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Choosing the Right QuickBooks Program

Of all the financial management software on the market, QuickBooks is consistently ranked among the most popular. The sheer range of QuickBooks programs provides an edge over the competition. That range is one of the best features for customers, who can choose software with specific functions and abilities tailored to suit their type of business. The downside of this variety, of course, is that small business owners may struggle choosing between all the available programs. How can you tell a specific QuickBooks program is the right program for your business? There’s a lot to consider, and as QuickBooks continues to develop new options, the decision is not becoming any easier.

QuickBooks Pro

Perhaps QuickBooks’ most popular program, QuickBooks Pro is the simplest option currently available. Those who run a new business are unlikely to know what kinds of special features would most benefit them. In these cases, going simple is the best choice. QuickBooks Pro allows users to perform basic tasks, such as tracking income and expenses, but also provides links in invoices to speed payments, compiles lists of top customers, and generates estimates to keep you up to speed. For an additional fee, you can get twenty-four hour access to customer support, regular back-ups to protect your data, and all future updates. Still, it is the most basic form of QuickBooks, and it’s a good place to start if you’ve never used bookkeeping software before.

QuickBooks Premier

QuickBooks Premier comes with more bells and whistles than Pro, but those features are very useful for a developing business. For example, freelancers and contractors can use QuickBooks Premier to bill clients progressively for work in development, for labor and materials, or by prearranged phases of development. The program provides flexibility to suit your business and your current project. In fact, the entire program is customizable for contractors, retailers, manufacturers, nonprofits, and professional services. This allows a business owner to take effortless advantage of special features designed for their type of business. Premier does a lot of your work, even your specialized work, for you. It can boost profitability quickly, and keeps you impeccably organized.

QuickBooks Enterprise

QuickBooks Enterprise is Intuit’s’ most flexible accounting software. It contains more room for storage, allows room for more individual users, and includes everything you will need to process and protect your business from beginning to end. It manages reordering, generates reports on nearly anything you could dream of, and still features the industry-specific advantages of Premier. QuickBooks Enterprise removes a lot of busywork from your schedule by sending payments through to your bank and automatically processing a lot of day-to-day functions, shaving precious minutes and hours off of your work day.

Desktop Vs. Online

One of QuickBooks’ latest features is the option to purchase their programs as a SaaS (software as a service) product. This allows users to essentially, rent QuickBooks by the month, which can be much cheaper than installing traditional software, especially for businesses with more than one computer. QuickBooks’ Online services also come with a variety of features traditional software can’t provide, such as a seamless use across multiple devices, including PCs, laptops, mobile phones, and tablets.

Buying QuickBooks Online has advantages for those who don’t know what functions they need. While even the cheapest traditional QuickBooks software costs over one hundred dollars, renting can cost as little as ten dollars per month. Since there is no long term commitment, small business owners can experiment with different programs without breaking the bank. Even better, there are different SaaS products available, so once you’ve found the right fit, you can invest in a version with more perks and options to optimize your business’s performance. Because SaaS software is able to grow with your business, you can continue using your ideal software match indefinitely, because you will never out-grow it.

Getting the Most Out of QuickBooks

While several upgrades provide unlimited QuickBooks support, many unofficial providers offer excellent support at a lower price. Support alone probably isn’t a worthwhile reason to upgrade your software package from QuickBooks.

While everyone needs help from time to time, finding good QuickBooks training will limit your need for support in the future. Regardless of the program you choose, it’s very important to find QuickBooks training, especially if you haven’t used bookkeeping software in the past. How do you find the best training, though? Highly reviewed third parties are usually the best options. Third parties can give you more than just the basics of QuickBooks. They can provide insight into the program’s potential weaknesses and demonstrate practical advantages the developers may not have considered.

The variety of QuickBooks programs available essentially guarantees there is a compatible program for every kind of business, but you need to know what you need before you make a choice. How much help do you need? Do you even know if you need special features yet? Do you use multiple devices to run your business? These are all critical to your decision. Remember, if you aren’t sure what you need yet, you can start off by renting software. You may find that SaaS software works best for you in the long run, and the best QuickBooks support may not come from an official help button.

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About Marjorie Adams

Our head QuickBooks trainer and guru, Marjorie Adams, is Founder and CEO of Fourlane, Inc., an award-winning consulting firm and Intuit’s #1 QuickBooks Reseller Partner. Fourlane’s team of experts offers several QuickBooks oriented services including consulting, training, programming, integration, and more. Over the years, Fourlane has helped over 10,000 customers across many different industries with their QuickBooks accounting software. Marjorie Adams is considered one of the top QuickBooks trainers in the country. She was listed on CPA Practice Advisor’s 40 Under 40 in 2014 & 2015, and has been recognized as Intuitive Accountant’s 2015 QuickBooks Desktop ProAdvisor of the Year. Marjorie sits on Intuit’s VIP Program, is a frequent contributor to Inuit Accountants News Central, and has developed Intuit’s QuickBooks Enterprise Certification training. She has also been published in The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, BusinessWeek, American Express Open, the Huffington Post, and Inc. Magazine.

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