However, these versions don’t receive security updates, live support, or access to cloud-based services such as live bank feeds, QuickBooks Desktop Payments, or QuickBooks Desktop Payroll. QuickBooks Desktop Premier Plus and Enterprise plans have industry-specific reports for manufacturing and wholesale, retail, nonprofit, general contractor and professional service businesses, too. For example, nonprofits can use the desktop products to run donor contribution summary reports while manufacturing, wholesale and retail businesses have the ability to forecast product sales.

Aside from the 30-day free trial, QuickBooks currently offers 50% off for three months on all QuickBooks Online plans. If you need help with the initial setup of your QBO file, you can hire a professional bookkeeper through the ProAdvisor directory. This person can customize your QBO for your preferences and needs, set up your chart of accounts, connect QBO to your bank account(s), and put automated processes into place for your most frequently-used tasks. In addition to your initial QuickBooks Desktop purchase, you can opt to purchase additional add-ons, found at desktop.apps.com. Ironic, then, that choosing a QuickBooks product can be difficult, if not downright confusing.

Best Free Accounting Software for Small Businesses

While installing QuickBooks Desktop on a single computer may take only a few minutes, installing it on multiple computers might be more complicated because each machine will need access to the company data file. Since QuickBooks Online is cloud-based and doesn’t require installation, it’s the clear winner in terms of ease of installation. Moreover, QuickBooks Online is generally easier to use and navigate than QuickBooks Desktop because it has a more streamlined and intuitive user interface. Both the online dashboard and mobile app, with their clear and straightforward graphics, are remarkably easy to understand and use.Conversely, QuickBooks Desktop was designed with accounting professionals in mind. It has a flowchart-style menu, a customizable user interface, and shortcuts for frequently used features.

  • While both QuickBooks Online and Desktop are supported by a large network of independent ProAdvisors, it’s much easier to share your books with your ProAdvisor using QuickBooks Online.
  • Despite its better mobile functionality, QuickBooks Online still lags behind QuickBooks Desktop in terms of job costing and advanced estimating features.
  • You can, however, switch your business’s account from QuickBooks Desktop to QuickBooks Online without losing your data.
  • Like any enterprise software, QuickBooks Desktop can feel overwhelming at first.
  • With so many options, nailing the proper choice for your needs may appear more challenging than actually using the software.

QuickBooks Desktop is usually preferred if you are looking for industry-specific features or have more complex accounting needs. Our accounting software experts graded QuickBooks Enterprise on over 30 factors across five categories ― including pricing, accounting features, ease of use, customer experience and more. Then we used our standardized rubric to calculate how QuickBooks Desktop Enterprise compares to other enterprise and small-business accounting solutions. Along with everyday accounting tools, QuickBooks Enterprise Desktop offers industry-specific  editions with extra features. Accountants, contractors, manufacturers, non-profits, professional services and retail and wholesale businesses can all enjoy an industry-tailored QuickBooks experience. Zoho Invoice is most suitable for freelancers and small service-based businesses, mostly because it doesn’t include inventory tracking or full accounting features.

Industry-specific Features (Winner: QuickBooks Desktop)

Get things done efficiently with third-party apps that specialize in specific tasks like expense tracking, inventory management, and more. Users of desktop versions of QuickBooks say that you’ll experience faster run times, fewer bugs, and better customer support in comparison to the online counterpart. Desktop versions of QuickBooks consistently receive higher ratings across review websites, although this could be due to the history of QuickBooks Desktop vs Online.

Enhancing Desktop with Cloud Hosting

While QuickBooks Desktop offers a full suite of accounting tools, Oracle NetSuite includes far more features in its ERP. So NetSuite can replace more of your software ― and scale to work for much larger businesses. There are plenty of free accounting apps available that are similar to QuickBooks. Zoho Invoice is one of Forbes Advisor’s picks for the best free invoicing software because it’s 100% free (with online payment fees notwithstanding). Plus, Zoho Invoice integrates with other Zoho products, including Zoho CRM, our top choice for the best customer relationship management (CRM) for small businesses. Plans range from $17 to $55 per month (minus an introductory discount for the first several months), and if you accept bank transfers for payment, you’re only charged a 1% ACH fee.

Monthly plans can be expensive

QuickBooks offers some essential features that small businesses need to organize and operate the finances of their business. Depending on your budget, it may or may not be worth it for your small business. We wanted to gauge the opinions of real users of these QuickBooks alternatives and turned to third-party websites to get a gauge of how these customers felt about their experiences with them. Using information gleaned from Capterra, G2 and Trustpilot, we looked for highly scored reviews (those received that were at least 3.5 out of 5) from real users to give us the fullest picture of these providers. Xero is one of the best QuickBooks alternatives because it’s rich with features established businesses need to manage finances and projects.

When you sell driving lessons, you are asking your client to purchase a specific service from you. The client may pay at the time of the service or they might send a check later. Based on feedback I have received from clients, the other benefits of Plus do not warrant the additional cost. DIY clients often find that hiring a professional bookkeeper for on-demand support is a better use of their time and money than the 24/7 support desk. By not purchasing the Plus edition of the software, you lose the automatic backups, but those can be easily handled by yourself. For both QuickBooks products, Intuit QuickBooks mobile apps are offered for Apple iOS and Google Android devices.

What is the difference between QuickBooks Enterprise and Quickbooks Online?

Square Invoices is a great choice for almost any small business—from freelancers to small teams that need time cards to track hours. Having all the data you need at your fingertips will make it easier for you to help your clients with their finances, give better advice, and file their taxes with the most accurate information. Find out more about the best apps to integrate with your client’s QuickBooks Online software. QuickBooks what do “debtor” and “creditor” mean :: iowa people’s law library Desktop offers more sophisticated features than comparable features found on QuickBooks Online. Click on Reports at the top of the screen, then click on company and financial and finally over to either the profit and loss or the balance sheet report. Both QuickBooks Desktop and QuickBooks Online have the ability to set up bank rules, which are ‘if this, then that’ rules that apply to transactions imported from the bank.