QuickBooks by Intuit is one of the most popular software accounting packages for small businesses.
QuickBooks allows users to manage their finances with confidence, allowing instant access to customer, vendor and employee information. QuickBooks is available on the cloud, as well as in a licenced desktop version.
The platform has come a long way since it was first launched in 1983, 36 years ago. Intuit was founded on the idea that accounting can be done simply to give better results, a tenet that the company has held onto since its inception.
QuickBooks Online has a client base of over 2 million users and includes various plans, project management tools, reporting options and data insights gathering.
The software has a lot to offer any business owner including customisable invoicing, inventory capability, multiple currency handling, heaps of integrations with third-party software and a very strong emphasis on reporting.
QuickBooks Online includes features such as scheduled invoicing, split transactions, automatic sales receipts, location and class categories. Not all the QuickBooks Online features are available on the desktop programme.
Our QuickBooks review found that there are four pricing tiers for QuickBooks Online. To begin with, QuickBooks offers a free 30-day trial with no credit card information required. You can cancel the service at any time. Intuit also offers regular discounts, so be sure to check out the site for any offers or news, should you wish to purchase a plan. Plans start at $6.99 per month up to $28 per month.
QuickBooks also offers additional services such as payroll and payments at an additional cost.
Hardware & Software Requirements
As cloud-based software, QuickBooks Online operates with nearly all internet browsers so long as you have internet access. QuickBooks Online also has desktop apps for Windows and Macs, which are said to run faster.
In order to read forms and use the print checks feature in QuickBooks Online, you will need Adobe Reader 7.0+ or the Firefox PDF plugin.
QuickBooks Online also has mobile apps for Apple products (iOS 9.3+) and Android products (4.1+).
Our QuickBooks review found that the online version has an impressive feature selection. Here are some of the features QuickBooks Online supports:
- Dashboard: A basic dashboard gives you an overview of your business’s financial state with charts for Invoices, Expenses, Bank Accounts, Profit and Loss, and Sales. There’s a menu on the left to navigate the most used features and a plus button and gear button on the top right-hand side of the screen where you’ll find shortcuts and more advanced features. There’s also a search transactions button and a help button, and you can enable an AI chat button in settings as well.
- Sales Overview: You can view your income over time and quickly access sales shortcuts like “new invoice” or “new sale.”
- Invoicing: QuickBooks Online offers five invoice templates and ample invoice automations (you can also import an existing invoice template via Microsoft Word). You can customize the logo, logo position, font, font size, colour scheme, header, footer, number of columns, and more. You can add shipping charges, discounts, and attachments to invoices. If you have the Essentials, Plus, or Advanced plan, you can send invoices reminders to late customers and can create recurring invoices.
- Estimates: Creating estimates and converting them to invoices is easy. Estimates are sent via email and customers receive the documents as PDFs.
- Client Portal: QuickBooks Online does offer a client portal, but only for invoices, not estimates. Customers can view, print, save, pay, or ask questions about their invoices.
- Contact Management: QuickBooks Online has a highly developed contact management system. You can save an incredible amount of information on your customers and vendors, including a display name, billing address, shipping address, preferred payment method, default payment terms, opening balance, attachments, and default tax codes. You can attach important files, like contracts, to each contact. You can also send batch emails to contacts.
- Expense Tracking: You can add individual expenses, manually import bank statements, or enable live bank feeds. You can categorize expenses, create custom bank rules, and attach receipts to expenses.
- Bank Reconciliation: You can easily reconcile bank accounts in QuickBooks Online and run a reconciliation report.
- Chart Of Accounts: A QuickBooks review found that online has a default chart of accounts, which you can customize to fit your business, or you can import your own. You have to track fixed assets manually using the chart of accounts (rather than having a built-in depreciation schedule for assets like Xero).
- Accounts Payable (Essentials, Plus Plan, & Advanced Plan Only): With QuickBooks Online, you can enter and sort bills easily. You can also create recurring bills. There’s a nice vendors dashboard that shows your total purchase orders, overdue bills, open bills, and recently paid bills.
- Inventory (Plus & Advanced Plan Only): While each plan allows you to add items or services, only the Plus and Advanced plans track inventory. When adding items you can save default sales prices, purchase prices SKU numbers, images, and create item descriptions.
- Project Management (Essentials, Plus, & Advanced Plan Only): You can create projects, add billable and unbillable time, and create billable and unbillable expenses. You can easily create invoices for projects and can use progress invoicing to invoice in steps.
- Time Tracking (Essentials, Plus, & Advanced Plan Only): In QuickBooks Online, you can create single-time activities or timesheets.
- Reports: QuickBooks Online has over 80 reports. The exact number of reports varies with each plan and the features you have access to. These reports cover everything from accounting to sales to cash flow to job-costing and more.
- Budgeting (Plus & Advanced Plan Only): Unlike the desktop version of QuickBooks (which only allows one year-long budget), you can have multiple budgets in QuickBooks Online. You can create monthly, quarterly or yearly budgets.
- Purchase Orders (Plus & Advanced Plan Only): You can create purchase orders and recurring purchase orders in QBO.
- Credit Memos: You can create credit memos and customer refunds.
- Sales Receipts: Sales receipts are another way of recording sales in QuickBooks Online.
- Packing Slips: You can create and print packing slips.
- Class Tracking: This unique feature lets you sort transactions, estimates, and billable hours by a specific location or class. You can also run reports by specific location or class for more detailed reporting.
- Default Email Messages: You can save time by creating default email messages.
- Sales Tax: You can save as many sale tax rates as needed. In addition, you can assign a default sales tax to your customers.
- Tax Forms & Support (Plus & Advanced Plan Only): The Plus plan lets you prepare and print 1099-MISCs and W-2s for each employee. There is an additional fee to e-file these forms.
- Multiple Currencies: QuickBooks Online supports over 150 currencies.
- Importing & Exporting: QuickBooks Online’s importing feature is refreshing and easy to use compared to most other programs. You can import your customers, vendors, chart of accounts, products, and services. Exporting is more limited. You can export reports to Excel. All other data can only be exported via Internet Explorer.
Customer Service & Support
Our QuickBooks review also found that the Online version offers phone support from 6:00 am – 6:00 pm, Monday through Friday; Saturday hours are 6:00 am – 3:00 pm.
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