Accounting services have always been a crucial part of any business or company. Accounting shows business owners a view of their profitability or losses, as well as provides them with the data about financial management, allowing to keep expenditures and income records.
A few years ago, accounting tasks were done manually with the use of ledgers and journals. But today, people can use them online and get benefits due to great simplification and improvement in usability. Based on CAGR data, the accounting market will expand over 6 percent from 2017 through 2021. The growing demand for financial process modernization is seen to fuel this growth.
How Does Accounting Service Work?
Each accounting program has its own interface and features. However, they have much in common, including the following:
User interface and navigation
A cloud-based accounting application is a good option. It doesn’t require rich graphics. Apps use it where it makes sense for example, for displaying charts and graphs, and for invoice forms. As for the navigation, it takes the cues from desktop software, using static and drop-down lists, icons, and buttons, etc.
In most cases, some web-based accounting apps provide you with more than one level of service and at different prices. That’s why you can get the version that most closely matches your business’ needs.
Of course, the accounting app still has some terms and phrases that wouldn’t usually come up in casual conversation for example, debits and credits, general ledger, and chart of accounts, etc. However, modern apps use such language only when it’s absolutely necessary.
Integration with other settings
Nowadays accounting includes two areas: the cloud and integration. Small and medium companies with tremendous growth might need to choose the next level of cloud-based financial management apps, such as Intacct. But if a company needs more flexibility or special features, like invoicing or inventory management, it can use other add-on solutions such as QuickBooks Online and Xero.
Since we live in a modern world, people can use the cloud-based accounting applications at any time, anywhere, to access financial data. Kashoo company was the first to build an iPad app, and OneUp was developed specially for mobile devices.
Self Employed Accounting Software
All businesses have to track their money, from payroll to taxes. And small companies or freelancers are no exception. If you’re a freelancer or contractor and you use a cloud-based accounting app aimed at larger businesses, you probably noticed that you’re paying more than you want for features that you don’t need.
Today, you can avoid this problem using special accounting software, wizard-based on access from anywhere, and the safety of an offsite backup. And furthermore, a breed of online accounting tools is made especially for freelancers with mobile versions, integration, quarterly estimated income tax calculations, reports, etc.
Invoicing Software and Billing Services
If you are not a retail seller, you most likely need to make invoices for clients. Some companies use a word processor. However, they need to have an additional method for tracking sent invoices. And there are a lot of integrated and more efficient options for accounting and to send invoices to clients, such as, Zoho Invoice (a cloud-based application), Hiveage, and Invoicera. All these applications can help you to send invoices, receive, and track all companies’ payments.
Desktop Accounting Software
Not every small business is in need of some extra features, so some companies can consider cloud-based solutions, because there’s no need to have IT specialists that will be responsible for operating and maintaining the server, as the systems are hosted online.
However, desktop accounting software systems are faster, local, and can be operated even without the connection to the Internet. Of course, nowadays due to the added features, this type of software depends on an Internet connection, but the core of this system is still accessible offline.
Which Web-Based Solution Fits Your Business?
According to the options and features to choose from, the task of selecting an accounting software system became an overwhelming task for some companies. Below, we’re going to describe important factors in finding best matches for small businesses:
- Available user support
- Customer service
- Data access and import
- Mobile access and mobile features
- Service limitations (such as number of customers, invoices, users, transactions and etc.)
- Prices and subscription costs
All of these factors were and are still suitable for small business in order to make a right choice of software, but nowadays some of the points became even more important such as:
If the company is growing fast, it’s crucial to track everything in the system and reduce the inaccuracies by making a lot of the features automated.
Multiple solutions in one package
Every company first needs to decide the main features, and then focus on additional solutions. Multiple applications in one software package will cost more, but have a big variety of functionality.
Integration with other programs
Consider whether your software can integrate with any of your company’s applications (for example, a payroll or retail system). Moreover, accounting software can synchronize with online accounts and integrate with banks and credit cards, which allows you to track the financial state of the company in the real time.
These days, all of the accounting software and invoicing packages are built for business owners that can only benefit from accounting software. It can easily save hours and hours of time with reporting, financial tracking, invoicing, and other automated features. In addition, your employees can focus on interaction with customers and help you to grow your business.
Each accounting software package has its own pros and cons, and it’s only the matter of how much money you can afford to spend on your software and which problems your company wants to solve.
We hope that our depth overview of accounting softwares and their special features will help you to make the right decision.