Sage50 Alternatives:
Why Sage accounting software may not be right for you


See how Gravity compares to leading cloud accounting solutions. Request a demo

  • Comparing Sage 50cloud alternatives
  • Comparing Sage 50cloud alternatives

    While QuickBooks is likely the largest among Sage 50cloud competitors, there are plenty of others. Many are small business accounting software solutions or larger enterprises. Few are designed for medium-sized companies with multiple entities.

    The number of G2 reviews for QuickBooks Online far exceeds Sage 50cloud reviews, with almost 30 reviews every one for Sage50. While both solutions have similar functionality, QuickBooks Online has lower monthly rates. Reviewers also said QuickBooks has stronger ongoing product support and a better product roadmap.

    Similarly, Xero seems to have a more engaged user base compared to Sage 50cloud, with about five reviews for every one Sage 50cloud review on G2. Xero’s pricing is more comparable to Sage business cloud accounting. One key difference is the company size; Sage 50cloud has more reviews from mid-sized businesses (23%) compared to just 15% for Xero.

    However, users of both systems noted the limitations as their companies grew.

    “It’s a little too simple for our company,” one user said of Sage 50cloud. “Too many complex transactions and business segments, which Sage is much too limited for.

    Another user noted he had to purchase several apps and add-ons to get the functionality he needed in Xero.

    “As business grew, I noticed most features felt unpolished and were lacking functionality that would make them feel complete,” he said.

    Once again, small business users seem to prefer FreshBooks for its ease of use and the direction of the company compared to Sage. However, users of both solutions again noticed limitations as their companies grew. They found they had to purchase add-ons for basic accounting features or integrations or pay for additional storage.

    “If I want to store my client data, it can get rather expensive,” one user said of FreshBooks on G2. “Going from 25 clients to 50 is a huge jump in price. I have to mark the client as deleted in order to not have the client count against my client number.”

  • A quick history of Sage 50
  • A quick history of Sage 50

    Unlike enterprise-level solutions within the Sage family, Sage 50cloud wasn’t originally designed to support growing businesses with multiple companies. Although newer versions of Sage 50cloud have multi-entity accounting capabilities, they are limited. To understand these limitations, it’s helpful to know how Sage evolved. After being acquired by Sage US in 1999, Peachtree Software, which had been on the market since 1978, became known as Peachtree by Sage, which was later rebranded Sage 50. Sage 50 is now advertised on the company website under the name "Sage 50cloud."

    Today, Sage 50cloud offers three different options:

    Sage 50cloud Pro Accounting

    This is the most pared-down and least expensive version of Sage 50. This version allows a single user and handles tasks such as invoicing and bill tracking, expense management, purchase orders, inventory management sales tax reports, and other basic accounting needs.

    Sage 50cloud Premium Accounting

    With Sage 50cloud Premium Accounting, you can have up to five users and handle multi-entity accounting for up to 10 entities. It includes a few advanced features including advanced reporting, budgeting, and job costing.

    Sage 50cloud Quantum Accounting

    Sage 50cloud Quantum Accounting is the most robust of the Sage 50 series. It offers role-based security access, workflow and inventory management tools, and faster processing, in addition to the features from the previous versions. This version of Sage 50 allows for up to 40 users.

    While it bills itself as multi-entity accounting software, review site Software Connect describes Quantum as being "primarily used as an industry-specific option for manufacturers or construction companies." This means the software might not be well-suited to your particular industry, regardless of the number of entities it serves.

  • Is Sage 50 really cloud accounting software?
  • Is Sage 50 really cloud accounting software?

    Despite its new name and the fact that key features of the software can be accessed remotely, Sage 50cloud is not a true cloud-based accounting software. The company's own website calls it "desktop accounting software connected to the cloud" and links to other Sage products for visitors who are looking for cloud-native solutions. "It's best suited to companies who … aren't averse to desktop software, and whose remote employees have their own installations of the software so they can share company data through Sage's Remote Data Access," a PCMag review of the software states.

    As one G2 reviewer notes, Sage 50cloud doesn’t offer a mobile accounting mobile app or allow for mobile access, which has become essential in today’s anywhere workforce.

    Aside from the lack of convenience and flexibility, the fact that Sage 50cloud doesn't fully leverage cloud technology creates potential for technical challenges. More than one user review on the site Software Advice mentions disconnects and failures to sync data between the on-premise software and remote devices.

  • Sage 50cloud accounting pricing
  • Sage 50cloud accounting pricing

    Sage 50cloud, formerly known as Sage 50, can be attractive to businesses because at first glance, it's an inexpensive solution from a well-known brand. However, the entry level version, Sage Pro Accounting, is only for a single user.

