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Top 5 Alternatives To Xero

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Xero is one of the leaders in cloud accounting, and while this software has sprinted ahead of most other accounting programs, it isn’t running alone in the race. Currently, several other competitors that give Xero a run for its money.

Whether you are a current Xero user in need of a change or are just starting your accounting software search, we’re here to help. We’ve compiled five of the top Xero alternatives that are comparable to Xero in terms of accounting, features, business size, mobility, and more. We’ll compare each program so you can make the best decision possible for your business.

If Xero’s steep learning curve is keeping you from loving this software, download our free How To Set Up Your Xero Account guide before throwing the baby out with the bathwater. We break down the setup process and basics tasks into easy-to-follow steps.

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CompanyBest ForNext StepsBest For
QuickBooks Online

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Best Overall Xero Alternative
Best Overall Xero Alternative

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QuickBooks Desktop Pro

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Best Locally-Installed Xero Alternative
Best Locally-Installed Xero Alternative

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FINSYNC

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Best For Cash Flow Management
Best For Cash Flow Management

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Sage Business Cloud Accounting

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Best For Usability & Affordability
Best For Usability & Affordability

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Zoho Books

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Best Customer Support
Best Customer Support

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Read more below to learn why we chose these options.

Overview Of Xero

Xero was launched back in 2006. This cloud-based software has almost the same feature capabilities as a traditional program like QuickBooks Pro without the limitations that come with being locally-installed. Xero offers unlimited users, something almost unheard of in the accounting world. To top it off, this accounting solution boasts strong accounting, 700+ integrations, and positive customer reviews. The five scalable price plans range from $9/mo – $60/mo.

Xero is ideal for medium-large businesses in need of a robust accounting system and multiple users.

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Offers strong accounting, advanced features, and scalable pricing to grow with your business

Pros

  • Unlimited users
  • Robust feature set
  • Strong accounting
  • Scalable pricing
  • Cloud-based
  • Strong user permissions
  • Multi-currency support
  • 700+ integrations
  • Incredible security

Cons

  • Moderate learning curve
  • Poor invoicing templates
  • Tedious CSV imports and setup
  • Mobile apps could be improved

When It’s Time To Leave Xero Behind

While Xero has a lot going for it, Xero isn’t the perfect accounting software for everyone. Here are some of the reasons to leave Xero and find a better accounting software fit for your business:

  • Xero is too difficult to learn
  • You need better invoicing
  • You don’t want to pay the new pricing structure
  • You want better customer support
  • You want better mobile apps

If this sounds like your situation, take heart — there are plenty of great Xero competitors that can help alleviate these accounting stresses.

The Best Xero Competitors

Xero is a popular accounting software option for mid-sized businesses, but it isn’t for everyone. Here are the top Xero alternatives, including QuickBooks Online, QuickBooks Desktop, Zoho Books, and more.

1. QuickBooks Online

QuickBooks Online



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Best for small to large-sized businesses in need of strong accounting, advanced features, and the best overall small business accounting software.

QuickBooks Online is cloud-based software with over 2.5 million users and a long history of strong accounting. The software is relatively easy to use, offers over 500+ integrations, and has solid invoicing automations and customizations. The software boasts an incredible number of features, including project management, inventory, contact management, and tax support. There’s even a built-in lending service called QuickBooks Capital.

QBO does receive a fair number of user complaints and its customer support could be improved, but despite these drawbacks, this accounting solution still has a lot going for it.

QuickBooks Online is ideal for small to medium-sized businesses in need of strong accounting, integrations, and features, and the recent addition of the new QuickBooks Online Advanced plan has made QBO suitable for larger businesses as well. This app is not a good fit for companies with more than 25 users.

Pros

  • Strong accounting
  • Advanced features
  • Great invoicing
  • Good mobile apps
  • 650+ integrations

Cons

  • Limited customer support
  • Occasionally unintuitive

Pricing

QuickBooks Online offers three pricing plans ranging from $25/mo – $70/month with the QuickBooks Online Advanced plan coming in at $150/month. The larger the plan, the more features/users you have access to.

