Most virtual assistants are NOT certified accountants. However, if you are running your own company independently, you need to understand the basics of managing your finances. From staying on top of invoices, tracking outgoing vs. incoming money, and remembering to pay yourself (our favorite part!) things can get hectic. This is where, again, we LOVE online tools. There are several out there that help freelancers easily handle the financial side of their business. We explore some of our personal favorites below (in no particular order!)
- Wave Accounting - Wave is a Cloud-based invoicing, accounting, payroll, payments and personal finance app for freelancers, contractors and entrepreneurs. We love Wave because their focus is on serving companies with 9 employees or less. And if you're a business of just one - you're in luck - Because the accounting and invoicing portion of the software is totally free! You can upgrade for direct deposit and a few other features for $19 a month! Check out the pricing options here.
- Freshbooks - Like Wave, Freshbooks also caters to small and independent businesses. On the website, Freshbooks boasts being "simple and intuitive, so accounting isn’t intimidating." And it's true. Their dashboard is user-friendly, you can send invoices in one click, and you can easily track your spending. Another feature we really love is the timer function; track your client hours by clocking in and out when working on projects. Freshbooks offers a 30 day free trial and starts at $12.95 a month.
- FreeAgent - If you are working out of the UK, you should definitely check out FreeAgent. They provide online accounting software, invoice and expense management, project management, sales tax and more. What we really enjoy about FreeAgent is that they offer fantastic support and a wonderful blog with a ton of great tips! FreeAgent offers a 30 day free trial that you can access here.
- Paypal - One of the best reasons to use Paypal is simply for it's popularity, everyone uses it so it's convenient for you and your clients. Paypal's business accounts allow you to integrate payment into your website, accept credit cards, direct deposit, and create custom payment codes/buttons. There's no monthly fee for Paypal, however they do take 2.9% + $0.30 of your online payments and invoices. If you're interested in getting your own business account, you can learn more here!
So there you go! You don't need to be a finance whiz to make sure your company is staying in the green. 🙂
What other tools do you use to manage finances for your freelance business? Share with us in the comments below!
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YANB and Profit First is a killer combination for ensuring profitability, sustainability and clarity around your cashflow. Wave and Freshbooks are great for invoicing!