    As of January 2024, regular subscription costs for the two versions of Sage 50cloud that accommodate multi-entity businesses are:

    • Sage 50cloud Premium Accounting: $970 per year for one user and $2,222 for five users, which does not include the added cost of Microsoft 365.
    • Sage 50cloud Quantum Accounting (up to 40 users): $1,610 for one user; $3,080 for five users, also not including Microsoft 365.

    Even these solutions don't have quite the seamless multi-entity functionality businesses may be looking for. For that, your best bet would be Sage 300cloud. Though it does not have standardized pricing, according to review site Software Connect, the median estimated spending range for buyers considering Sage 300 is $23,000.

    That may still seem affordable compared to the cost of a large ERP system, which can be thousands of dollars a month, not including implementation fees.

    However, the advertised Sage 50cloud accounting pricing doesn't tell the whole story.

  • What’s not included in Sage 50 software costs?
  • What’s not included in Sage 50 software costs?

    As a result of the pandemic, many businesses learned the hard way that having the option to accommodate remote work isn't just an employee perk: it's imperative for any company that wants to continue operations even when disaster strikes. In most cases, remote work on a regular basis is only possible with software built in the cloud.

    Cloud software brings numerous advantages

    No need for space-consuming servers
    No system downtime for upgrades and updates
    Power outages or computer glitches won’t result in data loss
    Real-time data access from any location

    Since the word "cloud" is included in Sage 50's name, you might assume you’re getting all these benefits with your Sage50 subscription cost. Unfortunately, that’s not the case.

    In the software company's own words, Sage 50cloud is "desktop accounting software connected to the cloud.”

    The distinction between this and cloud-native software is important because it means only some features of the solution are available off-premises and that data must be synced (which can be a glitchy endeavor) rather than automatically updating in real time. This is also true of Sage 100, an ERP that according to NerdWallet is best suited for sales and manufacturing businesses.

    To overcome this, you need cloud hosting. Sage 50 cloud hosting services can cost anywhere from $40 to $75 per user per month, depending on your company's needs.

  • Integration costs add up
  • Integration costs add up

    Sage 50cloud Premium and Quantum offer much of the basic functionality a small- or medium-sized business needs, including invoice and bill tracking, automated bank reconciliation, audit trails, and inventory tracking. Sage 300cloud claims similar abilities but on a more complex level, including multi-location inventory management and a multi-currency interface.

    There are some capabilities not included in the lower-tier Sage products that may not be at the top of your feature requirements list but are extremely valuable, such as automated approvals.

    While most of the Marketplace apps require consumers to contact the vendor for pricing, here are a few examples of what's available to help fill the functionality gaps in Sage products:

    • Sage Enterprise Intelligence provides real time business intelligence and data management. It integrates with Sage 100cloud, Sage 300cloud, and ERP platform Sage X3.
    • Sage AP Automation automates each step of the accounts payable workflow in Sage 50cloud, 100cloud, and 300cloud.
    • SwiftCount provides full inventory management for Sage 300cloud at $299 per month.
  • How does the cost of Sage 50 compare to other solutions?
  • How does the cost of Sage 50 compare to other solutions?

    On the surface, Sage 50 may seem like a bargain, and it's touted on Software Connect as "one of the most popular, inexpensive, and long-running accounting and tax software and options on the market."

    Again, there are qualifications to that statement. Sage 50's perceived value is one of the most common complaints in Software Connect user reviews.

    The regular price for the Pro version was $595 per year as of February 2024, but that is for one user and, more importantly, a single entity.

    The Premium version costs $970 annually for one user. Sage 50cloud Quantum Accounting costs $1,610 for one user, and then there's the added cost for integrating Microsoft 365.

    These numbers don't take into account all of the costs of choosing Sage 50 as your enterprise's accounting software. There's also the cost of installing and implementing the software, and the cost of third-party integrations to handle tasks like invoicing financial reporting, payment processing, and time tracking can add up. One G2 user notes Sage 50 is “overly complicated to set up” and there are considerably fewer integrations with third-party software compared to QuickBooks.

    “The integrations available are extremely costly for a small business,” the user noted.

  • Gravity accounting features in common with Sage accounting software
  • Gravity accounting features in common with Sage accounting software

    Bank reconciliation

    Bank reconciliation time-consuming even when you only have one company. When you have multiple entities within your enterprise and you're using Sage 50 accounting software, you’ll have to log in and out multiple times to compare transactions to your own internal records.

    With Gravity Software, however, bank reconciliation takes as little as three minutes.

    Gravity integrates with more than 7,000 banks and credit card providers in the U.S. and Canada. You can see bank transactions side-by-side with transactions recorded in Gravity for easy matching. Gravity calculates and displays the difference between any two selected transactions. A difference of zero means these transactions can be reconciled.

