Compare Accounting Software for Invoicing and Billing

For small business owners, effective invoicing is paramount to financial success. The right accounting software simplifies the invoicing process and brings many benefits, from improved cash flow to better client relationships. This article explores various aspects of accounting software with a unique focus on invoicing.

FeaturesQuickBooks OnlineFreshBooksZoho InvoiceSquare InvoicesChargebee
Pricing for InvoicingModerate-High (Comprehensive invoicing at a higher cost)Moderate (Affordable with essential invoicing features)Low (Free plan available, ideal for basic invoicing needs)Low (Free plan suitable for simple invoicing)High (Advanced invoicing for subscription models, higher cost)
Ease of Use in InvoicingModerate (Comprehensive but requires familiarization)High (User-friendly interface for easy invoicing)High (Simple and straightforward invoicing process)High (Intuitive invoicing, especially for existing Square users)Moderate (Robust features requiring more setup)
Mobile App for InvoicingHigh (Full-featured mobile invoicing)High (Convenient invoicing on the go)High (Mobile functionality for invoicing)Moderate (Basic mobile invoicing capabilities)Not Specified (Details on mobile invoicing not clear)
Automation in InvoicingHigh (Advanced automation for invoicing tasks)Moderate (Basic automation for efficient invoicing)Moderate (Automated reminders and recurring invoices)Moderate (Basic automation features)High (Sophisticated automation for subscription billing)
Tax Features in InvoicingHigh (Automated tax calculations for invoices)Moderate (Basic tax handling in invoices)Moderate (Simple tax features for invoices)Not Specified (Tax features in invoicing not detailed)Not Specified (Complex tax handling for subscriptions)
Project Management in InvoicingHigh (Detailed project billing and invoicing)High (Project time tracking and invoicing)Moderate (Basic project invoicing features)Low (Limited project management features)Not Specified (Focused more on subscription billing)
Customization in InvoicingHigh (Highly customizable invoices)Moderate (Customizable invoices with limitations)High (Flexible invoice customization)Moderate (Basic customization options)High (Extensive customization for billing models)
Integration for InvoicingHigh (Wide range of integrations for invoicing)Moderate (Integrates with key apps for invoicing)Moderate (Basic integration capabilities)Moderate (Good integration within Square ecosystem)High (Strong integration for subscription management)
Support for InvoicingHigh (Comprehensive support for invoicing queries)High (Dedicated support for invoicing issues)Moderate (Basic support with limitations)Moderate (Standard support for invoicing)High (Extensive support, especially for complex setups)

Note: The information in this table is based on general features and may vary based on specific plan details or updates from the software providers.

What This Table Means For You:

  • Best for Pricing: Zoho Invoice is the best choice. It offers a free invoicing option, making it highly accessible for startups and small businesses that need essential invoicing capabilities without a significant financial investment.
  • Pricing Definition: Pricing refers to the cost of using the software. It includes the initial cost, any recurring subscription fees, and additional costs for extra features or services.
  • Best for Ease of Use + User Interface: FreshBooks stands out for its ease of use and user interface, particularly for invoicing. Its intuitive design makes invoice creation and management straightforward, ideal for freelancers[1]  and small business owners who prioritize simplicity and efficiency in their invoicing processes.
  • Ease/User Interface Definition: Ease of use refers to how user-friendly and intuitive the software is. It assesses how easy the interface is to navigate, including the clarity of menus, ease of finding features, and the visual appeal of the software.
  • Best Mobile App: QuickBooks Online offers the best mobile app, with comprehensive invoicing features available. Its app allows users to manage invoices, track payments, and send reminders from anywhere, providing flexibility and convenience for busy professionals.
  • Mobile App Definition: The Mobile App column (above) indicates the availability of a mobile application for the software.
  • Best for Automation Features: QuickBooks Online excels in automation features for invoicing. It automates various tasks like invoice generation, payment tracking, and sending reminders, significantly streamlining the invoicing process and reducing manual effort.
  • Automation Definition: This evaluates the software’s ability to automate repetitive tasks such as invoicing, data entry, transaction categorization, and financial reporting.
  • Best for Tax Features: QuickBooks Online is the top choice for invoicing with integrated tax features. It automatically calculates and includes the appropriate taxes in invoices, ensuring accuracy and compliance, which is crucial for businesses dealing with various tax regulations.
  • Tax Definition: Tax features refer to the software’s capabilities in handling tax-related tasks, including automating tax calculations.
  • Best for Project Management: FreshBooks is particularly effective for project management. It allows for detailed tracking of billable hours and expenses and provides customizable invoicing tailored to different projects, enhancing client relationships and project transparency.
  • Project Mgmt. Definition: Project management refers to the ability to manage projects, including tracking project expenses and budget management for individual projects.
  • Best for Customization & Scalability: Chargebee shines in customization and scalability, especially for businesses with complex or evolving invoicing needs. It offers extensive customization options for subscription-based billing and can adapt to changing business models, making it ideal for growing businesses.
  • Customization Definition: Customization and scalability refer to how customizable the software is to a business’s specific needs and how well it can scale as the business grows.
  • Best for Integration: QuickBooks Online is the best choice for integration capabilities. It offers seamless integration with other business tools and services, providing a more integrated and comprehensive approach to invoicing and financial management.
  • Integration Definition: Integration refers to the software’s ability to integrate with other tools and systems, such as CRM software, e-commerce platforms, payroll systems, and banking services.
  • Best for Support: For support, especially in invoicing, QuickBooks Online offers comprehensive assistance. Its 24/7 support is invaluable for addressing complex invoicing queries and ensuring users can effectively manage their invoicing processes.
  • Support Definition: Support refers to the quality and availability of customer support provided by the software company.

