Billing System: How to Pick the Best Software for Your Business
Do you already have a set billing process? Do you already use specific invoicing software? What about a combination of billing and invoicing software? If you’re not benefiting from billing software already, it might be time to explore your options.
Billing systems help with expense tracking, taking online payments, and limiting billing errors. There are a range of other benefits and advantages, as well. So, where should you start? Well, that’s why we put together this guide.
Keep reading to learn all about billing software options and how to choose the best one for your business.
Table of Contents
What Is a Billing System?
A billing system is a procedure used by a company to charge and invoice clients, to put it simply. It’s a software that automates the process of taking payments and sending out regular invoices. As well, tracking expenses and tracking invoices are frequently included in billing systems.
Billing software ensures that your clients can easily pay for your products and services. For small businesses, billing services are essential because they provide a range of benefits.
For example, some of the reasons a billing system is important for your small business include:
- Payments are subject to an administrative oversight, control, and tracking
- Transparency in payments and payment agreements between your small business and your clients
- The capacity to more simply control your company’s cash flow than manual invoicing
- Automated billing that gathers prices and estimations to automatically decrease errors
- The capacity to improve reporting procedures and company processes
Top Billing Systems for Small Businesses
There are different types of billing systems for small businesses that offer a range of features. The most important thing to consider is what benefits you need to get out of it. We’ll outline some of the top billing and invoicing programs available in this article. These enable you to optimize your transactions and automate your invoicing procedures.
Others include comprehensive accounting systems, while some of them are standalone invoicing apps. We emphasized their benefits and drawbacks to make it easier for you to select which option is best for your business. After reading this article, you will be able to easily understand their advantages and even be able to narrow down your alternatives.
FreshBooks can address the most crucial accounting requirements for small businesses. This is because it makes collecting details easier and monitors everything in a very dependable way. Even non-tech-knowledgeable individuals will find it simple to use because of its intuitive user interface. With FreshBooks, you can brand invoices, establish due dates and impose late fines. You can also send reminders when payments are past due and manage billing.
In addition, FreshBooks keeps track of your billing history, generates profit and loss reports, and manages tax matters. There is a fantastic free trial plan available if you want to test out this option first. To determine whether the software satisfies your demands, you can test out all the functions for a while without cost.
The biggest benefits of using FreshBooks include:
- Integrated financial management. You may handle invoices and collect payments with FreshBooks on the same platform.
- Interface that’s simple and clear. You can automate job prioritizing and facilitate collaboration with a contemporary, user-friendly interface.
- Whole suite from invoicing to payment. You can set due dates for invoices, monitor invoicing, apply late fees, and collect money while making sure all tax obligations are met.
- Monitoring spending. You may easily record expenses, keep tabs on them every day, and utilize them to negotiate reimbursement settlements.
- Strong reporting. The platform processes data, creates balance sheets and spending reports and summarizes taxes.
- Reasonable pricing. Payments are solely based on the number of users that are actively using the system each month.
- Integrations with numerous third-party applications and top payment card issuers.
- Full-featured mobile applications. By giving access to documents on Android and iOS devices, FreshBooks helps take finances outside of the office.
Businesses can choose from a wide range of integrations with business and financial systems thanks to Xero. It’s a combined billing and accounting solution. It provides some of the most complete payment options available. This allows for automated payment reminders to significantly reduce administrative burden.
You should be sure you will use the features included in the higher-level plans, though, as it is one of the more expensive billing alternatives. The system’s reports sometimes fail to combine manual data with automatically generated data.
The biggest benefits of using Xero include:
- You can fully integrate all your current payment integrations. This includes being able to integrate with platforms such as Stripe and PayPal.
- The mobile app is fully-integrated, meaning you can access all your important data and information no matter where you are.
- The platform provides fairly decent live chat support. If you’re having any trouble with the system, you can easily reach out to customer support to help get a fix as quickly as possible.
The main disadvantages of using Xero include:
- While the basic plan serves a few purposes, it is very limited. This means that if you want to benefit from all Xero has to offer you’re likely going to have to purchase one of the higher-tier plans.
- There have been issues using Xero to generate 1099 forms for any freelancers or independent contractors who work for you.
The simplicity of use of Sage Business Cloud Accounting is well-known. It’s an add-on solution created to enable integration with the cloud. This helps with enhancing its accessibility and securing its data storage. The system includes a robust dashboard that can provide images reflecting your transactions. As a result, this gives you a broad overview of how your firm is doing.
It may be used to access customer data and record transactions from any iPhone or Android device and can run on any smartphone. Quickly generate quotes that may be emailed to clients right away. These clients can also be reached directly through the app. The software provides spending and income tracking for small enterprises. Its dashboard is incredibly intuitive in addition to being simple to use.
