Freshbooks - Cloud Accounting Software Review

Three of the most important outcomes you can get out of cloud accounting software is the ability to invoice more, get paid faster and manage your paperwork with minimum pain.  Freshbooks delivers on all counts.


Who is Freshbooks targeted to? If you’re a service-oriented business with a few employees who need to track their time and deliver invoices as soon as their done their work, this could be a great app for you.


You don’t need to be a bookkeeping expert in order to use Freshbooks. Set up is easy and you can import banking and credit card information directly into the program. You'll find that the interface is easy to use and Freshbooks has a well developed set of tutorials and FAQ’s, in case you need a guide through the program.


Is there a free version? Freshbooks offers a free trial, but you will need to sign up for the paid version in order to use it after the trial period ends. As with any web-based software, you have the option of different payment plans. The amount you’ll pay depends on your level of use and number of employees who need access.


Freshbooks has a couple features you won’t get from its' competition. First, it allows you to give your employees and contractors permission to issue an invoice as soon as they complete a service call or project. This eliminates the need for you to sit down and slog through billings every month. You get paid faster and you save time. Second, your employees and contractors can keep track of their time and re-bill expenses right in the software, ensuring that time and money doesn’t get missed.


Two key features I look for in cloud accounting software is the the ability to email invoices and an option for customers to pay by credit card, embedded right in the invoice. Freshbooks has these features and will even automatically follow up with customers on late invoices. The automatic late reminder eliminates an unpleasant task for you and gets you paid faster, ensuring you get cash in the bank. 


Other great features:

  • Upload receipts, and match them to transactions, allowing you to get rid of all those bits of paper.
  • Integrates with a variety of apps, including mainstream apps like Google Apps, Mailchimp, Stripe/Paypal and Shopify.
  • Creates basic industry report cards that allow you to track certain financial information and compares your business to other similar businesses using Freshbooks
  • Offers a decent selection of financial reports including revenue by customer and time tracking reports


Some limitations:

  • No payroll function, but does offer integration with payroll apps (Zenpayroll and PaymentEvolution)
  • Trial version only lasts 30 days and no free version available 
  • No inventory function. You can invoice your products, but it won’t keep track of your inventory for you.
  • Does not allow full journal entries, making it difficult to adjust for accruals. Some of your info will be on a cash basis and some on an accrual basis. This means more journal entries for your accountant, but less chance of error by you.
  • No industry-specific templates


Freshbooks is a solid choice in cloud accounting software, especially for service-based businesses. It is flexible enough for a growing business and offers features that help you keep on top of cash-flow and minimizes your paper-work. 

Check out our reviews of Xero, Quickbooks Online and Wave Apps.