This article is part of a larger series on Accounting Software.
What We Recommend Zoho Invoice for
Zoho Invoice is one of our choices for the best mobile accounting apps because it makes it easy for self-employed individuals and small teams to manage their invoices to customers, collect payments, reconcile invoices, remind customers to pay overdue invoices, and send estimates to clients. Zoho Invoice can be your daily driver for capturing time and expenses to bill clients as well as tracking payments received.
Zoho Invoice Is Especially Good For
- Tracking client billings: Zoho Invoice tracks billable expenses that can be added to an invoice later.
- Billing clients by project: Zoho Invoice allows you to create multiple projects per customer and assign time and expenses by project. Once assigned to projects, you can include these expenses as part of client billings.
- Service providers: If you offer a professional service, such as accounting or law, or personal service like lawn care, Zoho Invoice fits your type of business. You can use the timesheet feature to track employee time by client for later billing.
- Zoho users: Of course, Zoho users can connect Zoho Invoice with other Zoho products like Zoho Books, our pick for overall best accounting software for freelancers.
Zoho Invoice Is Not a Good Fit For
- Individuals looking for simple bookkeeping with invoicing features: Zoho Invoice isn’t a bookkeeping app and cannot produce financial statements. Freshbooks made our list of the best small business accounting software because of its professional-looking and outstanding invoicing features and its easy-to-understand accounting interface.
- Companies collecting sales tax from multiple states: Collecting sales tax from multiple states can be difficult with Zoho Invoice. You have to manually set up tax rates for each jurisdiction and then add the correct jurisdiction to each invoice. QuickBooks Online, our choice for overall best invoicing software, is an excellent software program for collecting sales tax. It computes the sales tax based automatically on the location of the customer.
- Companies looking for accounts payable (A/P) management: Zoho Invoice only processes invoices to customers or accounts receivable (A/R). We recommend Invoicera, one of our picks for best invoicing software, if you want to manage both A/R and A/P in the same invoicing program.
Zoho Invoice Pros and Cons
|Free for all with no ads or in-app purchases||No approval workflows for issuing invoices|
|Customizable invoice||No workflow for approving or reimbursing employee expenses|
|Includes project time management features||Not a full bookkeeping system|
|Integrates with Zoho’s other specialty apps||Manages outgoing invoices only|
|Easy data migration from other invoicing apps|
Zoho Invoice Pricing
Zoho Invoice is absolutely free, with no credit card required, no ads, and no in-app purchases. You’ll enjoy the following benefits:
- Unlimited invoices to unlimited customers
- Create recurring invoices
- Use multiple currencies
- Manually add sales tax rates
- Accepts bank transfers, checks, or cash
- Project time management features
- Issue estimates to customers
Zoho Invoice Features
Sign in or create an account, and you can enjoy Zoho Invoice’s valuable features. After logging in, you’ll land on the dashboard:
The Dashboard will show you a quick snapshot of everything happening within your organization. At the top, you’ll see an aging schedule for your receivables. Below the aging schedule is the Sales and Expenses graph, which displays your sales and expense levels plus receipts. You can change the period of reporting as well to see how well you perform every month.
Below the graph is the Projects overview, which shows information about ongoing projects, including the number of unbilled hours and unbilled expenses related to each project. Beside it is the pie graph of all your expenses. You can see here which type of expense gets the most significant portion of your operations.
Finally, you can see sales, receipts, and outstanding balances for unpaid receivables at the bottom part of the dashboard. It segregates them by day, week, month, quarter, and year.
In the left-side panel, click Customers to see your list of customers. To add a new one, just click the plus sign on the panel:
When adding customers, you can set specific tax rates, payment terms, and contact persons. Once you’ve added a new customer, you can also use the Customers tab to view your transactions with them. Click the name of the customer, and Zoho Invoice will show you all the information about that customer:
After setting up your customers, you can begin invoicing. Head to Invoices to see the list of all your invoices:
You can also change the filter to see specific invoices under the category. Click All Invoices, and a drop-down menu will appear:
Creating an Invoice
You can create two types of invoices: recurring and nonrecurring. For recurring invoices, go to the left-side panel and click Recurring Invoices. Zoho Invoice will generate and send these invoices via email automatically on whatever schedule you choose:
You can track your recurring invoices on the same tab. Zoho will inform you of the next invoice and its status. This feature is helpful if you have clients that you bill the same amount to every month.
You can also create a nonrecurring invoice on the Invoices tab. Invoice numbers are auto-generated, but you can reset them by clicking the gear icon beside the invoice number. You can set the payment terms of the invoice, but its default setting is “due on receipt.” If you intend to extend credit to your clients, you can set a custom credit term or a predefined term in the Terms drop-down menu.
After adding the particulars of the invoice, click ‘Save as Draft’ or ‘Save and Send’ to complete the invoice. If you save it as a draft, you can still edit the invoice. Otherwise, Zoho will send the invoice to the email address of your client. Sent invoices will be marked as “Pending”:
Invoice status can be seen on the top left corner of the actual invoice in the form of a colored ribbon:
- Sent: Blue ribbon
- Overdue: Orange ribbon
- Paid or Partially Paid: Green ribbon
Clients will receive an email with the invoice. If you accept credit card payments or bank transfers, clients can click Pay Now and they’ll be redirected to a secure payment channel:
Invoicing items are your products and services. To add or view these items, go to Items on the left-side panel. From there you can view your products or services including their description, price, and usage. Click an item to see more information about it.
To record payments, go to your client’s invoice and click Record Payment. A new window will appear where you can add payment details such as amount received, bank charges, sales tax, payment date and mode, reference number, and notes. If there are supporting documents, you can attach a file.
Once payments are recorded, you can see the payment receipt on the Payments Received panel. You can also send this to your client as a receipt:
For clients that have forgotten to pay, you can send all of them a reminder automatically via email instead of manually emailing them one by one:
One of Zoho Invoice’s features is expense recording. You can record billable and nonbillable expenses in the app. If you add a billable expense, Zoho Invoice will ask you to tag an expense to a client and possibly a project. Afterward, you can generate an invoice for billable expenses automatically and send it to your client. You can also add mileage expenses on Zoho Invoice. You can input odometer readings or distance traveled when computing your mileage costs.
If you handle projects with several clients, Zoho Invoice has a time tracker as well. You can either track your work hours with Zoho’s tracker or manually enter hours spent when working. Every time log is added to the project based on the hourly rate:
From there, you can bill clients on your hours worked by creating an invoice. Zoho will ask you about the invoice period, and it’ll include all billable hours and expenses within that period automatically.
Zoho Invoice Alternatives
Best for: Complete bookkeeping software with professional-looking invoices
Best for: Invoicing and all-around accounting needs
Best for: Managing incoming and outgoing invoices
Starting from: $15 to $50
Starting from: $25 to $180
Starting from: Free to $149
Zoho Invoice is a great app with outstanding invoicing features. It’s incredible that such a complete, unlimited app is available for free. If your small business can’t commit to annual or monthly plans, Zoho Invoice is a good start. As your business grows, you can move to a complete bookkeeping system via simple integration with Zoho Books.