Top 10 Alternatives to Quickbooks: Comparison of Leading Accounting Software Systems

Accounting software is more than just a financial management tool. It’s part of your company’s overall strategy to achieve its most efficient potential along with improving other business areas. By optimizing cash flow, monitoring expenses and keeping record of critical financial data, accounting software ensures your company stays at healthy financial levels.

This, in fact, drives businesses to subscribe to accounting solutions and one of the most popular entry-level solutions they use is Quickbooks. It has become almost the de facto once a company opts out of Excel spreadsheets.

But is Quickbooks your best option? In this article, we’ll show you other more robust and possibly better-fitting accounting solutions. As Forrester has pointed out–the accounting software industry continues to grow with more scalable, secure and agile general ledgers towards 2021. It’s time for business to expand their accounting software knowledge beyond Quickbooks.

What is Quickbooks?

It’s one of the most popular accounting solutions and, often, the first accounting software by small to medium companies opting out of Excel. Proof positive of its popularity is that an entire community of Quickbooks experts has flourished, third-party consultants who’ll help you maximize the solution.

Quickbooks can be deployed on-premise or cloud-hosted targeting business of any size, but mostly the smaller companies. The software, in fact, is the mother brand for different versions. You have Quickbooks Online, Quickbooks Pro and Quickbooks Enterprise. Collectively, they feature the software’s known attributes, namey, streamlining, workflow automation and integration.

Quickbooks is regarded for syncing all business finance activities under a single dashboard that’s accessible to multiple users. However, this is now standard to most accounting solutions. Its key features include actionable insights, automatic banking and tax calculations, dashboards and feeds and mobile receipt capture.

What are benefits you’ll get from Quickbooks?

  • Syncs all financial data strengthening accounting integrity
  • Accounts management lets you edit, create, share data with other users
  • Access-anywhere dashboard with customizable feeds and charts
  • Security controls like cloud and Excel export backup, payment tracker, restrictions and error alerts
  • Inclusive support in all Quickbooks packages
  • Auto syncs connected devices and activities of users

Quickbooks may be a good accounting software, but it’s clearly not the best. The advent of more robust, flexible solutions gives you more room to cherry pick in this category. Here, we have identified ten Quickbooks alternatives and highlighted their key benefits.

Top 10 Quickbooks Alternatives

1. Freshbooks

FreshBooks won our Best Accounting Software Award for 2016

It’s an award-winning accounting software and one of the best cloud app in this category. Freshbooks, in fact, occupies the top spot in our software evaluation, garnering Best Accounting Software Award for 2016  and the Supreme Software Award for 2016. This, after our review experts thoroughly assessed its features and concluded that Freshbooks can turn complex financial management to a simple, smooth experience. If you want to try out the key features of the software there is a great free trial plan that you should check out. You can easily sign up for Freshbooks free trial here.

For one, the software allows businesses to manage invoices and track and collect payments on one platform, thus, fast-tracking the order-to-collection cycle. Freshbooks integrate smoothly with payment gateways like Google Checkout, PayPal and major credit cards, as well as with many other business apps. You gain complete financial control without having to maintain a complex system.

Managing billing becomes easier, too, with Freshbooks. You can easily track current and previous invoices. Any unpaid or overdue invoice can be quickly pulled out from the system. More efficiently, an automated overdue payment can be set up to remind clients of their payments. This frees you from the stress of following up payments and, critically, keeps your cash flow healthy.

Moreover, Freshbooks Android and iOS mobile apps were noted to be exceptionally fully functional, not just a limited version of its cloud solution, as the usual practice by cloud vendors. One of its practical uses  is taking image snaps of receipts for expense management. Expense liquidation becomes simple, easy and fast; no more wasting half of your day perusing over receipts.

Likewise, navigation is intuitive and notifications against duplication or inconsistent inputs are in place. Automated task prioritization also lets you manage your time more efficiently and puts cash inflow at the top of your agenda. You can find more Freshbooks alternatives here.

Why use Freshbooks instead of Quickbooks?

  • Lower price points at $15 per month for up to five clients
  • Smoother functional design that includes an efficient invoice-to-payment process
  • More robust mobile apps, fully functional for expense management, time tracking and more
  • Cleaner interface and easier navigation design
  • Better customization such as for triggers and alerts, file management workflow, expense assigned rates, white labelling
  • Generates reports faster in just a few clicks–profit-loss reports, balance sheets, expense reports, etc.
  • Easier to filter tax data including reports and summaries
  • Wider payment integration
  • Better scalability that match needs of business of any size

Why use Quickbooks instead of Freshbooks?

  • It’s part of the Quickbooks product lineup in case you plan to use other Quickbooks versions
  • It has a more established name in terms of brand recall, having been in the market longer
  • If you only need entry-level accounting
  • Plenty of support from third-party consultants, but this entails separate charges

2. Intacct ERP

Intacct ERP meets the cloud accounting needs of small and medium companies that want to level up from entry-level accounting. It meets CPA standards and requirements across industries such as, health care, distribution and retail.

