5 apps that take the headache out of business invoicing

Good invoicing software can take much of the grief out of the process by letting you manage multiple clients and automate payment and recurring invoices. Here are some top choices in invoicing and accounting software.

Vasily Fedosenko/Reuters/File
A woman with a laptop is seen in Hi-Tech Park Belarus building in Minsk, Belarus (March 17, 2016).

No one exactly enjoys invoicing, especially when it involves juggling multiple clients or projects. However, invoicing is, of course, vital to getting paid and staying in business.

Good invoicing software can take much of the grief out of the process by letting you manage multiple clients and automating payment and recurring invoices. Here are some top choices in invoicing and accounting software, beginning with the two of the most popular programs, followed by others listed in alphabetical order.

FreshBooks

FreshBooks offers a comprehensive suite of payment and invoicing features. The program allows you to manage not only your invoices, but also expenses, time tracking, projects, payments, accounting and tax reporting and client information. For invoicing, you can set up recurring invoices and generate quotes and estimates on the fly. There’s also a built-in timer so that you can easily bill hourly for projects. If you process a high volume of invoices per month, FreshBooks offers a professional version, called FreshBooks Select, aimed at larger businesses.

Price: $15 - $50 per month

QuickBooks

Most small business owners are familiar with QuickBooks, the accounting software from Intuit. QuickBooks offers an online, desktop and self-employed versions of its software. The version for the self-employed is a great choice for any solopreneurs or freelancers that need a simple setup to invoice clients and do bookkeeping. The online version allows you to automatically schedule and send invoices, as well as do batch invoices. QuickBooks also offers a payroll upgrade to its accounting software with a do-it-yourself or full service option.

Price: $10 - $40 per month ($84 - $500 for desktop software)

Harvest

Harvest offers online time-tracking and invoicing software, along with resourcing software that integrates with the invoicing app. With the invoicing software, you can track time billed, issue invoices, receive payment online and track expenses. The software also connects to 70 other apps, including Google Suite, PayPal, Fundbox, Trello, QuickBooks and SalesForce. If you decide to add on the resourcing software, you’ll be able to track projects and see how your estimates are stacking up against the actuals.

Price: $12 per person per month

Wave

Wave offers a suite of business applications, including accounting and invoicing, payroll, payment processing and receipt scanning. When you set up your Wave account, you’ll have access to the invoicing, accounting and receipt scanning software for free. Wave allows you to set up recurring invoices, automatic payment reminders and send estimates and quotes. You can also add on credit card processing or payroll services for additional monthly fees. Wave also offers small business loans up to $500,000 in partnership with OnDeck.

Price: Free

Zoho

If you’re looking for all-in-one small business software, Zoho bills itself as “the operating system for business”. The company offers a suite of online business software ranging from CRM software to accounting and invoicing apps to email and helpdesk apps. With the invoicing software, you can set up recurring invoices, track expenses, bill in multiple currencies and accept online payments. There’s even a free version that allows you to invoice up to five customers monthly, making it a good option for the self-employed.

Price: $0 - $30 per month

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