There are numerous options, free, low-cost and pricey, that you can choose for bookkeeping. The trick is knowing exactly what you need. You may only need to keep track of income and expenses, or you may need to track 1099 contractors or employees - in which case you need to keep track of payroll. Maybe you have inventory that needs to be tracked too for tax purposes, and it is good practice to do that continuously anyway.
Let’s look at a few options. But remember, your tax professional is the best person to talk to about your needs. They may not be keen on using some of the free offerings, but you can show it to them to find out what they think.
* Zoho Books – Zoho offers many different products at a good price for small and large businesses. It supports collaboration, integrates with many other business apps, and automates booking entries with your bank accounts and credit cards. Not to mention all the other Zoho products you can use, such as help desk and more.
Link - https://www.zoho.com/books/
* SAGE 50 Cloud – This is cloud software that works as if it’s native on your desktop. What’s great about that is the fact that it’s more secure and will be updated all the time for your monthly fee. You can send invoices and it integrates with Microsoft Office 365, plus reconciles bank accounts. It has many industry-specific features, native reports and custom reports, and amazing security.
Link - https://www.sage.com/en-us/cp/sage-50cloud-accounting/
* Go Daddy Bookkeeping – This is really something only small "mom and pop" sole proprietors should use, but it’s a good solution if all you want to track is what comes in and what goes out of your bank account. It’s inexpensive too. It does have added features like invoicing with automation through your bank account and PayPal. You can also print a schedule C and know what your quarterly taxes should be at a glance. But, because you can delete entries easily, it’s not really a complaint accounting software and most accountants would hate it.
Link - http://www.godaddy.com/bookkeeping
* FreeAgent – This software offers estimates, invoices, ability to upload receipts by snapping a photo, connects to your banking, projects, time tracking, and so much more. This is great software for a freelancer and small business owner who provides services. It’s inexpensive, in the cloud, and works great. What’s more is that it works well enough that accountants like it too.
Link - https://www.freeagent.com/
* QuickBooks – This software is made for business. You can get all sorts of levels of QuickBooks, from small businesses to larger businesses. It’s always compliant, can be used in the cloud or natively on your system, and this is what most accountants and bookkeepers are families with and like to use. It does everything you expect and more, from reports, to automated booking of entries, to integrating with various accounts.
Link - http://www.quickbooks.com/Official/QuickBooks
One of the number one rules for keeping your business finances balanced is to keep your business and personal finances separate. But, do you really understand why? We’ll go into detail about that next time.