Do I Need a Quickbooks Online Subscription When First Starting My Business?

The short answer is no, you don't! Here are the important things to keep in mind if you're just starting out in your business.

Lauren Gamboa

1/10/20242 min read

person writing on brown wooden table near white ceramic mug
person writing on brown wooden table near white ceramic mug

If you’re just starting out in your business, you don’t necessarily need to jump right into a Quickbooks Online subscription right away. It is a good thing to have as soon as possible, but the main thing you want to keep in mind when just starting out is keeping everything organized.

First, and this is the most important one, you want to make sure you have a separate bank account just for your business. You don’t want any business transactions coming out of your personal account and vice versa. It's really easy to open a free checking account either online or at your own personal bank. I personally use a small business checking and savings account from Capital One that does not charge a monthly service fee, but there are lots of other options to choose from. Whatever option you decide to go with, make sure you also get a debit card for your business spending.

Second, you want to have a digital filing system that makes it easy to save your receipts and find them quickly. Any cloud based storage solution will do, such as Dropbox, One Drive or Google Drive, which is what I use. I don’t know about you, but I hate paper. If it’s paper, there’s a good chance I’ll lose it and I can’t stand filing it. With the cloud, you can add documents from both your computer AND your phone and it automatically syncs across your devices so you can reference them from anywhere.

All you have to do is make a main folder for your business and within that folder, make other folders for documents you need to save. For instance you could make one for receipts and bills, one for customer payments, one for contracts, the list goes on. You can set it up in whatever way works for you. In my opinion, the simpler the better. Then you’ll just drop PDF’s and other documents right into the appropriate folders.

For any paper receipts, you can go right into the Google Drive app and snap a picture by tapping the plus sign, then tapping the camera. If you have an iPhone, this does save it into your camera roll. I don’t know if there’s a way around this, but I just make sure to go into my camera roll and delete them after I’ve dropped them into the folder.

As time goes on, the volume of your transactions will (hopefully) increase and then a Quickbooks Online subscription will make a lot more sense. But until then, these two things will help keep you organized and save you a lot of time!