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A short article on my review of QuickBooks vs FreshBooks
I’ve been using QuickBooks for around 7-8 years to manage the accounts of a few of my side businesses.
However recently, I’ve been hearing a lot of noise around a new (not really new, but it was pretty new to me) cloud based accounting software called FreshBooks.
After trying it out for a week, I immediately switched from QuickBooks and moved all my accounts online to FreshBooks. Below is my review of FreshBooks after using it for a good few years.
Online Accounting Software Like QuickBooks
In the beginning of every small business, the greatest worry is its success. However when that success does come, many business owners find themselves overwhelmed with information and clients.
As far as smaller online businesses goes, there are two basic software packages used by business owners to do their accounting.
FreshBooks and QuickBooks have similar titles and are usually viewed as alternatives, however in some cases, this may not be true.
QuickBooks does bookkeeping and billing but it doesn’t entirely focus on tracking time or other features that log traffic.
It’s fairly easy to use for a single person, however it turns out that when most people work together on time tracking and payments, it turns into somewhat of a mess… okay a huge mess.
So it’s great in the beginning but as your business grows it’ll become more difficult to keep everything in check.
Its focus is bookkeeping, and most likely your accountant or bookkeeper uses it, if you have one that is. This is the main difference between the two popular choices of accounting software.
While FreshBooks is more adaptive and relies on automated patterns, some business owners may still cling onto QuickBooks on the side as it offers bookkeeping features and acts as a good “double-checker”
The advantages of FreshBooks
I’m going to dive right into it instead of fluffing around since I can’t get enough of bragging about this awesome software.
Custom login URL
This is a feature that I’m totally in love with. Once you signup, FreshBooks creates you a custom URL specific only to you so that only you can log in.
I’ve personally bookmarked the URL and use it whenever I need to send an invoice or add an expenditure.
FreshBooks also allows you to customize the dashboard according to the user. So you can create a custom dashboard that you see when you’ve logged in and you can select what your staff can see after they’ve logged in. Very useful if you don’t want some staff getting access to important data.
Heck, there’s even a section that allows you to manage what the client sees or can do.
Numerous Payment Gateways
Easier payment methods are available for your clients. As opposed to using the credit card each time, a client can receive the invoice at their portal. They can view their invoices, print etc. (If they’re into that), and do the payment online.
It’s really easy and fast to set up, it literally takes a minute, depending on your typing speed that is.
One of my businesses is service based, and most of my clients prefer to use PayPal due to its ease of use. This is one of the features that I’ve been scouring for initially when I was looking for alternatives. And when I found this integration on FreshBooks, it was a done-deal.
Managing and adding on tax can be a huge pain in the butt if you’re doing it individually for each client. But luckily FreshBooks makes it easy by automating it. This removes a huge burden during tax season, not to mention your accountant will love you too.
Yup, more customization
The amount of customization on this accounting software is pretty unbelievable. There’s tons of small tweaks you can make with the design that allow it to match the colors of your brand as close as possible.
Custom invoice design
FreshBooks gives you beautiful and clean invoice designs right out of the box. Once you’ve found one you like, you can edit it further and make more customizations.
Drastically increase your testimonials
I’ve made back the money I spent with FreshBooks in less than a month with just this little feature.
There’s 101 different things you need to juggle everyday as a business owner and there’s times you may forget to do things that will get you more clients or sales.
One of these things are testimonials.
Testimonials play a huge part in any business, but remembering to ask clients for testimonials can be a burden on itself.
FreshBooks has a great feature that automatically asks for a review or feedback during the payment process. This is probably the best time the client will likely to leave a testimonial since they’re already taking action with the payment.
Not only that, but FreshBooks won’t ask the same client again for another review more than once during a 6-month period.
Automated charges for late payments
Generally, it’s in human nature to delay payment on something they purchased for as long as possible.
For most business owners this is a necessary annoyance, however this is one that can be avoided with FreshBooks.
You can apply a certain percentage that will be charged to the client after a certain number of days have passed.
