Intuit QuickBooks Online vs Desktop – Choose the right software for your business!


So, you want to use Intuit’s world leading QuickBooks software to manage your accounting, but you can’t decide between the online and desktop versions? There are plenty of other people who have the same dilemma as you. For this reason, we dived into both applications and have come up with this conclusive article, which shall help you to get a better understanding of both versions – the good news is that you cannot go wrong with either choice. Both applications are fantastic products th at comply with Thai accounting rules and will meet the needs of your business. However, there are some important differences between the two of them that you should be aware of. While the one is not better than the other, they each have their own use cases. This means one of the two may be more suitable for your business than the other. This article will go over the differences between the two and list the features available to each version of the QuickBooks application.


QuickBooks Online

Starting with QuickBooks Online, the cloud-based accounting software is available anywhere – all you need is a web browser through which you can access it. Even though it is the much newer of the two applications (QuickBooks Desktop has its roots all the way back in the 90s), there are still some things that QuickBooks Online does better than its desktop counterpart. For one, QuickBooks Online offers automated invoices and sales receipts. Through the online client, you can set up rules for recurring transactions that can be sent to your customers on a regular basis. Even better, you can add rules to these recurring transactions so that the owner or user of QuickBooks Online can be copied in on each email. If your business depends upon recurring transactions, then this feature of QuickBooks Online will dovetail perfectly with your business model. While the Desktop version of QuickBooks allows you to save certain transactions for future use, it does not have an automated feature. If you have QuickBooks Desktop and have customers with recurring orders, you will still have to manually go through and send out those invoices every month.

quickbooks online software

Another benefit to using QuickBooks Online is that data can be transferred quickly and easily between you and your accountant. You will be able to exchange your data with your accountant just by inviting her/him as a QuickBooks Online Accountant, getting you access to both parties’ data in real time. No more having to share the same computer or manually transfer data, as you would have to with the Desktop version of QuickBooks. With QuickBooks Online, you can see all information from anywhere at any time. The cloud-based platform of QuickBooks Online enables you to be more productive by taking away the requirement to manually share your data with your accountant. If you are not able to meet with your accountant frequently in-person, then choosing to use the QuickBooks Online application may be the better choice for your business.

Next, QuickBooks Online takes away the need for you to have to worry about updating to the latest and greatest version of the application. Because QuickBooks Online works as a web application, all of the updates are taken care of by Intuit. Once you load up the online application in your browser, you can be sure that you are using the most recent version of QuickBooks available. Intuit works to release new versions of QuickBooks every month, so you will have access to new features of the online application as soon as possible. Plus, with the Online application, you and your accountant will always be using the same version of QuickBooks. In short, using a web application simplifies your life by making sure that you always have access to the most recent features of QuickBooks and that your client always has access to the same version of the application that you use.

On a related note, the frequent update cycle to QuickBooks Online means that it is rapidly gaining features that used to be exclusive to the Desktop version of QuickBooks. If you are not yet sold on using the Online application and are concerned that it does not have a feature you currently need, it will likely be added in the near future. The Intuit team is very interested in making sure that the QuickBooks Online application is just as powerful as the QuickBooks Desktop application, so they have a huge incentive to make sure that they add those features you need as quickly as possible. If you can live without those features for a few months, you will probably have access to them with the online version very soon.

QuickBooks Desktop

What if those features that the Online application is missing truly are crucial to your business’ needs? In that case, using QuickBooks Desktop is your best choice. Even though the QuickBooks Online application is rapidly gaining features exclusive to the Desktop client, if you use a feature exclusive to the Desktop version every single day, it is a better choice to stick with the Desktop client. While it is true that there are many third-party extensions that can add some Desktop-only functionality to QuickBooks Online, you cannot beat the ease of having all of those features you need baked into the Desktop version.

track how your business is doing with quickbooksThere are two benefits to QuickBooks Desktop that could have implications for your overall productivity. One benefit to the Desktop version of QuickBooks is that it typically offers better performance for large volumes of data. If you are in a business where dealing with huge amounts of customer data is common, QuickBooks Desktop will most likely offer better performance. For example, business’ in the retail space typically have to deal with these very large amounts of data, so opting for QuickBooks Desktop will end up being the more efficient option for you in the long run. Furthermore, if you frequently find yourself without access to an internet connection, having an application that does not require you to use a web browser to access it will enable you to be more productive with your time.

One other point of difference between the two versions of QuickBooks comes in its cost. If you choose the Desktop version of the application, you only have to pay a single price up front. If you try to avoid any recurring transactions in your business or are looking to save costs in the long run, a single up-front payment will be the better choice. On the other hand, if you prefer the monthly payment and along keep your cashflow stable, QuickBooks Online has multiple tiers of access, starting from only $15 each month. Naturally, there are advantages to both pricing models, and it comes down to what is best for your business when making this decision. One exception to this is the Enterprise version of QuickBooks Desktop, called QuickBooks Enterprise 20.0. This version is priced at $1,213 each year. There are some specific use cases in which the enterprise version is best for you, so if this is something that may fit well with your business, get in touch and we will share our knowledge with you.


How We Can Help

We’ve thrown a lot of information at you with this article, so it is understandable if you have more questions about what the best choice is for your unique situation. At the end of the day, Intuit, as one of the market pioneers, offers two fantastic, easy to use applications that fit well to the Thai accounting standards. One is not better than the other, but there are certainly cases in which one version or the other makes more sense. If you want someone else to take a look at your business and help you decide what the best choice is for your business, get in touch with our skilled experienced Accountants & Quickbooks ProAdvisor Team. We do have the skillset to help you decide, which is the best version of the QuickBooks application for you to use. As the second licensed Intuit reseller in Thailand, we have helped many clients, and we would love to help you make the best choice for your business too.

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