As if running your own business wasn’t enough, oftentimes small businesses and freelancers find themselves having to be their own finance manager as well—figuring out budgets, sending invoices, and tracking expenses. More time figuring out money means less time being creative and doing the awesome stuff you love to do!
Fortunately, technology has come a long way since the abacus and these four money-managing apps—Quickbooks, Wave, Shoeboxed, and TransferWise—are all easy to use, save time, and even money— AND almost all of them are FREE!
Gold-standard bookkeeping software Quickbooks is a classic—used by businesses and people everywhere. And it turns out their apps are as comprehensive as their software so you can do your finances while you’re out and about. There’s not much Quickbooks can’t help you do—you can track expenses, take payments, send invoices and receipts, manage inventory, see profit / loss statements and balance sheets. Quickbooks also integrates with a TON of other apps, like TurboTax, Bill.com, TSheets and Expensify.
Cost: $15-$50, depending on the plan, per month.
Easy to use and navigate, lightweight, and also FREE, Wave is a great alternative for small businesses and newbie freelancers. Along with a host of features, there’s automated expense tracking, cash-basis accounting, and an ecommerce platform. Wave integrates with your bank accounts and can process payment options like credit cards and PayPal. They’ve also partnered with OneDeck to offer a lending platform specifically tailored to small businesses looking for capital.
Cost: FREE! (premium features start at $20/month)
If you’re a freelancer drowning in receipts, expense reports, and mileage expenses, Shoeboxed is for you. Forget constantly having to stuff slips of paper in your wallet—with Shoeboxed you can scan and organize receipts, make expense reports with receipt images attached, and export everything to a customer relationship management (CRM) and/or tax preparation tools. There’s even mileage tracking using your smartphone’s GPS. The simple, clean interface is easy to use and customizable!
Cost: FREE with paid options for more features ($15-69 per month)
It’s a hyper connected world out there now—and maybe you do business with people in other parts of the globe, or have remote workers, and are looking for affordable cross-border solutions for payments. International payments are a breeze with TransferWise, which offers competitive conversion rates, low transfer fees, and a ‘Borderless Account’ feature, where you can transfer money in more than 50 different currencies.
Cost: FREE (cost for sending money, but it’s lower than most)