What is QuickBooks? – Extensive Discussion

what is Quickbooks

Are you thinking to enhance your small or mid-size business? You may need accounting software that can track your sales and expenses, your finances, assess daily transactions and organize administrative services. Accordingly, you have heard about “QuickBooks”. This is the first accounting software that comes into anyone’s mind after hearing “small-business accounting software”. Presently, more than 80% of the small –business market share have managed by QuickBooks accounting software. If you also want to choose accounting software that can fulfill all your accounting requirements, it will be the better option to go with.

Now, you are wondering about “What is QuickBooks?” Which version should you choose for your business?

Choose your accounting software according to your business needs:

  1. If you are a solo entrepreneur and need a cloud-based accounting software, then you should select “QuickBooks Self-Employed”.
  2. If you are running a small business and need a cloud-based accounting, then you should choose “QB Online”.
  3. Are you running a small or mid-sized business and needs a desktop accounting, then you should go with “QB Desktop”.
  4. If you want to enhance the version that has been in used, then choose “QuickBooks Apps”.

To make your search easier, we have given all the required information about “What is QuickBooks” in this blog. You may know the features, versions, or the benefits of using all versions of this software in the following blog.

What is QuickBooks?

History of QuickBooks: The accounting software “QuickBooks” had been developed in 1993 by two engineers, Scott Cook and Tom Proulx in California. Before QuickBooks, Quicken was considered as a great accounting software by many users that had been launched in 1983. In the starting, QB was not a trustable accounting software among its users but as time passed, it becomes popular due to its exciting features and functionalities. However, QB has a great feature over Quicken i.e. Double-entry system.

In 2000, Intuit had been released two more versions in the market: Basic and Pro. After that, in 2003, QB had started providing industry-specific versions.

Defining QuickBooks: This is a popular accounting software program businesses for small to mid-size businesses. This software is utilized to manage expenses and sales and helps in tracking your daily-basis transactions. In addition, you can use this software to pay bills, invoice customers and create reports planning, tax filing, planning, etc. The QB product line consists of various solutions that help anyone whether a solo entrepreneur or a mid-sized business.

Since you will get various accounting software in the market, you must choose the right one that can fulfill your business needs. Before choosing QuickBooks as your accounting software, signing up into QB for a free 30 days trial. The trial will be a well-designed version of QB. The best thing is that the credit card is not required.

Features of QuickBooks Accounting Software

QuickBooks is a popular accounting software among its users. Since it offers lots of features and functionalities to its users. We have discussed all of them below:

  1. Managing Bills and Expenses

QuickBooks accounting software automatically manages your bills and expenses by linking your credit and bank card accounts to QB so all of your expenses are categorized and downloaded. Also, you can add any cash or check transactions in this software if you want to track it.

You can also pay your bills by using QuickBooks when they’re outstanding. For instance, you can create an Accounts Payable Report to check whether the bills have been paid on time or not.  In this report, you are required to add the details of your current and past due bills. By doing so, you can be sure to quickly address any issues.

  1. Scanning Receipts

QuickBooks users can also avail the feature of “Scan Receipts”. All subscribers of QB Online will be able to download the QuickBooks App for free and take a picture of a receipt. After that, they just need to upload it to QBO. QuickBooks permits its users to attach a receipt to the corresponding banking transaction. An unlimited number of receipts can be uploaded to QB Online to along with your data. This will be a great feature for companies who have to track lots of expenses.

  1. Managing income and sales

In QuickBooks, the user can easily keep track of income and sales by creating invoices to track sales by customer. Stay on top of what customers owe you (also known as your accounts receivable balance) by reviewing your Accounts Receivable Aging Report, which includes the details of both current and past due invoices.

  1. Profit and Loss Report

QuickBooks users can easily run the Profit and loss report. This report indicates the exact position of your business and you can also know the profit earned by you (Profit = Income – Expenses). This indicates you the final net income for a week, a month or a quarter.

