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QuickBooks Online Training for Small Business Owners

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QuickBooks is a long-standing accounting software that has attracted users ranging from smaller entrepreneurs to larger enterprises. But this powerful tool isn’t without a learning curve, especially for new small business owners who are just learning to manage their books. Fortunately, there’s an abundance of QuickBooks online training resources to fit any price range and get you over the hump and back to business.

QuickBooks online training: 8 resources

The resources below can get you up to speed on everything you need to know about QuickBooks. These handy online trainings (and a few in-person sessions) are suited for both QuickBooks Online and QuickBooks Desktop users. The more in-depth, hands-on training programs do have a cost, but the listed free resources can provide quality assistance as well.

Training by QuickBooks

QuickBooks has created several ways for you to engage with its product, from full-on live instruction to free, online anytime learning.

1. Real World Training

Best for: Those who prefer structured learning or want to become a QuickBooks expert — class participants receive a voucher to take the Intuit QuickBooks Certified User (QBCU) test. (We’ll talk more about QuickBooks certification in a later section.)

Real World Training is the only company endorsed by QuickBooks parent Intuit to conduct classroom and live online training. However, in-person classes were temporarily suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic in May 2020, so check the website for updates.

Whether you’ve been using QuickBooks for five months or 15 years, Real World’s QuickBooks online courses teach the necessary foundations along with tips and tricks, as well as how to automate tasks, which will save you time. Plus, classes are tailored to both QuickBooks Desktop and QuickBooks Online users — you’ll select your class depending on which software you use.

Price: Tuition is $579.95. This includes two days of training, full access to your instructor for questions and answers and a 200-plus page manual that you can keep.

2. Webinars

Best for: Price-conscious beginners who want help with specific parts of the software.

QuickBooks offers free weekly webinars. You’ll need to register in advance and be online at set times, but there are opportunities to ask questions. In these sessions, experts may cover other specific QuickBooks products, such as payroll software. As of press time, there were seven upcoming classes, plus one pre-recorded session. Classes are typically later in the workday Eastern time, but you might have your choice of dates.

3. Self-paced courses

Best for: Beginner to intermediate users who want in-depth training on their own schedules.

QuickBooks has created self-paced courses for those who want the benefits of the Real World Training program, but also need flexibility. You may choose from a variety of on-demand classes which can be purchased individually or as a bundle. Like Real World Training’s sessions, courses are available for QuickBooks Desktop and QuickBooks Online users.

Price: $459.99 to $999.00, though discounts may be offered.

4. ProAdvisor

Best for: QuickBooks users with a beginner to immediate knowledge of their software who want outside help.

If you need one-on-one help or would like to hire someone to do your bookkeeping for you, a QuickBooks ProAdvisor may be a good fit. You can easily find a consultant to:

  • Oversee your accounting and bookkeeping
  • Manage your taxes and financial planning
  • Assist you with QuickBooks setup and consultation

Search based on your location by entering your city and state, then narrow your selection by your desired type of service, your industry and which type of QuickBooks software you prefer.

Price: ProAdvisors set their own rates, which will be determined by their level of experience and the services you request — as an example, you could expect to pay more for a certified public accountant (CPA) than you might for a bookkeeper.

QuickBooks ProAdvisor vs. QuickBooks Live

The ProAdvisor program allows you to determine the level of help you need from bookkeepers or CPAs in your area, but if you’re primarily interested in outsourcing your books, online, QuickBooks Live might be a better fit. QuickBooks Live consultants are also ProAdvisors; some are bookkeepers, while others are CPAs.

Price: Monthly subscriptions ranging from $25 to $600, though discounts may be offered.

5. QuickBooks on YouTube

Best for: Causal skill development those who want to learn QuickBooks as they go.

QuickBooks manages three channels on YouTube: QuickBooks, QuickBooks Desktop Mac and TSheets. The best resource for all things QuickBooks would be the broad channel.

With dozens of QuickBooks tutorial videos to sort through, you’ll need some patience, but you could find a solution to a unique issue you are facing. “Ask the Expert” is a live Q&A session, but topics wouldn’t necessarily be restricted to QuickBooks.

Resources outside of QuickBooks

6. LinkedIn Learning

Best for: Quick references for those with a beginning to intermediate understanding of QuickBooks.

LinkedIn Learning is a go-to space for QuickBooks online tutorials. The site offers 10 courses and more than 450 video tutorials, including those covering QuickBooks Payroll. Courses may carry a fee unless you have a subscription. The majority of videos are less than 10 minutes, making it easy for you to grasp a concept and move on. Levels are separated into beginner, intermediate and advanced.

Price: There are two ways to get access to LinkedIn Learning: You can sign up for a LinkedIn Learning subscription — either a monthly subscription of $29.99 or an annual subscription of about $240 — or become a Premium customer. As part of your Premium membership, you’ll have access to LinkedIn Learning courses. Premium Career is $29.99/month, while Premium Business is $59.99/month.

7. Udemy

Best for: Those already working with QuickBooks who want to know more.

Online learning platform Udemy offers more than 400 QuickBooks courses, including its bestselling “Mastering QuickBooks Online” for $44.99. The course includes four hours of on-demand video, access on mobile and TV and full lifetime access — plus, you also earn a certificate of completion. The course leverages QuickBooks’ 30-day free trial for those who do not already have an account. It walks you through the foundation of setting up your account, customizing your reports and finding transactions.

Price: Courses range in price. If you’re unsure whether a course is worth it, there are reviews for each one.

8. Community college

Best for: Learners who prefer in-person instruction.

It can be more difficult to find QuickBooks online training at community colleges, which specialize in technical education but have traditionally favored in-person learning — but that’s slowly changing. We found QuickBooks online classes at two Massachusetts community colleges, plus classes through one school’s corporate and professional education department. College registration requirements may be lenient, especially if you plan to take just a few credits, but possibly more complicated than signing up through QuickBooks or another online platform.

Price: Tuition costs vary, but may be equivalent to QuickBooks’ paid offerings.

How to get QuickBooks certified

Once you’ve taken a class (or two), you may be interested in becoming QuickBooks certified. Maybe you just want to deepen your knowledge or plan to launch an accounting or bookkeeping business.

As mentioned above, if you complete the Real World Training, you will be able to sit for the Intuit QuickBooks Certified User (QBCU) test free, a $149 value. If you want to become a ProAdvisor and have your new business listed on QuickBooks, keep in mind this is aimed at professional bookkeepers and accountants. There are several types of certification in the QuickBooks ProAdvisor program:

  • Desktop certification
  • Online certification
  • Point of sale certification
  • Enterprise solutions certification

Accountant University can prepare you for the exams that are necessary for each type.

FAQs about QuickBooks online training

How can I learn QuickBooks online for free?

It’s simple to find quality QuickBooks online training, free. QuickBooks’ YouTube channel has a host of videos to get you started, while its website contains free webinars.

How long does it take to learn QuickBooks online?

How long it takes depends on your skill level and which learning path you decide to take. The Real World Training takes two days, while other courses offered by QuickBooks, LinkedIn and Udemy can be done at your leisure.

What is the best way to learn QuickBooks online?

If QuickBooks is a program you use daily at your business, it’s our recommendation that you consider a paid class like the online or in-person Real World Training. It’s an investment, ensuring you get the most out of QuickBooks — plus, it could be written off as a business expense.


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