The market provides many software options to assist with bookkeeping for businesses like yours. But not all are created equal. Your business is not identical to others, so you should not assume software that works for some companies is right for you. Before you purchase a package, take the time to look at your needs and how well the software meets them. You will find some great tools available that can help your business run.
Intuit QuickBooks is probably the best-known accounting software on the market. Its cloud-based option gives small businesses flexibility in when and how to run, and it has a wide variety of reporting options and applications available. The interface has developed over time to be attractive and fit the needs of most accountants doing work for small businesses.
On the other hand, if you are not an accountant, the program can seem overly complex. The trade-off that Intuit provides with the bells and whistles it provides is a sometimes hard-to-navigate system. In addition, it remains one of the more expensive software options for bookkeeping for businesses.
In recent years, Xero has grown as a serious challenger to Intuit among accounting software providers. Its web-based interface allows you to import directly from your online banking and other financial sites, as well as supporting invoicing and other business applications. And it has responded to the needs of small businesses in particular by simplifying its interface and focusing on being user-friendly. Small businesses need not hire CPAs just to operate Xero’s bookkeeping software.
One disadvantage for Xero is that it does not support as broad a range of functions as Intuit. Still, it provides all you need for most small business bookkeeping functions, at a much lower price point than Intuit provides.
FreshBooks has become another popular market alternative to Intuit. It uses a simple, streamlined interface that focuses primarily on ease of use, and includes a free mobile app that you can use on the go. It provides a broad range of functionality for your business. And it even personalizes your interface with motivational messages when you log in.
The primary drawbacks to FreshBooks are limited reporting and limited functionality with the app. You still need to move into a web browser to access much of the functionality that the site itself provides. Still, its bookkeeping functionalities for businesses lend simplicity and a unique appearance that many will find attractive.