QuickBooks Online VS QuickBooks Desktop | Compare & Choose Which is Right?

There are several core differences between QuickBooks Desktop and QuickBooks Online. Exploring these key differences lets you choose the software […]

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There are several core differences between QuickBooks Desktop and QuickBooks Online. Exploring these key differences lets you choose the software according to type, size, and business requirements. It becomes a very challenging task of selecting one account system from the same company. If you are wondering to know which accounting system product to choose The below write-up will help you in understanding the major difference between QuickBooks online VS Desktop. You can easily compare each product according to user experience, reputation, pricing, features, and much more. It in-turns helps confidently making a better business decision.

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QuickBooks Online VS QuickBooks Desktop

Both QuickBooks Desktop and QuickBooks online provide amazing and strong accounting solutions however you can find key differences when it is compared. The QuickBooks Desktop comes in the list of locally installed software with a license purchase system whereas QuickBooks Online is a cloud-based system with a monthly pricing model.

QuickBooks Online VS QuickBooks Desktop Comparison Chart

PlansQuickBooks Online Have Four unique plan optionsQuickBooks Desktop Three versions, each of which has individual plan options
CostStarts at $25 per monthStarts at $399.99
UsersOne to 25 UsersThree to 30 Users
Mobile AppYesNo
IntegrationsHundreds of third-party integrations and Intuit ProductsLimited third-party integrations
Customer SupportBased on user planBased on version and plan
QuickBooks Online VS Desktop

Most Significant Differences Between QuickBooks Online & QuickBooks Desktop:

After analyzing the major components of both programs according to pricing, features, ease of use, reviews, integrations, and user complaints here listed some differences between QuickBooks Desktop and Online:

One of the essential differences is QuickBooks Desktop is a license-based pricing structure whereas QuickBooks online has a monthly SaaS. You can purchase a QuickBooks desktop license for three years or do annual payments for the updates instead of monthly payments.

The major difference between these two products is that QuickBooks Online is a cloud-based program running in the Internet-enabled system and QuickBooks Desktop needs to be downloaded and installed on the system. It signifies that the QB desktop version does not need the internet to work and users are unable to access it remotely. You need to pay additional charges for hosting.

When we talk about the security factor, Intuit takes care of the cloud-based QuickBooks online. However QuickBooks Desktop is a locally installed system that is more secure.

QuickBooks online version is capable of having more automation options as a comparison to QuickBooks Desktop. QBO depends upon cloud technology which provides ease of managing books quickly. Moreover, you can sync the content in real-time.

QuickBooks Online permits up to 25 users according to the pricing plan. The additional user license for QuickBooks Desktop Pro cost is $299 which seems slightly expensive. The system contains up to 3 users. QuickBooks Desktop Premier permits five users & QB enterprise users to allow 40 users.

Both QuickBooks Online and Desktop have several same features in which QuickBooks desktops contain more developed features.

Only online users can use the QuickBooks capital using QuickBooks Online.

Which is more Suitable for Your Business QuickBooks Online or QuickBooks Desktop?

You need to choose the accounting system according to your business.

When to Select QuickBooks Online?

  • You require a system that is simple to learn and use
  • You want to access the accounting remotely
  • If you need more time-saving automation, integrations & real-time sync features along with banks
  • If you want payment processing integrations to pay invoices to the customer directly
  • You require accessing capital lending and international invoicing

Why do You Need to Select QuickBooks Desktop?

  • If you searching for the locally installed accounting system
  • You require industry-specific options of QuickBooks Desktop Enterprise or QB Desktop premier
  • You want sale orders and need to smooth complex accounting

QuickBooks Online Overview:

QuickBooks Online is a cloud-based accounting system that was released in 2004. It is designed especially for small and medium-sized businesses. But the QuickBooks Online advanced plan helps in creating a scalable system for the scalability of the large-scale business. You will get an amazing robust feature set, online payroll, strong accounting, attractive invoices, and more than 600 integrations. The QuickBooks Online is easier to learn and user-friendly than QuickBooks Desktop. QuickBooks Online can work anywhere with an internet connection. Moreover, there are mobile apps that help in better business management.

  • More pricing than other SMB products
  • Customer support
  • Fewer options than Desktop
  • No sales orders
  • Monthly pricing
  • Cloud-based
  • Simple to use
  • 650+ integrations
  • Strong features
  • Built-in lending

QuickBooks Desktop Overview:

QuickBooks Desktop was launched in 1992. It acts as the primary option for accountants worldwide. QuickBooks Desktop is frequently referred to as QuickBooks Desktop Pro, even though there are three QuickBooks products: QuickBooks Pro, QuickBooks Desktop Enterprise, and QuickBooks Desktop Premier. The key difference between the three products is that Pro is developed for small businesses, Enterprise for large, and Premier for medium businesses. Every plan is designed according to the users and features.

