20 Best Free Video Editing Software Programs in 2018

Finding the best free video editing software should be a core part of any ecommerce entrepreneur’s video success. Stunning video content can really help boost conversions and ROI for your online store. Whether its Instagram stories, Facebook ads, or Youtube product testimonials, the best free video editing software will make your brand look slick and professional.

With the amount and quality of video editing software available, you don’t have to be Spielberg – or have his budget – to get epic results.

In this article we compile the best free video editing software from around the web. Our top 20 list focuses on the most versatile free video editing software we could find. While each user has different needs, this guide will provide you with a good overview of what you can expect from each video editor and how to to get the best out of it.

Our selection is divided into the best free video editing software for desktop, mobile video editing apps, and video editors for Instagram. Ready to get started?

Lights, camera, action!

Post Contents

Best Free Video Editing Software for Desktop

The following list of the best free video editing software is desktop based. Desktop applications typically have more editing power than mobile apps. Use these video editors when you need to produce longer-form content for Youtube or your website.

All of these video editors are either entirely free to use or have an excellent free version. This video software ranges from basic to advanced.

1. Blender

Blender, one of the best free video editing software, is available on Windows, Mac, and Linux.

best free video editing software

Blender is an open source program that is entirely free to use. Blender was actually designed as a 3D animation suite, but it does come with a very useful video editor. Blender’s video editor should be enough for most of your video needs.

The editor allows you to perform basic actions like video cuts and splicing. it also allows you to carry out more complex tasks like video masking. This makes it a very flexible video editor and caters to both beginner and advanced users.

The Blender Video Editor includes the following features:

  • Live preview, luma waveform, chroma vectorscope and histogram displays.
  • Audio mixing, syncing, scrubbing, and waveform visualization.
  • Up to 32 slots for adding video, images, audio, and effects.
  • Speed control, adjustment layers, transitions, keyframes, filters, and more.

Pros: Perfect for advanced users who are not put off by all the features.

Cons: The sheer array of features make the learning curve a little steeper. Most of the tutorials are focussed on the 3D animation/modeling side. The resources to help you with the video editor are very limited.

Best for: More advanced projects that may involve 3D animation.

2. Lightworks

Lightworks is another one of the best free video editing software. It’s available on Windows, Mac, and Linux.

lightworks best free video editing software

Lightworks is one of the more powerful video editors on the list. It’s absolutely packed with useful features. The free version should be more than enough for most users. The pro version costs $25 a month.

This video editor includes the following in the free version:

  • High precision video trimming.
  • Multicam support.
  • Export to 720p for Youtube.
  • Wide range of video formats supported.

While most features are included,  4K video support for Youtube and Vimeo is only included in the paid version of the software. Compared to Blender, for example, Lightworks has many great video tutorials which can make it quicker to get up and running. Check out this feature comparison to make sure the free version has what you need.

Pros: Very powerful video editor with many advanced features.

Cons: 4K video support only in paid version. Some users may find Lightworks too advanced.

Best for: All round desktop video editing.

3. Shotcut

Shotcut the best free video editing software is available on Windows, Mac, and Linux.

shotcut_mac_monitor

Shotcut, like Blender, is a fully open source program. This means after downloading it, you get access to all the features without the need for a paid upgrade.

This video editor supports a wide range of video formats and boasts a great collection of tutorial videos. While this video editing software has great features, some users may find the interface a little quirky. This software was originally designed for Linux and it definitely shows. But, under the hood it’s still a quality video editor.

Two of the most striking features are 4K HD resolution support and its timeline editing. Not many free versions of software include 4K resolution support. Shotcut also doesn’t require you to import your video into the editor: this can be a time saver if you are dealing with large video files.

Pros: Native timeline editing and 4K resolution support.

Cons: Quirky interface may be off putting for some users.

Best for: 4K, HD video projects.

4. VSDC Free Video Editor

The best free video editing software only available on Windows is VSDC.

vsdc

VSDC is video editing software only available to Windows users. The free version has a powerful set of features including color correction and audio editing.

The pro version costs $19.99 and includes image stabilization, voice over support, and visual waveform. If you choose not to update to the pro version, then technical support costs $9.99 for one month, or $14.99 for a year.

Pros: Relatively straightforward to learn with many powerful features.

