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Top 6 Best QuickBooks Alternatives: A Complete Guide

Updated Oct 23, 2023

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Vishal Sanjay
Contributing Writer at businessnewsdaily.com
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QuickBooks stands out as a leading accounting software, renowned for its user-friendly interface, comprehensive features, and vast third-party integrations. Both QuickBooks Online and QuickBooks Pro cater to the accounting necessities of diverse business scales.

Yet, for those seeking a QuickBooks alternative, there are plenty of other platforms we consider among the best accounting software out there. Whether you’re initiating a new business or contemplating a switch in your accounting software, here are six formidable QuickBooks alternative platforms worth exploring.

TipTip

Read our in-depth review of QuickBooks Online if you need a refresher on the program’s features and pricing.

Top QuickBooks Alternative Solutions

The ideal business accounting software should not only manage your financial well-being but also simplify business tax processes and more. The subsequent six QuickBooks alternative platforms come packed with features tailored to satisfy your company’s accounting demands. Importantly, if you’re transitioning from another platform, these QuickBooks alternatives ensure a hassle-free data export experience.

1. Exploring Xero: A Feature-Rich QuickBooks Alternative

Xero stands out as a user-friendly, cloud-based accounting solution, streamlining the process of bill tracking, payment, and profitability analysis. Our Xero review highlighted its consistent minimalist design, evident across its interface, features, and functionalities.

What sets Xero apart is its avoidance of complex accounting terminologies, ensuring a smooth learning experience for newcomers. The platform boasts a suite of user-friendly features that encompass various facets of financial reporting and business management.

Xero features

While Xero offers core features comparable to QuickBooks and other accounting software, its unique presentation style makes it a compelling QuickBooks alternative. That’s why we picked it as one of our favorite accounting software platforms in our Xero review.

  • User-Friendly Dashboard: Both Xero and QuickBooks Online present intuitive dashboards showcasing pertinent data, including cash flow insights from all linked banks. However, Xero adopts a more streamlined approach compared to QuickBooks’ intricate design.
  • Bank Accounts and Reconciliation: Xero’s advanced bank reconciliation capability allows for the downloading of extensive transaction batches. Users can then match these with their entries, either confirming or rejecting them, mirroring QuickBooks’ functionality.
  • Reports and Customization: Xero produces precise accounting reports using the direct method, while QuickBooks provides the flexibility of generating cash flow statements via both direct and indirect methods. Xero offers over 50 report types, encompassing cash flow, sales reports, budgeting, and expense reports. Users can tailor these reports and bookmark favorites for swift access.
  • Fixed Assets Management: A feature often absent in competitors, Xero’s fixed assets management tool facilitates the effortless recording and monitoring of assets such as vehicles, machinery, and office equipment, ensuring businesses remain updated on their asset values.

Xero pricing

Positioned as a more budget-friendly QuickBooks alternative, Xero’s pricing spans from $13 to $70 monthly. Prospective users can avail of a 30-day free trial, granting full access to Xero’s features. Post-trial, businesses can select from three pricing tiers, differentiated by the volume of bills, invoices, and quotes. Each tier offers an optional Gusto payroll add-on, starting at a monthly rate of $40. [For a comprehensive understanding of this payroll solution, refer to our Gusto payroll review.]

In comparison, QuickBooks provides four service plans, each introducing enhanced features. These plans, however, come at a steeper price, ranging from $30 to $200 monthly.

Did You Know?Did you know

Xero has a unique reporting feature that allows you to compile reports into a unified “report package” with balance sheets, P&L statements and more.

2. Sage Accounting: A User-Friendly QuickBooks Alternative

For those on the hunt for an economical solution to manage their small business finances, Sage Accounting emerges as a commendable QuickBooks alternative. Our comprehensive review of Sage Accounting highlighted its suitability for freelancers and the self-employed demographic.

Sage encompasses a range of fundamental accounting tasks, from bank reconciliations and balance sheets to inventory management. For those seeking a more holistic offering, Sage 50 stands available, with the added benefit of Microsoft 365 integration at an extra charge. Both the basic and premium versions of Sage can be accessed via cloud-based or desktop platforms, with a Mac version also in the mix.

Recognizing that many of its users might be novices in the accounting realm, Sage ensures a smooth user experience with its easy setup, comprehensive guides, and top-notch U.S.-based customer support.