QuickBooks desktop version provides extensive options and accounting tools including job costing, expense tracking, job costing, positive customer reviews, and more than 200 integrations. This version is only available on the Windows Operating system. So if you are a Mac user then you require searching for QuickBooks for Mac for an option labeled locally-installed Mac-based QuickBooks.

  • Windows-only
  • More-priced license structure
  • Customer support
  • No remote access or mobile apps
  • Less automation than QBO
  • Potentially more secure
  • Strong features
  • Traditional accounting
  • 200+ integrations

Compare Features of QuickBooks Desktop Pro VS QuickBooks Online:

QuickBooks Online and QuickBooks Desktop provide an array of features. They both share the same options; however, more developed features are available in QuickBooks Desktop except invoicing. The QuickBooks Online has primary options including international invoicing, mobile apps, and lending international invoicing. Below jotted down options is a breakdown of the specific features advantageous for you in comparing QuickBooks Online and QuickBooks Desktop worth to the business.


Both Intuit products use double-entry accounting protocols and having accrual & cash-basis accounting. Each system provides an in-depth chart of accounts, bank reconciliation, accounts receivable, journal entries, accounts payable, and the general reports required to run a company. Although QuickBooks Desktop is recognized as a better reporting system and helps in ease of managing complex tasks.

One of the key differences is that QuickBooks Online now provides a bookkeeping service named QuickBooks live bookkeeping; permits you professional support payments from certified CPAs and QuickBooks Online accountants. When it comes to small business owners QuickBooks Online helps in achieving a much-needed peaceful environment for accounts management and filing their taxes.


When it comes to invoicing the QuickBooks online is the best choice. It helps in the ease of creating professional-appearance customer invoices. The designs are transparent and modern, the customer can easily choose and understand the invoices. Below is an example of the appearance of the QuickBooks online invoice:

The invoices of QuickBooks Desktop appear outdated, cluttered, and complex to customize. It looks like:

invoicing the QuickBooks online

We already discussed the better template designs in QuickBooks Online, there is better automation available as below:

  • Sending invoice reminders to late-paying customers
  • Recurring invoices
  • Batch invoicing and progress invoicing
  • Auto-schedule invoices
  • A client portal for online payments
  • Invoice tracking to see what client has viewed received or paid their invoice
  • It allows translating invoices into six different languages if needed especially for international customers

QuickBooks Desktop provides you set recurring invoices and also monitor the invoices, however, if you’ll miss out on several modern cloud-related automation that here is the list of options available in QuickBooks Online.


QuickBooks Online provides up to 80 reports which may vary with the selected plan, meanwhile QuickBooks Desktop pro offers 130 reports. If you purchased a license of QuickBooks Desktop enterprise and QuickBooks Desktop Premier you can opt for more reports. The basic reports like a profit and loss report, a balance sheet, or cash flow statements you can find in both QuickBooks Online and QuickBooks Desktop.

Contact Management:

During QuickBooks Desktop and QuickBooks online provides contact management, only QuickBooks Desktop provides you better management of contacts and tracking leads.


Neither QuickBooks Desktop pro nor QuickBooks online has built-in payroll. You can add QuickBooks Online payroll starting at $45/month. You can go through the Intuit Online payroll review for in-depth information. Moreover, you can buy a payroll for QuickBooks Desktop Pro. Although, if you select to buy QuickBooks Desktop enterprise, it let you access built-in enhanced payroll.

Sales Orders:

In case the business requires sales orders then QuickBooks Desktop is more preferable. The Sales order is available in QuickBooks desktop products at present.


We are aware of a new lending service introduced in QuickBooks named QuickBooks Capital. This service provides financial solutions for small business owners who require working capital for better cash flow management. QuickBooks Online contains this feature.

Let’s talk about Industry-Specific Features:

The most significant aspect of QuickBooks Desktop Premier & QuickBooks Desktop Enterprise is that you can access the Industry-specific software version instead of the standard version. Here are the industries:

  • Retail
  • Nonprofit
  • Accountant
  • General contractor
  • Manufacturing & wholesale
  • Professional services

These versions provide business owners more options and reports regulated towards their industry. Here are the below options:

Mobile Apps:

QuickBooks Pro does not provide the mobile applications being locally-installed system, the QuickBooks Online offer features advantageous with both Android and iOS apps.

