In a nutshell, Accounts Payable are any and all short-term debt obligations owed by a company to suppliers, vendors and other creditors. So invoices, bills, vendors, suppliers - everything related to those things is considered part of the Accounts Payable process.
Payables are considered liabilities on the balance sheet, as they represent money owed that has yet to be paid.
Often, suppliers and creditors will offer repayment terms for accounts payable, such as percentage deductions for invoices paid within a specific period of time.
Examples of Accounts Payable
Supplier and vendor invoices
Outsourced marketing services
How to manage Accounts Payable in your Small Business
Any activity that has to do with paying company bills/invoices or managing your vendors and payments is considered an accounts payable activity. It can be difficult to manage that process internally, and often businesses hire accountants or bookkeepers to manage it for them.
A product like Roger can help you manage your bill pay and Accounts Payable automatically, even without hiring a bookkeeper or an accountant.
Simply setup a Roger account via the website, and start paying your bills in a few seconds. Integrate Roger with your accounting system, e.g. QuickBooks or Xero, and automatically reconcile all accounts payable quickly and easily.
NOTE: Although the two terms are often used interchangeably, accounts payable and trades payable are somewhat different. See the trades payable topic for a definition and examples.
NOTE: Accounts Payable is often abbreviated AP.