  1. Track Inventory

You will be able to track the product sold by your company in that software, like unit costs and on-hand amounts. Once you entered the transaction, it will automatically track and update this for you. Various reports are available to manage your inventory in QuickBooks.

If you are tracking in an Excel spreadsheet, that becomes very feasible and takes lots of time. The user can easily track inventory by using QB.

  1. Accept Online Payments

The best way to improve the cash flow of your business is to provide the option of pay invoices online to the customers. With the help of QB, the user will be able to add the Intuit Payments feature just by clicking the button.

Once the user-activated this feature, all customer invoices that you send through email consist of a “Pay Now” option. The user just needs to click on it in order to pay the invoice by using credit card or by entering their bank account information to authorize an ACH payment directly from their bank account.

The user is not restricted to pay any monthly fee to use Intuit Payments. They just need to pay per transaction as listed below:

  • Card Swiped – 2.4% plus 25 cents
  • Card Invoiced – 2.9% plus 25 cents
  • Bank Transfers (ACH) – Free
  • Card Keyed-in – 3.4% plus 25 cents
  1. Run Payroll

The main concern for any owner is to “run payroll”. If you have employees who work for your business, you cannot skip this feature. In case, you have made mistakes while calculating paychecks that can result in steep penalties. To get rid of such mistakes, QB has offer you a feature of “payroll”.

The best thingy about utilizing QuickBooks payroll is that it is integrated with QB so the financial statements will always be up-to-date as of the latest payroll run. You need to purchase the QuickBooks payroll subscription to avail the payroll feature in QB. After purchasing it, you will be able to run the latest payroll tax tables to calculate the employer payroll taxes and employee payroll taxes.

Advantages to run payroll with QuickBooks are listed as below:

  • Helps in organizing employee information.
  • You can process payroll accurately and quickly.
  • Pay employees with a check or direct deposit
  • State payroll taxes and Federal will be calculated automatically by using QB Payroll.
  • That software helps in filing in the payroll tax forms.
  • You will be able to e-pay directly from QB.

Versions of QuickBooks

There are many different versions of this accounting software available in the different markets. Intuit’s British, Canadian, and Australian provide versions of QB that support the tax calculation requirements of each region, for instance, Australia’s CST sales tax, Canada’s HST, PST or GST sales tax, and VAT for United Kingdom edition. There are four versions of QB that have been explained as below:

  1. QuickBooks Online.
  2. QB Desktop.
  3. QuickBooks Self-Employed.
  4. QB Mac.
  5. QB Point of Sale.

Let’s discuss all of the aforementioned versions in detail.

  1. QuickBooks Online

QuickBooks is cloud-based accounting software that has lots of features and functionalities for its users. This version does not need software installation and will be perfect for the businesses which do not consist of complicated invoicing. You can access the data from any PC in QB online by having an internet connection. You will get four subscription levels in this version of QuickBooks:

  • Self-employed: This will track miles, income & expenses, maximizing tax deductions, run reports and invoices and accept payments.
  • Simple Start: This helps its users in maximizing tax deductions, run reports, invoicing, tracking income & expenses, and accept payments. You can also send estimates and managing sales & sales tax in this version of QB Online.
  • Essentials: By purchasing essentials, the user will be able to track income & expenses, sales, and sales tax, send estimates, run reports, invoice and accept payments, maximize tax deductions, manage bills, tracks time and provide the feature of multiple users.
  • Plus: In plus QBO, you can track income and expenses, send estimates, run reports, track sales and sales tax, multiple users, track inventory, manage bills, invoice and accept payments, maximize tax deductions, create and manage budgets and manage 1099 contractors.

QuickBooks Online

Features of QuickBooks Online:

  1. This cloud-based accounting software helps in managing expenses.
  2. This automatically tracks inventory so you will be able to see the profitability of your business.
  3. You can pay your employees that are outstanding by a few clicks, email or via phone.
  4. QB Online also manage your vendors and bills and set up recurring payments for automatic boll pay.
  5. The user can easily pay with credit cards, debit card or bank transfer.
  6. Helps in creating your 1099 contractors.
  7. You can share your data with your accountant with a single click.
  8. Helps in taking care of your business from anywhere.
  9. You just need to snap the receipt to track it for tax preparation.
  10. The user will be able to do payroll management in QB Online.

