Everything You Need To Know About QuickBooks for Nonprofits

Organizational Management June 01, 2022

Sayana Izmailova

By Sayana Izmailova

QuickBooks is a ubiquitous tool among small to mid-sized businesses, but did you know that it’s also a great accounting software option for nonprofits?


If you run a nonprofit, the importance of meticulous record keeping cannot be overstated. Keeping track of every cent that comes in and out will not only keep your organization in good standing with the IRS, but will also set it up for a healthy financial future and growth. 


In this post, we’ll be looking at QuickBooks, the popular accounting software, and why it may be a great option for your nonprofit. We’ll discuss what it is, which versions are available, how easy it is to use, and much more. 


Whether you’re getting accounting software for the first time or upgrading your current tool, QuickBooks may be just what you’re looking for. 

What Is QuickBooks for Nonprofits?

QuickBooks is an accounting software that can help you easily manage your nonprofit’s finances. Though it’s popular among for-profit businesses, it has features designed for both for-profit and nonprofit organizations. 


Here are just some of the tasks that QuickBooks can help you accomplish:


  • Keep track of revenue: record donations (monetary or in-kind), pledges, endowments, membership dues, grants, and other nonprofit revenue streams

  • Keep track of expenses: record your operational and program costs, salaries, payments to vendors, and other expenses

  • Maintain program specific budgets: compare projected revenue vs. actuals and compare each program’s finances against previous years 

  • Maintain donor records: group donors by attributes to personalize communications and protect donor data by fine-tuning access to different users 

  • Issue donation receipts: customize receipts with your organization’s logo and branding 

  • Send customized donation and thank you letters: use ready-made Microsoft Word templates that automatically populate with donor data

  • Pull nonprofit specific reports: use any of the nine reports designed specifically for nonprofits or create your own custom reports 

  • Maintain a chart of accounts: see all your accounts in one place and get a bird’s eye view at your financial standing

  • Automate tedious and repetitive tasks like data entry and calculations 

Can I Use QuickBooks for My Nonprofit?

QuickBooks is a great accounting software for just about any type of nonprofit — charities, associations, clubs, societies, churches, and membership organizations. 


They offer many different versions of the software and a few pricing tiers. The version that’s best for your organization will depend on your organization’s size and type, but there’s a suitable solution for everyone. 

What Type of QuickBooks Is Best for My Nonprofit?

QuickBooks tools fall into two major categories: online and desktop. 

QuickBooks Online

QuickBooks Online is a cloud-based software, so it’s accessed through an Internet browser. This means that there’s nothing to download, but you need the Internet to use it. Choose QuickBooks Online if you:


  • Want to pay a monthly subscription fee

  • Want more automation 

  • Want to access QuickBooks from different devices

  • Want software that’s user-friendly and easy to learn


QuickBooks Online can be further broken down into a few tiers that differ in the number of users, features, and pricing. The two tiers most suitable for nonprofits are Plus and Advanced. 

Plus

Pricing: $80/month (currently 50% off for the first three months)

Max number of users: 5

Great for: small nonprofits that also sell products, services, or memberships 

Advanced

Pricing: $180/month (currently 50% off for the first three months)

Max number of users: 25

Great for: established and growing nonprofits that need advanced analytics and could benefit from faster, more automated workflow 

QuickBooks Desktop

QuickBooks Desktop is a locally-installed software, so you’ll need to download it and install it onto your computer. Choose QuickBooks Desktop if you:


  • Want to pay an annual subscription fee

  • Want manual, but more advanced accounting tools

  • Need industry-specific features

  • Don’t mind a steep learning curve


QuickBooks Desktop comes in three different versions: Pro Plus, Premiere Plus, and Enterprise. Note that all three versions are designed for Windows computers. If your organization uses Mac computers, you’ll need to use QuickBooks Desktop for Mac

Pro Plus

Pricing: $349.99/year

Max number of users: 3

Great for: Small to medium-sized nonprofits

Premiere Plus

Pricing: $549.99/year

Max number of users: 5

Great for: Medium-sized and growing nonprofits

Enterprise

Pricing: $1,340.00/year (currently 20% off for the first year)

Max number of users: 40

Great for: Large and established nonprofits 


Read More: Nonprofit Accounting Software: 19 Tools to Make Bookkeeping a Breeze

Is QuickBooks Easy To Use?

QuickBooks Online is far easier to use than QuickBooks Desktop. Just about anybody can learn the former, while the latter is geared at professional accountants. That being said, it’s possible to master either version given enough time and willingness to learn. 


To help make your introduction to QuickBooks as smooth and enjoyable as possible, they offer plenty of helpful resources — articles, webinars, video tutorials, and community discussions. There’s also a customer support line, should you have any technical difficulties or require 1-on-1 help. 

Does QuickBooks Integrate With Nonprofit Software?

QuickBooks integrates with hundreds of popular apps and software tools, including nonprofit software. If you rely on membership or donor management software, you can easily import the data from your nonprofit software into QuickBooks and manage your finances all in one place.


Join It, Findjoo, and Kindful are just a few examples of nonprofit software that integrates with QuickBooks. If you’re a WildApricot user (or you’re thinking of becoming one), you’ll be happy to know that you can import your WildApricot data into QuickBooks in just a few clicks. 


WildApricot gives you the option to export your financial data — member dues, event payments, dontions, etc. — as a QuickBooks file, which you can then import into QuickBooks Desktop. Here are more details on how to do this. 


If you don’t already use WildApricot, click here to learn more about it or to start a free 30-day trial. 

Is There a QuickBooks Nonprofit Discount?

Unfortunately, there’s no special discount on QuickBooks for nonprofits. That being said, as noted in some of the pricing options above, there are discounts for first time users for the first year or few months. 


Another option is to get QuickBooks through TechSoup, a membership organization that offers software to qualifying nonprofits at a significant discount. 

Try QuickBooks

QuickBooks is a trusted name across a wide variety of industries. If you’re in the market for an accounting software for your nonprofit, it may be worth trying. They have a free 30-day trial, so you can test it out and see if it works for your organization. 


Wondering what other apps and tools you can get to streamline your nonprofit’s operations? Check out our article on the 200+ Free or Cheap Nonprofit Software Tools You Need to Know About

 

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