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.