Sage features

Sage equips businesses with robust accounting tools, making it a strong contender as a QuickBooks alternative:

  • Microsoft 365 Integration: For Sage 50 enthusiasts, the software offers seamless integration with Microsoft 365. This allows users to view Excel reports, sync with Outlook contacts, and utilize OneDrive for backups. With data stored in the cloud, users can access their Microsoft account without the need for Sage desktop installation.
  • Intuitive User Interface: Mirroring QuickBooks, Sage adopts standard navigation protocols, ensuring effortless setup and navigation. Vital links are prominently displayed on the homepage, with new features being consistently added.
  • Comprehensive Records and Transactions: Sage boasts detailed records for inventory, customers, and vendors. Additionally, it offers intricate templates for various transactions, including bills, invoices, quotes, and purchase orders.
  • Reports and Mobile Capabilities: While QuickBooks is renowned for its report customization, Sage impresses with its multi-filter setup. The software offers interactive reports, providing detailed insights with a single click. Sage also introduces multiple mobile applications, notably a receipt-tracking app that auto-populates receipt data.

Sage pricing

At a standard rate of $25 monthly, Sage offers features like cash flow forecasting, inventory tools, and the luxury of unlimited users. Such offerings might come at a premium with other providers, including QuickBooks. While some competitors might present more budget-friendly options, the value Sage delivers, especially with its standard plan’s unlimited transactions, is hard to match.

For Sage 50 enthusiasts, pricing varies between $57.17 to $160 monthly per user. New users can avail of a 10% discount during their inaugural service year, further enhancing Sage’s appeal as a QuickBooks alternative.

TipTip

Sage’s Start plan is an excellent option for freelancers. At $10 monthly, you’ll get income and expense account management — which will be helpful when it’s time to calculate your freelancer taxes.

3. Zoho Books: An Intuitive QuickBooks Alternative

Zoho Books emerges as a potent accounting software, offering a plethora of advanced functionalities and robust invoicing capabilities, all at a fraction of QuickBooks’ cost. Despite its budget-friendly pricing, Zoho Books doesn’t skimp on features, rivaling even some of the pricier alternatives in the market.

Our in-depth analysis of Zoho Books revealed an intuitive software experience, equipped with standard accounting tools like invoice customization, project management, and time tracking. Additionally, it prioritizes data security, ensuring your financial information remains safeguarded.

Zoho Books features

Zoho Books’ accounting prowess, from time and project tracking to sales, purchases, and inventory management, is commendable and often outshines its competitors. Its comprehensive bookkeeping tools give you everything you need to complete your daily accounting checklist. Here are some standout features we found in our Zoho Books review.

  • User-Friendly Navigation and Support: Zoho Books boasts a clean, user-friendly interface. Its intuitive navigation ensures easy access to commonly used functions. A plethora of support tools, including forums, FAQs, and documentation, are available. Users can also reach out to Zoho experts through phone, email, or chat for assistance.
  • Advanced Reporting Capabilities: Zoho Books excels in generating precise accounting reports across various categories such as sales, purchases, and accounts payable and receivable. It offers advanced filters for report customization, scheduling capabilities, and the option to email reports in diverse formats. However, the number of reports you can schedule is contingent on your chosen pricing plan.
  • Customer Portal: Zoho Books’ customer portal is a game-changer, fostering enhanced client engagement and collaboration. Through this portal, clients can view invoices, make payments, and update their profiles. It also serves as a feedback mechanism, allowing businesses to gauge their performance and areas of improvement.
  • Mobile Accessibility: Zoho Books doesn’t lag behind in the mobile department, offering robust Android and iOS applications mirroring its browser-based counterpart. These apps encompass standard features and even advanced functionalities like contact records.

Zoho Books pricing

Zoho Books positions itself as a versatile QuickBooks alternative, catering to a diverse user base with its tiered plans. Businesses can leverage its advanced features without the intricacies and hefty price tags associated with QuickBooks.

A standout offering from Zoho Books is its free plan tailored for businesses generating annual revenue below $50,000. Beyond this, Zoho Books presents five distinct pricing plans, each varying based on users, customers, vendors, and feature sets. The standard plan is priced at a modest $15 monthly, a stark contrast to QuickBooks’ Simple Start plan at $30 monthly. Zoho’s other plans span from $40 to $240 monthly per organization, with the option to add extra users at a nominal $2.50 monthly fee.

Did You Know?Did you know

Zoho also has a comprehensive CRM offering that excels at lead generation, accelerating sales and measuring performance. Read our complete Zoho CRM review to learn more.

4. Wave Accounting: A Cost-Effective QuickBooks Alternative

In the realm of accounting software, free solutions are a rarity. Wave Accounting stands out as a complimentary software designed to streamline your business’s financial management. Our comprehensive review of Wave Accounting highlighted its user-friendly interface, encompassing a suite of robust accounting and invoicing tools, making it a compelling QuickBooks alternative for budget-conscious businesses.

