10 Best Payroll Services For Small Business 2021

Business owners and managers have never had such numerous payroll options available and affordable as they are now. Competition among payroll providers is keeping the standards of service high and keeping the prices within reason.

Default payroll providers like ADP are getting much competition these days, in part due to the popularity of direct deposits and the ease of good payroll software.

We have analyzed the many different options out there and have ten payroll companies that offer the best online payroll services with features and solutions business owners and managers need today.

We bring you our picks for the best online payroll services for small to mid-size businesses.

Our top 10 best payroll services for 2021

  1. Deluxe Payroll Editor’s Choice

  2. Sage Payroll Editor’s Choice!

  3. Intuit Quicken Payroll Editor’s Choice!

  4. Paychex 

  5. Patriot Software 

  6. Gusto 

  7. ADP

  8. Square Payroll

  9. SurePayroll

  10. OnPay

#1 Deluxe Payroll

Deluxe Online Payroll

Deluxe Corp new logo

  • Full-Service Payroll Solutions & Finance
  • HR & Compliance, Background Checks & Employee Screening
  • Experts In Payroll For Restaurants, Contractors, Healthcare, and Retail
  • Direct Deposits, Online Payroll Reports With MyPayCenter
  • 1 – 1000+ Employees

deluxe HR Compliance and Solutions

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#2 Sage Payroll

Sage Payroll Page

Sage logo

  • 39 Years experience & 6,000,000+ customers worldwide.
  • Services small to large size businesses.
  • Pay employees, contractors, salaried and hourly workers.
  • Offers health and benefits.
  • Variety of pricing options
  • Accounting software solutions


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#3 Quickbooks Payroll

Intuit Payroll logo


  • Self-Service $17/mo +$4/employee per month
  • Full Service $40/mo + $4/employee per month
  • Same day Direct Deposit
  • Free W-2s filed and sent for you
  • Assisted payroll setup
  • Calculate employee paychecks
  • Calculate and file year-end forms

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#4 Paychex Payroll


  • All-In-One Payroll & HR
  • Time & Attendance, Benefits
  • Human Resources, Hiring & Outboarding
  • Solutions For 1-1000+ Employees

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#5 Patriot Software

Patriot Software logo

  • Direct deposit and check printing
  • Fully integrated employee portal
  • Tracking time and attendance for easier payroll processing
  • Easy To Use Software
  • 100% Online, Affordable Pricing

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#6 Gusto

Gusto Payroll logo


  • Full-Service Payroll Providing Employees With Medical, Dental, and Vision Benefits
  • Certified HR Experts
  • Time Tracking Tools

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#7 ADP

adp payroll logo


  • Payroll, Time & Attendance
  • Benefits, HR Services, Outsourcing options
  • 1-1000+ Employees

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#8 Square

Square Payroll website front page 2021

square payroll logo

  • Pay employees and contractors.
  • Pay salaried and hourly employees.
  • Offer health and other benefits.
  • Employee self-service capabilities that allow employees to access paystubs and W-2s.

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#9 SurePayroll

SurePayroll logo 2021

  • Unlimited payroll: Run additional payrolls at no extra charge.
  • Flexible options: Including one-day and same-day expedited payroll, giving you peace of mind if you’re in a bind.
  • Payroll on cruise control: Do you run the same payroll each pay period? Use Auto Payroll for hands-off service.

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#10 OnPay

OnPay logo


  • Pay employees and contractors in minutes
  • Automate your payroll taxes and filings
  • Benefits and HR in 50 states
  • Sync with accounting and time-tracking software
  • Trained pros to help with set up, questions, and our error-free guarantee

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Our 5 Favorites For 2021 – Expanded Info

Online Payroll laptop

What are the best online payroll services for 2021?

Advances in payroll software have been tremendous recently, and for 2021 we are excited to recommend a select number of companies that we think rise to the top of the payroll sector. Our favorite for payroll in both the U.S. & Canadian markets is Deluxe Payroll Service.

After Deluxe Payroll, we like Sage Payroll, Intuit Payroll, Paychex Payroll, and Patriot Software.

#1  Deluxe Payroll

Deluxe Corp new logo

Visit Deluxe

Our favorite for payroll in both the U.S. & Canadian markets is Deluxe Payroll Service. Since Deluxe’s purchase of Payce Payroll in 2016, Deluxe offers diverse solutions for any size business.

Many folks may not have realized it, but most people in America have been using Deluxe products their whole adult lives. If anyone has written a check in the past few years, it was probably written on checks provided by Deluxe. Deluxe often offers checks that most banks provide for their customers.

Currently servicing over 4.5 million regular customers, Deluxe knows small business, and Deluxe knows how to provide excellent service to both companies and direct to consumers. With this background and years of experience in Deluxe’s payroll department, we continue to recommend them for payroll.

