ReceiptsReceipts are a necessary evil: you have to have them to track expenses, calculate tax deductions, and manage your finances. Despite the fact that we need organized receipts, however, most of us resort to the shoe-box method: throw all the receipts in one box and toss it in the closet. It’s not that we don’t know that we need receipts — it’s just that it can take a lot of time to sort and record all those slips of paper. There is a way to get it done without going crazy, though: outsource it. One website, in particular, makes it easy to let someone else handle sorting your receipts. Shoeboxed will scan and categorize every receipt you can send them with no worries.

Shoeboxed’s solution to the receipt-sorting problem is simple: you place your receipts in an envelope, mail it off to Shoeboxed, and find all your receipts scanned and categorized online. Shoeboxed provides secure storage of your information online, and makes it a matter of clicking a button to export your data to Excel, Quicken, CSV, and PDF. And adding those receipts sitting in your email is as simple as forwarding them to a special Shoeboxed email address.

Exactly what you get with Shoeboxed depends on the plan you pay for: there are four plans, ranging from free to $49.95 a month. With the three fee-based  plans, you do get a discount if you pay annually.

  • DIY/Free: With this plan, Shoeboxed does not actually scan your receipts for you. You simply get access to their organization system, in order to enter your own receipts in by hand.
  • Lite/$9.95 per month: This plan is designed for low-volume users — you can mail Shoeboxed 50 receipts a month to scan for you. Your receipts are shredded and recycled. You can also upload an unlimited number of receipts yourself.
  • Classic/$19.95 per month: With this plan, you can send in 150 receipts each month. Your receipts will be mailed back to you.
  • Business/$49.95 per month: This plan is intended for heavy users, such as businesses. Shoeboxed will scan 500 receipts for you each month and will back up your data to a CD each quarter.

While having your receipts scanned is great, the service wouldn’t be helpful without a way to interact with your information. Not only does Shoeboxed provide you with a simple scan of your receipts, but it also extracts the store name, purchase amount, and date. Shoeboxed also offers a dashboard that allows you to look at your receipts, categorize them yourself, make notes, and analyze your expenses. You can see which stores you spend money at most often, check the categories that you regularly spend money in and generally get a good idea of where your money is going. Furthermore, Shoeboxed can learn: if you add a specific categorization to a store, Shoeboxed will automatically associate that category with that store in the future.

In addition to Shoeboxed’s receipt scanning service, the company will also scan business cards and import them into your address book of choice (Gmail, Outlook, Address Book, Salesforce, and more).

Image credit: belterz / iStockphoto

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