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Choose a financial program that fits your needs and your budget
Gone are the days when paper-based ledgers were the only option to track key accounting tasks. Now, a plethora of small business accounting software choices are available. Accounting software can help your business in numerous ways: reducing errors, saving time, organizing customer data, streamlining payroll and giving you a complete view of your company's financial status. With a clear picture of your financials, you can make smarter business decisions.
Before choosing among software accounting systems, here are some key questions:
Can it scale or upgrade if my business grows?
Is it easy to learn and easy to use?
Does it have all the features I need?
Does it have features I don't need?
Will it run on my computer?
Will it work on an office network?
Does the vendor offer online and phone support?
Is the price right for my needs?
Tips & Tactics to Get the Most from Small Business Accounting Software
Helpful advice for making the most of this Guide
If you're new to business accounting, consider a solution that also has books — as opposed to online help guides — available to step you through accounting software and the accounting process.
As you evaluate small business accounting software packages, make sure that your industry-specific versions or add-ons are priced right for your needs, and that you buy the correct version — for example, 'basic,' 'pro' or 'enterprise.'
If more than one person will use your accounting software from more than a single computer, make sure that your version will run on a network and/or is priced right for multiple licenses.
Don't always choose based only a price. A solution that saves you $30 might cost you hours of time if it's harder to use or requires customization.