Sage Accounting Software Review: Business Cloud Pros & Cons
If you’ve been wondering about this British multinational software company named after a magical herb, then welcome to this Sage accounting software review. We’ll go over features and benefits of Sage Business Cloud Accounting (or simply Sage Accounting), formerly Sage One, as well the desktop platform 50cloud and the financial management solution Intacct.
Sage accounting software review 2023: Is Sage business cloud accounting any good?
According to this Sage accounting software review, Sage is a very good accounting and financial management solution if matched with the right kind of company. As this Sage review will explain, there are three Sage accounting products geared toward different sizes of businesses and in a variety of industries.
As far as an accounting software comparison is concerned in the wider market of SaaS, Sage is often perceived as a bigger, more institutional software company, like SAP, Oracle, or Microsoft. In this Sage Business Cloud Accounting review, along with the 50cloud review and Intacct review, you’ll get a good feel for how these products line up against those huge names on one side, and against smaller-but-rising brands like Xero, Quickbooks and Freshbooks.
Sage pricing plans
First of all, how much does Sage accounting software cost? Let’s first review Sage cloud prices:
Sage Accounting Start
Sage Accounting Standard
Sage 50cloud Pro Accounting
$567 per year*
$924 per year*
$1,533 per year*
*Sage regularly has special deals, especially for first-time subscribers.
For example, at the moment of writing of this article, you can get Sage Accounting Standard at 70% discount for the first 6 months, giving you a price of $7.50 per month instead of $25 per month.
Similarly, all Sage 50cloud Accounting plans are currently offering 40% off for new customers for the first year. Always check with Sage for current prices.
How much does Sage accounting software cost for nonprofits?
While Sage products can be used by nonprofit organizations to streamline their accounting and business operations, it does not seem that Sage offers special prices for nonprofits or charitable organizations at this time. Do check back with Sage regularly to see if there are any new specials for nonprofits, or reach out to their sales team directly with your inquiries.
Are there any Sage accounting coupon codes or promo discount vouchers?
We did the research, and it seems there are no Sage accounting software coupon codes or discount vouchers at this time. You may discover some promo discount coupon vouchers with 3rd party sites, but always check directly with Sage to see if they are legitimate and still valid before buying them.
Sage Sage business cloud accounting overview: what is Sage accounting software & what is it used for?
First things first, a bit about names. You see, Sage Accounting used to be called Sage One, and now it’s also sometimes called Sage Business Cloud Accounting. On top of that, Sage 50cloud used to be called, get this, Peachtree Accounting Software. Then there’s the name Simply Accounting Software, which is also in the mix.
But today, we have only three names: Sage (Business Cloud) Accounting, including a Start and a Standard package; Sage 50cloud, with a Pro, Premium, and Quantum plan; and Sage Intacct.
All three of these products are accounting software, except Intacct. You could say it’s also more of a financial management solution.
Smaller businesses like startups and even solo entrepreneurs might do best starting with Accounting, and from there, it is easy to scale up and upgrade to 50cloud if business picks up. Intacct is optimal for large organizations, big businesses, enterprise operations and even governments.
This accounting software is used for managing your cash flows, doing accounts payables and receivables, handling payroll, doing inventory management, keeping your bookkeeping straight, figuring out taxes and multinational currency deals, and creating financial reports.
Sage accounting products also leverage AI and automation. You can use workflows to streamline repeated work processes, saving your team time and energy, reducing mistakes, and helping to cut costs. Workflows can be created without knowing any code, saved and shared.
To compare Sage to other platforms like Quickbooks Online, Xero or Freshbooks, one can say that the Sage product most similar is somewhere between Accounting and 50cloud.
Sage free vs paid: what’s the difference?
Unfortunately, there is no free version of any of the Sage accounting tools. There are some free trials, however.
Sage features list
The main features of Sage accounting software are:
Sage Business Cloud Accounting features
Sage Accounting is the most basic Sage set of tools for accounting for small businesses owners, startups, self-employed people and freelancers. It’s a basic accounting system that scores a lot of prints for ease of use. Sage Accounting is the only Sage product that can be used on an Apple Mac.
This online accounting software lets you create invoices easily and send them to clients and customers. You can follow invoices with automation to keep track of what you’re owed. Quotes and estimates can be converted into invoices, and you can accept payments with a Stripe integration. The basic invoicing features are available on the Sage Accounting mobile apps for Android and Apple devices.
