In almost every well-settled business, mostly small-scale ones, business owners and associates need accounting software to record and check their income, expenses, cash flows, and other finances. It can also be done manually through journaling, but accounting software makes everything easy and efficient with fewer mistakes. Moreover, good software can easily let you know your liquidity and profitability without much effort.
Accounting software also has features, such as automation, that save time by allowing the authorized person to save and check essential documents quickly.
However, every accounting software out there is different from the others. There are many options with varying features and prices, and it depends on your firm’s operations and the number of employees to identify which one would work best for you. For instance, a one-person business wouldn’t require the same features in accounting software that a restaurant owner would.
After extensive research, we have collected seven accounting software that can be suitable for a wide variety of firms. But before we get to that, let’s look into what accounting software is for businesses and why most businesses need it.
What is Accounting Software for Businesses?
For businesses, accounting software is a specifically tailored application that businesspeople can use instead of manually recording their company finances. Alongside an accountant, accounting software assists in recording and reporting the company’s financial transactions and its assets and liabilities.
The software manages the firm’s accounts and keeps track of its revenues and expenses while allowing its individuals to store and recall critical financial documents.
Moreover, the software can prove to be a big help in filing taxes when the time occurs. It also keeps you notified about the tax time so you can prepare for it.
In other words, accounting software is like an assistant that automates everything to your ease and provides effectiveness and efficiency.
Why Do Businesses Need Accounting Software?
In today’s digital world, everything is automated, which is not currently in the process of being automated. /If you want your business to move forward with the trends, you can’t leave behind in this transformation.
It is almost necessary for today’s businesses to use accounting software instead of keeping on paper or spreadsheet finances that are always at risk of loss, theft, or corruption.
One reason to use accounting software is that it’s more accurate. It makes sure that all the entries are recorded correctly.
Another reason is that it is mobile; you can access it anywhere, anytime, with your credentials.
In addition to that, the automation of accounting software helps business owners manage them better by allowing easy tracking of their finances through proper organization of receipts, reconciliation of data, and integration with your financial institution, so you don’t have to worry about balancing numbers correctly. It does all the work for you.
Furthermore, it saves your time because all operations are just a couple of clicks away. As a result, the productivity and efficiency of your firm improve. Accounting software also promotes the culture of proper documentation and organization of documents since multiple can use the software simultaneously.
Apart from that, accounting software makes your company’s finances visible and promotes transparency, one of the finest virtues of a reputable company.
Most importantly, in just a couple of clicks, you can generate a financial report on accounting software and determine how your company is doing financially.
What Does Accounting Software Include?
Different accounting software includes different features. However, some of those are basic that every accounting software should have, such as automation, error correction, saving and recalling options, etc.
Moreover, accounting software includes functions that automatically manage your income and expenses. Such functions can handle your company’s accounts payable and receivable, track your bank transactions, generate reports, and reconcile statements. That way, you don’t have to spend time doing them manually.
One feature that is the highlight of every accounting software is that it can securely store your important financial documents. In addition to that, some of the highly-priced features of accounting software can also allow payroll integration, multi-user access, inventory management, and financial forecasting to measure the company’s profitability in the future.
Unfortunately, accounting software doesn’t include the ability to give you financial advice or answer your specific finance-related queries. It’s an automated software that can perform the functions it was designed to perform. For instance, it can get you prepared numerically for the tax time, but it won’t give you tax-saving recommendations.
Accounting software can significantly help you focus more on making practical improvements for your business and think about expanding your company while taking care of all the number-y stuff for you.
Now that you know what accounting software is, what it includes, and why you might need it for your business, it is fair that you should know our top seven accounting software and make a decision.
Without further ado, let’s get right to it.
7 Best Accounting Software for Your Business
Here are our top picks.
FreshBooks was founded in Toronto, Canada, in 2003, and it has been quite popular ever since. It uses cloud-based accounting and invoicing software that can be accessed on desktops, iOS, and Android.
FreshBooks is our number one pick because of multiple reasons. It’s pretty easy to use for new and old business owners, whether they have any accounting experience. Two, FreshBooks comes with a long list of helpful features priced reasonably and can be used with just a click.
- Recurring invoicing option (with customizations, like due date, discounts, etc.)
- Payment reminders
- Online payments
- Multi-currency and multi-language billing
- Tax-friendly expense categories
- Automated tax calculations for sales tax
- Time tracking with a Chrome extension
- Bank deposits
- Recurring payments
- Integrable with banks for auto-billing
- Integrable with tax apps for estimates, deduction, and filing tools.
