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Best Tools to Automate Accounts Payable for Small Businesses

Best Tools to Automate Accounts Payable for Small Businesses


Managing accounts payable is a critical process for any small business. Accounts payable refers to money owed by a company to its suppliers and vendors for goods or services purchased on credit. It's essentially the opposite of accounts receivable, which is money owed to a company by its customers.

Efficient accounts payable management is vital for small businesses for several reasons. First, it ensures suppliers and vendors are paid accurately and on time, which helps maintain good relationships with these partners. Second, it provides visibility into cash flow needs and upcoming payments. Third, it enables taking advantage of early payment discounts from suppliers. Finally, good accounts payable practices minimize late fees and interest charges.

For small businesses still managing accounts payable manually using spreadsheets, paper invoices, and checks, the process can be extremely cumbersome. Thankfully, automated accounts payable software provides a better way. This post will explore the key benefits of accounts payable automation and why LedgerBox stands out as the top choice for small businesses today.

Challenges of Manual Accounts Payable

Manually managing accounts payable is incredibly time-consuming and error-prone. When doing accounts payable by hand, employees have to physically collect invoices, match them to purchase orders, get approvals, enter data into the accounting system, and finally cut checks. This tedious process often results in lost invoices, duplicate payments, and late fees. Additionally, the calculations are done manually, leading to frequent errors that can be hard to catch. Trying to manage accounts payable through spreadsheets also becomes chaotic as your business grows. Overall, manual accounts payable drains productivity and creates financial risks.

Benefits of Automated Accounts Payable Software

Automating accounts payable provides numerous benefits for small businesses compared to manual processes. It saves time, reduces errors, and enables better reporting and analytics.

Saves Time

Manual accounts payable tasks like data entry of invoices and approvals are hugely time consuming. Automated software drastically reduces the time spent on these repetitive processes through data extraction and workflow automation. Staff no longer have to manually enter invoice details or chase down approvals. This frees them up to focus on more strategic tasks.

Reduces Errors

Doing accounts payable manually leaves a lot of room for human error in data entry and calculations. Automated software minimizes errors by extracting data directly from invoices and handling computations automatically. It also reduces missed invoices and duplicate payments by keeping all data organized in one place.

Better Reporting

With manual processes, compiling reports and analytics on accounts payable can be extremely difficult and time consuming. Automated software enables easy generation of reports and dashboards for realtime visibility and insights. Things like aging summaries, spend analytics, and payment tracking are readily available.

Must-Have Features

When evaluating accounts payable software, there are a few key features businesses should look for:

Seamless Invoicing

The software should make it easy to capture invoices from suppliers in a variety of formats, whether paper, email, EDI, or other digital channels. It should allow you to quickly extract key data from invoices and integrate it into your system.

Easy Approvals

A good solution will have approval workflows to match your business needs. It should let you set up rules for different types of invoices and expenses. Approvers can review invoices online or via mobile and approve with a single click.

Robust Reporting

You'll want reporting capabilities to gain insights into your payables. Look for dashboards and reports on aging invoices, payments, vendor spend, and more. There should also be audit trails showing the complete history of invoices.


Your payables system should integrate with accounting software, bank accounts, and other business systems. APIs enable connecting the payables platform with other tools you rely on.

Why LedgerBox is the Top Choice

LedgerBox stands out as the top accounts payable automation software for small businesses due to its robust feature set that streamlines and simplifies the entire invoice and payment process.

With LedgerBox, small businesses can easily capture invoices from suppliers through email, upload, or even direct ERP integration. The intelligent OCR technology extracts all the key details from invoices automatically without any need for manual data entry.

Once invoices are in the system, the software makes it simple to code invoices to the right categories and projects, route them to approvers, and pay suppliers. LedgerBox offers easy approvals through its mobile app, and flexible payment options including ACH, check, or wire.

One of the biggest advantages of LedgerBox is the real-time reporting and analytics. Businesses get instant insights into spending across suppliers, categories, projects, and more. The reports and dashboards provide visibility to make smarter financial decisions.

LedgerBox also integrates seamlessly with popular small business accounting software like QuickBooks Online and Xero. This eliminates duplicate data entry and keeps the books up-to-date automatically.

With its end-to-end automation, mobile access, robust reporting, and accounting integrations, LedgerBox offers the complete accounts payable solution small businesses need in an easy-to-use platform.

Seamless Invoicing

LedgerBox makes invoicing incredibly easy for small businesses. You can create professional invoices in just a few clicks right from the LedgerBox dashboard. Simply add your company details, client information, itemized costs and any other billing information - LedgerBox will populate a polished invoice you can download or email directly to your client.

