How to manage your business finances

Simplifying your bookkeeping with software options

Today, we’re diving headfirst into the world of bookkeeping, and we’ll explore what options there are to help you keep it all organized.

After all, the KEY to a stress free & confident tax season (yes, it is possible) is having a solid system in place. This allows you to have everything organized & up to date all year round so you can avoid the last minute scramble of throwing everything together.

I’ll discuss the top bookkeeping software options, receipt management tools, and wrap it up with some sage advice. So, grab your coffee and let’s dive in!

How to manage your boutique finances

Bookkeeping Systems to Manage Your Business Finances


If you are just starting out, you MAY be able to get by with a simple spreadsheet to help you track everything.


Now, I love a good spreadsheet. But I DONT love them as a bookkeeping system. The number one reason is because you have to manually input everything, and there’s not much available for reporting or reviewing purposes. 

It’s also easy to accidentally miss or overlook something. So, while yes, it can be a good short term solution, you want to consider upgrading to a software as soon as you start getting a higher volume of transactions you are having to record.


A good bookkeeping software will have automation features that will help you spend less time, and have greater accuracy in your bookkeeping. Let’s look at a couple popular software options:


1. QuickBooks Online:


QuickBooks Online (QBO) is by far my personal favorite, and it is the most popular option among United States business owners. In my opinion, it’s the most user friendly option out there. 

You can connect it to most bank & credit card accounts so all of your transactions will automatically pull into QBO, and you can assign a category to that transaction in a simple click. 

If you have regularly recurring transactions (monthly subscriptions, vendors you regularly purchase from, etc…) you can even set up rules so QBO remembers how these should automatically be categorized.

If you wanna check it out, you can use this link to get 30% off your first 6 months!


2. Xero:


Xero is a software that has a growing popularity in the US, and I believe it’s actually the #1 software in other parts of the world. It is a lower cost software, but I’ve found it to be a little more “clunky” and not as user friendly. 

For me, it had a greater learning curve than QBO did, but it does have the same features as far as being able to connect your popular bank & credit card accounts, and having it remember how you’ve typically categorized similar transactions in the past.


3. Wave:


Wave is a great budget friendly option, as it’s FREE! There are going to be limited automation & reporting features, but it does connect to several popular bank & credit card accounts so it may be able to save you some time if you’re debating between this & a spreadsheet. 


Receipt Management Tools to Manage Your Business Finances


Another important component that goes along with bookkeeping is receipt management, or simply keeping your receipts organized. You really should have some type of “proof” that goes along with every single transaction in your business to be able to show what you purchased in case you are ever audited.


If you’re old school, you can save the physical COPIES (not the originals – the thermal ink will fade with time) of your receipts and invoices in a filing cabinet system.


Another good system is to save them in a Google Drive folder. Create sub folders for each year, and then sub folders in there for each vendor. I also recommend using a similar naming convention so you’ll be able to tell what each receipt is for without actually opening it to view it. Something like “2023.10.31 Costco – Office Supplies”.


If you’re interested in using a software to help organize your receipts digitally, there are a couple popular options out there. These are the ones I’m familiar with, but I know there are others out there as well.


Both of these have the ability to integrate with at least one of the bookkeeping software I listed above, so an image of the receipts will actually be attached to the transaction record in your bookkeeping software.


1. Hubdoc:


HubDoc is my preferred solution, and it’s what I use in my own business. You can take pictures of physical receipts and upload through the app, forward emails with receipts attached, or upload directly to HubDoc in a web browser.


It connects to both QBO and Xero, and it can “read” your receipts and automatically populate the date, vendor name, and amount of most receipts to save you time. It will also remember how you’ve categorized receipts for that vendor before, so you can quickly review and “publish” to your software. This will automatically create the transaction in your software without you having to do anything else!


Since HubDoc is owned by Xero, you will get a free subscription if you choose the Xero bookkeeping software, otherwise there is a small subscription fee.


2. QBO Receipts:


QBO Receipts is a feature within QuickBooks Online. It works very similar to HubDoc, but it unfortunately does not do quite as good of a job to memorize and auto fill regularly recurring transaction. But, this is included with any QBO subscription level, so there is no additional cost.


How to have a stress free tax season:


In the world of bookkeeping, staying organized is key to an “easy” tax season without any stress or anxiety. By setting up a system to easily organize all your transactions & save your receipts, you will be ready for taxes in no time!

Schedule some time every Monday morning to work on your bookkeeping so you can stay on top of it, and just get it out of the way before the busy week begins.


If you want help getting your system setup using Quickbooks Online, and a customized training so you know EXACTLY what to do and when to do it, then apply to work with me today to claim one your 1:1 setup & training services.


Trust me, your future self will thank you when tax season rolls around.


Here’s to finding your own version of freedom,

Hi, I'm Megan!

Bookkeeping for the retail industry has some unique complexities that take extra time to manage to ensure accuracy. At Finding Freedom Financial Services, I provide done-for-you bookkeeping services for boutique owners that accurately track these complexities for you so you can have more time and focused energy to dedicate to running your stores. If you’re ready to get your time back, apply to work with me today!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *