Quickbooks vs Freshbooks: 10 Critical Differences

• November 9th, 2021

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QuickBooks was developed by Intuit as an Accounting software package. QuickBooks products are primarily geared toward small and medium-sized businesses. These products also offer On-Premise Accounting applications along with Cloud-based versions that can accept business payments, help you pay and manage bills, and ensure smooth payroll functions. Freshbooks is Accounting software that primarily caters to medium-sized and small businesses, operated by 2ndSite Inc.

This article provides a comprehensive guide to the Quickbooks Online vs Freshbooks considering key factors like Time-Tracking, Accounting, Payroll, Pricing, Tax Calculations, Invoicing, Expense Tracking, and much more. It also gives a brief introduction to Quickbooks and Freshbooks before diving into the differences between the two. It also elicits the use cases where each tool can come in handy for any enterprise.

Table of Contents

What is Quickbooks?

Quickbooks vs Freshbooks: Quickbooks Logo
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QuickBooks Accounting software allows you to organize your accounting data on the Cloud while tracking Sales, Creating, Generating, and Transferring invoices. It also lets you know how your business is faring at any time. QuickBooks is easy to use and you don’t need to be a Finance or Accounting expert to learn the ropes of QuickBooks.

Key Features of Quickbooks

Here are the key features of Quickbooks that makes it an indispensable tool:

  • QuickBooks allows you to get a real-time view of your cash flow. You can connect your bank account to automatically categorize and import transactions. You can also seamlessly integrate and sync with popular apps to easily snap photos of your receipts. You can store these receipts with QuickBooks Mobile.
Quickbooks vs Freshbooks: Key features of Quickbooks
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  • With QuickBooks Accounting Software, you get powerful invoicing features such as Payment Reminders and Invoice Tracking at your fingertips. You can also access dozens of reports to help you manage your expenses. You can use the mobile app to manage your business on the go.  
Quickbooks vs Freshbooks: Quickbooks Dashboards
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  • QuickBooks Accounting software also allows you to enter vendors’ bills, and pay them only when they are due. Recurring payments can also be scheduled to save time. QuickBooks Accounting Software further houses free unlimited support to provide answers and useful information on running your business.

What is Freshbooks?

Quickbooks vs Freshbooks: Freshbooks
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Freshbooks has carved a name for itself as Accounting software that focuses on Invoicing and Time-Tracking. Founded in 2003, Freshbooks provides solutions that are more lucrative to small teams and entrepreneurs who wish to spend less time managing their accounting.

Freshbooks houses a pretty straightforward user interface. This allows you to get started with zero knowledge regarding software usage. Your Freshbooks accounts can be accessed on the go from anywhere, 24*7. This helps reduce the time you might spend on billing so that you can focus on handling your business better. Freshbooks tracks your time and accepts payment from 12 different gateways.

Key Features of Freshbooks

Here are the key features of Freshbooks that makes it an indispensable tool:

  • Multi-Currency Billing: With Freshbooks, you can send your invoices in whichever currency you and your client prefer to work in. 
  • Payment Reminders: If you’ve got a client that has a hard time remembering to pay their invoices, Freshbooks provides you with an easy way out. Set up automatic and customizable payment reminders with Freshbooks to simplify your tasks.  
  • Customizable Invoices: With Freshbooks, you can pick a template on the go, add your logo, and even adjust fonts and colours to ensure that your invoices never fail to wow your clients.
  • Easy Setup: Freshbooks allows you to accept credit cards with a single click thus simplifying all your transactions in the process.
  • Automatic Expense Recording: Transaction fees on Freshbooks is automatically recorded in your Freshbooks account. This allows you to have an accurate view of your expenses at all times.
  • Auto-Bills and Recurring Payments: Freshbooks makes it quite easy to automate recurring payments with auto-bills. You can set up a billing schedule to securely charge your client’s credit card automatically in seconds flat.

