6 Key Accounting Software Features for SMEs

Accounting Software used in office

Getting the right accounting software should be one of the most essential steps in any business journey. But when we talk about small businesses, finding the perfect fit is even more crucial. The accounting software market is expected to reach a staggering $19.59 billion by 2026, showcasing the actual significance behind this industry.

Small business accounting software can save you time and money, not to mention a lot of stress trying to navigate endless spreadsheets and financial data. Numerous accounting software options are available on the market suitable for any budget, size, or type of business.

But what are the critical features of accounting software you should look out for? In this article, we will help you to make the right choice.

Benefits of Accounting Software

If you haven’t already switched from manual accounting to a tool that automates some of the processes, you might want to hear about the benefits of accounting software.

Accounting software can have a wide variety of benefits for your small business. The right tool can automate your financial processes, from transactions to payroll and accounts payable. It also allows you to run valuable data reports with a click of a button that you can utilise for financial planning and projections.

Likewise, small business accounting software can help organisations grow. They are scalable due to their high level of customizability, providing solutions to all types of business throughout their journey.

Lastly, through cloud accounting, companies can also easily tap into external help, linking in with their external financial advisors around the clock wherever they go, providing ease of mind.

Six Key Features of Accounting Software

1. Security Enhancement

Your accounting software handles one of the most sensitive data in your company. Besides critical financial data, small business accounting software contains a significant amount of personal data, like payroll or invoicing information, so security should always be your number one priority when finding the right tool.

Find software that has extensive security features added to it, such as two-step verification, permission level management, and encryption protocols. Cloud-based accounting software also tends to be a safer option, not just because of its intricate security capabilities but also because it limits the potential for human error, such as accidentally removing files from your system.

2. User Friendliness

When small businesses set out on their journeys, they have to juggle a lot with limited human resources. Often you find that small business accounting software is used by accountants and a variety of other staff members, from admins to business owners who don’t necessarily have tech or accounting knowledge.

Make sure that your chosen software is straightforward to use. You don’t want to waste valuable resources getting caught up on helplines. It’s ideal if your software provider also has various self-service tools and guides alongside 24/7 customer service to make your journey as smooth as possible.

3. Cloud Accounting

Choosing offline software may seem like the obvious option, but we strongly advise you to consider the cloud instead. The fact that 67% of accountants prefer cloud-hosted software indicates that it's the right choice for you.

There are many reasons why cloud accounting is usually more suitable for most organisations. In our increasingly digital world, cloud-based applications support remote work and help business owners to connect with their financial data anywhere, anytime. Your employees can easily access the software, whether in the office or at home, reducing the chance of accidental deletions or physical damage.

As 60% of small businesses outsource their financial functions in the UK, cloud accounting can be convenient for SMEs to collaborate with their external financial partners effectively. Cloud applications also usually carry added security as they are automatically updated to the latest versions that abide by the newest rules and regulations.

4. Integrations

No matter how many nifty features your accounting software has, it simply can't handle it all... unless it's armed with the right integrations!

Discovering a solution that seamlessly connects your accounting software with your existing tools, such as customer relationship management (CRM), sales platforms, or shipping systems, can work wonders for your business efficiency. It's a game-changer! By integrating these systems flawlessly, you'll streamline your operations and supercharge productivity, resulting in some remarkable benefits for your business.

5. Customisable Plans

When embarking on your business journey, gauging the workload your accounting software will face in the upcoming months can be a challenging task. Fluctuating sales, incoming investments, and unexpected market popularity of certain products can complicate the planning process. However, there are strategies to tackle this issue effectively.

By opting for the appropriate small business accounting software, you can ensure scalability and adaptability to accommodate your growing needs. Seek out tools that offer various service levels, allowing you to upgrade or downgrade as necessary. Additionally, carefully review the service agreements associated with these tools to determine the notice required for implementing changes.

6. Financial Reporting

As we have touched on in our previous article, effective financial planning can make or break your business. Keeping a close eye on your cash flow, product performance, and incoming payments can help leaders to make better business decisions and grow their companies faster.

The right accounting software has integrated financial reporting functions that can easily generate any data sets with a click of a button, from balance sheets to cash flow statements. Make sure to choose a tool that sets you up for success.
Although looking for the right small business accounting software can sound daunting, it can be a much easier process when you know what features you should keep a close eye on.

Here at Sanay, we can help you navigate your business's needs no matter what challenges you are facing.

As certified Xero advisors, we are well-equipped to offer you seamless, cloud-based bookkeeping solutions that ensure a hassle-free experience. With our services, you can conveniently access your financial information anytime, anywhere. We understand the importance of flexibility and accessibility in today's fast-paced business environment, and we are dedicated to providing you with the most innovative solutions available.

Contact us today