Update: This page has been updated to include changes Xero made to its Early plan, which is geared toward very small businesses.
Plooto: Featured Sponsor
PlootoVISIT SITE COMPARE QUOTESPlooto is an all-in-one payment platform that provides greater financial control and simplicity by unifying payments, approvals, reconciliation, and reporting. Plooto’s smart approval workflows and secure electronic payments reduce errors, expedite your accounts payable process, and improve how vendors get paid. It also provides end-to-end AP and AR automation. The software is designed for small and medium-sized businesses, as well as accountants and bookkeepers. Plooto integrates with QuickBooks and Xero. You can test the platform with a 30-day free trial.
Intuit QuickBooks Online: Best Accounting Software for Small Businesses Overall
Intuit QuickBooks OnlineVISIT SITE COMPARE QUOTES QuickBooks Online from Intuit is our pick as the best overall business accounting software program. It’s easy to use and loaded with features that save you time. Intuit estimates that, on average, QuickBooks saves each user 40 hours per month on accounting tasks, which gives business owners more time to focus on managing and growing their business. QuickBooks Online can be used by nearly every type of business, and Intuit offers plans to suit businesses of all sizes, from self-employed individuals and small businesses with basic accounting needs to established businesses that need advanced features such as time, project and inventory tracking. The software is incredibly affordable, considering all that it can do. There are numerous packages, so small businesses of differing sizes can all benefit from the software. It’s rare that a business solution with so many capabilities is so affordable, but QuickBooks delivers. It’s an incredible service that small businesses across the country have utilized.READ REVIEW
FreshBooks Accounting Software: Best Accounting Software for Invoicing
FreshBooks Accounting SoftwareVISIT SITE COMPARE QUOTES Although all accounting software programs have invoicing tools, FreshBooks’ are incredibly easy to use, which is why we picked it as the best invoicing software program for small businesses. FreshBooks has a very fast, easy-to-use invoice generator. The WYSIWYG format is intuitive, and with just a few clicks, you can add billable time and expenses, customize the look of the invoice, and set up recurring invoices, automatic payment reminders and late fees. This accounting software connects to your bank, generates several reports, tracks time and helps you manage projects. We recommend FreshBooks to any business where invoices play a role in its daily operation. The price, features and usability of FreshBooks make it one of the best accounting solutions on the market.READ REVIEW
Zoho Books: Best Accounting Software for Really Small Businesses
Zoho Books COMPARE QUOTES Zoho Books caters to the specific needs of very small businesses. It does not overwhelm you with tons of features and options. Zoho offers three plans: Basic, Standard and Professional. It can support as few as two users, including you and your accountant, and provides access to 50 contacts. Using Zoho Books, you can create invoices, schedule recurring transactions, automatically send payment reminders, and track expenses, projects and timesheets. You can access Zoho Books from just about anywhere and through any device, including Apple, Android, and Windows phones and tablets. Zoho Books caters specifically to really small businesses like freelancers and new entrepreneurs, and it shows. The company has created an affordable product that adequately meets the needs of the smallest businesses. Even home-based businesses can gain a lot by using Zoho Books.READ REVIEW
Xero: Best Accounting Software for Growing Businesses
XeroCOMPARE QUOTESAlthough many businesses start small, they don’t always stay that way. You want an accounting software solution that can grow alongside your business. Xero does that. Unlike accounting software programs that base pricing on the number of users each plan supports, Xero’s subscription plans support as many users as you wish to add, so as your business grows, you can add new employees to your account for no additional cost. All plans include most features – even estimates, inventory tracking and recurrent invoicing. The software features more than 700 app integrations, and it comes with 24/7 email and live chat support. We believe that Xero’s assortment of features, combined with its customer support, makes it one of the better options on the market. When you add in the company’s cloud-based solution, you get an ideal accounting software app for growing businesses. October 2020: Xero has announced updates to its Early plan that are designed to meet the needs of new businesses and sole traders in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. It removed limits on bank reconciliations and raised the invoice limit to 20 per month. The company is now promoting the Early plan with a 50% discount to new accounts for their first four months.READ REVIEW
Wave Financial: Best Free Accounting Software
Wave FinancialCOMPARE QUOTESFor a free accounting system, Wave Financial offers many key, quality features. It connects to your bank accounts in real time, and it offers payroll and invoice features, as well as an unlimited number of accountant connections. That’s why, among other reasons, Wave is our pick as the best free small business accounting software solution. Small businesses, especially those on the smaller end of the small business spectrum, should consider using Wave. The platform is easy to use, and it offers many of the features that the best paid accounting software programs provide. There also isn’t a major drop-off in terms of quality either. Wave Financial might not be as comprehensive as some accounting software options, it is still, in our opinion, a step ahead of other free options on the market. READ REVIEW
KEY FEATURES AND BENEFITS OF ACCOUNTING SOFTWARE
There are many aspects of accounting software that help make it a useful tool. As a small business owner, it’s important to know which features to look for. Most online accounting software offers accounts receivable, accounts payable, banking and reporting features. Some include tools like inventory management, project management, time tracking and payroll tools.
