QuickBooks has become the accounting software for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs).
As a result, their payment processing solution, QuickBooks Payments, has become somewhat of a default choice for businesses that are already locked into QuickBooks.
However, something being convenient certainly doesn’t make it the best option.
We know our discerning SMB owners and decision-makers want to discover which payment platform will get them paid quickly and with the least effort.
So for you, we’ve put together this list of 6 QuickBooks Payments alternatives that serve a variety of use cases.
Why do businesses choose QuickBooks Payments?
Released by Intuit in 1983, QuickBooks is a suite of accounting software tools built to serve SMBs. According to Intuit’s 2019 Investor Day report, QuickBooks had close to 6 million paying customers.
QuickBooks Payments is the platform’s built-in payment processing software, so it’s really no shock that the many businesses using QuickBooks have readily adopted this solution.
Let’s explore the high points of what QuickBooks Payments has to offer when it comes to getting sellers paid:
Variety of invoicing and payment options
With QuickBooks Payments, invoices can be created from scratch, via their generator, or using one of the platform’s many templates. However you choose to start, invoices are highly customizable — from looks to payment terms (PIA, COD, accumulation discounts, net terms, and more).
Sellers can schedule invoices to be sent, and they can be paid in person as well as online with a variety of payment options.
Customers can pay with credit and debit right from invoices, or make payments via ACH or eCheck.
With eChecks, payers either share their bank account info with the seller or issue a paper check, which will then need to be scanned into a terminal provided by the seller’s merchant service provider. The terminal should create a receipt that the seller then gives to the customer. This process might end up with the seller having less paper on hand, but it doesn’t do much to eliminate the handling time associated with checks.
Integration with QuickBooks and ecommerce platforms
Of course, QuickBooks Payments automatically syncs up with the rest of QuickBooks’ accounting software. This helps keep the books current, so sellers can spend less time on bookkeeping tasks.
In addition, QuickBooks Payments easily integrates with many popular ecommerce stores like Shopify, BigCommerce, WooCommerce, and more.
With this workflow, sellers can accept payments and record transactions right inside their QuickBooks account.
Pay via link
One other neat little invoicing feature from QuickBooks Payments is the ability for businesses to email or even text a payment link. Through the link, customers can quickly complete payment online.
QuickBooks Payments charges sellers (mostly) on a per-transaction basis.
The fee you pay varies widely based on which QuickBooks service you’re using — QuickBooks Online, Desktop pay-as-you-go, or Desktop monthly.
With the QuickBooks Desktop monthly plan, there is also an additional monthly fee to use Payments. And if you use the instant deposit functionality, add another 1% of the deposit amount.
To use QuickBooks Payments, you must also have a paid QuickBooks account. Depending on what kind of sale they’re running, plans start from $15 to $30 a month and go up to $100 to $200 per month, not including add-ons (as of 2022).
Why QuickBooks Payments may not be right for you
QuickBooks Payments has a lot of helpful features. However, it isn’t without its downsides. Here’s what to consider as an online vendor shopping for your best payment platform.
Friction around check payments
With QuickBooks Payments, you still have to do a lot of work to accept paper checks — receiving them, depositing them, reconciling each check to an invoice, issuing a receipt, waiting for it to clear, and destroying the check one it does so. Or, contacting the business if the check bounces back.
While it’s nice that you can (eventually) track paper check payments in your online accounting system, this process is far from friction free and is certain to create downtime between when customers pay and when you actually see the money.
If this sounds annoying or even impossible for your SMB to handle, stay tuned to learn about Streamlined’s unique solution to this issue.
Focus only on pull payments
Most payment providers support pull payments (where the seller instructs the payer to pay), such as Card, eCheck (ACH debit), etc.
However, most businesses are thinking about cash flow and don't like to be debited arbitrarily. So they prefer to push (or initiate) payments via their bill pay system or bank account. These push payments look like bank transfers (ACH credit), Wire transfers, and paper checks.