Price of subscription levels in QuickBooks Online

Subscription Levels



$5 per month
Simple Start

$12.50 per month


$20 per month


$35 per month

Common Errors occurred while using QB Online

The following is a list of all errors that may hamper the workflow of your business while working on QB Online:

  1. The user may face login problems while using QuickBooks Online.
  2. Errors related to finance, transaction and taxation.
  3. QB Online Error 101.
  4. QuickBooks Error 102.
  5. QB sync manager error may also hinder the workflow.
  6. QB Error 401.
  7. QuickBooks Online Error 9999.
  8. QuickBooks Error 324 and 323.
  9. QB Internal Server Error 500.

  1. QuickBooks Desktop

QB Desktop is usually a popular accounting software if you are running a product-based business that has complex needs of managing inventory. This version needs a software installation and you don’t need to have the internet connection to run QB Desktop. The industry-specific desktop versions consist of customized products, services, chart of accounts, and lists for each industry. QB Desktop will be the best choice if you are doing the accounting for various companies.

QuickBooks Desktop

QuickBooks Desktop has three plans.

  • QuickBooks Pro: This plan is perfect for those who have just started their business. They can scale to Premier and Enterprise. QB Pro is a perfect solution to track sales and expenses in the various currencies. You can also view unpaid bills, purchase orders on the Bill Tracker dashboard. QB Pro Desktop is perfect for 1 to 3 users.
  • QuickBooks Premier: This will be perfect for who aimed at small businesses with industry-specific requirements such as professional services, non-profit businesses, contractors, and manufacturing. QB Premier can be scalable to Enterprise and perfect solution for 1 to 5 users.
  • QuickBooks Enterprise: This had been designed for small to mid-size businesses who require financial management software and flexible business. QB Enterprise is perfect for 1 to 30 users. With this accounting software, you can handle various locations, users, inventory workflows and transactions. This plan has three packages:

Silver: It offers advanced reporting.

Gold: It offers advanced reporting as well as enhanced payroll.

Platinum: If offers all aforementioned features along with advanced pricing.

  • QuickBooks Mac: This solution will be perfect for small utilizing MacOS. This is not scalable.

Features of QuickBooks Desktop

  1. Tracking multiple inventory: In QB Desktop, you will get two methods to track inventory, the first one is average cost and the second one is first in first out (FIFO). If you purchase the Advanced Inventory add on module, Average cost is available. However, In QB online, you can only track inventory using the FIFO method.
  2. Batch invoicing: You can avail the feature of batch invoicing in QB Desktop. If the total charges and type of service are similar, then you invoice multiple clients at the same time. For example, if you charge multiple clients a fixed monthly fee for rent or services.
  3. Industry-specific versions: QB Desktop provides industry-specific features in retail, manufacturing and wholesale, general business, contracting, professional services, or nonprofit industries.
  4. Multiple companies: To keep the accounts for multiple companies, you can use a single QB Desktop license. However, in QB Online, you require to buy a distinct subscription for each company.

You can choose QB Desktop if you have multifaceted inventory requirements or you want to keep the accounts for multiple companies.

Price of all plans in QuickBooks Desktop



QuickBooks Pro

$299.95 per year

QuickBooks Premier

$499.95 per year
QuickBooks Enterprise:




$1,155 per year

$1,1502 per year

$1,848 per year

Common Errors occurred while using QuickBooks Desktop

The user may face the following errors while working on QB Desktop:

  1. There is a problem with the payment application to a selected invoice in QB.
  2. Your computer or device is unable to place the company data file.
  3. While connecting to the QB company data file, you may face errors.
  4. A problem arises when the user is trying to connect the system to the server system.
  5. QuickBooks indicates the same tax information multiple times.
  6. When you find issues in QuickBooks while checking the product license.
  7. If the user is trying to open any program and QuickBooks file stops working.
  8. You can experience the issues when shutting down QuickBooks.
  9. When the user is getting the issue while connecting QuickBooks network.
  10. Errors due to data transfer and migration may also take place.