Selecting the Right Software & Still Can’t Decide?

The right choice in software can transform your invoicing process from a routine task into a strategic asset. Each platform brings unique strengths, catering to diverse invoicing needs, from simplicity and affordability to comprehensive features and scalability. If you still cannot decide, consider the table below: “What is most important to you.”

Consider What Is Most Important to You:
Affordability:Small businesses must find cost-effective solutions with robust invoicing features without breaking the bank. Software like Zoho Invoice offers free plans, making it an excellent choice for starting a new business. On the other hand, platforms like QuickBooks Online provide more comprehensive invoicing features but at a higher cost. The key is to find a balance between affordability and functionality.
Ease of Use and Accessibility:A user-friendly interface in invoicing software can significantly reduce the time and effort spent on billing. Software like FreshBooks offers an intuitive invoicing system, allowing users to create and send invoices easily. This simplicity ensures that even those with minimal accounting knowledge can manage their invoicing efficiently.
Mobile App Functionality:Mobile apps provided by software like QuickBooks Online allow users to manage invoices, track payments, and send reminders from anywhere. This mobility is crucial for businesses that manage invoicing and payments outside the office.
Automation and Integration:Software that automates invoice generation, payment reminders, and follow-ups can significantly improve efficiency. Additionally, integration capabilities, such as those offered by QuickBooks Online, allow for seamless synchronization with other business tools, providing a more holistic view of finances.
Tax Preparation and Compliance Features:Efficient tax handling is a critical aspect of invoicing. Software like QuickBooks Online offers features that automatically calculate and include the appropriate taxes in invoices, ensuring compliance and accuracy. This feature is particularly beneficial for businesses dealing with complex tax scenarios.
Project and Client Management Capabilities:Effective invoicing software also plays a crucial role in project and client management. FreshBooks allows for detailed tracking of billable hours and customized invoicing for different projects.
Customization and Scalability:As your business grows, your invoicing needs will evolve. Software that offers customization and scalability, like Chargebee, can adapt to changing business models and expanding client bases. This adaptability ensures that your invoicing software remains valuable as your business develops.

Finally, What You Need to Know About Each Software Product

  • QuickBooks Online offers a comprehensive invoicing solution, ideal for small businesses looking for an all-in-one accounting and invoicing tool. Its positives include advanced automation, integrated tax features, robust mobile app functionality, and extensive integration capabilities. However, its more complex interface and higher price point can be challenging for smaller businesses or those just getting off to a start.
  • FreshBooks is highly user-friendly, making it an excellent choice for freelancers[1]  and small business owners[2]  who prioritize ease of use in invoicing. Its simple and intuitive interface and practical project management tools make invoicing straightforward. The downside is its limited scalability and fewer advanced features than more comprehensive platforms like QuickBooks Online.
  • Zoho Invoice is affordable, offering a free plan perfect for startups[3]  and small businesses with basic invoicing needs. It’s easy to use with a clean interface. However, it needs advanced features and scalability, which might be necessary as a business grows.
  • Square Invoices is ideal for businesses already using Square’s ecosystem, offering seamless integration and a straightforward invoicing process. Its free plan is a significant advantage for companies with moderate invoicing needs. The limitations include less customization and fewer advanced invoicing features.
  • Chargebee excels in managing complex, subscription-based invoicing, offering high customization and scalability. It’s ideal for businesses with evolving billing models. However, its higher cost and complexity might be overkill for smaller companies or those requiring more straightforward invoicing.

What To Do Next

Look for features that not only address your current needs but also have the potential to accommodate future growth. Feel free to take advantage of free trials, where available, to get a hands-on feel for each software. Choose an invoicing solution that aligns with your business style and enhances your financial management. Make this strategic decision today to pave the way for smoother, more efficient business operations tomorrow.