Our complete guide to invoice and bookkeeping systems

Online bookkeeping systems are an amazing way to simplify your accounting processes and ensure your finances are fully in order all year round. Better yet, they don’t break the bank as they offer various plans designed to suit small businesses of all shapes and sizes. Well, after years spent helping businesses select a bookkeeping service right for them, we’ve tried all of the various services available. And here’s the top 3. From these, you’re bound to find one to suit your business perfectly.
Bookkeeping Software

5th June 2018

Estimated reading time: 4 minutes, 43 seconds.

1. Xero

Xero is incredibly popular with small businesses across a wide range of industries as it is suited to companies of all types. It is arguably the most famous bookkeeping system around and a personal favourite for many of our clients. We’ve found that, in particular, it is fantastic for eCommerce store owners, as it integrates nicely with Woocommerce.

This saves you significant time and hassle as sales and transactions will reconcile automatically. You can also establish repeat billing and invoicing as well, allowing you to further streamline monthly payments. Personally, we also find it incredibly simple and powerful to integrate Square as the chosen payment gateway app. It works nicely for freelancers.

What’s also great about Xero is that its diverse range of features are coupled with an easy-to-use interface. What this means is, as your company grows and your needs expand, Xero grows with you. It still maintains much of the technical terminology that non-accountants tend to be fazed by. However, we find that beginners tend to pick everything up pretty fast.

5 great benefits of using Xero:

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Relatively easy to set up (especially compared to other similar types of software)
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Allows you to edit your systems on-the-go
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Offers a range of templates for those not wishing to develop any of their own (such as invoices)
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Provides analytical overview of your company’s financial health
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Unlimited email support free of charge for all users

2. QuickBooks

QuickBooks is another cloud-based accounting software ideally suited to both freelancers and small business owners. They offer a very reasonably priced package for those who are self-employed and have a mobile app that is also rather intuitive. Those who hate accounting love it because it aids you by performing self-assessment all on its own.

Compared to Xero, many of our clients also find QuickBooks even easier to use. However, it does lack a few key features that make Xero slightly more desirable. This includes the ability to set up repeat invoices. Also, you cannot mark a payment as complete before first generating an invoice. This is frustrating if you oftentimes receive payments in cash.

However, QuickBooks is a great bookkeeping system in itself. It allows you to generate complete financial overviews for your company which delves into costs, revenue and profit. You can also fully customise these reports and have them viewable by multiple people within your company. Full customisation is possible for 5 users through the app, and limited functionality is available to an unlimited number of users.

5 great benefits of using QuickBooks:

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All of your data is safely backed up to the cloud in case anything goes missing

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All data is accessible across multiple devices and accounts, however, you can maintain control over which users can access which information

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It offers a straightforward user interface

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Regardless of your package, you can access complete service support

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It’s easy to export data to Excel if necessary

3. Sage Business Cloud Accounting

Sage Business Cloud Accounting has undergone a number of upgrades in recent months. It is now a contender as one of the best invoice and bookkeeping systems around and can easily compete with the likes of Xero and QuickBooks. Personally, we find that it is less user-friendly for those who are less experienced with accounting software.

However, if you are more experienced and are happy to get your hands dirty, then this could be the option for you. The software allows you to manage all different types of process or payment documentation. This includes price quotations, statements and, of course, invoices. Any data covered by the system can then be turned into incredibly useful forecasts.

You can track all of your receivables and cash flow, as well as taking taxation into consideration. You can then project your finances and ensure everything is in order. Sage also offers payment processing integration, allowing you to fully streamline payment processes. It also integrates with a whole host of other third-party tools and applications.

5 great benefits of using QuickBooks:

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High-quality mobile applications for both Android and iOS

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The ability to set up recurring invoices

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The ability to manage suppliers, customers and inventory all in one place

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A knowledge base, complete with how-to videos and training courses

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The ability to fully customise reports and drill down into your data

Looking for help arranging your accounting systems?

Xero, QuickBooks and Sage Business Cloud Accounting are widely considered the 3 best bookkeeping systems currently available in the UK. However, it can be hard trying to decide which one offers the perfect features for your business. If you’re struggling to get started, then feel free to contact our team.

As well as offering web design and digital marketing services, we frequently help our clients to set up their own online bookkeeping systems and ditch the old-fashioned pen and paper. In fact, we’ve now helped over 70 businesses to do exactly this. As such, we have a firm understanding of which solution suits different businesses best.

Many of our clients are relishing the chance to go completely mobile with their accounting and bookkeeping processes and we are happy to put together bespoke support for anyone who needs it. Get in contact today to find out more.

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