  1. QuickBooks Self-Employed.

QuickBooks Self-Employed is the new edition of QuickBooks accounting software in 2014. This had been specially designed for freelance individuals or self-employed. QB Self-employed is mainly a tax accounting software. Its interface is very simple and user-friendly.

QuickBooks Self employed

QuickBooks Self-Employed has three plans:

  • QuickBooks Self-Employed: This permits users to track the income and expenses, separating transactions as personal or business, helps in connecting to credit card and bank accounts, calculate quarterly taxes and track IRS schedule C tax deductions and expenses.
  • QB Self-Employed Tax Bundle: This provides the same feature as QB Self-Employed. In addition, you can also pay quarterly taxes online and export schedule C deductions to TurboTax in this plan.
  • QuickBooks Self-Employed Live Tax Bundle: This plan offers all the above-discussed benefits to its users. Additionally, you can consult a CPA whenever you need to and have a CPA at the time of re-viewing your taxes before filling.

Features of QuickBooks Self-Employed:

  1. Tracking Expense: In QuickBooks Self-Employed, the user gets the feature of tracking expenses through which he can directly import transactions form the bank account, PayPal, or Amazon in real-time. The user will be able to import bank transactions if required. This software also helps in separating business and personal expenses.
  2. Manage Fixed Assets: This feature has been recently added in QB Self-Employed. Users can keep track of their fixed assets by turning on this feature.
  3. Sales Receipts: Receipts can easily send to clients after purchasing invoices.
  4. Invoicing: QuickBooks Self-Employed users can avail the basic features of invoicing. The user will be able to invoice by the flat rate, by item, or by the hour. You will not get the inventory or contact management in this software. Nonetheless, QuickBooks Self-Employed preserves the past invoice information and permits its users to choose previous contacts and items.

Price of the plans in QuickBooks Self-Employed




QuickBooks Self-Employed

$10 per month
QuickBooks Self-Employed Tax Bundle

$17 per month

QuickBooks Self-Employed Live Tax Bundle

$35 per month

  1. QuickBooks Mac

If you want to access QuickBooks using Mac, there is a QB version for mac is also available. QB for Mac provides the same features as QB Pro for Windows. But, you will be unable to create an accountant copy. You will also get various features particular to Macs, like iCal and syncing with Mac OS address books.

QB Mac consists of a feature of Income tracker that helps you in knowing your unpaid invoices. Additionally, you can track progress and create fiscal year budgets.

QuickBooks for Mac

The price of QuickBooks For your Mac is $299.95 (One-time payment).

Features of QuickBooks Mac

  1. Batch invoicing: You can avail the feature of batch invoicing in QB Mac. If the total charges and type of service are similar, then you invoice multiple clients at the same time. For example, if you charge multiple clients a fixed monthly fee for rent or services.
  2. Chart of Accounts: The user can customize the chart of accounts in QB Mac.
  3. MultiUser Access: You will get a multi-user mode access feature in QB for Mac. Multiple users can access the software as per the requirements.
  4. Track Performance: The user can view the performance to make better and fruitful decisions for the business.
  5. Simple setup: The interface of QB Mac is very simple and easy to use. There is no probability that the user may find it difficult to access this software.

Common Errors occurred while using QuickBooks Mac

QuickBooks Mac users may face two types of errors. Go through the both of errors that can be faced by any user of QB Mac while working on it:

  1. QuickBooks Installation Error: This error appears at the time of installation of QB Mac or issues with the network linking.
  2. Multi-User Error: QuickBooks Mac users may also face multi-user error while working on this software. This happens due to issue with the internet connection or mac’s firewall settings.

