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Kashoo Accounting Software Video Review: Part 2

Written by Greg Lam

In Part 2 of my Kashoo accounting software review, I’ll discuss banking, payroll, reports, getting data in and out, sales taxes, accountant tools, mobile apps, and support. I’ll also present my overall opinion of Kashoo. If you missed Part 1, you can see it here.

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Banking

With Kashoo, you can import bank transactions by an automatic bank feed or via a file. Kashoo supports all the major formats, including QuickBooks Online (QBO), Quicken Financial Exchange (QFX), Open Financial Exchange (OFX), and comma-separated value (CSV) file formats.

Kashoo’s banking page acts as its reconciliation page. This page is divided in two sections, the top one showing your imported bank statement transactions, the bottom one showing the transactions entered into Kashoo. If a bank statement transaction looks to be the same as one entered into Kashoo already, then the match is highlighted and it’s easy to join them together. Otherwise, you can add any missing transactions from the bank statement into Kashoo.

The big feature missing in Kashoo’s Banking page is the automatic categorization of transactions. Most other online accounting software has categorization rules working to help pre-fill transactions on your behalf so that you only need to accept them. Although a lot of the “rules” in other online accounting software don’t always work so well, it would save a lot of data entry work if Kashoo had some type of categorization rules system, especially one that users could manipulate.

A few other things Kashoo’s Banking page can’t do include match payments to invoices or bills; add split line items (although there’s an easy workaround to this); batch actions; or reorganize any of the data except chronologically (you can’t sort the transactions by name, description, or amount).

One thing I do like is that Kashoo shows the account balance after each transaction. This doesn’t seem like a complicated thing to display, but with many software products, you don’t get this type of data on the banking page.

Overall, I like working with Kashoo’s Banking page, but the lack of categorization rules limits Kashoo’s ability to automate routine data entry. This means that businesses with many transactions a month may find Kashoo requires more data entry work.

Reports

Kashoo has all the basic reports, such as the Profit and Loss and Balance Sheet, but not a lot in the way of performance reports.

The Profit and Loss report does have a tiny bit of control, in that you can filter data by different variables, but otherwise, there’s not much flexibility to the reports. If you want to slice and dice the numbers, you’ll have to export the data to an Excel or CSV file. All reports can be exported to Excel, CSV, HTML, and PDF.

Data Import and Export

Kashoo doesn’t allow much data to be imported, only a trial balance, contacts, and banking transactions. Kashoo does have an API, but it’s not as well documented and supported as other online accounting software, so I doubt the average user would use it to get data into Kashoo.

However, when it comes to getting data out of Kashoo, it’s very easy to do so. Kashoo has a one-click export button for the majority of data. The only piece of data I found missing was the general ledger, which you can easily run a report for and export.

Sales Tax

I like that Kashoo has a dedicated Sales Tax page where you can add taxes, create shortcut codes for modified forms of taxes, and file your taxes. After filing many a tax return through this system, I find it’s not as good as it could be. For example, QuickBooks Online does a better job with its Sales Tax page, as it can track payments made to authorities and it has a form for making adjustments.

Kashoo’s taxes are very flexible in that you can create custom codes, combine taxes, and create multiple sales tax receivable and payable accounts. However, you have to be careful when using the taxes; it has its peculiarities, so you need to set up your accounts properly for everything to work.

Accountant Tools

Kashoo has an accountant program called MVP (Most Valuable Professional), but there are no accountant-specific tools that come with it. However, in comparison to other microbusiness accounting software, there are a lot of basic accountant tools that are built in, such as the Activity Log (audit trail). The software also is quite flexible in how it handles the use of accounts and sales tax.

Mobile Apps

Kashoo has strong iOS apps for the iPad and iPhone. They’re the most full-featured apps out there, in that most of what you can do in the web app, you can do in the mobile app. The most significant missing feature in the mobile app is bank reconciliation. Something that the mobile app does add, though, is the ability to capture images for income and expense transactions. While you can view those images on the web app, you can’t manipulate them or add to them. In addition, there’s no file attachment capability with the web app.

If you’re one of those people who live on your iOS devices, Kashoo’s apps for the iPad and iPhone are attractive options.

Support

What’s a bit unique about Kashoo is that you can reach it by live chat, email, user forum, phone, and social media. Not many companies are available via so many platforms.

There’s a single help site (which is actually a combination of Kashoo’s user forums and help articles). Overall, there’s a lot of good information, but I found not being able to filter the search results by forum discussions and official articles made it more difficult to navigate (I usually prefer to search official articles first when looking for help).

Recommendation

Okay, so what do I think of Kashoo in general? As a data entry tool, it’s probably my favorite web app. The navigation is simple, the forms are easy, and most everything can be accessed in a click or two. The way it’s structured, by allowing the use of any account type in account fields and having a strong set of sales tax options, makes it flexible for a variety of uses. The fact that it doesn’t have a hundred different forms for entering income and expenses is also a big plus.

Out of all the software I’ve reviewed, I think Kashoo is the easiest to pick up and learn, so it would be great for microbusinesses and for those new to accounting software. I also think accountants and bookkeepers will appreciate it, since there’s not a big learning curve. I think given a couple of hours, most accountants and bookkeepers would become proficient with the software.

On the other hand, Kashoo’s simplicity is also what’s negative about it. Kashoo doesn’t have much in the ways of automation, and the fact that it doesn’t have online invoicing and payments is very noticeable, since most online accounting software I review has this capability. There’s no inventory, there’s no ability to add attachments in the web app, and there are no add-ons beyond payroll.

So, I think there’s this tradeoff with Kashoo that largely rests around the number of transactions you need to process. If you only have a few transactions a month or if you have a simple business, Kashoo works out nicely. Once you start getting above 50 transactions a month, other more automated solutions start to become more attractive choices.

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  • Kashoo (microbusiness)
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  • FreshBooks (invoicing)

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About the author

Greg Lam

Greg Lam is a passionate small business guy who loves technology and automation. He holds a BBA from Simon Fraser University, Canada. He's a Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor, Certified Xero Partner, and Kashoo MVP. His business interests are focused on online accounting and how it can be used to streamline and automate a company’s accounting processes. He currently lives in Tokyo, Japan.

Greg operates the Small Biz Doer website, an "Entrepreneur's Guide to Small Biz Bookkeeping." He is the author of Online Accounting Software: Finding the Right Match, published by The Sleeter Group.

Connect with Greg on Twitter, Google Plus, YouTube, LinkedIn, or Facebook.

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