Accounting Software

Best Accounting Software include:

QuickBooks Desktop Enterprise, Xero, Sage Intacct, QuickBooks Desktop Pro, QuickBooks Online, Wave Accounting, and QuickBooks Desktop for Mac.

Accounting Software TrustMap

TrustMaps are two-dimensional charts that compare products based on trScore and research frequency by prospective buyers. Products must have 50 or more ratings to appear on this TrustMap.

Accounting Software Overview

What is Business Accounting Software?

Accounting Software records and processes accounting transactions and serves as an accounting information system from which decision makers or company accountants can monitor business processes and generate financial reports.


Their essential feature is an interactive financial dashboard with a general ledger for handling double-entry bookkeeping. Common features to this class of software include:


  • Means of tracking company inventory and purchase orders
  • Sales tracking
  • Automated invoicing
  • Receipt capture via document or image processing
  • Timekeeping
  • Analytics for budgeting and revenue tracking
  • Financial reporting
  • Accounts payable/accounts receivable functions.

These features are either contained intrinsically (within the accounting software) or managed via integration with third-party software(e.g. dedicated AR or AP software, Expense Management Software, Image Capture Software, etc.).


An automated ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) system contains all of these functions (or supports integration with the requisite modules), thus these products appear in this category as well. However ERPs are often industry specific or scaled to the needs of larger companies. They may represent overkill for seekers of pure and simplified accounting solutions for their business.


Some vendors offer specialized accounting software dedicated to handling the regulatory and reporting needs specific to some industries, like construction or manufacturing. Either an all-in-one solution or a package bundled with smaller, dedicated integratable modules could be the best approach, depending on business needs.

Small Business Accounting Software

Accounting & Budgeting Software offerings vary a great deal in complexity. Simple, inexpensive or free platforms are available for entrepreneurs and smaller companies, while medium-sized or larger companies may find use for more complex software possessing a greater breadth of features or deeper processing capacity and higher usage limit caps (like unlimited invoicing or the ability of a larger number of users to access the system).


Small businesses may also only require bookkeeping software, which focuses on recording financial transactions via a general ledger and managing payroll. Since bookkeeping tools are more simplistic, these products may be easier for simpler businesses without accounting experience to learn and use.


True SMB accounting software is distinguished by having better tools for financial data management, reporting, analytics, tax preparation, etc. SMB accounting tools have become increasingly affordable in recent years, making them the preferred choice for most businesses.


QuickBooks, FreshBooks, and Wave Accounting are some of the leading products suited to small business. QuickBooks requires training for new users, but it is convenient to use with an accountant and other financial services, because most providers in the space are already familiar with it. FreshBooks is a bit simpler and requires less training; Wave Accounting is free and aimed at businesses with fewer than 10 employees. When evaluating accounting tools, small businesses may want to pay particular attention to these areas:


  • Cost

  • Usability and training requirements

  • Efficiency

  • Scalability and limitations, including number of customers/invoices/users/transactions per month

  • Customer support

  • Support for tax preparation and filing

  • Reporting

  • Mobile functionality

  • CPA access (unless you manage your own finances)

  • Credit card processing, tax preparation, and payroll services

  • Integrations to third-party tools

Accounting Software Features & Capabilities

General ledger features make up the core of most accounting & budgeting platforms. Inventory, order, and payroll management features may be included as modules within the platform, or may be handled by third-party plug-ins; some of these features are industry specific.


Accounting tools also include reporting and customization/integration features (like dashboards and an API for custom integrations) that are common across many software categories. Additional capabilities are relevant for accounting firms who manage finances for multiple businesses.

General Ledger Features

The general ledger is a record of transactions and balances. These features comprise the basic bookkeeping functionality of the software:


  • Accounts payable and receivable

  • Cash management

  • Bank reconciliation

  • Expense management

  • Time tracking

  • Fixed asset management

  • Multi-currency and multi-division support

  • Regulations compliance

  • Electronic tax filing

  • Self-service portal

Inventory Management Features

These features give businesses the ability to track and manage the flow of goods or materials into and out of an inventory. They are relevant to industries with physical inventories, like retailers and suppliers. Inventory management functionality addresses:


  • Inventory tracking

  • Automatic reordering

  • Location management

  • Manufacturing module

Order Management Features

This feature set gives businesses the ability to process orders and track them from quote to cash. Order management is relevant to businesses that deal in services or goods and materials. For example, eCommerce retail vendors need to manage product orders and pool maintenance companies need to manage work orders. Basic order management features are:


  • Pricing

  • Order entry

  • Credit card processing

  • Calculating cost of goods sold

Payroll Management Features

Payroll management features are relevant for handling the costs and money flow associated with a company's workforce. These may be more or less sophisticated depending on the scale of the business and the type of employees (e.g. full time, part time, contractors, etc). Payroll management features include:


