Sage Intacct vs QuickBooks Desktop Comparison: Which Is Best for Your Business

  • February 21, 2024

Both Sage Intacct and QuickBooks Desktop offer cloud-based accounting software options for a diverse range of industries. Their extensive feature sets include numerous integrations to streamline business processes. When deciding between Sage Intacct vs QuickBooks Desktop, factors such as the complexity of your finances, the size of your company, budget, and comfort level with accounting software should be considered. It is crucial to carefully assess your specific requirements in order to choose the solution that best aligns with your business objectives.

Choosing the right accounting software for your business can be a daunting task. There are many factors to consider, such as the size and complexity of your operations, the level of customization and integration you need, and the budget and resources you have. In this guide, we will compare two popular accounting solutions: QuickBooks Desktop (Pro, Premiere, Enterprise) and Sage Intacct.

We will look at their features, benefits, drawbacks, pricing, and customer reviews to help you make an informed decision.

Key features of Sage Intacct

Sage Intacct is a cloud-based accounting software that helps businesses of all sizes and industries manage their finances. Sage Intacct offers features such as multi-entity and multi-currency management, automated workflows, real-time reporting, and integration with other applications. Sage Intacct also provides industry-specific solutions for nonprofits, healthcare, professional services, and more. Sage Intacct aims to help businesses streamline their processes, improve their performance, and achieve compliance.

Sage Intacct has the following key features:

  • Cloud-based accounting: Access financial data anytime, anywhere, and from any device.
  • Multi-entity and multi-currency management: Manage multiple entities and currencies with ease and efficiency.
  • Advanced reporting and analytics: Gain insights into business performance and trends with powerful reporting and analytics tools.
  • Accounts payable and receivable: Manage and automate accounts payable and receivable processes.
  • Time and expense management: Track and manage employee time and expenses.
  • Purchasing: Streamline and automate purchasing processes.
  • Sales and use tax: Automate sales and use tax calculations and compliance.
  • Fixed assets: Track and manage fixed assets.
  • Budgeting and planning: Create and manage budgets and forecasts.

Key Features of QuickBooks Desktop

QuickBooks Desktop is a desktop-based accounting software that offers a comprehensive set of features for small and medium-sized businesses. QuickBooks Desktop can help you manage your accounting, inventory, projects, payroll, and taxes with ease and accuracy. QuickBooks Desktop is available in four editions: Pro, Premier, Enterprise, and Accountant. Each edition has different features and pricing options to suit your specific needs.

QuickBooks Desktop Key Features:

  • Track income and expenses: QuickBooks Desktop helps you manage your business finances by tracking your income and expenses. You can easily create invoices, receive payments, record expenses, and generate reports.
  • Manage inventory and projects: QuickBooks Desktop allows you to track your inventory and projects in one place. You can monitor your inventory levels, set reorder points, and create purchase orders. You can also track your project costs, profitability, and progress.
  • Payroll and taxes: QuickBooks Desktop simplifies your payroll and tax processes. You can pay your employees, file your payroll taxes, and print your tax forms with a few clicks. You can also integrate with third-party payroll services and tax software.
  • Customize and automate: QuickBooks Desktop lets you customize and automate your accounting tasks. You can create custom forms, reports, and templates to suit your business needs. You can also set up reminders, alerts, and recurring transactions to save time and avoid errors.
  • Multi-user access: QuickBooks Desktop allows you to share your data with multiple users. You can set up user permissions, roles, and passwords to control access and protect your data. You can also work with your accountant, bookkeeper, or other team members remotely.
  • Industry-specific editions: QuickBooks Desktop offers industry-specific editions for different types of businesses. You can choose from QuickBooks Desktop Pro, Premier, or Enterprise, depending on your industry and business size. You can also get specialized features and reports for manufacturing, retail, nonprofit, and more.
  • Data security and backup: QuickBooks Desktop protects your data with encryption, firewall, and antivirus technology. You can also backup your data to a local device or a cloud service. You can also restore your data in case of any loss or damage.

