Getting started with

Receipts by Wave

Say goodbye to paper clutter

Receipts by Wave cleans up that mess of paper and turns your receipts into clean digital accounting. Using Optical Character Recognition (OCR), many of the details of your receipts are entered for you with 70% accuracy.

Here are some tips on taking a good photo of your receipt:

  • Make sure your receipt is as flat and wrinkle free as possible.
  • Take the picture directly above the receipt in a well-lit area or turn on your flash.
  • Keep still so your picture isn't blurry.
  • Some receipts are very long, with the bottom part of the receipt taken up by store marketing. If this is the case, just photograph the part of the receipt that contains the important data (merchant, transaction date, items, sub-total, total and taxes).

Note: For security reasons, do not take images of sensitive information such as credit cards and personal identification.

Scanning and uploading from your mobile device

Download the Receipts by Wave mobile app from the App Store or the Google Play Store.

When Receipts by Wave is installed on your phone, sign in with your existing Wave credentials if you already have a Wave account, or create a new account if you’re new to Wave.

Once signed in, you will see your business name at the top and a list of any receipts you have already uploaded. Make sure the business shown is the one you want to upload the image into!

Tap the plus icon. You'll have the option to either take a picture of your receipt (with the camera icon) or select an image from your camera (with the albums icon).

You're ready to move on to Process and verify for next steps!

Using the Receipts tab in Wave's web app

If you save images or PDFs of your receipts to your computer, you can easily upload them using Wave's web app.

  1. Sign into Wave, and click Receipts in the menu on the left of your screen.
  2. Click Upload receipt, located in the top right of the screen.

  3. Select a receipt to upload.

Wave will process your receipt and pull as much accurate information as possible. While it is processing, you can continue to upload more receipts.

Processed receipts appear with a blue bar to their left. Click anywhere on the receipt line and go though the details we've gathered. When you're sure all of the information is correct, click Verify. The transaction will now appear on your transactions page!

Note: Once you verify a receipt, you will not be able to edit any of the information on the Receipts page.

For more help with editing and verifying receipts, move on to the Process and verify step in this guide.

How to email your receipts to your Wave account

If you've got a receipt sitting in your inbox, or on your phone, tablet or computer, you can email it to

Follow these guidelines to successfully email receipts:

  • Send one receipt per email (we do not recognize multiple attachments per email).
  • The email has to be sent from the same email address you use to log in to Wave.
  • The receipt has to be an attachment.
  • The receipt has to be in one of the supported formats: PDF, HTML, jpg/jpeg, tiff/tif, bmp and png.

Where will the receipt import?

  • If you signed up with Wave via the web, receipts will populate the first Receipts tab you opened. For example, if you have a Business A and a Business B, and looked at the Receipts tab for A first, this is where they will import to.
  • If you signed up with Wave via the mobile app, receipts will populate in the first business you created.

When you're ready, sign into Wave's web app and go to Receipts to verify the details of your receipt.

Now you're ready to move on to the Process and verify step in this guide.

Tips for processing and verifying a receipt

Once a receipt has been uploaded into Wave, it is considered processed. At this point, the information from the receipt will not show up on your reports or on the transactions page.

While in the processed stage, you can edit any of the information on your receipt. Here are some tips on editing:

  • If you are using a mobile device, you need to log into to add new expense categories or payment accounts.
  • Any changes you make in the web app will not take effect in the mobile app until you sign out and back in again.
  • Deleted payment accounts will appear on the payment account list. This is so if you have an old bank account you no longer use, a receipt can still be marked as being paid from this bank account.
  • Triple check that the correct date is displayed.

Once you have checked all the information on the receipt for accuracy, completed any missing information and changed any inaccurate information, you can verify the receipt.

After you have verified the receipt, it becomes read-only. This means you will not be able to edit it. The information from the receipt you verified will show up on your transactions page and in reports.

On the transactions page, if you edit a receipt transaction’s description or expense category, the changes will take effect on your transactions page and reports but not on the receipts page.

Using the transactions page and reports

When you verify a receipt, it will create a transaction. If the transaction already exists (for example, it has been imported from your bank statement), you can merge the two by selecting the check box next to both transactions, then clicking Merge.

View the receipt attached to your transaction

Need to view the receipt that is attached to your accounting transaction?

  1. Click Show details.
  2. Click the paper clip icon and the image of the original receipt will appear.


After verifying receipts in Wave, these transactions will affect your accounting reports. To see your reports, log in to your Wave account and click the Reports tab on the left.

The Income Statement report will give you a list of all expense categories and totals. If you are looking for all individual transactions associated to a category, the Account Transactions report will show all transactions for a particular account.

To create a detailed report of all of your expenses, export the Account Transactions report for each of your expense categories, then manually combine them in a spreadsheet program of your choice.

Exporting Receipts

Backing up all of your images or passing them on to your accountant is easy! Follow the steps in the FAQ How to export your receipts.

More help and resources

Collaborator restrictions

If you have added a guest collaborator to your business, they will not be able to:

  • Email receipts into your business with their email address.
  • Access your business through the mobile app (only through the web app.)

Troubleshooting the mobile app

Before contacting support, try:

  • Logging out of the app and back in again.
  • If a receipt is stuck processing, wait up to 24 hours.
  • Uninstalling and reinstalling the app. You won't lose any existing receipts!

Advanced tips

Some of the more common advanced FAQs are:

More resources and help

If you ever need help, check out our Receipts by Wave FAQs or get in touch with our Customer Support Heroes. We're here to help!