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Zoho Books Review
Effective, comprehensive invoicing features
Inventory tracking features
Time tracking for projects
Clean & clear interface
No payroll integration
While Zoho may not have the name recognition of FreshBooks or QuickBooks, it’s worth a look as it provides heavy-duty invoicing, reporting, and time tracking tools for your small business. The invoicing features in Zoho Books are superior to a lot of the other accountancy packages, offering a good degree of customization and the ability to set automated processes.
Zoho has a bunch of sites for streamlining and managing business processes. For your accountancy needs, Zoho Books provides the answers. There are three Zoho Books plans. The Basic plan is $9 per month and includes invoice, expenses, time tracking, and banking facilities plus you can add up to 25 contacts, one user, and one accountant access. The Standard plan is $19 per month and also includes billing features, facilities for multiple currencies, setup of recurring transactions, and up to 500 contacts, three users and one accountant. The Professional plan is $29 per month and adds purchase order, sales order, and inventory tools plus unlimited contacts and users. You get a shorter trial with Zoho Books – just 14 days.
Invoices & Billing
Invoice creation – Choose a design from the template gallery and then customize it, using your logo to make your invoices stand out. From the Standard plan upwards you can create invoices in different currencies, with the exchange rate updated in real time. Email invoices or send them by snail mail.
Invoicing – See all the invoices you have created on one page, with a status for each one so you can act on any overdues. When you send estimates these can be converted to invoices with a simple click. And you can set recurring invoices to save time on admin each month. Clients can pay you online when you connect a payment gateway. We like the automatic reminders and notifications you can set up to send when an invoice becomes overdue by a certain amount. You can also set up thank you notes and other notes for prompt payment. The invoicing features in Zoho Books are comprehensive but if you want a simple, free invoicing app then Zoho offers a basic invoicing program designed for freelancers and small businesses, with fewer features.
Inventory – Inventory tracking in Zoho is also effective and easy to handle. You can set various levels of maintenance and adjustments so that stocks are maintained and you can see what you've sold and when. Create purchase orders, sales orders, and bills, credit notes, and invoices.
Using Zoho you can break up your expenses into different categories, making it easier to stay on top of where your money is going and also to help with tax deductions. You can also take pictures of your paper receipts and attach them to the expenses section in Zoho Books.
Zoho helps if you work on multiple projects at the same time, or you have employees working on different projects, by giving you some basic time tracking features. These include a timer to clock the amount of hours you work on a project, assign different tasks to different employees, and give role-based access to the view people have of the timesheets. You and employees can track time from any location, direct from a phone or mobile device.
Zoho features a wide range of reports from the basic dashboard snapshot of your business's total incomings and outgoings, to profit and loss, expenses overviews and reports, balance sheets, tax summaries, and more – basically, all you could need for a small business without going into too much detail.
Zoho Books is online, which means you can access your accounts, invoices, and transactions from any mobile device or your Windows PC.
Browsers and data centers are connected securely using TLS 1.2 protocol encryption, 256 bit/128 bit keys and SHA 256 certificates. Physical security is also given priority, with data centers protected from attack through comprehensive security measures.
Ease of use
If you’re familiar with using QuickBooks you’d be forgiven for thinking you’re still working with this program – the interface of Zoho Books is very similar. Overall, Zoho Books is very easy to manage, with tabs down the side of the screen giving you your options, plus navigable links to working areas where you can access tools like invoice creation, time tracking, and reports.
Help & support
Zoho has a good variety of support and help resources at hand when you need to ask a question or figure something out. Send an email, call during the week, or browse the topics available on the website including user guide, frequently asked questions, blog posts and forums. You can also register for a webinar.
Zoho Books is a good package for small businesses. The big downside? You can’t integrate payroll, but you may or may not need to do that in your business.
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