Wave Apps - Cloud Accounting Software Review

Wave Apps is a great option for entrepreneurs who know they need to do their bookkeeping, but want to spend the least amount of time doing it. Check out this app if you’re a new business owner on a budget; it won't cost you anything until you start getting paid. It's a simple and intuitive program that makes it easy to complete one of the least fun tasks of running a business.

Who is Wave targeted to? Wave has developed its app to appeal primarily to solo entrepreneurs who run a consulting or freelance business and for businesses with fewer than 10 employees.  If you're currently doing your bookkeeping in excel (or a shoebox) and are looking to upgrade, this could be the right option for you.

One feature I really like about Wave is that it has a stripped-down interface and unlike larger accounting programs, you won't need to search through multiple layers of menus to complete basic tasks. If all you need to do is issue a few invoices and record bank transactions, you'll be set up and running in no time. Your ongoing bookkeeping is made even easier when you link your bank account and credit cards to Wave and allow it to import transactions directly. Wave has short and useful tutorials which will guide you through all stages of the app. 

What will this cost me? Wave offers its core accounting functions for free and there aren't any plan levels or upgrades. They do charge a per-transaction fee if your customers pay you by credit card, but it won't cost you anything until you enable this feature. You'll also pay to use their payroll module.

Wave has a couple features that make it useful to solo entrepreneurs. First, it allows you to set up multiple businesses under the same user profile. This is great if you have multiple service lines, or you’re developing a lot of different business ideas. You'll be able to clearly see the profitability of each business.

Second, Wave knows that a lot of entrepreneurs often have their business and personal transactions mingled in one bank account. They’ve developed a feature that allows you to split your personal bank transactions from your business bank transactions, all within the app. It even provides an investment tracking and personal budgeting function, allowing you to see all your financial information in one place.

What else? Two key features I look for in cloud accounting software is the ability to email invoices and an option for customers to pay by credit card right in the invoice. Wave has these features and will also automatically follow up with customers on late invoices. The automatic late reminder eliminates an unpleasant task for you, gets you paid faster and ensures that you have cash in the bank sooner. 

Other great features:

  • Upload receipts and match to transactions
  • Integrates with three other business apps: Shoeboxed, Etsy and Paypal
  • Offers a basic selection of financial reports
  • Allows double-entry journal entries
  • No limit on the number of receipts you can upload

Some limitations:

  • Uses third-party ads
  • Only has basic financial reports and functions. There's no inventory, time tracking options or industry comparisons
  • At time of review, it was very slow to upload receipts
  • Accessibility is all or nothing. Once you give a person the option of editing or viewing information, they will be able to edit or view everything
  • Only three apps integrate with Wave

Wave is specifically designed for the solo entrepreneur but has the flexibility to add employees as your business grows. This, combined with the ability to track business and personal financial goals, could make it the right choice for you.


Would you like to know more about cloud accounting software? Check out our reviews on FreshbooksQuickbooks Online and Xero, or contact us for a free consultation.

Is there a sticky business or accounting topic you'd like to see covered in our product reviews? If so, let us know. Don't worry, you don't need to be a client!