  • Pay calculation

  • Benefit plan administration

  • Direct deposit files

  • Salary revision and increment management

  • Reimbursement management

Accounting Firm Features

These features are relevant to accounting firms using the product on behalf of clients:


  • Branded dashboards, with a unique view for each client with the accounting form name and logo displayed

  • Client roll-up capabilities that allow users to aggregate data for multiple entities within one client (e.g. data for all convenience stores within a certain zip code)

  • Data consolidation across clients within a vertical market to provide a benchmark for performance measurement/comparison

  • Configurable alerts for overdue forms and materials

  • Billing bypass options (software vendor bills firm; firm bills clients)

  • Client template cloning for setup, report format, and dashboards

  • Single sign-on for access to all customer accounts

  • Configurable client onboarding questions

  • Cross-client workflow management

  • Industry-specific versioning

  • Legacy system data migration

Accounting Software Comparison

To compare different accounting platforms, consider the scale of unique accounting tools your business will need. Most accounting solutions will include standard accounting capabilities like General Ledger (GL), Accounts Payable and Accounts Receivable (AP/AR), bank reconciliation, fixed asset management, expense tracking, invoicing capabilities, and financial reporting capabilities.

Some businesses will need additional features like inventory management, payroll capabilities, dedicated budgeting features, and cash flow analysis. Smaller businesses may only need simple bookkeeping capabilities, and can forego the more advanced reporting, inventory management, and other capabilities. Some companies may require a comprehensive ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) system, rather than a solution that focuses exclusively on accounting.

Even though many businesses have a unique set of functionality requirements, there are a few accounting ‘must-have’ criteria that a majority of buyers agree on. Common comparison points for buyers include:


  1. Intuitive, easy-to-use UI:

  2. Third-party integrations

  3. Robust reporting capabilities

  4. Cloud-based software

  5. Invoicing capabilities

Start an Accounting comparison

Pricing Information

Accounting software is most frequently offered on a subscription or perpetual license basis, particularly for online software. For very small use cases, some software is offered on a 1-purchase basis. For small businesses, subscriptions are available for less than $100/month. However, pricing can increase and vary more as buyers' accounting needs scale in size and complexity. Products for larger organizations may be priced by the modules selected within the product, required integrations, or number of transactions or users.

For large businesses and enterprises, accounting capabilities are frequently included with Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) products. These platforms can be much more expensive than standalone accounting software. ERPs can also provide additional capabilities that may be more efficient to bundle with accounting processes if a businesses needs both products.



