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Choosing the right version of QuickBooks accounting software for your growing company can be confusing. Other small business owners prefer the desktop version QuickBooks, while others want the convenience of the cloud-based edition, QuickBooks Online (QBO).

Early and current users who have been accustomed to the desktop variant of QuickBooks; which was released in the 1990’s long before the use of software over the internet was common, likes its features over online version. However, QBO is more stripped down in terms of functionality, making it convenient for business owners.

QuickBooks is the better solution if you are a product-based small business. It’s easy to use and has multiple inventory tracking options; the average cost method or the First In, First Out (FIFO) method. This tool also has batch invoicing capability allowing you to invoice multiple clients at the same time. It also enables you to download your bank transactions to monitor money coming in and out of your business. Still, this version requires you to install the software in your computer which means you will not be able to access the data when you are not on your desk. You also need to create backup for your files since the desktop version doesn’t automatically store information. User access is permitted if you purchase hosting services.  Although, the online version has a 30-day free trial, QuickBooks has a 60-day money back guarantee.

If you’re a service-based business, QuickBooks Online is the ideal solution for you. This version very user-friendly and it utilizes cloud technology which means that as long as an internet connection is present, you can access your files anytime, anywhere, and from any device; automatically backing up data with the security encryption used by the world’s leading banks. This tool promotes automation, so, if information is updated by another user, you will immediately see it. QBO only allows the FIFO method of inventory, and does not include batch invoicing in its features. The desktop model offers industry-specific features, but QBO has yet to offer this.

Whether you decide to purchase QuickBooks for its exemplary inventory capabilities or QuickBooks Online for its accessibility and ease of use, they are both great products that small businesses depend on everyday.

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Writer, editor and bookworm. A big fan of US police procedural dramas.

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