May 8, 2024

Best Tax Software for Accountants: Detailed Breakdown

Discover the best tax software for accountants in 2024. We cover top picks, key features, and the benefits of Link My Books integration for eCommerce clients!
Best Tax Software for Accountants: Detailed Breakdown
Table of contents

As an accountant, finding the right tax software is crucial for streamlining your tax filing processes, improving efficiency, and ensuring compliance.

With so many options available, it can be challenging to determine which software best suits your needs.

In this guide, we'll dive into the top 10 tax software solutions for accountants in 2024, discussing their features, ease of use, pricing, and customer support. We'll also explore how to choose the best tax software for your accounting practice and the potential benefits of integrating Link My Books for accountants focused on eCommerce clients.

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What Makes a Great Tax Software for Accountants?

A great tax software for accountants should offer several essential features that cater to the unique needs and challenges faced by accounting professionals. These features should enable accountants to work more efficiently, accurately, and in compliance with the ever-changing tax regulations overseen by Companies House.

  1. Automation: The software should automate repetitive and time-consuming tasks, such as data entry, calculations, and form filling. By eliminating manual processes, accountants can save valuable time and reduce the risk of human errors. Automated data import from various sources, such as financial institutions and payroll providers, further streamlines the tax preparation process.
  2. Integration: Seamless integration with other business software, such as accounting and practice management tools, is crucial for efficient workflows. The tax software should be able to exchange data with these systems, ensuring that all financial information is accurate, up-to-date, and easily accessible. This integration eliminates the need for manual data transfer and reduces the likelihood of discrepancies.
  3. Compliance updates: Tax laws and regulations are subject to frequent changes, and it's essential for tax software to stay current with these updates. The software should automatically incorporate the latest tax rules, forms, and calculations to ensure compliance and avoid penalties. Regular updates also help accountants stay informed about new tax-saving opportunities for their clients.
  4. Multi-form support: A comprehensive tax software should be capable of handling various tax forms and scenarios, including individual, business, and specialized returns. This versatility allows accountants to serve a diverse client base with different tax needs. The software should also support e-filing for faster and more secure tax submission.
  5. Cloud-based accessibility: Cloud-based tax software offers numerous advantages over traditional desktop applications. With cloud-based solutions, accountants can access client data and work on tax returns from anywhere, at any time, using any device with an internet connection. This flexibility enables remote work, collaboration with team members, and convenient client interactions. Cloud-based storage also ensures data security and automatic backups.

In addition to these core features, a great tax software should have a user-friendly interface that is easy to navigate, even for less tech-savvy users. Helpful resources, such as tutorials, knowledge bases, and customer support, should be readily available to assist accountants and bookkeepers with any questions or issues regarding tax legislation they may encounter.

Top 10 Tax Software for Accountants

1. ProSeries Professional

Who? ProSeries Professional is an ideal choice for small to medium-sized accounting practices that handle both individual and business tax returns. This software is designed to cater to the needs of tax professionals who require a robust and efficient solution for their clients' diverse tax requirements.

Key Features: ProSeries Professional supports a wide range of tax forms, including 1040, 1041, 1065, 1120, 1120S, 706, 709, and 990. The software offers e-filing capabilities for faster and more secure, tax return submission. It also allows for data import from various financial institutions, reducing manual data entry. ProSeries Professional provides cloud hosting options, enabling remote access and collaboration.

Pros: One of the main advantages of ProSeries Professional is its robust form support, which covers most common tax scenarios encountered by accounting practices. The software also offers reasonable pricing for the features provided, making it a cost-effective choice for small to medium-sized firms.

Cons: While ProSeries Professional handles a wide range of tax situations, it may lack support for some very complex scenarios, such as consolidated corporation tax returns or oil and gas returns. Firms dealing with full corporation tax returns in these specialized cases may need to consider other software options.

Pricing: ProSeries Professional offers flexible pricing options to accommodate different needs and budgets. Packages range from $624 for pay-per-return options to $3,011 annually for unlimited individual returns. This pricing structure allows firms to choose the most suitable plan based on their client volume and expected return types.

