SME South Africa receives compensation from some of the companies listed on this page. Advertising Disclosure
Top Accounting Software for Small Business | SME South Africa

Top Accounting Software for Small Businesses in South Africa

Jun 24, 2022

Sage - Best accounting and payroll combo

    Invoicing

    Income & expense tracking

    Cash flow management

    Tax management

    Debtors Manager

Zoho Accounting - Best for integration with other apps

    30-day free trial

    45+ integrated application

    Payroll & HR

    Analytics & Reports

Xero - Best for 3rd party apps access

    Track income and expenses

    Inventory management

    Bank connections

    Mobile apps access

    Employee expense claims

Introduction

Cloud accounting software in South Africa helps business owners keep a finger on the pulse of their finances. 

There are standard tasks that all accounting software can help business owners with, including recording transactions, sending invoices, storing receipts, and tracking sales taxes, cash flow management, as well as a tax management feature that makes the filing of tax a tad easier. 

Cloud accounting has major advantages such as increased convenience and productivity. Entrepreneurs are not only able to access their business’s finances at any time and place but can eliminate repetitive tasks like data entry and the calculating of tax, revenue and cash flow forecasts, among others. 

Using cloud accounting software in South Africa can also help reduce your business’ monthly expenses by going paperless – you save costs on printing and paper.

Several major banks now offer cloud accounting software as an integrated service to their business clients, giving them the option to import and reconcile their bank account transactions and complete tasks such as invoicing clients.

Main Features

Accounts Payable

Record and keep track of what the company owes to its suppliers or vendors for products or services received on credit.

Accounts Receivable

The recording of money owed to a company by a customer who received products or services on credit.

Bank Reconciliation

Software is able to match the cash balances on the balance sheet to the corresponding amount on your bank statement and resolve any discrepancies.

Billing & Invoicing

Invoicing of clients and billing to suppliers. 

Budgeting/Forecasting

The budgeting feature allows you to see the company’s expected revenue and costs, market trends, cash flow and more. Using the cash flow forecast feature you can predict revenue and expenses associated with your business, as well as adjustments you plan to make to create the projection.

Expense Tracking

This feature helps you stay up-to-date with your expenses. It records your expenses by tracking receipts, invoices and other outgoing expenses.

Financial Reporting

Detailed reporting of your business’s finances, which includes your financial statements being provided to disclose the business’ financial data.

General Ledger

This process includes a journal entry or logging every business transaction as it occurs. The accounts recorded in a general ledger include assets, liabilities, equity, expenses, and income or revenue.

Inventory Management

Deals with the process of ordering, storing and using a company’s inventory.

Tax management

The management of tax, including managing sales tax (VAT).

Pricing

Monthly subscription – Cloud accounting software can cost from as little as R150 per month for small businesses. The majority of cloud accounting software packages offer a free 30-day trial.

You can opt to pay monthly or annually. Most providers allow you to change or upgrade your plan at any time.

Your subscription includes features such as invoicing, quotes generation, income and expense tracking, and integration with your bank accounts and other management systems. 

Additional features – There are additional features that you may have to pay for separately, such as payroll management, inventory management – you may also have to pay for additional users on your account. 

Buyer's Guide

There are several accounting software options available on the market. Here are a few tips to help you choose the right one for your business.

 

Consider the following:

24/7 Access

One of the biggest advantages of using cloud accounting software is that it can be accessed from any device, location, and at any time of day. To facilitate this, many of the options available come with a mobile app where you can manage essential tasks such as invoicing and payroll. This can help small businesses run more efficiently and flexibly.

Ease of use

It has never been easier to get yourself up and running so you can start invoicing and balancing your books right away. For business owners it is important to choose the option that provides an easy-to-understand dashboard with access to all your important financial information. Also ensure that you can easily manage tasks such as track and pay bills on time, claim expenses, connect to your bank feed, as well as accept payments.

Your budget

There is little doubt that accounting software has greatly reduced the costs of accounting services while also offering incredible value. However, it is still a good idea to carefully examine your budget to determine how much your business can afford to spend. Before you commit, also consider your business operations and what tools and functionalities you really need. Most providers offer tiered packages making it easier for business owners to only select packages that suit their needs and budget.

Security

Accounting software offers more security over your data than any other options. Most cloud computing services backup your data hourly and they use the latest in security software. Other additional safety measures that can be implemented are two-step authentication to log into your account.

Accounting Software benefits

  • Flexibility – Can work from anywhere, not limited to a single PC or device.
  • Efficiency – Saves small businesses time and money.
  • Clarity – Can see your current financial position at any time.
  • Accuracy – Able to automate and speed up the calculations of business expenses such as tax and payroll, etc.
  • Tax compliance – Able to track and manage sales tax (VAT).
Compare our best picks

Pros

Cost-effective, without skimping on important features

Cons

They only offer annual packages. 

Monthly subscription – Cloud accounting software can cost from as little as R150 per month for small businesses. The majority of cloud accounting software packages offer a free 30-day trial. You can opt to pay monthly or annually. Most providers allow you to change or upgrade your plan at any time.

Zoho Accounting

Pros

Access to a wide variety of applications, from CRM and customer care management to spreadsheets.

Cons

Payroll functionality does not seem to be available in South Africa.

Zoho is a business software solutions company with over 20 years of experience in business software development. 

Pros

You are able to connect with over 800 smart business apps, including third party apps, as well as add-ons.

Cons

More expensive than comparable cloud accounting software brands with similar features.

Xero accounting software allows its customers to connect with 800+ smart business apps, including third-party apps like Stripe and Vend in the Xero app marketplace and add-ons like Xero Expenses and Xero Projects.