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on 22 May 2012
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
You can tell straight away that Instant Accounts 2012 is aimed at people who know little about accounting. It's help and wizards are extensive and on first use it's possible to get up and running surprisingly quickly.

Day to day tasks such as sales, purchases and invoices are very straightforward, and a large range of reports is provided. VAT returns can be prepared for sending direct to HMRC and general accounting data can be easily shared with your accountant. The diary is a very handy feature, and Instant Accounts also integrates with Microsoft Office.

Instant Accounts 2012 is very good product aimed squarely at the small business and sole trader. It's ideal for people who want to do their own accounts but don't want to be pre-occupied with the complexities of book-keeping.
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Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I have tested a number of accounting software for the Amazon vine programme. I have found virtually all the software I have tested as being easy to use and good. This package was easy to load and comes with a number of video tutorials. I have to say I do not like the videos as they are very boring and not engaging at all. This issue I have with the videos is a minor problem as the software is intuitive to use with lots of "wizards" to help you make the most of the software.

The software itself is pretty competent for use by a small business and it allows you to file certain parts of the tax return directly with Inland Revenue. I found this package easy to use and probably the most intuitive of any accounting software I have tested for the Vine programme. I would not recommend it for a large complex organisation, but for a small business it is simple and almost perfect.

Highly Recommended.
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VINE VOICEon 21 June 2012
This is a very effective piece of software from the name you can trust. You know that buying something from Sage will do the job and this is no exception. Designed for small businesses, market traders and the like, this is accounting made as simple yet thorough as possible. You can send everything electronically to your accountant, should you even need one and also send VAT returns direct.

The interface is user-friendly and there are even video tutorials should you find the learning curve a little steep. If you're in the market for an accounting package then you really can't go wrong with this.
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on 24 November 2012
Easy to use, clear instructions. Would recommend it for a small business. Have been using Quickbooks which is nore powerful but Sage is easier to use.
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VINE VOICEon 7 June 2012
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
It is hard to critically examine a competing piece of accounting software without referring back to Sage Instant Accounts, because it has been the dominant force in the market place for such a long time.
Designed for the small business where there will usually be only one user, what we have here is a rigorous accounting package that has a user-friendly interface and all the features you could want.

There isn't anything negative to say about the features, the ease of use or the relaibility of the package. It is secure, has an excellent audit trail and would be acceptable to any accountant worth their salt if you had to have your books audited. It does require some understanding of keeping records, but the instant availability of a balance sheet or a P&L report or a debtors list is generated by the software - not your knowledge. The backup facilities are simple to use.

The only negative is the addiction created to this piece of software - the annual updates, the cost of support if you need it are the sting in the tail. This is the best accountancy software for the small business. If you want the best you have to pay the price, and to be fair this isn't such a high price for such an excellent product that is the standard that all others are judged by.
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on 19 June 2012
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
As a small business, I found this software package to be everything I was looking for. I had heard a lot of good things about Sage over the years, and have also tried various other accounting softwares which had been over-complicated and which had made my computer slow and problematic. I was able to hit the ground running with Sage Instant Accounts 2012, and although it's simple, it's incredibly user friendly and does everything I could want and need it to do. I'm really impressed and pleased.
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on 22 May 2012
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
This is my first experience of Sage software and a timely one at that as I've been able to apply it to my own small business needs.

This is a big chunk of software and you can sense the power of it as soon as you dive in, and in order to get the most from it, it does deserve having it's instructions read first in some detail. There is however a really good, very accessible quick guide booklet enclosed which is worth a star in itself as I'm sick and tired [being also now longer in the tooth and grumpy], of once having bought software having to then trawl through pdf documents or printing off stuff in order to make sense of it. It's nice to have a proper little paper booklet to refer to. Thank you Sage.

So although I've only touched it's surface, I am already finding my way around Sage and can sense it is going to be very useful. The interface is crisp and easy to use and I'm finding it difficult to indentify any glaring faults. The price is a bit steep I suppose, but you do get what you pay for quite a bit with software these days, and you seem to be getting your money's worth with this package from what I can tell to date. So, it may well be worth the price but for pure business purposes of course, as it's way too advanced for simple 'housekeeping' purposes :)
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on 18 November 2012
Very disappointed with Sage.
I received this package intending to use it for printing invoices and quotations before registering it for the accounting functions at a later date when my new business venture was up and running.
I tried loading the package after receiving it and got an error message saying it had only partially loaded before then saying everything was OK. This was a Saturday and Sage support is only available Monday to Friday. I called Sage the next Monday and after an extended discussion was forced to register the product before they would go through the installation process with me. Surprise Surprise everything loaded correctly but I was now on a 45 day count down of support that I did not require at that point in time but was told that I could register for a monthly support package in the future at a cost of around £10 per month.
I have had previous experience of other vendors like this that take advantage of legislation saying that once a CD, DVD or software package is opened all your customer rights go out of the window.
Stear clear of this company if you can as these discs are not cheap, I have now reverted to using excel and word and I am more than happy with their performance.
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Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I should preface this review by saying that I reviewed this for Vine out of interest. I do not have a business. It does seem however that this product was very much designed with the small business in-mind and, from what I can tell, it works very well.
The wizards and video tutorials helped me a lot whilst I was getting the hang of this and it was incredibly easy to set up, as all software should be these days.
In the short time that I've been using it, I've found Instant Accounts to be very easy to use and to have a lot of good features for smaller businesses, such as the ease with which it can do yearly VAT returns.

I'm obviously not very experienced with this kind of software, so please forgive the limited review.
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on 21 October 2012
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Sage produces quality products and its' reputation precedes it: often considered the ultimate accounts software package, this can be advantageous yet has its drawbacks as well. It's good because it means you can do a lot with Sage programs - no matter how you need to record, analyse and manage your finances, there's a very good chance that Sage Instant Accounts will do the job. It's bad, because it make the program sometimes bafflingly complicated.

You can't fault Instant Accounts on either the level of detail or control it offers. Set up your chart of accounts properly and thereafter all you need to do is regularly record your transactions. The program will automatically create a set of double-entry books for you. This sounds so easy. Like many finance programs, Instant Accounts uses a flowchart interface to make tracking transactions easy. To start a job simply open the Customers tab and create a quote. When the job is accepted, convert the quote into an invoice, then take payment against that invoice and so on. Instant Accounts busily beavers away in the background, updating your nominal accounts.

But what about transactions which aren't associated with a new quote, for instance capital investments, bank charges or old transactions that you want to record when you first start using the program? Well, for that you need to switch over to the Company tab and enter the details into the Journal. You'll need to enter the details of every transaction twice, debiting it to one nominal account and crediting to another. And if you make a mistake when you're entering a transaction, there's a good chance you won't be able to edit or delete the error, so if you make a mistake on your opening balances or on internal transfers, you need to reverse the transactions manually.

That still doesn't excuse the complicated interface. Sage Instant Accounts feels too much like a professional program that's been slimmed down a bit and repackaged for small businesses. If you're an accounts expert or you already know Sage, then that's OK, Just buy this program and you've got something that will pretty much run your business for you. If you weren't born to bookkeep and you just want simple accounting software that will take some of the pain out of finances, then Sage Instant Accounts may not be for you.
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