2. Drake Tax

Who? Drake Tax is best suited for mid-sized accounting firms that require comprehensive tax form support and robust processing capabilities. This software is designed to handle a high volume of tax returns while providing extensive customization options to meet the specific needs of each firm.

Key Features: Drake Tax offers comprehensive form support, covering a vast array of individual and business tax scenarios. The software allows for multi-user access, enabling team collaboration and efficient workflow management. Drake Tax also provides strong data entry tools, including data import and review features, to streamline the tax preparation process.

Pros: One of the key advantages of Drake Tax is its extensive support for various tax scenarios, ensuring that accounting firms can handle a wide range of client needs. The software also offers strong customization options, allowing firms to tailor the system to their specific requirements and preferences.

Cons: Some users may find the user interface of Drake Tax to be somewhat outdated compared to newer, more modern software options. While the software is highly functional, the visual design may not be as intuitive or visually appealing as some of its competitors.

Pricing: To obtain specific pricing details for Drake Tax, interested firms need to contact the company directly. The pricing structure may vary based on the size of the firm, the number of users, and the specific features and modules required. This approach allows for a more personalized pricing quotation based on each firm's unique needs.

3. TaxSlayer Pro

Who? TaxSlayer Pro is targeted towards professional tax preparers who are looking for a reliable and user-friendly solution. This software is designed to simplify the tax preparation process while providing a range of powerful tools and features.

Key Features: TaxSlayer Pro offers a comprehensive suite of professional tax tools, including e-filing, multi-state returns, and refund tracking. The software also provides client management features, such as secure client portals and customizable invoicing. TaxSlayer Pro supports a wide range of tax forms and offers robust filing options to meet the needs of various clients.

Pros: TaxSlayer Pro is known for its ease of use, making it an attractive choice for tax preparers who value simplicity and efficiency. The software's intuitive interface and guided workflows help users navigate the tax preparation process with confidence. TaxSlayer Pro also offers good customer support, with helpful resources and responsive assistance when needed.

Cons: One potential drawback of TaxSlayer Pro is its higher cost compared to some other options on the market. While the software offers a range of valuable features, the pricing may be a consideration for some firms, especially those with a limited budget.

Pricing: TaxSlayer Pro starts at $1,395 for a single-user license rising to $1,695 for Premium with the Web Based Service priced at $1,695. The software also offers a free trial, allowing potential users to explore its features and functionality before making a purchase decision. While the pricing may be higher than some competitors, the comprehensive feature set and user-friendly design may justify the investment for many tax professionals.

4. MyTAXPrepOffice

Who? MyTAXPrepOffice is suitable for tax professionals who prioritize cloud-based accessibility and comprehensive client management. This software is designed to cater to the needs of firms that value flexibility, remote work capabilities, a support team and streamlined client interactions.

Key Features: MyTAXPrepOffice is a fully cloud-based tax software that allows for secure access from anywhere with an internet connection. The software offers multi-user access, enabling team collaboration and efficient workflow management. MyTAXPrepOffice supports e-filing for faster and more secure tax return submission. The software also provides a client portal feature, allowing for convenient document sharing and communication with clients.

Pros: One of the main advantages of MyTAXPrepOffice is its cloud-based architecture, which offers flexibility and accessibility for tax professionals. The software's multi-user access and client portal features facilitate seamless collaboration and client management. MyTAXPrepOffice's cloud-based design also eliminates the need for local software installations and updates.

Cons: While MyTAXPrepOffice offers a range of valuable features, it may lack some of the advanced capabilities found in more established and comprehensive tax software solutions. Firms with complex tax needs or specialized requirements may find the software's functionality to be somewhat limited compared to other options on the market.

Pricing: MyTAXPrepOffice starts at $595 per year for a single-user license. The pricing is competitive, considering the software's cloud-based architecture and range of features. The annual subscription model ensures that users always have access to all the tools latest updates and improvements.

5. CCH ProSystem fx

Who? CCH ProSystem fx is an accountancy software designed for large firms that require a comprehensive tax solution that integrates seamlessly with other firm management functions. This software is best suited for accounting practices that handle complex corporate tax scenarios and need a powerful, all-in-one platform.