Here are some of the core features to look for in accounting software:
This feature connects the software to your business bank and credit card accounts to receive a daily update of your transactions. This saves you the time it would take to manually upload transactions into the system. It also gives you a daily, rather than monthly, overview of your accounts. A real-time bank feed feature can assist with reconciliation, allowing you to make it a small daily task rather than a monthly ordeal.
When you log in to your account, you’ll be greeted by a dashboard that shows you an overview of your account activity and key metrics such as cash flow, profit and loss, account balances, expenses, accounts payable and receivable, and sales. Some allow you to customize what you see first by rearranging the information.
If your business sends invoices, being able to email them and accept online payments helps you get paid faster. Some accounting software programs integrate with third-party payment processors; others require you to use their in-house processing services. It’s a plus when accounting software can also serve as an invoice generator.
With this feature, you can schedule the system to automatically generate and send invoices for recurring charges, such as subscriptions. You can choose how frequently invoices are sent – daily, weekly, monthly or annually – and indicate whether there’s an end date to the billing. Very few of the accounting applications we evaluated include recurring invoice functionality.
Automatic Payment Reminders
This feature helps you remind customers about upcoming and past-due payments. Some have sample email text that you can use as is or customize. You can then choose when you want the reminders to be sent. Some programs give you the option of sending thank-you emails to customers after you receive their payments.
Smart reconciliation tools identify potential matches between your bank transactions and the bills and invoices that you’ve entered into the accounting software, saving you the hours it would otherwise take to sift through your bank account for this information. You can then approve or deny the suggested matches. The best applications suggest potential matches as you reconcile your accounts and a few include a reconciliation tool on their mobile apps.
Every accounting program can generate financial reports, but some are more basic than others, and some applications require you to subscribe to a pricier plan for advanced reporting. If you need specific types of financial reports, you’ll want to make sure they’re included in the software application and plan you choose. Detailed reports can help you better interpret your financial data to make informed business decisions.
Not every accounting and invoicing program has a mobile app, but the best ones do. There is, however, quite a range in the capabilities of mobile apps. Some can only capture receipts for expense tracking, some allow you to create and send invoices, and others have almost every feature the web-based software does. It’s worth checking if the software you’re considering purchasing offers a mobile app and, if so, what features are included in the app that will help you manage your business while you are away from the office.
The ability to connect your accounting software to other business programs you use saves you valuable time, because you don’t have to manually transfer data from one system to another. Payroll, payment processing, POS systems and CRM software are just a few of the popular types of integrations that are available with accounting software. Integration with systems you already use also cuts down on training time for employees who will use the software.
Tracking for Billable Hours
If you’re a consultant or your business bills clients by the hour, you need software that allows you to track and bill your time or that integrates with the time-tracking program you already use. This is an important feature for freelancers.
If you have a retail or distribution business, you need an application that helps track your inventory and helps with purchase orders. You may need to subscribe to a top-tier plan to get this feature. If you need more advanced inventory features, look for software that integrates with a dedicated inventory management system.
Firms, freelancers, and consultants who work with clients on projects or jobs should look for accounting software that helps them track their projects’ tasks and budgets. The software should allow you to invoice customers for tracked time and bill them for project expenses.
Support for Multiple Businesses
Several programs we evaluated let you add more than one business to your account, though some companies charge extra for this convenience. Also, depending on your business, one type of accounting tool may be especially important for you, which may not be as critical for another type of business. For example, if you’re running a small freelance business, project-based billing might be the most important feature on your list. If you plan to do some work on your mobile device, a full-featured mobile app might be at the top of your list for what you consider to be the right accounting solution.
