Guest Post: 10 Effective Invoicing Apps for Non-Fiction Writers

by Meryl Evans | Category: Business, Meryl's Notes Blog, Tech, Writing 5 comments

Time is moneyGuest post from Melissa Tamura.

If you’re a non-fiction writer, you most likely rely on a system to bill your clients and manage payments. While it sounds like a straightforward process, invoicing can end up taking loads of your time away from work. Writers need a quick and simple method to guarantee receiving payments on time without having to hire another employee.

Here are 10 web-based invoicing apps to solve this problem. These services allow you to choose from different account plans are free, affordable or pricier expensive for more robust features.

1. FreshBooks

Deemed by most as the leader of online invoicing, FreshBooks delivers traditional features of an invoicing application. It features time tracking and the ability to manage subcontractors that work on any of your projects. The application works seamlessly with similar accounting and project management systems, most notably project management app Basecamp and QuickBooks. If you’re ever lost on how to get something done with FreshBooks, you can call support or ask on the community message board. First and third party addons are available to extend the online application, including an iPhone app and a Mac OS X widget.

Price: Free to $39.95 monthly (30-day money back guarantee) [Details]

2. Ballpark

Ballpark aims to streamline communication and cut down on emails by centralizing conversations between your company and clients. Project teams can share, discuss and manage invoices together. It builds in client feedback and approval and tracks activities on the dashboard. Ballpark also features a notifier for OS X, an iPhone app, community forums.

Price: $6 to $99 monthly (30-day free trial) [Details]

3. Blinksale

Blinksale may be more ideal for writers with strong knowledge of web design and development. It lets you design your invoices using cascading style sheets (CSS) and it comes with an API for incorporating Blinksale into your workflow or other apps.  Blinksale offers all the basics and integration with Basecamp, so users can import and invoice clients without having to enter the data twice.

Price: $6 to $24 monthly (30-day free trial) [Details]

4. LessAccounting

LessAccounting monitors your banking data by connecting to the money management application Wesabe. You can also import data from QuickBooks into your account. If you have repeating invoices or drive places for business, you can set up automatic invoices and track miles. The service comes with role-based permissions and lets you invite your CPA. LessAccounting provides an iPhone app for invoicing.

Price: $12 to $300 monthly (30-day free trial) [Details]

5. Cashboard

Cashboard’s free financial time tracking service lets you invoice, send estimates, accept payments online and integrate Basecamp. It offers widgets for Windows and OS X and an iPhone application for managing your information without opening a browser. You can give clients access to Cashboard for tracking your progress, approving estimates and paying invoices online. Beware that pricing options look confusing with per employee and per active client options.

Price: Free to $140 monthly (15-day free trial) [Details]

6. Ronin

Ronin is a simple online invoicing app for individual freelancers to small businesses. Standard features include online invoicing, payment tracking, time tracking, client management and sending estimates. Ronin works with PayPal and Authorize.Net for online payments. The services can send invoices and estimates in multiple currencies for those working with international clients. Teams can take advantage of its role-based permissions feature so members are limited to what they can view.

Price: Free to $48 monthly (30-day free trial) [Details]

7. Simply Invoices

If you have minimal invoicing needs and little use for common features offered by other services, Simply Invoices may be your ideal option. The app is compatible with Basecamp, Less Time Spent, Tick and Harvest. Many invoicing apps have a lot of noise and features, but Simply Invoices keeps its interface, well, simple.

Price: Free to $25 monthly (30-day free trial) [Details]

8. Invoice Journal

Invoice Journal includes most commercial invoicing service features without the cost. This may be a good option for those just starting out as a writer. Since it’s a free service, you won’t find frills like desktop widgets or iPhone apps. But some people never use those features even if offered.

Price: Free

9. CannyBill

CannyBill is an online application targeted to professional services providers who can take advantage of the packages feature. This lets you customize your service and product offerings for your customers. Customers can select the products and services they want using online forms. CannyBill includes a “My Account” feature for your customers to check orders, make payments and change details. Like most apps, it integrates with Basecamp, QuickBooks and other third-party services.

Price: $8 to $48 monthly (30-day free trial) [Details]

10. Simplybill

Simplybill offers standard invoicing features found in most commercial invoicing services. It lets you create customizable invoices, or you can select from several pre-designed templates. Simplybill can create quotations and convert them into invoices, email alerts and send follow up messages .

Price: Free to $25 monthly (30-day free trial) [Details]

About the author: Melissa Tamura enjoys blogging and interacting with other writers online. She writes about online degrees for the Zen College Life blog. In her spare time she enjoys learning new things and Japanese cooking. See what colleges made her list of the top 10 communications colleges.

What do you use to manage invoices? What do you like / dislike about it?

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