FreshBooks Review 2021

  • Make unlimited invoices and send them out to your clients
  • Accept payment from 100+ apps including Stripe and PayPal
  • Platform has 14 languages and it’s compatible with 170 currencies

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FreshBooks is an alternative to traditional accounting and is built for freelancers, micro-businesses, and small businesses.

Accounting is an integral part of any business. But it’s not everyone’s forte. While searching for software that was easy to use and could perform essential accounting functions, I discovered FreshBooks.

FreshBooks first arrived on the cloud accounting scene as an invoice generator. As the software expanded, it incorporated double-entry accounting. In addition, you can track time and automate invoice reminders for your clients. Managing your customers, expenses, and projects from one place is another valuable feature, including drawing up proposals and financial reports.

Online accounting tools are commonly used by most businesses. And they can positively impact customer growth. Companies that rely solely on cloud accounting are likely to attract five times more customers than businesses that don’t.

This FreshBooks review will cover everything I discovered about this platform in detail. Let’s dive right in.

What Makes FreshBooks a Good Option?

To summarize this FreshBooks review of why you might like FreshBooks, it’s easy to use and very practical.

Ease of Use

You can use the FreshBooks online platform on almost every web browser. There is a mobile app for IOS and Android users as well.

Drawing up an invoice or a proposal can be done in a matter of minutes. Tracking time is quick with a click of your mouse or tap on your screen. And you can transfer your tracked time to the invoice you’re sending to your client for accurate billing.

After exploring their website, I can confirm that the platform is beginner-friendly.

Practicality

FreshBooks is made for those who run service-based businesses such as lawyers, writers, and web developers. You can perform basic accounting functions without prior knowledge in the field.

The Pros & Cons of FreshBooks

We’ve got a great list of pros and cons to make this complete FreshBooks review even more helpful.

ProsCons
+ Unlimited invoicing
+ Trial access
+ Web-based
+ App integrations
+ Language and currency
+ Cost-effective
– No inventory management
– Limited users and billed clients
– Location limitation for e-payments
– No budgeting, tax, or payroll

The Pros of Freshbooks

Here are the positives we found in our experience with FreshBooks for this FreshBooks review.

Unlimited Invoicing

No matter which plan you’re on, you can generate as many invoices as needed and send them out to your clients.

Trial Access

If you’re unsure about FreshBooks, you can sign up with a 30-day trial and test all the features. What’s more, no credit card details are required on sign-up.

Web-based

You don’t have to install any software on your computer to use the features. You can work online from any device, including your mobile phone.

App Integrations

There are 100+ apps you can integrate with FreshBooks, including Stripe and PayPal, for online payments. In addition, you can synchronize your clients and orders from Shopify or automatically import payroll transactions with Gusto.

Language and Currency Compatibilities

The platform can be used in one of fourteen languages, and it’s compatible with about 170 currencies. The currency feature is ideal when working with international clients.

Cost-effective

Some free accounting tools are available for small businesses with basic features (EG: Wave). However, compared to most other online accounting solutions, FreshBooks provides excellent value at a reasonable price.

The Cons of Freshbooks

There are some areas FreshBooks can improve though. We’ve included those in our FreshBooks review too.

No Built-in Inventory Management Tools

There is no integrated inventory management tool in FreshBooks. To keep track of your stock, you’ll need to integrate with an inventory management app like 2Ship or BarCloud.

Limited Users and Billed Clients

You can only create an account with a single user under the advertising pricing for plans. To add more users, you must pay $10 per month per additional user.

Each plan allows you to send an unlimited number of invoices each month. However, there is a limit to the number of clients you can bill per month with the Lite and Plus plans. This limitation can be a severe inconvenience if you have more than 5 to 50 customers.

Location Limitation for Electronic Payments

Only US citizens can use the Automated Clearing House (ACH) online payment method.

No Budgeting, Tax, or Payroll Support

FreshBooks doesn’t have the tools to do payroll, create a budget, or generate accounting reports for tax purposes. However, there are a host of apps available that integrate with FreshBooks to perform these functions.

FreshBooks Features

FreshBooks has many services to meet almost all business needs, from time tracking for projects to generating invoices.