ACCOUNTING SOFTWARE PRICING
Accounting software should help business owners significantly streamline billing and accounting. However, it doesn’t have to cost a lot of money. Depending on the software and features you’re looking for, most programs offer several plans to accommodate your needs and budget. With multiple options, you can choose what you want and how much you pay.
There are typically two types of pricing models for accounting software: perpetual licensing or a recurring subscription. With a perpetual licensing model, you make a one-time payment for unlimited access for the software. Subscription pricing models require users to pay a monthly or annual fee for access to the software.
For subscription pricing, expect to pay anywhere from $10 per month for a basic starter plan to as a much as $60 per month for a more advanced service plan. Other factors like the number of users you have and features you want access to will affect the monthly cost as well.
Regardless of the pricing model you select, watch out for hidden fees, which can include added charges for customization options, installation or setup services, integrations, and maintenance or support services.
If your business is on a really tight budget, there are software programs that are free. Wave, for instance, is free but still offers many of the accounting and invoicing features you would find in paid programs such as unlimited income, sales tax and expense tracking, and unlimited partners and accountants.
Many programs offer free trials and demos, which you should take advantage of. When you’re choosing accounting and billing software for your business, we strongly encourage you to take advantage of the free trials to test out the solutions and see which one offers the features and tools you need.
Spending time with software beforehand helps you feel more confident in your decision, and it reduces the likelihood that you will be stuck with a program that’s confusing to use or lacks the features you need.
Q: What is the best accounting software for accountants?
A: The best accounting software for accountants is a program that makes their job easier. Key features include income and expense tracking, bank reconciliation, and invoicing. Depending on the type of business, especially if it’s a business that carries inventory, a good program should contain all the basic financial capabilities a company needs plus inventory management. Third-party integrations are also super helpful, because they make managing your finances easier, without having to leave the program to find specific tools elsewhere. You also want to give your accountant the ability to customize certain features to their liking. This streamlines their process.
Q: Paid vs. free accounting software: Which one should you choose?
A: When it comes to choosing between free and paid accounting software, it depends on what you’re looking for and how sophisticated you need the software to be. When using a free program, you may have access to basic features, but it may fall short with its customer support options, data security, and it might be more susceptible to digital errors. Paid services, on the other hand, tend to offer more in terms of features, security and customer support.
Q: How does accounting software work?
A: The software records transactions and tracks different accounting metrics. You can set up the software to automatically sync with your bank account, or you can use an extremely basic version that might require manually entering data. We encourage small business owners, though, to use software that links to your bank and credit card provider to track your business’s finances. Further, most software solutions store the information in the cloud, and your data is secure and safe. And if your computer or server crashes or you experience other technical issues, you have an up-to-date version of your transactions.
Q: Which small business accounting system is best?
A: Based on our research, QuickBooks Online is the best overall small business accounting application. Depending on the specific needs of your business, though, another system may be a better fit or better value. For example, if your business provides a service and works with clients on a project basis, FreshBooks might be the best choice for you because of its project management features. See our best picks above and then read our reviews for our recommendations about which accounting software is best for different business sizes and needs.
Q: What do you need from your accounting software?
A: You need accounting software that tracks the money moving in and out of your business, with both accounts payable and accounts receivable features. Some software solutions, however, don’t include both accounts payable and accounts receivable information. Also, accounting software should connect to your bank and credit card accounts, and automatically download your transactions. In addition to the above, if your business is service-based, you may need project management tools. If your business sells products, you may want an accounting solution that has inventory management features. Last, look for software solutions that offer you greater advantages by connecting to other business applications you already use, such as your point-of-sale system, customer relationship management or email marketing software apps.
Q: Do you need online bookkeeping software instead of accounting software?
A: For small businesses, the term “online bookkeeping software” is interchangeable with “online accounting software” (There is a difference between bookkeepers and accountants; read this article to learn more). The best online accounting programs for small businesses have bookkeeping capabilities that allow you to record debit and credit transactions as well as accounting features that let you run reports and analyze your business’s financial performance. Look for more than just a bookkeeping solution; accounting software should include more detail, and let you generate invoices and detailed reports.
Q: Should your accounting software also act as an invoice generator?
A: It depends on your business. If you generate (or expect to generate) a lot of invoices to send to clients and customers, we recommend that you purchase a comprehensive accounting application with invoice-generating features. Freelancers should consider solutions with invoice generators as part of the software.
