Learn about the features of FreshBooks and Wave and compare which one is better for your business in 2023. Find out which software is best suited for your accounting needs.
When your business needs accounting services, there are plenty of options available. If you’re a business, you probably have an accounting department staffed with the best and brightest. If you are an SME, you don’t always have that luxury and you have to turn to services and software solutions. If you’re a freelancer, you may just need a simple solution to keep your numbers up.
Don’t worry – there are services out there that can do a great job with your finances, many of which are less expensive than, say, QuickBooks. What are these options? Let’s look at two: FreshBooks and Wave.
What is FreshBooks?
FreshBooks is billing and accounting software aimed at small businesses. With a focus on ease of use, FreshBooks offers solutions for freelancers, self-employed persons, companies that rely on contract work, and standard companies with employees.
FreshBooks originally started as an invoice management tool and eventually evolved into a full-fledged accounting platform. Based in Toronto, FreshBooks serves over 160 countries and is one of the easiest to use accounting platforms on the market. Even if you don’t speak ‘bookkeeping’ fluently, you can still use the software.
In my personal experience, FreshBooks made me feel like I knew my way around numbers, when in reality I always struggled with accounting. If FreshBooks can work for someone like me, it will appeal to business people.
What is Golf?
Wave calls itself “one-stop money management for small business owners” by providing financial services to small businesses. Wave simplifies the process of creating and sending invoices and helps you stay organized ahead of tax season. Wave has an in-house team of bookkeeping, bookkeeping and payroll coaches to ease the burden when things get complicated.
Wave can help you with your billing, payments, accounting, banking and payroll so you can stop chasing customers for money, get paid faster, track income and expenses, simplify your banking, pay your staff and can get help when needed.
FreshBooks vs. Wave: feature comparison table
|Billing and follow-up||Yes||Yes|
|Turnover tax and collection follow||Yes||Yes|
|Track unpaid bills||Yes||Yes|
|Record expense receipts||Yes||Yes|
|Reconcile bank accounts||Yes||Yes|
|Track fixed assets||No||No|
|Salary integration||enthusiasm||Wave payroll|
|ACH Payment Processing||Yes||Yes|
FreshBooks features, pricing, pros and cons
The features FreshBooks offers depend on the plan you choose, of which there are four:
- Light: Five billable customers, unlimited and customizable invoices (Image A), unlimited expense entries, unlimited estimates, accepts credit card payments and ACH bank transfers, automated bank imports, unlimited time tracking, tax reports and VAT tracking, and mobile mileage tracking.
- Plus: All features in Lite, plus 50 billable customers, automatic receipt scanning with the mobile app, dual-entry accounting and business health reports, customer retention, accountant access, and bank reconciliation tools.
- Premium: All the features in Plus, as well as unlimited billable clients, custom email templates and signatures, project profitability tracking, and accounts payable tracking.
- Select: Everything in Premium plus access for two team members, a personal account manager, customized training and reduced credit card transaction rates.
- Lite: $15 per month or $180 per year.
- Plus: $30 per month or $360 per year.
- Premium: $55 per month or $660 per year.
- Select: Contact FreshBooks for a quote.
- Simplified expense tracking.
- Detailed time registration.
- Seamless project collaboration.
- Generate financial reports easily.
- Mobile app makes it easy to work with financial data on the go.
- Easy access to tax advisors and other accounting professionals.
- Half the price of QuickBooks.
- WePay integration means paying the higher processing fees of $0.30 per transaction plus 2.9% of the total.
- The mobile app does not give you access to reports.
- Doesn’t work well for larger, more complex companies.
- Few customization options.
- Cost extra to add additional team members.
Wave features, prices, pros and cons
- Unlimited tracking of income and expenses.
- Customizable sales tax.
- Unlimited bank and credit card integrations.
- Accounting reports and annual accounts can be exported.
- Dashboard for at-a-glance cash balances and invoice statuses.
- Digital receipt upload and transaction management.
- Unlimited billing (Figure B).
- Payment reminders.
- Estimates can be turned into invoices after approval.
- Online credit card payments (for a fee).
- Optional invoice and account synchronization.
- Create and send invoices and then track their payment status through notifications.
Wave billing, account and banking features are free to use. However, there are additional services and transaction costs.
For the Payroll functions, it is a fee of $40 per month plus $6 per active employee and/or $6 per paid independent contractor. You can also pay $149 per month for booking support and/or a one-time fee of $379 for accounting and payroll coaching.
The Wave transaction fee is 2.9% + $0.60 USE per transaction, 3.4% + $0.60 per AMEX transaction, and 1% per bank transfer transaction with a minimum of $1 USD.
- Free service for basic accounting needs.
- Unlimited number of users and financial accounts.
- Highly customizable billing.
- Very user friendly user interface.
- Extensive online help center.
- The community forum is where you can get help from the Wave user community.
- Not scalable for larger companies.
- No time registration.
- Basic reporting capabilities.
Which software you choose for your business
The choice between FreshBooks and Wave is easy. Wave is free for unlimited access for users, clients and accountants. While FreshBooks has more advanced accounting features, with Wave you can get most of those same options and not pay a dime. The only downside to Wave is that it scales less well than FreshBooks.
Ultimately, if you’re a small business or freelancer and don’t have the budget for an accounting or billing service, Wave is your best bet. However, if you’re planning to scale your business and don’t mind paying a little more cost, FreshBooks is what you’re looking for.
Visit for more related content FreshBooks vs. QuickBooksAnd the best invoicing apps for small businesses and the self-employed.