Best Free and Paid Accounting Software for Small Business in 2021

With the rise in startups, the popularity of startups has also significantly increased. The number of startups has also increased, both in India and abroad. According to a survey by Inc. India, the number of Indian startups has increased from 200 to about 3,000 in 2015. In 2020, this number may increase to 8,000. Although the size of each technology startup is usually small, the success rate of these startups is high.

It’s 2021, and you’re a small business owner. You have a computer, you have an internet connection, and you want to run a successful business. What do you do? Do you buy a dedicated accounting software package? Do you spend all your time and resources learning to use Photoshop, or do you hire a graphic designer?

One of the biggest problems small business owners face these days is keeping track of the many different accounting software packages on the market today. The sheer number of options can make it difficult to find an accounting package that is easy to use, cost-effective, and offers features that will allow you to easily handle your business’s bookkeeping and payroll needs.

There are a lot of things to handle when you run a small company. Check out our selection of the top free and paid accounting software for small companies below to make accounting chores simpler.

You Should Use the Best Accounting Software for Small Businesses

Accounting software may make a tough and unpleasant job more manageable and even enjoyable.

Our picks for the finest accounting software for small companies are listed below.

  1. Self-employed QuickBooks
  2. Xero
  3. FreshBooks
  4. Accounting for waves
  5. Zoho Books is a web-based publishing platform.
  6. Sage Cloud Accounting for Business
  7. Kashoo

QuickBooks Self-employed (version 1)

CPAs often suggest QuickBooks, the most well-known accounting software for small companies. The program is simple to use and comes with plenty of documentation and tutorials to help you out if you get stuck.

For freelancers or independent contractors who need to keep track of income and expenditures for tax reasons, the self-employed version is ideal. It is, however, not as feature-rich as the standard edition for small companies.


  • The CPA has given their approval.
  • Scalable.
  • The UI is simple to use.
  • Because it is cloud-based, you can access it from anywhere.
  • There is a mobile app provided.
  • Add-ons and interfaces with a variety of different applications are available.
  • It keeps track of your miles.
  • It’s compatible with TurboTax.

⛔️ CONS:

  • Expensive.
  • Reporting options are limited.
  • There is a deficiency in the area of invoicing.

2. Xero

Xero is the finest easy accounting software for small businesses in our opinion. This one is rated higher than QuickBooks by some accountants. At $11/month, the beginning pricing is quite reasonable. Create invoices, monitor expenditures, reconcile bank accounts, import sales transactions, and manage inventory with ease.

xero image

One of Xero’s outstanding features is its ability to manage fixed assets and calculate depreciation. You may use it as a full-service CRM for each vendor, client, and employee. The invoicing section is a little lacking, and the reporting section isn’t as robust as QuickBooks’.


  • All options allow for an infinite number of users.
  • Affordably priced.
  • Management of inventory and assets.
  • Over 800 applications are compatible.
  • Cloud-based.
  • Gusto integration for payroll.

⛔️ CONS:

  • To obtain multi-currency support, cost monitoring, and project management, you’ll need the most expensive subscription.
  • The mobile app isn’t completely functioning.
  • Fees associated with ACH payments.
  • There is no phone or live chat assistance.

FreshBooks is number three.

FreshBooks is a good option that excels in the area of invoicing. Not only can you easily manage your accounting duties, but you also have a lot of control over how you create, email, and print invoices. It may also be used to make and manage bids.

freshbooks image

FreshBooks began as an invoicing tool, so it’s no surprise that it’s been dubbed the finest invoicing software. FreshBooks may also be used for a variety of additional accounting activities, such as inputting and paying bills, taking deposits or retainer payments, and so on. It cannot, however, manage inventories or payroll.


  • Strong features for invoicing.
  • Because it is cloud-based, you can access it from anywhere.
  • It’s very easy to use.
  • Integrations.
  • Affordably priced.

⛔️ CONS:

  • There is no payroll assistance.
  • There is no inventory control.
  • Mobile app that has been scaled down.

4. Accounting for waves

Wave Accounting is a free small company accounting program. You will be charged a fee if you utilize Wave for payroll or to pay any transactions. The initiative is targeted for freelancers and independent contractors, but it may also be used by small companies with basic requirements.

wave-accounting image

It features a simple, user-friendly interface that quickly performs double-entry accounting chores, bank reconciliations, and client statements printing. Wave is constantly developing; nevertheless, bear in mind that, although the price is reasonable, you get what you pay for, and certain features are subpar and others are completely missing.


