Software Spotlight: QuickBooks OnlineSPONSORED

QuickBooks Online: Our top choice for accounting software with a receipt scanner. Get invoicing, bill pay and inventory tracking. Now 50% off for three months.

  • Full bookkeeping.
  • Multiple ways to upload receipts.
  • Get detailed reporting.
  • Collect and track sales tax.

  • Receipt scanning software helps you digitally organize your expenditures. Many titles even read the information on your receipt automatically, so you don’t have to input data manually. So if you’re struggling to keep track of your receipts and expenditures, there are quite a few affordable solutions.

    We’ve looked into the top-notch choices for all situations to give you well-researched recommendations. For example, business owners on a tight budget might prefer Zoho Expense, which offers a free plan. But businesses that need a little extra may find that Shoeboxed and QuickBooks Online are better suited for their particular needs.

    So let’s get into some of the best receipt scanning software of the year.

    Top receipt scanner apps: Comparison table

    Each software title offers something a little different. Let’s break down the features of each competitor.

    Starting priceFree trialAutomatic receipt scanningBeginner-friendly
    Zoho Expense$0/mo. (3 users max)14 daysYesYesTry Zoho
    FreshBooks$19/mo.30 daysYesYesTry FreshBooks
    Wave Accounting$0/mo.N/AYes (not included with free plan)YesTry Wave
    Expensify$0/mo.N/AYes, limited to 25 scans/mo. for freeYesTry Expensify
    ShoeBoxed$29/mo30 daysYes, plan limits range from 25 to 300 scans/mo.YesTry ShoeBoxed
    QuickBooks Online$30/mo.30 daysYesYesTry QuickBooks

    Top receipt scanner apps

    Zoho Expense: Best overall receipt scanning software

    The Zoho Expense logo.
    Image: Zoho Expense

    Zoho Expense is a boon for business owners seeking a straightforward yet feature-rich solution. The cloud-based receipt scanning software solution delivers all the hallmark features, like automatic receipt scanning, richly detailed reports and integrations with popular accounting software packages. The platform also boasts a free plan that supports up to three users.

    Thanks to its beginner-friendly interface and affordability, the platform is our top pick. Any business owner can quickly grasp the solution without breaking the bank. Plus, the title plugs in seamlessly with other Zoho solutions. This integration transforms the receipt scanning software into a broader powerhouse of value.


    Zoho Expense keeps it simple when it comes to pricing. Here are the software’s four plans:

    • Free: $0 per user per month. Capped at three users and 20 receipt autoscans.
    • Standard: $6 per user per month (billed annually). Includes unlimited users, more detailed reports and 20 receipt autoscans.
    • Premium: $9 per user per month (billed annually). Advanced perks for growing business.
    • Custom: Custom pricing only. Available for businesses with 100+ users.


    • Cloud-based access.
    • Mobile app.
    • Automatic receipt scanning.
    • Advanced reporting.
    • Seamless integration with other Zoho software.
    • Free for up to three users.


    • Beginner-friendly.
    • Scalable and connected to the broader Zoho ecosystem.
    • Complete, feature-rich solution.
    • Highly affordable.


    • Automatic receipt scanning is limited.
    • Support open only five days per week.

    Learn more in our Zoho Expense review.

    FreshBooks: Best for freelancers

    The FreshBooks logo.
    Image: FreshBooks

    FreshBooks is another cloud-based receipt-scanning software solution that offers a wide array of features. But receipts are only a tiny part of the equation. The platform is primarily built for accounting, invoicing and time-tracking. So, if you need broader financial management power, this title delivers.

    The platform is ideal for freelancers for several reasons. First, its time-tracking perk makes billing clients per hour a snap. Plus, you can accept credit card payments from within the software. And FreshBooks supports automatic invoices, which is ideal for retainer fees and those with predictable businesses.


    • Time-tracking.
    • Mileage calculations.
    • Integrations with payment processors.
    • Automated invoices.


    • Lots of freelancer-specific perks.
    • Affordable for small teams.
    • Simple and straightforward.


    • Not ideal for larger or growing businesses.
    • Limited number of clients on some plans.

    Learn more in our FreshBooks review.

    Wave Accounting: Best cheap receipt scanner

    The Wave logo.
    Image: Wave

    Wave Accounting is a small-business accounting software solution with one free plan and one paid plan. The product is a good option for small businesses on a tight budget. Although the free plan doesn’t include unlimited receipt scanning, free plan users can add it for a fee of $11 per month or $96 per year. (Receipt scanning comes free with Wave Pro, which costs $16 per month or $170 per year.)

    Wave’s receipt scanning plan is particularly appealing because you can scan an unlimited amount of receipts for a low cost. Other titles, like Zoho Expense, limit this perk on some plans. So, if you handle a great deal of invoices and receipts, this pick is your perfect match.

    The platform is also wonderful because you can use Wave’s other solutions. This menu includes payroll, accounting and invoicing software. You can even tap into certified accountants for live support — for a fee.


    • Cloud-based access.
    • Unlimited receipt scanning.
    • Access to other Wave titles.
    • Accountants available for support.


    • Scalable to other needs, like payroll.
    • Beautiful interface.
    • Beginner-friendly.
    • Free.


    • Expensive premium features.
    • Sales pitches for other Wave solutions.

    Learn more in our Wave Accounting review.

