How do I get started in FreshBooks?

Welcome to FreshBooks! If you're currently running a business or just getting started while pursuing your passion, we're here to help you make accounting painless and easy. FreshBooks requires an internet connection to use and can be accessed on your computer and mobile device with our mobile apps.
While each business has their own needs and utilize different parts of their FreshBooks account, feel free to jump to the relevant section for you, or scroll through:

Sign Up for an Account

Sign up for FreshBooks with a 30 day trial to try out almost all of our features before committing to a plan, or buy now without a trial to take advantage of our discounts. To sign up, use the below steps:
  1. Go to the signup page here
  2. For a login with FreshBooks, enter in an Email
    1. Next, add a Password (minimum of 8 characters or more)
    2. Check off the box to confirm the terms of service and privacy policy
    3. Then select the Try it Free button 
  3. For a login with Apple, select the Sign Up With Apple button
    1. Enter in your Apple ID email and select the arrow button
    2. Then enter in your Apple ID password, then select the arrow button
    3. If prompted, verify with two-factor authentication
    4. Select Continue to proceed with setting up Sign in with Apple
  4. For a login with Google, select the Sign Up With Google button
    1. Enter in your Google email and select Next
    2. Then enter in your Google password, then select Next
    3. Select Allow to authorize FreshBooks to access your Google Account
  5. Verify your account with the verification email 
  6. Once verified, you'll be asked a few questions about your business before you can start exploring your account.

30 Day Trial and Pricing

If you’ve signed up for one of our 30 day trials, your pricing can be viewed anytime in your account with the below steps:
  1. Select your profile picture or initials in the top right corner
  2. Then select Billing and Upgrade.
You can also view pricing here which varies depending on currency and region. Upgrade anytime with these steps, and you won’t be charged until your trial ends.

Set Up Your Account

Explore Your Account

With your new FreshBooks account, you can navigate to different parts of your account as needed with the following:
FreshBooks account on the dashboard section with the top bar menu displayed.
Top Toolbar - Located in the top right corner, this includes:
  • Search - Quickly search for specific things in FreshBooks, or go to specific sections of FreshBooks
  • Notifications - Review your account notifications
  • Help - Browse our help centre articles anytime, or reach out to our support team
  • Account Information - Access login information in your account profile, billing and upgrade, add-ons, refer a friend, and log out options
Main Navigation Menu - Located on the left side, this includes the Business switcher which lets you switch between multiple businesses if needed. You can also access various sections of your account, from Invoices to Expenses to Time Tracking, including your Settings at the very bottom of the navigation menu.

Import your Data

You can choose to start afresh with your new FreshBooks account, or transfer over existing data from any previous software into your account anytime. Review How do I import data into my account? for options on importing with CSV files, or transferring data using a service like Easy Switch.

Access Your Account Settings

Use your account’s settings to adjust any of the following:

Activate Online Payments

Accept credit cards, bank transfers (ACH), and Direct Debit payments on your invoices, Checkout Links, recurring templates, and retainers by setting up with any of our payment gateways:
Learn more about recurring templates and recurring payments, which allow you to automatically charge a client’s saved payment information on a regular basis through a recurring template or retainer. This is ideal for businesses with subscriptions and recurring services.

Features on Specific Plans

Some features in FreshBooks are only available on specific pricing plans:

Accounts Payable

Accounts Payable is available on Premium and Select plans and includes the following:


FreshBooks’s double-entry accounting features are available on Plus, Premium, and Select plans. This includes the following:
  • Accountants - Invite up to 10 accountant team members to help manage your bank rec and financials, as well as run reports
  • Accounting Reports - Including the Balance Sheet report, Cash Flow report, General Ledger report, Journal Entry report, and the Trial Balance report
  • Advanced Accounting - Access to the same accounting features as an accountant, including the ability to manage the chart of accounts structure and create journal entries

Bank Reconciliation

Bank Reconciliation (Bank Rec) allows you or your accountant to match any bank transactions to any FreshBooks Entries so that the cash balance on the Balance Sheet matches the actual bank account balance. Bank rec is an ongoing process with transactions updated automatically through a bank connection, rather than reconciling statement periods. This can be done anytime, or on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis.

Chart of Accounts

The chart of accounts in FreshBooks is organized by the United States industry standard, Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP), and is sorted by Account Type and Account Sub-Type first, with parent accounts and sub accounts underneath.

Other Features

Review each feature’s information below for availability details based on plan and/or region:
  • Project Profitability - Track your projects’ performance to review how profitable they are, including access to these reports: Profitability Summary report, Profitability Details report, and the Team Utilization report
  • Proposals - Create detailed estimates with rich text content and images to showcase the value, as well as request a eSignature before the proposal can be accepted
  • Receipt Scanning - Upload a document for a bill or expense, and have information automatically scanned and extracted for you
  • Recurring Revenue Reports - Review a summary of your recurring revenue from recurring templates and retainers, along with forecasted revenue
  • Retainers - Bill for a fixed amount upfront and track time towards the remaining balance


The below add-ons are available to be purchased in addition to your FreshBooks subscription:
  • Advanced Payments - Also known as virtual terminal, store and proactively charge your clients’ saved credit card information on invoices and recurring templates
  • FreshBooks Payroll powered by Gusto - For US businesses, run payroll for your employees, file payroll taxes automatically, and maintain labor compliance
  • Team Members - Add and invite team members to work with you in FreshBooks under different roles

Useful Resources

With your new FreshBooks account, you can get started with any of these common tasks: