Getting paid is the single most important thing that happens for a freelancer. If you didn’t want to be paid, you wouldn’t be a freelancer! To manage their finances, many freelancers use subscription-based web apps like Freshbooks or Harvest. This may be changing fairly soon, though. WordPress already offers a few invoicing solutions, the most notable of which is WP-Invoice.
Even with these options, however, WordPress lacks a killer invoicing app… for now.
InvoicePro, slated for a Fall 2009 release, is an open source theme for WordPress currently being developed by John Kolbert. The best part about InvoicePro, in my opinion, is that almost everything will be done on the frontend without having to use the WordPress admin. This was my problem with many of the other options I’ve reviewed in this series and I’m glad to see one project really making an easy-to-use interface a priority.
What will InvoicePro do?
InvoicePro will be able to take care of the things you are using Freshbooks or Harvest for. John Kolbert has published a list of planned features for InvoicePro. For a freelancer, these features include:
- Track client contact info
- Create estimates
- Receive notification of client approval of estimates
- Send invoices
- Allow client viewing of invoices/estimates through encrypted link or force registration
- Send and receive comments to/from clients directly on the estimate page
- Collect payments via PayPal
- View historical data (and save to PDF)
and for your clients:
- View estimates and invoices quickly by using an encrypted link
- Returning clients can view work history (if registered)
- Save invoices directly as PDFs
- Approve estimates
- Pay invoices directly via PayPal
- Leave comments on projects
WPHire.com – The Premium, Hosted InvoicePro Solution
InvoicePro will be totally free and open source. That means anyone who knows how to setup a WordPress blog can download it and use it for themselves. However, John will also be releasing a hosted invoicing solution based on InvoicePro called WPHire which will be specifically marketed as an invoice solution for WordPress developers. It’s expected to cost $5 – $10 per month and will keep users from worrying about maintenance, setup or hosting.
Of everything I’ve covered, this project is by far the one I’m most excited about. The mockup looks very promising and John Kolbert is very capable. As a slave to Freshbooks I can’t wait to try it out for myself.