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Category: RomanCart
Forum Name: New Features
Forum Description: Read about new RomanCart features here
Printed Date: 24 February 2024 at 6:43am

Topic: Accounting
Posted By: Support
Subject: Accounting
Date Posted: 04 October 2011 at 2:21pm

If RomanCart had the ability for you to enter your outgoings and to create invoices, profit and loss reports, generation of VAT returns - what else would you need it to do to completely replace your current accounting packages?

Many Thanks

Posted By: Dave P
Date Posted: 04 October 2011 at 4:39pm
Sorry Support,

I can't find the smiley for 'bangs head against wall'.

Rather than getting into accounting, how about fixing the things which don't work or enhancements which people have been asking for for years e.g. removing the restrictive limit of 50 products on the product manager import. There are loads of other examples which would make the cart better and easier to use for what a shoping cart should have as it's primary purpose i.e. selling products and managing stock.

Leave accounting alone, or develop an interface to the most popular accounting pachages such as Sage if you must do something.

Puts soap box away, gets on with holiday in the sun :-)


Dave P. - Gifts for all at HoneyPotGifts

Posted By: Silent_Explorer
Date Posted: 04 October 2011 at 5:39pm
Dave P.,

Don't be such a grumpy old man!, it sounds like you need that holiday.


I don't currently use any form of accounting software other than manual entry of figures into good old MS Excel and when I saw this thread I was looking forward to seeing some positive suggestions that would lead on to the introduction of some useful new accounting features for RomanCart and raise the status of your system from 'excellent' to 'outstanding' so please pursue this endeavour despite Dave P's feelings.

Regretfully I'm not able give give much input on this subject myself as I'm not familiar with what is expected from an accounts package but hopefully other RC users will post some suggestions

Best Regards

Nick G.

A very happy RC user

------------- - The Garage Door Spares & Automation Specialists - open your garage door at the press of a button !

Posted By: raineshoe
Date Posted: 04 October 2011 at 5:48pm
Sorry Dave, but I would love accounting as at the moment I'm am duplicating a lot of effort to use my accounts alongside Romancart.

I use Quickbooks Pro so would like similar functionality to that - this link gives some of things it can do -

Also, would like something that is forgiving if you make a mistake!

You can also get lots of reports on the position of your finances from stock, suppliers, journal entries, profit and loss etc.

Can't think of more at the moment, but look at the link for Quickbooks and it shows what's available.

Posted By: tester1
Date Posted: 04 October 2011 at 8:57pm
Sounds like you're going to get 2 very different points of view on this issue. This post is likely to be a bit long too - sorry about that.

Our accounting requirements are quite complex.

We need:

1. Sales order processing - if part of a customer's order is not in stock, it records the rest of the order as a normal invoice and the remainder (out-of-stock products) as an order. That way, we can always get a get a report at any point in time of what orders/products are on back-order.

2. Purchase order processing - similar concept but from a supplier's point of view. Everything that we order may not be in stock at the suppliers or they may have inadequate stock. POP allows you to see what is on back-order with the supplier(s).

3. We sell to EU business customers so we need the EU Sales List feature for HRMC reporting requirements.

4. We buy and sell in 3 different currencies so we need a foreign currency feature. Currency gains/losses etc implications ...

5. We hold stock in multiple warehouses.

6. Although we don't use it, a payroll processing functionality (which, needless to say, requires updating each year to comply with changing tax rates and changing legislation), this is surely a must.

We currently use MYOB Accounting Plus. If you're not familiar with MYOB, it's an Australian package localised for the UK market. MYOB was bought out by Mamut (Scandinavian company) a couple of years ago. To cut a long story short, Mamut is making the MYOB software inoperable after 31st Dec 2011. They want customers to migrate over to their own crappy piece of software. Needless to say, many MYOB owners are not happy to say the least. Imagine buying a piece of software and then finding out 5 years later that it simply won't run anymore on ANY piece of hardware with ANY operating system!

I've looked at many reasonably priced alternatives, well-known and not-so-well-known. The well-knowns are the likes of Quickbooks Permier (around 250 exc VAT) and Sage 50 (around 750 exc VAT) and even cloud-based accounting packages. None of them - bar one - have all the features we need. Multi-location stock tracking is where most of them fall down flat. Sage 200 has this functionality but the starting price is 3500. Bright Pearl, a cloud-based piece of software, has this functionality and costs 69 a month (inc VAT? exc VAT? not sure). If I remember correctly, MYOB cost us around 200. Looking back on this, it was a bargain. MYOB does all we need and does it very very well. On top of that, it's fast and simple to use. All of the latest pieces of software have such poor and confusing interfaces - and I'm a qualified accountant!