Why does this matter? Quickbooks Payments and most other providers don't handle push payments. They instead rely on a person (like an accountant) to review the bank daily and associate the payment with the invoice.
This is something Streamlined automates by offering both push and pull payments options.
Wasted time on manual reconciliation
Reconciliation — matching payments to invoices — and related tasks take accounting folks hours upon hours of time every week. Unlike the solution we’ll talk about next, QuickBooks Payments unfortunately doesn’t automate reconciliation tasks, so your team is stuck doing it the old school way.
Convoluted payment plans
The way QuickBooks Payments primarily supports itself is through processing fees collected from sellers each time they make a sale.
While that’s not a strange model for a payment platform, it’s the various fee structures and add-on charges that make their payment plans confusing.
Not only do the transaction fees change based on which QuickBooks service you’re using, but some of these services also come with a monthly fee tacked on. And, you can expect additional percentage-based fees associated with some of their add-on services.
Frankly, it’s hard to understand what you’ll be shelling out for QuickBooks Payments before you’re already in the weeds with it.
Streamlined: Smart accounts receivable management for B2B
Allow us to introduce you to the best alternative to QuickBooks Payments: Streamlined.
Streamlined brings intelligence to invoicing and accounting — getting you paid 3x faster and saving your team 20+ operational hours every week.
With Streamlined, it’s not just about all the ways you can manage invoices (though there are plenty) or all the ways you can get paid (including via truly hands-free paper checks) — Streamlined is a full accounts receivable management solution.
Here are the features our small team at Streamlined has built to serve modern, growing B2B brands.
Streamlined handles B2B payments method with ease + fewer fees
Considering their various in-person payment methods and heavily manual paper check payment process, it seems that QuickBooks Payments isn’t especially focused on helping B2B sellers succeed.
The majority — 90% — of the payments Streamlined handles use some combination of ACH and paper check.
So you better believe we have the smoothest paper check process available.
With Streamlined, your buyers send their checks to a remittance address that we manage. We upload the checks, deposit them, and make sure payments are applied to the right invoices. You never have to touch a paper check again with Streamlined.
Of course, your customers can also pay via wire, ACH, and credit card. But something that makes us special yet again in this category is the option to pass credit card processing fees through to the customer if you so choose.
Automated invoicing + reconciliation
Another area where QuickBooks Payments is lacking for B2B brands is in the automation department, especially when it comes to reconciliation.
Streamlined automatically reconciles every single payment you receive to an invoice. That means you don’t have to spend all your money on growing a bookkeeping team and all your time on accounting tasks.
And just like with QuickBooks Payments, Streamlined invoices are highly customizable and easy to schedule. You can even personalize payment reminders that automatically nudge those customers who are a little behind on payment.
No replatforming required with Streamlined
A big selling point of Payments is that it integrates with other QuickBooks products, helping you see and manage your invoices across platforms. However, it’s not the only platform offering that.
Streamlined was built to integrate seamlessly with QuickBooks. Paid invoices sent via Streamlined will automatically be reflected in Quickbooks, helping keep your books in sync and saving your accountants time.
Easy for customers, too
In addition to enabling them to pay via their preferred method, Streamlined has several more features aimed at improving the customer experience.
A customer-facing statement of account lets your buyers view all their invoices, bulk payment allows them to settle accounts by paying off multiple invoices all at once, and automatic credit tracking means no one has to remember to apply overpayment credits to future invoices.
It’s free to get started with Streamlined
Sign up now to get free access to Streamlined’s platform.
Or, you can schedule a walkthrough with one of our product experts to see how Streamlined can help manage accounts receivable so you can focus on scaling your B2B brand.
5 more QuickBooks Payments alternatives
Looking for more ideas? Here are a handful more of the top QuickBooks alternatives on the market.
Xero is a robust cloud-based accounting software suite focusing on the SMB space. With Xero, businesses can manage everything from bill payment to cash flow, expenses, invoicing, payroll, bank reconciliation, data and files, financial reporting, inventory, fixed assets, and of course payments.
