The Top Tax Software for Small Businesses in 2021

With the right tax software, your small business can save time and maximize deductions when it comes to filing your small business taxes. The size and complexity of your company make all the difference when selecting the right tax solution for you. The Blueprint takes a look at some of the best tax software options on the market to help you make the best choice for your business.

Top Rated

H&R Block Self-Employed

H&R Block recognized that people are interested in preparing their taxes themselves, so they offer both a downloadable application and an online tax preparation program easy enough for anyone to use.

Best for SMBs

eSmart Tax

eSmart Tax from Liberty Tax is one of the lesser known tax preparation offerings available on the market today. If you’re looking for something different, check out what eSmart Tax has to offer.

Easiest to Use

TurboTax Self-Employed

TurboTax is one of the most recognizable names when it comes to tax software, with good reason. They offer a variety of plans ranging from free, for simple returns, to business, for corporations.

Best Features

TaxAct Self-Employed

TaxAct Self-Employed is part of TaxAct’s suite of tax preparation applications that are available online, or as a download that can be installed on your desktop or laptop computer.

Best Value

TaxSlayer Self-Employed

Though not a household name like its competitors, TaxSlayer is a worthy competitor in the online tax preparation category, offering four plans: Simply Free, Classic, Premium, and Self-Employed.

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Tax time. Those two words can strike fear in many of us, particularly if we’re wading through the maze of filing taxes for our small business for the first time. But filing your business taxes doesn’t have to be scary.

Online tax software, sometimes referred to as online tax service, can be a lifesaver for small business owners struggling with filing business taxes for the first time. The following tax filing services offer small businesses an easy way to track their business income, manage business expenses, and get the small business deductions they deserve.

While most tax preparation software applications are able to do these things, it’s how they differentiate themselves that makes the most difference.

If you’re ready to find the best online tax filing software or service, stay right where you are. Our tax software comparison highlights the best features in each of these applications, making it easier to find the software that is best for your business.

Our top picks for the best Tax Software:

Top Rated

1. H&R Block Self-Employed

   
Easiest to Use

2. TurboTax Self-Employed

   
Best Value

3. TaxSlayer Self-Employed

   
Best Features

4. TaxAct Self-Employed

   
Best for SMBs

5. eSmart Tax

   

What The Blueprint looks for in a great tax software

We all have different requirements when we’re looking for great software of any kind, including tax software. Some may pay particularly close attention to how easy an application is to use, while others place more emphasis on the application’s features.

Here are some of the things the Blueprint looked for when reviewing these widely-used tax preparation applications.

Ease of use

We all want software to be loaded with cool features, but we also want it to be easy to access and use those features. In a perfect world, software applications would all be intuitive, so you don’t have to spend hours staring at the screen wondering how to access a feature or perform a function.

That’s why ease of use is so important. During a review, we pay particularly close attention to how easy a product is to use.

While tech-savvy individuals and those experienced in a particular software application will find navigation a breeze, for the rest of us, an application’s ease of use can be the deciding factor in whether to purchase it.

Less is more

Instead of spending a lot of time entering a tremendous amount of data into a tax preparation application, wouldn’t it be nice to be able to import the data found on your W-2 or 1099?

If you have only one 1099, it’s probably not a big deal, but if you’re self-employed, it’s likely you’re receiving at least a few 1099s at year end. Being able to import these forms can save you a tremendous amount of time.

Access to a tax professional

This can be particularly important to new business owners who have never filled out a Schedule C and have no idea which business expenses are deductible.

While all of the tax preparation software applications we examined do a good job (some better than others) at finding adjustments and deductions that your small business is entitled to, filling out a Schedule C for the first time is daunting. That’s why having access to a tax professional can be key.

You may feel you’ve entered everything correctly, and chances are you have, but there’s nothing better than having an experienced tax preparer or CPA look at your return prior to submitting it to the IRS. Chances are everything is correct, but with access to a tax professional, you don’t have to take that chance.


How your business can benefit from using tax software

Your small business can benefit in many ways from using tax software. Here are just a few:

Save time

You’d be amazed at how quickly you can complete your tax return using tax preparation software. All tax preparation software is designed to be easy and efficient, taking you through the entire process in less time than you may expect.

If you’re still preparing your taxes on paper, make the move to tax preparation software. You will never go back.

Maximize deductions

Unless you’re a CPA or experienced tax preparer, you may not know what deductions are available to you. In fact, if this is the first year you’ll be filing a tax return for your business, you may not know about any of the tax deductions you can take.

Tax software solves that problem immediately. It analyzes your answers to some simple questions asked at the beginning of the tax preparation process, guiding you to available deductions, credits, and adjustments that are all designed to reduce your tax liability.

Help avoid audits

The word ‘audit’ can strike fear in the best of us. While no tax software can guarantee that you won’t be audited, what they can do is reduce the risk of being audited by helping you prepare an accurate tax return. Not only that, but many of these applications also offer audit protection, guiding you through the entire audit process.


Frequently Asked Questions for Tax Software

How do I know which product is right for my business?

You don’t. However, there are ways to research each tax preparation application to see if they’re a good fit. For instance, in our tax software reviews, we look at things such as whether they’re a good fit for those filing their business tax returns for the first time, or if they’re better suited to those who know their way around tax preparation software, and more importantly, tax forms.

Is live support necessary?

While it may not always be necessary, it is nice to have access to live support personnel when preparing your taxes. Luckily, all of the business plans offered include access to both technical support and tax accounting support personnel.

Do I have to know the latest changes in the tax code in order to use tax preparation software?

Nope. That’s the software developer's job to keep their product up to date with the latest tax rules and regulations. Your only job is to find the application that works for you.