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The 7 Best Small Business Accounting Apps

Updated Nov 08, 2023

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Mobile apps allow you to take parts of your life with you wherever you go, including your business. Accounting apps, in particular, help business owners keep tabs on company finances while away from the office and accomplish basic accounting tasks, such as capturing receipts for expense reports, creating and sending invoices and reconciling transactions all on a mobile device. 

The accounting features you can expect vary from app to app and, sometimes, the Android and iOS versions differ too. However, most are companion mobile apps that are included as part of a paid subscription for online accounting software, although there are stand-alone options as well. You’ll have to weigh these factors as well as the pros and cons of using an app for accounting to begin with, before determining which tool is right for your business.

TipTip

The best accounting software isn’t only accessible when you’re on your computer. Providers that also supply mobile apps ensure you can track your business’s finances no matter where you are.

Best accounting apps for small businesses

Below, you’ll find our top seven picks for the best small business accounting apps. All of these vendors have respectable products. It’s just a matter of deciding which app best meets your needs and budget.

1. QuickBooks

QuickBooks

QuickBooks produces one of the most popular mobile accounting apps for small businesses. It’s a companion app to QuickBooks Online, which is available for a free 30-day trial and costs $15 a month for the entry-level version. You can download the app for free once you’ve subscribed to a QuickBooks Online plan. See a complete breakdown of the available packages in our detailed QuickBooks Online accounting software review.

QuickBooks app features

A clean interface and practical functionality make QuickBooks Online and its app the ideal combination for business owners who want access to comprehensive accounting tools on any device. The software subscription comes loaded with features, most of which you can use on the mobile app.

The basic functions include the ability to manage expenses by taking photos of receipts. You can also use the app to generate invoices, add and search customer contact information, view reports, track invoices and reconcile transactions. [Related article: Which Version of QuickBooks Should You Use?]

Editor’s note: Looking for the right accounting software for your business? Fill out the below questionnaire to have our vendor partners contact you about your needs.

If you’re an independent contractor, the QuickBooks Self-Employed app is a good alternative. This is the companion app to the Self-Employed version of QuickBooks Online. The self-employed app has several of the same features as the regular accounting app, such as expense tracking and receipt image capture, but it also includes a GPS-enabled mileage tracker and a tax-filing assistant that integrates with TurboTax.

QuickBooks app pricing

  • Simple Start: $30 per month
  • Essentials: $55 per month
  • Plus: $85 per month
  • Advanced: $200 per month

QuickBooks app platforms

The app is available on iOS and Android devices.

2. Xero

Xero’s cloud-based accounting software is comparable to QuickBooks in many ways but with a lower price. The platform has a number of advanced accounting features, which makes it a great option for midsize and large companies. However, the mobile app seems to have more issues than QuickBooks does and users often complain of bugs. Still, there is plenty to like about this offering.

Xero app features

One of the biggest advantages of signing up with Xero is that the mobile app allows unlimited users at all subscription levels. This is a significant perk for bigger companies since paying an additional charge per user adds up quickly. You can control the level of access employees have to your Xero account, so there is no need to worry about staffers having access to sensitive data.

You can use the app to create and send invoices, reconcile bank transactions and view any available bills. It also allows you to capture receipts and attach those receipts to an expense. Find out more about the software and app in our full Xero review.

Xero app pricing

  • Early: $13 per month
  • Growing: $37 per month
  • Established: $70 per month

Xero app platforms

The app is available for iOS and Android devices.

3. Sage Accounting

Sage accounting software

Sage might not boast the same name recognition as some other apps on this list, but it’s a good option and its functionality is consistent across the company’s computer software and mobile app. 

One of the biggest benefits of Sage is the vendor’s robust customer support. You can contact customer service through phone, chat or email. The company also provides users access to a knowledge base with articles, product documentation and news about recent software updates. Get more familiar with the vendor in our comprehensive Sage accounting software review.

Sage Accounting app features

One of the most unique features Sage offers on its mobile app is a chat function that lets you send texts to manage your transactions. This chat function can help you track receipts, log recent payments and check your current balance.

