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Compare QuickBooks
Online to Desktop

Compare QuickBooks
Online to Desktop

QuickBooks Online vs. Desktop

Over 2.3 million Desktop customers have made the switch to QuickBooks Online.1

QuickBooks Online

Freedom to work from anywhere, on any device.

QuickBooks Desktop Plus

Work on a dedicated machine only.

Flexibility to work where you want**

Access your books from any device (PC, Mac, mobile, tablet) and collaborate with your team across locations without any software to install.

Cloud access included

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Additional fees apply

Live collaboration

Work across offices, homes, and teams with multiple users—including your accountant—at the same time with QuickBooks Online.

Collaborate across multiple users, devices, and locations

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In-person on one device only

Multiple users included

5 users are included with QuickBooks Online Plus and 25 with QuickBooks Online Advanced. Additional fees apply for each Desktop user.

Number of licenses vary depending on your subscription

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Up to 25 users

Additional fees per user

Time-saving automation

Leverage cutting-edge tech that makes it easier to create and manage tasks like recurring transactions and automated reports, while you maintain control.

Recurring tasks, customized bank connections,** 
and more

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Robust functionality

Limited functionality

Mobile app included**

The QuickBooks mobile app syncs with your QuickBooks Online account for a seamless experience wherever you work.

Work from your smartphone or tablet

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Limited functionality

Security done for you**

Count on the latest security updates and have peace of mind knowing your data is protected.

Worry less about unforeseen events

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Protected data, automatic data backups

Self-managed

3rd party app integration**

QuickBooks Online lets you easily integrate with popular cloud software like Shopify, PayPal, and hundreds more to build your own ecosystem.

Integrate with popular cloud-based apps

Robust, 750+ apps

Limited, 200+ apps

Streamlined interface

QuickBooks Online gives you a modern, streamlined, intuitive design that simplifies tasks and makes it easier to avoid mistakes.

Intuitive design that simplifies tasks

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Most current

Older

QuickBooks Live**

For an additional fee, you can hire a QuickBooks-certified bookkeeper to do your books for you. Unavailable for desktop.

QuickBooks-certified accounting support

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Additional fees apply

Not supported

HR and benefits through Online Payroll**

Provide team benefits to attract skilled applicants, retain your best employees, and help them grow with you.

Offer employee benefits like 401(k)s, healthcare, and workers’ comp

checkmark

Built-in HR and benefits services, Fees apply for 401(k), health insurance**

401(k) only,* Additional fees apply

Automated time tracking**

Get automatic time tracking that syncs seamlessly with Online Payroll. Easily manage your team and approve payroll when you're ready.

Make manual time tracking a thing of the past

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Seamlessly syncs and included in QuickBooks Online Payroll**

Additional fees apply

GoPayment app and card reader**

Get paid fast and run your business freely—in store, on site, or on the go with the QuickBooks Online GoPayment app and card reader.

Do business, wherever there's business

checkmark

Cards, eChecks, ACH, plus Apple Pay, PayPal, and Venmo**

Cards, eCheck, and ACH payments**

Flexibility to work where you want**

Access your books from any device (PC, Mac, mobile, tablet) and collaborate with your team across locations without any software to install.

Cloud access included

QuickBooks Online

Freedom to work from anywhere, on any device.

checkmark

QuickBooks Desktop Plus

Work on a dedicated machine only.

Additional fees apply

Live collaboration

Work across offices, homes, and teams with multiple users—including your accountant—at the same time with QuickBooks Online.

Collaborate across multiple users, devices, and locations

QuickBooks Online

Freedom to work from anywhere, on any device.

checkmark

QuickBooks Desktop Plus

Work on a dedicated machine only.

In-person on one device only

Multiple users included

5 users are included with QuickBooks Online Plus and 25 with QuickBooks Online Advanced. Additional fees apply for each Desktop user.

Number of licenses vary depending on your subscription

QuickBooks Online

Freedom to work from anywhere, on any device.

checkmark

Up to 25 users

QuickBooks Desktop Plus

Work on a dedicated machine only.

Additional fees per user

Time-saving automation

Leverage cutting-edge tech that makes it easier to create and manage tasks like recurring transactions and automated reports, while you maintain control.

Recurring tasks, customized bank connections,** 
and more

QuickBooks Online

Freedom to work from anywhere, on any device.

checkmark

Robust functionality

QuickBooks Desktop Plus

Work on a dedicated machine only.

Limited functionality

Mobile app included**

The QuickBooks mobile app syncs with your QuickBooks Online account for a seamless experience wherever you work.

Work from your smartphone or tablet

QuickBooks Online

Freedom to work from anywhere, on any device.

checkmark

QuickBooks Desktop Plus

Work on a dedicated machine only.

Limited functionality

Security done for you**

Count on the latest security updates and have peace of mind knowing your data is protected.