- Integrable with other products, such as GSuite and Gusto
FreshBooks’ pricing range is as follows:
- FreshBooks Lite: $15/month – for self-employed businesses with 5 billable clients.
- FreshBooks Plus: $25/month – for businesses with 50 billable clients.
- FreshBooks Premium: $50/month for businesses supporting unlimited clients.
- Freshbooks Select: Custom features with custom pricing with unlimited clients.
- Easy integration with multiple software
- Easy to use
- A lot of valuable features
- Tax-friendly software
- Easy memory and payments of vendors
- ‘FreshBooks Select’ is a cost-effective option.
- Offers bundled pricing and discounts on pre-pay.
- No customization of interest
- No options for late fees per client or per invoice
- Only one yes/no structure per client.
2. Intuit Quickbooks
QuickBooks, developed by Intuit, is cloud-based accounting software that can also be purchased and downloaded on a desktop. QuickBooks mainly targets small and medium-scale businesses, which comprise seven million businesses currently using this software.
QuickBooks has an easy-to-use interface. People with no accounting background whatsoever can easily use it. As its name suggests, this software takes a quick-setup approach, wasting no time.
QuickBooks have reasonably priced features to help you organize everything and prepare your business for tax time.
- Integrable with PayPal, Square, Shopify, and financial institutions.
- User guides and exports tax data to help file quarterly and annual tax returns.
- Calculations for sales, tax returns, and recorded tax payments
- Automated sorting of transactions
- Automatically expensing tax category
- Tracks expenses in one place
- Scan receipts and attach them to invoices
- Shareable with your accountant
- Exportable documents
- Creation of customized reports
- Visible tracking of cash flow on the dashboard
- Track miles with your smartphone’s GPS
QuickBooks have the following price tiers.
- Simple Start: $25/month for new businesses
- Essentials: $50/month for growing businesses, allows 3 users.
- Plus: $80/month for grown businesses, allows better projects, contractors, and inventory management, allows 5 users.
- Advanced: $180/month, helping your business grow with analytics, insights, exclusive applications, automated workflows, and the availability of a dedicated support team, allowing 25 users with customized accessibility.
- Easy integration with different software
- Easy to use
- Extensive variety of features
- Helps your business grow
- Available for online, cloud-based use
- Cost-effective price tiers
- Lack of industry-specific features
- System can crash
- Lack of direct professional support.
- Limited transactions
- Limited number of users
3. Sage Business Cloud Accounting
Sage Business Cloud Accounting is a global brand that offers online business and accounting services. Formerly known as Sage One, this software was founded in 1981 in Newcastle, England, to handle accounting and develop estimations for small businesses.
It is a cloud-based software that gives you a free hand in choosing your industry, company size, and firm’s needs before matching you with suitable accounting solutions.
Currently being used by more than six million business firms, Sage Business Cloud Accounting is a reputable software that anyone can use, even those who don’t know accounting.
Since multiple users can use it, your accountant can access your books and use the software without any additional fees.
- Management of business finances
- Inventory management
- Cash flow management
- Accepts and receives payments
- Create and send invoices
- Payroll management
- Tax-friendly tools
- Easily accessible financial reports
- On-the-go dashboard tools for reports and analytics
Sage Business Cloud Accounting has different plans as follows:
- Accounting Start: $10/month for entry-level accounting to manage cash flow.
- Accounting: $25/month for intense accounting, including cash flow and invoice management, estimating capabilities, and unlimited users option.
- Easy to use
- Shareable with your accountant on any device in real-time.
- Add-ons are available, such as human resource management and estimating.
- Available on all devices, making it easy to check your finances on the go.
- Integrable with your financial institution and more apps, including AutoEntry and Zync.
- The company can be contacted directly for specific feature plans.
- No fast, one-click options
- Lack of basic functions
- Payment terms for debtors cannot be changed
- The creditors’ only option is 30 days
4. AccountEdge Pro
AccountEdge Pro is a desktop accounting software founded in 1989 for small businesses. Over the years, this software has developed multiple features and advancements. It also allows you to use their cloud-based app for accessing finances on your smartphone.
This accounting software offers comprehensive accounting solutions with customizable options for small to medium-sized businesses. Its robust features and accuracy are the reasons why we have included this software in our list.
