Small Business Accounting Tools: Meet Receipt Bank

As small business accounting professionals, we’ve seen it all. We’ve encountered more receipt horror stories than the Kardashians have selfies on Instagram. When you’ve worked in accounting and bookkeeping for as long as The Orbit Group team have, you’ve pretty much seen all kinds of receipt snafus.

Receipts have a hard life. They end up crinkled to the completely faded. They can become stained and damaged. And of course everyone’s favourite, the “I know I put it somewhere now where the heck has it gone?!” receipt finds itself into regular circulation.

That’s why Receipt Bank is such a neat find.

You can face off against weak dyes, water damage, food and drink, curious children and absent minded colleagues. And you can defeat the vortex located at the bottom of wallet or handbag or filing cabinet. All with Receipt Bank.

Here’s our review of Receipt Bank. And why you could find value in adding to your small business accounting mix.

The nuts and bolts of Receipt Bank

Imagine if you had an amazing vacuum that could extract the key information from your receipts, bills and invoices. All without the manual fiddling (and the office dog barking at the noise of the vacuum).

This is the beauty of Receipt Bank.

Receipt Bank takes the data you need from your receipts and invoices and electronically stores the information for you. This standalone App rides Robin to Xero’s Batman. After collecting the info, it allows you to use that information to update your cloud accounting records.

How Does it Work?

Receipt Bank hunts for the information you need to make your taxation records and accounts useful. It takes information like the total amounts payable, the GST paid and the name of the supplier. It then uses its smart key to put this information under the right deduction. An example of this would be matching an Australia Post receipt to the postage and stationery account.

The design of Receipt Bank is quite clever. It bypasses the usual barrier we have (namely data entry) by allowing you to snap a photo of your receipt and upload it to the program. Here, extraction of the information is performed by the program. You’re no longer required to enter facts and figures or choose codes from drop down menus. Or you can upload via email, DropBox or PayPal. And they’ve even accounted for the not-so online businesses by allowing for postal delivery of invoices.

Once Receipt Bank is set up, it can push information to your Xero account. From here, you can reconcile Xero with the help of those Receipt Bank bills, invoices and receipts. This handy little feature stops those faded and lost receipts getting you in hot water if you ever face an audit.

Plus, Receipt Bank also works with Kashflow, Free Agent and QuickBooks Online (QBO) as well as our favourite, Xero.

Why Receipt Bank could ring some bells for your small business

There are a few reasons why you should check out Receipt Bank. If you’re already making use of Xero for your small business accounting, Receipt Bank can be a real time saver.

Here are some of the reasons why we think Receipt Bank is a little bit awesome:

  • It saves you time. Most items are processed within three hours or less
  • It’s hard to find a file format Receipt Bank doesn’t like. You don’t have to encourage your suppliers to change invoice formats. Or worry about only recording half the receipts. Receipt Bank accepts PNG, JPEG, GIF, TIFF, PDF, DOCX formats.
  • No more playing a game we like to call ‘find the receipt’. Outsmart the sun and never have to scrunch your face over a faded receipt again. Data collection is as simple as a snap on your phone or scan and upload. So it doesn’t matter if your receipts fade or lost at the bottom of your bag, a lake or the kid’s craft project.
  • – No more data entry. Grab some pom-poms and cheer it with us! Why would you spend time entering a bill into Xero when you can email it and it pops up ready to be paid? A.M.A.Z.I.N.G
  • It’s digital, so it’s ATO friendly. The Australia Taxation Office (ATO) accepts digital copies of receipts and invoices. By using Receipt Bank with your online accounting software then you’re ready if the ATO come a knockin’
  • Try before you buy with a free trial. You can take Receipt Bank out for a little small business spin to see if you like the way she handles. There is a 14 day free trial with no obligation to continue.
Some points for you to consider

At The Orbit Group, we do love to make sure all our customers are making informed decisions. We think Receipt Bank is a pretty fine addition to your small business accounting and bookkeeping. But there are a couple of points you should keep in mind before taking the plunge.

Here are some of the potential areas of improvement and/or things for you to mull over:

  • It’s only a 14 day trial, so use it wisely. We do love a good 30 day free trial to dig in and come to grips with software programs. We also know many of our small business customers will often intend to use something for a while before getting the chance to play properly. Make sure when you take advantage of your free trial, you have the time to make the most of it.
  • It’s one less pizza a month. At $33 per month, Receipt Bank isn’t overly expensive. But for a startup or freelancer, it can look like a fair chunk of change. A great way to decide is to consider how long it takes you to do your books each month. If it takes you more than 30 minutes, then Receipt Bank is a wise investment.
  • No due dates for you. Sadly, Receipt Bank doesn’t capture the due date on invoices that haven’t been paid. Here’s hoping they can crack the due date puzzle and add it into future releases.
Should your small business take the Receipt Bank plunge?

Any smart small business owner knows time is money. Time spent on small business accounting can be significant without the right tools and support. And that time spent away from servicing clients or making your core business hum is time spent away from generating profit.

At The Orbit Group, we’re big fans of anything that can make our lives easier. Receipt Bank saves us time and stores our paperwork for us. It overcomes common problems like lost and unusable receipts. And it fits like a glove with existing programs like Xero without making it hard to use.

You’ve got to give thumbs up to an App smart enough to do all that.

Just make sure the value you receive from automating your receipts gives you back time and headspace.

Want to discover Receipt Bank or talk over what it can do with your existing cloud accounting setup? Drop us a line or give us a call. We’re more than happy to help.

As a partner in the Receipt Bank network, we’re entitled to discounts on their products that we can in turn pass onto our clients. This commercial relationship in no way influences our opinion of Receipt Bank as we use it based on the merits of the product. The Orbit Group’s review of this product is as an independent business.