What Is Check Printing Software?
Check printing software comes in the form of programs that let you create, set up, and customize checks. You can also fill out, print, and send physical or digital copies by mail, fax, and email. It eliminates the need for a traditional checkbook or pre-printed bank checks.
Many software versions also include other accounting and bookkeeping mechanisms, such as tools for accepting payments and invoicing.
One of the essential aspects of the best check printing software is its capability to print Magnetic Ink Character Recognition (MICR) numbers. That way, it allows you to print on blank check stock paper instead of purchasing the bank’s documents. Furthermore, it makes check fraud and counterfeiting much more difficult.
If you typically use physical checks, you can use blank stock paper, which you can purchase at office supply stores, and regular printers to create them. The alternative of creating paperless checks and sending them digitally to your suppliers is also available.
Today, payroll departments of every size use such programs. They can be useful for anybody who doesn’t have physical checks at hand, from individuals to small businesses and accountants. They’re 100% legal to use, as long as you comply with requirements set by financial institutions.
Benefits of Check Printing Software
There are many advantages to printing your check stock instead of using pre-printed checks. Most notably, here’s the return you’d get for such investing in the best check printing software:
- Security: Not keeping pre-printed checks lying around reduces the chances of you losing or somebody stealing them. Moreover, computerized data sitting behind a password wall is, by definition, much safer than physical documents.
- Convenience: When you print checks using specialized software, you never run out of them and have to wait for new ones to arrive from the bank. All you need is a printer.
- Flexibility: If you change banks, your address, or any other information vital to your checks, you don’t need to order a new batch of pre-printed documents, either. Change the information you put in your software and you’re good to go.
- Time-saving: When you import data onto your system, creating checks is just several clicks away, letting you bypass the time-consuming aspect of this process.
- Tax compliance: Check printing software simplifies taxation. Not only does it let you create and print checks but it can generate a full report of your bills, eliminating the need to keep track of each one individually.
- Recognizability: Finally, there’s branding to consider. If you run a business, it’s easier to get your name noticed if you add a logo to your check.
Must-Have Features for Check Printing Software
Reviewing all our top picks for the best check printing software and the massive differences between individual solutions can become overwhelming. How do you tell which features you need and which ones you can avoid for money-saving purposes?
There are several must-haves to help you estimate your needs better.
- Customizability: Being able to personalize your checks makes a lot of difference, functionally and aesthetically.
- Scope of use: You might want to print your checks on blank paper and use pre-printed bank checks for various purposes. A MICR printing capability is a must for adhering to banking regulations if you use blank forms.
- Integrations: Importing data from other finances and accounting tools can speed up the check creation process a great deal. To make your workflow even smoother, the program you choose will ideally be compatible with other software you already use.
- Compatibility: Most of the options we described work as web-based and cloud options, but you have to install some on your desktop and handheld devices. Plus, not every program works with every printer.
- Extras: This criterion depends on your business and its specifics. Do you already have accounting software and need a single-use tool, or are you looking for a full-featured suite? Do you need to track checks and change their backgrounds?
The Cost of Check Printing Software
The price range for the best check printing software is massive, and it could cost you anywhere between nothing and hundreds of dollars. So the answer to this question largely depends on your needs and the program you select.
As you could see from our top picks, some options are 100% free of charge, but they often come with limited feature sets or outdated interfaces. On the other hand, numerous integrations, enterprise-level services, and many personalization options amp up the price. Remember that when you consider the relationship between your needs and your budget.
When it comes to our top picks, you could try a free program before purchasing anything if this is your first time considering whether you even need check printing software. The ones that come with fixed subscription fees can cost up to $795 a year, but the programs in question tend to do much more than print checks.
Many companies go for the pricing-on-request model, tailoring the costs to suit your business’s needs. While you might dislike the uncertainty that comes with such programs, they also have free demo periods, allowing you to gauge whether the software is worth the price.