Deluxe Payroll Prices

Deluxe Corp new logo

Deluxe Payroll Prices for 2021


That’s why they are ranked #1 Best on our list of the top 5 online payroll services for 2021. Check them out and check out the other four great options on our top 5 list. Visit each website and examine the options before deciding the best fit for your company… Read More

#2 Sage Payroll

10 Best Payroll Services For Small Business 2021 1

Visit Sage Payroll

Sage Payroll Page

Founded in 1981 and now with over 6,000,000 customers worldwide, Sage is known as a premier payroll and accounting software business. For 2021, Sage provides a complete human resource management solution to both small and medium-sized businesses.

Sage Payroll is a premium cloud-based business software, which offers payroll business services to different kinds of enterprises. Sage Payroll Services provides several key features for enterprises such as HR data handling and management, tax filing, and accounting integration. Sage Payroll offers three pricing plans, which have customized features that are well-suited for any enterprise’s needs.
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#3  Intuit Payroll

Intuit Payroll logo

Visit Intuit Quickbooks Payroll

Intuit is featured in our top ten best payroll services for 2021 because of their reasonable prices, ease of use, and integration with Quickbooks. Adding Quickbooks as an option is not required, but for those small businesses already using Quickbooks and are thinking about outsourcing payroll from in-house to Intuit, we believe this would make a good fit for most companies.

Intuit has an excellent reputation for its online business services, easy interfaces, dependable features, and payroll. Intuit’s online payroll service is reliable and more than able to get your employees paid in a manner you would expect. The downside, they have not kept up with their competition regarding the design or for filing payroll taxes.

Get Intuit Payroll Only


Payroll + Quickbooks Together = All In One Place – Nice!

Although Intuit Enhanced Payroll is an outstanding service, it’s very simplistic in design and does not automatically pay taxes at their basic level, as their competitors do for the same price. You would have to upgrade to another level for this service Read More

Get Intuit Payroll Only
Payroll + Quickbooks Together =  All In One Place – Nice!

Although Intuit Enhanced Payroll is a very good service, it’s very simplistic in design and does not automatically pay taxes at their basic level, as their competitors do for the same price. You would have to upgrade to another level for this service… Read More

#4  PAYCHEX  Payroll



Welcome to our Paychex payroll review. Although a little more expensive than some others, it’s an excellent choice for small businesses who want an “effortless” payroll system with every feature needed for a smooth payroll process. Paychex’s intuitive technology and 45 years of payroll experience both combine to offer businesses everything they need for payroll. Easy to use features and strong company support are good reasons to choose Paychex for your payroll.

Paychex Payroll Interface


An online portal for both administrators and employees.

Is accessible on mobile devices.

Offers third-party integration, including Sage, QuickBooks, and many more.

Payroll Features:

Paychex touts their tax compliance, dedicated U.S. based support, and 45 years of experience in HR and payroll processing as their top strengths.

Their payroll services include online payroll accessibility using a cloud-based system. You and your employees can access information from anywhere you have an internet connection.

• Paychex offers industry standards, for your administrators, including:

• Benefits & the accrual of personal or payroll time off.

• Deduction & garnishment configurations.

• You will have a dedicated payroll specialist for your account.

• Third-party integration for your ledger.

• Tracking time and attendance

• Multiple payment options.

Your Payment Options:

When taking care of your employees’ payments, there are three options to suit your employees’ needs:

• Direct Deposits

• Pay by Check

• Payment Cards

Their Mobile Solutions:

Their mobile platform is straightforward to use and offers a wide range of features. Mobile devices run smoothly and efficiently on Paychex due to their cloud-based accessibility for administrators and employees. Their one-touch feature allows for employees and administrators to view check stubs, time off, and other employee data.

Their main dashboard is mobile-friendly for all your devices with menus that are highly visible on your chosen device. The number of menus can be a little confusing at first for those who aren’t familiar with payroll operation software. This could be a hindrance, at least when starting. There are tabs and menus for you and your administrators to learn everything about payroll operations. The upside, you can customize their screens to find the information you need Read More

#5 Patriot Software

Patriot software

Visit Patriot Software

Patriot Software is known as one of the best online payroll solutions available today. Their payment software, options, and features operate smoothly and very user-friendly. They provide a full service for payroll, including processing, payments, and an employee portal. You can track time and attendance for easier payroll processing and HR software which is a great benefit for small business owners.

User-Friendly Setup

Their payroll solution is very impressive and very simple to set up. You can enter all your employees’ information into the system in just a few minutes. If you choose to run your payroll manually, all you have to do is enter the data when it’s time to pay your employees.

On the other hand, if you use their full-service option, it’s even easier. All you have to do is input your employee’s hours for the given period and hit approve! It’s that simple!

Their interface is clean and straightforward; you will not get bogged down in menus or visuals. The upside of their simple feature setup, you will not get lost or confused in navigation. It’s effortless to use, and a great perk for the busy small business owner Read More

Check out our list of the best places to order business checks online.