Say you want to charge a 6% late fee for each 25 days of delayed payment.
FreshBooks lets you list your invoice terms and sets them up to be automatically applied without having to think about it. People have to pay eventually but the fact that the price goes up slowly is certainly a good motivator to speed up payments.
Speaking of which, there’s another awesome feature that helps with the laziness of the client.
It’s not unheard of for people to have various excuses to avoid paying for additional fees such as the one where they say they never received the invoice or claim they just received the invoice.
It’s pretty easy for you to find out if the client really is having that problem as the cloud software tracks the time and date when you sent the invoice, as well as when the client opened and viewed it.
It’s definitely a good side kick feature, and it also brings that epic feeling you get when you caught someone red handed.
Reminders and other features
Another great advantage, FreshBooks lets you create up to three notices to be sent to your client on any day you want.
You can set up a notification to be sent after a week has passed, and others as time increases, leading up to the final one, which notifies of an additional fee for delayed payments.
Recurring invoicing hours of work and is one of the key features, you can also set dynamic variables that demand the least amount of work to be set up.
For example you can set up a recurring invoice that will adapt monthly to shorten the time you have to spend setting it up. I’ve found that this can save a lot of time with automated invoicing.
Many small business owners dread the thought of forgetting to send something to a client, and that’s just what this software focuses on.
If you like to know all the statistics of your business, FreshBooks offers loads of reports you can customize to fit your demands, if the basic ones aren’t enough for you that is.
This is a giant leap away from the competition as it’s a glove that fits everybody. Whether you’re a freelancer or a small business owner.
Manage expenses and claim tax deductions
Tax deductions are valid business expenses. By claiming tax deductions, you’re essentially reducing your taxable income and therefore you’ll be paying less tax.
However managing all of your expenses can be a huge pain.
FreshBooks makes this pretty easy and even fun to manage. They allow you to easily track your expenses with your phone by photographing your receipts and uploading it to their app; or you can manually input expenses.
Since my businesses are mostly web-based, I take a screenshot of all my expenses and slap them onto FreshBooks. Takes less than 60 seconds and both me and my accountant are stress-free during tax season.
You can click here to learn more about how to manage your expenses with FreshBooks.
Seriously good support
Another fascinating thing is that you can actually ask directly for help by making a call to the customer service and support, and they’ll actually help you.
It’s rather shocking as most other services offer an automated system that ends up giving you the basic “Have you tried turning it off and then switching it back on?“ advice.
It may be due to the fact that FreshBooks is a smaller business and can manage customer service this way. Either way, it’s a huge plus.
Meanwhile with QuickBooks being a larger company, they rely on automated services which prove to be less effective. In the end, although both choices are valid and serve a good purpose for your business, FreshBooks prevails.
Overall, I’ve found that FreshBooks is probably one of the best accounting software for small businesses out there when you’re trying to compare QuickBooks to FreshBooks.
It’s primarily a timekeeping and billing software. Its main purpose is bookkeeping but it also tracks and saves on time and expenses.
In a nutshell, FreshBooks in an automated software which is extremely easy to set up, be it to send customized invoices to your clients or making online payments.
It also tracks and automatically adds any expenses that are added to your clients and charges them for it, which I’ve found is a pretty neat feature.
FreshBooks is very user friendly and easy to use, and can probably adapt to any situation you find yourself in. There are several key advantages this software offers that elevates it above the competition.
I honestly hope that you give it a go if you haven’t done so already. They have a free signup plan, so if you don’t like it, you can stick with QuickBooks or use something else.
So if you’re looking for an accounts payable software, be sure to try them out as the FreshBooks pricing system is also pretty awesome too.
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Please note that this site is not affiliated with FreshBooks.com. I created the site because I use FreshBooks and have a lot of business partners that use other accounting software. Since I get asked why they should move to FreshBooks a lot, I decided to just create a site instead of explaining, with the hope that others will also find it useful. I also earn a small commission out of every sale, which pays for hosting costs.