It takes much more than offering a great product or service to be successful in business. Businesses are less likely to fail when the company is stable, and this stability comes when owners and executives manage the company’s finances properly. The proper management of finances, especially small business finances, includes maintaining a healthy cash flow, keeping good credit, and monitoring the financial books with the right accounting software—like QuickBooks.
What is QuickBooks?
QuickBooks is an accounting software from Intuit, a publicly traded American company that offers business and financial solutions. QuickBooks is a financial solution for small and midsize businesses to organize finances, manage invoices and payments, track cash flow, and do payroll. Accounting tools enable users to analyze job costing, track expenses, create invoices, manage bills, check inventory, and create 1099 files for those who hire contractors. Payment tools in QuickBooks let companies accept credit card payments and debit cards online. They can make use of contactless and mobile payments, accept ACH and e-checks, set recurring invoices, access eligible payments the next day, and automate bookkeeping.
Optional payroll features include tax-penalty protection, auto taxes and forms, auto payroll, time tracking, and 24/7 support. QuickBooks is an online software with options for users to download desktop apps. Plans start at $15 for self-employed individuals and $25 for small businesses. All plans include mobile apps, support, and app integration.
Advantages of QuickBooks
Many startups and small businesses prefer QuickBooks for automating their bookkeeping and finance management process. As an online solution, it offers competitive pricing that is not prohibitive for businesses avoiding heavy initial expenditures. The accounting software includes many features that provide value to users, as well as the capability to integrate with other business and productivity apps. Users can easily learn how to use QuickBooks and is widely used by accountants, bookkeepers, and financial institutions.
Read also: The Pros and Cons of Using QuickBooks Online
Drawbacks of QuickBooks
QuickBooks has supported the needs of small businesses for many years. But due to changes in the business landscape, the need for the software to update is increasing. This poses a challenge to users who need to re-learn company procedures more frequently. The basic plans can also limit the ability of some companies to customize for more effective branding. The software can cover most needs of small entrepreneurs and firms in the service industry, but can be slow for larger businesses with requirements for more robust inventory tracking and management.
What to look for in QuickBooks alternatives
QuickBooks helps users track their company finances and get an overview of where their business stands—whether they’re accounting experts or not. It provides the next level of management from manually updating spreadsheets. But there are always room for improvements. Users can look for the following functionality in QuickBooks competitors:
- Designed or re-designed using the latest technology
- Scalable plans for growing business
- Option to add users on current plan without upgrading to a higher plan
- Easy to integrate with popular apps and online services
- Published compliance to regulatory and data security standards
- Double-entry accounting capabilities.
Top QuickBooks Alternatives
QuickBooks competitors vie for the top position in accounting software by offering a combination of affordability, features, and value-added service. Our list of the top QuickBooks alternatives in no particular order can help companies start in their search for the right accounting and financial solution.
Xero is a cloud-based all-in-one accounting software for small businesses, accountants, and bookkeepers. Users can track and manage cash flow processes, invoicing, payments, reporting, and payroll with plans that start from $11 per month. It is a fast, simple, and powerful software that centralizes all financial process in one place. Xero lets users sync bank and financial information, collaborate with external advisors, build integrations, and create customizations. It automates tasks, provides the full financial picture, computes end-of-year tax returns, and reconciles bank transactions. Several plans are available to easily scale business growth.
Freshbooks is an accounting solution in the cloud ideal for freelancers, self-employed professionals, businesses with employees, and businesses working with contractors. It has easy-to-use invoicing, expense tracking, time tracking, project collaboration, online payment connectivity, reporting, accounting, and mobile access. Freshbooks also integrates with hundreds of apps that can help streamline business, connect with teams and clients, and give users a better understanding of their business. Plans start at $15 with the option to add team members at $10 per user per month on any plan.
Wave is a financial software for small businesses. It is a free QuickBooks alternative that offers a simple, secure, and reliable accounting solution to help entrepreneurs manage cash flow and taxes. Software features include smart dashboards that organize income, expenses, payments, and invoices. It uses 256-bit encryption and read-only bank data connections, and PCI Level-1 certified for managing credit card and bank account information. Wave uses fully functional double entry accounting that helps accountants and businesses during year end and tax season by saving time for all. The company also offers payroll services.
Sage Accounting is small business cloud-based accounting software. It helps users take control of their bookkeeping with automation, invoicing, and remote access. Sage Accounting is easy to use, set up, and maintain. Users can get started on any device. Automation of admin tasks and invoicing helps save time and reduce errors. Business owners can auto-post expenses and payments directly from connected accounts. They can also share access with their accounting department or external accountants for easy collaboration. Other features include sending and tracking invoices automatically, get payments with Stripe, track expenses, and manage cash flows. Plans start at $10 monthly.
Bonsai is one of the alternatives to QuickBooks Online for freelancers. It is an all-in-one productivity suite that covers the whole freelance business process, from proposal and contracts all the way to accounting and taxes. Bonsai also has tools for project management, client CRM, time tracking, task tracking, forms, and invoices. It has a wide user base that ranges from design and marketing teams to development, writing, and photography professionals. Bonsai plans start at $19 per month and includes apps for iOS, Androd, Mac, and Chrome extension.
ZipBooks is a free accounting and online invoicing software. Users get tools for invoicing and billing, letting them send professional-looking invoices, get paid with major credit cards or PayPal, and set auto-billing and auto-payment reminders. ZipBooks provides bookkeeping and reporting features with easy reconciliation, full suite of reports, and auto-categorization using intuitive color-coding tools. In addition, the software provides users smart insights that help them retain their most profitable customers, get paid quicker, and compare performance against their competitors. The software also includes time tracking, team management, and on-the-go accounting with mobile access. Aside from the free plan, paid plans start at $15 per month.
FreeAgent is an easy-to-use small business software. It is cloud accounting software made for small businesses, freelancers, and their accountants. The software brings together all the financial tools such as invoicing, expense management, project management, and sales tax management. FreeAgent lets users set up recurring invoices and send them automatically. It has a comprehensive list of expense categories for organized tracking, dashboard view of all project financials, automatic bank feeds, estimate templates, and web and mobile app time tracking. US business plans start at $12 a month for 6 months, and then continues at $24 monthly.
Kashoo is a simple accounting solution for small businesses. It helps users track expenses automatically by categorizing and sorting expenses into smart inboxes that helps maximize tax deductions. The software also automatically creates a contact data when working with a new vendor. Invoices sent from Kashoo allow customers the option to pay with Stripe or KashooPay. It will send notifications when a client sends payment. Users can customize invoices for branding and create real-time statements to manage outstanding invoices. Other features include business-critical reports and insights, worry-free client payments, and secure bank feeds and connections to over 5,000 financial institutions and credit unions. Plans start at $30 monthly but smaller apps called TrulySmall are available for free.
Ready to try a QuickBooks alternative for your small business?
QuickBooks is a provider of stable and dependable accounting software that users continue to rely on over the years. But the business landscape continues to change, and what works with QuickBook users may not work with your business. Fortunately, this list of QuickBooks alternatives can help start your search easier. To choose the best accounting software system, evaluate your business and financial needs. This way, you’ll invest in the right system on the first try.