Update: As of 6/18/19, the Billy app has officially been changed to Sunrise App.
With the change to the name has come a significant pricing alteration: there will be a free-forever tier that includes credit card processing. Priced tiers proceed from $99 to $299 to $499 depending on the number of transactions, and include bookkeeping services. Users will work with a real-life bookkeeper to get their finances in order to help maximize their tax deductions or get ready for small business financing applications.
Other new features of Sunrise App include cash-basis accounting and Paypal payments. It also features a very robust roadmap that includes recurring payments on invoices, budgeting, and automatic categorization.
Accounting is the worst when you’re a solo business owner. Many artists feel like they’re not qualified to do their own accounting (which I completely understand and identify with). On top of that, accounting software is often very confusing, built for accountants and other accounting professionals. Billy aims to make life easier for the small business owner with a bifurcated approach. There are two views, one for the business owner, and one for the professional accountant who is helping you.
(Full disclosure: I’m good friends with the team that runs Billy here in the USA)
Lots has been written about Billy already. Capterra did an extensive review of accounting software options, ranking Billy as #2 in their list. Of the survey of the reviews that we read on Billy, and our own experiments with the software, here’s our thoughts on the software:
Inexpensive. Some accounting software (looking at your Xero) seems inexpensive, but when you want to add new features or perform a lot of reconciliations, costs can add up quickly. Billy’s price is reasonable and easy to understand.
Simple, not Simplistic. Quickbooks has been around forever, and they are a prime example of what software developers call “feature creep.” This is when customers, and other employees, request additional features that only a small number of people use, making the entire program more complex and difficult to use. Billy’s dual-view has many of the complex features that accountants want, but also the simplicity that business owners crave.
Responsive. Billy has been around for a number of years. It’s an established brand in Europe. I know the Billy team in the USA, and they are a crack team of professionals responsive to customer requests.
Lack of Network Effect. Billy’s one down side, which isn’t that big of a deal – many accountants and bookkeepers will ask you to move to their preferred software, which is often confusing and difficult to use if you’re not trained in it. If your preferred bookkeeper or accountant insists on their software, it probably won’t be Billy, since they’re new in the USA, but they are growing quickly.
If you’re looking for easy to use accounting software for your art business, Billy has you in mind. Their product is solid. Lissie, my wife and the person who’s in charge of TAA financial operations looked at it and said it had everything she needed if we were looking to switch. It’s designed specifically for artists and will do what you need.