    You can also create rules governing reconciliation, such as allowing check transactions with the same number and amount to be automatically reconciled.

    Payment Portal
    Automated invoicing with customer payments

    Accounts payable (AP) automation uses digital technologies to reduce manual data entry, increase accuracy, and process vendor invoices and payments faster.

    Processing invoices efficiently is challenging for multi-entity companies that may share expenses and revenue among many locations. Without software designed for multiple entities, accounting teams often find themselves logging in and out of different databases for each location and copying and pasting the same information many times. Aside from creating additional work for them, it also makes your organization more prone to error.

    While both Gravity and Sage 50 offer AP, Gravity is designed to make it easy for multi-entity companies with the addition of AI technology. Using Microsoft Cognitive Services, Gravity’s AI engine extracts data from invoices and creates vouchers, saving significant time and costs. A company that processes 1,000 bills each month and pays an accounts payable employee $20 per hour can save as much as $2,400 per month, or nearly $20,000 per year.

    Financial reports

    Unlike Sage Accounting, Gravity Software is designed specifically to simplify multi-entity accounting and consolidated financial reporting.

    With Gravity, you can store financial information for all your companies in a single database. You can create shared master files for customers or vendors, enabling quick data entry and effortless access control. When information is updated once, the data synchronizes across all selected entities.

    You can also create reports showing the main account, individual entities, and additional dimensions within the same view. Dimension codes allow for expenses to be organized by projects, events, employees or any other category within the same report.

    Gravity leverages Microsoft PowerBI for built-in business intelligence, simplifying the creation of personalized dashboards and charts with the specific data requirements of individuals within your organization. You can give your executive stakeholders a high-level overview of performance or create reports relevant to leaders.

  • What makes Gravity Software different?
  • What makes Gravity Software different?

    While Sage 50 may be adequate for smaller companies with little need for off-site work, multiple reviews on Software Advice and Software Connect mention the software is quickly outgrown or "not enough" for their company.

    Ironically, others feel Sage 50 is overly complex.

    "Its advanced abilities would be overwhelming for many small businesses that need more simplicity and a friendlier, more state-of-the-art user experience," PCMag's review reads.

    Gravity Software is a user-friendly, cloud-based accounting solution designed especially for small- to medium-sized multi-entity businesses that are working to scale up. Unlike Sage 50, Gravity is a true cloud-native solution, meaning there is no need for on-premises installation and all data is stored in the cloud for instant access. (No crossing your fingers hoping your data syncs properly!)

    Gravity is built on the Microsoft Power Platform, so it comes with built-in business intelligence through Microsoft Power BI. It integrates easily with many of the features your organization already uses in the Microsoft 365 suite, such as email, Microsoft Teams and Excel.

    You can also create personalized, automated workflows with Microsoft Power Automate to save time on manual processes like expense approvals and billing reminders.

    Gravity is designed for many types of multi-entity businesses, from family offices and franchises to healthcare organizations and investment firms. It eliminates the need to log in and out of multiple databases to manage inter-company transactions or create consolidated financial reports. Its multi-currency accounting capabilities are designed to support your company as it expands globally. Gravity even includes investment management functionality, so you can handle all your company's assets with one solution.

    If you’re a small business owner thriving with a single location, Sage 50cloud is just another one of many options that will likely be sufficient to meet your needs. But if you’re expanding quickly (or already experiencing growing pains), it’s time to upgrade to Gravity Software.

    Gravity Software vs. Sage 50cloud

    Grow faster and stay agile with a true cloud accounting software solution

    Sage 50cloud is a great starting point for small businesses with basic accounting needs, such as managing accounts receivable and accounts payable. However, it wasn’t designed for multi-entity accounting, and it’s not a true cloud-based accounting software. This means it’s not equipped to support fast-growing companies with multiple locations and a need for agile, mobile-friendly solutions. For instance, users report experiencing disconnects and failures to sync data between the on-premise software and 
remote devices.

    Gravity Software
    Sage 50cloud
    Number of users
    40 (Quantum version)
    User definable dashboards
    Personalized data entry screens
    User defined fiscal periods
    User defined dimensions
    Drag and drop journal and invoice imports
    Purchase order receiving (3-way matching)
    Full transactional audit trail
    Premium & Quantum
    Ease of use
    Integrated CRM
    Inventory tracking & reporting
    Investment management
    Multi-entity accounting
    Premium & Quantum
    Multi-currency conversion
    Quality of support
    Subscription billing

    Everything you need to grow, nothing to hold you back

    Gravity offers full functionality to support your growing multi-entity business as you grow. Experience the power of better, smarter accounting.
    New call-to-action