If you are a small business, you will be needing accounting software that’s easy to use and inexpensive.
However, it can be overwhelming when trying to choose the right software for your business, especially if you don’t have experience in using accounting software. Just because your accountant or bookkeeper recommends a particular software, doesn’t mean that this is the best choice for you. A lot of accountants and bookkeepers recommend only one software to all of their clients, receiving kickbacks for doing so. It’s important to choose a software that suits your needs, so that you’re not paying for all the extras you don’t need.
It’s important to keep in mind that when searching for the right accounting software, you need to source a program that is easy for you to use. You should be able to follow your earnings and your expenses, as knowing your bottom line at all times will be vital for your company.
What to look for in accounting software for a small business:
Think about why you need the software
First and foremost, you need to sit down and have a think about why you need your accounting software. What do you plan to use it for?
Apart from managing income and expenses, what other uses will you have? Will it mainly be used to pay your staff? Or perhaps raise purchase orders? Or maybe you will use it for asset management?
Make a list of why you need the software, in order of priority. This will help you to define what kind of accounting software will suit you and your small business.
Price of the software
As a small business, you probably won’t be seeking the most highly-priced software as you are unlikely to be able to afford the costs a huge organisation can.
Search for software targeted to small businesses, as they are usually more reasonably priced than software that is tailored to large corporations.
Sure, the software may not have all the bells and whistles the higher-priced programs have but do you really need software that can operate in 30 countries at once when all you have is a small operation in Australia?
Easy to use and set up
If you run a small business, it’s likely many people in your organisation will use the accounting software, even if they don’t specifically work in bookkeeping. In small businesses, employees often complete a large range of tasks, so the software should be able to be used by anyone, even if they have a small knowledge of bookkeeping.
Ability to manage your accounts
Your accounting software should be able to do basic accounting tasks too, such as create invoices, send out payment reminders and track payments. You should also be able to manually enter in payments and tally your earnings.
Link up your bank accounts
It makes life a lot easier for small businesses if your accounting software can also link to your business bank account, so you can download your statements directly through your software.
Process your payroll
You might have a team of two or perhaps a staff of 50. Whatever the size of your small business, if you can process your payroll through your accounting software then it’ll make your bookkeeping tasks a lot simpler.
Process payments both online and offline
Good accounting software for small businesses should have the capability for clients to process their payments both online and offline. This means they have the option of clicking on the invoice and paying you directly using an online system. To do this, you need to make sure your payment devices (credit card software and systems) are compatible with your accounting software.
Reporting on your financial statements
If you’re a small business, you’ll want your figures at your fingertips, so it’s important your accounting software can show you where you are making and losing money, publish your balance sheet and show you your cash flow.
We hope it’s now clearer as to what you, as a small business owner, need to look for in accounting software. If you’re ready to find out the best 3 options for you head over to our free analysis tool now!