Do you still save your business receipts in a big, unorganized pile on your desk or in a drawer (or maybe a shoebox)?
Honestly, my time feels better spent trying to make advertising decisions or staff decisions, but the reality is…I also MUST pay attention to the finances of my business. Left to my own devices, I tend to procrastinate when it comes to expense receipts and accounting types of things.
“Oh, it’s just a couple of receipts…” I tell myself, as I toss them into an ever-growing pile on top of my filing cabinet. And every month, without fail, this ‘couple of receipts’ thing has grown to 50 or 100+ receipts…ugh.
Then the first of the month rolls around and I panic once again about my disorganization last month…and spend 3-4 hours getting things organized and sorted out. In time time to start all over again with the next month. Does this sound familiar??
Shoeboxed: Receipt Tracking and Organizing
Shoeboxed is a web-based accounting service designed to ease the bookkeeping burden of small business owners (and road warriors) by organizing their receipts, bills and even business cards for them.
There are three paid account levels and one free. Under the paid levels, customers mail their business documents in sturdy, self-addressed stamped envelopes to Shoeboxed, which then scans and organizes them into an account.
You are probably wondering how exactly Shoeboxed is going to help you organize. You have several options, and my favorite is the first one. (this is genius, in my opinion)
1. You can simply take photos of receipts with an iPhone or Android (or your iPad!) and email them to your secured Shoeboxed address. (your own personal ‘receipt vault’ awaits on the other end)
2. You can e-mail receipts directly from your desktop. (you will need a scanner for small paper receipts)
3. The Shoeboxed premium service allows you to just scoop up the pile of papers and receipts and mail them, in a special envelope, for processing by Shoeboxed. (kind of like your own personal file clerk)
Once processed into the system, the documents can be viewed, e-mailed, printed or downloaded into a variety of formats, including Excel, CSV, PDF, Quickbooks and Quicken. Shoeboxed also helps get your business ready for tax season by keeping digital copies of records, which are accepted by the IRS, all in one place.
Business cards can be exported to e-mail accounts, LinkedIn and Salesforce.
What About the Security of My Documents and Receipts?
This issue concerns a lot of people, especially those who might want to opt for the mail-in service. “Are my documents safe? What about my personal information that is being sent through the mail?…” You may be wondering the same things.
The security of the website AND the Shoeboxed facility is taken very seriously by the company. Here is what their website has to say about this concern: (source: www.shoeboxed.com/security)
Your Online Security
Receipts, business cards and other documents are important records of your daily life and business, and we are absolutely dedicated to the security of your information. From day one when we started programming the site, we have kept security as our highest priority, and we believe that it is in fact safer to store your documents on Shoeboxed.com than it is to keep them at home.
When you start using Shoeboxed, the new permanent home of your receipts and business cards is shoeboxed.com, where you can view them from any Internet-connected computer. The connection between your Internet browser and shoeboxed.com is secured by Secure Socket Layer encryption (or SSL), the same strong encryption used by online banks and medical information services. This makes it virtually impossible for someone to intercept and make sense of communication between your computer and our servers.
While your receipts and business cards are housed at Shoeboxed, we are dedicated to keeping them safe and secure. Our networks are designed with security in mind and are constantly monitored.
Shoeboxed has been certified by TRUSTe, the trusted leader on online privacy and security. A nonprofit organization, TRUSTe promotes solid security practices on the Internet. After investigating our privacy policies and our practices securing your personal data, TRUSTe has certified Shoeboxed as a site that protects your privacy.
To insure against hardware failure or natural disaster, our servers are backed up at least every 24 hours to an undisclosed remote location. We are equipped to have the most recent backup of the site up and running on new servers at a remote site within five business days of a catastrophe. For this reason alone, Shoeboxed.com can be much safer than your home computer for organizing receipts and business cards. Our servers also have multiple connections to the internet for uninterrupted access.
Receipt Mail-In Security
While your receipts and business cards are in transit, they are subject to the security policies of the U.S. Postal Service (or whatever carrier you use to expedite them). Once we receive them, an authorized Shoeboxed team member will retrieve them from the USPS bring them directly to our processing facilities. All of our employees are subject to background checking before we hire them, and all employees closely supervised and highly trained.
Our offices are protected by a 24/7 security service. Though we are part of a lively, pedestrian friendly area of Durham, we are the only people with access to our operations facility. Our offices are also protected with digital locks, key-card access and double locks again to our processing facilities.
- Pay plans – The Lite Plan is $9.95 per month and includes 50 documents; the Classic plan is $29.95 and allows 150; the business level is $49.95 a month and provides for up to 500 documents per month to be sent.
- Security – A 128-bit SSL data encryption system is used to protect information. Shoeboxed will send original copies back to the customer if desired under the Classic and Business plans, or will shred them on site under other plans or at the request of the sender.
- Compatibility – Data can be used with Excel, CSV, PDF, Quickbooks and Quicken. Digital receipts are accepted by the IRS and business cards can be exported to e-mail contact lists, LinkedIn and Salesforce.
- Turnaround – Documents sent digitally are processed within one business day, while those mailed will be done within two to four business days.
Shoeboxed Reviews: What do other users say?
Most users of Shoeboxed report being very happy with the ease of the service and the way it helps to reduce paper clutter AND save time. The iPhone/Android apps very are popular. (and again, don’t forget your iPad..that’s how I snap quick photos of my receipts)
Overall, Shoeboxed is an asset to any small business owner looking to get away from the mundane tasks of bookkeeping and filing of receipts. It also helps to eliminate paper clutter by digitally organizing documents. Get the 30-day free trial account and see how well it works for you.