can certainly be made about other invoicing software, but there’s something exciting about the prospect of increased productivity and revenue!
Being self-employed doesn’t mean you have to manage your finances by yourself. These invoicing software products allow you to conserve energy for projects that actually make you money. They can also help reduce your stress around tax season by keeping relevant information organized.
With free and low-cost options, plus 30-day free trials for most subscription services, there’s really no reason to keep using simple word templates and send manual invoices. Switch over to a web-based tool that offers sleek template options and automatic invoicing and reminders.
Hannah West writes about the newest technology tools and trends for TrustRadius and is the author of young adult fantasy novels Kingdom of Ash and Briars and upcoming Realm of Ruins. She holds a degree in French that rarely comes in handy and lives in Texas with her husband.