Of all the cloud-based accounting software, Bright Pearl was certainly the best for our needs. It does have multi-location stock tracking. It even has an ecommerce module (79 pcm extra) which integrates with the rest of the accounting functions.

Support, no doubt this is what you are aiming for. I have to admit, I'd jump at the opportunity of better integration between our carts and the accounting software. It will certainly cut-down on work. But it simply doesn't seem to be possible at the moment.

Bright Pearl had $1.5m venture capital funding last year and another $5m this year. The article from last year about their $1.5m funding mentioned that they wanted to expand to a team of 100 staff "within a few months". Are these guys who you want to go up against?

I love RC. I love the simple check-out process. I love the fact that it's not database and template driven so that each page on our web site, if need be, can be tailored to show exactly how we want it. No doubt the die-hard RC fans stick with RC just for the same reasons.

So, I whole-heartedly agree with Dave P and want to echo his comments. Please please fix all the problems first before you start looking at diversifying from your core business. And, like Dave said, consider writing export modules for the popular accounting packages.

Posted By: Keith
Date Posted: 04 October 2011 at 11:25pm
Hi Tester1
Have you had a look at this accounting package which I think seems to do all that you are looking for including multi currency etc.
It would be the Bright Star version.
I have been using it for many years now but I don't use all the facilities.

Regards, Keith

Posted By: tester1
Date Posted: 05 October 2011 at 12:56am
Thanks Keith. Had never heard of that one so took a quick look. The web site alone put me off it. Looks to me like a small outfit. Who works from a place called Pratts Bottom?

I'm not ungrateful but I think I'll pass on this one. First impressions do count.

Posted By: Amber
Date Posted: 05 October 2011 at 7:27am
Personally, I think any new developments should come second after sorting out the requests us members have made over the years to no avail. I could probably name more than a dozen tweaks, additions and improvements that have constantly been asked for on the forums, and I would like to see these worked on before moving on to whole new concepts.


Graham - Amber Chiropody Supplies

Posted By: liz15a
Date Posted: 05 October 2011 at 7:53am

I too am in the 'please fix everything else first' category.

I've sent multiple support tickets and never even had a proper response never mind got them looked at/fixed!

The problem is bug fixes dont generate new revenue/customers. New functionality does.....(yes I am cynical!)

Cheers, Liz

Posted By: Red
Date Posted: 05 October 2011 at 8:12am
I am with you partly on that Liz - existing problems raised do need sorting prior to working on new features or at least given priority but I do like the sound of the quotes and invoices that are being developed.

Posted By: raineshoe
Date Posted: 05 October 2011 at 1:40pm
Although we'd all love existing stuff to be improved, if Romancart don't move forward and increase their share of the market with additional features like accounts they won't stand out from the crowd of other carts. I for one find this cart one of the best on the market for what it offers vs price and whatever cart you use it will never be perfect and suit everyone. You just can't produce anything that suits all. Having said that I nearly did walk a while back when things weren't quite right, but happier with things are they are now. Lets face it if it doesn't suit you anymore for whatever reason you can always vote with your feet and sign up elsewhere.

Bear in mind also, as people come to Romancart there are also a certain amount that will leave either because they've given up, or want a change etc. You need repeat customers, but also have to increase customers at the incoming end to replace those that drop off. Other carts are changing what they do all the time and a colleague already uses a system that links into her accounts, so other carts are clearly already leaving Romancart behind.

Like the rest of us Romancart is a business and has to make money and they will do what they have to to stay ahead of the game whether we like it or not.

Personally, yes there are things I'd like to see changed, especially as I'm having to fudge a page on my web site to get the cart to do what I need, but its minor in the scheme of things. I'm all for the accounts as I think this will make it a very powerful cart and for me would reduce duplicated effort. I just hope when it arrives it lives up to everything I have now.

Posted By: GX160Parts
Date Posted: 06 October 2011 at 6:26pm
i think this is a great addittion.

When do you think you will be making this live?