Features

quickbooks online dashboard

QuickBooks Online has an impressive number of features. The software offers almost the exact same features as Xero, but with better invoice templates and customizations. One of the best parts about QBO’s features is the number of time-saving automations available — like the ability to autoscheule invoices in advance.

Here’s a list of some of QuickBooks Online’s most notable features:

  • Invoicing
  • Estimates
  • Contact management
  • Expense tracking
  • Bank reconciliation
  • Accounts payable
  • Chart of accounts
  • Inventory
  • Project management
  • Time tracking
  • Up to 80 reports
  • Budgeting
  • Tax support
  • Multi-currency support

How QuickBooks Online Compares To Xero

In many areas, QuickBooks Online and Xero are neck and neck. They both offer hundreds of integrations. They both have strong security. Their feature sets are nigh identical. Both offer contact management, invoicing, fixed asset management, inventory, check printing, class tracking, budgeting — you get the picture.

Xero comes with better contact management and unlimited users, but it also comes with a steeper learning curve. QuickBooks Online, on the other hand, has better invoice templates, more invoice automations, and better mobile apps. QuickBooks Online is also easier to use than Xero and offers a built-in lending solution called QuickBooks Capital.

QBO’s feature set and usability make it a good alternative for users who want still want strong accounting and ample features without such a steep learning curve.  Learn more about how QuickBooks Online compares to Xero in our detailed Xero VS QuickBooks Online post for more details.

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2. QuickBooks Pro

QuickBooks Desktop Pro



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Best for small businesses searching for a locally-installed accounting solution with traditional accounting and advanced features.

Over 1.5 million people use this product — and for good reason. QuickBooks Pro offers incredibly robust accounting and provides more features than almost any other accounting software at its level. The software is not SaaS; it is installed on a single computer, old-school-style (although you can purchase hosting at an additional cost). While we know that many users prefer the cloud, this locally-installed software is the only one of the five apps in this article that actually beats out Xero in terms of features. And even though it’s locally-installed, QB Pro still offers almost 200 integrations.

QuickBooks Pro is ideal for small to medium-sized businesses that need strong accounting, but don’t require a lot of users or mobility. The software does have quite a steep learning curve so it may be difficult for users with no previous accounting experience.

Pros

  • Strong accounting
  • Advanced features
  • Numerous integrations
  • Advanced reporting

Cons

  • Steep learning curve
  • Limited users
  • PC-only

Pricing

A QuickBooks Pro license costs $399.95 (thought Intuit often offers some sort of discount). This license is good for three years, after which Intuit drops all support for that version. You can also purchase a yearly subscription — QuickBooks Pro Plus — for $299.95/year, which includes unlimited customer support and data backups. There are some extra costs, like customer support, so be sure to read the Complete Guide To QuickBooks Desktop Pricing to see exactly how much the software will cost you.

Features

quickbooks pro review

QuickBooks Pro has an incredible number of features that are well-developed and offer a lot of functionality and customizability. Here’s a sampling of what QuickBooks Pro has to offer:

  • Invoicing
  • Estimates
  • Contact and vendor management
  • Expense tracking
  • Mileage deductions
  • Bank reconciliation
  • Chart of accounts
  • Accounts payable
  • Inventory
  • Project management
  • Time tracking
  • 130 reports
  • Budgeting
  • Letter templates
  • Calendar & to-do Lists
  • Tax support

How QuickBooks Desktop Pro Compares To Xero

When it comes down to it, QuickBooks Pro offers more comprehensive accounting and more features than Xero, but the software does have a steeper learning curve (so if you thought Xero’s learning curve was steep, QB Pro is probably not the software for you). The software could also be potentially less expensive than Xero if you purchased it once every three years.

Xero does offer more users, better customer support, and mobility. It also receives far more positive reviews than QuickBooks Pro (though there are plenty of happy QuickBooks pro users out there).

QuickBooks Pro is a good alternative for users looking for a locally-installed alternative to Xero with more features. Learn more about how QuickBooks Pro compares to Xero in our detailed QuickBooks VS Xero post to learn more.

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3. FINSYNC

FINSYNC



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Best for small to large businesses in need of cash flow management and business analytics.

