As cloud computing gains in popularity, the availability of online accounting software continues to grow. Many small business owners want software that has an intuitive and easy-to-use interface that allows them to bill customers, enter expenses and check their bank balances
We also want to be able to access from anywhere (you never know when the desire to do your accounting, strikes!). In this article, I have described the most cost-effective, multi-functional alternatives.
The basic version, at $9.95 per month, provides you will the ability to track your invoices and expenses, including sales taxes, and to see where you stand with respect to your payables and receivables. It also allows you to customize and create invoices and provides many reporting options.
You can manage your account from either a Windows or Mac platform as well as your iPhone and BlackBerry. Only one user can log on at a time (+ your accountant). There are no limits on the number of customers or transactions.
Although the company is based in New Zealand, small businesses anywhere can use the software. The functionality is similar to Quickbooks except that the plan price differential is much smaller with Xero.
The small plan at $19 a month allows for 5 customer and vendor transactions and 20 bank transactions per month which could be problematic for anyone who has more than 5 clients or customers.
The medium and large plans at $29 and $39 per month, by comparison, allow for unlimited transactions. Also, unlike Quickbooks, Xero allows unlimited users for all its plans and offers a multicurrency feature.