The mobile app also lets you reconcile bank transactions and create and send invoices. Once invoices are sent, you can monitor the payment status from the app and follow up on overdue payments. [Related article: Find the Best Invoice App for Your Small Business]

Sage Accounting app pricing

  • Sage Accounting Start: $10 per month
  • Sage Accounting: $25 per month 

Sage Accounting app platforms

The app is available on iOS and Android devices.

4. Zoho Books

Although not nearly as popular as the QuickBooks app, this companion app to Zoho Books is a great option for small business owners who want an accounting app with a lot of functionality. It’s been downloaded more than 1 million times and has more than 13,000 user reviews on Google Play — most of which rate the app highly. 

The Zoho Books accounting app is free to download and use alongside the Zoho Books accounting software, which has a 14-day free trial. Our full Zoho Books review details the different plans available. 

Zoho Books app features

Both the desktop software and app have a minimalistic interface that makes it easy to find the features you need. The app shares a lot of functionality with the computer software and allows you to set up notifications on your phone that update you instantly with customer activities, such as when invoices are viewed or paid.

The mobile dashboard shows you an overview of your account. From there, you can create and send estimates and invoices, record and categorize expenses and bills, send purchase orders, track billable time and download and print reports.

Zoho Books app pricing

  • Free: $0 for businesses with less than $50,000 in annual revenue
  • Standard: $15 per month
  • Professional: $40 per month
  • Premium: $60 per month
  • Elite: $120 per month
  • Ultimate: $240 per month

Zoho Books app platforms

The app is available for iOS and Android devices. 

5. FreshBooks

Freelancers and service-based small businesses that do a lot of invoicing will appreciate the FreshBooks Invoicing app. This companion app to the FreshBooks accounting software has been downloaded more than 500,000 times and has a high average rating across more than 5,000 user reviews. 

The app is free to download and has a 30-day free trial followed by a subscription fee starting at $8.50 per month. All tiers are explained in our FreshBooks accounting software review.

FreshBooks app features

Like the desktop software, the mobile app is easy to use and allows you to track billable time, snap photos of receipts and record expenses, create and send invoices, check invoice status, accept online payments and review payment records. One especially notable feature is the ability to chat with clients through the app and review your conversation history.

FreshBooks app pricing

  • Lite: $8.50 per month
  • Plus: $15 per month
  • Premium: $27.50 per month
  • Select: Custom pricing

FreshBooks app platforms

The app is available for iOS and Android devices. 

6. Book Keeper

Book Keeper’s accounting app has more than one million users and ranks highly among mobile accounting apps. 

The Book Keeper app — well-suited for accounting, goods and services tax (GST), invoicing and inventory — features a simple, straightforward design and immediate usability. The app is free to download and use for 14 days and then costs $70 per year for the vendor’s most basic plan.

Book Keeper app features

Many users who left positive reviews mentioned trying other accounting apps and being overwhelmed by the number of features and busy interface. In contrast, if you’re looking for a basic accounting and invoicing app that’s easy to use and has unique functionality, Book Keeper is a solid solution.

One of the app’s more impressive features is inventory management tools. It can track stock, generate barcodes and let you scan them with your phone’s camera. The downside of this app is that the video tutorials aren’t in English, and there isn’t a United States phone number for customer support (the company is headquartered in India). You’ll have to contact the vendor by email or live chat if you have questions or experience issues with the app.

Book Keeper app pricing

  • Single user, yearly: $70 annually
  • Single user, lifetime: $300
  • Two users, monthly: $14 per month
  • Two users, yearly: $105 annually
  • Two users, lifetime: $450
  • Three users, yearly: $140
  • Three users, lifetime: $600
  • Five users, monthly: $20 per month

Book Keeper app platforms

The app is available for iOS and Android devices.

7. Wave

Wave accounting software

Wave offers a free invoicing app for small businesses to help you track your revenue. It costs nothing to download and use, similar to Wave’s full accounting software. 