Key Features: CCH ProSystem fx offers extensive project management tools, allowing firms to efficiently manage client engagements and workflows. The software provides comprehensive billing capabilities, streamlining the invoicing and payment process. CCH ProSystem fx supports a wide range of tax forms and scenarios, including complex corporate returns and specialized industries.

Pros: One of the key strengths of CCH ProSystem fx is its ability to handle complex corporate and partnership tax scenarios with ease. The software's extensive form support and powerful calculation engines ensure accurate and compliant tax preparation for even the most intricate returns. CCH ProSystem fx also offers seamless integration with other firm management tools, providing a holistic solution for large accounting practices.

Cons: CCH ProSystem fx is primarily an on-premise software solution, which may not be suitable for all businesses. Firms that prefer cloud-based software and remote work capabilities may find the on-premise deployment to be a limitation. Additionally, the comprehensive feature set and complex capabilities of CCH ProSystem fx may require significant training and resources to fully utilize.

Pricing: The pricing for CCH ProSystem fx is available upon request, as it varies based on the specific needs and size of the firm. Interested practices need to contact the vendor directly to obtain a customized pricing quotation. This approach allows for a tailored solution that aligns with the firm's unique requirements and budget.

6. TaxAct Business

Who? TaxAct Business is best suited for CPA firms and tax professionals who require a robust yet straightforward tax software solution. This software is designed to provide comprehensive tax preparation, filing, and planning capabilities without overwhelming users with unnecessary complexities.

Key Features: TaxAct Business offers a range of tools for tax preparation, including data import, error checking, and e-filing. The software focuses on business and corporate taxes, providing support for various entity types and tax scenarios. TaxAct Business also offers tax planning features, helping professionals provide proactive guidance to their clients.

Pros: One of the main advantages of TaxAct Business is its cost-effectiveness. The software provides a robust feature set at a competitive price point, making it an attractive choice for firms looking to maximize value. TaxAct Business also offers a straightforward user interface, which can help reduce the learning curve for new users.

Cons: While TaxAct Business provides a solid foundation for tax preparation and filing, some users may find its features to be somewhat limited compared to higher-end, more comprehensive tax software solutions. Firms with complex needs or specialized requirements may need to consider other options that offer more advanced capabilities.

Pricing: TaxAct Business starts at $99.99. The software also offers a free version with limited features, allowing users to explore the interface and basic functionality before upgrading to a paid plan. The affordable pricing and free version make TaxAct Business an accessible choice for firms with budget constraints.

7. Wave

Who? Wave is designed for small business owners and freelancers in specific states who need payroll and simple personal tax management tools. This software is best suited for individuals or small firms that have straightforward tax requirements and want an integrated financial and personal tax management solution.

Key Features: Wave automates payroll tax calculations and filings in 14 US states, simplifying the process for small businesses. The software also includes a built-in tax calculator to help users estimate their tax liabilities. Wave offers a range of financial management tools, such as invoicing, accounting, and receipt scanning, providing a comprehensive solution for small businesses.

Pros: Wave's user-friendly interface and integrated financial management features make it an attractive choice for small business owners who want a simple, all-in-one solution. The software's automation of payroll tax calculations and filings can save time and reduce the risk of errors for businesses in supported states.

Cons: One of the main limitations of Wave is that its full-service payroll tax filing is only available in 14 US states. Businesses in other states will need to handle payroll taxes manually or consider alternative software options. Additionally, Wave may not be suitable for larger businesses or those with complex tax requirements, as its features are geared towards simplicity and ease of use.

Pricing: Wave's payroll tax service starts at $40 per month, plus additional fees per employee. The pricing is competitive for small businesses with straightforward payroll needs. However, it's important to note that businesses outside of the supported states will not be able to take advantage of the full-service payroll tax filing, which may impact the overall value proposition.

8. TurboTax Business

Who? TurboTax Business is designed for self-employed individuals and small business owners who prefer a guided, do-it-yourself approach to tax filing. This software is best suited for users who want a simple, step-by-step process for preparing and filing their business taxes.