Although this accounting software is a bit more complex than others, it works best if you have know-how about accounting terminologies.
- Bank integration
- Inventory management
- Direct deposits
- Easy payment processing
- Turning quotes into invoices
- Full customer management
- Full vendor management
- Full-service payroll management
- Free accountant’s copy
- Sales tax-friendly
- Data synchronization with company files
- Email support
AccountEdge has two plans:
- AccountEdge Basic (Windows only): $149 one-time purchase for one user & $199 one-time fee for smartphone support.
- AccountEdge Pro (Windows and Mac): $499 one-time purchase or $15/month for multiple users & $199 one-time fee for smartphone support.
- No additional charges for licenses, payroll services, and other functions.
- Easy bank integration
- The one-time purchase makes it cost-effective
- Straightforward plans
- More in-depth operations
- Comprehensive software with more enhanced details
- Not that easy to use
- Lacks software integration
- Requires know-how in accounting
5. Wave Accounting
Founded in Toronto in 2010, Wave Accounting is a software that provides financial services. The functions of this software mostly revolve around invoicing and accounting, along with credit card processing and payroll services.
This cloud-based software is easy to use. Business owners with no accounting experience can easily take control of their finances through this software. Moreover, all of your data will be backed up securely on this software.
Wave Accounting also allows you to sync the software with your bank to make sure expenses are recorded from time to time.
Most importantly, accounting and invoicing services on Wave Accounting are free. That being said, not all features are free, and those that are free are not as robust as paid ones.
- Unlimited income and expense tracking
- Sales tax-friendly recording of income and expenses
- Tax-friendly organization of income and expenses
- Multiple users allowed
- Double-entry system
- Dashboard shortcuts for easy-to-read financials
- Availability of reports, including profit and loss statements and cash flow.
While accounting, receipt scanning, and invoicing services are FREE with no hidden charges, there are different plans of Wave Accounting that are as follows.
- Credit card processing fees:
- 2.9% + $0.30 for Visa, Mastercard, and Discover.
- 3.4% + $0.30 for American Express
- Bank Payments (ACH): 1% per transaction with a $1 minimum fee.
- Payroll: $35/month + $6 per active employee & $6 per independent contractor. Payroll taxes are handled by the company. This is only available in specific states.
- Easy integration with the bank
- Basic invoicing and accounting features are FREE
- Easy-to-use software
- Low-cost plans
- Client information availability
- One-click financial reports
- Complex pricing plans
- Complex updates
Xero is a web-based accounting system found in New Zealand in 2006 for small and growing business firms. It was used mainly by small-time bookkeepers, accountants, and self-employed business people because it requires no accounting knowledge before its use. It was pretty straightforward to set up.
This cloud-based software is also supported on Android and iPhone via downloadable applications. Xero is known for its intuitive, easy-to-read dashboard, which can be accessed by multiple users simultaneously.
Xero has many valuable features, most importantly Hubdoc, where you can keep track of bills and receipts and their cost.
Xero is equipped with two-step authentication, so your data stays secure.
- Multi-user friendly
- Collaboration and customization with company staff and accountant
- Create expense claims
- Sends invoices
- Fast bank reconciliation
- Integrable with your financial institution and other apps
- Integrable with your bank
- Up-to-date financial reports availability
- Protection of business data
- Tells real-time cash flow
Xero has different subscription plans for businesses with different needs.
- Early: $11/month–allows 20 invoices, 5 bills, bank reconciliation statements, and capturing bills and receipts.
- Growing: $32/month–invoices and quotes, bills, bank reconciliation statements, capturing bills and receipts.
- Established: $62/month–all Growing tier features + multi-currency, expense reports, and projects.
- Straightforward to use and set up
- Detailed and understandable dashboard
- Multiple users are allowed
- Fast reconciliation with bank
- Can be integrated with over 800 add-on apps, including HubSpot and Square.
- Each plan has a free 30-day free trial.
- Limited expense claims
- Projects and costs are supported on the most expensive plans while they are the basic features.
- No debtor chasing options
- Doesn’t support exchange-traded products (ETPs).
7. Zoho Books
Zoho Corporation was founded in India in 1996 as accounting software to track finances. It can be used to create invoices and collaborate with your company accountant in real time.
Zoho Books includes multiple products that can help your company manage its finances, including accounting software, inventory management, customer relationship management (CRM), and human resource management (HRM).