More Resources

Accounting Products

(1-25 of 122) Sorted by Most Reviews

Saasu
Saasu is an online, internationally known accounting platform from the Australian company of the same name. Besides a GL, Saasu also handles invoicing with quotes and billing reminders and alerts, and multiple currencies. It includes a customer database which connects to a user's CRM (Salesforce.com…
BeansBooks
BeansBooks is a simple cloud-based or local accounting from System76 in Denver. It is open code; the software can be downloaded, installed, and modified for free. It contains the basic features of accounting software.
FUTRLI
FUTRLI (formerly CrunchBoards) is financial reporting tool that pulls accounting data from Xero and produces reports such as P&L, cashflow, forecasting and alerts. The company is based in Brighton and was founded in 2014.
NumberCruncher
NumberCruncher is an inventory management software offering from NumberCruncher.com, Inc. It includes features such as granular inventory visibility and reducing recall loss with serial and lot.
Twinfield
Twinfield is cloud-based accounting software from Wolters Kluwer.
Computron
Computron’s enterprise financials is a platform to help medium to large organizations manage all their accounting and business management processes efficiently and securely within their regulated environments. It is now owned and supported by Avolin since Aptean's 2018 divestiture.
inDinero
inDinero is an accounting platform with integrated full-service payroll, from the company of the same name in San Francisco, California.
AccountsIQ-Cloud Accounting Software
AccountsIQ provides a cloud-based accounting solution that is designed to provide users with access to the applications from anywhere in the world. The solution can be used on any internet connected device (with appropriate security and permissions). With this solution, users can facilitate simult…
Standard Accounts
HansaWorld Standard Accounts provides users with tools to manage business finances. Users can take care of invoicing and bookkeeping while accessing comprehensive business reports to analyze financial progress. Whether at the office, home, or on the go, Standard Accounts gives users the ability to r…
FastFund Online
FastFund Online is an SaaS system that seamlessly integrates nonprofit, fund accounting, fund raising (CRM) and payroll in a single solution. The vendor says FastFund Online is designed to help nonprofits take control of their fiscal and development responsibilities in order to be more accountable t…
FMIS Asset Management
FMIS Asset Management is a full lifecycle asset management solution. The system is ideally suited to medium or large companies across a range of sectors including Oil & Gas, Commercial, Manufacturing, Engineering, Healthcare and Government. FMIS Fixed Assets is designed to give finance teams th…
InvoiceBerry
InvoiceBerry offers a simple and secure online invoicing software for freelancers and small businesses. InvoiceBerry users can choose between 15 different invoice template designs when setting up their account. Once set up, businesses can add their company items and services as well as their custome…
pcLegal
Performance Canvas' pcLegal targets mid-sized to large organizations that want a more unified and Excel-based approach to financial budgeting and planning, modeling, dashboards, profitability analysis, KPI setting, performance reporting, and advanced consolidation. It supports both on premise, host…
Versa Cloud ERP
Versa Cloud ERP is presented as a solution for businesses that have outgrown Excel spreadsheets and old software, and are looking for software that eliminates post-it notes and spreadsheets.Versa is an all-in-one software created for fast growing inventory heavy manufacturing, distribution, and e-co…
TruckMate
TruckMate from TMW Systems is accounting, dispatch, and operations software for the trucking industry.
Flexi Software
Flexi Software is a suite of feature-rich accounting solutions that can scale to handle millions of transactions, yet remain flexible enough to meet the requirements of any size company in any industry, including Banking, Healthcare, Insurance, and Credit Unions. From general ledger and accounts pay…
ReportFYI
ReportFYI is designed to increase productivity through a smart and dynamic design that streamlines the report generation process end to end. The vendor says this solution is ideal for CFOs, accountants, and companies of any size. The vendor’s value proposition is that their report writer is secure…
CloudFYI
CloudFYI is a comprehensive, cloud-based financial reporting and analysis solution that is designed to streamline the design, integration, and distribution of corporate financial information. The vendor aims to help managers and decision-makers spend less time preparing and verifying financial figur…
CurrencyFYI
CurrencyFYI is a currency translation solution with currency restatement and consolidated financial reporting for multi-national organizations. The vendor’s value proposition is that CurrencyFYI provides daily revaluation for better insight, including the ability to truly revalue historical transact…
Scipio ERP
Scipio ERP is an open source enterprise resource planning (ERP) and eCommerce system. Compared to its direct competitors, the software can be seen as a very modern, yet inexpensive alternative. Scipio ERP comes bundled with rich business applications and is best suited for mid- to large size compani…
Questica Budget
The Questica suite of products are part of a comprehensive web-based budgeting preparation, performance, management and data visualization solution that enables public sector and non-profit organizations to improve and shorten their budgeting cycles. Questica Budget is a fully featured, multi-user …
Questica Performance
Questica Performance captures key measures and provides dynamic analytic tools to evaluate and improve the effectiveness and efficiency of programs and services. It integrates with Questica Budget, and can be deployed as a web-based tool, on-premise, or cloud. The Questica suite of products are part…
Questica OpenBook
Questica OpenBook is a transparency and data visualization tool that enables organizations to share and communicate their financials and other data, when and where they need to. Additionally, OpenBook Project Explorer for Capital Budgets allows organizations to display on an interactive map every in…
SAP Financial Statement Insights
SAP Financial Statement Insights is an analytics platform for financial professionals, allowing the user to locate hidden trends or details and provide clear finance and budget reports ad hoc and in real-time.
Klientscape Quick Accounts
Klientscape Quick Accounts is easy-to-use accounting software for everyday accounting needs. According to the vendor, it is light-weight, requires very little training with an interactive UI. It comes with a customisable dashboard where your profit/loss, budget/actual, total sales/ purchase/ stock c…

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best accounting software for small businesses?

The best accounting software for small businesses will focus on being easy to use, simple, and be low-cost. QuickBooks, FreshBooks, and Wave Accounting are leaders in small business accounting software.

What is accounting software?

Accounting software documents financial transactions and makes the data accessible for reporting, planning, and tax preparation. It can also serve as a centralized source of financial and inventory information.

What is the best accounting software for accountants?

Many accountants prize software that’s easy for clients to learn, has broader features or 3rd party integrations to support a wide range of client industries, and robust reporting capabilities. Vendors that focus on software for accountants include Xero, QuickBooks, and Sage.

Is Excel an accounting software

No. While Excel has the data recording and management capabilities to track your finances, it lacks most prebuilt features that are found across true accounting features, such as invoicing, prebuilt reporting, and receipt management.

Do I need an accounting software for my small business?

Yes. Using an accounting software, even an entry-level free software, can save you time, labor, and income through their pre-built features and capabilities designed for accounting functions.