Cons: Technical support is not free; Windows only.

Best for: Windows based editing projects

5. Machete Video Editor Lite

Available on Windows only.

machete-lite-04-620x449

Machete Lite is one of the most simple editors in the list and is great for quick and simple editing tasks. In the free version you cannot edit audio, you can only entirely remove audio tracks. Also, the free version only supports AVI and WMV files. The full version costs $19.95, and it allows you to edit audio and supports more file types.

Pros: Super simple to learn and use.

Cons: Windows only; does not support as many file types as other programs; no audio editing.

Best for: Simple video splicing.

6. Avidemux

Available on Windows, Mac, and Linux.

avidemux

Avidemux is great video editing software for beginners as the interface is very simple to use. This program can help you to perform basic tasks including:

  • Simple cutting
  • Encoding
  • Filtering

If you are completely new to video editing, this might be a good place to start.

Pros: Very simple software; no need to read technical docs.

Cons: Not as many features as other video editors.

Best for: Basic editing tasks.

7. HitFilm Express

Available for both Mac and Windows.

Hitfilm

HitFilm Express is one of the more professional video editors to make the list. It contains all the features you would expect from a basic editor (splicing, trimming, and audio editing) plus many more. While some users may find HitFilm a little advanced, it’s certainly one of the best all round free video editors out there. The free package includes over 180 special effects.

The tutorials are mainly based on well known Hollywood movies like Star Wars, but these are very interactive and engaging.

Before you can download this software, Hitfilm asks you to share a status update on social media. However, this is a very small price to pay for such advanced software. Finally, Hitfilm includes a store where you can purchase add-ons, but this is beyond the scope of most users, as the free feature set should be more than enough.

Features included:

  • Advanced cutting tools
  • Keying for green screen effects
  • Audio and video filters
  • Compositing tools
  • Layers and masking
  • 3D video support

Pros: Truly professional video editor without the price tag.

Cons: May take some time to learn the interface.

Best for: Youtuber Vlogs – Youtube uploading is built in.

8. DaVinci Resolve

Available on Windows, Mac, and Linux.

davinici

DaVinci Resolve is arguably the most advanced video editor on the list. While it has many professional features, its interfaces remain intuitive. Alongside video slicing and trimming you can master audio and correct color. You can also use it to add 2D and 3D titles to your video. If you just want to trim and upload your videos, the rich feature set of DaVinci Resolve may be too extensive. However, if your video project is a little more advanced, the free version of this software is hard to beat.

Features included:

  • Advanced trimming
  • Multicam editing
  • Color correction
  • Audio mastering

Pros: Intuitive interfaces and incredible color correction.

Cons: Its wide array of features make it a little overwhelming, and not all tutorials are free.

Best for: More advanced projects where you need to correct colors.

9. Openshot

Available on Windows, Mac, and Linux.

openshotUI

Openshot is entirely open source. It may remind some Mac users a little of iMovie with its easy to use drag and drop interface. However, Openshot packs more features than iMovie, including unlimited layers and audio mixing. This free editor strikes a nice balance between advanced features and a simple interface. It also allows real time previews when you create transitions between clips.

Features included:

  • Unlimited tracks / layers
  • Clip resizing, scaling, trimming, snapping, rotation, and cutting Video transitions with real-time previews
  • Compositing, image overlays, watermarks
  • Title templates, title creation, subtitles 3D animated titles (and effects)
  • Advanced Timeline (including Drag & drop, scrolling, panning, zooming, and snapping)

Pros: Open source, unlimited layers.

Cons: Not that many video tutorials.

Best for: Great for users just starting out with video editing.

10. iMovie

Available on Mac

imovie

Good old iMovie comes baked into Mac OS. Like most native Mac apps, this video editor is very intuitive to use. It features a drag and drop interface. Mac users can use iMovie as a playground for learning the basics of video editing. Once you are up to speed, you may find that alternative video editing software in this list may better suit your needs.

Features included:

  • Library of pre-made transitions
  • Video trimming
  • Audio editing
  • Split screen
  • 4K resolution support

Pros: Easy to learn.

Cons: Advanced users may find features a little limited; import and render times can be a little slow.

Best for: Mac users getting started with video editing.

