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Top 10 Cash Flow Apps for UK Small Businesses in 2024

Top 10 Cash Flow Apps for UK Small Businesses in 2024

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Introduction

Cash Flow: The Lifeblood of UK Small Businesses

Are you neglecting to use the cash flow app for your small business?

According to the Office of National Statistics, up to 90 per cent of business failures in the UK occur due to cash flow issues. Not only this, but almost half of SMEs in the UK are being paid late, according to research from BACS.

This research also revealed that the average payment debt is estimated to be £32,185. These challenges are particularly difficult for UK small businesses, where delayed payments can devastate operations. Fortunately, technology offers a powerful way to combat these cash flow problems.

The Shocking Reality of Payment Delays

Most entrepreneurs do not know that these technologies can reduce their cash flow worries. Those who do know don’t always have the skills, time, or money to implement them. Nevertheless, without a solution for your cash flow challenges in place, you’ll feel stressed all the time. You’ll spend all your time chasing payments and worrying about when the next invoice will be paid rather than concentrating on how you are going to take your business forward.

Technology: The Key to Cash Flow Control

Spreadsheets offer a basic starting point for tracking cash flow, but their limitations quickly become apparent. Dedicated cash flow apps provide the power and flexibility you need. They offer scenario building, in-depth analytics, and automated features that streamline your financial management. If the world of technology seems daunting, remember that a cash flow app is simply a tool designed to make your life easier.

With the right cash flow app, you’ll transform stress and worry into control and clarity. Imagine having all your financial data at your fingertips – invoices, projections, payment reminders, and customer insights – all accessible through a single dashboard.

Your Cash Flow “Axe”

Abraham Lincoln said, “Give me six hours to chop down a tree, and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe.” What is the equivalent of the axe in your business when it comes to managing cash flow? It’s the tools, the cash flow apps.

What is a cash flow app?

A cash flow app is a software tool specifically designed for UK businesses that helps them track, analyze, and forecast the money flowing in and out of their accounts. This real-time visibility and control over finances enable small businesses to make better decisions and reduce stress.

Essential Features of Cash Flow Apps for UK Businesses

To overcome the unique cash flow challenges faced by UK businesses, the right cash flow app must offer features tailored to the UK market. Here’s what to look for:

Seamless Integration with UK Accounting Software:

  • List the most popular options: Xero, QuickBooks Online, Sage, FreeAgent, etc.
  • Explain: “The best cash flow apps for UK businesses directly connect with your chosen accounting software. This means your income, expenses, and tax data flow automatically, eliminating manual entry and saving you time.”

UK-Compliant Invoicing and Payment Processing:

  • Mention key features: “Look for apps that offer invoice templates designed for UK businesses, including VAT calculations, clear payment terms, and the option to integrate with popular UK payment gateways like Stripe or GoCardless.”

HMRC Reporting Support (if applicable):

  • Cautious wording: “Some cash flow apps may offer features that assist with HMRC reporting, such as VAT calculation summaries or Making Tax Digital (MTD) compatibility. Always consult your accountant to ensure you’re meeting your tax obligations.”

Forecasting with UK-Specific Considerations

  • Explain: “While cash flow forecasting is essential for any business, UK-specific apps may factor in things like VAT payment schedules, typical payment terms for different industries, or seasonal fluctuations that are common in the UK market.”

How Cash Flow Apps Help You Win?

Cash flow apps empower UK small businesses to take control of their finances, gain a competitive edge, and operate with less stress. Here’s how:

  • Data-Driven Decisions: Know your cash position to confidently invest in growth, hire staff, or launch new campaigns.
  • Save Time, Reduce Stress: Automate invoicing, reminders, and reporting, freeing you to focus on your core business, not chasing payments.
  • Stronger Customer Relationships: Professional invoices and insights into payment patterns help you prioritize reliable clients and build positive relationships.

One of the big benefits of going with Agicap was that it means it's just a single point where we can get all the information we need. Before, we had an Excel file that three or four of us could see. Now each business is visible to each company head, and then myself and my boss can see all of it together. So the right people get the right information in real time, instead of once a month at a meeting.

Top 10 Cash Flow Apps for UK Businesses

Managing cash flow effectively is essential for the success of any UK business. These powerful cash flow apps provide tailored features, real-time insights, and automation to help you streamline your financial management and make better decisions.