    Expensify: Best for beginners

    The Expensify logo.
    Image: Expensify

    Expensify is a cloud-based receipt scanning software solution designed for businesses of all sizes. The platform is especially appealing to beginners. There is no jargon, and the platform is beautifully straightforward. Anyone, regardless of technical background, can quickly get up and running.

    The software also makes it easy for novices to pull data rapidly. You can seamlessly integrate with an enormous amount of apps, including Uber, Lyft and even travel providers like Delta and Kayak. These connections, coupled with automatic receipt scanning, mean you don’t have to input expenses manually.


    • Lots of handy integrations.
    • Beautiful user interface.
    • Jargon-free.
    • Many free options.


    • Ideal for beginners.
    • Lots of free perks.
    • Quick setup.


    • Lacks power.
    • Not suitable for larger businesses.
    • Limited receipt scans.

    Shoeboxed: Best physical receipt organizer

    Logo for Shoeboxed.
    Image: Shoeboxed

    Like others, Shoeboxed is a cloud-based receipt-scanning software solution for small businesses and freelancers. However, the platform is unique because you can mail in paper receipts. The company then scans these documents for you and inputs the data to your account. This full-service process is affectionately called “Magic Envelope.”

    This perk can save you boatloads of time and effort if you deal with vast amounts of traditional paper. It’s also top-notch if you’re switching from an analog paper trail to a digital existence.

    Beyond this unique benefit, Shoeboxed is a great solution for beginners. It boasts a beautiful user interface with a cute surfing cat as its mascot. Plus, you get other time-saving perks like automated receipt scanning and auto-filled data.


    • Full-service paper receipt scanning.
    • Several plans to choose from.
    • Unlimited cloud storage.
    • QuickBooks integration.


    • Beginner-friendly.
    • Makes handling paper receipts easy.
    • Beautiful interface.


    • Pricey.
    • Limits on Magic Envelopes can hinder value.

    QuickBooks Online: Best for growing and larger businesses

    The QuickBooks Online logo.
    Image: Intuit

    QuickBooks Online from Intuit is a popular accounting software solution with a receipt-scanning feature. The platform can feel somewhat intimidating for beginners. But this challenge is a result of the title’s sheer power.

    As one of the most popular titles in the accounting world, nearly every financial management need is solved with QuickBooks. You can input receipts at first. But eventually, you can file your taxes, connect to certified accountants and even apply for a loan with the software. Indeed, the platform serves your business from cradle to grave, no matter the size.


    • Extremely powerful.
    • Connects to other Intuit software.
    • Scalable for any size business.
    • Automatic receipt scanning included.


    • Covers every accounting need.
    • Integrates with lots of software.
    • Supports any size business.


    • Less beginner-friendly than others.
    • Expensive.
    • Requires some accounting knowledge.

    Learn more with our QuickBooks Online review.

    Key features of receipt scanning software

    When choosing receipt scanning software, there are a few key features to consider.

    Cloud-based vs. desktop

    Cloud-based receipt scanning software is more convenient and easier to use. It can be accessed from anywhere with an internet connection. On the other hand, desktop-based titles only work on one device. This local installation gives you more control over your data’s security. Plus, you can still use it without an internet connection, such as when you’re traveling. But it’s also less convenient and makes it harder to share with others.

    Mobile app

    Many software solutions boast top-notch mobile apps that allow you to input receipts on the go. This portability is especially useful for business owners and employees who travel frequently.

    Automatic receipt scanning

    This fancy concept uses optical character recognition (OCR) technology to automatically extract key information from receipts, such as the amount spent, date and vendor. This technology saves you time and effort compared to entering this information by hand.

    Expense categorization

    This perk automatically sorts your receipts into different categories, such as travel, meals and entertainment, to better track your spending and identify areas where you can save money.

    Expense reporting

    Expense reporting is a feature that allows you to generate expense reports that can be submitted to your manager or accountant. This can save you time and effort as you don’t have to manually compile your expense reports each month.

    Integration with accounting software

    Many receipt scanning software solutions link up with popular accounting software packages, like QuickBooks Online and Xero. These third-party integrations automatically sync your data across both platforms. As a result, you only have to input receipts once, and everything is updated instantly, saving you plenty of time and effort.


    We carefully analyzed each platform’s features and used some titles firsthand. We also studied pricing, customer reviews and any limitations. Furthermore, we paid close attention to the receipt scanning capabilities of each platform and how they connect to other accounting software titles.

    How do I choose the best receipt scanner for my business?

    Your ideal receipt scanning software for small businesses depends on several factors. First, consider how many items you’ll scan per year. Many platforms limit the number of scans you get per month or annually. So, if you have lots of stuff to input, consider a title that delivers unlimited receipt scans, like Wave Accounting.

    Second, you’ll want to consider your budget and projected growth. If you’re a smaller entity on a tight budget, free options are available. Zoho Expense is one contender. But there are others that boast lots of perks without a steep price tag.

    Finally, decide how much value you place on automatic receipt scanning. Many titles use optical character recognition (OCR) to decipher your receipts’ data automatically. Then, that information is prepopulated for you, saving you time and hassle. But this hands-free technology is sometimes limited per month unless you pay more. So, if this function appeals to you strongly, look for a software title that includes a generous amount of OCR-powered scans.

    Read Next: Top Apps for Tracking Business Expenses

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    Stay up to date on the latest in technology with Daily Tech Insider. We bring you news on industry-leading companies, products, and people, as well as highlighted articles, downloads, and top resources. You’ll receive primers on hot tech topics that will help you stay ahead of the game. Delivered Weekdays