Whether you are managing finances for your small business or filing taxes, you will need to find a method to save you time and money. Receipts from your purchases are likely to get lost in a sea of documents and miscellaneous papers, and physical documents can get damaged or destroyed.
Converting your printed receipts and documents into digital files can solve these problems, and receipt management software is the best assistant. A receipt management app is a great way to keep your receipts stored and organized digitally. Some receipt management apps include online tools that allow you to consolidate your receipts and access them from anywhere. This article can get your feet wet with receipt management apps and why it is important to your business.
1. What is receipt management?
Receipt management is a fundamental aspect of general accounting. In personal finance, receipts are a method of tracking spending habits, and it goes the same way with businesses of any size. Businesses also use receipts to track revenue generation. The term “receipt management” refers to the practice of organizing, filing, and profiting by keeping an accurate and complete record of your receipts.
Most receipt management apps work the same way. You only need to download them onto your cell phone and use them to take pictures of your receipts. The OCR (Optical Character Recognition) technology digitalizes all the text and numbers on those receipts and stores digital versions of them in a filing system. By scanning paper receipts and creating a digital version, you can retrieve your receipts anytime by searching with keywords and filters.
2. Why is receipt management important?
Many businesses, especially small and medium-sized enterprises (SME), are dealing with up to hundreds of receipts per day. Keeping an accurate record of those receipts is a daunting task if you only rely on physical copies and traditional filing. Using a receipt tracking system will help you in:
- Filing receipts: Filing receipts will be much easier with a digital filing system. You can use a receipt capture application to create a digital copy of the receipts and back them up off-site to ensure no information is lost. You can keep your receipts chronologically or in categorical subfolders for quick reference.
- Finding tax deductions: Grouping receipts by category will be beneficial for businesses when tax time arrives. Receipt tracking apps allow accountants to find tax deductions quickly and easily.
- Auditing: Receipt management is crucial to making audits quicker if your business is ever audited. The IRS can easily verify the accuracy of all deduction claims and confirm reported revenues.
Read more: A Basic Guide To Business Audits
3. 5 best receipt tracker apps for businesses of all sizes
There are many receipt tracker apps available that you can choose from. However, the choice depends on your business. If you want to focus on expense management, rely on corporate cards, and need fast employee reimbursement options, Expensify will be the best choice. On the contrary, if you need help scanning a box of old receipts and business documents, Shoeboxed will be a better fit. You can decide which one is the best receipt tracker app with our top five receipt tracker apps.
Expensify: Best receipt tracker app for traveling
Platforms: iOS, Android, web browsers
Price: From $5/month
Expensify is a cloud-based receipt tracker app for iOS, Android, and web browsers. This receipt scanner is portable, online with a cloud-based system, so you don’t need to worry about the expense reports and file receipts taking up space on your device.
Expensify is extremely helpful when you regularly have meetings or business trips to different parts of the world. Expensify saves you from stuffing post-trip receipts into your luggage when you are on the go. All you need to do is take pictures of your paper receipts with your smartphone, submit and be done with them. Expensify will automatically pull out the charges. From there, you can associate the charge with an expense report. If you use company credit cards frequently, you can use Expensify to import those expenses from the cards. By this, you will no longer have to go through your statements at the end of each trip. To sum up, if you are looking for the best receipt tracker app to manage travel expenses, Expensify is the best choice.
- Shoeboxed: Best receipt tracker app for tax season
Platforms: iOS, Android
Price: Starting at $18/month
Shoeboxed is an outsourced receipt-scanning service that converts paper receipts into organized digital copies on your behalf. It is suitable for accountants, freelancers, and small businesses who are drowning in physical receipts. This receipt management software is one of the most versatile options on this list as it doubles as a receipt scanner and manager. With Shoeboxed, you can mail your receipts to a Shoeboxed facility to have them scanned and organized. If you prefer not to send physical receipts to a third-party receipt scanning facility, you can upload your receipt via mobile app or email.
If you are a sole proprietor, an LLC holder, or a freelancer, you may be able to write off expenses. But when tax time arrives, how do you sort through it all with your accountants? In this case, Shoeboxed would be the best option. It allows you to scan receipts and keep track of your mileage for tax reporting purposes. It also gives you the ability to specify which expenses are deductible, making it the ideal tool for tax time. You can create expense reports and export them to your colleagues or tax preparer right from your phone. You will finally get those receipts off your desk and into action with Shoeboxed.
Neat: Best receipt tracker app for bookkeeping
Platforms: iOS, Android
Price: From $25/month
If your target is to keep your books in better order, Neat is the best choice for you. You can use this app to scan and upload receipts, but Neat will take booking to the next level. It will connect your bank accounts, credit cards, and loan payments to Neat Receipts for more accurate expense tracking. It will also itemize your expenses line by line on each receipt, match receipts to your invoices and bank statements for clearer financial reconciliation. One of Neat’s great advantages is that it brings unlimited document storage. You can upload, sort, and organize as many non-financial documents as you want.
Furthermore, Neat’s expense management data connect with accounting software (like QuickBooks) and tax software (H&R Block’s and TurboTax). You will no longer need to enter manually any of your expense reports, non-financial documents, itemized receipts as long as you logged them on Neat.
Smart Receipts: Best receipt tracker app for multi-format reports
Platforms: iOS, Android
Price: From $9.99/year
Smart Receipts is also a great choice for frequent business travelers because it stores and categorizes your expenses by trip. You can photograph and upload receipts or generate a text receipt, add comments for a more detailed explanation of what each expense entails.
Also, if you don’t travel a lot for work, Smart Receipts is still a great help. You will delineate the report by date rather than by trip so that you can track your business expenses over any given period.
One more huge plus for Smart Receipts is that it allows you to export your reports in any format – PDFs, ZIPz, CSVs, and more. However, this app will not automatically sync with your accounting software. Instead, when you generate expense reports, you will have to add them manually to your QuickBook or Xero account.
Wave Receipts: The most affordable accounting software
Platforms: iOS, Android
Price: Free for accounting and invoicing
If you plan to minimize cost as much as possible, Wave Receipts is the best receipt scanning software. Wave Receipts integrates with other free Wave products, but it also has a drawback: It only integrates with Wave Accounting, not QuickBooks or Xero. To track expenses alongside scanning receipts, you will need to sign up for Wave Accounting and Wave Receipts. Unlike comprehensive apps like Expensify, Wave Receipts focuses on receipts only.
Transforming your paper receipts into digital files and expense reports saves you from spending hours hunting through papers for information or organizing paper receipts into a logical sequence. Cloud services, mobile apps, and receipt tracking apps can automatically perform these tasks, increasing the accuracy of your finances and helping you keep track of your expenses.
These are our five favorite receipt tracking apps. If you’d like to suggest any other receipt management software, let us know by sharing a comment!