5 Quicken Alternatives Now that Quicken Online is Dead
Not all that long ago, Quicken was one of the leading giants in the personal finance sphere. Their software was robust and did everything you could want in a software. After creating Quicken Online, it became obsolete.
If you’ve been using that software and are looking for alternatives, you’re not alone. Let’s take a look at why Quicken Online was so great, and some alternatives you can use instead.
What Was Quicken Online?
Quicken software was created way back when people still used MS-DOS. (To the over-thirty crowd, you know what we’re talking about) It was built on a database structure. This made it a good option for managing complicated financial systems. But it also made cross-platform compatibility difficult. So Intuit, Quicken’s creating company, had to keep coming up with new models.
And, in fact, they still do. Quicken software is still a great option if you want a robust way to manage your personal or business finances. But it wasn’t best for beginners who were starting out.
This is why back in 2007, Intuit launched Quicken Online. One of the tool’s major differences was the fact that it did not track investments, which Quicken software users had come to expect. But it also made tracking everyday spending much easier.
Back then, financial software that actually synced with your bank accounts was a new concept. So Quicken Online jumped on that bandwagon early. You could connect your checking account directly to Quicken Online, and it would automatically import your transactions.
Quicken Online also helped people become more aware of their overall financial situation. For instance, new users would get a list of recurring bills suggested from their previous 90 days’ worth of transactions in each connected account. Then, users could set up bill reminders.
Quicken Online’s interface was sleek and user-friendly for the time, though today it would feel clunky and out of date. But it still gave users a quick way to get insight into their spending, saving, and other financial patterns.
Quicken Online also acted in an app-like way for iPhone users, specifically. These users could log into their account to view their updated balances and five latest transactions in each account. With transactions downloaded nightly, the feature is a far cry from the to-the-minute financial insight today’s apps offer.
The program eventually rolled out an online bill paying option. This was meant to help users manage short-term cash flow and to make their online bill paying easier. And Intuit, of course, tied Quicken Online into its TurboTaxOnline products, as well.
So What Happened to Quicken Online?
In short, it seems that other platforms were quicker to innovate than Intuit. They offered consumers better options than Quicken Online, and for cheaper. So in 2009, Intuit announced its $170 million acquisition of the still-popular financial management platform Mint.com.
Quicken then moved its Quicken Online users over to Mint.com, which was already a well-functioning platform for the most part. It did not go well. Quicken customers weren’t happy to lose their data, and the change was a frustrating one.
With that said, Mint.com still consistently ranks in the top ten lists for personal financial management software options. It’s in my personal top three!
In more recent history, however, Intuit ended up failing to preserve Quicken, which was overshadowed by its more popular products, QuickBooks and TurboTax. In April of 2016, Inuit sold Quicken to the private equity investment firm, H.I.G. Capital.
Upon acquisition, the CEO of Quicken, Eric Dunn, remarked that it was “…the start of a new era for Quicken..” , and that “The increased investment in Quicken…will accelerate those efforts and strengthen the value we bring to consumers.”
At the same time as the acquisition by H.I.G., Quicken announcing their new free budgeting feature Mac users which allowed customers to set, track, and analyze their budget.
What Other Options Are There?
If you’re looking for an alternative for Quicken Online, you’re in luck. The following money management apps are great options to consider.
Want a tool that accounts for everyday spending but has a heavier focus on long-term financial planning? Personal Capital may be exactly what you’re looking for. Like Mint, it features a user-friendly, image-driven interface. And like Mint, it syncs with your existing accounts to bring in data automatically.
Unlike Mint, though, Personal Capital has always had a heavy focus on investments. It helps you keep track of your net worth, and it also offers a variety of advising tools. For instance, you can use the investment checkup tool to find out your current asset allocation compared with Personal Capital’s suggested allocation. In other words, it’s the most comprehensive financial tool on the market — and it’s free. You can read our full review of this tool here.
What’s great about Money Patrol is it’s a budgeting tool aiming at helping people improve their financial situation. Plus, it’s affordable. Once you link your accounts, the app starts to analyze your spending habits. It’ll even send you reminders such as ones for upcoming bulls.
You can even dive into the detailed budget reports and look at the last six months worth of transactions. Plus there’s one for large and recurring transactions. If you’re not someone who is naturally organized, Money Patrol is an affordable option to make sense of where your money is coming and going.
MoneyPatrol is a money management service with the goal of helping people improve their financial health. For people who are a bit more disorganized with their finances, they will likely benefit the most from MoneyPatrol. The service helps improve financial health through analysis of your spending and sending reminders of upcoming payments. You can read our full review of this tool here.
Pocketsmith connects to over 12,000 financial institutions in order to import your transactions. That means you can add your bank accounts, credit cards, loans, and even investment accounts so you know what’s going on across all your finances. You can also zoom in on each account to see more details.
While it’s great that you can see all your finances in one place, what makes Pocketsmith shine is its financial project feature. Basically, you can forecast as far as 30 years into the future with all your accounts. That way, you can get a pretty good idea if you’re on the right track with your finances. Plus you can play around with “what if” scenarios to figure out what to do to improve your situation — whether that’s saving more in your investment accounts to aggressively paying off even more debt. You can read our full review of this tool here.
Empower is an intuitive budgeting tool that offers the ability to import transactions, customize categories for your budget and see monthly reports of your financial behaviors. Empower also has digital banking features — it offers a savings account where you can earn interest on your deposits. Plus their automatic savings function helps you set aside funds each week — it also sets aside more or less depending on whether the app detects if you have more money coming in. You can read our full review of this tool here.
The great thing about CountAbout is that you can easily import your financial data from Quicken and Mint. That way you don’t have to worry about losing your data that you’ve been using on another budgeting app. Afterward, it’ll automatically sync your old and new financial data. If you’re after a basic budgeting tool that allows you to look at your transactions, spending, and see where you’re at, then CountAbout is a great choice. Plus, it’s ad-free, unlike Mint. You can read our full review of this tool here.
Not sure which of these options will work best for you? Get our breakdown of the best budget tools here.