App Name (Link) Target Audience Features Benefits Cost
Agicap Small & Medium Businesses * Cash flow management Take complete control of your finances with real-time visibility into income, expenses, and cash position. * Free trial
    * Forecasting Make confident decisions about the future based on accurate cash flow predictions. * Paid plans starting from…
    * Scenario Building Prepare for different possibilities by building “what-if” scenarios and testing their impact on your cash flow.  
Cash Flow Tool Small Business * Cash flow management Gain clear visibility into your cash position, simplifying financial tracking for small businesses. * Free plan
    * Projections Plan for the short-term with easy-to-understand projections, helping you avoid cash flow surprises. * Paid plans starting from…
    * Budgeting Create and manage budgets effortlessly to stay on track with your financial goals.  
HighRadius Small Business Owners * Cash flow management Improve cash flow visibility and control for small business owners. * Free trial
    * Forecasting Get insights into future cash flow, enabling proactive decision-making. * Paid plans starting from…
    * Scenario Building Model potential scenarios to prepare for uncertainty and optimize cash flow.  
Pulse Small Business Owners, Entrepreneurs * Scenario Building Quickly build and compare different cash flow scenarios to make the best decisions for your business. * Free trial
    * Forecasting Get a clear view of your future cash flow, enabling proactive planning and growth. * Paid plans starting from…
    * Xero & QuickBooks Integration Seamlessly connect your cash flow data with your accounting software for streamlined management.  
QuickBooks Online Small & Medium Businesses * Cash flow planner Get a quick overview of upcoming income and expenses to stay on top of your short-term financial needs. * Subscription-based
    * Cash flow statements Generate clear cash flow reports to understand your business’s financial health and track performance over time.  
    * Bank reconciliation visibility Easily reconcile your bank transactions within QBO, reducing errors and ensuring your records are accurate.  
Xero Startups & Small Businesses * Short-term cash flow forecasting Make informed decisions about immediate expenses and investments with a clear view of your near-future cash position. * Subscription-based
    * Statement of cash flows Analyze your past cash flow activity to identify trends, optimize spending, and make better financial choices.  
    * Bank reconciliation visibility Simplify record-keeping and ensure accurate bookkeeping by reconciling transactions directly within Xero.  
Dryrun Medium & Large Businesses, CFOs * Consolidated cash flow statements Get a comprehensive view of your finances across multiple entities, ideal for businesses with complex structures. * Contact for pricing
    * Advanced cash flow forecasting Make informed long-term decisions with sophisticated forecasting tools .  
    * In-depth analysis Dive deep into your financial data .  
Fluidly CFOs, Businesses with multiple data platforms * Cash flow data consolidation Gain a unified view of your finances across multiple platforms and data sources. * Contact for pricing
    * Comprehensive forecasting Plan for the future with confidence.  
    * Scenario Building Test the impact of different decisions and market conditions.  
Helm CFOs advising multiple clients * Multi-client cash flow management Streamline financial management for multiple clients. * Free trial
    * Projections Provide clients with clear projections. * Paid plans starting from…
    * Forecasting Create accurate forecasts .  

Your Next Step

Choosing the right cash flow app is crucial for making the most of the technology available to UK businesses. If you need help narrowing down your options, take my short quiz to discover the ideal app for your specific needs.

Which cash flow app is right for you? 

Disclaimer: I’m not affiliated with any specific cash flow app providers. My goal is to help you make an informed decision and find the perfect tool to streamline your financial management.

Take the quiz! Which cash flow app is right for you? I’ll see you on the other side. 

Take the Quiz

Curious to find out how healthy your cash flow is? Take this quiz. In less than 60 secs, it will show your situation and the steps you can take to improve.

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Shishir Khadka, qualified as a chartered certified accountant in 2009. He is the creator of cashflow hub– the world’s most comprehensive cash flow resource online and is one of the UK’s leading cash flow specialist who helps busy business owners and entrepreneurs generate more profit and create consistent positive cash flow without over relying on getting new sales.

He has delivered a masterclass to a global software Zoho’s audience to create consistent cash flow. He has written articles for floatapp– one of the leading cash flow software and has also been featured in the major publications such as Independent. He has been sharing his learning and insights on his youtube channel.

He wrote about his learnings from helping an e-commerce client scaled the business cash flow positive from £500k to £1.6m in four years in “The Three Key Obstacles to Faster Growth: How You Can Overcome Them Using Cloud Accounting.

In his career spanning 18 years as the cash flow specialist, he has helped businesses of all sizes, ranging from £40K to £40M.

Top 10 Cash Flow Apps for UK Small Businesses in 2024

By Shishir Khadka, FCCA.