When it comes to accounting software, there are plenty of platforms to choose from. XERO and MYOB are the dominators of the market, and if you are involved in running a business, it’s likely that you’ve heard of them. However, there are plenty of differences between the two, and identifying the right one for you will depend on your needs, the size of your business, and other factors. Here at PaintAccess, we want to help make this decision as easy as possible for our valued customers. We’ve put together this blog to outline the features of XERO and MYOB, the differences between the two platforms, and what to pay attention to when choosing the right accounting software for your business.

Why do I need accounting software?

The first thing you may be wondering is “why do I need accounting software, anyway?’ Accounting software like XERO and MYOB helps you to keep everything in one place, allowing you to track incoming cash as well as providing powerful reporting tools. It’s easy to forecast future cash flows, track down late payments, and get paid easily -  making running a business easier than ever. 

What is MYOB?

MYOB stands for “Mind Your Own Business”. It is a cloud accounting system that offers different tiers of software - ranging from simple tools for small businesses to advanced tools for companies looking for a comprehensive, end-to-end system. MYOB was founded in the 1980’s by a team of developers who developed accounting software. Although originally founded in the US, MYOB ceased operations outside of Australia and New Zealand in 2008. 

What features does MYOB offer?

MYOB is an accounting solution that was designed with the user in mind. The interface, features, and mobile app are all user-friendly and intuitive to use. If you are a small business needing to keep track of your transactions, MYOB is a great starting point. MYOB keeps track of everything needed for GST, tax, expenses, and payroll, with important charts right at your fingertips when you need them. It supports a range of operating systems such as Windows, Mac, and Mobil. Although it has less features than a more advanced accounting system, it has affordability and ease of use in its favour. 

What is XERO?

In comparison to MYOB, XERO is aimed at the smaller end of the market and focuses on the most important features such as stock processing, purchase orders, and expenses. Xero allows users to send invoices and accept payments through multiple platforms including credit and debit cards, Paypal, and payment gateways. It covers the basic accounting needs that small businesses may require, at a cheap price. Currently, the company has three offices in New Zealand and six offices in Australia, as well as offices across the UK, US, Canada, Singapore, Hong Kong, and South Africa. Its products are used in over 180 countries.

How do they compare?

Xero’s Pricing System

Xero has tiered pricing in order to cater to different types of businesses. Its pricing is quite appealing if you’re a small business to medium business as one monthly payment gives you access to most features. However, don’t forget that there are some additional fees that you should keep in mind - such as having to pay for a third-party payment processor if you want a full-service payroll solution. 

Starter Plan

  • $9/month
  • Ideal for very small businesses which just need to record a small number of transactions

Growing Plan

  • $30/month
  • Offers unlimited transactions, invoices, bills, and quotes
  • Some feature limitations

Established Plan 

  • $60/month 
  • Offers unlimited bills, quotes, transactions, and invoices
  • Includes extra features including project tracking, expense management, and multi-currency accounting 

MYOB’s Pricing System 

MYOB Essentials 

Essentials Payroll 

  • $10/month
  • Ideal for those only requiring payrolls
  • Features single touch payroll
  • Allows you to pay up to 4 employees

Accounting Starter 

  • Ideal for those just starting out
  • Single touch payroll
  • Pay 1 employee
  • Link your bank account - up to 25 transactions per month
  • Track and prepare BAS and GST
  • Send quotes and up to 5 invoices per month
  • Manage expenses and up to 5 bills per month 
  • Mobile apps for quotes, invoicing, and receipt capture
  • Card and BPay payments
  • Track jobs - link income and expenses to a job or location 


  • Great for small businesses and sole traders 
  • Single touch payroll
  • Link your bank account - unlimited transactions 
  • Track and prepare BAS and GST
  • Send unlimited quotes and invoices
  • Manage expenses and unlimited bills
  • Mobile apps for quotes, invoicing, and receipt capture
  • Card and BPay payments
  • Track jobs - link income and expenses to a job or location 

Accounting + Payroll 

  • Perfect for those taking care of business and payroll 
  • Single touch payroll
  • Pay unlimited employees
  • Track and prepare BAS and GST
  • Send unlimited quotes and invoices
  • Manage expenses and unlimited bills
  • Mobile apps for quotes, invoicing, and receipt capture
  • Card and BPay payments
  • Track jobs - link income and expenses to a job or location 

With MYOB Essentials, you can manage your business anytime, anywhere on your mobile. The cash flow tracking feature is conveniently located on your dashboard, allowing you to see any potential problems before they occur. Detailed reports show accurate figures and clear projections for your business. It’s easy to manage invoices and customer payments online, allowing you to customise and send invoices, get paid, automatically track invoices, and remind customers. The Single Touch Payroll feature means that you can manage employees in your software, approve timesheets, create rosters, and track locations from any device. 

MYOB Advanced

  • $99/month
  • Can work out to be quite expensive for bigger companies that have lots of users that want to send invoices, handle payments, or work with customers 

MYOB Advanced is a cloud business management software that is tailored to mid-size organisations. It delivers finance, inventory management, manufacturing, and payroll functionality. It includes the MYOB Advanced Business (cloud ERP suite) and the MYOB Advanced People payroll and HR suite. 

Which software is right for me?

Both platforms are cloud-based with the option to access services from any modern device with an internet connection. MYOB is a more established company whilst XERO is newer but still reputable. MYOB’s pricing tiers are generally more “friendly” whilst the bottom tier in XERO’s pricing options is limited in terms of the number of transactions you can log per month and invoices you can send. Additionally, since MYOB lacks some of the more advanced features, you may be better off going in a different direction if you are looking for more customisable chart options. 

As XERO focuses on only the main tools of accounting software, a successful small business may outgrow it quickly. Even if you add third-party extensions, a growing business may require higher levels of control, flexibility, and precision that growing businesses require. However, many small businesses may find that XERO’s payroll and basic reporting functionality suits them fine, while larger businesses may struggle to find everything they need. 

Overall, when making the decision between XERO and MYOB, it’s important to consider both the needs of your business and budget. For those on a strict budget, XERO offers a cheap starting plan for only $9 per month, however, this plan only offers very basic capabilities. This plan may be useful for a very small business just starting out, that is only looking to record a handful of transactions per month. If you don’t want to invest in more expensive software, you can always start with a basic Xero plan and move to MYOB when you feel your business has outgrown it. 

If you’re still feeling unsure or have further questions, don’t be afraid to reach out to the customer support teams on either service. Remember that you are not “locked-in” no matter what decision you make, and it’s a good idea to play around with both services before you make your decision. Both platforms often have free trials - so keep an eye out for them! Both XERO and MYOB are established, trustworthy platforms that offer plenty of helpful features for small and mid-size businesses. Finding the right one for you may require a combination of different considerations, but whichever one you choose, you can rest assured that you’re getting quality accounting software for a reasonable price.

Can I transfer accounting services?

With the rise of cloud-based accounting services, the good news is that it’s easy to move from one service to another. If you want to switch from XERO to MYOB, the good news is that you can automate a lot of the process. Whether you’re looking to just copy over some data so you can compare the two services, or if you want to make a permanent move, XERO has you covered. If you’re using a supported version of MYOB, you can simply export your files as a CSV and then re-import them.