A Time Saver for those with lots of receipts
The concept is simple, send them your receipts and bills and get an item that you can download into QuickBooks or other software to minimize data entry. The execution still needs some improvements.
I opened Intuit App Center and signed in to my account. I quickly found the application and signed up. You are automatically given 5 free credits for uploading documents and there is also a free one month trial which allows you to mail receipts and bills in a postage paid envelope. By answering a few questions, including gender, year born, zip code and job title, you get 10 extra credits. The system automatically created an account for me with an id of user_g3 followed by a string of letters @ shoeboxed.com, something I would not remember. I didn’t recall choosing a password so I couldn’t log in, but I was able to easily reset the password and, once in I was able to change my id to something I could remember. The log in process has been improved since my initial setup. Since I already singed up for the account, I couldn't test if this also improved the initial sign up process but I suspect it has.
Once signed in there is a video to get you started. While very clear and simple it did not address getting setup with QuickBooks. I finally found clear instructions in the knowledgebase but only after a long struggle. Since I started from the app center, I should have been directed to these instructions directly. I actually didn’t realize I needed them until I logged back in to the app center and didn’t see Shoeboxed. It turns out that until you go out to the application and choose the integration, the icon will not show up.
Since I was trying to test this, I uploaded a credit card receipt from Staples, a credit card bill and a bill from Optimum, my phone and internet provider. Documents can be submitted in many ways including email, direct scanning with certain scanners and through mobile devices. Instructions on how to submit documents are easily found and very clear. The Staples receipt was sent in via a photo on my Android and then uploaded through the easily installed mobile app. The bills were submitted via email since I had them as PDFs from the vendor. You are given a specific email address to submit your items. If you will be using it a lot, you would definitely want to store it in your email service as it is not a “name” you will easily remember.
Immediately after submitting, I received an email confirming receipt and letting me know it should be ready within one business day. While the email has a lot of marketing pitch it was nice to get assurance that the document was received. I did my first submission on a Saturday and was pleasantly surprised to get a second email showing that my receipt was processed within a few hours. The email indicating it was ready conveniently includes a link to go out to the processing site.
Once the receipt is processed you can review it and, if needed, change the date, amount and currency. Figuring out the process to get the bill to QuickBooks the first time was hard, the second time was much easier. Bills cannot be sent to QuickBooks but it is easy to change a bill to a receipt. This works for the Optimum bill, but I would not use this for something with lots of line items like a credit card bill. The system uses defaults which did not default to the QuickBooks categories. You can setup rules so that a specific receipt is categorized the way you want but the value depends on whether you will be submitting receipts from the same place regularly. When you set a rule, it will offer to reclassify existing receipts, a nice touch. You can export one receipt, multiple or all and it will omit those previously sent. The screen to assign / confirm the accounts appears. It is not obvious that you have to fill in the debit and credit box before you can export. There is no drop down arrow in the box, but once you start typing they do look up. In my case, the expense debit came in automatically from the prior categorization, but I could not find a way to default the credit side. You are also supposed to be able to hide categories in the category list, but I couldn’t find how to do this.
Once exported you need to make sure Intuit Synch Manager runs to get the data into QuickBooks. What comes over is a very clean journal entry.
I did not test the mail in capability but overall I found that generally I can enter the transactions into QuickBooks myself more quickly than using Shoeboxed. What Shoeboxed does do, is give me stored receipts but I am not sure this is the best tool. For someone who travels a great deal and wants to get their receipts uploaded from the road I can see value in this application. For a person or firm with lots of receipts from the same places this would save time in data entry. However, I think there are a number of limitations that must be considered and improvements needed before I can give this a top rating.
The chief limitations are:
- Items get a single credit / debit. If something is for multiple expenses you can’t account for this until it gets to QuickBooks.
- Sending over a journal entry which has inherent limitations, including the fact that you can’t use items. For some this doesn’t matter but if job costing is important, that can’t be done until in QuickBooks.
- Classes and/or billable customer information cannot be entered until go to QuickBooks
Areas for Improvement:
- Clear link to QuickBooks start up instructions
- Ability to set default debit and credit for system use
- Ability to remove “system accounts” if using QuickBooks
- Ability to tie receipts to customers for billing purposes
March 8, 2012
Time Saving Service
Entering receipts into QuickBooks can be overwhelming at first, but once you get the hang of it, you realize it’s a very simple process. However, as simple as it may be it is very time consuming. If you’re someone who values your time, then I highly recommend this service. And it’s much cheaper for Shoeboxed to do the data entry then hiring a bookkeeper.
June 3, 2014
Couple questions for current users..
When checking it out, I clicked on support to ask a couple questions and it went to a Not Found page. Tried calling and it said it was outside their time zone, it was 2:30 Alaska time, so assume they are on east coast, then went to leave message and it said they could not accept any messages, which must mean the box is full... scary. I manage vacation rentals and need the option of assigning some purchases to "reimbursable" account, although the next time, the same vendor may be for office supplies. Any suggestions welcome
May 12, 2014
That Envelope is Really Magical!
Intuit & Shoeboxed-No More Bankers Box for my receipts! I used to use a Bankers Box, as you can see, up to the time I discovered Shoeboxed through QuickBooks Online Edition. In fact, I kept all my receipts and tax filings for the past years until Taxes 2013 in Bankers Box(es). Not anymore! My 2014 tax filing will be, "Oh so painless!!!" Thanks, Shoeboxed!
April 26, 2014
Wish I would have found this sooner!
Wish I would have found this little app and long long time ago. Really simple to use an incredible time saver. I would recommend this to anyone running a small business.
April 25, 2014
We just started using shoeboxed and so far it has been user-friendly and a great addition to our practice!
April 23, 2014
Great way to save time and eliminate paper waste
This app has saved me an enormous amount of time. It is infinitely easier to send in my receipts than to scan them in myself.
April 23, 2014
Very easy to use. Very easy to understand. Highly recommend.
April 22, 2014