The software supports recurring invoices for regular billing as well as one-time invoices. You can even configure different payment terms for each client depending on their preferences. Once an invoice is sent, LedgerBox tracks payments and sends automatic reminders when invoices are due to ensure you get paid on time.

LedgerBox integrates with accounting software like QuickBooks to sync invoice data. This eliminates double entry and keeps everything reconciled in one place. Overall, LedgerBox takes the hassle out of invoicing so you can get paid faster. The intuitive interface makes billing painless even for non-accounting staff. LedgerBox ensures your invoices look professional and make a great impression on your clients.

Easy Approvals

LedgerBox offers flexible approval workflows to streamline your accounts payable process. You can set up rules and workflows tailored to your business needs. For example, you may want purchases under a certain amount to be automatically approved, while larger purchases go through a 2-step approval chain.

With LedgerBox, you can:

  • Create unlimited approval rules and workflows based on things like purchase amount, vendor, expense category, department, etc.

  • Set up sequential approval chains that require sign-off from multiple approvers.

  • Configure different approval chains for different types of purchases or departments.

  • Automatically approve low risk transactions under a set dollar amount.

  • Require General Manager approval for purchases over $10,000.

  • Route high priority purchases to fast-track approvers.

  • View real-time status of all pending approvals.

  • Email reminders and notifications to keep approvals moving.

The flexible approval workflows ensure you have the right level of oversight on all your AP spend. Transactions are approved quickly to avoid late fees, while still enforcing financial controls. LedgerBox gives you the ability to fine tune approvals to match your unique business needs.

Robust Reporting

LedgerBox offers some of the most robust reporting and analytics features of any accounts payable software. The dashboard provides real-time visibility into payables with graphical summaries and metrics on spending, payments, invoices, and more.

With just a few clicks, users can generate detailed reports on payables aging, payment history, vendor spend, invoice status, and other key data. Reports can be customized, saved, and scheduled for automatic delivery to stakeholders.

Advanced filtering, segmentation, and drill-down capabilities allow for deep analysis of payables data from any dimension. LedgerBox makes it easy to spot spending patterns, find savings opportunities, and gain actionable insights.

The software also includes audit trail tracking and analytics to monitor processes and compliance. Overall, LedgerBox equips finance teams with the reporting tools needed to optimize accounts payable efficiency and strategy. The depth of data available combined with intuitive and interactive visualizations make LedgerBox a leader in accounts payable reporting.

Integrations (coming soon)

LedgerBox integrates seamlessly with an array of third-party tools to streamline your accounts payable workflow. Some key integrations include:

  • Accounting Software: Integrate with QuickBooks Online, Xero, Sage Intacct and more to sync invoice and payment data between LedgerBox and your accounting platform. Avoid duplicate data entry and ensure your books are always up to date.

  • ERP Systems: Connect LedgerBox to ERPs like NetSuite, SAP, Microsoft Dynamics to bring accounts payable data into your broader business management ecosystem.

  • Bank Feeds: Automatically import bank transactions from thousands of financial institutions to match payments and receipts to invoices in LedgerBox.

  • Bidirectional syncing eliminates duplicative work between LedgerBox and Maintain one central workflow for accounts payable.

  • Payment Gateways: Integrate payment processing via Stripe, Braintree and others into your LedgerBox workflow for easy online invoice payments.

  • eInvoicing Networks: Connect to networks like Tungsten Network to receive supplier invoices electronically directly within LedgerBox. Go paperless.

  • CRM: Bring customer and vendor contacts from Salesforce, HubSpot and other CRMs into LedgerBox for a unified platform.

With robust integrations, LedgerBox connects the dots across your business systems for true accounts payable automation.


LedgerBox is the clear top choice for small business accounts payable software. It simplifies and automates the entire invoice and payment process through features like:

  • Seamless electronic invoicing to eliminate paper and manual data entry
  • Easy approval workflows to streamline invoice reviews and approvals
  • Powerful reporting to gain insights into spend and liabilities
  • Integrations with accounting software for seamless syncing

By leveraging LedgerBox, small businesses can significantly reduce time spent on accounts payable while gaining transparency and control. The software delivers everything a small business needs to optimize AP workflows. The easy setup, intuitive interface, robust features, and affordable pricing make LedgerBox the premier solution.

Switching to LedgerBox can transform accounts payable from a tedious chore to an efficient automated process. Small businesses no longer need to rely on spreadsheets, paper invoices, and manual processes to manage payables. With LedgerBox, they gain an automated solution purpose-built for small business needs.

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