The addition of being able to produce Purchase Orders would be great especially from the product manager. Type the name and address of your supplier (or better yet get these from a drop down menu). Enter the qty you require on the product manager and then print off the form.

You could have a column on the product manager for Stock ordered and also a column for quantity delivered. If you order say 100 of an item and 50 arrive in the first shipment you could add 50 into the qty received column hit enter and this would automatically add 50 to your current stock level and also show you at a glance that 50 are still to be delivered. When all items have been delivered then the both columns return to 0.

Any other thoughts anyone?


Posted By: Silent_Explorer
Date Posted: 06 October 2011 at 6:58pm
Tim, I like your suggestion regarding RC being able to produce purchase orders & integrate with the stock figures etc.

Perhaps items could automatically be added to the relevant suppliers purchase order when the stock level of a item drops below the 'Email you if Stock Below' quantity as specified in Product Manager

I can see this being a very slick and useful feature.


Nick G.

------------- - The Garage Door Spares & Automation Specialists - open your garage door at the press of a button !

Posted By: Support
Date Posted: 06 October 2011 at 6:59pm

That's a good idea.
Although can you explain whether purchase orders would be considered part of your accounts?
When you raise a purchase order with your supplier, I would expect that the supplier would raise an invoice at some point which is what would be used for your accounts rather than the purchase order. (Not a problem, just so it is clear where this fits in).

In addition it gets more complicated when you have multiple suppliers for the same product. In this instance it would need to be on the product manager as a separate product with a different itemcode. Would this be a problem?

Any other suggestions of functionality which could be used to facilitate accounts are also welcome.

So far we have:
Invoicing (Also with the ability to click on a 'pay now' link on the invoice to pay through a moto account whilst customer is on phone)
Purchase Orders
Vat Returns
Profit/Loss Reports

For those who are familiar with accounting, what is missing from the list above?

We are working on all this right now so it will all be appearing in the next couple of weeks. It would be great if we can get the spec right in advance rather than noticing ommissions after.

Update: I like Nick G's suggestion about automatically populating purchase orders too. Maybe a product could be linked to a supplier, then the purchase order could automatically be created. Although this might be a problem with minimum order levels etc.

Many Thanks

Posted By: raineshoe
Date Posted: 07 October 2011 at 8:08am
Yes purchase orders for me too as Quickbooks does that and its great. It then adds to the stock when you say the purchase order has arrived.

Credit notes from the accounts.

We can get reports on virtually anything in Quickbooks.

Trouble is sometimes its difficult to think of it all in one go. Its only as you start to use you find the hiccups. We will try hard though.

Looking forward to this as I hope if it is as good as my package now I can stop duplicating effort. YAY.

Posted By: raineshoe
Date Posted: 07 October 2011 at 8:11am
Just noticed mentioning about stock arriving and say more or less of an item arrives. We sometimes get deliveries with extras in that we didn't order, but are there to fill shortfalls of other products rather than refund.   Annoys me but that is how the dutch company we deal with work, so we then have to be able to put those items into the system.

Posted By: raineshoe
Date Posted: 07 October 2011 at 8:13am
Purchase orders - they are part of our accounts. We raise the purchase order and then when the stock arrives you can select stock arrived with bill or the other option stock arrived no bill. There is an option for the invoice arriving later. We sometimes get invoices with the order and sometimes they come weeks afterwards. Quickbooks then takes appropriate action as to whether the bill is selected or just the products received. Quickbooks is looking for purchase orders and doesn't like it much when one isn't raised, although it is possible to do that also.

Posted By: Support
Date Posted: 07 October 2011 at 11:05am

A question - if you invoice someone for 100 in january and they pay the invoice in March. Would you expect the 100 to be included in January or March's figures?

Many Thanks

Posted By: Keith
Date Posted: 07 October 2011 at 11:13am
The invoice should be included in January but the payment should be in March.

Regards, Keith

Posted By: Support
Date Posted: 07 October 2011 at 11:23am
Thanks for the reply. Does your accounting system list payments separately to unpaid invoices and paid invoice?

Posted By: Nobby
Date Posted: 07 October 2011 at 11:23am
On a retail VAT system the only date relavent is when the invoice is actually paid out or paid in, the invoice date doesn't matter at all.
I believe with the Invoicing VAT system the relavent dates are the invoice date, either in or out.