There are fees, however, if you use the app for credit card processing or bank payment processing. Additionally, if you use the company’s optional payroll services, there is a monthly flat rate and a per-employee fee. Learn more in our Wave Financial review.

Wave app features

Wave allows you to create, customize and send invoices to customers. You can monitor the status of invoices and see when they’ve been read, paid or become overdue. You’ll also receive notifications for these customer activities. 

You can use the app to send payment reminders and receipts as well. Invoices and revenue are recorded and backed up to your online Wave account.

Did You Know?Did you know

Apart from mobile accounting apps, the top expense trackers also let you manage expenses from your mobile device in real time.

Wave app pricing

As mentioned above, Wave’s accounting software is always free, although you will have to pay for add-on features like payroll if you so desire.

Wave app platforms

The app is available for iOS and Android devices.

The pros and cons of using an accounting app

Business accounting applications offer a wide range of benefits, from simplified bookkeeping processes to real-time financial insights. However, like any technology, they also come with their drawbacks. Below are some of the pros and cons of using an accounting app.

Pros of business accounting apps

  1. Improve efficiency: Accounting applications automate various processes, such as recording transactions, generating invoices and reconciling bank statements. This level of automation can save you tons of time, especially when you’re on the go.
  2. Increase accuracy: With traditional manual bookkeeping, there’s always a risk of human error, which can lead to miscalculations and discrepancies in financial records. However, by taking your books online and utilizing computerized programs (even mobile ones), you drastically reduce the likelihood of these errors.
  3. Save money: Accounting software vendors often use a subscription-based model. With this setup, you only pay for the features you need and can usually cancel your subscription risk-free. Plus, the platform’s mobile app typically is included in your package at no extra charge. Whether you’re on a limited budget or simply want to test out a platform for a while, these plans give you flexibility.
  4. Scale with your business: As your business grows, your accounting needs may evolve. Accounting software and their accompanying mobile applications are designed to scale with your organization. They can accommodate an increase in users or data without requiring significant upgrades or additional hardware. This flexibility allows your company to adapt its accounting systems to your ever-changing needs.

Cons of business accounting apps

  1. Maintaining app updates: Accounting software is constantly evolving and new updates and features are regularly released. To ensure your app has the latest security and bug fixes, you’ll need to enable automatic updates or manually update your application across your devices on a regular basis.
  2. Learning a new program: You or your team might have limited accounting knowledge and learning a new application can seem like a daunting task. However, most accounting apps come with user-friendly interfaces — and intuitive navigation — to make getting acclimated to the new program much easier.
  3. Contacting customer support: The customer support centers for some applications are much better than others. For this reason, it’s vital to research the app you’re considering to ensure that it has the support you and your team may need for resolving any issues.
  4. Managing large files: At times, accounting software may have difficulty processing or sending large files. To work around this, try to ensure that when you’re dealing with sizable documents, you have a stable connection on your mobile device.
Key TakeawayKey takeaway

There are several upsides to using an accounting app, including improved efficiency, increased accuracy, scalability and lower costs. However, you should consider minor disadvantages too, such as potential challenges accessing customer support.

The convenient side of business accounting

Accounting apps simplify your business’s financial processes and keep you up-to-date and organized no matter where you are. To find the perfect app for your small business, consider the required number of users, key features you desire and your budget. With the right choice, you’ll gain full control over your company’s money from both desktop and mobile devices on any day, at any time.

Shayna Waltower and Jamie Johnson contributed to this article.

Adam Uzialko
Business Strategy Insider and Senior Editor
Adam Uzialko, senior editor of Business News Daily, is not just a professional writer and editor — he’s also an entrepreneur who knows firsthand what it’s like building a business from scratch. His experience as co-founder and managing editor of a digital marketing company imbues his work at Business News Daily with a perspective grounded in the realities of running a small business. Since 2015, Adam has reviewed hundreds of small business products and services, including contact center solutions, email marketing software and text message marketing software. Adam uses the products, interviews users and talks directly to the companies that make the products and services he covers. He specializes in digital marketing topics, with a focus on content marketing, editorial strategy and managing a team.
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