Best Free Video Editing Software for Mobile

These apps are for people who like to capture and share videos from their smartphones and edit videos on the go. While there are many great video editing apps out there, this list covers some of the best, most intuitive, and free to use video software for mobile devices.

11. Splice

Splice, one of the best free video editing software for mobile, is only available on iOS.

splice

Splice is one of the most popular free video editing apps available for iPhone and iPad users. From the makers of GoPro, this app is simple to learn due to its simple interface. You can edit and cut videos in just a few taps. Add some transitions and sounds from the large built-in library and your video is ready to share.

Pros: Simple and very easy to use.

Cons: Only available for iOS.

Best for: When time is of the essence and you need to edit a video quickly.

12. Quik

Available on iOS and Android

quik

Quik is another free video editing app from the makers of GoPro. This app is similar to Splice but takes a little editing power away from the user. It has auto trim and edit features that do speed up the editing process, however, you can still manually edit your clips if you want more control.

It’s impressive what Quik can do automatically: it searches your video to find great moments and can even add transitions. If you really need a fast edit, this is the app for you. Also, unlike Splice, it’s available to Android users, too!

Pros: Auto editing features.

Cons: Some users may want more editing control.

Best for: Quick, individual video edits.

13. Adobe Premiere Clip

Available on iOS and Android

adobepremiereclip

Adobe Premiere Clip is a very popular video editing app. This app links into Adobe’s well known Premiere Pro product, but works equally well as a standalone app. Add music (your own or from the library included), transitions, auto correct the color, and you’re ready to share your video.

With its two modes, Freeform and Automatic, you can choose whether you retain editing control, or you let Adobe pick transitions and trim your clip automatically. Adobe users will be happy to know that this app syncs beautifully with other Adobe staples such as Lightroom.

Pros: Simple to use; Adobe Creative Cloud support.

Cons: Lacks a few basic functions like the ability to rotate clips.

Best for: Basic mobile video editing.

14. Horizon

Available on iOS and Android.

Horizon

Horizon is a simple app that enables users to capture videos horizontally no matter the position of their phone. When we rush to capture a moment we may forget to tilt the phone and capture the action horizontally. This app can help you solve that problem: all footage shot in the app is captured horizontally no matter how you tilt your phone. Check out this demo to see how it works. Avoid vertically captured videos and shoot quick videos in the Horizon app.

Pros: Very simple to use; never waste vertical content.

Cons: Android version is not as advanced as iOS version; some in-app purchases may be necessary depending on your needs.

Best for: Always capturing film horizontally.

Best Free Video Editing Apps for Instagram

We all love Instagram. But, as an ecommerce store owner you know the importance of making your brand look professional. Take your Instagram stories to the next level with these video editing apps. By the way, all the mobile video editing apps listed above also work great for Instagram, too. These video editing apps, however, have been designed specifically with the Instagram platform in mind.

15. Magisto

Available on iOS and Android.

Magisto is an award winning AI video editor. Add your photos, video, music and whatever else you want to include and it will automatically edit and create your video. And the results are pretty impressive. By choosing the type of story you want to tell, Magisto can save you lots of time by using its smart video editor to deliver your professional looking video. Great for quick Instagram posts. It makes it look like you spent at least a couple of hours editing your story.

Pros: The AI results are truly impressive.

Cons: You sacrifice some editing control for speed.

Best for: Quick, professional looking video edits.

16. Boomerang

Available on iOS and Android.

boomerang

Boomerang, available on iOS and Android, is an app created by Instagram. This app helps you use your photos to create more engaging content. Shoot a burst of upto 10 photos and Boomerang will turn them into a mini video. Thanks to native support, you can post to Instagram straight from the app.

Pros: Very easy to use and share content.

Cons: This is pretty much a one feature app.

Best for: Turning photos into engaging video content.

17. Anchor Video Maker

Available on iOS and Android.

Anchor

Anchor Video Maker is great for making audio content much more engaging. Don’t let those audio files go to waste: awesome videos can also start life as soundbites. This app automatically transcribes your audio files or podcasts into Instagram friendly videos. Check out this article, for a demo, tutorial, and download links.

Pros: Make audio files shareable.

Cons: Automatic transcription still needs proofreading.

Best for: Turning audio files into social shares.

