I am going to make an assumption that you are a small business person, or want to be. I I will do my best to convince you to use Quickbooks as an integral part of your accounting system. Though I am not employed by Intuit (the maker of Quickbooks); I do believe that it is the best choice for 99% of small businesses.
Fair warning: I take a different approach than most accountants who you have read.
Reason #1: You need to be tracking your income and expenses anyway, and Quickbooks gives you an easy way to do it.
Most accounting professionals will start off justifying this by saying that you need to track your income and expenses for tax purposes, and if you don't, you'll get into deep trouble.
While understandable, this kind of thinking gets people off on the wrong foot. While technically true, it's a misguided approach. Why are you in business anyway: to support the various levels of government? I didn't think so. It is a much better approach to understand that you need to keep good accounting records for you, to have a clearer understanding of where your money is coming from and where it's going.
If your accounting system is set up to optimize the information you need, doing tax reporting is not that difficult.
Reason #2: Quickbooks is simple to use.
Why is this important? Tools that are easy to use actually do get used. The Quickbooks people understand that real people are using their software, and make it a snap to record your business transactions.
Consider as well that although you are the primary or only user of your Quickbooks installation at present, this may change as your business expands, and you may hire someone to take care of your books. Wouldn't you rather flatten out the learning curve for someone learning your accounting system?
Reason #3: Quickbooks is inexpensive.
Now the fact that Quickbooks is not very expensive shouldn't be the only factor, or even the most important factor, in choosing it. However, the reality is that due to it's low price, it's not something that most businesses will need to put off buying.
Most likely, you can afford to go out and buy it today. I bought my copy of Quickbooks Pro 2007 for $100 with a coupon. Even without the coupon, it was only $150. So, it's not a huge investment.
Reason #4: Quickbooks is ubiquitous.
Quickbooks is everywhere! What that means is your accountant or bookkeeper will likely be familiar with it, and customized templates and add-ons (in the event you need them, which you probably don't) are easier to find than with other, less popular software.
There are also numerous online user groups available to answer your questions. Some of these groups are very active, with many knowledgable professionals participating.
In addition, if you hire someone to take care of data entry, as mentioned earlier in this article, you are likely to find someone already familiar with Quickbooks.
Reason #5: Quickbooks is compatible with many other software applications and online services.
You will probably be able to download transactions from your bank, although there are arguments for and against this practice and you need to decide what is best for you. Quickbooks also integrates with many other software packages such as inventory systems. This feature will minimize the need to double-enter data.
I have covered some of the major reasons that you should consider using Quickbooks in your small business. I believe it is the best choice for most small businesses' accounting system.
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