QuickBooks Online Mobile Apps

QuickBooks Online VS QuickBooks Desktop Pricing:

QuickBooks Pro and QuickBooks Online have different pricing structures. QuickBooks Online provides a monthly SaaS pricing structure. You can get four pricing plans ranging between $25-$180/month. QuickBooks Desktop pricing varies according to a different version of the system. QuickBooks Pro is adjusted towards medium industry business and has cost $466.99 for a single user. QuickBooks Enterprise is specially allotted for small enterprises or large businesses and starts at $1,655 annually.

Simple StartEssentialsPlusAdvanced
Track income & expensesTrack income & expensesTrack income & expensesTrack income & expenses
Invoice & accept payments Invoice & accept payments Invoice & accept paymentsInvoice & accept payments
Maximize tax deductions Maximize tax deductions Maximize tax deductions Maximize tax deductions
Run general reports Run general reports Run general reports Run general reports
Capture & organize receipts Capture & organize receipts Capture & organize receipts Capture & organize receipts
Track miles Track miles Track miles Track miles
Manage cash flow Manage cash flow Manage cash flow Manage cash flow
Track sales & sales tax Track sales & sales tax Track sales & sales tax Track sales & sales tax
Send estimates Send estimates Send estimates Send estimates
Manage 1099 contractors Manage 1099 contractors Manage 1099 contractors Manage 1099 contractors
Includes 3 usersIncludes 5 users Includes 25 users
Manage & pay billsManage & pay bills Manage & pay bills
Track timeTrack time Track time
Track inventoryTrack inventory
Track project profitabilityTrack project profitability
Business analytics & insights
Batch invoices & expenses
Customize access by role
Exclusive Premium Apps
Dedicated account team
On-demand online training
Automate workflows
Restore company data

However, if you purchase QuickBooks Premier License or QuickBooks Pro, you can get access to three years. We can’t say which product is less expensive as there are several variables.

  • When there is better QuickBooks Online Pricing:

In case there are multiple users you can use phone support and live bank feeds. The monthly pricing structure operates better for small a business that does not have the cash flow for high-priced licensing or annual subscriptions.

  • When QuickBooks Desktop Pricing is superior:

If you using QuickBooks pro for up to 3 years and do not have any extra users, this feature will save valuable money. Meanwhile, you can add the additional costing in QuickBooks Desktop.

QuickBooks Desktop Pricing

We highly recommended ruminate the numbers to determine whether the desktop version of QuickBooks or the online version is correct for the particular business:

Ease of Use:

The QuickBooks online version is much simpler to use than the QuickBooks desktop version. One of the most frequent complaints about QuickBooks desktop is its expensive learning curve. Accountants provide discovering QuickBooks pro and Premier to be more traditional to access, you don’t require becoming a professional bookkeeper or accountant to learn QuickBooks online.

Customer Service & Support:

Both QuickBooks Pro & Premier and QuickBooks Online have particularly poor customer support. However, Intuit has worked on updating its help desk centers to provide user-friendly services. There is no email support available although the customer service of QuickBooks online is slightly better there is no need of paying any additional charges for support. Intuit is continuously committed to improving customer service.

Major Complaints and Reviews of QuickBooks Desktop and QuickBooks Online:

Both accounting programs have their positive and negative reviews, however, when comparing the QuickBooks Online and QuickBooks Desktop, QuickBooks Online has more complaints. Below listed are general criticisms:

  • Slow running time
  • A lot of bugs
  • Unreliable customer support
  • Limited mobile app

Several users also complain about QuickBooks online in regards to quality and features. Although many reviews are positive in QuickBooks Online getting 4.5/5 Stars according to system advice, and QuickBooks Online is praised for its ease of use, time-saving automation, feature selection, and integrations. The below general complaints associated with QuickBooks Pro include:

  • Poor customer service
  • Steep learning curve
  • Forced upgrades

Yet, most users still monitor QuickBooks Desktop fortunately and the product gets high status on the customer review websites. The system receives 4.5/5 according to 1200+reviews on system advice & based on trust Radius there are 8.3/10 reviews. The QuickBooks Pro is recognized for its ample features, reporting, strong accounting, and reliability. All-inclusively, QuickBooks reviews are more commendatory; however, both products’ users have positive and bad things to say about the same.

Integrations Available in QuickBooks Desktop VS QuickBooks Online:

QuickBooks Pro and QuickBooks online provide several helpful add-ons products and advantageous integrations. Meanwhile, QuickBooks Online provides more than 650 integrations to QuickBooks pros beyond 200+ integrations. Additionally, having more integration than QuickBooks Online contains more integration. The QuickBooks online integrations provide more business requirements and contain several payment gateway options, however, QuickBooks Desktops lets payment gateways creating it complex for the modern merchant to process accepting invoice payments.

