Top Apps to Help You Set and Manage a Small Business Budget
In today’s technology-driven age, more and more people are working from home on their small business or as a freelancer than ever before. There are plenty of benefits to this type of work set up, including the flexibility in hours and location, the ability to work around family life, and the money saved in commuting to or leasing an office. However, when it comes to finances it can be tricky trying to set and stick to a small business budget by yourself, with no corporation behind you to worry about the cash flow.
This is, however, where the many top financial and time management apps on the market can come in handy. From those which help you create a small business budget, to those which make it easier to keep track of expenses or the time spent on each project, there is something available for every need and all at zero or low cost. Read on for some great apps you can consider downloading for your small business budget needs today.
One handy app that makes it easier than ever to keep track of business expenses and ensure you’re staying within your budget is Expensify. Available for both iOS and Android devices, this system will save you lots of time which is normally needed to track, keep record of, and upload expenses, while also making it simpler to see where your budget is at day by day. The tech automatically uploads expenses while you’re away from the office, whether you’ve just attended a lunch with clients, paid for some office stationery, or booked a flight.
Expensify links up to your credit or debit cards and then immediately notes any new charges that are incurred, and submits them to an expense report. Paper receipts are also covered, as all you need to do is take a photo of each one on the camera on your smartphone, and then sync this with the Expensify app. From here, the tech will automatically extract the data it needs from the image, and upload the details to the latest report for you to check whenever you need to.
Intuit, the makers of the popular Quicken program, have also created a great finance app, Mint, that business owners should take advantage of. An award-winning and free program with customers around the world, Mint allows entrepreneurs to see all of their company’s financial data at a glance, with comprehensive info available at the click of a button and showcased via easy-to-read graphs and charts.
Mint uses a variety of sources, such as bank accounts, car loans, credit and debit accounts, bank loans and the like, to collect and collate financial business data. Cash transactions can also be entered into the app manually to keep the system up to date.
You can use the tech (available for both Android and iOS gadgets) to understand where money is spent in your business; to categorize all the expenses; to set up alerts to will notify you if budget limits are being approached; and to generate reminders for yourself to pay invoices as due dates draw near.
The app is fantastic for any entrepreneur who wants to be able to track expenses, set and adhere to a budget, and just generally manage their business cashflow more effectively. You can also use it to set savings goals for the organization, and to receive regular savings tips from the app about relevant ways to cut costs. For example, Mint can send suggestions on savings accounts that are paying better rates of interest, or alternative credit cards which have lower fees.
Do you operate any type of business that requires you to keep track of the amount of minutes or hours that you spend on each project or for each individual client? If so, you should make use of a time-tracking program to ensure that you don’t miss out on billing any of your valuable time and maximizing your revenue. One such option is Toggl, an app that makes it incredibly easy to keep an eye on working hours, whether you’re at home, the office, or elsewhere.
This time-tracking software uses just one click of a button to record when a certain task or meeting starts and finishes. You can also use it to analyze how long typical jobs take during the working day if you want to get an idea of what to quote for new work, or if you want to try to reduce the amount of time spent on your day-to-day tasks so that you can be more productive.
Toggl, helpfully, does not need to access the Internet to work either, which can be handy if you want to spend some time on projects distraction-free at a park, in a coffee shop, or some other location. The app simply keeps on tracking the time you spend on tasks while you’re offline, and then syncs this new data once you are again connected to the Internet.
One of my personal favorite tools is Freshbooks. Freshbooks is a great accounting system for freelancers that allows you to send professional looking invoices, track payments, track business expenses, and track your billable time all in one program. You can also share access to your information, all or only a portion, with you tax professional or accountant, which really helps come tax time.
It’s clear that technology has really changed the field of small business.
Have you ever used any of these tools to help your small business budget?