Zoho Books offers useful accounting features, including categorizing account titles and automating bank feeds. Zoho Books can be integrated with about 40 applications, meaning that it can be used alongside the software you already use.
Zoho Books requires no prior accounting knowledge to be used. It is easy and straightforward. While it can be used anywhere in the world, its payroll features are only limited to companies in India. But that’s not a big problem since it can be integrated with other software that offers worldwide payroll solutions.
- Sales orders
- Tax compliance audit reports
- End-to-end accounting
- Reconciliation with bank statements
- Client portal
- Reports and schedules
- Automated tax calculations
- Exportable 1099 forms and sales tax reports
Zoho Books have the following pricing plans.
- Basic: FREE annual subscription for businesses with up to $50,000 annual revenue. Includes 2 users and allows 1,000 invoices per year. Has features like payment gateways, expense and mileage tracking, and email support.
- Standard: $12/month ($10 if billed annually) and includes 3 users with up to 5,000 invoices, recurring expenses, and email, voice, and chat support.
- Professional: $24/month ($20 if billed annually) and includes up to 5 users with up to 10 automated workflows, project profitability, timesheet tools, retainer invoices, and email, voice, and chat support.
- Premium: $36/month ($30 if billed annually) and includes 10 users, up to 200 automated workflows, budgeting tools, vendor portal, and premium integrations, with email, voice, and chat support.
- Easy to use
- Straightforward interface
- Free trial
- Pricing plans are cost-effective
- Integrable with payment gateways, including PayPal, Stripe, and Square.
- Payroll services are only for Indian companies unless you find a suitable integration.
- Not available in a lot of US states
- Limited customer support
- Forms are not convertible
- Has a lot of features but few in-depth solutions
This was our take on the top 7 accounting software solutions for your business. However, before we say goodbye to you, we have more answers to your pressing questions that can make it very easy for you to decide which solution you are going to go for.
Can FreshBooks Replace QuickBooks?
Freshbooks and QuickBooks both are reputable accounting solutions that millions of people use. However, if you are using QuickBooks and want to replace it with an alternative, FreshBooks is the right choice.
Yes, FreshBooks can replace QuickBooks. If you compare their features, ease of use, and interface, you will find FreshBooks is less stressful and has more space to grow your business. Although all software is algorithm-based and doesn’t offer financial advice, FreshBooks is more likely to provide the human support that most small companies need to grow.
In other words, you can replace QuickBooks with FreshBooks because it makes it easier for companies to serve their clients and manage their vendors.
How Much Does Accounting Software Cost?
Since accounting software varies in features and offers, it also varies in cost. Most accounting software offers their pricing plans in a subscription-based model where you choose a package or bundle you want and then pay monthly.
Typically, the least costly tier you can expect from a workable accounting software would be priced somewhere around $5 to 20$ for a month. As you move ahead with the ratings and tiers, the price can go up from $75 to $100 per month. Some accounting software, such as Zoho Books, gives you discounts if you pay annually instead of monthly. Others offer only one-time purchases, such as AccountEdge Pro, which would range somewhere around $150 to $500, depending on the type of plan you choose.
Moreover, some software also has a custom pricing model, such as Freshbooks, where you choose custom features that your company needs and pay a custom price according to that.
A lot of software also has add-on features, where you can buy additional features for an additional price. Sometimes, the price also varies based on location.
Ultimately, the cost depends on what you need and how much you are willing to pay.
How Can We Choose the Best Accounting Software?
After reading this guide, it should be easy. After extensive research, we have provided you with a list of the top seven top-notch accounting software, along with their descriptions, features, pricing, pros, and cons.
All of the accounting software in this list require minimal to no accounting experience and provide affordable, cost-effective plans. What’s more incredible is that they are integrated with a vast number of applications and software to link your software with your preferred payment or contact app for convenience.
This software is also integrable with your bank to track your expenses–it doesn’t get more efficient than this. To eliminate storage problems, most of this software also offers cloud-based backup and for device compatibility, most of them can run on both desktops and smartphones having different operating systems.
To make it even easier, you can choose to have a free trial for most of this software before actually making your decision.
Now that you know all about top-rated accounting software for your business, including their features, pros, cons, and pricing, it will be easier for you to decide upon which accounting software you want to use or switch to in order to let your small or mid-sized business work more effectively and efficiently.
We hope this guide answered your questions and helped you make a decision. We wish you the best of luck with your finances.