Comparing QuickBooks Online VS QuickBooks Desktop Comparison: The final concluding:

Both QuickBooks Desktop and QuickBooks Online are competent software with vigorous accounting options. Each system contains highs and lows:

Users get several great features in QuickBooks online using the mobility option of a cloud-based system. QuickBooks Online is simple to use, have more integrations, automation, best invoicing, and core built-in lending feature.

The disadvantages are the lack of lead management, sales order, and other complications that loyal Desktop users may lack (including customization built-in calendar, letter templates, and spell checker).

QuickBooks Desktop users get many developed accounting tools across the market. The system provides comprehensive secure options, unique touches like sales orders, lead management, and industry-specific versions. The disadvantage of the QuickBooks Desktop is it does not come with QuickBooks Online mobility, has less automation, and fails in lending payment gateway integrations. Eventually, the actual deciding factors are a particular business type, size, and requirements. Whatever you select the comprehensive reviews can assist you in creating informed decisions while hunting for the actual accounting software.

Accounting Professionals, CPA, Enterprises, Owners
Accounting Professionals

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+1-800-596-0806 or chat with experts.

Frequently Asked Questions (Faqs)

What’s the major Difference Between QuickBooks Online and QuickBooks Desktop Pro?

QuickBooks Online acts as a software labeled as a service accounting program i.e. hosted online. Whereas QuickBooks Desktop is a locally installed accounting system with an annual subscription pricing structure (although you can make a “one-time” purchase lasting three years). Moreover, both systems provide strong accounting in which QuickBooks Desktop offers amazing customizable options whereas QuickBooks Online has easy-to-learn and automation features.

Is QuickBooks Desktop better than online?

QuickBooks Online is suitable for business owners requiring a simple-to-use cloud-based system that includes anywhere online access, several integrations, and mobile apps with other programs. The QuickBooks Desktop is preferable for small to large-sized businesses with complex accounting and customizable requirements.

Is QuickBooks Online or QuickBooks Desktop cheaper?

QuickBooks Online has a less expensive monthly cost and is economical for massive employees using the program. QuickBooks Desktop Pro is low-priced if you do not require additional users. In case if you plan for using the program up to three years before upgrades. QuickBooks does not afford lump sum subscription payments. The monthly subscriptions for the QuickBooks online may be simpler for some small businesses suitable to a financial situation.

How do I Switch from QuickBooks Desktop to QuickBooks Online?

It is pretty easier moving from QuickBooks Desktop to QuickBooks Online. You can simply locate the Company tab in the top option and choose a button named Export file to QuickBooks Online. It is recommended to save a company file backup of QuickBooks Desktop if there encounter any errors.

Can I Switch from QuickBooks Online to Desktop?

You can start switching QuickBooks online to Desktop. An Intuit QuickBooks has been analyzed their online systems to switch from QuickBooks Online to Desktop is not as simple. Locate the gear icon named Settings and hit Export data. Click on the reason for leaving. Hit on the link named Moving to QuickBooks.

Features of Dancing Numbers for QuickBooks Desktop









Supported Entities/Lists

Dancing Numbers supports all QuickBooks entities that are mentioned below:-

Customer Transactions

Receive Payment
Credit Memo/Return Receipt
Sales Receipt
Sales Order
Statement Charge

Vendor Transactions

Bill Payment
Purchase Order
Item Receipt
Vendor Credit

Banking Transactions

Journal Entry
Transfer Funds
Bank Statement
Credit Card Statement
Credit Card Charge
Credit Card Credit

Employee Transaction / List

Time Tracking
Employee Payroll
Wage Items


Inventory Adjustment
Inventory Transfer
Vehicle Mileage

Technical Details

Easy Process

Bulk import, export, and deletion can be performed with simply one-click. A simplified process ensures that you will be able to focus on the core work.

Error Free

Worried about losing time with an error prone software? Our error free add-on enables you to focus on your work and boost productivity.

On-time Support

We provide round the clock technical assistance with an assurance of resolving any issues within minimum turnaround time.



Importer, Exporter & Deleter

*See our Pricing for up to 3 Company Files

$199/- Per Year

Pricing includes coverage for users
  • Services Include:
  • Unlimited Export
  • Unlimited Import
  • Unlimited Delete


Accountant Basic

*See our Pricing for up to 10 Company Files.

$499/- Per Year

Pricing includes coverage for users
  • Services Include:
  • Importer,Exporter,Deleter
  • Unlimited Users
  • Unlimited Records
  • Upto 10 companies


Accountant Pro

*See our Pricing for up to 20 Company Files.