Wave Accounting features

Wave Accounting, a cloud-based service, ensures secure, anytime, anywhere access to its suite of features. It boasts foundational bookkeeping capabilities, complemented by a range of customization options:

  • Customizable Invoicing: Wave’s invoicing capabilities are noteworthy. Users can personalize invoices with their brand logo and design elements. The software offers a variety of templates, with the flexibility to craft new ones. Additionally, it facilitates recurring payments and automated reminders for due dates.
  • Transaction Management: Wave presents a consolidated view of all transaction details on a single page, showcasing entries by date, description, and status. Its transaction management tools are unparalleled among free accounting software options, and there’s no cap on transaction volumes.
  • Intuitive Interface: Wave’s interface and navigational structure echo those of market leaders like QuickBooks. Key sections are conveniently tabbed for swift access. Its dashboard, designed for simplicity and efficiency, is particularly suited for small enterprises, freelancers, and sole proprietors.
  • Robust Security Measures: Despite its free offering, Wave doesn’t compromise on data security. It employs 256-bit data encryption and ensures both physical and electronic protection of its servers. Furthermore, Wave is Level-1 PCI compliant, ensuring the safe handling of bank and credit card details.

Wave Accounting pricing

The primary allure of Wave Accounting is its free subscription, encompassing essential accounting features typically associated with paid offerings.

However, for businesses seeking enhanced functionalities, Wave offers additional paid services:

  • Payroll services at $40 monthly (in tax service states) with an added $6 per contractor or employee.
  • Mobile receipt management at $8 monthly.
  • Credit card processing, billed per transaction.
  • Dedicated bookkeeping support priced at $149 monthly.

In essence, Wave Accounting emerges as a formidable QuickBooks alternative, especially for businesses keen on optimizing costs without sacrificing core accounting functionalities.

TipTip

If you’re a freelancer or new business without much accounting experience, accounting terminology can be confusing. Check out our list of accounting terms to familiarize yourself with industry jargon.

5. FreshBooks: A Comprehensive QuickBooks Alternative

FreshBooks, renowned for its invoicing and bookkeeping prowess, stands out as a commendable QuickBooks alternative. Our in-depth review of FreshBooks emphasized its double-entry accounting feature, positioning it as a suitable choice for businesses of all scales and solo entrepreneurs. With core functionalities like customizable invoicing, project management, and expense tracking, FreshBooks offers a holistic accounting platform.

FreshBooks features

FreshBooks is tailored for small businesses and freelancers, offering a blend of user-friendliness and a curated feature set:

  • Streamlined Invoicing: FreshBooks simplifies the process to create invoices. Users can effortlessly craft professional invoices, monitor their statuses, and facilitate direct payments from the invoice itself. Moreover, its automation capabilities ensure recurring invoices are dispatched without manual intervention.
  • Intuitive Interface: FreshBooks boasts a robust onboarding mechanism, ensuring a hassle-free account setup. Its dashboard provides a comprehensive financial snapshot via illustrative charts. Essential modules like invoices, payments, reports, time tracking, add-ons, and client management are easily accessible.
  • Advanced Project Management: FreshBooks outshines many competitors with its project management capabilities. It facilitates project allocation to team members or external stakeholders, offers flexible billing options (flat or hourly rates), and seamlessly integrates services, expenses, and invoices within projects.
  • Mobile Accessibility: With dedicated apps for both Android and iOS, FreshBooks ensures on-the-go access to functionalities like invoice creation, client record management, project handling, and reporting.

FreshBooks pricing

FreshBooks offers a tiered pricing model, with monthly plans ranging from $17 to $55, contingent on the client count and feature requirements. For larger enterprises, there’s a bespoke plan tailored to their unique needs. Periodic promotional discounts, sometimes up to 50% off the standard rates, further enhance its appeal. Additional offerings include team member integrations at $11 monthly per user and advanced payment solutions at $20 monthly.

While FreshBooks’ pricing aligns closely with QuickBooks, which boasts a broader feature set, its user-centric design and superior customer support make it an attractive QuickBooks alternative, especially for businesses seeking simplicity coupled with essential functionalities.

TipTip

If you’re interested in learning more about the differences between FreshBooks and QuickBooks, check out our detailed FreshBooks vs. QuickBooks Online comparison.

