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FreshBooks Versus QuickBooks

FreshBooks and QuickBooks are the two most popular accounting software programs for entrepreneurs and small business owners.

Both services are exceptionally popular and offer very similar features and UIs. But which one is the better choice for your business? Find out today as we compare FreshBooks and QuickBooks.

What’s the Difference Between the Two?

FreshBooks and QuickBooks are two different types of software. FreshBooks is more accurately labeled as invoicing software with some additional accounting features, while QuickBooks is accounting software with some additional invoicing features.

FreshBooks is very good at invoicing, while QuickBooks is very good at accounting.

QuickBooks is the original personal accounting software. Launched in the 1980s, it still dominates the small and medium-sized business accounting software worlds to this day. FreshBooks, however, launched in 2003 and quickly became the number one competitor to QuickBooks.


FreshBooks is cheaper than QuickBooks on most plans.

With FreshBooks, pricing starts at $9.95 per month. QuickBooks Online, on the other hand, is priced starting at $12.95 per month.

Both services offer pricier plans packed with more features. And both FreshBooks and QuickBooks offer a 30 day free trial – so you can try out both services to see if they’re the right choice for you before you lock in.

Editor’s Note: Looking for information on payroll services? Use the questionnaire below and our vendor partners will contact you to provide you with the information you need:

Accounting Features

As mentioned above, both FreshBooks and QuickBooks have a similar range of accounting features. These companies are well aware of their biggest competitor in the industry, and when one software introduces a new feature, the other company typically matches that feature.

Below, we’ll breakdown some of the common features shared by both QuickBooks Online and FreshBooks as well as any unique individual accounting features they may have.

FreshBooks and QuickBooks Online Shared Features

Here are all of the major accounting features shared by both FreshBooks and QuickBooks:

API, Applications Management, Billing & Invoicing, Expense Tracking, Invoices, Multi-Currency Support, Profit/Loss Statement, Recurring Billing, Sales Tax Management, Software Management, Timesheet Management, Timesheets, and Vendor Comparison.

FreshBooks-Only Features

Meanwhile, FreshBooks has some exclusive features that aren’t available (or are fairly limited on QuickBooks Online). Those features include:

Authentication and Security, Automatic Reminders, Billable Hours, Brainstorming, Electronic Payments, IT/Software Projects, Import/Export Data, Invoice Management, Multi-Country Support, Project Time Tracking, Project Tracking, Projections, Receipt Management, Subscription Services, Time & Expense Tracking, Time Tracking by Project, Timer, and Tracking Features.

QuickBooks-Only Features

Here are some of the features that are exclusively offered by QuickBooks (or are just offered in a superior way on QuickBooks compared to FreshBooks).

Account Reconciliation, Accounting Management, Application Integration, Application Security, Balance Sheet, Categorizing, Custom Fields, Data Synchronization, Estimating, List Printing, Purchasing Management, Receiving, Requirements Review, Review Fields, and Software Inventory.

Ultimately, if you compare these two feature lists, you’ll notice that FreshBooks has more invoicing features, while QuickBooks has more accounting features.


FreshBooks specializes in helping service-based professionals create the best possible invoices. As such, invoicing is where it truly shines. Some of the invoice-specific features offered by FreshBooks include the ability to accept credit cards on your invoices, know when your invoice has been viewed, create estimates and quotes, and send recurring invoices to clients.

FreshBooks also lets you automatically import data from your bank, track expense spending with expense reports, and quickly add receipts to invoices (like by taking a picture of them with your mobile device).

Time tracking is also another bright point for FreshBooks. FreshBooks understands that sometimes, your projects require multiple people working together. That’s why it lets you easily add unbilled time to invoices, visualize team progress over time, and track the amount of time the team has spent on a project.

QuickBooks obviously provides extensive invoicing features, but it’s not an area of specialty like it is with FreshBooks. The basic EasyStart package (the cheapest FreshBooks plan available) only provides very basic invoicing services, including the ability to track your income and expenses, send unlimited invoices, download transactions from your bank, and access invoicing from your PC, Mac, tablet or smartphone.

The higher-priced QuickBooks Essentials package, on the other hand, gives you the ability to manage and pay bills, while the Plus package lets you create and send purchase orders and track inventory.

Ultimately, if you plan on doing a lot of invoicing, then FreshBooks is a great choice. QuickBooks Online doesn’t have bad invoicing, but FreshBooks is simply better.

Mobile Apps

Both FreshBooks and QuickBooks offer free apps for iOS and Android. These apps let you take your business on the go, send invoices, and check on your bookkeeping information.

The FreshBooks apps also come with unique features like the ability to track time from your mobile device (the timer continues to run in the background while you work) and the ability to take pictures of receipts if you’re tracking expenses.

The QuickBooks apps, on the other hand, work in pretty much the same way. You can accept electronic signatures from your mobile device and approve estimates on the spot.

Integration with Other Major Platforms

In terms of integration, QuickBooks Online is far better than FreshBooks. However, it’s important to note that both services work with all major platforms and services, so you shouldn’t find yourself too restricted if you’re using popular services.

Nevertheless, GetApp.com reports that FreshBooks integrates with a total of 79 other platforms and services while QuickBooks Online supports 145 different platforms and services.

Both services support PayPal and major cloud services, for example, but only QuickBooks Online supports Salesforce.


Both QuickBooks Online and FreshBooks have tossed out the old software-based systems. Today, both platforms are accessible online anywhere you have internet. You don’t need to download anything.

If you wish to use the services on your mobile devices, then you can download free mobile apps for iOS and Android.


Both QuickBooks and FreshBooks take security seriously. Both services are based in the cloud, so you can expect your data to be secured and encrypted while it’s locked away in the cloud. Most reviewers agree that the two companies are equal when it comes to security.

User Interface

Using accounting software is never going to be much fun. However, FreshBooks has repeatedly tried to differentiate itself from QuickBooks with fun graphics, colorful UIs, and an easy-to-navigate menu experience.

QuickBooks has certainly got better at its UI over the years, as QuickBooks Online is a breeze to navigate across all devices.

However, if you like a little humor, color, and entertainment mixed in with your accounting software, then the FreshBooks UI is a great choice. FreshBooks also repeatedly emphasizes that it’s easier to use than QuickBooks, and customers seem to agree.

Should You Use FreshBooks or QuickBooks for your Business?

FreshBooks and QuickBooks are two popular accounting software programs. As one writer explained, asking which one is better “is a lot like asking whether a hammer or a wrench is better.” You can use a wrench to hammer a nail and you can use the back end of a hammer like a wrench, but you’re really better off using each tool for its original purpose.

If you need to hammer nails, get a hammer. If you need to tighten and loosen bolts, get a wrench.

Applying that lesson to QuickBooks and FreshBooks, QuickBooks Online is full-service accounting software. It’s priced higher and comes with a wider range of features.

FreshBooks, on the other hand, is advertised as accounting software but is more accurately advertised as invoicing software.

If you need to create high-quality invoices and track those invoices for your company, FreshBooks is an easy and affordable solution.

If you need a more wide-ranging accounting software program, then QuickBooks is a higher-priced, but very effective and popular, solution.

Editor’s Note: Looking for information on payroll services? Use the questionnaire below and our vendor partners will contact you to provide you with the information you need:

About Johnson Hur

After having graduated with a degree in Finance and working for a Fortune 500 company for several years, Johnson decided to follow his passion by embarking on a path to the digital world. He has over 8 years of experience with large companies setting marketing strategy.

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