QuickBooks Pricing: Features, Costs and Top Accounting Software Alternatives

QuickBooks is an accounting software designed for a wide range of independent contractors and businesses. It offers both cloud-hosted and on-premise solutions, designed to help simplify taxes, payroll and deductions. QuickBooks automatically syncs with your bank and credit card accounts, sends and tracks invoices, runs reports and more.

How Much is QuickBooks?

QuickBooks offers tiered pricing options for both its Online (cloud-hosted) and Desktop (on-premise) solutions. Here are the pricing differences for each:

QuickBooks Online Plans

Self-Employed – $15/month. With this plan, you can:

  • Track income and expenses
  • Track miles
  • Send invoices
  • Maximize Schedule C deductions
  • Automatically calculate estimated quarterly taxes
  • Capture and organize receipts
  • Run basic reports

Simple Start – $25/month. With this plan, you can:

  • Maximize tax deductions
  • Invoice and accept payments
  • Send estimates
  • Manage 1099 contracts
  • Track sales and sales tax

Essentials – $40/month. This plan adds on:

  • Everything from the Simple Start plan
  • Bill payments
  • Tracking time
  • Up to three users

Plus – $70/month. This plan includes:

  • Everything from the Essentials plan
  • Track project profitability
  • Track inventory
  • Up to five users

Advanced – $150/month. This plan includes:

  • Everything from the Essentials plan
  • Business intelligence
  • Batch invoicing
  • Automated workflows
  • The ability to restore company data
  • Custom user permissions
  • Dedicated account team
  • On-demand online training
  • Up to 25 users

Note that each plan is the original subscription price as QuickBooks offers a 50% discount for the first three months. All plans include receipt capture, expert support and app integration.

You can also add Payroll Core for $22.50 per month (for first three months) and an additional $4 per employee, per month, Payroll Premium for $37.50 per month (for first three months) and an additional $8 per employee, per month or Payroll Elite for $62.50 per month (for first three months) and an additional $10 per employee, per month.

QuickBooks Desktop Plans

Pro Plus 2021 – $299.99/year (subscription license)

  • Everything from the Pro 2021 plan
  • Unlimited support 24/7
  • Automated data backup
  • Easy software upgrades

Premier Plus 2021 – $499.99 (subscription license)

  • Industry-specific reports
  • Forecasting

Enterprise  – $1,275 (subscription license; discount for the first year)

  • Ability to scale from one to 40 users with permissions
  • Advanced inventory management
  • Sales orders fulfillment
  • VIP Priority Circle premium support that includes access to dedicated Customer Support Manager, quick resolutions to issues and the ability to train up to five employees on QuickBooks

Top Alternatives to QuickBooks

QuickBooks is one of the most popular and well-known accounting tools. However, this doesn’t mean it’s the best choice for every business. Here are a few alternatives and how they stack up in terms of pricing and features.

Zoho Books: Zoho Books is an accounting software made for freelancers and small businesses across various industries. It offers three price plans with similar pricing to QuickBooks: Basic, Standard and Professional. The Basic plan is $9/month and includes 50 contacts, accountant access and 5 automated workflows. You can send custom invoices, automatically reconcile your bank accounts, track expenses and create projects and time sheets.

Zoho Books’ most popular option is its Standard plan. It’s $19/month and allows two users plus an accountant, up to 500 contacts and 10 automated workflows. This plan also includes bill organization, vendor credits and reporting tags.

The Professional Plan is $29/month and includes unlimited contacts, 10 users and 10 automated workflows, as well as additional features like inventory management and a custom domain.

Wave: Wave is a 100% free accounting software made for independent contractors and small businesses. This includes invoicing software, accounting software and receipt scanning. Wave lets you send and track invoices, manage expenses, and balance your books. You can also automatically connect to your bank accounts.

Wave does charge extra for its payroll service. In certain states (CA, FL, NY, TX, IL, WA), the fee is $35 plus an additional $4/employee/month. This includes tax service and automatic tax payments and filings. For all other states, Wave charges $20 plus an additional $4/employee/month for the payroll service. The tax service and automatic tax payment and filings aren’t included in this fee.

Sage 100c: Sage 100c is an accounting software made for larger businesses to assist in keeping track of accounting, manufacturing, distribution and inventory management. It was designed predominantly with manufacturers, distributors and retailers in mind.

Sage 100c lets you plan a budget, reconcile your books and automate invoices, along with 24/7 assistance and available training and certifications. Since this product is created for larger businesses, its pricing information is available only by asking for a quote.

Bottom Line

Wave is one of the best-priced options on the market. However, it doesn’t feature charting or customizable reporting tools that are useful for sharing your information with accountants or business partners. Zoho Books’ pricing is comparable to QuickBooks and offers numerous integrations and features that make it a great choice. However, Zoho Books doesn’t host a native payroll feature, which can be important to businesses wanting to streamline their payroll tasks.

Sage 100c is a great choice for large businesses, yet it doesn’t have the community that QuickBooks has. QuickBooks is the preferred software of millions of accountants and businesses because of its accessible pricing and various features.

Before purchasing a product, organizations should evaluate each tool to decide which best fits their needs.

If you’re looking for software alternatives, our detailed reviews is a good place to start.