Best Xero Alternatives 2023 (Top 10 Similar Competitors)
Xero is a popular name in the accounting software industry, praised for its scalable nature, a large selection of features, and ease of use.
If you're on the quest for the best Xero alternatives, the good news is there are many Xero competitors available on the market. Even though Xero is an excellent tool, it has some downsides. For example, many of the advanced features are reserved for the most expensive plan, and there's no live phone support.
Let's look at the top 10 cloud-based Xero alternatives and discuss their best features and pricing plans.
Top 10 Xero competitors with similar products
Here are the software like Xero that we think are the best Xero alternatives. Although they are all fairly similar, some Xero competitors will be better suited to your circumstances than others, so read more about the Xero competition below.
Free plan; $15/month
Best free alternative
Free; involves transaction fees
$30/month (50% discount for the first three months)
Access to expert accountants
Free plan; £24.50+VAT/month
Free plan; $4.99/month
Freelancers and independent contractors
$10/month for the first six months, then $20/month
Here’s our full list of the best Xero alternatives 2023:
In the following section, we’ll explore the best Xero alternatives and mention what makes each tool a suitable replacement. You’ll find out which tool is most similar to Xero and which of the tools you should opt for if you're a freelancer, independent contractor, or a small business.
We also have a detailed Xero review where you can get a deeper look into the software’s pros and cons.
Here are 10 good alternatives to Xero:
1. Zoho Books (best Xero alternative overall)
Upon first look, Zoho Books looks similar to Xero. It comes with all the features small and medium-sized companies need, like invoicing, expense tracking, estimates, online payments, automated workflows, and advanced reporting.
Zoho Books is better than Xero because it comes with a free plan, unlike Xero, which only has a 30-day trial. Zoho lets you choose between five monthly plans, and Xero has three. Zoho Books is the best alternative to Xero because it has more payment gateway options than other accounting tools.
The software lets you accept payments from payment gateways such as Paypal, Stripe, Square, Worldpay, Forte, and WePay. It's also one of the best solutions for selling physical products, as it comes with robust inventory management and sales features.
If you're working with an accountant, you can give them access to the system so they can balance your books and prepare your taxes. You can even collaborate with clients directly on invoices and estimates, as Zoho has a client portal functionality. Zoho Books offers nonprofit companies a 15% discount on the original pricing.
Zoho Books is best for:
Standard: $15 /month billed annually
Professional: $40 /month billed annually
Premium: $60 /month billed annually
Elite: $120 /month billed annually
Ultimate: $240 /month billed annually
Go to Zoho Books
2. Wave (best free Xero alternative)
Wave is one of the best free Xero alternatives as its basic software’s completely free. Paid features include payroll and customer payments.
The free plan lets you send invoices, recurring invoices, and payment reminders. You’ll also get unlimited income and expense tracking, unlimited bank and credit card connections, and unlimited partners, collaborators, or accountants.
Another thing Wave has in its favor is the incredible ease of use. If you’re an absolute beginner with no experience in accounting systems, Wave is a great app to start. The software has a clean and user-friendly interface that makes it easy to navigate the system. There’s also a dedicated invoicing mobile app to keep you going on the go.
Wave is best for:
Small business entrepreneurs
Invoicing features: $0
Accounting features: $0
Banking features: $0
Credit card payments: starts at 2.9% + $0.6 per transaction
Bank payments: 1% per transaction
Payroll: starts at $20
Advisors: starts at $149
Go to Wave Accounting
3. QuickBooks Online (most similar to Xero)
QuickBooks Online is one of the most famous names in the business accounting software industry. We voted it the most similar to Xero for several reasons.
Like Xero, QuickBooks Online is also an excellent choice for SMBs and growing companies as it has an extensive suite of features, ranging from bill management and project profitability to inventory management and cash flow planner.
In terms of pricing, QuickBooks is slightly more expensive than Xero, although it offers a promotional 50% discount on all plans for the first three months. Both software solutions don't have a free plan.