This startup was launched in 2014 but already puts up some strong competition in the cloud-accounting sphere. FINSYNC was designed to help businesses get their finances in sync. While the software doesn’t have as many features as Xero and only has four integrations, it is the only app on this list to offer cash flow management and business trends and analytics. It also offers a unique payment processing lockbox. The software also has unlimited users, is easy to use, and offers good customer support.

FINSYNC isn’t as tried and true and Xero or QuickBooks, but it’s earned a spot in this article because of its unique cash flow and payment offerings and its usability. FINSYNC is ideal for small to medium-sized businesses, though large businesses could benefit from it as well.

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Good customer support
  • Strong cash flow & analytics
  • Unlimited users

Cons

  • Limited features
  • No mobile apps
  • Limited integrations

Pricing

FINSYNC offers a financing plan for $0/month, a payments plan for $10/month, and a full accounting plan for $45/month. There’s a $95/month plan as well that give syou access to all FINSYNC services including payroll and project management.

Features

FINSYNC cash flow management

FINSYNC’s features aren’t quite as advanced as Xero’s but you’ll find the basics that you need to manage your accounting, as well as some advanced financial management features that can help you forecast and control your business’s cash flow.

  • Invoicing
  • Estimates
  • Contact management
  • Expense tracking
  • Bank reconciliation
  • Chart of accounts
  • Inventory
  • 8 reports
  • Budgeting
  • Cash flow management
  • Business analytics

How FINSYNC Compares To Xero

Xero and FINSYNC are similar in many ways. Both have ample features, capable accounting, unlimited users, and a similar target audience. However, FINSYNC sets itself apart with cash flow management, unique payment management, analytics, and built-in lending. The software is also easier to use and has an attractive UI.

Xero still beats this startup in a few areas. Xero has 65 reports to FINSYNC’s eight and 700+ integrations to FINSYNC’s three (all third-party payment processors). Xero has received more positive reviews as well (due in part to how much longer the software has been around). But despite these areas, FINSYNC is more than worth looking into as a Xero alternative.

FINSYNC is ideal for businesses looking for easy to use software with good customer support and cash flow management.

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4. Sage Business Cloud Accounting

Sage Business Cloud Accounting



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Best for small to medium-sized businesses looking for affordable, easy to use software. Ideal for UK businesses.

Previously known as Sage One, Sage Business Cloud Accounting is an easy to use cloud-based software solution. Sage Business Cloud Accounting has a solid UI with strong accounting and invoicing features, as well as competitive pricing and 30+ integrations. The software is missing key features like project management, time tracking, or payroll, but it does have a ton of time-saving automations and a unique cash flow forecaster.

The software is ideal for small businesses that want an affordable alternative to Xero; it is particularly well-suited for UK businesses.

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Affordable
  • Strong inventory
  • Suited for UK users

Cons

  • Limited features
  • No payroll

Pricing

Sage Business Cloud Accounting offers two pricing plans ranging from $10 – $25/month. The larger plan gives you more features and unlimited users and payments are made monthly.

Features

sage business cloud accounting dashboard

Despite missing some key features like project management and time tracking, Sage Business Cloud Accounting still has some of the best inventory and automation capabilities. Here are some of the best features Sage Business Cloud Accounting has to offer:

  • Invoicing
  • Estimates
  • Contact management
  • Expense tracking
  • Accounts payable
  • Inventory
  • 23 reports
  • Cash flow forecasts

How Sage Compares To Xero

Sage Business Cloud Accounting is more affordable and easier to use than Xero. It offers the same unlimited users and a unique cash flow forecaster. Xero still beats Sage out in terms of integrations and features as Sage does not offer time tracking, project management, or payroll.

However, Sage could still be an affordable, easy to use alternative to Xero. The software is ideal for small businesses and UK-based businesses that don’t want or need the complexity of Xero.

Get Started with Sage Business Cloud Accounting

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5. Zoho Books

Zoho Books



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Best for small businesses in need of a cheaper accounting solution with strong features and international invoicing.

Time to shift gears a bit. This final Xero alternative doesn’t cater to the same audience. This program was created for small businesses only (not medium-large businesses). This final option is for businesses that want a more affordable or easier to use option than Xero and who might not need the complexity of Xero.