Worry less about unforeseen events

QuickBooks Online

Freedom to work from anywhere, on any device.

checkmark

Protected data, automatic data backups

QuickBooks Desktop Plus

Work on a dedicated machine only.

Self-managed

3rd party app integration**

QuickBooks Online lets you easily integrate with popular cloud software like Shopify, PayPal, and hundreds more to build your own ecosystem.

Integrate with popular cloud-based apps

QuickBooks Online

Freedom to work from anywhere, on any device.

Robust, 750+ apps

QuickBooks Desktop Plus

Work on a dedicated machine only.

Limited, 200+ apps

Streamlined interface

QuickBooks Online gives you a modern, streamlined, intuitive design that simplifies tasks and makes it easier to avoid mistakes.

Intuitive design that simplifies tasks

QuickBooks Online

Freedom to work from anywhere, on any device.

checkmark

Most current

QuickBooks Desktop Plus

Work on a dedicated machine only.

Older

QuickBooks Live**

For an additional fee, you can hire a QuickBooks-certified bookkeeper to do your books for you. Unavailable for desktop.

QuickBooks-certified accounting support

QuickBooks Online

Freedom to work from anywhere, on any device.

checkmark

Additional fees apply

QuickBooks Desktop Plus

Work on a dedicated machine only.

Not supported

HR and benefits through Online Payroll**

Provide team benefits to attract skilled applicants, retain your best employees, and help them grow with you.

Offer employee benefits like 401(k)s, healthcare, and workers’ comp

QuickBooks Online

Freedom to work from anywhere, on any device.

checkmark

Built-in HR and benefits services, Fees apply for 401(k), health insurance**

QuickBooks Desktop Plus

Work on a dedicated machine only.

401(k) only,* Additional fees apply

Automated time tracking**

Get automatic time tracking that syncs seamlessly with Online Payroll. Easily manage your team and approve payroll when you're ready.

Make manual time tracking a thing of the past

QuickBooks Online

Freedom to work from anywhere, on any device.

checkmark

Seamlessly syncs and included in QuickBooks Online Payroll**

QuickBooks Desktop Plus

Work on a dedicated machine only.

Additional fees apply

GoPayment app and card reader**

Get paid fast and run your business freely—in store, on site, or on the go with the QuickBooks Online GoPayment app and card reader.

Do business, wherever there's business

QuickBooks Online

Freedom to work from anywhere, on any device.

checkmark

Cards, eChecks, ACH, plus Apple Pay, PayPal, and Venmo**

QuickBooks Desktop Plus

Work on a dedicated machine only.

Cards, eCheck, and ACH payments**

Let us teach you QuickBooks Online with a free 1-hour personalized setup call*

Explore the advantages of moving to Online

84% of customers who switched from QuickBooks Desktop said they would recommend QuickBooks Online to a friend or colleague.2

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Freedom to work where you want

Stay in sync with the QuickBooks mobile app and send invoices right from your smartphone.** You can also run reports from your phone and get mobile alerts for key events—like when invoices are paid.

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Security for more peace of mind

With QuickBooks Online, get the latest security capabilities and know your data is protected without downloading and installing product updates.**

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Features built to boost productivity

Skip the manual entry by linking your business bank and credit card accounts to QuickBooks Online.** Run custom reports for a quick view of insights that matter most to you. And simplify sales tax with automatic sales tax calculations.

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Migration tools & support to get started

Move from any Desktop version with a new and improved migration process. Once your data is online, hop on a free 1-hour personalized setup call. We'll review your migration and make sure you can handle your everyday tasks.*

Not sure what you need?

We’ll help you find a plan that fits.

Woman providing migration support to a QuickBooks Online customer

Get migration tools and support

A new and improved migration process gives you even more ways to move online. Move from any version of QuickBooks Desktop, and only migrate the data that matters most to you.

See why businesses are switching from Desktop to QuickBooks Online

See why businesses are switching from Desktop to QuickBooks Online

QuickBooks Online customer Mike M., RideAway Adventures
“The move from QuickBooks Desktop to QuickBooks Online has elevated our company in such a big way. It’s saved me time, money, and effort.”
Mike M., RideAway Adventures

All respondents received remuneration.

Frequently asked questions

We’re here when you need us

Talk to sales

Give us a call if you need help picking a QuickBooks product.



Call 1-800-595-4219

Mon-Fri, 5 AM to 6 PM PT

Sat, 7 AM to 4 PM PT

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Visit our support hub

Find help articles, video tutorials, and connect with other businesses in our online community.

Let us teach you QuickBooks Online with a free
1-hour personalized setup call*


Call 1-800-595-4219 to learn more.

How can we help?
Talk to sales 1-800-595-4219

Monday - Friday, 5 AM to 6 PM PT

Get product support