What’s more, is your dashboard is equipped with summaries that help your business stay on track with its finances. These include outstanding invoices, profits, revenue sources, spending, and unbilled time.

But every business has different needs, and there may be specific services you’re looking for. Below I’ll take you through the primary features provided by FreshBooks.

FreshBooks FeaturesDetails
InvoicingSend professional invoices to clients
Mileage and Time TrackingEasy mileage and time logging for business-related travel
Accounting and ReportsKeep your accounts reconciled with your bank balance
Client ManagementSee all client details in one place and send invoices
Expense TrackingCoordinates with your bank account to keep track of business spending
Project Management and Team CollaborationShare images and files amongst teams and communicate tasks
Estimates and ProposalsCreate documents to pitch new projects to your clients
Payment MethodsReceive online payments through credit card or ACH

Invoicing

You can generate professional invoices to send to clients. These could include tracked time and work-related expenses. You also have the option of accepting online payments through various methods, including recurring payments.

FreshBooks 1 - comparewise

Mileage and Time Tracking

Make accurate recordings of the time it takes to drive for work-related business or to complete a project. You can track mileage from your mobile phone, which makes logging and organizing trips that much easier. When it’s to submit your tax return, simply download your logbook with the click of a button.

As for time tracking, you can record this from the app too. Or you can track time directly from your preferred project management tools, such as Trello and Basecamp. Tracked hours can be transferred to invoices.

Accounting and Reports

Years after FreshBooks was first introduced as an invoicing platform, they added double-entry accounting and bank reconciliation to their service offerings.

Double-entry accounting is a tried and tested way to keep your accounts balanced.

For every transaction you make through your business, there’ll be two entries recorded. These can affect your assets, liabilities, income, or expenses. In this way, the accounting reports you draw up will show an accurate image of your business’s profitability and financial position.

From your account, you can compile general ledgers, balance sheets and make journal entries. You can also view profit and loss data to aid you in making business decisions.

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Client Management

Keep track of all your client-related information, such as invoices and estimates. You can ensure bills sent to clients are accurate by tracking the work you do for a project. And you can analyze clients to determine which are helping your business thrive and which are hindering progress.

Expense Tracking

Stay on top of your business spending with synchronization between your business bank account and FreshBooks account. You can log receipts by taking a picture and saving them in the cloud. Seamlessly add work-related expenses to an invoice when billing a client. And track project spending to ensure you remain within your budget.

FreshBooks 3-comparewise

Project Management and Team Collaboration

Collaborate effortlessly on projects with your team and share images and files from the project’s onset. Communicate without a hitch and manage deliverables as well as add due dates to projects. You can also control your team’s access with permissions.

Estimates and Proposals

Create custom estimates and proposals with pertinent details for a project and attach files to pitches. Define the scope of the work you’ll be doing for a client, along with the deliverables. You can check the status of a proposal and know when you get approval from a customer. Online client approval will allow you to get started on the work as soon as possible.

Payment Methods

You can receive online payments with a credit card or through Automated Clearing House (ACH) [in the US only], Stripe or PayPal. Customers can also make deposits for a project. Plus, you can put a client on retainer to secure your future cash flow.

FreshBooks Pricing Tiers

I found the four pricing plans offered to be quite appealing. Each plan is suited for a specific type of business and its needs. This pricing structure makes it easier to determine the right plan for your business.