Posted By: Support
Date Posted: 07 October 2011 at 11:33am
Hi Nobby,

Presumably by 'retail VAT system' you are referring to sales where a VAT receipt may or may not be given at the time of the purchase. Either way, the invoice date is the same date as the purchase date as payment is made at the time of issue.

With the 'Invoicing VAT system' are you saying that you would pay VAT on an invoice which has not actually been paid?

Many Thanks

Posted By: tester1
Date Posted: 07 October 2011 at 11:43am
Seeing the recent posts is making me quite nervous about the "accounting" feature. I seconded the suggestion that you guys sort out all the problems first before embarking on this project, if at all.

If you must go ahead, please consult a qualified accountant and view a proper accounting package.

I suppose there are many levels of accounting functionality that you could offer but the very basics also need to include:

Trial Balance
Balance Sheet - which will incorporate such things as share capital or owner's equity, retained profit, bank account balances (possibly in foreign currencies), other liabilities
Debtors reports
Creditors reports
Stock quantity and valuation reports

How will the accounting feature those with multiple carts?

Regarding some of the discussion above ... at the simplest level, a sale is recognised at either the invoice date or the payment date, depending on whether you are operating on accruals basis or cash basis.

If someone orders 5 of widget A and only 4 are in stock, depending on how you've got RC set up, you could either allow all 5 to be ordered or just 4. If all 5 are allowed to be ordered, then 1 will go on back-order. The "accounting" feature needs to be able to show this.

Similarly, if you order 20 of widget A at your supplier but they only send you 10 because that's all they have in stock, the remaining 10 will go on back-order and the accounting feature needs to be able to show these as being on back-order.

Just some of the features that accounting packages are capable of.

Posted By: Nobby
Date Posted: 07 October 2011 at 11:49am
Hi Support
That's pretty much it. In the retail system the VAT due or owed is basically on the day money changes hands (obviously you pay/reclaim the VAT at the end of your quarter).
I don't use the Invoicing system but the VAT is due as soon as you invoice and can be reclaimed as soon as you receive an invoice even if no payments are made.
I would assume that most of RC users are retail.

P.S. I'm not an accountant (thank God) so don't take my humble word on all this :)

Posted By: raineshoe
Date Posted: 07 October 2011 at 8:55pm
You need to see what's outstanding in payments so you can chase the blighters when they don't pay.

Also I'm not VAT registered yet, but nearly there. Any accounts system needs to be able to handle VAT and those not VAT registered I'd say.

Its quite involved I think, so like the others say may be worth picking the brains of an accountant.

Posted By: handlesandhinges
Date Posted: 13 October 2011 at 10:45am
Hi, the idea of this is music to my ears, this will save double work and also my accountant will be able to log on online without coming in to visit and take away our files. I would ask though that there isa more tiered log in to enable staff to log in without seeing our days takings,turnovers etc.

Posted By: Support
Date Posted: 13 October 2011 at 11:30am
Please can you detail exactly what permissions you would like to see.

You can already disable access to the sales manager, dashboard, sales graph and reports.

With the new functionality you will also be able to disable access to new specific screens.

However is it that you don't want the member of staff to see any sales or are there specific sales you want them to see.
e.g. maybe the ability to look up an order number to view an individual sales record, but not see all the sales info.

Please let us know what you would need,

Many Thanks

Posted By: Support
Date Posted: 13 October 2011 at 11:46am

Tester1 - To begin with the functionality is more of a bookkeeping assistant making it easier to supply information needed by an accountant at the end of the year. It is not initially intended to completely replace an accountant.

The key thing here is that ourselves and presumably most merchants using RomanCart have to get details from RomanCart to create vat returns and to submit information required by an accountant. We want to make this process easier for ourselves and anyone using RomanCart.

We also want to cut through the complexity associated with accounting. As per your earlier post, there are many really simply things which sound complicated but are actually very simple. We want make everything really easy to understand, so that at the end of the year, the merchant knows their exact financial situation.

Many merchants we have met send all their paperwork to an accountant, then sign and submit the accounts they get back, without really having any understanding of what it all means.

Please be assured that we are working with qualified accountants on this functionality.