  1. QuickBooks Point of Sale

Point of Sale (POS) is a cloud-based retail point of sale system perfect for numerous small businesses like small franchises, gift shops, shoe stores, and clothing. You can manage inventory along with the payment and return processing. By using QB POS, the user can keep track of items that are selling out and place orders that require to be restocked.

QuickBooks Point of Sale

You get three purchase-options in QB Point of Sale that have been listed below:

  • QuickBooks Basic: In this edition, you can avail all the basics that are required in QB Point of Sale systems for small businesses. As you enhance your business, you can track sales, inventory and accepting payments. You can also customize reporting for invoice, sales and customer purchases. After having employees, you can manage employee’s access too in this version of QB Point of sale.
  • QuickBooks Pro: This is a popular version of QB Point of Sale as compare of both of the versions. QuickBooks Pro helps in tracking work orders, multiple vendors, sales orders, UPC codes, and serial numbers. You can also get a feature of advanced reporting for all data and add pictures that benefit you in managing inventory better. Along with this, you can also make pricing and discounts through different departments.
  • Multi-Store: With this edition of QuickBooks Point of Sale, You can manage inventory of various stores at a time. You will be able to add stores, users, and customers as the business grows. By the feature of individual store location, you can analyze the inventory and sales data.

Features of QuickBooks Point of Sale:

QuickBooks POS reminds you each time the position of stocks so that you can know the time to place orders. This system has lots of features. Some of them have been discussed below:

  1. Real-time Inventory: QuickBooks Point of Sale helps you in tracking inventory. You can also verify what to maintain in the stock. It also helps you in knowing the quantity of the product. If the product quantity is low, then you need to purchase more.
  2. Customer Management: QuickBooks POS helps in building Customer Relationship Management (CRM). It will permit you to monitor sales according to the buyer. You can also customize the additional fields like birthdays, hobbies or shoe size.
  3. Tablet Functionality: By using this feature, QuickBooks POS users can directly collect the payments by the customers instead of waiting in the line.
  4. Employee Management: You can manage employee commissions and hours and sent it to QuickBooks or other accounting software by using this feature in QuickBooks Pro (version of QuickBooks POS).

Price of QuickBooks Point of Sale:

Purchase options in QuickBooks Point of Sale








Common Errors occurred while using QuickBooks Point of Sale

The user may face the following error codes while working on QB Point of Sale:

  1. QuickBooks POS Error 1328.
  2. QuickBooks POS Error 1330.
  3. QB POS Financial Exchange Error.
  4. QB Error 17603.
  5. QuickBooks Error Code 176109
  6. QB Error 100.
  7. QuickBooks Error code 175305.

After knowing “What is QuickBooks” and all about the versions of QuickBooks, you also need to aware of “QuickBooks Apps”. We would like to tell you about QB Apps. Since that can help you in saving your time. Undergo a brief explanation about the same.

QuickBooks Apps

Many users can save their precious time by using QuickBooks Apps. In all QuickBooks Apps, the information of the user can easily share. The following is a list of benefits of using QuickBooks Apps:

  • You can quickly run QB data on your mobile device anywhere and anytime.
  • Transactions can be entered from anywhere via mobile devices. You can manage sales & expenses and send reports anywhere.
  • Accounting reports can be accessed on the QB mobile app.
  • You can install the Android and the iOS mobile app before logging into the QB account.

Final Thoughts

As we see Xero, FreshBooks, Mint, Wave, Sage, Quicken, and TurboTax are competitors of QuickBooks accounting software in the market. But, QuickBooks stands alone because of its popularity among the users and great software whether you are just starting a business or expanding it. QuickBooks helps its users in managing your finances properly. You can avail latest updates time-to-time in this software that has been offered by Intuit.

We expect that the above article had given you all the required information about “What is QuickBooks?” You may have queries in your mind regarding the same or want to know more about QuickBooks. To get instant answers to your every query, you are advised to talk to one of our experts by dialing our QuickBooks Enterprise Support Phone Number 1-805-257-5030. We are here 24/7 to provide you effective solutions.