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QuickBooks Online vs QuickBooks Desktop

Your business needs accounting software, which comes in a staggering range of possibilities. From on-the-go mobile apps to heavy-duty desktop applications, you can find a program best suited to your business’s size and aspirations.

When it comes to QuickBooks, you’ll have the choice between the cloud-based QuickBooks Online and original QuickBooks Desktop. We’ll explore the key differences between QuickBooks Online vs QuickBooks Desktop below to help you find the best fit.

QuickBooks Online vs QuickBooks Desktop: what’s the difference?

Let’s begin with the similarities. Both QuickBooks Online and QuickBooks Desktop are small business accounting applications offering double-entry accounting and automatic closing entry processing. The key difference is their interface. While the Desktop version uses a flow-chart interface, the Online version uses a more streamlined, cloud-based interface that you can access from any device.

QuickBooks Online is primarily designed for very small or startup businesses, often on the go.

QuickBooks Desktop is designed for small to medium-sized businesses looking for more in-depth features, including industry-specific applications.

Main features of QuickBooks Online vs Desktop

Now that we’ve given a quick overview of QuickBooks Online vs Desktop above, it’s time to delve into the more specific features.

QuickBooks Online offers:

  • Flexible selection of features you can pick and choose from during the setup process

  • Online banking connectivity to match transactions with expenses for automatic bank reconciliation

  • Budget feature to create monthly, quarterly, or annual forecasts

  • Accounting capability for up to 250 accounts

  • Sales feature to create invoices, track customer details, and post payments

  • Automatic payment reminders and payment links

  • Business expense tracking and online bill payments

QuickBooks Desktop offers:

  • Automatic bank feeds to download transactions for bank reconciliation

  • The capability to host the software on QB Cloud, though it’s not primarily web-based

  • Vendor Center provides a central dashboard to manage vendor activities, details, and bills

  • Customer Center provides a central dashboard to manage customer details, invoices, payments, and sales

  • Inventory module sends low stock alerts, reorder levels, product tracking, and inventory management

  • Easily integrates with QuickBooks Payments for easier payment processing

With its comprehensive centers, QuickBooks Desktop offers wider functionality than QuickBooks Online.


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  • Mar 7 2022
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