Gusto VS QuickBooks Comparison 2023
Despite an overwhelming overlap in features, Gusto and QuickBooks Online Payroll differ significantly in other ways, including pricing, ideal business size, and more.
|Pricing||$40/month + $6/person to $80/month + $12/person||$45/month + $6/person to $125/month + $10/person|
|Next Step||Start Trial
It’s challenging to determine which payroll software comes out on top in the Gusto vs. QuickBooks Online Payroll debate, as both options are among the best payroll software solutions on the market. Fortunately, this means that you’ll have a solid payroll solution, regardless of which option you go with.
Despite an overwhelming overlap in features, Gusto and QuickBooks Online Payroll differ significantly in their plans, pricing, ideal business, and standout features. Understanding these differences will help you determine which payroll software solution makes the most sense for your business.
Keep reading for an in-depth comparison of Gusto and QuickBooks Online Payroll, including a feature breakdown, pricing comparison, and much more.
Table of Contents
- Gusto VS QuickBooks Comparison Summary
- What’s The Difference Between Gusto Payroll & QuickBooks Payroll?
- Gusto VS QuickBooks Pricing
- Is Gusto Or QuickBooks Better For Paying Contractors?
- Gusto VS QuickBooks Payroll Features
- Which Payroll Software Do Users Like Better: Gusto Or QuickBooks?
- Which Is Best For My Business Needs: QuickBooks Or Gusto?
- QuickBooks VS Gusto Comparison: The Bottom Line
- Gusto Payroll VS QuickBooks Payroll FAQs
Gusto VS QuickBooks Comparison Summary
Businesses considering Gusto vs. QuickBooks Online Payroll should know that Gusto works best for newer companies that need full-service payroll processing and HR resources. QuickBooks’ strong accounting, time-tracking, and health insurance options are great for companies with lots of hourly employees who work in multiple states.
Before we go for a deep dive into how Gusto and QuickBooks Online’s price points and features compare, let’s zoom out for a bird’s-eye view of their biggest selling points and ideal audience.
Gusto Quick Overview
- Full-service payroll and worker’s comp across all pricing plans
- Lower base starting prices than QuickBooks Online Payroll
- Simple interface that’s easy to get started with
- Third-party integrations
- Direct-deposit times slower than QuickBooks Online
- Lackluster reporting and time-tracking capabilities compared to QuickBooks
- Health benefits are limited to certain US states
Gusto is a cloud-based payroll and HR platform that aims to make it easier for businesses to focus on growth and scaling. With its seamless combination of benefits administration, 401(k)s, HR, and onboarding services packaged into a software platform that’s valid for use in all 50 states, it’s easy to see why Gusto has gained such a large user base.
Some of Gusto’s most robust features, such as time-tracking capabilities and an on-call center with HR professionals, are limited to its higher-level (read: more expensive) plans. However, the solution still offers strong full-service payroll processing and employee management at every level.
QuickBooks Payroll Quick Overview
- Fast direct deposit compared to Gusto
- Mobile app to run payroll while on the go
- Health insurance benefits are valid in all 50 US states
- Superior time-tracking and recording options
- Weak benefits options in relation to Gusto
- Spotty track record for customer service
- No third-party integrations when using payroll as a standalone service
QuickBooks Online Payroll makes it particularly easy for businesses to track and provide benefits for employees who operate in multiple states. Unlike with Gusto, businesses can use QuickBooks Payroll to cover employees with health insurance benefits in any US state. QuickBooks Online Payroll has highly robust time-tracking tools that businesses can use for non-salaried, hourly employees.
QuickBooks Online Payroll is most attractive to businesses that don’t want to focus so much on their HR-related processes and services as much as they do on their accounting-specific needs. QuickBooks plans focus predominantly on payroll processing and speedy direct-deposit capabilities, making the most sense for companies with dispersed personnel and varying pay runs and pay dates.
What’s The Difference Between Gusto Payroll & QuickBooks Payroll?
When comparing Gusto Payroll vs. QuickBooks Payroll, Gusto offers more HR resources and support, starts at a lower price, and allows for third-party integrations. QuickBooks Payroll has stronger built-in time tracking than Gusto, more robust reporting, and can process payroll faster with next-day and same-day payroll run options.
While both QuickBooks and Gusto offer health benefits, QuickBooks’ health benefits are available across all 50 states. In contrast, Gusto’s are only available in 38 states and DC.
Both Gusto & QuickBooks Offer…
- Direct deposit
- Auto-scheduled payroll
- Unlimited payroll runs
- New-hire reporting
- Health benefits
- Employee management
- Time tracking
- HR support
- Payroll tax calculation, filing, and payment
- 401(k) retirement accounts
Only Gusto Offers…
- Contractor-only plan
- Included W-2 and 1099 filing
- Integration with third-party software
- Local tax filing and payment on all plans
- Gusto Wallet and employee debit card
Only QuickBooks Payroll Offers…
- Health benefits across all 50 states
- Next-day payroll processing
- Implementation support
- Mobile app to run payroll
Gusto VS QuickBooks Pricing
|Gusto||QuickBooks Online Payroll|
|Price||$40/month + $6/person to $80/month + $12/person||$45/month + $6/person to $125/month + $10/person|
|Number Of Users||650+ users||150 user cap|
Gusto’s full-service payroll pricing plans start at $40/month with a $6 monthly per person fee. QuickBooks Online Payroll pricing plans start at $45 per month with a $6 per-employee monthly fee.