18. Hyperlapse

Available on iOS only.

hyperlapse_app

Hyperlapse is great for timelapse videos. This app was actually also created by Instagram, so it really does have that platform in mind. By condensing a lot of time into a short video, Hyperlapse can create interesting videos for your followers. This app also does away with the need for tripods due to its impressive stabilization technology.

This type of timelapse video could work great to show how a product is made. When you’re done with your timelapse video you can share it straight to Instagram. You can also speed up your timelapse by up to 12x.

Pros: Stabilization technology means you don’t need a tripod.

Cons: iOS only; may take a couple of attempts till you get great results.

Best for: Shooting stunning timelapses.

19. Apple Clips

Available on iOS only.

apple clips

While some native Apple apps fall short, Apple Clips is one of the good guys. This app covers most of your video editing needs for Instagram. You can stitch clips together, and edit your timeline.

Two of the coolest features are the ability to edit your background and give your content a comic book feel. The next awesome feature is Live Titles: Just record a video and Apple Clips adds captions automatically while you speak that are in sync with your voice. After you’re done just go back and edit the titles to make sure they are correct.

Pros: Quick and easy to use; Live Titles feature.

Cons: iOS only.

Best for: iOS users looking for quick, interactive, Instagram friendly editing software.

20. FilmoraGo

Available on iOS and Android.

filmorago

Last but not least we come to FilmoraGo. FilmoraGo is a solid video editing app without any watermarks or paid subscriptions. Add music, transitions, and trim video clips all from within the app. You can easily add themes, text, and titles to your videos. There is a desktop version starting at $44.99 a year, but you can still get a lot of editing joy from the free mobile app.

Pros: Great for basic mobile video editing.

Cons: Not quite as good as the desktop app.

Best for: Adding text, themes, and overlays to customize your videos.

Summary

Use the free video editing software in this list to start creating stunning videos today. Boost your ROI and maximize your ad spend by creating product videos and ads that present your brand in a visually appealing way.

Take your Instagram stories and Youtube videos to the next level by using these video editors to quickly achieve professional results.

Happy editing!

Want to Learn More?

Do you have your own recommendations for the best video editing software? We would love to hear from you in the comments below.

Reputation Management SEO: How to Own Your Branded Keywords in Google – Whiteboard Friday

Posted by randfishA searcher’s first experience with your brand happens on Google’s SERPs — not your website. Having the ability to influence their organic first impression can go a long way toward improving both customer perception of your brand and conversion rates. In today’s Whiteboard Friday, Rand takes us through the inherent challenges of reputation management SEO and tactics for doing it effectively.

Click on the whiteboard image above to open a high-resolution version in a new tab!Video TranscriptionHowdy, Moz fans, and welcome to another edition of Whiteboard Friday. This week we are chatting about reputation management SEO.
So it turns out I’ve been having a number of conversations with many of you in the Moz community and many friends of mine in the startup and entrepreneurship worlds about this problem that happens pretty consistently, which is essentially that folks who are searching for your brand in Google experience their first touch before they ever get to your site, their first experience with your brand is through Google’s search result page. This SERP, controlling what appears here, what it says, how it says it, who is ranking, where they’re ranking, all of those kinds of things, can have a strong input on a bunch of things.

The challengeWe know that the search results’ content can impact…
Your conversion rate. People see that the reviews are generally poor or the wording is confusing or it creates questions in their mind that your content doesn’t answer. That can hurt your conversion rate.
It can hurt amplification. People…

Why Bookkeeping is Absolutely Essential for Financial Success

You might think bookkeeping is boring.

You’re probably right.

However, do you know what’s worse than something that’s boring?

Your business failing because you weren’t on top of your finances. Or even worse, losing money because you simply didn’t keep track of the dough.

This happened to Ben Brown.

After launching his Shopify store, Ben received plenty of orders: “It started off good (at least, I thought so!) … It wasn’t until I sent off all the orders that I realized my mistake: I’d miscalculated the shipping cost.”

He worried shoppers might abandon their carts once they saw the post and packaging costs, so he offered free shipping on all of his products.

“Once I’d paid my carrier for delivery, I actually lost money,” he says.

*Whoops*

Thankfully Ben recovered. But wouldn’t you prefer to avoid disastrous situations like this in your business?

With some basic bookkeeping knowledge, you can easily monitor how your business is performing, avoid mistakes, and make informed changes to improve it.

