Why I Use QuickBooks

A little while ago, I wrote an article extolling the virtues of the QuickBooks sales staff and customer relationship management processes. The end of the story, though, is that I ended up with a copy of QuickBooks for managing my business’ finances.

When I posted that fact on Twitter, I was asked by various people why I chose QuickBooks over a much more cost-effective solution such as Freshbooks. A fair question, considering that as an advocate of start-ups and their projects, I would normally choose to support their efforts, especially if it would save me money. QuickBooks, at least the version I purchased, cost me almost $200, while Freshbooks starts at free for limited use, and would take me quite a while to get to $200 in fees.

Additionally, I’ve used Freshbooks before, when a vendor sent me an invoice using their system, and a client requested online payments, which I chose to run through their interface. As such, I do have some familiarity with the product, while my exposure to QuickBooks at the time was extremely limited.

However, I still chose to go with the commercial product for a few reasons:

  1. The product is complete in terms of managing my business’ finances. From quoting to billing to managing accounts payable, the software can handle it. If I choose to expand, I can add a module to handle payroll. Taxes are automatically computed, and I can file those returns directly from the program.
  2. My accounting firm integrates fully with QuickBooks. They have me email them a file on a quarterly basis, they make sure there are no major corrections to be done, they import it into their system, and they can cut the amount of time needed to handle my file. For any company which makes use of an accountant for managing their finances, using proper programs which integrate well becomes important.

That’s not to say that I wouldn’t advocate Freshbooks. I believe that the product is well designed and constantly improving. Perhaps eventually it will be a full-fledged accounting system that would integrate with other programs properly. Perhaps your company doesn’t require any of the other features of a program like QuickBooks. If such is the case, I definitely recommend at least taking a look at Freshbooks.

As for me, I’ll stick to QuickBooks for as long as it serves my needs well. Should it fail to do so at some point in the future, my first fall-back will be to take another look at Freshbooks.