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September 15, 2019

 

QuickBooks Canada vs. QuickBooks USA: Everything You Need to Know

QuickBooks call its products the same things in both countries, but depending on where you buy, you'll find some differences in the accounting software offerings.

Good business practices know no borders, but differences in tax law can make it difficult to use the same bookkeeping software in different countries. Fortunately, QuickBooks has launched software for business owners across the globe. No matter where you do business, you can take advantage of the power of QuickBooks with country-specific tax structures, currencies, and languages.

However, there’s a slight catch. Localized versions of Quickbooks designed for use in countries other than the U.S. do not have the exact same functionality as the version meant for small business owners in the USA, which can lead to some frustrations for business owners elsewhere. For the purposes of our article, we’ll refer to the baseline American QuickBooks software as “QuickBooks USA,” even though the product is known as QuickBooks Online, QuickBooks Enterprise, QuickBooks Self-Employed, etc. regardless of the country. 

If you’re a Canadian business owner, you need to know about the differences between QuickBooks USA and what we’ll call “QuickBooks Canada.” Although QuickBooks products go by the same name in both the U.S. and Canada, Canadian small business owners aren’t buying the exact same thing as their American counterparts. Fortunately, QuickBooks offers a large suite of features, most of which carry over to QuickBooks Canada. Here’s what you can expect from QuickBooks Canada in terms of language, tax structure, features, and pricing.

1. French Language Version Available

In order to represent both of Canada’s official languages, QuickBooks has a French language version. The French-Canadian version of QuickBooks is fully localized and professionally translated for ease of use. 

Choose the French language version if this is your native language and you prefer to navigate QuickBooks in French. Don’t worry if your customers don’t speak French, because you can make invoices in 6 languages: English, Canadian French, Spanish, Italian, Traditional Chinese, and Brazilian Portuguese.

(Interestingly, the interface of QuickBooks USA is only available in English.) 

2. Different Tax Structures

Canada and the U.S. have different ways of handling taxes, and the two versions of QuickBooks reflect this crucial difference in bookkeeping. For example, the U.S. has a sales tax whereas Canada has a sales tax plus a goods and services tax (GST) that must be taken into account. 

Furthermore, the U.S. tax system associates taxes with the customer, while the Canadian system associates taxes with the item. Therefore, the way they appear within the software differs. 

If you conduct international business and are unsure how to apply or record tax information for these transactions, it’s best to consult an accountant who can help you use your version of QuickBooks in the optimum fashion.

3. Not All Add-Ons Available

QuickBooks is a great bookkeeping software on its own, but sometimes having an additional feature or two makes it even more efficient and productive as a business management tool. That’s where add-ons or integrations from both QuickBooks and third-party developers come in handy. However, not all of these are available for both QuickBooks USA and QuickBooks Canada. 

For example, financial reports help show investors and stakeholders, whether current or potential, that your company is financially viable and healthy. QuickBooks USA offers a series of advanced reporting add-ons, but they have not become available for QuickBooks Canada users. However, just because QuickBooks does not offer it directly does not mean a third-party provider does not offer an integration to fill that gap. Canadian users can browse third-party apps to find a solution.

If you need scheduling, dispatch, and work order integration, look no further than Smart Service. Smart Service leads the pack when it comes to integration with either QuickBooks USA or QuickBooks Canada, offering the only real-time connection in the business.

4. Pricing and Plan Differences

For small businesses, QuickBooks USA and QuickBooks Canada currently share four pricing plans: Simple Start (called EasyStart in the Canadian version), Essentials, Plus, and Self-Employed. However, QuickBooks USA offers one more tier above Plus, called Advanced, with a few additional features like invoice importing, integrated Fathom reporting, and access to Priority Circle customer service.

For enterprise businesses, QuickBooks USA offers three plans (with or without hosting) to fit your budget: Silver, Gold, and Platinum. The Gold version adds enhanced payroll to the Silver plan, and the Platinum version offers advanced inventory and pricing features that you cannot get with the other two levels. 

QuickBooks Canada, on the other hand, lets you customize your enterprise package based on how many users you’ll have (up to 30), allows you to choose advanced inventory and pricing add-ons if you want them (they’re free for ten or more users), and even offers an optional hosting bundle. 

Finally, don’t forget that the prices you see for each product are displayed in local currency: QuickBooks Canada shows prices in Canadian dollars, whereas QuickBooks USA shows prices in USD.

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