Quickbooks vs. Quicken: What's the Difference? (2024)

QuickBooks vs. Quicken: An Overview

QuickBooks and Quicken are two of the most widely used financial management tools in the world. Both programs were part of Intuit (INTU), but Quicken was sold to H.I.G. Capital in 2016. Both QuickBooks and Quicken have unique feature sets designed for different uses. Read on to find what each tool offers a user and to figure out which tool may be right for you.

Key Takeaways

  • QuickBooks and Quicken are financial management tools owned by Intuit and H.I.G. Capital, respectively.
  • QuickBooks is a full-featured business and management suite with all the tools that a small business would need, but it's also costlier.
  • Quicken helps families and individuals track account balances, investments, budgeting, and other expenses. Though it is useful for small businesses, it is more limited; however, it costs less than QuickBooks.

What Is QuickBooks?

QuickBooks is a full-featured business and financial management suite complete with tools for accounting, inventory, payroll, tax filing, invoicing, bank account tracking and reconciliation, expense management, budgeting, payment processing, and accounts receivable and accounts payable management.

That feature set is not a complete list of what QuickBooks can do. It can also plug into many additional software tools for added features. Essentially, QuickBooks is the Swiss Army knife of business financial tools—it can do just about anything you might need for your business. But there are some features that many businesses will never need, and the high price tag for QuickBooks Professional may be a reason to look elsewhere.

If you run a small or medium-size business and want to ensure you can track all financial information and create reports summarizing any aspect of your business, QuickBooks will not disappoint. Just be aware that there is a learning curve when starting out, and not all features are intuitive when you get the program up and running for the first time.

QuickBooks also offers both a desktop version for a fixed fee and an online version accessible through your web browser, tablet, or smartphone for a monthly or yearly subscription. Some features, such as payroll management and payment processing, incur an additional fee regardless of which version you choose.

What Is Quicken?

What QuickBooks offers for the small business, Quicken offers for individuals and families. Quicken tracks your account balances, transactions, investments, personal budgeting, loans, and any other part of your personal financial life. The Home & Business version includes the ability to track rental properties and small businesses in addition to your personal information.

These features allow you to turn your computer into your financial command center with updated information from each bank, investment, and credit account downloaded right into Quicken. You can also track investments using cost basis to best understand the tax implications of buying, selling, and how you are building your portfolio.

The business tools are much more limited than those inQuickBooks but work just fine for a family with a few rental properties or an individual who owns a side hustle business or sole proprietorship. Quicken is a desktop product. If you want an online version, look to Mint.com.

Key Differences

If you just want to track your personal financial information, Quicken has all of the features you could want. You can track everything related to your family’s finances in one place without much extra hassle.

If you have a small business, you have a tougher decision to make. If you are an independent online freelancer, Quicken’s features may be enough for your business. But if you need something more robust, QuickBooks is the clear winner in terms of business features.

Make a decision that you can stick with because switching is difficult or even impossible. Converting data from QuickBooks to Quicken is not possible. Converting from Quicken to QuickBooks is complex and difficult.

The hardest part is finding the right balance between cost and features because QuickBooks offers more for business, but it also costs more. In some cases, QuickBooks may offer more than necessary, but in most, QuickBooks is better for business financial management than Quicken is.

If you are looking solely for your business, QuickBooks is clearly the best option of these two, but there are many other online accounting options to choose from as well.

What Is the Difference Between QuickBooks and Quicken?

QuickBooks focuses on the accounting processes of small businesses, whereas Quicken focuses on the finances of individuals and families. QuickBooks also offers an online version of its software that many businesses can use, while Quicken focuses on providing local software that individual computers can access.

What Is a Quicken Alternative?

Personal finance is a popular niche for software-as-a-service (SaaS), so Quicken has seen the rise of many competitors over the past 10 years. A true alternative to Quicken gives individuals the ability to manage finances in a single place by helping them manage their budget and control expenses. Some of the most popular Quicken alternatives include You Need a Budget (YNAB), Personal Capital, Mint, and Tiller.

What Is a QuickBooks Alternative?

Accounting software and other financial software focused on the small business niche have also grown in recent years. True alternatives will provide the ability to manage a business’s accounting books, send payments, create and send invoices, collect payments, and budget. Some of the most popular alternatives to QuickBooks include Xero, FreshBooks, Sage, Zoho, and Wave.