In this article, you’ll learn all about bookkeeping and bookkeeping tools.

Let’s dive in!

Post Contents

What Is Bookkeeping?

Bookkeeping is the process of recording and organizing financial data on a regular basis. This could be for an individual, business, or any other type of organization. It ensures that financial information is comprehensive, up to date, and accessible.

What is Bookkeeping?

Bookkeeping includes activities like:

  • Recording sales and tracking invoices.
  • Monitoring accounts receivable.
  • Billing clients for goods sold or services provided.
  • Verifying and recording invoices from suppliers.
  • Paying supplier invoices.
  • Prepare employee payroll and processing governmental reports.
  • Recording depreciation.
  • Producing accurate financial reports.

Today, most bookkeepers use online software.

But bookkeeping still requires an understanding of basic financial accounting.

Why is Bookkeeping Important?

Nicole Fende, the author of How to be a Finance Rock Star, said, “Many small businesses would rather face an angry barbarian horde than tackle their cash flow statement.”

How to be a Finance Rockstar

This might even be you.

However, “no matter what business you’re in, the ability to understand your books is essential,” says Lita Epstein, author of Bookkeeping Kit For Dummies.

Small business owners are often great at landing new customers or creating new products or services, but many fail to keep track of the fundamental financials.

That’s when things go south.

Businesses who lack financial clarity will often run into cash flow problems, rack up huge amounts of debt, forget to invoice customers, or pay bills late and incur fines.

Scott Scharf, the founder of Catching Clouds, an accounting service for ecommerce businesses, reveals that most of his customers don’t know whether they’re profitable.

“They’re not quite sure, and there’s a big difference between the cash in the bank and whether your business is profitable or not. They just don’t know where they stand, and so there’s a lot of stress related to not knowing.”

Catching Clouds

Staying on top of your finances is crucial for long-term business success.

“When you take the time to learn how to read and understand your books, you’ll have an excellent gauge of how well you’re doing,” says Lita Epstein.

“It also provides you with lots of information throughout the year so you can test the financial success of your business strategies and make course corrections early in the year if necessary to ensure that you reach your year-end profit goals.”

Sold? Okay, next up:

What do Bookkeepers Actually Do?

Bookkeepers use many of the same financial recording methods as accountants. These include collecting, organizing, and tracking receipts, invoices, and other transaction details.

Today, most bookkeepers use accounting software to track and make sense of the numbers.  (Stick around to learn about three of the best online accounting software tools.)

But this isn’t all bookkeepers do.

Professional bookkeepers are also responsible for a whole set of tasks on top of simple data input. They’re highly skilled in financial accounting software and should be able to:

  • Train members of your team to use business accounting software to ensure every transaction is correctly accounted for.
  • Resolve problems, mistakes, and confusion that arise in the financial side of the business.
  • Improve your business’ financial workflow, such as adding point-of-sale (POS) tools.
  • Streamline your payroll services to improve the way that you pay your employees.
  • Track interest, investments, and asset depreciation.
  • Set money aside for taxes.
  • Follow up invoices, and chase debtors for payment.
  • Prepare financial records for your accountant when tax season looms.
  • And more!

Bottom-line: Bookkeepers keep your business finances running smoothly so that you can focus on serving customers and growing the bottom-line.

Bookkeeping vs. Accounting

If you’re a small business owner, you might be wondering if you need to get a bookkeeper or an accountant – or both.

And now that you understand the need for bookkeeping, you’re might be wondering, “How does it differ from accounting?”

Good question.

The words “bookkeeper” and “accountant” are often used interchangeably. However, there are some key differences that determine the main responsibilities of each role.

Bookkeeping is a Subset of Accounting

An accountant, professional bookkeeper, or an employee of the business can do your bookkeeping.

If you’ve just started a business, chances are you’ll be doing the bookkeeping yourself.

This is no bad thing. When launching a new business venture, it’s crucial that you have an intimate grasp of your financial situation. What better way than to do the bookkeeping yourself?

Essentially, bookkeepers take care of the day-to-day financial work.

They keep detailed and accurate financial accounts and use this financial clarity to help make informed business decisions.

Accountants are Financial Experts

Accountants are usually qualified, registered members of a statutory association. So they often have titles like CPA (Certified Public Accountant) or CA (Chartered Accountants).

