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Gusto Payroll Vs QuickBooks Payroll: Which Is The Best?

Last Updated Oct 4, 2023

Written By Top10Ratings

Handling payroll accurately is critical for businesses. Surprisingly, approximately 40% of small businesses face penalties each year due to payroll-related errors, making the selection of a reliable payroll software all the more crucial.

Worry not! Here we present an in-depth comparison of Gusto Payroll and QuickBooks Payroll, two leading contenders in the world of payroll solutions.

Proceed with the blog, to analyze the features, strengths, and weaknesses of Gusto Payroll and QuickBooks Payroll to help you make an informed decision. Let’s dive in and discover which is the top payroll software for your organization.

What Is Gusto Payroll?

Gusto Payroll, an innovative payroll software, caters to the automation and streamlining the payroll needs of small to medium-sized businesses. Its user-friendly interface and robust features enable business owners to save time, minimize errors, and ensure compliance with tax regulations.

Gusto Payroll Pros & Cons 

Pros Cons
Unlimited monthly payroll runs.High per-employee fee.
Option for international contractor payments (additional fee).Limited health insurance coverage available in 37 states.
No extra charge for integrating and administering employee benefits.No dedicated mobile app for employers.
Comprehensive benefits offerings, including health insurance, commuter benefits, 401(k)s, FSAs, and HSAs.Minimal HR features, including restricted HR library access and lack of HR expert support.
Basic onboarding tools included with all plans.No compliance alerts with the two cheapest plans
Direct deposit and on-demand payment option via Gusto Wallet.

What Is QuickBooks Payroll?

QuickBooks Payroll is a comprehensive cloud-based software solution that facilitates efficient payroll processing for businesses. This all-in-one platform enables seamless payment to employees, streamlined management of payroll taxes, and easy handling of employee benefits and HR matters. 

With its automated features, QuickBooks Payroll significantly reduces the time and effort required for calculating, filing, and paying federal and state payroll taxes.

QuickBooks Payroll Pros & Cons

Pros Cons
Affordable per-employee fee.Absence of a dedicated mobile app for employers.
Smooth integration with QuickBooks Online and various third-party apps.Lack of workers’ compensation insurance integration with the cheapest plan.
Intuitive and user-friendly interface.Limited time-tracking integration with the cheapest plan.
Multiple plan options for convenient scalability.No support for international payroll processing.
Expedited payroll processing with next-day or same-day options, depending on the plan.

How Gusto And QuickBooks Stack Up?

Here is a quick insight of the key features of the two leading payroll software – Gusto and QuickBooks. Have a look at how these stack up against each other. 

FeaturesGusto QuickBooks
Third-Party IntegrationsYes Yes
AnalyticsYes Yes
Self-Service Employee PortalYesYes
Ledger ReportNo Yes
Health Benefits AdministrationYes Yes
Customer SupportPhone 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday To FridayPhone 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday

When conducting a side-by-side comparison of Gusto and QuickBooks in order to choose the right payroll software, it becomes evident that both payroll providers offer several similar features. Both platforms provide employees with a user-friendly portal to manage their payroll, which significantly reduces the workload for payroll administrators.

Moreover, both platforms seamlessly integrate with third-party providers, streamlining accounting and time-tracking services, although QuickBooks pairs particularly well with other Intuit products.

Overall, both providers garner similar star ratings in our proprietary reviews, making them closely matched contenders in the realm of payroll software solutions.

Gusto Vs QuickBooks: A Quick Feature Comparison 

Features Gusto QuickBooks
Submits state, federal and local taxesYesYes
Built-in expense trackingNoYes
Mobile payroll appNoYes
Free trial periodNo30-day free trial or 50% off for three months
Starting price per month$40 + $6 per employee$45 + $4 per employee
Global PayrollFor contractors onlyNo

Gusto Vs QuickBooks: Pricing 

Gusto offers a transparent pricing structure with four plans, beginning at a base fee of $40 per month, supplemented by an extra $6 per employee on a monthly basis. The pricing includes various features like multiple payroll runs, tax filing, reporting, and more.