A few add-on payments are available for both QuickBooks Online Payroll and Gusto pricing plans. Gusto members can purchase add-ons for certain benefits, such as 401(k) retirement plans and savings accounts. QuickBooks Online Payroll users can also purchase add-on features, including 1099 e-filing and multistate payroll processing.
Is Gusto Or QuickBooks Better For Paying Contractors?
While you pay contractors using both Gusto and QuickBooks Online Payroll, only Gusto has a dedicated Contractors-Only plan at a lower price and simpler feature set. Additionally, Gusto’s Contractors-Only plan doesn’t limit the number of contractors your business can pay, while QuickBooks Payroll caps out at 150 contractors paid.
That said, if you have a smaller business that only pays contractors, QuickBooks Payroll could be worth it, as it offers faster payments, a mobile payroll app, and a more robust reporting system than Gusto.
Gusto VS QuickBooks Payroll Features
|Feature||Gusto||QuickBooks Online Payroll|
|Payroll Processing||(Two or next-day)||(Next or same-day)|
|Integrations||(QuickBooks apps only)|
|Payroll Tax Support||(Full support)||(State and federal tax support)|
|Benefits Administration||(38 states and DC)||(All 50 states)|
|Time Tracking||(Plus plan and up)|
|Mobile Payroll App|
|HR Support||(Premium plan)||(Premium plan and up)|
The features that come with both QuickBooks Payroll and Gusto include all the essentials you’d likely expect from a modern, cloud-based payroll solution. QuickBooks has recently expanded the options it provides for reports and features. However, Gusto also offers a large number of features, such as an employee portal, HR resources, and options for employee management. Take a look at the main features you can expect with QuickBooks Online Payroll and Gusto.
(Want to take a deeper dive into the world of QuickBooks Payroll and Gusto? Our QuickBooks Online Payroll review and Gusto review provide an in-depth look at both software options, including a pricing breakdown, features explanations, and much more.)
Which Payroll Software Do Users Like Better: Gusto Or QuickBooks?
Both QuickBooks Payroll and Gusto are generally highly regarded by their users. QuickBooks Payroll is loved for its integration with QuickBooks Online, onboarding support, and ease of use, especially for seasoned QuickBooks Online users. However, user complaints cite QuickBooks’ fees, tax reporting errors, and poor customer service as major pain points.
Gusto user reviews frequently praise the software’s ease of use, benefits integration, and tax support features. Gusto has relatively few negative user reviews levied against it, most of which are concerned with the software’s limited reporting capabilities and poor scalability for larger, growing businesses. Many complaints surround Gusto’s payday emails containing detailed earnings information, as users believe it’s a significant privacy issue.
Which Is Best For My Business Needs: QuickBooks Or Gusto?
Gusto and QuickBooks Online Payroll overlap each other in more ways than one. But at the end of the day, whether you choose QuickBooks Online Payroll vs. Gusto for your business depends on your immediate and long-term focus and what you’ll be using the software for most often.
Choose QuickBooks Online Payroll If…
- You already use QuickBooks for your functional accounting and want to integrate it with Inuit Online Payroll
- You want faster direct deposit options for your employees
- You mostly employ W-2 employees for whom you want low per-employee fees
Choose Gusto If…
- You staff fewer than 1,000 employees and need to streamline their payroll system
- You employ mostly 1099 contractors who work in multiple states
- You value top-notch, easy-to-reach customer service support representatives
QuickBooks VS Gusto Comparison: The Bottom Line
Gusto’s seamless payroll processing, new hire onboarding, and HR and benefits management services make it one of the most robust and affordable software solutions for small businesses. Its transparent pricing model and structure provide clients peace of mind no matter which plans they choose. And Gusto’s 401(k) and savings plans are easily accessible through the software’s benefits options.
QuickBooks Online Payroll’s value is most apparent in its solid health insurance options and integration with other QuickBooks tools. If you and your team already use QuickBooks and want options for health insurance benefits, it probably makes sense to use QuickBooks Online. QuickBooks Online Payroll may also be the more affordable option if you don’t staff any independent contractors and are looking to grow your business past 100 employees.
Ultimately, you can make your decision as easy as possible by simply assessing how many staff you employ and determining whether you need to scale your HR and benefits options. Businesses that require reliable and customizable HR resources and payroll processes should consider purchasing a plan with Gusto. If your company staffs more than 100 employees, especially if they’re working in different states and need access to health insurance benefits, then QuickBooks Online Payroll is likely your best bet.
While QuickBooks and Gusto are great payroll software solutions, they may not be the best fit for your business. If you’re still not sold on either solution and want something that seems custom-tailored to your business’s payroll needs, check out the best small business payroll software options on the market this year.