6. Oracle NetSuite: A Premier QuickBooks Alternative for Growing Enterprises

Oracle NetSuite stands distinctively in the realm of QuickBooks alternatives, catering predominantly to midsize businesses and those on an expansion trajectory. Our comprehensive review of Oracle NetSuite accentuates its superior advanced features, setting it a notch above the rest. Being an integral component of Oracle’s robust enterprise resource planning (ERP) suite, NetSuite amalgamates diverse systems essential for burgeoning businesses into a singular, powerful platform.

Oracle NetSuite features

Oracle NetSuite’s blend of process automation, ERP functionalities, and advanced attributes makes it the go-to choice for businesses poised for growth. As we noted in our Oracle NetSuite review, the software’s advanced features are what sets it apart.

  • Holistic Integration: While Oracle NetSuite’s accounting module seamlessly integrates with diverse software, its true prowess lies in being a part of Oracle’s overarching ERP suite. This suite is adept at managing multifaceted business operations comprehensively.
  • Robust Compliance Management: As businesses scale, their financial transactions become intricate. Oracle NetSuite simplifies these complexities, adeptly handling compliance and regulatory challenges. Additionally, it offers invaluable risk management support.
  • Real-time Reporting & Analytics: Oracle NetSuite outperforms many competitors with its advanced reporting capabilities. It empowers businesses with real-time insights into their financial health, ensuring decision-making is backed by the most current and accurate data.
  • Global Capabilities: Oracle NetSuite is tailored for businesses with a global footprint, offering functionalities in multiple languages and supporting various international currencies.

Oracle NetSuite pricing

Oracle NetSuite adopts a unique approach to pricing. Instead of offering tiered plans, it customizes solutions based on individual business needs. The annual fee is contingent on the industry, chosen features, and user count. While Oracle NetSuite’s pricing might be on the steeper side compared to other QuickBooks alternatives, its unrestricted user access and comprehensive functionalities justify the investment for businesses in their growth phase.

Key TakeawayKey takeaway

Consider hiring a CPA or finding a business accountant to help you prevent costly mistakes during tax season or when expanding your business.

Choosing accounting software: What to consider

Choosing accounting software that suits your business’s needs requires a thorough assessment of your business’s unique requirements and budgetary constraints. Here’s a comprehensive guide to help you make an informed decision. Remember, many leading accounting software options offer trial periods, allowing you to gauge their efficacy before making a commitment.

  • Features Offered: Identify the essential features tailored to your business needs, such as automated invoicing, bank reconciliation, comprehensive accounting reports, and inventory management. For small businesses or freelancers, it’s prudent to avoid overspending on advanced features that remain unused.
  • Pricing: Establish a budget and scout for a software that aligns with your financial constraints while offering the requisite features. Factor in the size of your business and the number of users requiring access. Stay vigilant about hidden costs, especially for add-ons like payroll accounting and processing. While established businesses might find value in premium plans, startups and smaller entities should prioritize cost-effective alternatives.
  • Reporting: Reports are the backbone of any accounting software. Ensure your chosen software facilitates the generation of intuitive, accessible, and shareable reports. Additionally, the software should streamline tax compliance.
  • User & Transaction Restrictions: Familiarize yourself with any user or transaction limitations associated with your selected plan. Opt for a plan that resonates with your requirements to avoid incurring unexpected costs.
  • User-Friendliness: The primary objective of accounting software is to streamline operations. Avoid software that complicates processes. If you’re leaning towards a complex solution like Oracle NetSuite, consider onboarding a dedicated manager for the system.
  • Customer Support & Troubleshooting: Even the most user-friendly software can pose challenges. Ensure the provider extends efficient customer support and troubleshooting assistance. Many providers also furnish online tutorials and guides to facilitate a smooth user experience.
  • Integration with Third-party Platforms: Gauge the integration capabilities of the software. Seamless integration ensures data synchronization and real-time insights across diverse platforms.
  • Security: Given the sensitive nature of financial data, prioritize software that offers stringent data protection measures, especially if it’s cloud-based or has mobile accessibility.

Accounting software can improve financial transparency

While QuickBooks is a trusted name in the accounting software landscape, it’s essential to recognize that businesses have varied needs, and a universal solution might not always be the best fit. Numerous QuickBooks alternatives can cater to your specific requirements. By meticulously evaluating your needs and budget, and exploring available options, you can identify software that alleviates the complexities of bookkeeping and accounting, ensuring a seamless financial management experience.

Vishal Sanjay
Contributing Writer at businessnewsdaily.com
Vishal Sanjay is a content writer with a passion for finance, business, and investments. With a background in accounting, he revels in digging deep into complex topics to create elegant and engaging articles that inspire readers to take action. His works have been published on leading sites such as ThriveGlobal, INTStaffing, SellCoursesOnline, and more.
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