Freshbooks Pricing TiersPriceFeatures
Lite$19/month+ Send unlimited invoices to up to 5 clients
+ Track unlimited expenses
+ Send unlimited estimates
+ Get paid with credit cards and pre-authorized debits
+ Track sales tax & see reports
+ Access anywhere on iOS and Android
Plus$32/month+ Send unlimited invoices to up to 50 clients
+ Automatically track expenses
+ Send unlimited estimates and proposals
+ Get paid with credit cards and pre-authorized debits
+ Set up recurring billing and client retainers
+ Run business health reports
+ Double-entry accounting reports
+ Invite your accountant
+ Access anywhere on iOS and Android
+ Mobile mileage tracking
Premium$60/month+ Send unlimited invoices to an unlimited amount of clients
+ Track Bills, Bill Payments & Vendors with Accounts Payable
+ Track project profitability
+ Customize email templates with dynamic fields
+ Customize email signatures
+ Automatically track expenses
+ Automatically send late payment reminders and bill late fees
+ Send unlimited estimates and proposals
+ Get paid with credit cards and pre-authorized debits
+ Get paid with checkout links
+ Set up recurring billing and client retainers
+ Run business health reports
+ Run financial and accounting reports
+ Invite your accountant
+ Access anywhere on iOS and Android
+ Mobile mileage tracking
SelectCustom+ Send unlimited invoices to an unlimited amount of clients
+ Access to lower credit card transaction rates 
+ Start with 2 team member accounts
+ Get a dedicated account manager
+ Get help migrating from other software
+ Set up your account with custom onboarding services
+ Remove FreshBooks branding from client emails
+ Contact us with a dedicated support number
+ Get paid with credit cards, pre-authorized debits, and checkout links
+ Set up recurring billing, subscriptions and client retainers
+ Securely accept credit cards over the phone
+ Automatically track expenses
+ Automatically send late payment reminders and bill late fees
+ Invite your accountant
+ Run business health reports
+ Run financial and accounting reports
+ Access anywhere on iOS and Android

Pricing plans, outside of any promotions, are as follows:

  • The Lite plan usually costs around $19.00 per month and is intended for professionals with more basic needs. The plan is best for businesses with five or fewer clients.
  • The Plus plan’s standard pricing is in the region of $32.00 per month. It provides additional features for generating reports and automating specific tasks. However, you’re restricted to billing a maximum of 50 clients.
  • The Premium plan will set you back approximately $60.00 per month and is designed for growing businesses with employees. This plan provides unlimited billable clients.
  • The Select plan is offered to businesses with more complex needs. The pricing on this tier is customized according to the business’s needs.

You also have the option of paying an annual fee on each plan, which will give you a discount over twelve months.

Additional Costs

  • For every team member you add to your account, you’ll have to pay at least $12.00 per month.
  • Advanced payments (excluding the Lite plan) will be about $25.00 per month. This add-on is for saving and charging client credit cards for subscription-based billing and virtual terminals.

How Safe Is It to Use FreshBooks?

FreshBooks uses one of the most secure encryption methods available to protect your data. This encryption makes all your sensitive information illegible to third parties.

They have Cisco-powered firewalls in place. And use Alert Logic to sweep through their servers for vulnerabilities and to fix issues promptly. In addition, they have a system in place to monitor unusual behaviour.

Data is regularly backed up in two servers in two separate locations to protect the information you’ve stored on their online platform.

The one thing I found lacking is two-factor authentication. This could be especially useful to prevent anyone from hacking into your account. However, the security measures they employ are still suitable.

FreshBooks Promotions

FreshBooks has a 3-month fifty percent discount promotion on the Lite, Plus, and Premium plans when writing this FreshBooks review. However, this promotion will only be available for a limited period.

That said, they run new promotions every now and then. So, it’s worth your while to keep an eye out for them. Promotional offers will usually be advertised on the home and pricing pages. They’ll also include promotional information in their emails to users.

FreshBooks Customer Service and Support

On weekdays, you can contact the FreshBooks team by phone or email between 08:00 and 20:00. They also have a chatbot on the site to help you search for answers to specific questions.

The FAQs section offers sufficient details to acquaint oneself with all the platform’s features. When I searched for solutions to an issue I was having, I found the information I needed on the site in seconds. However, if you need additional guidance, you can always reach out to their team.

There are also webinars and a blog section worth exploring. You can find tips, advice, articles, product news, case studies, and eBooks packed with valuable information on the blog. And FreshBooks has an active presence on most social media platforms, including Facebook and Twitter.

FreshBooks Online Platform

Their web platform is supported on Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Microsoft Edge, and Opera. However, issues have been reported by clients using Internet Explorer.

When I first signed up, I was met with a minimalist interface.

There are hints placed at different sections to give you an idea of the useful features on the page. And a navigation pane sits on the left-hand side of your screen so you can easily find what you need.

FreshBooks 4-comparewise

The interface allows you to move from one feature to the next without any hassle. Load times are decent as well, depending on your internet speed.

You can draw up an invoice in minutes and send it directly to your client from the platform.

It’s just as user-friendly when accessing the platform via their top-rated mobile app. And your data will automatically sync from one device to another if you happen to be working on your phone.