Q: What does an online accounting service do?
A: Online accounting services can perform several tasks for busy business owners. Some focus on bookkeeping duties, such as entering and categorizing transactions, reconciling accounts, and generating financial statements and reports that you can take to your CPA at tax time. Others provide payroll and tax preparation services. Some, such as virtual controllers, CFOs and CPAs, provide high-level accounting services like internal audits and financial planning and analysis.
When searching for accounting software, it is important to find a solution that not only offers all the features and tools you need but also fits within your budget. Candace Galiffa, the founder of NewWay Accounting, said she chose QuickBooks Online because it checked both of those boxes.
Not only does Galiffa feel the software is affordable, but it also has a number of key features that stand out to her, such as its ability to connect with banks and its invoicing platform.
“At the end of the day, most business owners are on a cash basis, and we want to make business banking as simple as possible,” said Galiffa. “This really allows business owners not to miss any deductions.”
QuickBooks’ customer service was also a plus to Galiffa. Their representatives offered guidance on using the software, which made the accounting program easier to navigate.
FreshBooks was the software of choice for Katie Thomas, CFO of Diamond J Accounting. One aspect of the software she finds particularly appealing is its bank reconciliation process. This is a key function she looks for in accounting software, because business owners receive automatic transaction updates.
However, one concern Thomas had with FreshBooks was the lack of customization available with the software’s features. “As small business owners, you want something that is going to be easy to use, accessible and can grow with you,” Thomas said. “Just because you’re a small business doesn’t mean you have to think small. You want something that can adapt and something that offers project tracking.”
Thomas referred to Xero as a fair program because of its open API and project management software integrations. For Thomas, these features were worth mentioning because they help make operations more organized and streamlined.
WHAT TO EXPECT IN 2020
The best accounting systems have features that save you time, which is important since many accounting tasks are repetitive and tedious. Despite existing timesaving features, Xero says that manual data entry takes up to 30% of a bookkeeper or accountant’s time. It’s for this reason that in 2020, software companies will continue to introduce features that use artificial intelligence to further reduce manual data entry and other repetitive tasks. Existing examples of timesaving automation include recurring and batch invoicing, recurring online payment remittance, and automated bank reconciliation and expense categorization.
As with other types of business software, more accounting systems will become cloud-based and have mobile apps in 2020, giving busy business owners anytime, anyplace access to their accounting data. The best accounting systems already have this functionality, with mobile apps that support various on-the-go tasks, such as creating and sending invoices, accepting and recording customer payments, and capturing receipts and creating expense reports.
These advances, together with an improved user interface, are making it easier for small business owners to handle accounting on their own – even if they don’t have an accounting degree. However, small business owners have many demands on their time and need help with day-to-day bookkeeping tasks. For this reason, more accounting software providers will offer bookkeeping services as an add-on to their accounting software.
Outsourcing remains a good option for small businesses, according to Purdue University Global, because it’s less expensive than hiring full-time accounting staff, plus it gives small business owners on-demand access to accountants and can lower a small business’s risk of fraud. Also, whether or not you outsource your bookkeeping, industry experts recommend working with an accountant for business analysis and strategic advice that can help your businesses grow.
To find the best accounting software for small businesses, we spent dozens of hours researching the top applications. Here is an explanation of our selection process.
Locating the Best Services
We began our research by asking business owners which accounting software program they use, what they love about it and what they think makes it the “perfect” application. We also researched popular accounting software apps that frequently appear on reputable review websites, top lists and business websites.
Choosing the Best Services
We then created an extensive list of accounting software that included the apps we identified from our research, applications we were already familiar with and vendors that have previously pitched their software to us.
We narrowed this list further based on different use cases and a wide range of criteria, including cost, features and limitations. As part of our research, we studied user reviews, watched tutorial videos, and checked out customer resources offered by each vendor, such as knowledgebases, blogs and guides.
Researching Each Service
Next, we evaluated each program by signing up for a trial or demo account and testing the software ourselves. This firsthand experience helped us understand how the features work, whether the programs are worth their price tags and if the software is as easy to use as the vendor claims it is. To further inform our decisions, we contacted each vendor to measure the quality of its customer support.