That’s how they can charge the big bucks.

These experts will use the accounts provided by the bookkeeper. They focus on analyzing the transactions to provide financial advice.

They’ll also use the information in the accounts to file tax returns and other reports.

Whereas bookkeepers handle the day-to-day financial tasks, accountants often step in on a quarterly basis to provide advice and make adjustments.

The infographic below summarizes bookkeeping vs. accounting:

Bookkeeping vs. Accounting

8 Vital Bookkeeping Accounts

Now that you understand the need for bookkeeping and how it relates to accounting, let’s talk about the different accounts bookkeepers keep.

“Each and every account has its purpose in bookkeeping, but all accounts certainly aren’t created equal,” says Epstein. “For most companies, some accounts are more essential than others.”

To gain a solid understanding of your financial situation, it’s important to understand the different accounts that your bookkeeper will use. This will enable you to make better decisions and increase the efficiency of the business.

Below is a quick summary of eight vital bookkeeping accounts, as outlined by Epstein in Bookkeeping for Dummies.

Bookkeeping for Dummies

1. Cash

All business transactions should pass through the cash account. In fact, this is so important, bookkeepers will often use two journals to track the activity (Cash Receipts and Cash Disbursements).

All cash coming in or going out must be recorded properly in the cash account.

2. Sales

Ah, sales — everyone’s favorite account.

This account is where you keep track of all incoming revenue from sales of your products or services.

Epstein notes that, “Recording sales in a timely and accurate manner is a critical job because otherwise, you can’t know how much revenue has been collected every day.”

3. Accounts Receivable

This is the account you use to track all money due from customers.

“Keeping Accounts Receivable up-to-date is critical to be sure that you send timely and accurate bills to customers,” writes Epstein.

It’s especially important if you sell products or services on credit.

To avoid cash flow problems, it’s imperative to know when you can expect to receive money owed to you. Plus, you don’t want to forget to collect money you’re owed!

4. Inventory

If you don’t know how much stock you have, you’re in big trouble, my friend.

So you must account for and track your inventory meticulously.

“Your bookkeeper contributes to this process by keeping accurate inventory records in an Inventory account,” writes Epstein. “The numbers you have in your books are periodically tested by doing physical counts of the inventory on hand.”

5. Accounts Payable

This account tracks the bills you need to pay.

Epstein notes that you “want to make sure you pay bills on time,” as not doing so will likely land you in hot water.

“Suppliers often penalize late-paying companies by cutting them off or putting them on cash-only accounts. On the flip side, if you pay your bills early, you may be able to get discounts and save money with suppliers.”

6. Office Expenses

“These expenses tend to creep up if they aren’t carefully monitored in the Office Expenses account,” says Epstein.

As Benjamin Franklin said, “Beware of little expenses. A small leak will sink a great ship.”

Beware Little Expenses

Depending on the type of business you run, this may also include office utility bills and rent, travel expenses, and entertainment expenses.

7. Payroll Expenses

Staff wages are often a business’ largest expense. Plus, employees won’t take kindly to being paid late or less than they’re owed.

“Accurate maintenance of this account is essential because it ensures that all governmental reports are filed and payroll taxes are paid,” according to Epstein. “And if you don’t take care of these responsibilities to the government, you’ll find yourself in some serious hot water.”

8. Retained Earnings

Use this account to track profits reinvested into the business.

“This account is cumulative, which means it shows a running total of earnings that have been retained since the company opened its doors,” notes Epstein.

The account is especially important to investors and lenders who need to track how the company is performing.

Other Bookkeeping Accounts Used

There are many other accounts that bookkeepers use, depending on the individual needs of the business. They include:

  • Purchases
  • Loans Payable
  • Owners’ Equity
  • Capital Accounts
  • Drawing Account
  • Purchases

Next up:

How to Do Bookkeeping: 3 Essential Tips to Remember

Having identified what bookkeeping is, and many of the accounts that are used, here are three essential tips to effective bookkeeping.

1. Keep Track of Absolutely Everything

And I mean, everything.

Noting all transactions allows you to keep comprehensive accounts in order to glean those essential financial insights. These will help you make effective strategic decisions.

What’s more, if you retain proof of your transactions and are audited or taken to court, you’ll have concrete evidence that you’ve done no wrong.

