Best Payroll Services: 2023

Payroll services make it easy to calculate employee pay and deliver payments. It can be difficult and complicated to manage payroll on your own, especially when you have multiple employees. The IRS data shows that 40% of small businesses pay an average $845 annually in penalties.

Payroll services take care of all the work and keep you informed about any state laws so you can concentrate on running your business. Payroll services that are best will provide an automated solution to collect employee time, calculate and process payroll, as well as free tax filings at the end of the year.

Payroll services is a broad term that covers both payroll software that you can use to process your payroll and outsourced services that do it for you. Each removes the concern about whether or not you are doing payroll correctly and allows you to manage payroll efficiently and without the need for a large team.

We reviewed and researched more than 20 payroll services. Then we chose the top seven, based on price, features, ease-of-use, customer service, and other factors. These are our top picks.


Gusto is our top overall payroll service. It is simple to use and offers an all-in one solution that will work for most businesses. Gusto is affordable and has all the features that small businesses need. Gusto can automate your entire payroll and even help you service businesses across multiple states. This makes it a great choice for any business, but Gusto really stands out for small businesses who need more assistance.

Here is a detailed description of Gusto’s payroll services:

Pricing: Prices from $39-$149 + $6-$12 per employee per month

It’s very easy to use

Tax Services: Provides a penalty-free guarantee on taxes, automatically calculates taxes, withholdings and automatically creates end-of year tax forms

Year-End Fees

Accounting Integrations: QuickBooks and Xero are just a few of the many accounting software options available.

Gusto’s customer support is also highly rated. You can contact them by phone, chat, or email. Chat is available between 6 and 4 p.m. PT. Phone hours vary depending on the level of service. Both are available Monday through Friday. If they choose the most expensive plan, users can get a dedicated team who knows their account well.

Visit our Gusto review for more info 


Gusto offers many of the same features as Intuit QuickBooks Payroll, including health benefits for employees. QuickBooks Payroll is our second-place finisher for best overall. This is due to the combination of their comprehensive offering and their seamless integration with QuickBooks, which has been the most popular accounting software for small business. Gusto is slightly more expensive than Intuit, but they offer a comparable price and a solid service. This is especially true if you are using QuickBooks.

Here is a detailed breakdown of Intuit Payroll services:

Pricing: Prices from $45 to $125 plus $4 to $10 per person per month

Easy to use: The easiest QuickBooks integration on this list.

Tax Services: Tax Penalty Protection, 1099 E-File, Auto-Calculates Withholdings and Company Tax Payments are all integrated directly into QuickBooks accounting software

Year-End Fees

Accounting Integrations: QuickBooks accounting, which they also make, most other major accounting platforms

Intuit has an excellent customer support system that is built around their products. Although their payroll service isn’t the most well-known part of the business, they still support it as much as QuickBooks accounting. Their support is available via live chat and phone from 6:00 to 6:00 PM Pacific time. You can also access their online payroll support center, where you can find additional assistance through FAQs and guides.


Wave Payroll is the best pricing option because it has a flat rate that changes depending on where you are in the country, rather than increasing the cost by adding features. Wave Payroll also includes free accounting and billing software, which you can combine with it. This makes it an even more affordable option. Wave provides a simple payroll program that you can use for free for 30 days. Only 14 states have the option to receive free tax filings.

Here is a detailed explanation of Wave’s payroll services:

Pricing: $35 per Month in the 14 States they File Taxes in, $20 per Month in All Other States, plus $6 per Employee or Independent Contractor per Month

Wave Accounting Software is very easy to use.

Tax Services: Only available in 14 states, but includes California, New York, Texas, and Texas.

Year-End Fees – Issue year-end W2s or 1099s in 14 States, which are included in the price

Accounting Integrations: Wave Accounting and QuickBooks

Wave’s customer service ratings online are average. Wave is not regarded as a very helpful team by many users who call them. However, most of the reviews are related to Wave’s payments product. Customers can submit support tickets, chatbots, live chats, or submit help requests. They also have a Help Center that includes tutorials and articles.


Justworks, a professional employer organization (PEO), will manage your payroll for you. PEOs have the disadvantage that your employees become employees of the PEO, so you are less in control of what happens. Justworks is our top-rated outsourcing payroll service due to its simplicity, pricing and the variety of HR functions it can outsource with payroll.

Here is a detailed description of Justworks’ payroll service:

Pricing: Prices range from $39 to $49 per person per month depending on how many people you have

Easy to use: It’s the easiest, because you don’t have to do much other than point your employees at Justworks to sign up.

Tax Services: We handle all W2 and 1099 files and employer payroll tax filings

Year-End Fees – Issues all year-end W2s, 1099s online, included with the price

Accounting Integrations: QuickBooks, Xero and other API options

Justworks is known for its excellent customer service. Support is available via email, phone, Slack and chat 24/7. You can also find helpful articles and other content to help your employees with any problems they might be having with the service.


ADP is our most trusted payroll service provider. ADP can service any size business, so they are able to manage small businesses as well as large companies with hundreds of employees. ADP Run is our top choice for payroll services for businesses with more than 100 employees.

