QuickBooks Online Review For Small Business Owners

QuickBooks Online (QBO) has grown by leaps and bounds since they launched in 2004. In October 2013, QuickBooks released a new redesigned version of QBO.  

I admit I wasn’t a big fan of the new version when it first came out.

I took it for a test drive over years ago and could not find anything in the online version that would justify a monthly cost when I already had the desktop version and it was working moderately well for me.

But last year I decided to do the free trial again and see if they had improved since the last time I had tried it.

I was pleasantly surprised to see they have improved…a lot! One of the main reason why I decided to give the online version another try is because I heard the bank and credit card integration worked better in the online version. It does!

And… it has a PayPal bank feed as well! Most of my online business is handled through PayPal and entering all my sales and fees from PayPal to the desktop QuickBooks was a dreaded chore each month.

Those automatic imports have whittled down my bookkeeping time from 5 to 6 hours to 30 minutes. It also made a dreaded task that I would put off and do grudgingly once a month to a quick easy chore I now do weekly in just a few minutes.

It was a bit of a learning curve going from the desktop version to the QuickBooks Online version. Almost everything is different! But they did make it overall user-friendly and the video tutorials that pop up when you setup QBO is pretty helpful for learning the basics.

What I like about QuickBooks Online now:

  • Bank and credit card integration
  • PayPal integration
  • Easy setup (My desktop QuickBooks file imported automatically and smoothly into QBO…however…I have heard that larger files with inventory and/or ARs didn’t import as smoothly.)
  • The interface is truly easy to maneuver…once you learn where everything is at 🙂
  • Video tutorials are available in the software and the Intuit Academy.
  • The Quick Create button at the top is handy to get to commonly used tasks such as Deposits (“Make Deposit” window in Desktop) and Checks (“Write Check” window in Desktop)
  • The sidebar lets you click on options such as Transactions that will then expand to commonly used options such as Banking, Sales, Expenses, and the Chart of Accounts
  • The gear at the top right side drops down to quick access to company settings, lists, and tools.
  • Each account in the Chart of Accounts is easy to edit or delete or even run a quick report on by clicking on a little dropdown arrow at the end of the row.
  • Expenses and Income are conveniently displayed on the dashboard. The Profit and Loss section includes dropdown arrow that include options to display income and expenses at a glance for last 30 days, this month, this quarter, this year, last month, last quarter, or last year.
  • So far…I have had a good experience with QBO Support, but have heard others say it was not so pleasant =(

What I still don’t like:

  • The Chart of Accounts (COA) is not near as easy to  work with as the desktop version! You can’t duplicate an account. Nor can you move them around like you can in the desktop.
  • I have not had to call QBO support but complaints abundantly abound regarding QuickBooks long wait times and not so knowledgeable reps.

I have been using QuickBooks Online for years now and so far what I like far outweighs what I don’t. I will continue to add to my above lists as I find out more things I can and cannot do with this accounting software.

My overall impression with QBO is that it is a good accounting solution for small business like mine.

If you find yourself dreading and putting off your bookkeeping duties because of your current cumbersome accounting software, you might want to try QuickBooks Online 30 day free trial and take it for a spin.

QuickBooks Online Tips

I am going to be adding to this section on a monthly basis,  so bookmark this page and check back often =)

First QuickBooks Online (QBO) tip is regarding their report section. I love the abundance of reports you can generate in QBO, but my favorite section of the reports is the …

Company Snapshot

I love graphs, so this report module is right down my alley =)

You can choose …

  • YTD
  • Last Month
  • Last Quarter
  • Last Year

… on the pie graphs for your income and expenses.

And Monthly or Quarterly for “Previous Year Income/Expense Comparison” bar graphs.