Use Sage Accounting for billing and bookkeeping to track what you are owed at all times. Receivables and expense tracking are made easier with a “pay now” button provided by the Stripe integration. You get clear data on the dollar amounts you are owed as well payment due dates and overdue dates.
Snap receipts are one way to automate the capture of receipts and other data. It works with the mobile app by taking photos of documents. You can capture bills, receipts, and invoices. The digital files work with drag-and-drop functionality and can be easily categorized. You can then publish this cash flow data in your reporting.
Just as this accounting solution lets you track what you are owed, you can also manage what you owe to other businesses. Automated notifications help you not to miss a payment. You can also manage bank account credit terms and limits, add tags to suppliers, and categorize your debts and who you owe them to.
Cash flow forecasting
While you will get more sophisticated forecasting with the more premium Sage accounting platforms, here you still get some solid yet simple cash flow statement abilities. This is a great boon for small business owners needing to make short-term and long-term plans.
As a software solution accounting package, Sage Accounting has most of what an SMB might need for managing purchasing and expense tracking. However, this feature is not available in the Sage Accounting Start package, along with others like snap receipts and cash flow forecasting.
Sage 50cloud Accounting features
Sage 50cloud is also considered to be small business accounting software for entrepreneurs, although it is a step up from the above Sage Accounting. There is a lot more automation in this accounting system which means less administrative work for your team. Sage 50clolud can only be used on a Windows operating system, and it is a desktop app, but you still need an internet connection because it has cloud-connected features.
Invoicing and cash flow
Sage 50cloud begins with invoicing tools which are a step above Sage Accounting. You get bank statements with cash balances, incoming cash, outgoing cash, and more data. Trial balance lists improve accuracy in credit and debit balances. The cash flow views are customizable by time period or type of transaction, like invoices, quotes, and purchases. You can also use this to forecast future revenues or debts. Finally, there are custom recurring invoices.
Banking and payments
Sage 50cloud does accounts payable and accounts receivable with other bank transactions like purchase orders, invoices, payments, bank feeds, and account reconciliation. Almost all of these processes can be automated. You can connect this feed to your other bank feeds to access the data from anywhere. This set of tools also works alongside inventory management features.
This is not your ordinary inventory tracking, but Sage advanced inventory management. Entering inventory items, costs, transactions, and quantities doesn’t require much effort, and you can keep track of everything while on the go with a mobile version. The system tracks costs and quantities and adjusts inventory automatically whenever a sale is registered.
Job costing and project management accounting are no longer difficult tasks with Sage 50cloud. Get insights into how long jobs take and what they cost, and compare those results to plans. Set up job phases and cost codes, and track job costs through a variety of metrics like purchasing and payroll.
Companies can use Sage 50cloud for all things HR and payroll. You can pay your employees with direct deposit, pay cards, or direct-deposit checks. You can also use this to monitor employee payroll records and manage collecting payroll taxes.
There is a Payroll Setup Wizard to get going quickly. Holiday pay and vacation hours are also done with this system, as are some tipping functionality. Employees can also use the system to enter their own hours for time tracking on special projects.
Sage 50cloud is quite famous for its reporting, and you can get access to over 150 different kinds of report templates, many of which are industry-specific. There is one-click reporting on payables, receivables, expenses, sales taxes, inventory, profits, payroll, and jobs. It’s fun and easy to design your own custom reports based on great templates, too, with custom filters. More advanced balance sheet financial reports are also on offer here.
There are many great Sage add-ons for 50cloud. They include add-ons for categories like cashflow, debt tracking, document management, e-commerce, and point of sale, as well as for industries like real estate, which puts it up there with the best real estate accounting software. It also covers healthcare, hospitality, retail, nonprofits, and construction, also making it among the best construction accounting software. There is also a Microsoft 365 add-on.
Since such a platform will have your sensitive information in the cloud, you can be sure Sage has tight security and privacy features. You can feel safe about your bank feeds, credit card information, financial reports, general ledger data, and more.
Sage Intacct features
Sage Intacct is the most advanced and professional accounting business tool from Sage. It is heavily based on artificial intelligence and data-driven insights and suggestions. In total, Intacct has modules for financial management, ERP, planning, analytics, HR & payroll. Sage Intacct cannot be used on an Apple Mac.