Intacct ERP has solid financial monitoring features like general ledger, project accounting, multi-currency management. The software also allows you to customize reporting based on KPIs, commissions or other metrics you want highlighted. Key features also include fixed asset management, job management, auto tax calculator and bank reconciliation.

However with a price entry of $400, Intacct is one of the more expensive accounting solutions. It is compatible with Windows, Mac and Linux. You can find more Intacct alternatives here.

Why use Intacct instead of Quickbooks?

  • Has features beyond core accounting capabilities, such as, fixed assets, project management and inventory management
  • Better customizable reporting especially for project accounting, projections and multi-currency management
  • Better adaptability to other key ERP processes

Why use Quickbooks instead of Intacct?

  • Lower price points
  • More cost-effective if you only need entry-level accounting
  • Simpler in terms of core accounting features
  • Better suited for subscription model

3. Xero

Xero is a highly collaborative accounting platform known for its user-friendly interface, which earns it the moniker, “handiest asset for managing financial activities.” It has the same feel as Freshbooks, turning complex financial processes into smooth, easy workflows using automation and templates. Thus, it is helpful for freelancers and small businesses.

Like most basic cloud accounting solutions, Xero has frictionless setup buoyed by an optional Express Setup service. Its dashboard holds the tools and navigation clicks, so it’s easy to get started with the software. From here, you can monitor billing and invoicing and get a glance over charts and reports.

Transactions are also simplified using Xero, which features multi-approval model and two-factor authentication to minimize financial fraud risk. Likewise, you can rely on Xero to get a periodic big picture constantly of your company’s health, plus keep a close eye on your inventory costs. You can find more Xero alternatives here.

Why use Xero instead of Quickbooks?

  • Dashboard gives you quick access to tools and visibility to the software’s other sections
  • More user-friendly interface with smoother navigation dynamics
  • Fits the budget and needs of freelancers and small businesses
  • Has key features unavailable in Quickbooks like smart lists, multi-currency and free unlimited email support
  • Anti-fraud controls in place

Why use Quickbooks instead of Xero?

  • Has key features unavailable in Xero like automated online banking, profit-loss balance sheet and print checks
  • Lower entry price point at $18 per month versus Xero’s $25 per month
  • Better brand recognition

4. Wave

Wave is a free app that integrates accounting and invoicing and is notable for its receipt scanning. It fits the needs of freelancers, consultants and startups with less than ten employees.

The main attraction of Wave is that it gives your business professionally designed invoices, estimates and receipts at no cost. It manages your invoices and payments, even allowing you to accept credit card processing. It’s also a useful app for expense tracking, especially its receipt scanning feature. Likewise, Wave features automated processes like recurring billing and payment alerts. You can find more Wave alternatives here.

Why use Wave instead of Quickbooks?

  • It’s free
  • Has receipt scanning tied to expense tracking
  • Neat dashboards are easy to follow

Why use Quickbooks instead of Wave?

  • More robust than Wave, offering features not present in Wave like bank reconciliation, payment tracking, exporting, tax calculations, online banking, etc.
  • Supports Android unlike Wave
  • More ideal for growing businesses with expandable functions

5. Brightpearl

Brightpearl is a sales software designed for retail, which handles orders, accounting and inventory, too. It fits retailers that want to closely keep tab of their real-time sales and manage it with daily accounting. A single retail management platform, the software allows retailers to better manage their cash flow, stocks, profitability by SKU and understand customer behavior.

It can easily integrate with ecommerce systems like Shopify, Magento, eBay and Amazon. In reality, Brightpearl is a real sales software with accounting tools than the other way around. It offers you a glimpse of customer purchases and activities and channel performance to help you optimize stocks on your retail outlets. You can find more Brightpearl alternatives here.

Why use Brightpearl instead of Quickbooks?

  • Intuitively designed for retail sales and accounting with unique features like order management, shopping management and POS
  • Has omnichannel platform that gives you visibility on various online and offline channels
  • Features centralized inventory management, which gives you better control over stocks
  • Automated bookkeeping for orders, invoices and payments

Why use Quickbooks instead of Brightpearl?

  • If you don’t need accounting to be retail-specific
  • Less expensive than Brightpearl, which charges annually from $4780

6. Zoho Books

Zoho Books is one of the user-friendly cloud accounting solutions for small businesses. It has reliable uptime, support and security and one of the pioneers in cloud accounting.

Most first-time users are happy how Zoho Books let them send professionally designed invoices, which add credibility to their small operations. But the software has more to offer, tools that consolidate accounting tasks under one hood. For example, it features cash flow management, profit and loss estimates and balance sheets. These are standard accounting tasks, but Zoho Books adds value to them with visual charts and quick overviews. You can find more Zoho Books alternatives here.

