As a business owner, you will need to document every single business expense that your business conducts every day. This means that you will also be handling and keeping every receipt of your business’s purchase for tax and auditing purposes. But you will not be able to do that if you keep all of them in a messy folder or a messy box, filing away these crumpled little pieces of paper the old school way. Have you thought about the receipt scanner app?
How and where do you start? You will need to digitize all of them by investing in a good receipt scanner app. And it would help if you learned to incorporate this in your business’s system in order to manage your documents easier and quicker.
What is a receipt scanner app, anyway?
To simply explain this, receipt scanning apps photograph your receipts, which creates digital versions of them that you can easily store and retrieve from your business’s digital filing system.
Almost all of them work the same way: download the app on your phone, take a photo of your receipt, the app’s Optical Character Recognition (OCR) technology digitizes all the text and numbers, and they are stored in a filing system.
These digitized versions of your receipts are difficult to lose and easy to retrieve because you can use filters and keywords to file them and retrieve them.
Do I really need to use a Receipt Scanner App?
If you want to organize your receipts and stop spending so much time on filing them instead of doing something else for your business, the answer is yes.
Here are simple points you have to keep in mind as you scout for the perfect receipt scanner app for you:
- Digitizing receipts makes record keeping easier. Regularly scanning and saving digital versions of your receipts and other documents of your expenses mean there’s a small chance of you tossing your proof of purchase and losing an important document in the garbage because you’re “organizing.”
- You won’t be spending hours or days sorting through a pile of receipts just for a small purchase. Admit it. This takes much of your time during tax season.
- You will know where your money goes every month. Thus, you can also cut spending on a certain category and allot the budget to other things instead.
- The HMRC requires you to hold on to receipts for five years. In case something comes up, you can easily look for and pull out a particular receipt from your digital filing system.
Now that we got that discussion about receipt managing apps and their use out of the way, let us go to the apps you can actually use for your business for the real receipt scanner app.
Who is this for? QuickBooks is perfect for accounting-savvy businesses. When using QuickBooks, you are plugged into its suite of accounting tools that allows you to scan receipts, create expense reports, do your bookkeeping, and put together financial reports and statements in just a single dashboard.
- Available on Android, iOs, and web browser.
- Starts at £6/month.
Who is this for? If you need to track your expenses from meetings in different parts of the world, you need Expensify. Tracking your expenses on a trip can be a nightmare! This app allows you to snap photos of your receipts using your mobile phone, submit them, and just be done with them!
It also automatically imports receipts from services like Uber and AirBnb, and even has a function for mileage tracking. And suppose you’re using your company credit card during these business trips. In that case, you can use Expensify to import those expenses automatically, so you won’t have to go through them again after each trip.
- Available on Android, iOs, and web browser.
- Starts at £3.99/month.
Who is this for? If you need to quickly manage a large number of receipts, Receipt Bank is the app for you. Not only does it allow you to scan and store receipts depending on your need, but it also allows you to hook your credit card to scan multiple receipts at a time. It also integrates with accounting software like QuickBooks, Sage One, and Xero.
- Available on Android and iOs.
- Starts at £10/month.
“But what if my business doesn’t have the budget to pay for these apps? Am I hopeless?”
The answer, of course, is NO! If you’re not managing a high volume of receipts yet or if you’re business is just starting out, you may start by going for these low-tech solutions.
Document Scanner Apps
There are a lot of free document scanner apps that capture all sorts of documents available on The App Store or on Google Play. Using these apps, you can easily scan your receipts and store them manually on your desktop.
The downside, however, is that you have to do everything manually. You will need to input the necessary values to your books, take note of the dates, and just come up with a system that works so you won’t have to go over all your receipts again during tax season—regularly—to keep your records up to date.
Google Spreadsheet or Excel Sheet
If you don’t mind data entry, then you can go for spreadsheets. You can download free bookkeeping templates on the web and ensure you update them regularly. And when you’re done inputting those numbers, you can generate your reports and submit them.
Listen to your mind’s worries and take necessary steps, such as setting a stricter budget for both your personal and business finance. Work with an expert to identify which aspects can be improved on in terms of cutting back and boosting. Choose the practical receipt scanner app for your business.
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