Where Can I find Free Bookkeeping Software?
If you’re running your own small business or are just starting out, you might not necessarily be able to afford a bookkeeping or accounting software package that costs hundreds or even thousands of dollars to purchase. While you definitely need some type of software to help keep track of the day-to-day operation of your business, you shouldn’t take your organization into debt just for that purpose. Many people don’t realize that you can get free bookkeeping software online in a variety of different ways. All you have to do is know both where to look and what you should be looking for.
When it comes to free bookkeeping software, there are two main roads that you can travel to get to the type of program you need. There are free services that are available for downloading, much like the traditional programs and apps that you install on your computer. There are also accounting applications that exist solely on the Internet and don’t require any downloading of any kind. Both types have their fair share of advantages and disadvantages.
One of the advantages that come with free download accounting software comes from the fact that an internet connection is not required to use the program. The only time you will ever need an active internet connection when using the program comes during the period where you are transferring the executable installation file from the internet to your PC or Mac. Once the file download is complete, you would still be able to use the program as much as you’d like even if you never connected your computer to the internet again. However, without access to the internet you would more than likely be responsible for manually uploading or manually entering transaction data. A key reason to use any accounting software is to save time and reduce the amount of manual labor required to keep a clean set of books.
When it comes to free bookkeeping software, the types of applications that you use exclusively on the Internet and “in the cloud” have nearly every other advantage over free download accounting software. For starters, these types of programs are traditionally operated directly from your computer’s Web browser. You don’t have to worry about a new version of the software being released that your older piece of computer hardware might be unable to run. If your computer can open an internet browser, it definitely has enough available resources to run the accounting software.
Additionally, the type of accounting software that is used primarily on the Internet also tends to be significantly more secure than the types that you download. When you create a new user profile in a program that you’ve downloaded, all of the important financial information that you enter is stored on the computer’s hard drive in the form of a file. If anything should happen to that file or to the computer itself, you would lose access to all of the information you worked so hard to compile. If someone steals the laptop computer you use for your business, they would have access to all of the important records from your accounting software. If you use online accounting software, you have none of these worries at any point. The information that you enter is stored on an internet server. Not only is it always backed up in the event of an emergency, but you can also access it from any computer with a Web browser and an Internet connection. You’ll be able to easily send invoices, track purchases, monitor accounts and perform other important tasks from halfway around the world if you wanted to. You’re no longer tied to any one machine.
When it comes to finding truly free accounting software, you are pretty limited. Cheqbook accounting software offers a free trial version to customers so that they can try it before they buy it. In the event that you like the application and want to continue using it, you can always opt in for a monthly subscription and continue using it.