Explore the Sage Intacct vs QuickBooks Desktop comparison

Table: key differences between on-premises and cloud accounting software:

Feature On-Premises Accounting Software Cloud Accounting Software
Location Installed locally on the company’s servers and computers Hosted on the vendor’s servers and accessed via the internet
Cost Higher upfront costs due to hardware, licenses, and installation Lower initial costs with subscription-based pricing
Control Complete control over the software and data Control is shared with the service provider
Customization Highly customizable to fit specific business needs May have limitations on customization
Data Security The company is responsible for security measures Security is managed by the service provider
Maintenance Requires in-house IT staff for maintenance and updates Maintenance and updates are handled by the service provider
Accessibility Accessible only within the office network Can be accessed from anywhere with an internet connection
Scalability Scaling up may require additional hardware and software Easily scalable with the business growth without significant investment
Integration May require custom integration with other systems Often designed to easily integrate with other cloud services
Backup Manual backups are necessary Automatic backups are typically provided

QuickBooks Desktop Cloud Hosting

While QuickBooks Desktop is traditionally an on-premises accounting software, businesses can opt for cloud hosting to gain remote access and additional flexibility. Here’s a section on QuickBooks Desktop cloud hosting:

Embracing the Cloud with QuickBooks Desktop

QuickBooks Desktop has long been appreciated for its comprehensive features and ease of use. However, the modern business landscape demands accessibility and collaboration that on-premises solutions struggle to provide. This is where cloud hosting comes into play.

Cloud hosting services allow you to run QuickBooks Desktop on remote servers, providing you the freedom to access your financial data from anywhere, at any time. This means you’re no longer tied to a single physical location; you can manage your accounts while on the go, whether you’re at home, in the office, or traveling.

Key Benefits of Cloud Hosting for QuickBooks Desktop:

  • Accessibility: Access your QuickBooks Desktop from any device with an internet connection.
  • Security: Hosted solutions often come with robust security measures, including data encryption and backup services, ensuring your financial data is protected.
  • Collaboration: Multiple users can access the same QuickBooks file simultaneously, facilitating better teamwork and productivity.
  • Cost-Effectiveness: Cloud hosting can reduce IT costs by eliminating the need for maintaining on-premises servers and infrastructure.
  • Scalability: As your business grows, cloud hosting can easily accommodate increased data storage and additional users without significant investment.

Choosing a Hosting Provider:

When selecting a cloud hosting provider for QuickBooks Desktop, consider the following:

  • Certification: Look for providers that are Intuit-authorized to ensure compatibility and support.
  • Uptime Guarantee: A reliable provider should offer a high uptime guarantee to minimize disruptions to your business operations.
  • Customer Support: Ensure that the provider offers 24/7 customer support to address any issues promptly.
  • Performance: The hosting service should provide a seamless experience with minimal latency, akin to using QuickBooks locally.

Sage Intacct vs QuickBooks Desktop Comparison

Feature QuickBooks Desktop Sage Intacct
Deployment On-premises Cloud-based
User Interface User-friendly Modern
Customization Limited Extensive
Reporting Comprehensive Advanced
Scalability Moderate High
Integration Good Excellent
Support Strong Strong

Let’s elaborate on each point in the head-to-head comparison table between QuickBooks Desktop and Sage Intacct:


  • QuickBooks Desktop: It is an on-premises software, meaning it is installed and runs on the computers of the person or organization using the software. This can be beneficial for businesses that prefer to have control over their data and do not want to rely on internet connectivity.
  • Sage Intacct: As a cloud-based software, Sage Intacct is hosted on the provider’s servers and accessed via the internet. This allows for real-time data access from anywhere, making it ideal for businesses with remote teams or those that require mobility.

User Interface

  • QuickBooks Desktop: Known for its user-friendly interface, QuickBooks Desktop is designed to be accessible to users with varying levels of accounting knowledge, making it a popular choice for small businesses.
  • Sage Intacct: Offers a modern interface that is highly customizable. It may have a steeper learning curve than QuickBooks Desktop, but it provides a more personalized experience.


  • QuickBooks Desktop: Provides limited customization options compared to Sage Intacct. Users can customize reports and invoices but may find the overall system less flexible.
  • Sage Intacct: Boasts extensive customization capabilities, allowing users to tailor the software to their specific business processes and reporting needs.


  • QuickBooks Desktop: Offers comprehensive reporting features that cover the basics needed for small to medium-sized businesses. Users can generate a variety of financial reports with ease.
  • Sage Intacct: Provides advanced reporting tools that deliver deeper insights into financial data. Its reporting is more dynamic and can be more useful for data-driven decision-making.


  • QuickBooks Desktop: Has moderate scalability. It can support the growth of small to medium-sized businesses but may become limited for larger enterprises or those with complex accounting needs.
  • Sage Intacct: High scalability is one of its strengths. It can support businesses of all sizes and is particularly well-suited for growing companies that need a system to grow with them.


