Expensify: Features, Plans & Alternatives
Expensify is an iPhone and Android app that allows you to quickly and easily manage your expenses. Whether you are a student, a business owner, or someone who just wants to be more organized, this app will help you stay on top of your finances.
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What is Expensify?
Expensify is a cloud-based expense tracker that syncs with your bank account, credit cards, and even PayPal. This means you will always have an up-to-date record of your spending activities. You can use this information in many ways. You can categorize your spending by project, person, or even holiday.
You can also use the history feature to see your spending trends over any time frame you choose. For example, you can see what you spent last year on your birthday, what you spend on your anniversary, or what you spend when you travel for work.
You can also use Expensify to create budgets and set goals. The app has a built-in calculator that makes it easy to see if you are on track to meet your budget. If you want to, you can share your budget with others through email or the web.
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Expensify also has a number of useful reporting features. You can generate summaries of your transactions such as a yearly cash-flow report or a summary of your spending by category.
The app also has a calendar feature that shows you at a glance when you are near an upcoming payment date for a bill. You can assign a reminder message to the event so you won’t forget about it.
Another useful feature is the ability to categorize your transactions. For example, you could use this feature to classify your meals as business, leisure, charitable, personal, or something else.
Expensify also has a very nice expense tracking history which lets you see a graph of all your transactions. This history can be exported to CSV (comma-separated values) format for use in other programs.
Expensify Pricing: How much does it cost?
Surprisingly, there is no charge to download and use the app. However, if you want detailed reports and advanced features, you will have to pay a monthly fee.
The basic version of the app is free and gives you all the features described above. The Pro version of Expensify is $15 per month and adds these features:
- Ability to attach receipts to expenses
- Budgets and advanced reports
- Invoicing and payment capabilities:
- Tracking multiple people or projects
Expensify also has an Enterprise plan that costs $100 per month and gives you access to all of the features of the Pro version plus the following:
- Credit card processing via Stripe.com
- Ability to track up to 10 different projects or people
- Bulk import of transactions from Quicken, MS Money, or Excel
- PDF invoices and bills Billing and collections through PayPal
Who Should Use Expensify?
Anyone who needs an easy way to keep on top of their personal finances should consider using Expensify. Whether you are a student, a small business owner, or someone who just wants to be more organized, this app will help you stay on top of your spending.
No matter where you are, Expensify can track your spending. It has a feature where you can take a picture of a receipt, and it will automatically be added to your account.
How to Cancel your Expensify Subscription?
Subscriptions are auto-renewed unless you cancel within the trial period.
If this is a concern for you, go to your Account Settings and you will find a “Cancel Subscription” button at the bottom of the screen. Just click that button and you will be prompted to enter your payment information again in order to keep using the app.
Note: This does not apply if you have upgraded to a paid version of the app. In that case, you cannot re-subscribe with another payment method.
What kind of information does it collect?
On the whole, it collects only what you put into it. For example, if you use the location feature to track your mileage when you run or cycle, it will only record those miles. It does NOT collect any credit card details nor does it make any attempt to authenticate the purchases you are recording.
The only personally identifiable information (PII) collected is your email address and the name of your credit card(s), if you choose to use them. All Personally Identifiable Information (PII) is collected by Expensify and kept secure within the app and on its servers.
PII is used only as described below:
To send you automated email messages describing how to improve your use of the app To notify you about new features and updates To send you information about new services offered by Expensify (for example, if you have a fundraising event, we might send you information about other apps and web sites that could help you with your efforts)
How Does It Share Your Information?
Your information is not shared with any third parties except:
As noted above, it may be shared with Sponsors in order to provide the named third party with the product or service being promoted. Your information may be passed on to service providers who assist with fraud detection and prevention and/or with providing customer service.
If you use the location feature of the app, your geographic location will be transmitted to Sponsors whenever your receipt is added to your Expensify account. Your location will be determined by using the GPS chip in your device. To prevent abuse, Google will only use your IP address to determine your approximate location and will not associate it with any other data they may have.
Free and Cheap! Expensify is a great tool but it is also very expensive. There are plenty of free alternatives that do almost everything Expensify does – plus a few more things – for less money. Here are just a few of them:
1. Receipt Hog
This is a web-based service that allows you to create receipts (you can even take a picture of a receipt with your mobile phone) and then it automatically uploads all your receipts to a private website where you can go back and add notes and categorize the transactions. You can have it send you reminders to file your taxes and it will even calculate the amount of your refund for you. It’s free for up to three receipts and it has an excellent iPhone app. The Android app is not as good but it’s free for the first seven days and it’s easy to switch between using the web app or the mobile app.
Get it here: http://receipthog.com/
2. Receipt Hog Pro
This upgraded version of the service allows you to sync your receipts via their web service or email, create and print PDF invoices and bills, offers support for multiple credit cards and PayPal accounts, and removes ads. It’s $4.00 per month or $60 per year.
Get it here: http://pro.receipthog.com/
3. Receipts Manager
This is a Windows-only program that works with almost any financial software package. It is extremely powerful and has all the features you would expect to pay $60 per year for Receipt Hog Pro. Plus, it has a few extras that make it worth the money… like the ability to group transactions by the person (for example, all the purchases you make as part of a business trip) and the ability to send receipts via email. It costs $3.95 per year.
