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Undoubtedly the reigning leader in accounting software, Intuit's QuickBooks continues to be the choice of many small businesses for accounting, invoices, and more.
QuickBooks, whether the desktop or online version, contains nearly every accounting and bookkeeping feature that a small business needs. The accounting software is good for small businesses of any size. It's very easy to use, intuitive for both the novice and experienced user alike.
The QuickBooks software works cleanly, with helpful add-ons such as payment processing, direct deposit, payroll and check printing, to make running your business a lot easier. Additionally, the ability to produce a variety of different accounting reports will help your business track it's financials better and conduct the analysis you need to track your costs and stay competitive.
QuickBooks updates are timely, and new accounting software versions are developed and marketed nearly every year. Updating can be an added expense, but like with most software upgrading is optional. The decision whether or not you upgrade depends on what's new and revised, and whether that need is essential to your business.
All in all, QuickBooks continues to be the best choice for most businesses. Given the many accounting features it provides, its relative ease of use, and their top notch customer support, QuickBooks is an excellent choice for your accounting needs. They earn our highest rating.
FreshBooks provides a customer friendly cloud accounting platform for service based small business owners. Users do not have to hold accounting degrees to successfully utilize FreshBooks and all of its features. This company started in 2006 and currently services over 5 million users in 120 different countries. They are a Canadian based company that is quickly becoming a highly ranked market leader for small business owners.
The beauty of cloud accounting is that records and updates may be accessed from anywhere in the world. That means time tracking and invoices may be logged and completed on the go. No need to carry around a pile of old receipts and time logs for your return back to the office. Updates may be made to FreshBooks at any time. Also, typical small office hardware and software glitches that occur will not impact your accounting records. An additional bonus is that FreshBooks suggests users can anticipate receiving client payment up to 11 days faster, at the same time, you can save up to 8 hours a week in managing invoices.
For those that like to try before they buy, FreshBooks offers a 30 day free trial offer. You can create invoices, track time, manage billing, and more. We liked that FreshBooks offers apps for iOS and Android phones, tablets, etc. They also have functionality to allow you to take pictures of your business receipts and eliminate all unnecessary paper.
The company offers 4 different no-contract plans:
FreshBooks is available to answer any questions Monday through Friday 9am to 6pm EST. Their customer service team is knowledgeable and friendly.
For those small business owners that service customers and other businesses, FreshBooks is a viable cloud based accounting platform that makes sense.
Xero is one of the "new guys" when it comes to accounting software providers in the U.S., but this hasn't stopped them from making a splash. Named the World's Most Innovative Growth Company by Forbes in 2014 and 2015, Xero connects small businesses with their data "anytime, anywhere, on any device" through their cloud-based accounting software.
Every plan with Xero includes the following:
Xero does offer a 30-day free trial, with no credit card information required to sign up. After that trial period, customers can choose from three different plans. Regular pricing for those plans is given below, and at the time of our review there was a 30% discount on the first six months of service that brought the prices down even further:
One drawback of using Xero is that you'll have to initiate any customer service issues via online chat or through their support email address; if your issue is escalated, you'll get a phone call directly from a representative, but there's no way to initiate a phone call directly to support. Some users may prefer knowing that they can reach a customer service rep a little more directly and easily, but we did find that their live chat was very responsive.
And, if you need a little more month-to-month help with using Xero for your small business, Xero has a network of accountants, bookkeepers, and other advisors who are certified in the use of Xero. Availability is somewhat limited; when we looked at the map of professionals in the U.S., we found less than 100 throughout the country - so you may need to be comfortable with getting that help remotely rather than from an expert near your zip code.
What do users say about Xero's accounting software? Customer reviews are overwhelmingly positive, citing Xero's easy-to-use dashboard that shows your business's bank and credit card balances on one screen whether at your computer or on your mobile device; easy recording that saves time on tracking expenses and deposits; absolute security of your data, which is saved remotely and backed up automatically; no software upgrades required; and, beautiful financial reports, among other praiseworthy qualities.
There's a lot of buzz about Xero as the cloud accounting software of choice, and we can see why. Their pricing is extremely affordable, their features are very robust, and the ability to get help from certified Xero experts is a definite plus. We give them very high marks, and they are definitely worth your consideration when choosing accounting software for your business.