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Quickbooks vs Freshbooks: What is the Difference?

Here are the key differences between Quickbooks and Freshbooks keeping in mind the major factors to help you make an educated decision:

Quickbooks vs Freshbooks: Invoicing

The invoicing functionality of Freshbooks provides an invoicing panel with two tabs, namely, “to me” or “from me”. This allows you to easily make and accept payments. With the “from me” tab you can create custom invoices, accept credit card statements, and send out payment reminders. The “to me” tab depicts various flashcards below the overdue accounts. This allows you to take a glance at the payments that have been cleared.

When talking about the invoice structure, Freshbooks provides a bare-bones design in the trial mode. You can customize set logos or fonts or colours, but for additional features, you will have to unlock the premium version. Freshbooks takes the data directly from Timekeeping and creates invoices for hours that have been marked billable.

On the other hand, Quickbooks allows you to create a more detailed invoice where you can enter the customer location, payment method, and even payment terms (i.e, net 30, which allows the user to make the payment in a 30-day window).

Quickbooks vs Freshbooks: Time-Tracking

When talking about Time-Tracking, Freshbooks has a clear edge over Quickbooks. Freshbooks provides a built-in system that is both accurate and beginner-oriented. All you need to do is press the “start timer” button, and Freshbooks will start recording the time. Once you’re done, you can use the generate invoice button that will automatically add the hourly data to your invoice.

Quickbooks, on the other hand, doesn’t have that feature. But you can use a Quickbooks app to add this function: TSheets Time Tracking. It gives you additional features like proper timesheets (real-time work-check), accurate employee timesheets, and mobile access. 

Quickbooks vs Freshbooks: Integration Support/Integrations

Freshbooks provides over 70 unique integrations that allow you to use multiple platforms, including Google Workspace (G Suite), Shopify, Stripe, WooCommerce, HubSpot and so much more. Quickbooks has a clear edge over Freshbooks in this aspect, as over 650 apps can quickly integrate with Quickbooks.

Quickbooks vs Freshbooks: Expense Tracking

Both Freshbooks and Quickbooks provide you with useful features when it comes to Expense Tracking. The Freshbooks expense feature is great for precise client billing. Quickbooks, on the other hand, gives additional contractor and supplier tabs for keeping expenses organized.

Quickbooks vs Freshbooks: Freshbooks Expense Tracking
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Here are a couple of things that you can do with Freshbooks Expense Tracking:

  • Categorize your expenses on Freshbooks for easier tax preparation.
  • Get real-time expense tracking data.
  • Assign recurring expenses for organized tracking.
  • Use multi-currency expenses for easier calculation and much more.
Quickbooks vs Freshbooks: Quickbooks Expense Tracking
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Here are a couple of things that you can do with Quickbooks Expense Tracking:

  • Setting custom rules for expense categorization.
  • Getting valuable insights from powerful finance reports.
  • Using a built-in cash flow statement for tracking how much money you hold.
  • Linking your banking accounts, Square, PayPal, credit cards, and other platforms.
  • Easily assign and manage vendor payments to 1099 contractors. 

Quickbooks vs Freshbooks: Accounting

Freshbooks focuses on catering to the needs of freelancers, therefore, most of its features are focused on client billing. On the other hand, the Quickbooks accounting section is geared towards product billing.

Freshbooks provides double-entry accounting tools for an accurate profit and loss report. Here’s what it includes:

  • Trial Balance
  • Balance Sheet
  • Accounts Payable
  • Chart of Accounts
  • Journal Entries
  • Accountable Access
  • Cost of Goods Sold

Quickbooks provides deeper business insights from an accounting perspective. With Quickbooks, you can get a detailed cash flow report that allows you to simplify tax preparation. Quickbooks’ built-in mobile app helps you maximize deductions and stay compliant with the tax laws. Apart from this, there are accounting-specific integrations, live budgeting, forecasting, inventory management, vendor billing and crediting, 1099 reporting, and purchase orders. These are integrations that can’t be found in Freshbooks.  