Plus, in the U.S., the IRS requires businesses to keep records of all transactions for up to 7 years.

IRS Keep Records

2. All Money Should Flow Through the Business Account or Petty Cash

If you don’t do this, things will get complicated – fast.

You might forget to record money received or spent. Or, you simply won’t have the proof of the transaction should you need it.

Neither is good.

Pay any money you receive directly into your business account or petty cash account before you spend it.

3. Always Keep Business and Personal Finances Separate

This is a no-brainer, but it can be easier said than done for small businesses or freelancers.

If you’re using a bank account for business and personal use, you may be tempted to spend money that you need for upcoming outgoings.

Plus, personal purchases might get confused with business expenses.

The best thing to do is to have completely separate accounts for your business transactions. Then, simply transfer money into your personal account (as wages) to make personal purchases.

This will keep your account transactions tidy and easy to understand.

Now let’s look at some tools.

3 Awesome Digital Bookkeeping Tools

There are many bookkeeping and accounting tools available online.

These tools make managing your organization’s finances easier, and you can gain valuable insights in just a few clicks.

Let’s take a look at three of the leading accounting and bookkeeping tools.

1. Wave

Recommended for: Small businesses on a tight budget.

Cost: Free.

Wave Accounting Software

With over 2 million users in over 200 different countries, Wave is one of the best free accounting software solutions available.

What’s more, unlike many other programs, Wave imposes no limits on how many invoices, estimates, customers, reports, etc., that you can use. Plus, the software even allows you to manage multiple small businesses.

It’s also simple to set up, and Wave University is particularly helpful when you get stuck. Although the software is free, you can upgrade to a paid account to access premium customer support features.

The software supports multiple currencies and integrates with PayPal, Stripe, and more.  Plus, there are mobile apps for Android and Apple devices.

In other words, it’s totally free and has great features.

#Win

The software is designed for small businesses. So if you’re running a larger company, you might find Wave lacking in more advanced features and capabilities.

However, Wave is a great choice if you’re just starting out.

2. Quickbooks

Recommended for: Established small businesses who have particular requirements.

Price: 30-day free trial, then $5 to $30 per month.

Quickbooks Accounting Software

Quickbooks was created by Intuit, which was founded in 1983 and has dominated accounting and personal finance for over three decades.

This accounting software is one of the most popular online with over 2.2 million users.

Quickbooks provides an incredible range of features. These include double-entry accounting, abundant reporting options, customizable invoices, payroll support, multiple currencies, and more.

Plus, Quickbooks integrates with over 200 services, such as Shopify and PayPal.

There’s a handful of different plans and optional feature add-ons. This makes it easy to select and pay for the specific features you need.

Quickbooks also provides two handy mobile apps for convenience.

Plus, the software allows you to connect to your bank account. This adds your account activity to your Quickbooks account automatically.

Quickbooks is perfect for established freelancers and small businesses who want an intuitive and advanced accounting tool.

3. Xero

Recommended for: Established businesses who want to keep things simple.

Price: 30-day free trial, then $9 to $70 per month.

Xero Accounting Software

Xero is another incredible online accounting software service.

In only 10 years the company has established offices all over the world and attracted 1 million users in over 180 countries.

Plus, Forbes named Xero the “#1 Innovative Growth Company.” Twice.

It doesn’t match the range of features that Quickbooks has. But Xero is very intuitive to use and fully lives up to its motto, “Beautiful Accounting Software.”

It’s equipped with all the vital features and works with over 160 currencies.

In particular, the inventory tracking feature and the ability to create purchase orders makes this software ideal for ecommerce businesses.

Xero also integrates directly with Shopify, as well as tons of other apps like PayPal and Stripe. Plus, there’s a mobile app which allows you to log expenses and other info while on the go.

This accounting software is perfect for established businesses who want professional accounting software that’s simple to use.

Summary

Bookkeeping is crucial to long-term financial success.

Without it, you could make unnecessary mistakes that could spell disaster for your business.

Simply staying on top of your finances will provide you with invaluable insights into the inner workings of your business. These will allow you to make informed decisions that will help you to grow your bottom line.

Who handles the bookkeeping in your business, yourself, an employee, or a contractor? Let us know in the comments below!

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