Where do you keep you receipts? In a Ziploc bag? Under your mattress? Wallet? Shoe box? Everywhere? Ok, next question. Do you know how much money you spend on Starbucks or at the gas station every month? How about those really expensive auction pieces? Do you keep track of your receipts?
That last question has two possible responses, and if you’re a business owner, hopefully, you said yes…and, you’ll also know where your receipts are because you keep them in the same place. If not, you’re not alone. Paper is one of the hardest things to control and keep from infiltrating every nook and cranny of your home, office, and car.
My relationship with paper
I love helping clients organize their paper but I hate dealing with my own (did I say hate, because I meant HATE). Yes, I have a system in place (receipt box with labeled tabs + NeatDesk) and yes, it works, but it’s not my favorite thing to do, though the NeatDesk does make it easier for me. This means that when I get busy, I don’t keep up with it the way I should. It also means that I will find some other important and/or urgent thing to focus on, also known as, procrastinating. Yep, even organizers can get afflicted by the big “P.”
My budding relationship with Shoeboxed.com
Enter Shoeboxed.com. First, in the interest of full disclosure, you should know that I am a Shoeboxed.com affiliate. That said, I recently gave Shoeboxed a try. I spoke with my account manager, Justin, who explained the process and then mailed me two envelopes to stuff with 150 pieces of my stuff. He suggested that I put in receipts, a few business cards, and a couple documents, just to mix things up a bit. He also said that once the envelopes were received by Shoeboxed staff, I would get an e-mail, that they would sort through each piece of paper by hand, and then upload them to my account. And, it should all be done within 3-5 business days.
I decided to throw in receipts from multiple years along with some biz cards and a few documents. I threw caution to the wind and decided not to count the number of pieces of paper I put in the envelopes. Still in “brave” mode, I handed them both to my husband and asked him to mail them. Two days later, I realized he mailed them in his car. Ok, so just a little hiccup…they were finally mailed on August 28th.
…and then another hiccup…I broke Shoeboxed! Well, not exactly…things were just taking a little longer than expected and they sent an e-mail to notify me. Then, on September 8th, I got the good news. My docs were uploaded and ready for viewing!
I got a snapshot of my spending based on the 102 pieces of paper I sent in. I could tell at a glance where I spent the most (my car) and how much I spent on my Starbucks habit (a little over $30…not too bad, right?). The nice folks at Shoeboxed also categorized my receipts and docs…and, if I wanted to, I can change the categories, export to Freshbooks, or sync with Outright (if I had a Freshbooks or Outright account). Did you know that you can also import/export your contacts from Evernote?
What I like
- Customer Service. I liked that Shoeboxed got it right even when they didn’t get it right. They told me that I would upload my info with in 5 business days. When that didn’t happen, they sent me an e-mail and nicely asked me to hang tight. Then, they had it ready for me the next day.
- Ease of Use. How hard is it to stuff a couple postage free envelopes with paper and receipts? Not very. In fact, not at all. It’s also easy to navigate their website and find the info I need.
- Green-ness. I know that’s not really a word, but, while they can return your papers/receipts to you (not with the Lite plan), they are happy to shred and recycle them at no extra cost for all price plans.
- Connections. Who doesn’t love it when their new best friend has connections? Shoeboxed has several partnerships that can help you gain even better control of your paper piles and help you to keep track of your dollars and cents. If you’re a small biz owner, you should check out their CRM partners.
What would have made it perfect
I don’t have much to report just yet, though, if I had to pick one thing, it would be that my receipts would have been uploaded in the time frame they specified. Even so, it was awesome – and worth it – to have someone else take care of this with little effort on my part.
Next time, I’ll try out their iPhone app and mobile feature and let you know how I like them. If you’re using Shoeboxed, please weigh in with your two cents.