Key Features: TurboTax Business offers a mobile-friendly interface, allowing users to work on their taxes from any device. The software enables direct import of financial data from various sources, reducing manual data entry. TurboTax Business also provides real-time support for tax-related questions, with access to live experts who can offer guidance and advice.

Pros: One of the main advantages of TurboTax Business is its intuitive, user-friendly design and straightforward interface. The software guides users through the tax preparation process with simple questions and step-by-step instructions, making it accessible even for those with limited tax knowledge. TurboTax Business also offers comprehensive support, with resources and expert advice available to help users navigate complex tax situations.

Cons: TurboTax Business can be expensive, especially for users who require the full-service options. The higher pricing may be a drawback for small businesses with tight budgets or those who only need basic tax filing capabilities. Additionally, while the guided approach is helpful for many users, some may prefer more control and flexibility over the tax preparation process.

Pricing: While the cost is higher compared to some other options, the guided approach and comprehensive support may justify the investment for users who value simplicity and expert assistance.

9. TaxSlayer

Who? TaxSlayer is designed for individuals and small businesses looking for a cost-effective way to file basic tax returns. This software is best suited for users with straightforward tax situations who want an affordable and user-friendly solution.

Key Features: TaxSlayer offers free filing for basic 1040 forms, making it an accessible option for individuals with simple tax needs. The software also provides audit assistance and unlimited support, giving users peace of mind and access to help when needed. TaxSlayer supports a range of tax forms and scenarios, allowing small businesses to file their taxes with ease.

Pros: One of the main advantages of TaxSlayer is its affordability. The free filing option for basic 1040 forms is particularly attractive for individuals with simple tax situations, such as students or retirees. TaxSlayer also offers a user-friendly interface and helpful support resources, making the tax filing process less daunting for those with limited tax knowledge.

Cons: While TaxSlayer's free plan is a great value for basic tax filing, the features available on this plan are limited. Users with more complex tax situations or small businesses with specific needs may find that they need to upgrade to a paid plan to access the necessary forms and features. Additionally, some users may prefer more robust support options or advanced features found in higher-end tax software.

Pricing: TaxSlayer's pricing starts at $37.95 per return for more advanced features and support. The free plan is available for basic 1040 forms and includes unlimited customer support. The paid plans offer additional forms, features, and assistance options, catering to users with more complex tax needs. The pricing is competitive and transparent, making TaxSlayer an attractive choice for budget-conscious individuals and small businesses.

10. Bonsai

Who? Bonsai is ideal for freelancers, self-employed professionals, and small businesses seeking an all-in-one business management and tax solution. This software is designed to streamline various aspects of running a business, from invoicing and expense tracking to tax management and reporting.

Key Features: Bonsai integrates business management features with automated tax calculations, including quarterly estimated taxes and expense tracking for deductions. The software provides tools for creating and sending professional invoices, contracts, and proposals, simplifying client interactions. Bonsai also offers time tracking and project management features, allowing users to stay organized and on top of their business operations.

Pros: One of the main advantages of Bonsai is its comprehensive approach to business management and tax preparation. By integrating various aspects of running a business into a single platform, Bonsai helps users save time and stay organized. The software's user-friendly interface and automated tax calculations make it accessible even for those with limited accounting knowledge. Bonsai's focus on freelancers and small businesses means that its features are tailored to meet the specific needs of these users.

Cons: While Bonsai offers a range of valuable features for business management and tax preparation, it may not be the best choice for larger businesses or those with complex tax requirements. The software's emphasis on simplicity and automation may not provide the level of customization or advanced features needed by some users. Additionally, businesses with multiple employees or more intricate financial structures may require a more robust, accounting software solution.

Pricing: Bonsai offers a range of pricing plans to suit different business needs and budgets. The plans start at $21 per month, with varying levels of features and usage limits. The tiered pricing structure allows users to choose the pricing plan that best aligns with their specific requirements and scale their usage as their business grows. While Bonsai may not be the cheapest option on the market, its all-in-one approach to business management and tax preparation can provide significant value for freelancers and small businesses.

