What is the best accounting software for a small business?
Whether you are starting a small business or have been in business for a while, finding the best accounting software is essential. There is no shortage of options out there for sure, offering a wide range of services for varying price ranges. For this reason, your first step in finding the best accounting software is to make a list of features you must have. Do you want to accept payments through the software? Is the ability to customize invoices with your branding necessary? What other apps do you use that need to integrate with the accounting software? Answering these questions will help you to find the one that fits your needs.
As I mentioned, there are a ton of options out there. So, I’ve gathered my suggestions for the best accounting software for small businesses and listed them here.
Probably the most well-known name in accounting software, QuickBooks has been an industry standard for some time. It’s the most widely used software for accounting professionals, and if you have an accountant or hire one for tax season, you can give them access easily.
QuickBooks offers all the essential functions such as snap and store receipts, automatic categorizing, expense recording, linked accounts, and reports. It also integrates with many other business apps like Shopify, Square, and PayPal. It’s cloud-based and has a mobile app, so you can take your books with you wherever you go.
A variety of packages are offered so that you can curtail your account to your needs. You can get started with QuickBooks for a reasonably low investment and upgrade as you see fit. The basic plan called Simple Start will cost you $12.50 a month, and the highest is $137.50 a month for the Payroll Elite with QuickBooks Advanced account. There are no contracts or commitments, and you can cancel at any time.
Critics say QuickBooks is expensive, and it can be. But you get a lot for your money with this accounting software. You’ll rely on the training videos, forums, and online support that’s available to answer all of your questions. And if you choose to hire employees for bookkeeping tasks, many people have QuickBooks experience.
Xero was started in New Zealand in 2006 and has been called one of the fastest-growing software as service companies. Currently, over 2 million subscribers are using their services. Xero focuses on making accounting simple for small businesses, and plans begin at just $11 (subscribe, and the first two months will be 50% off). You can also choose to do a 30-day free trial to try it out if you’re not ready to subscribe.
Three plans are available: early ($11/month), growing ($32/month), and established ($62/month). The early plan limits the number of bills and invoices you can have, and growing removes those limits. With the established plan, you can add multiple currencies and claim expenses. Xero gives you all the usual functions like bank connections, reporting, invoicing, quotes, sales tax, and data capture. You can also do payroll through Gusto. Additionally, Xero connects with over 800 business apps.
Xero is a solid choice for small business accounting. If you’re not into QuickBooks, give Xero a try. The price is comparable with tons of functions.
There’s a lot of buzz about Wave as the best free option for small business accounting software. Wave was “designed for entrepreneurs,” According to their site, they pride themselves on “no trials, no catches, no limits.” But nothing comes for free, right? Well, the accounting, invoicing, and receipt scanning features of Wave are indeed free. The cost comes in through payments. Wave payment process is pay per use, and you’ll pay 2.9% + 30 cents per credit card transaction (3.4% + 30 cents for American Express). If you process ACH payments, the fee is 1% + 1 dollar per transaction.
If you are a microbusiness, freelancer, or just starting a small business, Wave is a great way to get started with accounting software and at no cost. All the essential functions are there in a clean and easy-to-use design.
FreshBooks wants to make accounting easy for freelancers, self-employed individuals, businesses with employees, and contractors. FreshBooks offers time tracking and project management tools like messaging and file sharing in addition to the usual accounting functions. Another feature that will help free up your time is giving access to team members and contractors who may help with bookkeeping.
FreshBooks offers three affordable packages. Lite accounts are $6 per month and include tracking, invoicing, and payments. Plus, accounts are $10 per month and add reporting and the ability to invite your accountant on the account. With a Premium account, you’ll pay $20 per month and gain the ability to customize emails, signatures, and send out late payment reminders.
Source: Zoho Books
seems like much more than accounting software. It is a collaboration tool that makes working with clients and vendors a breeze. You can accept payments directly from clients in the client portal and send out reminder notifications. You can upload vendor invoices and convert them to bills on the vendor side and keep vendors up to date on payment status. As your business and needs grow, add more business apps to manage other functions of your company on one platform.
Tax time is made easy with Zoho Books too. They offer automatic tax calculations, 1099 reports, and sales tax reports.
Pricing is simple with three plans: Basic ($9/month), Standard ($19/month), Professional ($29/month).
Sunrise offers you the best of both worlds – free accounting software with the option of paying for professional accounting assistance if needed. With a free account, you’ll be able to complete all the basic accounting functions your small business will need to include tax reporting, customizable invoices, and payments through SunrisePay. If you want to hire professional bookkeeping services, plans start at $149.
For small businesses that want to try managing the books in house to start with the option of getting professional help as they grow, this is a great option. Sunrise gives you a seamless transition to a paid service if you chose to go that route in the future.
Do you have a product that you sell online? GoDaddy Bookkeeping integrates with Amazon, Etsy, and eBay, so this accounting software is for you if you’re a seller. Getting started is easy. Simply link your accounts, create invoices, and go. Tax accounting and reports are included, and there is an attractive dashboard to help you navigate. You can even get a feel for the dashboard with sample data they have on their site.
You can choose from three packages. Get Paid starts at $4.99 per month. Essentials start at $9.99 per month. And Premium starts at $14.99 per month. GoDaddy Bookkeeping offers a 30-day satisfaction guarantee.