Sage 50c, rebranded in 2010 from its former moniker Peachtree Accounting, is probably one of the best known accounting software packages. They offer a complete, out-of-the-box-desktop accounting software solution, with secure cloud and mobile access, for small & medium sized businesses (typically 0-50 employees with established businesses)
The price starts from $439, depending on the package that you purchase. The software is easy to load and get started with, and you don't need to have an advanced accounting education or background to use it.
Sage 50c is offered at 3 different levels:
All versions of Sage 50c come with:
On the downside, you have to pay to download updated tax tables. To receive these updates, as well as any type of customer support, you have to enroll in one of their subscription-based services. You can still get away with not paying for this, but you have to perform the payroll tax calculations outside the program and manually enter the numbers.
Sage 50c is also a bit lacking if you are switching from another program. Rather than a seamless import function, you have to move your data from your old application to an Excel spreadsheet and then transfer it over to Sage. Not a terribly big deal, but still some extra work for you.
In summary, if you're a growing business and need some robust accounting functions and applications, Sage 50c may work for you, despite its admittedly higher cost.
Wave Accounting is a web based accounting system. There is no software to download as everything is available online. Perhaps its best feature is that it is completely free of charge. The website application is supported by advertisers which appear on their Business Savings feature offering a page full of special offers for Wave users.
Wave Accounting started in 2010 and is based in Toronto. The application is specifically designed for the very small business and owner-operator, with nine employees or less. Wave is designed for the non-accountant because of its overall simplicity and basic features. It's likely that the accounting professional would find it much too limited for their liking, but then again, Wave is not attempting to serve that particular end-user.
Like many new startups, Wave began with very limited features. Over the past few years they really have not changed or updated their offerings to a great extent. One exception is the integrated payroll processing solution that was added for Canadian users and later expanded to the U.S. market. There is a $5 per employee charge for this feature.
Wave Accounting is sort of a jack of all trades and master of none. It offers most of the same features that the best accounting programs and websites offer, but it isn't nearly the best at any of them. It does have the ability to connect the financial institutions you work with, such as banks and credit card companies, enabling you to download your recent transactions.
Overall, Wave Accounting is a very basic, free of charge accounting solution for the smallest of small businesses. If that describes you and your business, you might want to give Wave Accounting a try.
Less Accounting is an online accounting program that seeks to offer a more simplistic alternative to more comprehensive options. Based in Toronto, Canada, the founders of Less Accounting sought to develop a program for small businesses and individuals with very basic accounting needs and did not need all of the features and functionality of larger more comprehensive accounting software. It is geared towards small businesses of 20 employees or less with simple accounting needs.
Less Accounting is completely online so there is no software to buy and load onto your computer. All of your data is kept secure and backed up using Cloud technology.
Less Accounting costs $30 per month and you must pay month-to-month. There is no contract or long-term subscription so you can cancel at any time. They do not offer a trial option but do have an online demo available off their website that at least lets the potential user get a look-see at what they can do and view the overall appearance of the program. Set up is quick and easy.
The program uses simple terms that the accounting or bookkeeping novice can understand. However, there are two deficits that are critical: The lack of an integrated payroll solution and the absence of an activity log, or audit trail.
In summary, Less Accounting is a decent option for a business that does not require much in the way of accounting tools. If you require anything more than the most basic of services, you would be best to look elsewhere; especially given the hefty monthly costs found with Less Accounting.
Whether you're just starting a new business or trying to get your finances organized - business accounting software is a great place to start. There are a number of user friendly, affordable options that allow a company to create invoices, track payables and receivables, run reports, track inventory and much more.
Making the right accounting software choice is an important decision that's dependent on a number of variables. Some of these include the size of business, the number of employees, your desired functions, and your accounting experience. Finding the right accounting software that's flexible and user friendly is imperative to business success.
A number of business accounting software programs exist today that are designed to help small to medium sized businesses. Which accounting software product is right for your company? There are several important factors for you to consider, including:
TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best accounting software available today. We hope these reviews help you find the right accounting software that works for your business!
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