Xero vs MYOB vs Quickbooks: What Do I Choose?
As a business owner eager to manage your money, you’ve probably heard of all the different bookkeeping programs on the market.
If you’ve decided that now is the time to invest in an accounting software to keep your finances in order, that’s great – power to you.
But the problem is this: there are just so many of them.
Xero, MYOB and QuickBooks – three of the most prevalent software programs everyone’s using right now. How could you possibly choose between them? Don’t they just do all the same thing? What’s actually the difference between them? Will one of them really help your business more so than the other?
The answer to that question is yes.
As bookkeeping specialists, we’ve used all three of these programs extensively and know which software works best for businesses – no matter if your operations are large or small.
Below, we’ll outline the competition between Xero, MYOB and QuickBooks – and tell you which one wins.
Xero is without a doubt one of the most popular and easy-to-use accounting programs in the history of bookkeeping. It’s often heralded as the ‘accountant’s tool for non-accountants’ and boasts over 1 million subscribers globally.
Entering into the Australian market in 2008, the system is easily navigable, contains a wide range of excellent features and can easily integrate with your existing tools (including – importantly – your bank account)! It provides a wide range of customisable options for you, allowing you to pretty much track any report you need for your business (no matter its size).
It’s also one of the very small number of tools on the market that features complete cycle payroll processing for up to 5 employees at no added cost. It further allows you to process payroll checks, file your payroll tax forms and also submit payments of your payroll taxes (unlike Xero’s most fierce competitor, Quickbooks).
We also really love Xero because of its open Application Programming Interface (API). This means you’re able to integrate Xero with other pieces of software – but if you can’t, Xero will allow your web developer to integrate it for you.
(Always read Xero’s terms and conditions before making the decision to buy)
There are also two great add-ons you can add to your plans including:
- Claim expenses (where you can take photos of receipts, reimburse expenses and monitor your staff’s spending)
- Track projects (where you can estimate quotes, track your time and send customised invoices)
Learn more about Xero’s pricing options here.
MYOB is older than Xero, founded in the early 1980s, and is now a global leader in bookkeeping software.
It now even boasts a cloud-based option and offers different packages tailored to sole traders, SMEs and large companies. (Although, due to limited MYOB cloud integrations, we find that the traditional desktop version is probably the better option overall.)
You’ll get everything you need for your accounting with MYOB (an acronym standing for ‘Mind Your Own Business’) ranging from budgeting and payroll to project management. It’s also a Microsoft Gold Certified Partner, meaning it integrates seamlessly with most of your traditional Microsoft products.
The program even features a nifty mobile dongle – you can actually plug it into your smartphone and use it to make EFTPOS payments (and receive credit card payments).
Purchasing MYOB also means you’ll get a free 30-day trial (other than with the Essentials Payroll package).
(Always read MYOB’s terms and conditions before making the decision to buy)
Also, two great additions to MYOB that your business can take advantage of include:
- The MYOB App Marketplace, which you can use to gain access to over 300 third party apps; and
- MYOB Kounta, which is a point-of-sale based in the cloud that’s really good if you’re running a physical business or are a travelling business.
Learn more about MYOB’s pricing options here.
Quickbooks is an internationally renowned U.S.-headquartered accounting software that’s been in the finance game since the 1980s, beginning first as a desktop program but now offers QuickBooks Online – its cloud-based creation.
QuickBooks Online offers everything you need to get your business accounting sorted – project management, inventory management, payroll, invoicing, integrations (with platforms like Shopify and PayPal) and over 600 apps.
The problem we have with QuickBooks is that it isn’t that customisable. It’s generic. That means you’ll get a whole range of interesting features that your business simply won’t ever use.
It’s not very friendly to those who are new to accounting software (and a little intimidating for those businessowners who have zero accounting experience).
If you use QuickBooks, you may even need to engage an independent expert just to help you work out the basics. So, unlike with Xero, you won’t be treated to a clean and easy navigable flow.
That being said, if you’re an experienced accountant, you’ll know QuickBooks like the back of your hand (and you’ll find that it gets the job done).
Xero vs MYOB vs Quickbooks: Which program is best?
Xero – hands down.
While all three pieces of software have their advantages and disadvantages, Xero stands out from the crowd as having the most striking features while simultaneously offering the most user-friendly and easily navigable platform.
Think of Xero like an iPhone or an Android, whereas MYOB and Quickbooks are more like those old flip phones you used to own. They technically perform very similar (if not the same) functions, but modern smartphones are much easier (and pleasant) to use.
And when you’re running a business, you don’t want to be figuring out complex accounting features that requires a tertiary education to understand. You want simplicity, efficiency and predictability.
Xero is affordable, features excellent automation and has an expansive (but not bloated) plugin library. It features unlimited user limits, but also has an incredibly easy interface.
As the go-to bookkeeping software for most businesses no matter their size, it’s evident why Xero is now known ‘as the accountant’s tool for non-accountants’.
If you’re interested in learning more about the best bookkeeping software for your business, get in touch with our accounting specialists here at 2account and we’d be pleased to assist you.