As a retail seller I had no prior knowledge in the field of finance. I was struggling a lot until I found Flare cloud accounting software. A friend told me about Flare and suggested I sign up for free trial. It’s really helped me with bookkeeping and invoices and has some other features that have made me smarter about finances. As a freelancer, my time is important and have little of. I certainly didn’t have time to split between running my business and managing finances. I could barely keep up to invoicing let alone do my own accounting or budgeting.
As a I said, I had no prior knowledge of business finances and didn’t really like taking time to do all the administrative tasks common to small business operations like mine. I signed up for the accounting software trial version and used it for a few weeks before making the decision to purchase a subscription to Flare. First and foremost, I found it quite easy to use. Things were laid out in such a way that navigating to different parts of the app was intuitive. It was easy to click around and explore different aspects of the software. These include a dashboard that displays important financial information, online invoices, expenses, and income, expense and profit graphs. There are also financial reports that I provide to my accountant at tax time. After using the software for a couple of weeks, I found confident that I could continue with it. The first thing I did after buying the subscription was connect my online banking to Flare. Once done, the app downloads transactions automatically and all I have to do is categorize them.
I was pleasantly surprised by the price. I tried other accounting software, some were a little cheaper, but didn’t do as much and some were more expensive but seemed to be designed for accountants or at least someone with accounting experience. For the price, I find the software can do all the things I need (and some I’ve yet to explore) without much of a learning curve. The data is displayed in charts, graphs and tables and input templates for invoicing and expenses are straight forward to use.
Efficient and intuitive dashboard
The dashboard is my favorite part. When you log in, you are taken to the dashboard. At first, it is empty, but after you’ve created invoices, recorded payments, bills and other transaction, the dashboard displays this information. You see bank balances, unreconciled transactions, what customers owe you, outstanding bills, recent transactions, and, if you’ve created a budget, your budgeted income and expenses vs. actual income and expenses. Having this information in one place makes it easier for me to navigate to areas of the app. Most of the dashboard items are links that take you to the relevant section of the accounting software. This convenience makes it so much easier than fumbling around and trying to figure out where things are. I rarely, if ever, get lost, and if I do, I can get back to the dashboard in one click.
I never thought I’d like using bookkeeping software, but because Flare really does most of the work, I feel confident that it is done correctly without requiring that I have bookkeeping experience. Now, I know that my books are accurate and complete, so I don’t have to worry at tax time. As I work, Flare is doing things in the background, like recording transactions to the bookkeeping system, creating reports and other “accounting” tasks. I don’t feel like I’m bookkeeping at all. That’s probably why I like it Because I don’t have to worry about “accounting”, I can focus on what Flare can do for me. The tasks I perform most include: creating and sending invoices, recording invoice payments, recording expenses, using the budget, and categorizing transactions that come in from the bank.
No downloads. Work from anywhere.
Flare is “cloud” accounting software. You access your account from a web browser. I love that I can use the software from anywhere. I tend to use it on my desktop in my home office, but I also use it on my laptop at night in the living room or on my tablet when I’m travelling. Although I have backup software on my computer, I don’t need to manually backup Flare – like I did when I used spreadsheets and invoice templates for my business’s financial management and “bookkeeping”. Flare is updated and backed up by the Flare company. I don’t have to pay for improvements or updates, either. Every now and then, I get a cool surprise when I log in and see some improvement or some new feature that cost me nothing.
All in all, I find it to be the perfect accounting software for my business. You can try Flare for free. You don’t have to provide a credit card when you sign up for the trial version. It’s a full working, 30-day trial with all the features available.