You can automate payments from banks, vendors, and other payment platforms. You can pay your vendors with a check, ACH, or a virtual card. You can do paperless routing for your approvals. There is also multiple account functionality in a single user interface. Based on an intelligent virtual assistant, the Intacct accounts payable module cuts down on processing time by as much as 65%
Your Sage Intacct accounts receivable module integrates with your CRM so you can maintain great customer relationships. All transactions are automatically entered into a general ledger. You get constant real-time sales and tax calculations. Your receivables can be displayed on dashboards, in reports, and on charts. Overall, automating your collections process can save you a lot of data entry work.
Intacct’s cash management suite gives you a better overview of your total cash flow picture. You can take repeated complex cash processes and automate them, as well as save time with workflows. Stay up to date with real-time visibility on savings, checking and credit card balances, and do automated bank reconciliation. Cash management also monitors for bank errors and manages any fraud situations.
Intelligent General Ledger
Sage Intacct uses a trademarked AI general ledger which is very intuitive and intelligent. It can apply dimensions to make your chart of accounts simpler, use guardrails to stay consistent and accurate in your workflows and report single transactions using different financial standards. The Sage intelligent GL is a great tool for agile accounting management, as it focuses on real-time data for AI-optimized decision-making.
When it comes to quote-to-cash processes, whether simple or complex, Intacct order management can seriously do some streamlining. It is a great tool to get on top of processing complexity, pricing structures, and inventory challenges. For compliance, you can automate away the work of revenue recognition. Order management workflows can be created for reuse after a single use. There is even a Salesforce CRM integration if your business needs it.
According to Sage’s number-crunching team, the Intacct purchasing tools will save your work efforts in the procure-to-pay process half the time usually spent on purchasing. Create your own purchase approval workflows and enter predefined purchase transaction details for automatic reuse. Purchasing is also intimately connected with cash management, accounts payables, and inventory stats. Dashboards help compare quotes, track budgets, and get notified of price breaks.
No more need for Excel-type spreadsheets to handle the distributions of key figures between business entities. Allocations are simple to set up and reuse, there are automatic corrections and post-period adjustments, and you can compare your allocation strategy to others to keep improving your methods. What’s more, their audit trails keep everything transparent.
Revenue recognition is how you remain compliant via the power of automation. You get full support for ASC 606 and IFRS 15. There is automatic revenue and expense reallocation, dual reporting to eliminate allocation uncertainties, and flexible expense amortization processes. And all this data is used to generate business insights.
The fixed assets module works with Intacct’s core accounting set of features. If you want automation as the backbone of your fixed asset lifecycle all the way from acquisition to eventual disposal, this module is a winner. Get real-time data on depreciation values for tax purposes. Keep track of your fixed assets in the cloud financial management system with stats on condition, insurance, and maintenance.
Sales and Use Tax
If you’re doing business in an international context, you can use Sage Intacct for global sales and tax management. There is out-of-the-box tax capture that you can automate. Jurisdiction compliance is updated when new tax laws go into place. You can assign default tax engines to capture all tax liability. Audits and other tax calculations can be set up using no code.
When it comes to time tracking and time management, Sage leverages AI once again to streamline much of the work. Timesheets are intelligent and accurate, and they give you regular business insights on how to optimize your time management. It can track staff time, project time, and check for time entry errors. Teams can even use the time entry features from their iOS or Android mobiles.
All your purchasing and payables needs are brought together in Sage Intacct’s spend management kit. Manage your funds by tracking budgets and staying on top of spend requests.
To stay within budget, you can automate the setting of limits to departments and do agile budget change management. Dashboards show you “spend trends,” which can pinpoint unplanned variances and spikes.
While you get some inventory management with Sage Accounting and 50cloud, inventory management with Intacct is a much more refined engine. Easily manage and keep track of the value of inventory items from a number of different locations using the cloud with great unified dashboards. Intacct’s inventory tracking system can cut down on costs and hours when used to its full potential.
Time and Expense Management
With time and expense management, you get to streamline your operations while also cutting down on revenue leakage. These features are great for keeping the team on the ball with their project and keeping financial partners and other stakeholders in the loop. Instant alerts go out for approvals of timesheets and expense reports based on roles and permissions.
Multi-Entity and Global Consolidations
With this set of global features, you can connect hundreds of separate entities into a single multi-entity organization very quickly. Multi-currency accounting software makes it easy to transact across the planet. There are automated financial consolidation, real-time global and local reporting, and even a troubleshooting tool for inter-entity transaction issues.
