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Should you be using a receipt scanner?

What is a receipt scanner?

A receipt scanner is a digital tool that captures images of receipts. Receipt scanners can either be hardware-based or a mobile app. 

How does a receipt scanner work? 

Receipt scanners work by scanning and processing information on your receipt. With desktop scanners or portable scanners, users must manually scan receipts by feeding them into the scanner. With mobile apps, users can simply snap a photo of their receipt. 

Your scanner processes receipts and uploads the data to a predetermined location, like software, the cloud, folder files or USB memory storage. Receipt scanners such as MYOB’s Capture app use machine learning to recognise matches in transactions and then populate bills for you. 

Why should you use a receipt scanner?

Automating manual tasks saves you time and money and makes sure your data is accurate. Simplifying the process of collecting and managing receipts is better for bookkeepers and accountants recording the financial information about a business, and employees who want timely reimbursement for their expenses. 

Once all of your data is digital, you can easily search through your receipts. If your receipt data integrates with your bookkeeping system, you can also generate expenses reports in just a few clicks.

What is the cost of a receipt scanner?

Costs of desktop scanners

Quality desktop scanners could cost upwards of $200, with some models exceeding $400. Here are a few desktop receipt scanners currently on the market: 

Vupoint Solutions Magic Wand is an on-the-go, portable desktop scanner that'll cost you around $365. This scanner scans up to 1200 dpi and has a colour LCD panel so you can preview your scans. 

Brother ADS-2200 Advanced Document Scanner will cost you around $450. This scanner is designed for those needing to scan in bulk. 

Epson Workforce ES-50 A4 Portable Document Scanner comes in at roughly $177 and is a popular choice for those who want a portable solution. It's compact and runs off a USB connection to your computer, requiring no external power source (unlike most scanners).

Costs of receipt scanner apps

Receipt scanning apps tend to be more cost-effective and practical than hardware-based scanners as you don’t need to be in the office to use them. Further, some may be free with the purchase of bookkeeping software. 

MYOB Capture, for example, is a receipt scanner app that’s free for MYOB software subscribers. MYOB Business subscriptions start at $12/month and include bonus accounting and bookkeeping benefits.

What are the best use cases for a desktop receipt scanner?

Bulk receipt scanning

Many desktop scanners can scan in bulk, which is a plus for businesses with a lot of ongoing expenses. These scanners have high processing speeds and capture high-quality images, but as on-premise solutions, they aren’t effective for remote teams. 

Colour/multi-purpose scanning

If you're scanning other documents that require colour and visuals, like art or pie charts, choose a desktop scanner with a high dpi. They can more accurately render detailed images.

What are the best use cases for a mobile receipt scanner?

Outside sales teams

Mobile app scanners let field sales representatives scan and store receipts while working. This reduces time spent on administrative tasks like filing expenses. Mobile scanners also allow users to submit receipts in real-time, which can help accelerate timelines for reimbursement. 


Mobile receipt scanner apps can extract relevant data and feed it into your bookkeeping software. This saves time and, with no manual data entry required, receipt details are always accurate. 

Stay productive and profitable with MYOB

Achieving your business goals is much easier when you have help — and that doesn’t mean you need to hire more people. MYOB accounting software automates business operations like expense managementinvoicing, payroll and tax reporting, so you can spend more time focusing on strategic growth.

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