Many Thanks

Posted By: ponyandcarriage
Date Posted: 13 October 2011 at 12:24pm
We have found sage online cloud accounts to be very good for our need maybe worth a look for some - Sageone

Posted By: Support Oliver
Date Posted: 13 October 2011 at 6:35pm

Thank you for all your suggestions. Many of you have been great customers over the years.

I have a list here of features that I feel need finishing or customers have reported incomplete or feel need that little extra.

On this newer thread can you please reiterate the things that need polishing off as it were.

Also in this time please feel free to contact the support team now with these issues with as many screen shots examples and links as possible. It may be these issues have been resolved.

Kind Regards

Oliver Brason

Posted By: raineshoe
Date Posted: 13 October 2011 at 9:15pm
I've got high hopes for this as it will save a lot of work if you succeed in making a really decent accounting add on to mange your profit/loss sales, cost of goods sold etc. Please make it as good as the rest of the cart!!!

Posted By: Red
Date Posted: 14 October 2011 at 7:30am
"I have a list here of features that I feel need finishing or customers have reported incomplete or feel need that little extra.

On this newer thread can you please reiterate the things that need polishing off as it were"

Dear Oliver this is good news - re the above can you list the features you already have on your list for finishing or needing that little extra we can then add to them for you if we feel that you have missed items.

Posted By: weddingpara
Date Posted: 26 October 2011 at 6:47pm
We have just moved to for all our accounting - online and our accountant just logs in to see what he needs.

Ours is a mix of long term clients, internet orders and shop sales - we just lump the internet orders in with the shop sales.

As we are now only playing at business according to Romancart (why did they ever change from Bronze to Hobby I find that quite patronising!) - we don't need Romancart to do anything else for us.


Posted By: mnby9rpj
Date Posted: 05 November 2011 at 10:00am

I'm very excited about the new accounting features.   

I don't know about replacing my existing accounting software because you only keep data for 36 months and I need to keep electronic invoices for at least 6 years in case of investigation by HRMC.   

Being able to export sales data of more than a 1 month period would be useful for me.

I would personally like the graphs and reports section to be more detailed -with it showing gross profit, net profit etc.

Also, a facility for sending to accountant?

Posted By: mnby9rpj
Date Posted: 05 November 2011 at 10:01am
Are the features of current accounting tab ghosted on all accounts while it's being developed or do I need to activate it somehow?

Posted By: raineshoe
Date Posted: 05 November 2011 at 6:29pm
I think you will find once you can use them provided you have the right level cart they won't be greyed out anymore.

I am hoping the accounting will be good.

Posted By: cliff smith
Date Posted: 12 November 2011 at 1:03pm
Hi, I've been watching and waiting for the greyed out items to go live with interest. For what it's worth I think I would use RC for the sales ledger only. We're on invoice accounting so at present we have to change all Not Paid orders to Paid to export them for the VAT return - then mark them unpaid again to give us the correct creditors figure. I assume a once only tick box for those on Invoice Accounting could be coded to enable Not Paid invoices to be included in the sales totals. I don't think I'd use an online service for our purchase ledger. Many of our sales come in through Roman Cart so integration with the sales ledger is already well on the way. With the sales ledger everything from product cost, rates to accruals would have to be listed. Easy choice for me but I know many of you guys use the products manager with costs (we don't) so your purchase ledger is also partly integrated and calculating the gross profit is an obvious next step. Just my view. Hope it helps.

Posted By: Dave P
Date Posted: 12 November 2011 at 5:08pm
Hi Cliff,

Not sure why you're having to change the orders to Paid for the export? When I export orders from the Sales Manager, I get all orders at all statuses.


Dave P. - Gifts for all at HoneyPotGifts

Posted By: cliff smith
Date Posted: 12 November 2011 at 7:23pm
Hi Dave, Of course you are absolutely right, they all transfer whatever the status. But because I don't want to get caught out by the VAT inspector I always make absolutely sure the monthly totals on the report from RC are exactly the same as the totals we use from the .csv exported figures. Not Paid items do not get included in the RC reports (I just checked again in case I had missed a change!) so we set them all to Paid to get printed RC reports to compare and make absolutely sure both agree. Probably a bit over the top (accountancy background!) but I think this check is worth doing, especially as we have found occasional errors between the RC totals and the exported figures. Support - an example if you are listening. RC10647284 is included in our .csv export for 29/09/11 but not in the sales report totals for that day!). Still can't work out why. Regards, Cliff

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