Where QuickBooks Online is even better than Xero is that it belongs to a larger family of QuickBooks products that all work seamlessly with one another, including QuickBooks Online Accountant, QuickBooks Online Payroll, and QuickBooks Payments.
QuickBooks Online is best for:
Income and payments
Cash flow planner
Simple Start: $15 /month for the first three months, then $30
Essentials: $27.50 /month for the first three months, then $55
Plus: $42.50 /month for the first three months, then $85
Advanced: $100 /month for the first three months, then $200
Self-employed for freelancers: $7.50/month for the first three months, then $15
Go to QuickBooks Online
4. Crunch (good Xero alternative if you want access to expert accountants)
We voted Crunch as a good Xero alternative if you need access to expert accountants. Crunch is the only software platform on this list that supplies qualified accountants in-house. What's unique about Crunch is that you'll get software and service in one beautiful package.
The software includes excellent features like invoices, expenses, banking, bank reconciliation, and online payments (soon to be released). But Crunch also offers a range of services included in your paid subscription or available for a one-time fee.
For instance, Crunch can educate you about tax relief options, help with your registration for taxes, register your company for you, and more.
One downside is that it's only available for UK-based businesses. Users of the free plan can access features like unlimited invoices, expense management, estimates, receipt scanning, open banking, and bank reconciliation.
The paid plans give access to some more advanced features and free services like unlimited accountancy support, year-end accounts, a real-time tax dashboard, a dedicated account manager, and in-app customer support.
Crunch is best for:
Invoices and quotes
Tax and VAT
Ask an accountant
Sole Trader Pro: £24.50+VAT/month
Unlimited Company Pro: £41.50+VAT/month
Limited Company Premium: £121.50+VAT/month
Small Business: £206.50+VAT/month
Go to Crunch
5. myBooks: cheaper alternative to Xero if you’re on a budget
If you're looking for a cheap alternative to Xero, take a look at myBooks. The software is built by the Indian software company Zetran, which has several products under its belt, including financial planning software and HR management software. myBooks has a generous free plan that supports one user and allows for up to 25 monthly transitions.
There are two paid plans, Standard and Premium. The Standard plan costs only $4.99 per month and comes with additional features like three users, 100 monthly transactions, payment integration, and an iOS app. The Premium plan contains the full features of the software, introducing more advanced features like ten users, unlimited transactions, and automatic bank feeds.
MyBooks is best for:
Automatic Bank Feed
Android & IOS app
Standard, $4.99 /month billed annually
Premium, $9.99 /month billed annually
Enterprise, custom quote
Go to MyBooks
6. Freshbooks (good option for freelancers and independent contractors)
Freshbooks might be an amazing alternative to Xero if you're a freelancer or independent contractor. It's intuitive and easy to use, making it among the top Xero alternatives for beginners in the accounting software industry.
Some of the features you'll find include creating and sending invoices, managing clients and projects, tracking billable time, project management, and accepting online payments. Accounting features include balance sheets, accounts receivable and payable, and general ledger tools.
One downside is that Freshbooks doesn't have a free version, but its cheapest plan will cost you only $13.50 /month, billed annually. There are four subscription levels in total, running from $13.50 /month to $45 /month. You'll also get a 10% discount if you opt for an annual subscription.
Online payments work through Freshbooks' own payment function called WePay. The service costs 2.9% plus 30 cents per transaction. You can accept payments through other gateways like Stripe and Paypal.
Freshbooks is best for:
Small business owners
Estimates and proposals
Accounting and reports
Lite: $13.50 /month billed annually
Plus: $22.50 /month billed annually
Premium: $45 /month billed annually
Select: contact vendor for pricing
Go to Freshbooks
7. Sage Accounting (top Xero replacement for startups)
Sage Accounting can be a top Xero replacement for startups, as well as for solo entrepreneurs. The software is a great starting point for businesses that need a more lightweight cloud accounting solution and limited budgets.