Launched in 2009, Zoho Books is a complete accounting package with some of the best invoicing on the market. Overall, Zoho Books is incredibly affordable, offers good customer support, has amazing mobile apps, and even offers international invoicing.

Zoho Books is ideal for small to medium businesses looking for strong accounting software and that value usability. Zoho Books has almost all of the features you’ll find in QuickBooks or Xero; the only things the software doesn’t offer are payroll or budgeting. Users in need of built-in payroll may want to look elsewhere.

Pros

  • Excellent customer support
  • Numerous features
  • Great mobile apps
  • Affordable
  • International invoicing

Cons

  • Limited integrations
  • No payroll

Pricing

Zoho Books offers three pricing plans ranging from $9 – $29/mo. The larger the plan, the more features, contacts, and users you have access to. Each plan comes with unlimited invoicing and estimates. Plans are paid monthly and cap out at nine users, although more can be added for an additional cost.

Features

zoho books dashboard

Zoho Books offers an impressive number of features. Recent updates have propelled it to the level of more advanced accounting solutions like QuickBooks Online and Xero, so you get many of the same features for a much more affordable price. Here are some of Zoho Books’ features:

  • Invoicing
  • Estimates
  • Contact management
  • Expense tracking
  • Mileage deductions
  • Accounts payable
  • Chart of accounts
  • Fixed asset management
  • Inventory
  • Time tracking
  • Project management
  • 50+ Reports
  • Tax support
  • Multi-currency support
  • Invoice in multiple languages

How Zoho Books Compares To Xero

Not only is Zoho Books far easier to use than Xero, but it also offers almost all of the same complex features, including bank reconciliation, a chart of accounts, invoice automations, and even check printing. In addition, Zoho Books has more affordable pricing plans than Xero and much better customer service.

Xero still has more developed accounting and features, as well as a larger selection of integrations. Xero also offers payroll and budgeting, but for users who don’t need these features, Zoho Books could be a viable, more affordable option.

Zoho Books is ideal for small businesses looking for an affordable, capable accounting solution with international invoicing and good customer support. It is not ideal for businesses in need of built-in payroll.

Get Started with Zoho Books

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Choosing The Best Xero Competitor For Your Small Business

Xero is an impressive accounting solution, and it’s not easy finding software of the same caliber geared toward the same target audience (medium to large-sized businesses). However, there are a few accounting programs that give Xero a run for its money. We’ve highlighted the best Xero alternatives on the market so that, no matter what size of business you run, you can find software that offers strong accounting and impressive features.

So how do you decide which of these five options is right for you?

If you currently use Xero, one of the first questions you should be asking yourself is: what isn’t working with my accounting software? If you can pinpoint the issue(s) you’re having, it’ll be much easier to determine which product can help you solve said issue(s).

If you haven’t committed to the software yet and are still exploring your options, you should ask yourself the following questions:

  • Which features do I need for my business to succeed?
  • How much can I afford to spend on accounting software?
  • Do I want a cloud-based or locally-installed program?
  • What is my level of accounting experience?

The answers to these questions will help you pinpoint which option might be the best choice. My biggest recommendation is to take advantage of free trials before committing to any solution. You won’t know if you like it until you try it. Read our Complete Guide to Choosing Online Accounting Software for extra help.

In Summary: The Best Xero Competitors

  1. QuickBooks Online: Best Overall Xero Alternative
  2. QuickBooks Desktop Pro: Best Locally-Installed Xero Alternative
  3. FINSYNC: Best For Cash Flow Management
  4. Sage Business Cloud Accounting: Best For Usability & Affordability
  5. Zoho Books: Best Customer Support
Chelsea Krause

Chelsea Krause

Content Strategist - Accounting & eCommerce
Chelsea Krause is a writer who has specialized in accounting for over three years and is a QuickBooks Certified User. She has a BA in English & Creative Writing from George Fox University and studied at the University of Oxford as well. She has been quoted in Forbes and her work appears in Startup Nation, Small Business Bonfire, and Women on Business.
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