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FreshBooks vs. QuickBooks Online

Many small business owners rely on cloud-based software like QuickBooks Online and FreshBooks to handle their payroll and accounting needs. In this guide, we will comparing the  FreshBooks and Quickbooks Online software to help you determine the best option for your small business.

FreshBooks overview

FreshBooks is a cloud-based accounting subscription service that helps small business owners operate their companies. The Toronto-based company claims that more than 10 million people have used FreshBooks since it was founded in 2003.

FreshBooks offers software for entrepreneurs that allows them to automate recurring invoices, easily capture expenses, log hours with time tracking, collaborate with contractors and access reports that are easy to understand. If your business is an agency, firm or consultancy, FreshBooks will also help you collaborate with your team, receive invoices from contractors, bill hours and generate automatic payment reminders and fees. The company’s site claims that these features and more help customers shave off an average of 16 hours per month using FreshBooks software. FreshBooks users can access their accounts using a computer, tablet or smartphone.

FreshBooks offers four plans — Lite, Plus, Premium and Select — with the following basic functions and features:

  • Customize invoices
  • Accept credit card payments online
  • Automatically import expenses to track spending
  • Dashboards
  • Send estimates
  • Time tracking
  • Project budgets
  • Generate powerful reports

Each of these plans has different prices depending on the additional functions they perform.

FreshBooks Lite.

At $15 per month or $13.50 per month if you choose to bill annually, the Lite plan is the cheapest of the four plans. Take a look at what you’ll be able to do with this option, in addition to the previously mentioned benefits:

  • Can share with five clients
  • Unlimited invoices and estimates
  • Track time and expenses
  • Easily accept online credit card payments
  • Automatically import expenses from your bank account

FreshBooks Plus.

This option will cost you $25 per month, or $22.50 per month if you choose the bill yearly option. This plan will allow you to share with five clients, create unlimited invoices and estimates, and track your time and expenses. Check out some of the other benefits the Plus plan offers:

  • Automatically import expenses from your bank account
  • Automatically send payment reminders
  • Charge late fees for overdue invoices
  • Accounting reports (general ledger, trial balance, chart of accounts)
  • Schedule recurring invoices
  • Send proposals

FreshBooks Premium.

This plan, priced at $50 per month ($45 per month if billed yearly) will allow you to do everything the Lite and Plus plans offer, plus automatically import expenses from your bank account, automatically send payment reminders and charge late fees for overdue invoices. See its other features below:

  • Accounting reports (general ledger, trial balance, chart of accounts)
  • Schedule recurring invoices
  • Send proposals

FreshBooks Select.

This plan offers a few bonuses that the other plans don’t. One of its most attractive features is that it allows you to bill 500-plus active clients. To find out pricing, you’ll need to get in touch with an account manager. Take a look at its other features below:

  • Lower transaction rates
  • Payment fee report
  • Advanced accounting integrations
  • Dedicated account manager
  • Automated recurring billing
  • Set payment schedules
  • Instantly charge credit cards

QuickBooks overview

Intuit’s QuickBooks is one of the most recognizable brands when it comes to accounting software. Though QuickBooks Desktop has been around since the 1990s, its cloud-based sister version, QuickBooks Online, was created in 2001. It currently has more than 1 million paid subscribers who utilize it from their computers, tablets or smartphones.

QuickBooks Online has four plans — Simple Start, Essentials, Plus and Self-Employed — that offer features based on your business’s needs and budget. All plans allow you to track your income and expenses, capture and organize receipts with your smartphone, invoice and accept payments from your smartphone, and run reports such as your profit and loss statements, expenses and balance sheets. QuickBooks Online is currently running a sale where all plans are half off their full price for the first three months. Take a look at what’s included with all plan options:

  • Receipt capture
  • 24/7 chat support
  • App integration

QuickBooks Online Self-Employed.

This plan is $5 per month for the first three months and $10 thereafter. It’s aimed at independent contractors and sole proprietors who file a Schedule C 1040 form for their taxes. You’ll be able to track income and expenses, capture and organize receipts and estimate quarterly taxes with this version. Check out the other options below:

  • Invoice and accept payments
  • Run basic reports
  • Track miles

QuickBooks Online Simple Start.

This plan, which is $10 per month for the first three months and $20 per month thereafter, will send estimates and track sales and sales tax in addition to the benefits previously listed. Check out the other benefits below:

  • Track income and expenses
  • Capture and organize receipts
  • Maximize tax deductions
  • Invoice and accept payments
  • Run basic reports

QuickBooks Online Essentials.

This plan is $17 per month for the first three months and $35 per month thereafter. You’ll be able to manage your bills more efficiently by enabling track bill status, as well as record payments and recreate recurring payments. See the other functions below:

  • All of the perks of Simple Start
  • Manage bills
  • Up to three users
  • Track time

QuickBooks Online Plus.

At $30 per month for the first three months and $60 per month thereafter, QuickBooks Online Plus is the most expensive of the QuickBooks Online plans. This option allows you to do everything the other plans offer, plus track all of your individual projects and have five-plus users.

  • All of the perks of Essentials
  • Track projects
  • Track inventory
  • Manage 1099 contractors

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FreshBooks vs. QuickBooks: How they compare

There are some features that all FreshBooks plans offer regardless of price that are only available with QuickBooks’s higher-priced plans. One of those is the ability to track your customers’ billable hours, which is available only available with the QuickBooks Essentials and Plus plans. Another example of FreshBooks’s edge over QuickBooks is that it enables multiple users to access your accounts. QuickBooks limits this to one to five users, depending on the plan, whereas FreshBooks doesn’t have a limit on how many users can access your account. But if you’re looking for a true accounting software, then QuickBooks is your best bet.

FreshBooks vs. QuickBooks: Comparing costs

FreshBooks vs. QuickBooks: Cost at a glance
FreshBooks QuickBooks Online
FreshBooks Lite: $15/month ($13.50/ month billed yearly)

FreshBooks Plus: $25/month ($22.50/ month billed yearly)

FreshBooks Premium: $50/ month ($45/month billed yearly)

FreshBooks Select: To find out pricing, you’ll need to get in touch with an account manager.

QuickBooks Online Self-Employed: $5/month for the first three months, $10 thereafter

QuickBooks Online Simple Start: $10/month for the first three months, $20 thereafter

QuickBooks Online Essentials: $17/month for the first three months, $35 thereafter

QuickBooks Online Plus: $30/month for the first three months, $60 thereafter

The bottom line

More small business owners are relying on cloud-based software like QuickBooks Online and FreshBooks to handle their payroll and accounting needs. Both of these products have offerings that are great for small business owners, but if you require something more than bookkeeping, then QuickBooks Online will be your best choice.

 

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