CashBook Online Is A Cheaper Small Business Online Accounting System

Our roundup of online small business accounting systems earlier this year included QuickBooks Online, but at $295 a year that's overkill for smaller businesses. The newly-launched CashBook Online is a cheaper web-based option for small businesses from the same developer, priced at $198 a year.

CashBook Online handles payments, receipts, banking, adjustments, GST calculations and simple reporting. It can also auto-import banking data from St George, ANZ and NAB, and manually import data from other banks. (Reckon says it is in discussions with Westpac and Commonwealth to add auto-import for them as well.)

Although browser-based, the system does allow for offline work. One potentially handy feature is the ability to create rules to automatically categorise and handle regular payments; combined with auto-banking import, this could seriously minimise the amount of work you have to do on your books each month.

The one sneaky aspect of CashBook Online I don't like on a first look is that initially you have to sign up for a one-year, $198 subscription. After the first year, you can opt for monthly payments of $18.15 each. That's more expensive overall ($217.80 for the year). Nonetheless, I can't help thinking that if Reckon was fully confident of its product, it would let people trial the software on a month-by-month basis before converting to an annual price.

CashBook Online


    Banklink is a much better option for very small business wanting a cashbook type system. Banklink links to all the major banks, and includes credit cards as well. $18 to setup and very minor per transaction fee. Banklink has an online version, connects well to your accountants software to make BAS and tax prep a breeze - I know, I'm an Accountant using it for a range of clients. Functionality is great and includes debtors and creditors modules as well as payroll coming out - no additional cost, no annual fees (other than those identified) and all upgrades are free.
    check it out at (P.S - I don't get commissions or fees etc from them, just think it is a great product offering)

    I use a great accounting package Moneyworks 'Cashbook' from New Zealand. In my opinion its one of the best Mac (yes PC as well) products out there. There's no annual fee, its easy to use and hasonline help thats actually the company answering the phone and not a call centre in another country.

    I'm a bookkeeper that works solely with online accounting packages and would recommend two others being Saasu and Xero (I get no kickbacks for saying so).

    I have a feeling that I will not be the only one to recommend these and it is for good reason. As always, do your research. I have had a few client come FROM Quicken's online solution and well, they are now happy with the solution they are using.

      Problem with Saasu is that it's completely open period which can't be locked. So you can have some idiot go and change entries in past periods Good in theory program but in practice dangerous in non qualified hands. I spoke to Saasu about it and they could see the problem but didn't think it's an issue. As a Chartered Accountant is a deal breaker when reconmending software.

        Just to clarify, it is as open as you want it.
        - You CAN lock periods in Saasu, Settings > Transactions where you can Warn or STOP people entering transactions before and/or after dates you enter.
        - You can limit users roles so they cannot access these settings and voila problem solved.

        I don't want to sound like a salesman but feel free to contact me through the website on this. Misinformation helps no-one.

        Scott, that's not true. You can lock periods in Saasu and I can confidently say we win hands down on access level controls also.

    According to the Reckon customer service representative I spoke with today:

    - A definite NO to exporting of data in in any form. That means NO EXPORT even to excel.

    - The data file is locked to the online format and cannot be opened or converted to any of the standard quick-books formats.

    Good luck if your business happens to grow and need to upgrade.

    Xero is a rip off at $70 per month for multi currency. Wave Accounting is free, the downside is that it wont auto import from Australian banks. its does import paypal though.

      I just set up Wave accounting, and it does import from Australian Banks.

        Have used Wave a few months. It direct links to NAB in Australia. Can upload ANZ transaction files. Bendigo files need to be converted. Haven't tried any other banks.

    Just stumbled on this post reading the news....
    I use CoWorker Online.....for the past 5 years!!! They had full online accounting while everybody else was still contemplating if a thing like this would work. I operate my retail & wholesale patisserie with it. (3000+ transactions/month) Can't remember what I did before I had my iPad emailing and faxing invoices my staff stuffed up. Export your data to any format you like, bank statement import (from ALL banks) in various formats. For a non accountant and non geek, I make cakes, CoWorker has done the trick for me. Now they even have 7 different packages. Go and check out I'd be very interested to hear what you have to say. If you find or have used something that comes close to what these boys are doing...I'd like to hear about it!

      Thanks for that recommendation, Michael.

      I spent the nest part of a day trying to get CashBook Online configured to suit my (not so very) non-standard retail business, and in the end they were willing to give me a refund, but warned that it will take 4-5 weeks to reach my credit card!

      Main problem was totally non-customizable accounts. For example, rent was fixed as GST included; only other option was 'Sundry non-GST purchase. No opportunity to categorize different types of sales.No account for any sort of super, such as Super Guarantee contributions. No facility for GST withholding. Bank feeds limited to ANZ, NAB & St George. Free bank-linking ended 31st December 2011, but no-one could tell me how it much was going to be charged in future.

      Staggering ignorance about the product from everyone I spoke too, including the person who eventually agreed to organize a refund: in fact, she insisted initially that CashBook Online was for personal finance only, despite what was said on the Product Information page. Caveat emptor.

      Am now waiting for CoWorker to ring me back.

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