Why use Zoho Books instead of Quickbooks?

  • It belongs to the wide array of Zoho business and productivity apps
  • Easier to set up and simpler to use/navigate
  • Cleaner design with better professionally designed templates
  • Has project accounting
  • Better integration via RESTful API
  • More mobile responsive compatibility with iOS, Android
  • Lower price point entry at $9 per month

Why use Quickbooks instead of Zoho Books?

  • More established brand, at least in name
  • More expandable features, growing businesses can scale to Quickbooks Enterprise
  • Can meet large enterprise’ accounting needs

7. NetSuite ERP

NetSuite ERP offers more than just accounting tools. As an ERP it covers other key business processes like purchasing and vendor management, warehouse management and fixed asset management. It’s targeted at fast-growing mid-sized businesses and large enterprises.

As part of the NetSuite product line, the ERP solution has smooth integration with the vendor’s CRM, ecommerce and order management systems.

NetSuite ERP gives you clear visibility across your supply chain with a set of inventory, manufacturing and purchasing tools within your reach. It also speeds up quote-to-payment cycle by streamlining the sales quote, order, invoicing and payment workflows. The solution has more sophisticated features, including financial planning, revenue recognition management and payroll services. You can find more NetSuite ERP alternatives here.

Why use NetSuite ERP instead of Quickbooks?

  • It meets the accounting processes of mid-level and large enterprises
  • Seamless integration with other NetSuite modules for CRM, sales, ecommerce
  • Has sophisticated features like vendor management, fixed asset management and inventory control
  • More integrated accounting featuring smooth integration to other business processes like payroll, inventory, manufacturing

Why use Quickbooks instead of NetSuite ERP?

  • Meets your core accounting needs
  • Less expensive if you don’t need an ERP system
  • Lower learning curve than learning ERP processes

8. FinancialForce Accounting

FinancialForce Accounting offers an end-to-end solution to both small businesses and large enterprises with more complex financial management needs. The solution features core accounting capabilities like accounts payable/accounts receivable, audit trail, depreciation, general ledger and multi-currency.

Beyond the standard functions, FinancialForce offers billing & invoicing, billable hours, check printing and credit card processing. It also features ecommerce and recurring billing functionalities. Likewise, this solution has one of the more sophisticated reporting tools in the category, featuring balance sheet, profit & loss statement, sales report and vertical & horizontal analysis. You can find more FinancialForce Accounting alternatives here.

Why use FinancialForce Accounting instead of Quickbooks?

  • Has sophisticated reporting capabilities not addressed by Quickbooks
  • Covers more robust tax features like 1099 support, VAT, multiple sales tax
  • More flexible, scalable to the needs of both small business and large enterprise
  • Modularized packages gives you more flexible pricing
  • Integration with Salesforce CRM

Why use Quickbooks instead of FinancialForce Accounting?

  • Less costly if you only need core accounting features
  • Simpler to use because it lacks sophisticated tools
  • Scalable to other Quickbooks versions

9. Sage 50

Sage 50 is a desktop accounting solution ideal for small business but is scalable to large enterprise requirements. If your business is growing fast, this software fits your growth pace. It covers core accounting like AP/AR, bill payments and cash flow management. Furthermore, it performs industry-specific functions with module-level security. It also includes payroll services and credit card processing to help you expand your payment channels.

As part of the Sage suite, Sage 50 smoothly integrates with the vendor’s other enterprise systems. You also enjoy automatic backup that protects your financial data against emergencies. You can find more Sage 50 alternatives here.

Why use Sage 50 instead of Quickbooks?

  • Affords greater flexibility whether you’re a small company or large business
  • Robust functions like inventory and job management, fixed asset management and vendor management center
  • More flexible pricing using modularized model
  • Deep integration with Sage enterprise systems

Why use Quickbooks instead of Sage 50?

  • Less complex especially for core accounting features
  • Quickbooks interface is more familiar with more accountants
  • Less expensive compared to Sage 50 entry plan at $29.95 per month.

10. Expensify

Expensify focuses on helping you manage expenses and transactions with real-time reporting capabilities. It’s helpful for businesses of any size when it comes to address money management issues.

Expenses can be monitored by monthly or yearly audits. The software integrates with other platforms like your payment channels, financial institutions and credit card transactions to automatically calculate expenses over a period of time. This greatly reduces the need to manually enter expense and, in the process, fast track expense reporting. An interesting feature is its GPS-enabled expense tracking for business travel costs, which records expenses on the ground, while automatically calculate deductions or reimbursements. You can find more Expensify alternatives here. 

Why use Expensify instead of Quickbooks?

  • If you’re focused on expense management
  • If you need to control business travel costs
  • Offers free app for up to ten receipt scans

Why use Quickbooks instead of Expensify?

  • If you need core accounting capabilities
  • Has better reporting tools
  • Has better scalability to meet your growing accounting needs, not just expense tracking
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