Here is a detailed breakdown of ADP Payroll Service:

Pricing: Unique pricing for all businesses.

Easy to Use: It is moderately simple to use, but can be challenging for small businesses that are not familiar with payroll software.

Tax Services: We handle all W2 and 1099 files as well as employer tax filings

Year-End Fees – All year-end filings included in the price regardless of which package you choose

Accounting Integrations: QuickBooks and Xero are just a few of the many accounting software options available.

Although ADP isn’t well-known for their customer service, they have a lot of positive reviews online. They offer 24/7 customer service. Their service is generally available, but their quality is subpar compared to other options.


OnPay, a solid payroll provider, offers integrations with many accounting software options as well as most time tracking software. OnPay’s API makes integration easy even though they do not currently offer direct integration. OnPay is the best choice if you are looking for integration options. OnPay makes it easy to process payroll and can be done on your mobile device. OnPay offers a flat pricing structure which is affordable and simple to understand.

OnPay’s payroll service is described in greater detail here:

Pricing: $36 + $4 per employee per month

It’s very easy to use

Tax Services: We handle all W2 and 1099 files, as well as annual employer tax filings

Year-End fees: All filings are included within the flat fee pricing

Accounting Integrations: QuickBooks and Xero are the most popular accounting software.

OnPay’s customer service has received high marks. OnPay offers both phone and email customer support. They are available Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. Eastern to 8:00 p.m. Eastern. This is a great option if customer service is important to you.


If you are looking for something new than what we have already discussed, SurePayroll might be a good choice. This is a great option if you are in a niche market and struggle to find a partner. They are great for all types of businesses, from small shops to large corporations. We voted it the best payroll service for those who need to pay their workers at home.

Here is a detailed description of SurePayroll’s payroll services:

Pricing: Prices from $19.99 to $49.99 + 4 to 10 dollars per month for independent contractors or employees

It’s easy to use. Although it isn’t the most intuitive option, it can be used by almost any business.

Tax Services: Can be used to handle W2, 1099 and employer filings. However, it is not included in their Full Service plan

Year-End fees: The Full-Service plan also includes federal tax filings. Additional fees may be charged for state filings

Accounting Integrations: Zoho Books and Xero.

SurePayroll offers both a Full-Service and a No Tax Filing plan. Both include a range of payroll features. Their customer service has a reputation that is not very good. However, they do provide six days of support. Their hours are Monday through Friday, 7:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. Central Time and Saturday, 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.


What type of solutions do payroll services provide?

Payroll services refers to the software and/or outsourced companies that process payroll for businesses. A payroll service will allow you to process basic payroll but also provide many additional features. You can pay your employees by direct deposit, integrates or built-in ways to record time, tax calculation and processing, as well as a way for employees to receive year-end documents such W2s and 1099 forms.

Small businesses can be happy with an all-in one software solution. It is cost-effective and can handle most of your payroll processing, even if you don’t have an in-house team of experts. This software makes payroll easier without costing too much. Outsourced services such as a personal employer organisation (PEO) can also be used. However, unless you have many employees, these services may prove costly or difficult to use.

When you’re looking for the best payroll service for your company, there are many things you should look out for. Leigh-Ann Mosley from Inova Payroll says that the most important considerations in evaluating payroll service providers include user-friendly software, reliability and transparency of pricing. When choosing a payroll provider, a user must also consider the long-term. Can the service expand easily if I have 10 or 50 employees. Is there an increase in the annual fee?

How do payroll services benefit small businesses?

Businesses use a payroll service or payroll software to automatically calculate and process their payroll. You will typically set up an automated connection to any system that you use to collect time from your employees or manually enter the time each week into your payroll software.

Your software will use the information you have provided about each employee to calculate how much tax you should withhold and how much you need to pay them. Your payroll service will initiate a transfer to your bank account from employees who have direct deposit.

Your payroll service can run your 1099 and W2 forms for you at the end of the year. You can then either print these forms or give your employees secure access. This will save you hours trying to create these forms and get them to your employees before the deadline. You can also use software you have used to pay employees throughout the year so that the numbers match the money they have deposited into their bank accounts.

How much do payroll services cost on average?

Payroll services usually cost between $20 and $100 per month. There is an additional $4-$10 per employee or independent contractor. While some services may have a per pay or per check fee, you can usually rely on the above costs if your plan is to push direct deposit for employees. These typically include weekly pay periods.

Are Payroll Service Worth It?

These payroll services can be worth it if you have one employee. You can do it yourself if you are familiar with employee laws, taxes and accounting. However, the risk of paying incorrectly or missing deadlines could cost you more than a payroll service or software.

While other software may offer payroll services as an option to programs you already own, we recommend that you get your own service provider. These add-ons may not have all the features that make top payroll services great. They can also be more expensive than those on this list.

How we chose the best payroll services for small businesses

Nearly two dozen of the top payroll services were evaluated based on their pricing and features. All payroll services must offer the ability to track time, calculate payroll taxes and direct deposit employee’s wages. We also looked at ease-of-use, additional features and customer service.