As a freelancer, one of the biggest points of friction (and least enjoyable parts about working independently) is having to deal with many of the dull and repetitive accounting and administrative processes. There are a number of unforeseeable challenges with running your own small business.
Two of the most unexpectedly difficult things for me to deal with, when first freelancing, was setting up my accounting/finance software. There are so many different options to choose from and you never know which one would be the best fit.
My goal, starting out, was simple: spend as little time as possible worrying about the auxiliary functions of my business so I could focus on what really mattered. In this exploration, I played around with a number of different helpful pieces of software.
Due makes online payment processing simple for independent freelancers and businesses. They package all of your billing and transactional information into one seamless payments dashboard — so you can view all of your payments information in one place.
They are one of the fastest and most affordable solutions on the market — with rates “starting at 2.8% for credit card processing.”
Bonsai is an all-in-one freelancing solution designed to help creatives and makers manage their businesses with ease. They integrate a number of different products across the different functions of a conventional freelancer to automate a lot of the manual work.
Via their platform, freelancers can easily create proposals, draft contracts, track their time, and invoice clients. Their seamless user interface makes it easy to understand how well your business is performing.
Harvest provides a simple to use, cross-platform (web, smartphone, etc.) application for time-tracking. One of the biggest frustrations I have experienced as a freelancer is having to deal with the little repetitive steps of logging and reporting my hours. With Harvest, you can easily “create and send invoice online, then accept payments using Paypal, Stripe and more.”
If you just want to be able to quickly and easily send invoices to your clients, then this tool by Quickbooks may be your best bet. I have used it before to create simple PDFs to send to clients and it helps you keep things in order. Best of all, it’s free!
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