On the other hand, QuickBooks Payroll provides accounting and payroll plans starting at $37.50 per month, along with an additional charge of $6 per employee each month. It’s important to note that the cost per employee increases with each service tier.

Gusto Vs QuickBooks: Employee Benefits

Gusto offers free medical, dental, and vision benefits administration as an add-on to payroll plans, underscoring the significant benefits of payroll software for comprehensive employee benefits management. They provide access to 3,500+ health insurance plans from top carriers like BlueCross BlueShield, Humana, and United Healthcare.

Existing plans can be transferred without coverage interruption. They also offer 401(k) retirement plans, commuter benefits, workers’ compensation, flexible spending accounts, and 529 college savings plans.

However, on the other hand, QuickBooks Payroll only offers health benefits and workers’ comp. Workers’ compensation is available only at Premium and Elite levels. 

QuickBooks Payroll partners with SimplyInsured for medical, dental, and vision insurance, and Guideline for 401(k) plans. Additional fee for integrating benefits.

Employee BenefitsGusto QuickBooks
Medical InsuranceFor Premium UsersThrough SimplyInsured
Dental InsuranceFor Premium UsersThrough SimplyInsured
Vision InsuranceFor Premium UsersThrough SimplyInsured
Workers CompensationFor Premium UsersAt Premium and Elite Levels. 
401(k) retirement plansFor Premium UsersAt Premium and Elite Levels. 
529 college savings plans.For Premium UsersNA

Gusto Vs QuickBooks: Third-Party Integrations

Gusto’s people platform seamlessly integrates with various well-known accounting, time tracking, point of sale (POS), and expense management software. Notable integrations include FreshBooks, Expensify, Homebase, and TSheets. These integrations come at no extra cost and without any downtime, ensuring a smooth user experience.

On the other hand, QuickBooks Payroll is primarily designed to integrate with the QuickBooks line of software solutions. Some QuickBooks products, such as TSheets and their main software offering, can also integrate with other platforms like Gusto, providing users with flexibility and options for managing their payroll and related tasks.

Gusto QuickBooks
Accounting, Time Tracking, Expense Management and Point of Sale SoftwareLine Of QuickBooks Online Software 

Gusto Vs QuickBooks: Time Tracking 

Both QuickBooks Payroll and Gusto offer in-house time-tracking software, enabling employees to clock in and out and monitor project-specific hours. However, QuickBooks Payroll’s higher-tiered plan stands out with an additional GPS tracking option. 

This feature allows employers to track employee mileage and is particularly advantageous for teams working at various job sites. With the ability to set up a geofence, employees are prompted to clock in and out automatically as they enter and exit designated job locations.

This added functionality enhances workforce management and ensures accurate timekeeping for businesses with diverse on-site operations.

GPS TrackingYes (Higher-tier plans)No
Employee MileageYes (with GPS tracking option)No
GeofencingYes (with GPS tracking option)No
Suitable forTeams at different job sitesGeneral time-tracking needs

Gusto Vs QuickBooks: Run Payroll

Gusto’s payroll management software is ideal for small to midsize businesses, automating payroll functions for employees and contractors, along with handling HR tasks and benefits administration. 

QuickBooks Online Payroll offers full-service payroll tools for domestic payroll needs, and allows payments to international contractors with U.S. bank accounts, but not to foreign bank accounts.

Both platforms provide powerful solutions, with Gusto focusing on automation and user-friendly features, while QuickBooks Online Payroll excels in comprehensive domestic payroll management.

Gusto Vs QuickBooks: Mobile App

While Gusto is mobile-friendly, it lacks a dedicated mobile app for employers to conveniently run payroll on the go. 

In contrast, QuickBooks Payroll provides a comprehensive and free mobile app for both iOS and Android platforms. 

This app empowers users to execute payroll tasks, access reports, edit employee information, file taxes, and set reminders, all while maintaining full functionality and ease of use. 

QuickBooks Payroll mobile app ensures employers can efficiently manage payroll-related activities from their smartphones or tablets, offering a seamless and accessible solution for on-the-go payroll management.