Quickbooks vs Freshbooks: Reporting and Dashboards

Quickbooks offers a vast multitude of reports with their product, and the majority of these follow everything you need for accounting purposes. Every group of reports includes sub-reports that can drill down to the details you or your accountant might require for proper analysis:

  • Products and Inventory
  • Accounts Payable
  • Sales Tax Reporting
  • Employee Reports and much more.

On the other hand, Freshbooks Reporting focuses on profit margin, and their central dashboard depicts your periodic input versus output. Since Freshbooks works best as a time-tracking and invoicing tool, the reports focus on payment collection and a few tax-related reports.

Quickbooks vs Freshbooks: Pricing

Freshbooks provides affordable pricing plans for both agencies and freelancers. Their pricing modules differ based on the number of billable clients and additional reporting and tracking features.

  • Plus: $12.5/month
  • Lite: $7.5/month
  • Premium: $25/month
  • Custom: Contact Sales for more information (for 500+ billable clients)

You can test these out with a 30-day free trial. Freshbooks provides you with a 30-day refund window.

Quickbooks, on the other hand, is slightly more expensive. The Basic plan is meant only for a single user, while more advanced features like profit projection, inventory tracking, and time-tracking would need higher-tier plans. Here are the plans offered by Quickbooks:

  • Plus: $70/month
  • Simple Start: $25/month
  • Advanced: $150/month

When you first sign up, you can take advantage of a 30-day free trial, or you can pay upfront and get 50% off your first 3 months.

Quickbooks vs Freshbooks: Tax Calculations

While Freshbooks currently only tracks Sales taxes, Quickbooks can calculate both Sales and Income taxes giving it a clear edge over Freshbooks.

Quickbooks vs Freshbooks: Payroll

Freshbooks doesn’t offer a native feature for processing employee payrolls, but it offers two integrations: Gusto (previously known as ZenPayroll) which costs $6-$12/user/month after a base fee of $39, and PaymentEvolution, a Payroll service (Canada only) that has a limited free tier along with a $22/month tier instead.

On the other hand, all Quickbooks plans offer a Full-service Payroll ability that includes payroll runs, end-of-year forms, and auto-calculated taxes. It also provides an online portal to let employees view pay stubs and tax data with support for deductions and garnishments. 

Quickbooks vs Freshbooks: Customer Support and Service

Quickbooks provides you with a searchable online portal with video tutorials and articles to help guide users through common issues. It is conveniently divided into categories like “Payroll and Workers”, “Reports”, and “Advanced Accounting” among various others. Apart from this, you can also avail yourself of their blog and a community forum where users can interact with their peers.

Similarly, Freshbooks also has its online support portal with categories like “Invoices and Payments”, “Dashboard and Settings” and “My Team”. It also offers you dedicated phone support.

When to Choose Quickbooks?

Here are a couple of situations when choosing Quickbooks Online over Freshbooks is the more prudent choice:

