Top 5 Billing and Invoicing Management Software in 2020
To make sure that customers will stay, make repeat orders and keep the company profitable, businesses have to finish strong. At the latter part of every business transaction is billing and sending invoice to the customer. Billing and invoicing management software makes this stage of a business transaction very professional and pain free. Billing and invoicing management software enables businesses to instantly deliver invoices using emails. There is significant cost savings compared to manually printing and delivering bills. Keeping it online means making it accessible as long as there is Internet connection. When customers receive their professional-looking invoices accurately and on time, the billing company gets a good impression.
The Top 5
Here is a list of our top 5 applications for online billing and invoicing management. They offer mobility, automate calculations, create consistent and professional look, can be delivered by email and produce significant savings. Each software also has special features and plans that will help users determine which one is right for them.
FreshBooks is a cloud accounting software offered by a Toronto, Canada company founded in 2003. Users are able to track time, organize expenses and invoice clients online. They can customize their invoice, accept credit card payments, attach PDF or image receipts, track recurring expenses, and more. People can try the software-as-a-service for free for 30 days. Paid plans start at $15 per month. It is easy to use and is supported by an award-winning customer service team.
2. Zoho Invoice
Zoho Invoice is specifically for creating professional invoice online. The software can create and send invoices in a matter of seconds. It also tracks time, automate payment reminders, accept online payments and provide information and insight on the business. It offers a freemium plan where it is free for 1 user with up to 5 customers. For $19 per month, up to 3 users can use the software to take care up of to 500 of its customers. Since it is a part of the Zoho product suite, users can easily integrate with other products such as its online accounting software Books.
QuickBooks from Intuit has the Simple Start plan at $14 per month ideal for startups. It is easy to set up where everything is customized for one’s business. It has dashboards and feeds that show users what they immediately need to attend to as well as the actions to take. Invoices can be customized to have the company logo, font type, background image and custom fields. It also has a Pay Now link on the invoice where the customer can click to instantly pay via credit card or bank payment.
Xero is an online accounting, invoicing, billing and banking software. It provides access to real-time financial information that helps its customers take advantage of opportunities while avoiding situations that will give them problems. Aside from online invoice management, it also has features for managing payment, payroll and cash flow. The service can be accessed via PC, Mac, tablet or phone.A starter plan that allows users to create and send 5 invoices is priced at $20 per month. Over 400,000 small businesses use the software.
WorkflowMax is an online job, time and invoice management software which was acquired by Xero. However, it is focused more on providing an integrated business solution rather than an accounting and financial system. It is ideal for construction professionals, architects, engineers, creative agencies, IT services and business consultants. It has pre-sale tools and project management functions, as well as tools for purchase orders, reporting, accounting software integration, and invoicing. Standard pricing plan starts at $20 per month per user.
Importance, Benefits and Use Cases
Billing and invoicing software is important to your business especially in today’s fast-paced business environment. Instead of starting from a blank page with your word processor and putting in all the invoice document details, you can create invoices faster and more accurately. No more manual entries of invoice number, product details, important dates, and other information, or possible duplication, double entry, and other errors.
Furthermore, online billing and invoicing software are accessible anywhere, so users can create invoices from various locations. They can also integrate it with full accounting systems, e-commerce platforms and other business systems.
Billing and invoicing software is beneficial to companies because it:
- Helps streamline billing and invoicing processes in order to receive payments on time.
- Helps in monitoring and tracking of billing commitments, so as not to miss collecting any due payment.
- Helps lift the company’s reputation by presenting professional-looking invoices with customized logos and images.
- Helps minimize personnel costs or staff workload due to the automation of tasks related to the creation of invoices, and on following up on late payments.
- Helps secure the billing-to-payment process from unwanted or unauthorized access, which is made possible through bank-grade security features built in the software.
In short, online billing and invoicing software enables you to create and customize invoices easily using only your web browser. It helps facilitate your billing and payment requirements for your customers, allowing you to directly receive their payments, even in multiple currencies. You can also generate several types of reports, automate its generation, export, print or share them by email.
Common Features and Capabilities
Online billing and invoicing software come with a wide range of features and capabilities. Some are specialized in creating professional-looking invoices, some have additional tools like time tracking, while others are all-in-one solutions with accounting and banking features. However, some capabilities are now basically standard, and also the most frequently looked for:
- Create new invoice that can be customized, able to capture information from other records such as project files, timesheets, or customer records.
- Create customer records, including personal and purchase information, as well as attach files, all of which can be searched.
- Process credit cards of customers for payment, and even automatically bill them for recurring charges.
- Provide predefined templates that can be customized, to help save time as well as personalize communication with customers.
- Handle multiple currencies, especially for businesses with global presence and operations.
- Send/receive information, allowing users to send quotes, and receive approvals, requests, and other communication.
- Generate tax report, without having to use an external system.
However, there is no existing global standard for online billing and invoicing software to based their features or operations. In fact, there are various standards used in different places, countries, and regions, as well as the taxes placed. Also, although online systems are generally more secure than manual processes because of digital processing and safety protocols, security breaches are now more complicated, more frequent, and consequently, more damaging. It is up to the companies and organizations to regularly monitor their system and operations to look for anything unusual, and get professional and/or official assistance.
Billing and Invoicing Software Latest Trends
Online billing and invoicing software, just like other software systems, are being updated and enhanced due to the changing business landscape. Some of the latest trends impacting this group of software include adoption of electronic billing and invoicing led by governments of nations. State authorities are becoming more involved in the standardization, compliance and the promotion of online billing and invoicing in their respective territories for the savings and efficiencies that result in its use.
Another trend is the advancement of automation features. More and more billing and invoicing tasks are becoming automated, minimizing the need to manually monitor transactions with every customer, and also reducing the chance of errors and missed payments. Blockchain and AI technology are seen to improve and automate financial reconciliation, which can help identify fraud.
Also, the increased speed and accuracy of business transactions, brought about by faster billing and invoicing and its corresponding payments, is accelerating the so-called real-time economy. This will have an effect that will further promote digitalization and connectivity, resulting in bigger and faster data infrastructures, systems, applications, and more.
Factors for Choosing an Online Billing and Invoicing Software
Here are some tips when searching for the right billing and invoicing solution:
- Understand the billing process of your business, and how the software you will choose can solve its issues or problems, and help improve it. If your requirements are simple and specific, then you should also choose the solution that is simple and addresses that particular requirement.
- Your choice of solution should be easy to use and understand, allows you to customize it for your business and brand, and looks professional enough to represent your image and reputation. Your customers should also be able to read and understand all the details clearly.
- It must come from vendors that have a good reputation in terms of safety and security. They should be able to explain clearly how safe it is to use their software.
- The software should come with responsive customer support. Although online billing and invoicing software are constantly updated, each customer has unique requirements and situation. Issues, bugs, and other malfunction will occur, so the software vendor should have an accessible, competent and friendly customer support that can offer assistance in problem solving and access to other resources.
Every business and organization is unique, but all have paying customers that need to receive bills or invoices for products they bought or services they hired. A simple invoice software such as Zoho Invoice may be all that is needed by one company. On the other hand, a full accounting software such as FreshBooks, Xero or QuickBooks Online may be required by a growing business. Then, there is also the all-in-one WorkflowMax especially for companies offering professional services.