Analyzing Each Service
We started with more than 100 accounting software products on our list; however, following our research and evaluation, only 11 made it to our shortlist: FreeAgent, FreshBooks, Intuit QuickBooks Online, Kashoo, OneUp, Sage One, Sunrise, Wave Financial, Xero, ZipBooks and Zoho Books. Our picks for the top accounting software programs are QuickBooks Online, FreshBooks, Xero, Zoho Books and Wave Financial.
FULL LIST OF ACCOUNTING SOFTWARE SOLUTIONS
Here’s a full list of accounting software vendors and a summary of what each company says it offers. This alphabetical list also includes our best picks.
AccountEdge – AccountEdge offers two versions of its accounting software, plus an ERP through its parent company, Priority. AccountEdge Basic helps sole proprietors automate their bookkeeping, while AccountEdge Pro is full-featured accounting software for small businesses. Both are desktop-based with a one-time fee. If you want remote access, a cloud collaboration tool is available for the Pro plan as an add-on. accountedge.com
Account IQ – Account IQ is an accounting software that streamlines your company’s financial processes and provides business insights through management tools. This program helps companies consolidate their reports and allows users to customize features for easier use. Through cloud accounting technology, Account IQ has a heightened digital security system and an API system that supports connectivity with other systems like payroll programs. accountsiq.com
Accounting Seed – Accounting Seed is a customizable accounting software application that empowers users to connect their business applications to their banks. This makes transactional data and complete financial reports available to users. Accounting Seed also includes inventory, order management and salesforce connections tools, which makes it useful to a range of industries. Its bill automation also makes creating projects and managing invoices easy to manage. accountingseed.com
Activity HD – Activity HD is an accounting and payroll solution that makes sorting and filtering financial information effortless. This program is ideal for a range of industries in need of business management like tech, transportation and healthcare. It offers flexible reporting solutions along with add-on features to accommodate growing businesses. nqativ.com/products/activityhd
Acumatica Cloud ERP – Acumatica’s cloud-based ERP system integrates accounting, CRM and other business management applications, such as order and inventory management, project accounting, contracts, HR and payroll. It can be used by businesses of all sizes, and offers multiple versions, including options for businesses in commerce, construction, distribution, field service and manufacturing industries. acumatica.com
And Co – And Co from Fiverr is free business software for freelancers that provides many of the standard services associated with accounting software, including invoicing, subscription billing, expense and time tracking, and reporting. Its app is available for both iPhone and Android phones, and it integrates with other popular applications like Stripe, PayPal, Zapier, Slack and MailChimp. and.co
BeBills – BeeBills is an automated invoicing system for small businesses and freelancers from Norwegian company Totalkapital. You can customize invoices with your logo and brand colors, send recurring invoices, and request customer approval for billable time before sending the final invoice. If invoices are past due, you can set up the system to automatically send payment reminders or send invoices to a collection agency. beebills.com
Bokio – Based in Sweden, Bokio is a free accounting software solution for small businesses. The solution is designed to make life easier for small business owners. Bookkeeping and invoicing are two of the basic features of Bokio. bokio.co.uk
CenterPoint Accounting – CenterPoint Accounting from Red Wing Software has multiple editions of its accounting software for different types of organizations, including businesses, farms, nonprofits and municipal government. It supports an unlimited number of transactions, customers, suppliers and products, and there’s no limit to the years of historical accounting data you can store. Payroll services are also available. redwingsoftware.com
CheckMark MultiLedger – CheckMark MultiLedger is desktop accounting software for small businesses. It supports up to 10 simultaneous users, and its features include A/P, A/R, bank reconciliation, commissions, general ledger, inventory, invoicing, job tracking, purchase ordering and reporting. The company offers a cloud backup add-on for a monthly fee. The company also offers 1099 software, which you can use to print or e-file tax forms. checkmark.com/multiledger
Crunched – Crunched is cloud-based accounting software designed for both new and established small businesses. With it, you can track your finances, send quotes and invoices to customers, track bills and expenses, reconcile transactions, and generate reports. The company offers its own payment processing service, which you must use if you want to accept online invoice payments, and integrates with Gusto for payroll and HR services. crunched.io
Deltek Cost Point – Deltek offers ERP solutions to project-based businesses in more than 80 countries and across many industries, including accounting, architecture, construction, defense, energy, engineering, government contracting, healthcare, legal and marketing. It helps you manage projects, resources and finances, has advanced reporting capabilities, and is a scalable solution that can support your growing business. deltek.com/en