  • QuickBooks Desktop: Offers good integration with other software, especially within the Intuit product family, but may have limitations when integrating with third-party applications.
  • Sage Intacct: Excellent integration capabilities are a key feature. Its open API allows for seamless connections with a wide range of business systems, from CRM to eCommerce platforms.


  • QuickBooks Desktop: Strong support network with a large user community, extensive documentation, and available professional assistance.
  • Sage Intacct: Also provides strong support, including a comprehensive knowledge base, user community, and customer service options.


Choosing between QuickBooks Desktop and Sage Intacct ultimately depends on your business’s specific needs. If you’re looking for a reliable, on-premises solution with a broad feature set, QuickBooks Desktop might be the way to go. However, if you need advanced reporting, scalability, and integration capabilities in a cloud-based platform, Sage Intacct could be the better choice.

Remember, it’s essential to consider your long-term business goals and how your accounting software will help you achieve them. Whichever you choose, both QuickBooks Desktop and Sage Intacct are powerful tools that can streamline your financial management.


Q: How much does QuickBooks Desktop cost?

  • Pro: $399.99 for one user, $649.99 for two users, and $799.99 for three users
  • Premier: $649.99 for one user, $999.99 for two users, and $1,249.99 for three users
  • Enterprise: $1,213 per year for one user, $1,940 per year for two users, and $2,667 per year for three users

Q. How much does Sage Intacct cost?

A: Sage Intacct does not disclose its pricing publicly, as it depends on several factors such as the number of users, modules, transactions, and entities. To get a quote, you need to contact a Sage representative or a partner.

Q. What are the main differences between QuickBooks Desktop and Sage Intacct?

A: Some of the main differences between QuickBooks Desktop and Sage Intacct are:

  • QuickBooks Desktop is an on-premises software, while Sage Intacct is a cloud-based software.
  • QuickBooks Desktop is more suitable for small and medium-sized businesses, while Sage Intacct is more suitable for mid-sized and large businesses.
  • QuickBooks Desktop has a simpler and more user-friendly interface, while Sage Intacct has a more complex and customizable interface.
  • QuickBooks Desktop has more built-in features, while Sage Intacct has more advanced and specialized features that require additional modules.
  • QuickBooks Desktop has limited reporting and integration options, while Sage Intacct has robust reporting and integration capabilities.

Q: What are the system requirements for QuickBooks Desktop?

A. To run QuickBooks Desktop, you need a Windows PC with the following minimum specifications:

  • Windows 8.1 Update 1 or Windows 10 (64-bit)
  • 2.4 GHz processor
  • 4 GB of RAM (8 GB recommended)
  • 2.5 GB of disk space
  • 4x DVD-ROM drive (if installing from a CD)
  • Internet access for online features and updates

Q: What are the system requirements for Sage Intacct?

A. To run Sage Intacct, you need a device with internet access and a compatible web browser. The supported browsers are:

  • Google Chrome
  • Mozilla Firefox
  • Microsoft Edge
  • Apple Safari

Q. How can I migrate from QuickBooks Desktop to Sage Intacct?

A. If you decide to switch from QuickBooks Desktop to Sage Intacct, you will need to export your data from QuickBooks and import it into Sage Intacct. This process can be complicated and time-consuming, so it’s advisable to consult with a Sage partner or an accounting professional to help you with the transition.

Q. How can I migrate from Sage Intacct to QuickBooks Desktop?

A. If you decide to switch from Sage Intacct to QuickBooks Desktop, you will need to export your data from Sage Intacct and> import it into QuickBooks. This process can also be challenging and require some manual adjustments, so it’s recommended to seek assistance from a QuickBooks expert or an accountant to help you with the change.

Q. What are some alternatives to QuickBooks Desktop and Sage Intacct?

A. Some of the alternatives to QuickBooks Desktop and Sage Intacct are:

  • Xero: A cloud-based accounting software that offers features such as invoicing, inventory, payroll, bank reconciliation, and more. It’s designed for small and medium-sized businesses and has a simple and intuitive interface.
  • FreshBooks: A cloud-based accounting software that specializes in invoicing and expense tracking. It’s ideal for freelancers and service-based businesses and has a user-friendly and attractive interface.
  • Zoho Books: A cloud-based accounting software that is part of the Zoho suite of business applications. It offers features such as billing, budgeting, projects, banking, and more. It’s suitable for small and medium-sized businesses and has a customizable and flexible interface.
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