Have you ever looked at all the different bills you pay to all the different companies you get services from every month and felt overwhelmed? If so, then check out Manilla, a fairly new service that allows you to manage and pay your bills online.
It also lets you do such varied things as managing rewards points on cards, and setting up reminders to pay certain bills at certain times. It’s fast, easy and free to use, too!
When companies first started offering the option to pay your bill online, in whatever format, it was a convenience, a special new thing that made our lives easier.
Who wouldn’t like the convenience of being able to pay bills instantly without having to leave the house even to go to the mailbox (remember those little metal boxes that have all that junk mail in it?) or even fill anything out? I know I certainly enjoyed and benefitted from it.
Around the same time, of course, banks began offering more and more online access and ability to your account and the money in it. Finally and lately, came things like PayPal that make the whole online financial realm a whole new world of ease and security, not to mention instant access to funds that is often faster and less of a hassle than using a bank, depending on what you are trying to accomplish.
All of these advances in technology and online capability expansion, while very helpful at first, eventually start to fade into the background as we become used to them, and we start to feel overwhelmed again by the huge list of different web sites we have to visit and access to pay our bills online. Even paying all your bills online is less of a convenience when balanced against the fact that you may have to go to five, six, ten, twenty different web sites, each with its own log in ID and password (which you’re bound to forget at least once in your life) and each with it’s own buttons and procedures and other web-tech details. While it is still more convenient than getting up and out of the house to pay your bills, we are always looking for ways to make things easier, especially things like bills.
Enter: Manilla.com on to the scene. There are at least a few different options for anyone who wants to try and make their online bill paying easier, and many of them cost nothing. Manilla is a recent and very good example of such a site. When you first go to the page, you’ll have the option to watch a video that will demonstrate how the Manilla system works. The whole site is pretty well put together, with a clean and smooth look to the interface. If you decide you want to try Manilla, the first thing they will ask you to do, of course, is create a user name and password (pay attention to the instructions on creating a secure one) which you will then be able to use to log in immediately and begin managing your bills. Once logged in securely, you’ll begin the process of adding different bills to your profile so you can manage them. Currently, Manilla supports more than 1300 different companies, including most of the major and well known ones, and they are always adding more. That means that if the company you want to put in is not supported right now, it is likely to be in the near future. Cellular phone carriers, like Verizon and T-Mobile, are supported but the pre-paid versions of those same services are not supported yet at the time of this post. That’s just one example.
Once you’ve added all the different bill companies you want, which can include all kinds of things from cable and internet providers to magazine subscriptions and even loyalty and spending rewards programs for various different credit cards, you’ll then be able to pay those bills online when you choose. There are also lots of options for creating reminders about your bills, with email and SMS messages at selected intervals, as well as the ability to add reminders about bills that you were not able to add in the companies section (if you pay rent to a private landlord, for example). One of the neatest features of Manilla is the ability to store, retrieve and otherwise manage billing documents as well as the bills themselves. This means that you can get your online statement sent to Manilla if the company is one that is supported.
The Verdict: Manilla is a great, free way to consolidate your online bill payments in one place, to make your life easier and your cash flow better. It is both easy to use and well supported by its developers in help sections and even contact info. If you’ve got more than two bills you pay online at regular intervals, Manilla could wind up saving you a bunch of time, not to mention lowering your blood pressure. so go give it a try. It won’t cost you anything and it could be one of the smartest moves you make all year.
Until next time, my friends!
Check out Manilla here.