Xero allows businesses to send customizable invoices and automated payment reminders via desktop and mobile app. Add a “pay now” button to your invoices to get paid faster. Connect your Xero account with tools like Stripe and GoCardless to accept debit, credit, ACH, and more. Payments made via invoices will automatically reconcile in your Xero account.
Sign up for Xero to access their payment portal. Plans range from $12/month to $65/month, not including optional add-ons (2022).
Zoho offers different software solutions for businesses — from a customer relationship management (CRM) platform to a marketing platform, IT management platform, HR platform, financial management platform, and more.
Nestled within their finance platform is Zoho Books, online business accounting software. With Zoho Books, users can send customized invoices and automated-follow ups, track deposits and retainers, manage returns and refunds using credit notes, and even charge customers in their currency while recording transactions in yours. Integrate with several payment gateways (Stripe, PayPal, Worldpay, Braintree, etc.) to accept online payments.
Excluding add-ons, monthly pricing for Zoho Books ranges from free to $275 per organization (2022).
FreshBooks is another web-based invoicing and account software platform for SMBs, serving as many as 30 million people worldwide. FreshBooks can be used to manage invoicing and payments as well as expenses, time tracking, accounting, bookkeeping, payroll, clients, and project estimates and proposals.
Use FreshBooks’ invoice generator to spin up and customize invoices, automate payment reminders and recurring invoices, import tracked time and expenses into invoices, and even charge late fees. FreshBooks enables your customers to make ACH and credit card payments directly through invoices using payment gateways like Stripe, PayPal, and FreshBooks Payments (powered by WePay).
Monthly pricing for FreshBooks ranges from $15 to a custom option (2022).
Sage bills itself as a platform providing business tools and advice in a few main areas: Small and medium businesses, construction, real estate, accounting, and bookkeeping.
Sage Accounting, more specifically, helps users send and track invoices, get paid through invoices via Stripe, connect to their bank to auto-track expenses, use their dashboard to view cash flow, and build automated workflows — such as sending recurring invoices. Payments completed through invoices are automatically reconciled, minimizing bookkeeping tasks.
Use Sage Accounting on its own for $10 to $25 per month in 2022 (depending on sales).
Stripe Payments + Invoicing
Stripe is a combo financial services/financial software company that hosts a suite of tools powering payments across the internet. According to their website, 90% of U.S. adults today have bought something from a business using Stripe.
Stripe Invoicing is a software platform that can be used to send highly-customized invoices that account for recurring payments, line items, discounts, tax rates, and more.
Because it’s built on top of the Stripe Payments platform, Invoices can be paid online in lots of different ways — credit card, ACH Direct Debit and Credit, bank transfer, EPS, iDEAL, WeChat Pay, and beyond. Auto reminders and aging reports help you get paid faster.
Stripe integrates with accounting and enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions like NetSuite, Xero, and QuickBooks to sync data and improve reconciliation and bookkeeping.
If you have access to development resources, you can tap into Stripe’s application programming interfaces (APIs) to create more custom, automated accounting workflows.
Pricing for Stripe Invoicing runs from 0.4% to 0.5% per paid invoice. That’s on top of what you will also need to pay for Stripe Payments, which is 2.9% + $0.30 per card charge (2022). Additional payment methods have additional fees, and add-ons are available. Stripe also offers customized payment packages.
Replace QuickBooks Payments with Streamlined
As a modern business owner, you know that sometimes the status quo is just begging to be disrupted.
That’s exactly how we felt when we realized QuickBooks Payments was so popular mostly because of convenience and familiarity — despite the confusing and high fees and overall slow processing time that gets sellers paid eventually.
So we decided to flip the payments industry on its head by creating Streamlined.
Streamlined is accessible, easy-to-use software with the sole mission of getting sellers paid quickly and simply. We empower you to focus on adding revenue to your business, not more and more personnel to your accounting team.