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Top 5 Accounting Apps for SMEs

When handling your own business, it is crucial to keep an eye on everything. Especially your finances, and for that, you need reliable and easy-to-use accounting software. Accounting apps help you with tasks like bookkeeping, invoicing, tax compliance, payroll, reporting and more. But with so many options available, how do you choose the best one for your needs?

Let’s review the top 5 accounting apps for small businesses based on their features, pricing, customer reviews and popularity. We have highlighted our favourite features of each specific app. 

1. QuickBooks

One of the most popular and widely used accounting software for small businesses in Somerset and around the world. It offers a cloud-based solution that lets you access your accounts from any device, anywhere. You can also use its mobile app to manage your finances on the go. Here’s why QuickBooks is on our best list:

Industry-specific solutions

QuickBooks provides different versions of its software for different industries, such as retail, manufacturing, construction, non-profit and more. 

Seamless integrations

QuickBooks integrates with over 800 apps and services that you use for your business, such as PayPal, Shopify, Stripe, Mailchimp, Zapier and more. 

Excellent customer support and online resources

Offers reliable and responsive customer support and online resources, such as FAQs, guides, tutorials, forums and more.

Plan Price Users
Simple Start £12 per month One user
Essentials £20 per month Up to three users
Plus £30 per month Up to five users
Advanced £60 per month Up to 25 users

QuickBooks offers a 30-day free trial for all its plans. You can also add payroll functionality for an extra £4 per month (plus £1 per employee per month).

2. Xero

Xero is another leading accounting software. You can monitor your cash flow, make and receive payments, handle your invoices and bills, match your bank transactions, file your taxes, produce and customise reports, plan and manage budgets and forecasts, deal with foreign currencies and exchange rates, and connect with other apps and services that you use for your business. 

What makes Xero stand out?

User interface

Simple interface and layout that makes accounting easy and fun. 

A flexible dashboard 

Gives you a clear overview of your business performance.

Automated bank feeds 

Smart and automated bank feed that imports and categorises your transactions for you.

Security

Secure connection to HMRC’s Making Tax Digital (MTD) service that lets you submit your VAT returns digitally.

Access to Hubdoc

A document management app that captures and stores your receipts and bills

Free and unlimited access to Xero Central

A learning platform that provides courses, guides, tutorials, forums and more

Plan Price Users
Starter £10 per month One user
Standard £24 per month Unlimited users
Premium £30 per month Unlimited users

You can also add payroll functionality for an extra £5 per month (plus £1 per employee per month).

Xero offers a 30-day free trial for all its plans.

3. Zoho

Zoho is a cloud software suite for businesses that offers a range of online productivity tools and SaaS applications. With over 75 million users worldwide, Zoho makes it to the top list. It’s the perfect app for business functions including CRM, email, accounting, project management, marketing, collaboration and more.

What makes Zoho the best? 

Zia: The AI assistant

Assists you with different activities, such as creating reports, forecasting results, recommending steps, streamlining processes, solving problems and more.

Journey Orchestration

Journey Orchestration is a feature that lets you design and execute personalised customer journeys across different channels and touchpoints. It is used to create campaigns and workflows, making business a lot easier.

BI: Business intelligence

Helps you analyse your data and get actionable insights. You can use it to create and customise reports, dashboards, charts, widgets and more. Collaborate with others and share business insights to get a considerable edge. Similarly embedded BI is a feature that lets you embed your reports and dashboards into your own applications or websites.

Security & Governance

Protect your data and privacy and comply with various regulations and standards. It lets you control your users and roles, define access rights and rules, secure your data with encryption, monitor your actions, backup and restore your data, and more.

Plan Price Users
Basic £6 per month Two users
Standard £12 per month Three users
Professional £18 per month Ten users

You can also add payroll functionality for an extra £1 per employee per month.

Zoho Books offers a 14-day free trial for all its plans.

4. FreshBooks

FreshBooks is a Canadian-based accounting software that focuses on providing solutions for freelancers and small businesses. With customers in over 160 countries, FreshBooks is one of the top choices for cloud accounting.

Why FreshBooks made the cut?

Invoicing

Creates and sends professional-looking invoices, customize them with your logo and colours, and tracks when they are viewed and paid.

Time tracking 

Tracks the time you spend on projects, bills, and your clients. It then generates detailed reports so that you can analyse everything and plan ahead.

Expenses

Easily record and categorize your business expenses, attach receipts, and automate recurring expenses.

Payments

accept online payments from your clients using FreshBooks Payments (WePay), Stripe or PayPal and get paid faster.

Reports 

generate various reports to monitor your business performance, such as profit and loss, balance sheet, tax summary, and more.

Integrations

You can integrate FreshBooks with over 100 partners to help you simplify your workflows, such as Gusto, Squarespace, Dropbox, HubSpot, and GSuite.

iOS & Android Apps

You can send invoices, track time, manage payments, and more…from anywhere using the FreshBooks mobile app.

Plan Price per month Client limit
Lite £11 5
Plus £19 50
Premium £38 500
Select Custom <500

You can also add payroll functionality for an extra £8 per month (plus £4 per employee per month).

FreshBooks offers a 30-day free trial for all its plans.

5. Wave Accounting

Designed for freelancers, consultants, and small businesses to simplify and protect their finances. Wave manages your invoicing, payments, bookkeeping, accounting, and payroll for free. Just like other accounting apps, It also connects to your bank account and automatically updates your transactions.

Features that make it stand out:

It is free

For most of its functions, such as invoicing, bookkeeping, expense tracking, and reporting the app is free. This makes it the best app to try out. See if it fulfils your accounting needs, and if not you can jump up to another app.

Has a smart dashboard, thoughtful automation and robust reporting 

Organise your income, expenses, payments, and invoices. The automation features save time by automating bank data connections, recurring billing and payments, and tax calculations. Reporting helps you monitor your business performance and can help you prepare better for tax season.

Optional money management features 

Although this feature is not free, it offers online payment processing, payroll software, personalized bookkeeping services and coaching through Wave Advisors.

Wave pricing plans

Wave Accounting is free to use for unlimited users, invoices, transactions and reports. However, you will have to pay extra fees for some features such as

  • Online payments: 1.4% + 20p per transaction for European cards or 2.9% + 20p per transaction for non-European cards
  • Payroll processing: £18 per month (plus £4 per employee per month)
  • Professional services: Starting from £79 per month for bookkeeping or tax services

Give Accounting an Edge.

Accounting software is a vital tool for every business. It can help you manage your finances efficiently, and save you time and money. However, choosing the best accounting software for your business can be tricky, as there are many options available with different features, pricing and reviews. 

Note that these are not the only features available and other apps can also have the same features. In the end, it all depends on what app suits you the most.

If you have any questions or feedback, please feel free to contact us. We would love to hear from you! 

Happy accounting! 😊

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