Comparing FreshBooks and QuickBooks Online

  • QuickBooks Online is a robust accounting software solution for businesses of all sizes.
  • Freelancers and service-based businesses may prefer FreshBooks because of its time-tracking and invoicing tools.
  • Both QuickBooks Online and FreshBooks have pricing tiers to fit business budgets of all sizes.
  • This article is for small business owners who are evaluating accounting software that best meets the needs of their organization.

FreshBooks and QuickBooks Online are two popular Internet-based accounting and bookkeeping tools for small businesses. Both have strong features and different pricing tiers, but depending on the needs of your business, one or the other may be a better option for you. Here's a look at the features and pricing options for FreshBooks and QuickBooks Online to help you choose the best accounting software for your business.

Editor's Note: Looking for the Right Accounting Software for Your Business? Fill out the questionnaire below to have our vendor partners contact you about your needs.

TipTip: FreshBooks and QuickBooks Online accommodate all types of accounting methods and offer free 30-day trials. Consider exploring both options before committing to either one.

What is QuickBooks Online?

QuickBooks is an industry leader in accounting software. Developed by Intuit nearly 40 years ago, QuickBooks tailors its accounting software to small and medium-sized businesses, though it also has enterprise-level tools.

The cloud-based QuickBooks Online (QBO) is designed for business owners and accountants. It is intuitive and offers a wide range of accounting features including the following:

  • Invoicing for clients and contractors
  • organization of business expenses
  • Project Time Tracking Time
  • Integration of credit card payments, automatic deposits and bank feeds
  • Simple Financial Reporting and Financial Statement Reporting
  • accounting reports, such as general ledger and bank reconciliation
  • tax deduction maximization
  • Inventory Management (in Plus and Advanced plans)
  • Payroll Management (as an add-on to any plan)

did you know?did you know? There are several versions of QuickBooks, customized to suit the needs and budget of each business owner.

QuickBooks Online Pricing and Features

QuickBooks Online offers four pricing tiers with different features to suit the needs of many business types and sizes. Pricing specials and discounts are often available.

  1. Simple start: The QuickBooks Simple Start plan runs for $25 per month and covers the plethora of accounting functions needed for small business operations. Simple Start can manage income and expenses, generate reports, organize receipts, and perform general tax reporting and transactions. The main drawback is that the plan is limited to a single user.
  2. Mandatory: The QuickBooks Essentials plan is $50 per month and offers additional features and functionality, including time-tracking and bill-payment management. The Essentials plan allows up to three users.
  3. Plus: The most popular option is the QuickBooks Plus plan at $80 per month. It allows access to up to five users, and its features include inventory management and the ability to forecast and track a project's profitability.
  4. Advanced: The QuickBooks Advanced Plan offers all the features of the Plus plan as well as more advanced functionality, including business analytics, premium apps, employee training, and the ability to batch invoice and expenses, which helps eliminate repetitive tasks. Is.

TipTip: If you have employees, add QuickBooks Payroll to any available plan to make QBO a one-stop shop for your accounting essentials. Read our QuickBooks Payroll review for more information.

QuickBooks Online User Ratings

Here's a look at how users rate QBO for its features and pricing. QBO has an overall rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars.


  • accounting method
  • Hardware and software requirements
  • overall features
  • Integrations and Add-ons



  • Pricing
  • Customer Service & Support
  • Review

QuickBooks Online users say these are the product's biggest strengths:

  • advanced invoicing
  • cloud-based access
  • Multiple Features
  • ease of use
  • about 700 integrations
  • mobile apps
  • tax support
  • built-in lending

The same QBO users listed these as vulnerabilities:

  • high price
  • Only proper customer support
  • Sometimes Unknown User Experience

TipTip: Read our QuickBooks Online accounting software review for more in-depth information about this accounting software.

What is FreshBooks?

Created in 2003, FreshBooks is a QuickBooks alternative that provides a seamless platform for small businesses to manage their financial concerns. While FreshBooks is not as big a name as QuickBooks, it has garnered over 24 million subscribers.

Designed for business owners, FreshBooks offers several accounting features:

  • Invoicing for clients and contractors
  • organization of expenses
  • Project Time Tracking
  • time clock for employees
  • Communication function that allows employees to chat from anywhere
  • Integration of credit card payments and automatic deposits
  • Simple Financial Reporting and Financial Statement Reporting
  • accounting reports, such as general ledger and bank reconciliation
  • easy-to-use mobile app

FreshBooks Pricing and Features

FreshBooks offers four pricing tiers, including a custom tier for businesses with more complex needs. Note that you can also add team members to any of these plans for $10 per month per person.