  • Unrestricted (except for payment and payroll).
  • Accounting with two entries.
  • This is ideal for freelancers.
  • Strong features for invoicing.
  • Pre-authorize credit card payments that will be made on a regular basis.
  • Support for many currencies.

⛔️ CONS:

  • Very straightforward.
  • More invoice customization is required.
  • There is no timer.
  • There is no support for a discount.
  • Payroll functions are limited.
  • There is no mobile app available.

Zoho Books is the fifth option.

Zoho Books is part of a larger suite of solutions that includes project management and customer relationship management add-ons (best CRM software). It is very cost effective, beginning at only $9 per month. The automatic tools that make it simple to set up regular expenditures, send customer reminders, and manage inventory are popular among users.

zoho-books image

However, this software has a major flaw: it can only manage payroll if you reside in California, Texas, or India. Because the software does not connect with third-party payroll systems, all of those entries will have to be manually input.


  • This software is less expensive than any other on the market.
  • It is compatible with other Zoho products.
  • Built-in client collaboration.
  • Included are automations.

⛔️ CONS:

  • Payroll functionalities are missing.
  • There aren’t many third-party applications that it integrates with.
  • Learning to utilize is more challenging.

Sage Business Cloud Accounting is number six.

Another powerful alternative for small companies is Sage Business Cloud Accounting. It comes with a slew of useful features, like real-time bank account sync, invoicing, and extensive customization. Although the software interacts with Microsoft Office 365 and allows you to access certain cloud-based programs, it is still installed on your computer.

sage-business-cloud-accounting image

Sage offers a lot of features, but it’s not very simple to use, and the UI seems a little old. The website is difficult to use and navigate. It’s also very pricey, beginning at $567 per year and rising from there. However, for that money, you get a lot of customization.


  • Detailed records are kept.
  • Inventory management tools that are excellent.
  • Integration with Microsoft 365.
  • There is a lot of room for personalization.

⛔️ CONS:

  • The user interface is outdated.
  • Expensive.
  • It’s not as simple to utilize as some of the other choices.
  • Only works on the Windows operating system.
  • It makes extensive use of heavy resources.
  • There is no timer.
  • This isn’t a good mobile app.

7. Kashoo

Kashoo is one of the most user-friendly accounting software packages available, and it can be set up in under a minute! It’s ideal for company people who aren’t familiar with accounting. Kashoo use artificial learning to understand how your company operates, saving you time while inputting transactions.

kashoo image

Kahoo’s greatest feature is its ability to effortlessly manage revenue and expenditures. It is excellent for extremely small businesses due to its simplicity and feature set (1 or 2 employees).

It does, however, include payroll assistance from SurePayroll. Kashoo may be just up your alley if you don’t need a lot of bells and whistles. It’s also reasonably priced at $19.95 each month. If you join up for SurePayroll, you will be charged a payroll cost.


  • Budgeting and financial planning have never been easier.
  • Bookkeeping that is simple and quick.
  • The user interface is simple.
  • Cost monitoring and management are included in the project.
  • Excellent customer service through email, phone, and chat.
  • SurePayroll is a payroll service.
  • There is an iPad app included.

⛔️ CONS:

  • There is no timer.
  • There is no inventory control.
  • More add-ons are required.
  • There is no Android app.

FAQs about the Best Accounting Software

The following are some of the most commonly asked questions regarding small company accounting software.

What is the finest accounting software for a small business?

Your requirements and budget will determine which accounting software is ideal for your small company. QuickBooks is the one to pick if you want a complete solution that has received great praise for being the finest accounting software for small businesses.

What is the best free accounting software for small businesses?

There are a few software programs that provide a free trial, but Wave Accounting is the only genuine free choice that is available forever. It is not, however, appropriate for all small companies. It is better suited to freelancers and independent contractors.

Is QuickBooks the best accounting software for small businesses?

Yes. QuickBooks is the finest online accounting software for small businesses without a doubt. You won’t find a software with as many features and as much dependability as QuickBooks. There’s a reason why many CPAs recommend QuickBooks to their customers.

In this article we will describe the best free and paid accounting software for small business in 2021.. Read more about free accounting software south africa and let us know what you think.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the easiest accounting software for small business?

QuickBooks is an accounting software that is easy to use and relatively inexpensive.

Does Google have a free accounting software?

Yes, Google has a free accounting software called Google Sheets.

What is the best offline accounting software for small business?

The best offline accounting software for small business is QuickBooks.

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  • free small business accounting software download
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