Where to Buy
When it’s time to make the move to a new accounting system, be sure to purchase it in a way that is right for your business. You could purchase your system at a retail store, from your accountant, from a software partner, or buy directly from the software company. Use these tips to help you decide which method works best for you and your business.
Buy Directly from the Software Developer
Buying your accounting software directly from the software developer can be a great way to get details about the system, and whether it’s right for your companies needs. A company representative can help you sort out which features you really need, and show you first-hand whether those features are in their system. Most software developers have an in-house staff who can assist with implementation, training, and support (Source: http://redwingsoftware.com/rwssn/home.aspx?page=329). Remember that before you purchase the software, conduct thorough research about the company, and ask them questions about how user friendly the system is, average response time in customer support issues, etc…
Buy from a Software Partner/Reseller
Software partners, often called “VARs” or Value Added Resellers, are typically familiar with the software system and can provide valuable resources for helping customers locally and in person. VARs offer a variety of valuable services including, implementation, development and support for the system. Many times, VARs can offer the same pricing as the developer of the software. Some accounting software companies sell exclusively through their VAR networks.
Buy from your Accountant
Some accountants offer recommendations of accounting systems to their customers. Since your accountant knows your business, he or she can make an educated recommendation that is based on the needs of your business. Some accountants may charge a fee for consulting time, but the information that they will provide you with is invaluable. Asking your accountant the type of accounting system they use is a great idea as well, as it may be helpful to use an accounting system that your accountant is also familiar with.
Buy from a Retail Store
Many office supply stores such as office depot and other stores sell accounting systems. Although retail stores may not know all the specific details about these accounting systems they do carry them in stock. Many of the programs available are broad and can fit a wide variety of businesses. If you are going to purchase a system at a retail store, be sure to do your research about the product well ahead of time. The store associates will likely not be able to answer detailed questions about the features offered within the accounting system, or how they can meet the needs of your business.
These tips can help you get a better idea of where to shop for a new accounting system for your business (Source: http://financialsoft.about.com/od/smallbusiness/ss/Accounting_Soft.htm). Keep in mind that, no matter where type of accounting system you purchase, you should be sure that the system can handle your needs and grow with your business well into the future.