Quickbooks vs. Quicken: What's the Difference? (2024)


How is Quicken different than QuickBooks? ›

QuickBooks focuses on the accounting processes of small businesses, whereas Quicken focuses on the finances of individuals and families. QuickBooks also offers an online version of its software that many businesses can use, while Quicken focuses on providing local software that individual computers can access.

Why did Intuit get rid of Quicken? ›

The program did everything, from tracking investments to balancing a checkbook. But other alternatives emerged, and Quicken wasn't able to innovate fast enough to keep up with the times. As Quicken revenue declined, Intuit sold the company in 2016 to H.I.G. Capital.

What are the cons of using QuickBooks? ›

Cons of using QuickBooks

Lack of key reports outside of accounting (e.g. reporting and transparency of your business health). Lack of direct professional support. Limitations with file size and data, as well as the number of users. Not suitable for businesses with robust inventory management needs.

Can I use Quicken for bookkeeping? ›

If people who run small businesses or work as freelancers want to keep their bookkeeping in order, then the dedicated accounting software will perfectly cope with this task. You may use Quicken to solve your financial problems; the program helps to store business documents, manage assets and create tax reports.

Can I use QuickBooks instead of Quicken? ›

QuickBooks has more features for small businesses, such as the ability to track inventory and create invoices. Ultimately, the best accounting software for you depends on your specific needs and budget. If you're managing your personal finances, choose Quicken. QuickBooks is best for managing your small business.

Who is QuickBooks best for? ›

QuickBooks offers six accounting products, but one of its online accounting plans will be the best choice for most small businesses. Freelancers and independent contractors may opt for simpler options, while larger small businesses might turn to QuickBooks products with advanced inventory, sales and reporting features.

Is QuickBooks becoming obsolete? ›

The short answer: no. The long answer: Intuit are sunsetting some versions of QuickBooks Desktop (QBD), and it might be possible for some users to keep accessing it —though it is not recommended. From May 31st, 2023, Intuit will stop supporting these QuickBooks Desktop 2020 versions: QuickBooks Desktop Pro 2020.

Why don t large companies use QuickBooks? ›

QuickBooks is designed as a generic accounting and bookkeeping platform for a wide variety of businesses, and it fulfills its purpose. However, the software lacks the functionality and features that businesses need to increase their efficiency, profitability, and scalability.

Why do accountants not like QuickBooks Online? ›

QBO doesn't offer the features you need.

This is its own number because this is such a common rejection of the software. As mentioned QBO is not built to handle everything. Construction accounting, job costing, and inventory management are several common limitations. The apps were designed for this purpose.

What are the benefits of using Quicken? ›

Try for 30 days risk-free *
  • See all your financial accounts in a single dashboard.
  • Automatically downloads & categorizes transactions.
  • Get a personalized budget automatically generated based on income, expenses & savings.
  • Create & track your progress toward short & long-term savings goals.

How hard is it to convert from Quicken to QuickBooks? ›

Converting your data from Quicken to QuickBooks is a complex process and if you require assistance, you will need to contact QuickBooks Support. Because Quicken and QuickBooks are now separate companies (QuickBooks is owned by Intuit), Quicken Support is unable to assist with this process.

Why is Quicken so popular? ›

Where Quicken excels is its ease of use. It's easy to generate all kinds of reports about your business, from banking to spending to net worth. It also lets you split receipts across multiple spending categories—so if you did some personal and business shopping on the same trip, you can separate these expenses easily.

Can Quicken produce a balance sheet? ›

Quicken Home & Business offers several reports that can help you keep track of your business. You can create a Profit and Loss Statement, a Balance Sheet, a Payroll Report, A/R and A/P reports, and reports that track expenses and income by project.

Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Ouida Strosin DO

Last Updated:

Views: 6145

Rating: 4.6 / 5 (56 voted)

Reviews: 87% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Ouida Strosin DO

Birthday: 1995-04-27

Address: Suite 927 930 Kilback Radial, Candidaville, TN 87795

Phone: +8561498978366

Job: Legacy Manufacturing Specialist

Hobby: Singing, Mountain biking, Water sports, Water sports, Taxidermy, Polo, Pet

Introduction: My name is Ouida Strosin DO, I am a precious, combative, spotless, modern, spotless, beautiful, precious person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.