Because small businesses have less accounting needs than a large organization, accounting programs made for them only have a few accounting options. For more advanced features like payroll, inventory, and expenses, business owners must pay for premium options – most of which they will never use. But fortunately, that is not the case with the three accounting programs below.
1) Quickbooks Plus ($40 per Month/ 5 Users per Account)
Quickbooks Plus is a feature-rich accounting software designed with small businesses in mind. Its basic features include invoicing, billing, tracking expenses, creating time sheets and making estimates or quotes. For PayPal and credit card processing, you must pay extra. Besides the basic features, the software also includes inventory management for small retailers. This feature lets you track your inventory and set when to reorder products if you run out of stock.
A key advantage of Quickbooks Plus is that it lets small business owners pay only for features they use. For instance, if you do not need a payroll option, you neither get it nor pay for it. But even without this option, you can still prepare 1099 forms if you regularly hire contractors.
And even better, the software allows for cloud accounting. Thus, you can access your financial information from any Internet-enabled computer or mobile device. Finally, you get a 30 day free trial and an introductory rate of $28.00 for the first six months.
2) Xero Accounting ($70 per Month /Unlimited Users per Account)
The first difference between Xero Accounting and Quickbooks is the unlimited number of users. The second, of course, is the higher price. But there is a reason for paying a premium for Xero. Unlike Quickbooks, the payroll option is included in the price.
Save for those two small differences, the two accounting softwares have the same basic features. Xero also has the cloud option and the ability to print W2 and 1099 forms. PayPal and credit card processing also comes at an added cost. That said the high price should not put you off, Xero offers a 30-day free trial and a 30% discount for the first six months. This brings the price down to only $49 during this period.
3) Sage 50 ($439 per Year)
Sage 50’s name is indicative of the number of employees it can accommodate which is fifty (50). Apart from the basic features of Xero and Quickbooks, this software also includes free manufacturing and distribution add-ons. Project management is also thrown in. These advanced features make Sage 50 suited for both small and large businesses.
But despite its advanced features, it has a few drawbacks. For one, payroll is not bundled with the software. For that, you must go for the Premium version. There is also no free trial available. And lastly, you cannot make monthly payments. The price is one lump sum amount of $439. This brings the price of this accounting software to just under $37 a month. To make up for the lack of a free trial, the company gives you access a free demo if you contact its sales personnel.
If you are a small business owner, finding an accounting program with the right accounting solutions for your enterprise can be daunting. But, not anymore! Sage 50, Quickbooks, and Xero come with everything you need. This includes payroll, inventory, paying and managing bills and more. If you handle project management, manufacturing or distribution, Sage has add-ons for that.