Vendor Payment Services
Sage’s vendor payment services are powered by the platform of Corporate Spending Innovations, or CSI. It streamlines the bill to the reconciliation process. You can automate payments, spot errors and blindspots, see payment status, open revenue streams, and manage cash rebates. One-time use of virtual cards makes paying vendors fast and free.
Project management and accounting must work hand in hand to ensure project success while staying on budget. Use Intacct project management to control costs, revenue and billing. Designate task accounting by a project to regulate your entire portfolio with custom project accounting. Use past project data for better project planning in the future. You can also use this to keep your project stakeholders and clients informed about project progress.
Sage accounting software pros and cons
Here are the advantages and disadvantages of Sage accounting software:
Sage accounting software advantages
- There are lots of different products in the Sage brand of accounting software, so there is almost certainly something for all business types and sizes.
- The artificial intelligence and data-driven insights are very accurate and can really help optimize much of your accounting processes.
- Automation and workflows are relatively easy to create with Sage and immediately help speed up operations when implemented.
- The Accounting Standard’s basic invoices, purchasing, and billing are a tight little package for a freelancer or individual entrepreneur.
- Sage 50cloud’s inventory management is another benefit to that platform. It’s solid enough to handle quite the operation with multiple locations but without the cost of Intacct.
- A final pro for Sage is Intacct’s global accepting management solution. If you run a business in multiple currencies and tax rules, this is a solid vendor.
Sage accounting software disadvantages
- The first drawback of all of the Sage products is that there is no free plan. We understand Sage is a serious enterprise, but for what the basic accounting package offers, there are some free or at least cheaper alternatives.
- One of the cons for some users who want a very simple experience and the interface is that this can seem like a lot of tools and features. On top of that, mastering them all can be time-consuming.
- With the mix of core tools and modules and add-ons, it might be a bit confusing for someone to figure out exactly what they are subscribing to and what the monthly or annual cost will be.
- The look and feel may be simple, neat, and clean, but it might not pop for some younger hipper startups out there.
Sage accounting software complaints & praise (from real Sage reviews)
So, we took a gander at some Sage reviews from the online world, and here is the aggregate opinions of various sources.
The more positive Sage online reviews praise the overall improvement their operations have exhibited since implementing the software, migrating the data, onboarding the team, and using all the tools to the max. In terms of time spent on tasks, money wasted on redundancies and miscommunications in accounting data, Sage has really impressed its die-hard loyalists.
However, there is another side to that, as some negative Sage accounting software reviews have complained that what is described above is no simple and speedy task. One repeated sentiment was that it was hard to get 100% of the team to buy into fully adopting Sage. Clearly it has its detractors.
Other good online Sage reviews praise the basics like payroll, inventory management, and general banking needs. Intacct’s more advanced time and expense management module are well appreciated.
However, there are a few negative Sage online reviews. The cash flow forecasting in the standard accounting platform has been said to be less powerful than some had expected. Also, many reviews complain about the price.
Review of Sage accounting software support
Let’s get into their customer support of Sage.
Sage Business Cloud Accounting support
You get phone support Monday to Friday from 9 AM to 8 PM, online drop-in Q&As during business hours with speedy replies, and pre-recorded webinars. There is also access to a community called Sage City to share ideas and ask questions and video guides. There is also email support. For those that seek it, you can get certified through instructor-led courses.
Sage 50cloud support
All Sage 50cloud pricing packages come with unlimited phone and online chat support with support analysts there for you from 9:00 AM to 8:00 PM ET, Monday to Friday, though the phone is North America based. You can also get access to a dedicated customer success representative to help you personally, which is good for up to 50 times.
Sage Intacct support
Sage Intacct has its own dedicated support platform. You can subscribe to one of the more premium packages on top of your Sage software. For example, you can have regular access to support office hours from Monday to Friday for 24 hours PT, or if you have the gold package, it gets you service seven days a week. But even the essential plan, which is included for free with your Sage Intacct subscription, promises a 1-hour response time on top-priority cases.
Is Sage accounting software worth it? Our conclusion
At last, we turn to the pressing issue, is Sage accounting software worth it? The answer, as always, is that Sage is a worthwhile collection of accounting software platforms, and some will be the right choice if it meets your business needs.
However, if you’d like to check out different software before making a final decision, be sure to check out the best Sage accounting alternatives.
Our final Sage accounting software rating
Sage Business Cloud Accounting gets a 3.5/5 for small businesses and startups.
Sage 50cloud gets a 4/5 if you’re a medium-sized business or SMB.
Sage Intacct gets a 4.5/5 for large businesses and enterprises.