The biggest benefits of using Sage include:
- Suitable for small businesses. Features include expenditure management, accounting, compliance management, and project accounting capabilities. Sage Business Cloud Accounting is made with small businesses in mind.
- Information on accounting is readily available. Using a single dashboard, the tool makes it simple for you to access all of your accounting data. This enables you to always be informed about receivables and cash flow.
- Management of taxes. On the basis of the details of your transaction, it can determine the applicable taxes.
- Logical user interfaces. The software’s user interface is simple to use and has all the functions that are required right away.
The main disadvantages of using Sage include:
- It’s solely an internet-based application. When connected to a slow Internet connection, the system may experience lags.
- It does not carry out backups directly. Direct account backups are not capable of being created by Sage Business Cloud. Report printing is required for backing up.
Zoho Invoice performs a variety of tasks. This helps assist small and midsize enterprises with invoicing and expenditure management. The platform’s templates enable quick and easy development of quotes and invoices with a professional look.
The templates may be transmitted through a variety of channels and are configurable. This allows users to add logos and company colors. These include the client interface for the system, SMS, and email. Zoho Invoice may be configured to automatically send payment reminders and track the status of each invoice.
It’s more than just an invoicing solution. It also provides a feature for tracking unbilled hours as well as work hours and their associated financial worth. This ensures that the data are accurate. Users can auto-scan receipts using the platform’s cost tracker, which focuses on unbilled expenses. Zoho Invoice interacts with a number of payment gateways. These include PayPal, Stripe, and Forte, to execute transactions.
The biggest benefits of using Zoho Invoice include:
- Adaptable templates. With the help of the template collection in Zoho Invoice, you can create quotes and invoices that look good. Multiple currencies are supported by the invoicing.
- Intuitive projections. The platform takes into account your prices, discounts, and any applicable terms and conditions. Additionally, it displays your estimated history in case earlier designs receive approval.
- Comprehensive client portal. Through the client interface provided, your customers may complete all of their transactions. These consist of examining invoices and sending payments.
- Integrated automated payments. More than 10 payment gateways can be integrated with Zoho Invoice. Recurring payments can be charged automatically and notifications can be fully automated.
The main disadvantages of using Zoho Invoice include:
- Lacks live assistance. The platform doesn’t offer chat assistance, so any issues with utilizing it won’t be remedied right away.
- Irregular custom reports. The system’s reports occasionally fail to combine manual data with automatically generated data.
Benefits of Using a Billing System
Using a billing system for your business is going to bring a wide range of benefits. It can all depend on the type of business you operate and the industry you’re in. Yet, no matter what type of business you do, your processes will become more efficient.
It helps to determine the workflows you’re going to end up using for creating and organizing invoices. As well, it will contribute to everything from payment processing to project management.
Here are some of the main benefits of using a billing system:
- You can keep all your billing information in a single place
- It makes for easier auditing
- It can help lead to better and longer customer relationships
- It will provide your business with actionable insights and valuable analytics
What to Consider When Choosing a Billing System
The most important thing to consider when choosing a billing system is what you want to get out of it. Are you going to need a general billing solution or one that is a bit more specialized? Another thing to keep in mind is the level of customer support that’s available to you.
If you’re already using other software systems, it can be worth exploring options that allow for easy integration. These can range from payment gateways, invoice templates, and even a dedicated CRM. You’re also going to want to consider how user-friendly the software is.
If you’re not very tech-savvy, investing in a platform with a steep learning curve can end up costing you time and money. This could mean you look towards a choice that’s more intuitive and offers basic functions for what you need most.
Receiving payment is crucial to making sure that your business works properly. One of the greatest ways to issue invoices and collect money for goods or services given is to have a well-organized billing system. Small business owners can handle payments, invoices, and other accounting needs with software like FreshBooks.
Additionally, the less time you spend on back-office duties, the more time you have to focus on developing your company, which is what counts most.
FAQs About Billing Systems
How do I choose a billing system?
You should choose a billing system that fits and suits your business needs. There are options out there that are more complex and offer additional functionality. But there are also basic choices that provide basic services for what you need.
What are typical billing processes?
Why do we need a billing system?
A billing system lets you easily control costs. You can also benefit from the range of automations it can include, such as reminders and follow-up emails.
Is Excel used for billing?
You can use Excel for billing and creating your own invoices. However, it can be incredibly time-consuming to do, so investing in software such as FreshBooks will make your life a whole lot easier. You can send professional invoices and accept payments online.