Accounting Software Review: Consumer Reports

One week from today is the official filing deadline for getting your taxes done this year. We may be out of time to offer you any real assistance ahead of this fast-approaching date, but that doesn’t mean we can’t dispense some help for the next go-round. If one day in the not-so-distant future, you’re at the helm of a business of your own—preferably a franchise operation—here is a quick rundown of accounting software choices to help you balance your books. It’s FranNet’s version of Consumer Reports. 

Typing in a Google search for “best small business accounting software” will definitely return a mention of the industry heavyweight. That would be Intuit’s QuickBooks, one of the most popular on the market. There is, however, competition from smaller players which offer pretty good bang for your buck, too. These include brands such as Zoho Books, Xero, and FreshBooks. Let’s delve into some of their key features.


This brand is the 800-lb. Gorilla in the group and probably enjoys the widest name recognition in the industry. Built for small to midsize businesses in mind (like franchises!), QuickBooks prides itself on “…offering customizable reporting tools that help users analyze data and make informed business decisions. The solution integrates with Microsoft Excel to expand its reporting capabilities,” as reported on the website

Zoho Books

Zoho bills itself as a simple and easy to use business option, created for the non-CPA end user. It’s user dashboards are customizable and simple to set up. The software allows up to 10 user accounts on one license and allows you to create different workflows based on a specific need. That’s something that can come in handy for franchisees.


If your franchise is a one-man band (such as a consultancy), FreshBooks might be the better route for you to go for your accounting software needs. It’s specifically designed for the self-employed and makes sending invoices a snap. But just like the other examples, FreshBooks also allows you to track your billable time, manage any expenses, and view forecasted financial reports. The brand states that, on average, their clients save 16 hours a month. Which amounts to two business days’ worth of time!


Xero is online accounting software which boasts over 1 million subscribers. In addition to handling every traditional accounting function for small businesses, Xero offers seamless integration with over 600 existing business apps such as PayPal and Squarespace. According to their website, Xero is based on the principle that all small businesses (and franchises!) are highly sensitive to shifts in their balance sheet and cash flow. The ability to monitor financial performance in real-time and plan ahead is crucial, making Xero a viable option for end users.

You may not currently be in the market for small business accounting software, but FranNet can help you get your journey started. It starts with a simple phone call and visit for a no-cost, no obligation meeting. We’d love nothing more than to get you to the point where making a decision about which accounting software is your best option becomes a reality.

In the meantime, don’t forget to file!

Let’s chat! There’s a local FranNet consultant right in your market who knows that market inside and out – knows the personality of the market – knows the competitive landscape. FranNet has a great track record of assisting individuals on their path to entrepreneurship, and one of our franchise experts would love to provide you with guidance free of charge. Sound like something you might be interested in? Get started here and find your local consultant right now!

Apr 10, 2018