$899/- Per Year

Pricing includes coverage for users
  • Services Include:
  • Importer, Exporter, Deleter
  • Unlimited Users
  • Unlimited Records
  • Up to 20 companies


Accountant Premium

*See our Pricing for up to 50 Company Files.

$1999/- Per Year

Pricing includes coverage for users
  • Services Include:
  • Importer, Exporter, Deleter
  • Unlimited Users
  • Unlimited Records
  • Up to 50 companies

Dancing Numbers: Case Study

Frequently Asked Questions

How and What all can I Export in Dancing Numbers?

You need to click "Start" to Export data From QuickBooks Desktop using Dancing Numbers, and In the export process, you need to select the type you want to export, like lists, transactions, etc. After that, apply the filters, select the fields, and then do the export.

You can export a Chart of Accounts, Customers, Items, and all the available transactions from QuickBooks Desktop.

How can I Import in Dancing Numbers?

To use the service, you have to open both the software QuickBooks and Dancing Numbers on your system. To import the data, you have to update the Dancing Numbers file and then map the fields and import it.

How can I Delete in Dancing Numbers?

In the Delete process, select the file, lists, or transactions you want to delete, then apply the filters on the file and then click on the Delete option.

How can I import Credit Card charges into QuickBooks Desktop?

First of all, Click the Import (Start) available on the Home Screen. For selecting the file, click on "select your file," Alternatively, you can also click "Browse file" to browse and choose the desired file. You can also click on the "View sample file" to go to the Dancing Numbers sample file. Then, set up the mapping of the file column related to QuickBooks fields. To review your file data on the preview screen, just click on "next," which shows your file data.

Which file types are supported by Dancing Numbers?

XLS, XLXS, etc., are supported file formats by Dancing Numbers.

What is the pricing range of the Dancing Numbers subscription Plan?

Dancing Numbers offers four varieties of plans. The most popular one is the basic plan and the Accountant basic, the Accountant pro, and Accountant Premium.

How can I contact the customer service of Dancing Numbers if any issue arises after purchasing?

We provide you support through different channels (Email/Chat/Phone) for your issues, doubts, and queries. We are always available to resolve your issues related to Sales, Technical Queries/Issues, and ON boarding questions in real-time. You can even get the benefits of anytime availability of Premium support for all your issues.

How can I Import Price Level List into QuickBooks Desktop through Dancing Numbers?

First, click the import button on the Home Screen. Then click "Select your file" from your system. Next, set up the mapping of the file column related to the QuickBooks field. Dancing Numbers template file does this automatically; you just need to download the Dancing Number Template file.

To review your file data on the preview screen, just click on "next," which shows your file data.

What are some of the features of Dancing Numbers to be used for QuickBooks Desktop?

Dancing Numbers is SaaS-based software that is easy to integrate with any QuickBooks account. With the help of this software, you can import, export, as well as erase lists and transactions from the Company files. Also, you can simplify and automate the process using Dancing Numbers which will help in saving time and increasing efficiency and productivity. Just fill in the data in the relevant fields and apply the appropriate features and it’s done.

Furthermore, using Dancing Numbers saves a lot of your time and money which you can otherwise invest in the growth and expansion of your business. It is free from any human errors, works automatically, and has a brilliant user-friendly interface and a lot more.

Why should do you change the Employee status instead of deleting them on QuickBooks?

If you are unable to see the option to terminate an employee on your list of active employees on the company payroll, this mostly implies that they have some history. Thus, if you change the employee status instead of deleting it on QuickBooks, the profile and pay records remain in your accounting database without any data loss in your tax payments.

Is it possible to use the Direct Connect option to sync bank transactions and other such details between Bank of America and QuickBooks?

Yes, absolutely. You can use the Direct Connect Option by enrolling for the Direct Connect service which will allow you access to the small business online banking option at bankofamerica.com. This feature allows you to share bills, payments, information, and much more.

Why should do you change the Employee status instead of deleting them on QuickBooks?

If you are unable to see the option to terminate an employee on your list of active employees on the company payroll, this mostly implies that they have some history. Thus, if you change the employee status instead of deleting it on QuickBooks, the profile and pay records remain in your accounting database without any data loss in your tax payments.

What are the various kinds of accounts you could access in QuickBooks?

QuickBooks allows you to access almost all types of accounts, including but not limited to savings account, checking account, credit card accounts, and money market accounts.

Get Support

Bulk import, export, and deletion can be performed with simply one-click. A simplified process ensures that you will be able to focus on the core work.

Worried about losing time with an error prone software? Our error free add-on enables you to focus on your work and boost productivity.

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