Overall, it’s easy for anyone to use the platform’s features, even if they’re new to accounting.

How to Get Started with FreshBooks

The initial sign-up process takes about a minute. I could sign up with my existing Google account, which was super convenient. There’s also the option of entering your details manually if you prefer. You can also sign up with your Apple account.

FreshBooks 5-comparewise

After you sign up, you’ll be led through the following steps to set up your account:

Step 1: Set up your account for your business.

FreshBooks 6-comparewise

Step 2: Enter the information to be printed on your invoices and estimates.

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Step 3: Select the number of team members you work with.

FreshBooks 8-comparewise

After you’ve input all the above information, you’re good to go.

It shouldn’t take you more than ten minutes to set up your account. When done, you’ll be redirected to your dashboard.

Alternatives to FreshBooks

You may not feel that FreshBooks is a good fit for your business because you have many employees. Or perhaps you own a product-based business that needs more advanced inventory management tools.

There is no fault in assessing all your options and choosing the best accounting software for your business.

There are some alternatives to FreshBooks which you might want to consider.

QuickBooks

QuickBooks accounting software for small businesses is highly rated. They have an online platform, a desktop application, and a mobile phone app.

If your business is growing exponentially and you need a more comprehensive accounting solution, QuickBooks may be the software for you.

Wave

Wave is the go-to platform for fundamental bookkeeping at no cost. They have invoicing and accounting features, including unlimited income and expense tracking, a financial statement generator, and double-entry capabilities.

They also have a mobile app from which you can draw up invoices.

FreshBooks Review Conclusion

There are a few limitations to the FreshBooks platform if you’re running a sizeable business. However, I would still consider it great value for money for freelancers and small business owners.

When compared to other small business accounting software, FreshBooks stood out for me. They provide you with the tools required to generate professional financial documents. You’ll also have everything you need to manage your revenue and expenses effortlessly.

I find FreshBooks so easy to use that I recommend it even if you have no prior accounting or bookkeeping experience. And if you’re a one-man band, it’ll help you streamline specific tasks that are usually time-consuming.

Top Freshbook Features

freshbooks review promotion deal - comparewise

FreshBooks has many services to meet almost all business needs.5 minutes

FreshBooks 1 - comparewise
Invoicing

Send professional invoices to clients.

FreshBooks 2 -comparewise
Mileage and Time Tracking

Easy mileage and time logging for business-related travel.

FreshBooks 3-comparewise
Accounting and Reports

Keep your accounts reconciled with your bank balance.

FreshBooks 4-comparewise
Client Management

See all client details in one place and send invoices.

FreshBooks 5-comparewise
Expense Tracking

Coordinates with your bank account to keep track of business spending.

FreshBooks 6-comparewise
Project Management and Team Collaboration

Share images and files amongst teams and communicate tasks.

FreshBooks 7-comparewise
Estimates and Proposals

Create documents to pitch new projects to your clients.

FreshBooks 8-comparewise
Payment Methods

Receive online payments through credit card or ACH.

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FAQs about FreshBooks

What is FreshBooks?

FreshBooks is an online accounting tool accessible to freelancers, micro and small businesses. From an invoice generator, FreshBooks has upgraded into double-entry accounting. It can track time and automate invoice reminders for your clients.

Why should I apply for FreshBooks?

You can use FreshBooks on any web browser meaning, you can create invoices or proposal anywhere in a matter of minutes. It will ensure accurate billing as it allows you to transfer your tracked time to the invoice you’re sending to.

How much is FreshBooks?

It depends on the type of your business and its needs. You can choose from different plans such as:

  • Lite plan – around $19.00 per month
  • Plus plan – around $32.00 per month
  • Premium plan – around $60.00 per month
  • Select plan – customised depending on your business
How do I apply for FreshBooks?

It’s easy, just go on their website which is easy to navigate and click sign up. It will take a minute! You can also contact FreshBooks team by phone or email between 08:00 and 20:00. They also have a chatbot on their website if you wanted instant answers to specific questions.

Is FreshBooks safe?

Freshbooks is definitely safe, it has encryption methods which ensures your data is protected. They also have Cisco-powered firewalls in place and Alert Logic to go through any suspicious activity.

August 21, 2021
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