Mobile App for PayrollNo designated app for employersFully functional free app for iOS and Android
Payroll Management on the GoNot availableRun payroll, view reports, edit employee details, file taxes, and set reminders on the go

Gusto Vs QuickBooks: Tax Filings 

Both Gusto and QuickBooks Payroll offer payroll tax services to ensure accurate and hassle-free tax filings.

Gusto takes care of your payroll taxes automatically, handling W-2 forms for employees and 1099 forms for contractors directly from their platform. They also file local, state, and federal taxes at no additional cost, even for businesses operating in multiple states.

Similarly, QuickBooks Payroll can calculate, file, and pay your payroll taxes efficiently. However, their payroll package includes only one state filing, and additional states cost $12 per month for Core and Premium service tiers. Furthermore, users are required to print out and send local tax forms to their respective tax collection agencies.

Both the software assist in managing payroll taxes, but Gusto’s inclusive approach without extra fees for multiple states sets it apart in providing a seamless tax filing experience for businesses with broader operations.

FeatureGustoQuickBooks Payroll
Payroll Tax HandlingAutomatic filing of payroll taxesCalculating, filing, and paying payroll taxes
State Tax FilingsIncluded with no extra charge for multiple statesOne state included, additional states cost $12/month
Local Tax FilingsHandled directly from the platformUsers required to print and send forms to agencies

Gusto Vs QuickBooks: Customer Support 

Gusto offers full support through a sales and customer support team, available on weekdays via phone, email, and chat. Additionally, their FAQ and Help Center are accessible 24/7, offering assistance around the clock.

On the other hand, QuickBooks provides an extensive knowledge base on their website for customers to find self-help resources. For those who prefer speaking with a live person, QuickBooks support can be reached via phone.

Support OptionsGustoQuickBooks
Customer SupportWeekdays – Phone, email, and chatPhone support
Self-Help Resources24/7 – FAQ and Help CenterExtensive knowledge base on their website

Choosing The Right Payroll Provider: Key Considerations

1. Evaluate Essential Features

When selecting a payroll provider, prioritize the features that align with your business needs both in the present and for future growth. Be cautious of platforms that charge extra fees for additional services, as these costs can accumulate over time. Look for a provider that offers a comprehensive package without unnecessary add-ons.

2. Match Experience with Your Business Size

Consider the size of your business and find a payroll service provider that has experience catering to enterprises similar to yours. While some platforms excel at serving large corporations, they might not be the best fit for small or midsize businesses. Opt for a provider that can scale with your business and accommodate your evolving requirements.

3. Streamlined Switching Process

Before switching payroll providers, inquire about the data migration process. Migrating existing data can be challenging, so understanding the steps involved is crucial. Additionally, ensure that the new provider offers support and guidance throughout the migration process to ensure a seamless transition.

4. Accessible Customer Support

Responsive customer service is essential for a smooth payroll experience, especially during critical moments. A reliable payroll service should offer various communication channels, such as chat, phone, and email, to assist you promptly when needed.

By keeping these factors in mind, you can efficiently select a payroll provider that aligns with your business needs, is easy to switch to, and offers excellent customer support for a hassle-free payroll management experience.

Tied For Excellence: QuickBooks Payroll and Gusto

QuickBooks Payroll and Gusto are both outstanding choices for businesses seeking payroll automation, automated federal and state tax filing, user-friendly interfaces, transparent processes, and robust reporting capabilities.

Recognized at every best business software roundup, these products offer easy navigation and essential time-saving automation features. Their modern interfaces ensure a seamless experience for users. Give them a try to decide which one is best for your business!

With over 200 years of combined industry experience, our Editorial Team at Top10Ratings is a diverse group of expert reviewers, product analysts, and content experts. They come from backgrounds in renowned product testing labs, acclaimed review platforms, and leading market research firms. Together, they ensure that every review, ranking, and insight offered on Top10Ratings is comprehensive, expert-driven, and trustworthy. Their dedication to authenticity and clarity guarantees that our readers always receive reliable and actionable advice.

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