Finance · 2 April 2021

What is the best accounting software for small business?

What is the best accounting software for small business?

You are a prudent entrepreneur with big dreams, and to achieve these dreams, you are adamant that you are not going to run your business finance in manual books or excel. You want it digital, simple, scalable and able to supply you with strategic information easily.

Having accounting software makes your business administration exponentially faster and more efficient.

What accounting software should I use for small business?

Accounting software used to be large, labour-intensive behemoths for heavy headcount companies. Part of the industry chose to broaden its focus to include smaller businesses. There are many options now with various offerings, some with large price points and various operating specifications.

Now you need to decide which one will suit you, which may require extensive time commitment and comparisons. In this article, we help you speed up that process of choosing by reviewing a shortlist of options with different specifications, complexities and price points.

Online accounting software is the future of SME business accounting. This structure (mostly internet-based) makes it highly compatible with all sorts of hardware: desktop, MAC or laptop. Many also work superbly with tablets and mobiles.

What is the easiest accounting software for small business?


This can be a costly option coming at approximately £800 to purchase but they do have a variety of pricing options. It is worth every penny.  Mac and Windows versions can be bought at an upfront cost, but there is also a subscription-based version on the cloud. There are fewer features available for Mac.

There is also a time investment needed as it is a bit complicated to use, but there are a plethora of tutorials online due to its significant popularity. Regular updates keep its appeal.

It does offer a free trial period but be aware that the costs can escalate. One other “disadvantage” is the overwhelming quantity of options.

UK users have additional tools, such as the income tax estimator tool. QuickBooks also has an edition that will suit any kind of user, making edition selection challenging.

It has payroll, mobile payment services and point of sale packages. Its beefier features include business analytics and insights, customised access by role, a restore company data function and automated workflows. A dedicated account manager is part of the deal, plus on-demand online training. Now you know why it’s popular.


This was developed from the beginning as cloud-based software. It’s great for Macs and has over 600 features to perform simple or complex accounting tasks easily.

Uniquely it tracks costs, ring-fenced per project. You can also add an unlimited number of users regardless of which package you have chosen. It has some very advanced, market-leading features, making it a better fit for medium and large businesses but has 2, 000, 000 single users (and 16, 000 firms).

It is a bit complex to use, and the UK market has reported customer support problems.

Xero is very robust, can handle complex accounting, is scalable, has ample reports and boasts 700 integrations.

Xero also scores fantastically when it comes to adapting to the modern world. In that sense, for example, it’s one of the few who offer a version of their app adapted for the Apple Watch. Therefore, you don’t have to worry about anything. You can access it no matter what device you own, as long as you have a stable internet connection.

The plans presented on the platform have almost every feature you could think of. This is what makes Xero so good for small and medium businesses. All your accounting can be taken care of in one place, which brings us to this.


Zoho-books-accounting-software Zoho is perfect for smaller size companies that do not have many complex accounting tasks. It’s very easy to navigate and is a very helpful tool when it comes to organising payments. Alongside basic financial tools such as financial statements and manual dashboard entry, it also provides a notification system that notifies you if a client has missed payment upon the agreed terms.

This is an easy-to-use, cheaper option for startups and any new business to use for bookkeeping and all your online accounting needs.


Most of these great software features are free and uniquely facilitate tracking personal and business transactions in one software! This makes finance management so much more efficient. It is fundamental, which is why it’s the perfect option for a very small business! Its lack of complex features suits its target market of companies with simpler business models.

Some features, such as payments and payroll, require paid use for them.

It allows double-entry accounting, has excellent invoicing and transaction management, can pre-authorise recurring credit card payments, has a great user interface and navigation tools, supports multiple currencies and does instant payouts.

The record templates are very simple, and the invoice customisation is limited. You can’t offer discounts, and there isn’t dedicated time-tracking. Receipts are unavailable on Android, and payroll, when paid for, is very simple.

It is very suitable for freelancers with simple transactions.


This is another simple software but with good tracking, invoicing and payments and is cloud-based. Before you sign on to the monthly subscription, there is a 30-day free trial that you can use to test things out.

PCMag (UK) commented that it “anticipates the needs of freelancers and smaller businesses…better than its competitors”. It is a well-rounded solution and has an attractive double-entry accounting experience. It has an easy to operate invoicing and estimating solution; it handles expenses, time tracking and projects.

The user experience is very, very good. The client records are detailed, and it supports team collaboration and retainer functionality. It has inventory tracking and automatic mileage tracking on iOS.

There is, unfortunately, minimal setup help and some reviews refer to dashboard deficits and limited invoice customisation. Its mobile app lacks some features, and there are also no quarterly tax estimates.

GoDaddy Bookkeeping:

GoDaddy expanded its focus from web hosting to online bookkeeping, and both are suitable for small businesses. Perhaps the accounting software draws the attention of the small business owners to the web hosting services.

Interestingly it might be too simple for small businesses! It is a cheaper option for self-employed individuals and is similar to FreshBooks – with a slight twist. It integrates brilliantly to online platforms (e.g. Shopify and Etsy), tracking payments and invoices easily.

A great option for freelancers as well.


17hats is fully integrated, tracking everything you do with your business. The easy access calendars, accounting AND CRM modules also come with to-do lists and lots of other efficiencies.

It’s a breeze to create new leads and facilitates instant responses to customer queries!

It also provides facilities for immediate payments. The invoice templates allow you to create very attractive and professional invoices. There is also a contract customising facility (per client), AND you can sign the deal online.

It sends automatic payment reminders to customers and allows credit card payment processing.