Get it here: http://receiptsmanager.com/
4. SAP Concur
This is a much more expensive option than the others mentioned here but it has some unique features that make it worth considering. It can be used both as an online service and as part of a desktop or server-based software package. For example, it will track your inventory, process your orders, keep your accounts payable and accounts receivable in order, and help you generate profit and loss statements.
You can integrate it with almost any accounting software package so you don’t have to learn a new system. Plus, it offers a 30-day free trial. Pricing starts at $1,195 per month plus applicable taxes and fees for a single user.
Get it here: http://www.sapconcur.com/
5. Zoho Expense Manager
This is one of the more popular options among small business owners. It has a simple, easy-to-use interface and offers unlimited users at no extra cost. It also has mobile apps for iPhone, Android, and BlackBerry. It offers good online support and has a 30-day free trial.
Whereas Receipt Hog will only let you enter three receipts, Zoho lets you add as many as you want (unlimited). They are all categorized for you. You can sync your receipts via their web service or email, create and print PDF invoices and bills, and it even has a built-in way to send receipts via email. It’s free for up to five transactions and it has an excellent mobile app. The web app is very good but the mobile apps are superior – in my opinion.
Get it here: http://expensemanager.zoho.com/
6. QuickBooks Online
This is the free version of the famous accounting software package. It is very limited in what it can do but if you just need something simple and free, this is a great option. Like Receipt Hog, it has a 30-day free trial.
Get it here: http://online.quickbookstool.com/
7. Emburse Abacus
This is a much more robust option than the others mentioned here. It’s expensive ($195 per month plus applicable taxes and fees for a single user) but it offers all the functionality of the more expensive options… without any of the hassles. Plus, it integrates with almost every other financial system you could possibly have… like Xero, MYOB, Peachtree, and many others. It also has mobile apps for iPhone, Android, and BlackBerry.
Get it here: http://www.emburse.com/products/abacus/
8. Pleo Accounting
This is a web-based accounting system (like QuickBooks Online) that is easy to use. It’s inexpensive (just $15 per month plus applicable taxes and fees for an individual user) and it has a 30-day free trial.
This is a desktop-based accounting system that works with both Windows and Macintosh computers. It’s inexpensive (you get three users free with your purchase of every additional user) and it has excellent online support.
It lacks a few features the others have (like integration with mobile devices) but for the most part, it’s a very good option.
Get it here: https://pleo.com/
Expensify vs Quickbooks
I use both Quickbooks Online and Expensify on a regular basis. I personally like the simplicity of Quickbooks Online… plus… it has all the other features I need.
Here are some of the main reasons I use Expensify instead of Quickbooks Online:
- No integration with my mobile devices – I don’t carry an iPhone or an iPad or a Blackberry… so… I can’t use the amazing expense management features of these devices with Expensify.
- I have to pay $195 per month for three users… when… I could be paying only $15 per month for myself (or even $0 per month if I was only using one user).
- I have to pay $35 per month for every additional user… when…I could be paying only $15 per month for each additional user.
- It has an easy-to-use mobile app for iPhone, Android, and BlackBerry users. QuickBooks Online does not.
- It is integrated with many other systems and apps, like Facebook, Twitter, Salesforce, Zendesk, Dropbox, and much more. QuickBooks Online is not.
In my opinion, the pros of using QuickBooks Online far outweigh the cons. But if you are on a really tight budget, you may want to consider Expensify.
How to Email Receipts to Expensify?
- Open your email client. Click on the “Send/Receive” icon in the top toolbar.
- In the “Send As” section, select “Email.” In the “Subject” section, type “Expense Report” without the quotes.
- In the body of the email, click the button that says “Attach File.”
- Browse to the location where you have stored your receipt (this is usually your desktop or laptop computer).
- Select all the receipts you want to send. Click the button that says “Open” (this will make your receipts visible).
- Click the button that says “Send.” Voila! Your receipts will now be attached to an email and sent to the person who is responsible for processing your expense report.
How do I get my receipts into Expensify?
You can attach receipts via email just like described above… or… you can upload them manually. For example, if you use Safari on your computer, you can go to the page where your receipts are stored… and then… click on the button that says “Download” next to the attachment icon. This will save the receipts to your desktop. Then, all you have to do is attach those receipts to an email to send to Expensify and your receipt problem will be solved.
How do I keep track of my inventory?
You don’t have to. If you are like most people, you probably over-report your inventory because it makes you feel good to know you have plenty of supplies on hand. However, this is not really necessary… at least… not if you are selling your products through direct sales or a storefront.
First, if you are selling directly from your own inventory, there is no need to keep track of it… since… you will always know exactly how much product you have on hand. However, if you are using a third-party fulfillment service like Amazon or another online retailer, you absolutely must know the true quantity of inventory they are holding for you.
In this article, I tried explaining all questions related to Expensify.
If you already use some of the other expense report apps mentioned in this article… and… you are still frustrated with your current expense report process, I would like to hear from you. It may be that using some of these apps combined with using Expensify will work for you.