Denali – This on-premises accounting system from Cougar Mountain Software can be used by businesses of all sizes, including those with multiple locations. The software is modular, allowing you to customize it with just the features you need. Modules include payroll, inventory and POS. POS hardware and e-commerce websites are also available from this company. cougarmtn.com
FreeAgent – FreeAgent is cloud-based accounting software for small businesses, freelancers and consultants. It supports unlimited users, clients and invoices for one monthly price. Features include automatic bank feeds, recurring invoices, automated payment reminders and time tracking. It also has project management tools to help you track billable hours and expenses. freeagent.com
*FreshBooks – A favorite among small business owners, FreshBooks is one of the most user-friendly, cloud-based accounting applications for nonaccountants. It makes it easy to bill clients, set up recurring invoices and automatic payment reminders, and accept online payments. Its mobile app allows you to accomplish many accounting tasks on the go, such as invoicing, time tracking and managing expenses. Read our full review here. freshbooks.com
Harvest – Harvest makes it easy to bill clients and get paid. It offers a simple platform that lets you easily track time and turn billable hours into professional invoices. You can also log expenses, take snapshots of receipts, generate reports, and connect the accounting program to Google Apps, Salesforce, Basecamp and more than 50 other business programs. getharvest.com
Hiveage – Hiveage is online invoicing software for freelancers and small businesses. It allows you to create estimates and quotes, then convert them to invoices after client acceptance. The software tracks time, expenses and mileage. It also lets you accept online payments, including recurring payments such as subscriptions. All plans support unlimited clients and invoices. hiveage.com
infor Cloud Suite Financials Infor offers cloud-based enterprise software solutions, including its CloudSuite Financials & Supply Management, Expense Management and SunSystems financial management software. It also offers industry-specific ERP solutions for automotive, banking, construction, distribution, fashion, healthcare, hospitality, industrial manufacturing and retail businesses. infor.com/products/cloudsuite-financials
Kashoo – Kashoo’s online accounting software can handle your invoicing, expense tracking, and double-entry bookkeeping on your computer, iPhone and iPad. It connects to your bank accounts, accepts online invoice payments, generates reports, and offers collaboration features that let you share your books with your bookkeeper, accountant and business partners at no extra cost. kashoo.com
Less Accounting – Less Accounting is accounting software for small business owners who want to spend less time managing their finances and more time running their businesses. It automates tasks such as data entry and billing, and it has features for invoicing, tracking expenses and mileage, managing contacts, and generating reports. The company also offers bookkeeping services. lessaccounting.com
myBooks – myBooks by Zetran is affordable cloud-based accounting software for entrepreneurs and small business owners. It has enterprise-grade security and connects to your bank feeds to automatically import transactions. Your key accounting metrics are displayed as charts and graphs on the dashboard, and you can easily create attractive invoices using its built-in templates. zetran.com/mybooks/
Netsuite – NetSuite is a financial management tool dedicated to streamlining daily transactions and business operations. Through its cloud-based system, all of your company’s information is kept up to date in real time. The software includes features like revenue recognition, which helps companies comply with accounting standards. netsuite.com
OneUp – OneUp is online accounting software for small businesses that’s especially well-suited for businesses with sales teams and inventory. With it, you can create and send quotes or sales orders, convert them to invoices, track bills, and manage inventory in real time. It uses AI technology to speed bank reconciliation and includes CRM tools so your sales team can use the software to follow up on leads. oneup.com
Patriot Software – Patriot Software’s online accounting system for small business owners allows you to choose between cash, modified cash or accrual accounting methods. You can invoice your customers, track payments and expenses, and generate reports such as a profit and loss statement, balance sheet, and paid and unpaid customer invoices. The company also offers payroll software. patriotsoftware.com
Payvouch – Payvouch offers standard accounting software features as well as project management and communication tools. Its instant notification and reminder tools lets users know when an invoice is due or paid so you can properly manage your cash flow. It also holds your clients accountable by sending reminder emails to them when their payment is due. payvouch.com
*QuickBooks Online – QuickBooks Online from Intuit has both accounts receivable and payable features, and it can track projects and inventory, making it a great choice for nearly every business type. If you want to customize the software with additional features, you can choose from hundreds of apps that integrate with this system. For those who prefer to install software rather than use an online app, the company offers QuickBooks Desktop, QuickBooks Desktop for Mac, QuickBooks Premier and QuickBooks Enterprise. Read our full review here. quickbooks.com