How to Choose the Best Tax Software for Your Accounting Practice

Choosing the best tax software for your accounting practice involves evaluating your specific needs and requirements. Consider the following factors when making your decision:

  1. Firm size: The size of your accounting practice will influence the type of tax software you need. Smaller firms may prioritize simplicity and affordability, while larger firms may require more advanced features and scalability.
  2. Client needs: Assess the types of clients you serve and their specific tax requirements. Look for software that supports the forms, scenarios, and industries relevant to your client base.
  3. Integration: Consider how well the tax software integrates with your existing accounting and practice management tools. Seamless integration can streamline workflows and improve efficiency.
  4. Cloud-based vs. on-premise: Decide whether you prefer a cloud-based solution that offers remote accessibility and automatic updates or an on-premise installation that provides more control over your data and system.
  5. Support and training: Evaluate the level of support and training provided by the software vendor. Look for options that offer comprehensive documentation, live support, and educational resources to help you make the most of the software.
  6. Pricing: Consider the pricing structure and long-term costs associated with the tax software. Look for options that provide value for money and align with your budget, taking into account factors such as per-return pricing, annual licenses, and additional fees.
  7. Scalability: Choose a tax software that can grow with your practice. Look for options that offer flexibility and can accommodate increasing client volumes and changing needs over time.

Link My Books for eCommerce Clients

For accountants focused on eCommerce accounts and clients, integrating Link My Books can provide significant benefits. Link My Books is a powerful software solution that automates the process of importing and categorizing sales data from accounts on various eCommerce platforms, from companies such as Amazon, eBay, and Shopify, into accounting software like Xero and QuickBooks.

By integrating Link My Books, accountants can:

  1. Save time: Automatically import and categorize sales data, eliminating manual data entry and reducing the time spent on bookkeeping tasks.
  2. Improve accuracy: Ensure accurate financial records by automatically applying the correct tax rates and tracking sales by product, customer, and location.
  3. Streamline sales tax reporting: Automatically calculate and report sales tax based on the relevant jurisdictions and tax rates, simplifying compliance with sales tax regulations.
  4. Gain insights: Access detailed reports and analytics on sales performance, customer behavior, and product trends, providing valuable insights for strategic decision-making.
  5. Enhance client service: Offer a more comprehensive and efficient service to eCommerce clients, helping them manage their finances and grow their businesses.

Integrating Link My Books can be a game-changer for accountants serving eCommerce clients, enabling them to provide a higher level of service and value while streamlining their own processes and improving profitability.

Wrapping Up

Choosing the right tax software is essential for accountants looking to streamline their tax processes further, improve efficiency, prepare them, manage them, and provide exceptional service to their clients. By evaluating your specific needs and considering factors such as firm size, client requirements, integration capabilities, and pricing, you can select a tax software that aligns with your practice's goals and growth trajectory.

As you consider your options, don't hesitate to schedule demos, trials, or consultations with software providers to gain first-hand experience with their tools and assess their fit for your practice.

Investing in the right tax software can transform your accounting practice, by making tax digital, enabling you to work smarter, serve your clients better, and achieve long-term success.

For accountants focused on eCommerce clients, integrating Link My Books can provide a powerful solution for streamlining sales data management and enhancing client service.

By leveraging Link My Book's automated accounting data import, accurate tax calculations, and detailed reporting capabilities, accountants can save time, improve accuracy, and provide valuable accounting data and insights to help their eCommerce clients thrive.

In the ever-evolving landscape of tax regulations and eCommerce growth, having the right tools and technologies in place is critical for accounting practices looking to stay competitive and provide exceptional service.

By choosing the best tax software for your needs and considering the benefits of Link My Book integration, you can position your practice for success and help your clients navigate the complexities of tax compliance with confidence.

Transform your accounting practice with the power of the right tax software.

For those serving eCommerce clients, don't miss out on the game-changing benefits of integrating Link My Books.

With automated data import, accurate tax calculations, and detailed reporting, Link My Books can save you time, improve accuracy, and provide valuable insights to help your clients thrive. Try a 14 day free trial today!

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