  • If you only want a single financial tool: Quickbooks is a great all-in-one solution for all your invoicing and accounting needs. There are no major gaps to worry about. But, even if they exist, other Quickbooks products like the Quickbooks Point of Sale will fill many of these. This means that you can easily suffice with a smaller app stack. On the other hand, Freshbooks caters to a smaller audience: solopreneurs, small businesses, and freelancers looking for hassle-free and simple software. Since it avoids complexity, you likely have to sync Freshbooks with other tools to achieve a couple of custom outcomes, but this is way simpler to execute.
  • If you’re looking for a scalable accounting solution: Quickbooks provides you with fully-fledged accounting software that is built to scale. It has been designed for a large variety of business sizes and types as compared to Freshbooks. On top of this, Quickbooks also has a very comprehensive set of features.
Quickbooks vs Freshbooks: Why Choose Quickbooks?
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  • If your business sells products: Quickbooks easily stands out if you are selling retail goods or products, while Freshbooks has an edge for managing clients and billing as a freelancer. Quickbooks allows you to record your daily sales from every channel and sync sales systems like Shopify, Square, and PayPal. Quickbooks also provides you with inventory management to easily help you see what you have in stock and on order from your vendors. Say if you have a brick-and-mortar shop, you can take a look at the Quickbooks Point of Sale to help simplify your in-person transactions. As expected, it integrates seamlessly with Quickbooks Online. This allows you to see your POS purchases along with your other accounting data.
Quickbooks vs Freshbooks: Quickbooks Reports
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  • If you have a fast-growing or mid-sized business: If your business is currently rapidly growing in stature or mid-sized, Quickbooks Online is the likely pick for you. Freshbooks has a marvellous feature set for small businesses, but you will have to switch as and when your business grows. 
  • If your accountant prefers Quickbooks: Even if your accountant’s preferences aren’t the most vital factor in deciding the accounting software you choose to use, being aligned on the tools to be used can help make both of your lives easier. Quickbooks usually is the top choice for accountants in the US, but it has also risen in popularity across the world in the last few years. Quickbooks has expanded its operations to offer various country-specific integrations, bank needs, and tax compliance features. Since Freshbooks is still majorly focused on North America, if you live outside the states, your tax return might be faster with Quickbooks. 

When to Choose Freshbooks?

Here are some situations where Freshbooks is a better choice than Quickbooks:

  • If you’re just starting with your business: Irrespective of whether you are getting started with a small business idea or you’re working on a side hustle, you may not want to invest in super-fancy accounting software just yet. Freshbooks is a better choice than Quickbooks due to its simplicity. However, Quickbooks Online’s complexity allows you to accomplish a lot more. 
Quickbooks vs Freshbooks: Why Choose Freshbooks?
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  • If you’re a Freelancer: Freshbooks was designed while keeping small business owners, especially freelancers in mind. This is because Freshbooks makes it very easy to track time spent per project or client. This allows you to check your productivity in any period. Also, when it comes to invoicing, you can swiftly turn the hours into an invoice. You can also mark hours as already billed without creating an invoice from them. Other advantages of leveraging Freshbooks as a freelancer are manual and automated invoice reminders for unpaid bills, simple project management, and integration with Swipe to get paid online.
  • If you prioritize quick responses from support: The Freshbooks support team has been noted to be extremely helpful and responsive. They offer a website contact form along with an email address managed by toll-free phone numbers and humans. You can easily use your personal support key to give the Freshbooks team secure access to your account to help you set things up or make any fixes. Freshbooks is also renowned for having a great refund policy. This makes downgrades and upgrades more straightforward.
  • If you want user-friendly software that can be quickly set up: The main benefit of leveraging Freshbooks is that it’s extremely easy to use. Freshbooks consistently receives positive feedback for ease of administration and ease of setup. If you aim to reduce as much complexity as possible with your accounting processes, Freshbooks might be the tool for you.
Quickbooks vs Freshbooks: Freshbooks Dashboard Sample
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  • If you want native integrations with other tools: Freshbooks has a very easy-to-navigate integration library with the most popular tools for small business owners. When talking about CRM integrations, in particular, Freshbooks provides you with accessible out-of-the-box syncs that include tested connections with Capsule, HubSpot, and AgileCRM.

Quickbooks vs Freshbooks: Additional Features Summary Table

Here is a quick summary table to give you the gist of the differences between Quickbooks and Freshbooks:

FreshbooksQuickbooks Online
Bill PaymentNoYes
Free Version AvailableNoNo
Invoice CustomizationYesYes
Live SupportYesYes
Mobile AppsYesYes
Multiple Plans AvailableYesYes


This blog talks about the topic Freshbooks versus Quickbooks in great detail. This article can prove helpful while deciding as to which is the best tool for your enterprise: Quickbooks or Freshbooks.

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