  • Light: The FreshBooks Lite plan is $7.50 per month and has many of the functions a small business owner needs to manage their books. While the Lite plan helps track and organize expenses, receive payments and bank wires, and record revenue while generating reports, it is limited to five billable customers. If you're a freelancer or consultant with five or fewer clients, the Lite plan may be a good fit for your accounting needs.
  • Plus: The FreshBooks Plus plan is the most popular at $12.50 per month. It greatly improves on the Lite plan's features, allowing you to run more advanced financial and accounting reports, giving your accountant greater access to your records, and allowing up to 50 billable customers.
  • Price: The FreshBooks Premium plan is $25 per month. It lets you create invoices for an unlimited number of customers and includes additional advanced functionality, including the accounts payable feature and project profitability forecasting.
  • Choose: The cost of the FreshBooks Select plan is customized based on your usage and the tasks you require. This plan hides all FreshBooks logos from invoicing, email, and other client communication channels. This includes more advanced credit card features, such as the ability to charge your customers' credit cards, receive subscription or recurring payments, and access to lower credit card and automated clearinghouse fees. If you want another user to access your FreshBooks records through their own account, the selection plan is the way to go.

significant achievementsFYI: If you have employees, note that Gusto Payroll integrates with FreshBooks and can be added to any of the above plans. Read our Gusto Payroll review for more information.

FreshBooks Online User Ratings

Here's a look at how users rate FreshBooks for its features and pricing. FreshBooks has an overall rating of 4 out of 5 stars.


  • Customer Service & Support
  • Hardware and software requirements
  • Review
  • ease of use


  • Integrations and Add-ons
  • the protection


  • accounting method
  • overall features


FreshBooks users say these are the product's biggest strengths:

  • excellent customer service
  • Well Designed User Interface
  • Attractive, customizable invoice templates
  • ease of use
  • multiple integration
  • mobile apps

The same FreshBooks users listed these vulnerabilities:

  • high price
  • limited number of users
  • limited features

QuickBooks vs FreshBooks: Which is Best for Your Business?

Accounting software is an investment, as is the time it takes to navigate the system, learn to use and hide features, and train employees.

While both QuickBooks and FreshBooks can help your business report, record, track, and analyze its financial functions, ask yourself the following questions when choosing between QuickBooks Online and FreshBooks.

Do you sell a product or provide a service?

If your business sells a tangible product, QuickBooks Online is likely your better option. QBO not only helps retailers manage inventory, but also syncs to popular payment platforms such as PayPal, Shopify, and Square. It even has its own QuickBooks POS feature.

If you provide an intangible service, as many freelancers do, FreshBooks may be your best bet. FreshBooks says many of its clients are self-employed as freelancers or consultants, and it's designed a user-friendly interface that's easy to use for even the least tech-savvy entrepreneurs. FreshBooks is a great option for anyone who needs a secure, convenient way to record, store and report financial transactions.

What is the size and growth potential of your business?

If you have a small business or if your new business has potential for growth, QuickBooks Online will serve you best. As your revenue and workforce grow, QuickBooks Online payroll options and other upgrades help your accounting tools grow along with your organization. Small business owners say that it's easy to upgrade QuickBooks Online's options to include more advanced features.

FreshBooks is best for sole proprietors, sometimes known as solopreneurs, who manage and operate their business operations on their own. Many solopreneurs are consultants and freelancers, and they lean towards FreshBooks because of its time-tracking and project-tracking features. Additionally, it is relatively easy to invoice for time and projects.

significant achievementsImportant achievements: FreshBooks' invoicing features are intuitive, and the program's overall interface is straightforward. Read our in-depth review of FreshBooks for more details.

Who needs access to your business's accounting records?

With QuickBooks' nearly four-decade long life span and its growing popularity, many tax preparers, accountants and bookkeepers are familiar with QuickBooks. QBO has various plans that range from one to 25 users, making it ideal for businesses that have multiple users accessing or updating account records.

Similarly, if you submit your accounting records to a certified public accountant (CPA) for tax purposes, your CPA probably relies on your QBO records.

Choosing Your Accounting Software

After answering the above questions, examining features and pricing options, and reading ratings and reviews, you should be able to choose the right accounting software for your business.

There is a lot of overlap between FreshBooks and QuickBooks Online, as they perform similar functions. Choosing one or the other can make subtle differences and whether your business is a solo venture or a growing enterprise. Both will help you maintain accounting standards and meticulous accounting records for your business.

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