Quicken Home & Business – Quicken lets you manage both your personal and business finances in one place, making it a convenient solution for very small businesses and home-based entrepreneurs who don’t need accounting software designed for larger or more established businesses. Although it’s only available for Windows, it has iOS and Android apps, and the Quicken on the Web feature allows you to access key features from any browser. quicken.com
Spendwise – Formerly known as Alatus, Spendwise is web-based accounting software for small businesses. It has month-to-month subscriptions and offers a free plan for very small businesses. You can use it to send quotes and invoices, manage bills and expenses, create purchase orders, track inventory, create budgets, and generate more than 50 reports. spendwise.com
Sunrise – Sunrise is attractive, basic accounting software for small service-oriented businesses. With it, you can record expenses, generate reports, and create quotes, estimates and invoices. It connects to your business bank and credit card accounts to automatically download transaction data and has a proactive reconciliation process that predicts matches. It has an iPhone app and a Chrome extension for capturing receipts. sunriseapp.com
Sage 50 Cloud Accounting – Sage 50cloud Accounting is a desktop accounting solution that automatically backs up your data to the cloud and has remote access capabilities. It integrates with Microsoft Office 365 and connects to your bank accounts to help you manage your cash flow. Features include invoicing, inventory management, expense tracking and reporting. sage50cloud
Sage Intacct – Sage Intacct is an advanced, cloud-based financial management software solution for midsized businesses. It automates processes and generates a wide range of reports, giving you the ability to evaluate your business’s performance from any financial angle. It integrates with Salesforce CRM and other popular business systems. Other Sage accounting products for midsized and large businesses include Sage 100cloud, Sage 300cloud, Sage Business Cloud Enterprise Management and Sage Fixed Assets. sageintacct.com
SlickPie – SlickPie is online accounting software for freelancers and very small businesses. Two plans are available: The Starter plan is free, and the Pro plan carries a monthly subscription fee. Features include bank feeds, online and recurring invoicing, automatic past-due reminders, bill and expense tracking, sales tax tracking, and reporting. slickpie.com
Tipalti – Tipalti’s online accounts payable platform is designed for small and midsize businesses with 100 or more suppliers or 1099 contractors, including international ones. It estimates that it can eliminate 80 percent of your accounts payable workload by automating multiple processes, including supplier onboarding, invoice processing, tax and regulatory compliance, and account reconciliation. tipalti.com
*Wave Financial – Wave’s cloud-based accounting platform is free to use and offers many of the same features as paid accounting software. It connects to your bank and credit card accounts, tracks your income and expenses, and allows you to create and send invoices, including recurring billing. Online payment and payroll services are also available from this company. Read our full review here. waveapps.com
WorkingPoint – WorkingPoint is all-inclusive, cloud-based accounting software. It connects to your bank and credit card accounts and includes tools for invoicing, bill and expense tracking, inventory management, contact management, and financial and tax reporting. The company also offers payroll and email marketing services. workingpoint.com
*Xero – Xero online accounting software for small businesses is affordable and easy to use, and it integrates with more than 700 third-party business solutions. Features include invoicing, inventory, bank reconciliation, bill tracking, reporting, and project time and cost tracking. Xero has mobile apps for Apple and Android devices, allowing you to accomplish accounting tasks on the go. Read our full review here. xero.com
Yendo – Yendo small business enterprise resource planning (ERP) software comes with accounting, CRM and project management modules as well as a dashboard that gives you a holistic look at your business. The financial module has tools to help you create invoices, send reminders, record payments and expenses, generate reports, and reconcile accounts. yendo.com
ZipBooks – This online accounting software offers several plans, including one that’s free and one that includes bookkeeping services. ZipBooks uses double-entry accounting, connects to your business bank accounts and generates a variety of reports to help you manage your business. It also includes invoicing, recurring invoicing, online payment acceptance, and billable time and expense tracking tools. zipbooks.com
*Zoho Books – Zoho Books is full-featured accounting software with a small business price tag. Features include invoicing, automatic payment reminders, time and expense tracking, reporting, and reconciliation. It has client portals that your customers can use to approve estimates, pay invoices and view statements. This software integrates with other Zoho applications, payment gateways like PayPal and Square, and popular business solutions like Office 365 and Slack. Read our full review here. zoho.com/books