One of the best things about being a small-business owner is being able to deduct most of your work-related expenses — as long as you remember to keep detailed records of your purchases.
Want to lower your taxable income to save money on your next IRS bill? These four mobile apps can help you track your business expenses.
- Mint (Android and iOS; free) — Although the Intuit-owned Mint is designed with household budgeting in mind, it’s also a great tool for tracking small-business income and expenses. If you already have a personal account, you can set up a separate professional one that draws data from your business bank and credit card accounts. You can train the software to recognize different categories of expenses, and manually enter cash purchases. For more information, check out this blog post by FiddlerStudios on using Mint for business finances.
- Shoeboxed (Android and iOS; free, with membership options) — Shoeboxed is a bookkeeping service for the digital age. You can send an envelope full of paper receipts and bills to the company
, which scans everything and sends you an itemized list of your expenses in a digital file for export to other programs for analysis. Or use the mobile app to take photos of your receipts and bills and email them to Shoeboxed. The app is free, but you’ll pay to send in paper receipts: The Business Plan membership charges $49.95 per month for up to 500 business receipts.
- MileBug (Android, iOS, and Windows; $2.99) — Do you do a lot of driving for work? Tracking your mileage can be a pesky task. This app records your mileage with real-time GPS and automatically calculates your 56.5 cent-per-mile deduction. You can then generate reports to export to Excel or Numbers to file with your other business expenses.
- Expensify (Android, BlackBerry, iOS, and Windows; free) — This app helps business travelers automate their expense reports by linking to bank and credit card accounts to track purchases in real-time. Paying with cash? Take a photo of the receipt with your phone and Expensify can pull details from it. You can manually add your mileage log (and any other undocumented expenses) and generate an expense report. You and one employee may use the tool for free; you’ll be billed $5 to $10 a month for each additional employee who uses the app.