One of the best ways to understand the market for QuickBooks add-ons (and QuickBooks) is to count the number of web pages with this or related terms.
Google had only two million QuickBooks add-ons links on September 26, 2010, but more than twenty million on December 18, 2011. However, it had less than seven million on January 24, 2014, so there are now thirteen million fewer QuickBooks Add-ons links. You can see how many links Google now has by clicking on QuickBooks Add-ons Links here. You also can compare this to less than 500 QuickBooks add-ons on the Marketplace Intuit site.
These add-on links use pages with words like QuickBooks interface and link to QuickBooks. The number of these links is amazing, considering there were still 23 million Google links to QuickBooks itself on January 24, 2014.
Of course, this largely relates to issue in the excellent article: The Demise of the QuickBooks Third Party Developer? These include that Intuit kept changing its proprietary access methods, without giving any of them full access, and then imposing a 20% fee on access. It also relates to strong competition from automatic web accounting programs like Xero. We took one look at Xero and said OMG! Xero is the Future of Accounting (which it is).
I discovered my first QuickBooks add-on in 1998. I used a QuickBooks beta test forum (as the only two-time winner of the top QuickBooks beta test prize) to ask, “What new feature do you want from QuickBooks?” The answers soon were more than 50% of forum traffic, but all wanted different things. Almost everyone agreed when I said Intuit would not make most of the changes, but a QB data base could let us all get what we wanted.
I soon coined the term QuickBooks add-ons and looked for related programs. Early developers said Intuit seemed “actively hostile” to their efforts. After years of listing QuickBooks add-ons on http://BlockTax.com/, and bombarding my QuickBooks friends and QuickBook newsgroups, QuickBooks add-ons became Intuit’s #1 priority. At around that time I began QuickBooks-add-ons.com, with the blessing of Intuit's CEO (Intuit could, of course, stop me from using its trademarked name). This site still has the largest list of QuickBooks Add-ons (about 8,000), though the Inuit Marketplace site has a better descriptions for about 500 good QuickBooks-Add-ons. To put these sites in perspective, I once had more than 25,000 hits a day, when the Intuit site had 25,000 a month.
Many programs broke add-ons when they upgraded. However, I never heard of a free SDK (software development kit) QuickBooks Add-on that broke, after a QuickBooks or SDK upgrade. One upgrade broke a keyboard macro QB Add-on, but Brad Smith (now Intuit CEO) got a fix for me in five days, the week before Christmas.
Why QuickBooks add-ons?
QuickBooks add-ons are not just for accountants. They are the fastest and easiest way you can work much faster and more accurately. Best-of-breed programs, of many types, can connect into your own fast and easy custom business management system. You will soon automate schedules, connections and records with airlines, banks, brokers, cars, customers, entertainers, friends, government, news, schools, suppliers & more! The nine million QuickBooks add-ons (twenty million QuickBooks Add-ons links) mean almost never outgrowing QuickBooks and resisting annual Intuit efforts to cripple old QuickBooks versions.
NEVER ENTER DATA TWICE! Especially, never enter data repeatedly and inconsistently, in many separate programs and on paper. Xero (and a future version of QuickBooks) will let you enter much less data, as banks, customers and and countless work together to improve your accuracy and speed, while doing much of your old work for you. This is one of the important things companies like Walmart so efficient.
Why will your customers, suppliers, banks and credit card companies help you this way? They will help you for the same reason that you will help them. It is in everyone's best interest that we use electronic data interchanges to automate and speed up data entry, while making them easier and more accurate.
How can you find QuickBooks Add-ons?
You once could go to my BlockTax.com or QuickBooks-Add-Ons.com websites. You also can go to the Intuit list of QuickBooks add-ons, which has around 500 tested, reviewed and rated programs. However, it costs around $5,000 a year to list, test and review an Intuit add-on.
It has been years since I updated QuickBooks-Add-Ons,com. I, therefore, created this Google always-updated search for the:
After clicking it, simply add your term to to the beginning and search again. You also might add review or reviews and limit it to pages updated in the last year.
By the way, Xero keeps increasing our access with a free industry standard access method. That is why Xero already has more than 300 Xero add-ons and is approximately doubling this and staff each year. That also is why QuickBooks has been copying many Xero features in the last 16 months, including its free industry standard add-ons interface.