There are two paid plans you can opt for, including Sage Start, that's available for only $10 per month, and Sage Accounting Standard, which costs $25 per month. The former paid plan is suitable for self-employed individuals and micro-businesses, while the latter is geared towards small businesses.
And if your business eventually grows, there are two other Sage accounting products you can transfer your business to, Sage 50cloud and Sage Intacct. The most notable features of Sage Accounting are invoices, estimates, expenses, billing, accounts payable and receivable, and cash flow forecasting.
Sage Accounting is best for:
Cash flow forecasting
Sage Accounting Start, $10 /month
Sage Accounting Standard, $25 /month
Go to Sage Accounting
8. ZipBooks (great Xero substitute for small agencies)
ZipBooks made it to our list as the best Xero substitute for small agencies and contractors. The software is easy to use, has an extensive set of features, and is very affordable. But there are other things that make it a suitable choice for agencies.
There's a special subscription level called Accountant that comes with all the features small accounting agencies need to manage their clients. You'll be able to text clients directly from ZipBooks, track time across client accounts, export financial packages, edit transactions in bulk, manage clients from one central dashboard, and more.
Features like smart insights and reports can come in handy for retaining your most profitable clients, getting paid on time, and seeing how you're doing compared to competitors. There's some automation functionality built-in that lets you automate everything with auto-billing and automated payment reminders.
ZipBooks is best for:
Reports and insights
Smarter: $15 /month
Sophisticated: $35 /month
Accountant: Contact vendor
Go to ZipBooks
9. Kashoo (top option for small businesses)
Small businesses have a lot to gain from Kashoo, especially if they care about affordability, ease of use, and a generous set of features. The good news is that Kashoo has some great functionality like unlimited users, online payments, inventory management, and bill management.
You'll also be able to associate expenses or income with a project, which can be handy if you're dealing with more than a few clients. Another good-to-have functionality is the multi-currency feature that can be quite useful if you're working with clients that live outside of the US or Canada.
There is also a good deal of financial reports and statements that let you keep track of your financial health so that you can make better business decisions. Clients can pay their invoices online via payment providers like Visa, MasterCard, and American Express.
But remember that if you want to use the online payments feature, you must first sign up for an account for Kashoo's credit card processor, WePay.
Kashoo is best for:
Invoicing and payments
Income and expenses
Users and account management
Go to Kashoo
10. FreeAgent (good Xero alternative for unlimited everything)
At first glance, FreeAgent may look like any other online accounting system. It comes with standard invoicing, expense tracking, and banking functionalities. But the secret is that FreeAgent is completely unlimited.
You can have as many users, clients, and projects as you want at no extra cost. And the best part is that you'll get all of this functionality for only $20 per month. You'll also get a 50% discount for the first six months.
In case you ever cancel your subscription to FreeAgent, you'll be able to download all of your data at any time for free. If you're in the UK or the EU, you'll be happy to hear FreeAgent has great VAT support.
FreeAgent is best for:
$10 /month for six months, then $20 /month
Go to FreeAgent
Which of the alternatives to Xero is a good choice for you?
In this post, we voted Zoho Books as one of the best alternatives to Xero for its free plan option, a large selection of payment gateways, and ease of use. Zoho Books might fit the bill and be a top-notch option for many businesses. However, Zoho Books can't fit everyone's bill. Other options like ZipBooks or QuickBooks might be more suitable for some of you.
Let's summarize our findings so that you can easily decide on the best accounting software for your business. Wave is an excellent choice if you're working with a tight budget and need a capable but free solution. Freshbooks is designed with freelancers and independent contractors in mind, while ZipBooks has a monthly plan tailored to fit the needs of small accounting agencies.
The best approach here is to think about your needs and your budget. Then, take advantage of these accounting solutions' free plans or trials before deciding. If you need further reading resources, we have a separate post that discusses the best software for accounting.