small business payrollExpenses are of the utmost importance to small businesses, especially today. Because of this, the cost of small business payroll is a huge factor for small business owners who are considering hiring a payroll service.

Many things can impact your payroll costs, including:

  • How often your employees are paid
  • How many employees you have on the payroll
  • Whether you want direct deposit
  • Whether you have employees that live in another state
  • Whether you need additional tax filing services

Depending on these factors, small businesses can typically pay between $20 and $100 per month, often with an additional small fee ($1.50 to $5) for additional employees on each payroll.

While cost is rightfully top of mind when searching for a payroll company, quality of service is equally important. Make sure you consider exactly what you need out of a provider before simply choosing the cheapest one you can find.

Here are three things you should consider when comparing the costs of small business payroll services:

1. Accessibility. While payroll is an essential function for any business, it’s likely not where your specific expertise lies. You want running payroll to be easy and convenient, and you want it to be accessible from anywhere online.

2. Convenience. The payroll service you decide to use should help you organize and prepare everything, from reports to payroll stubs to important calendar reminders, in one spot. And you should be able to pay your employees in a matter of minutes—not hours.

3. Customer support. While some payroll services will give you the technology you need to run your payroll, not all of them will be there to help if you have specific questions.

A payroll service should have the expertise to guide you through any payroll-specific and tax issues you may have, as inevitably along the way your situation will become complicated and you may have questions. A good payroll company will support not just the technology you’re using but also the compliance and regulatory issues that could impact your business financially.

Small business owners are getting savvier with technology, and their payroll company should be no different. As a small business owner, it’s important that you consider more than just price when selecting a payroll service for your company.

Michael Alter is president and CEO of SurePayroll, a wholly owned subsidiary of Paychex. SurePayroll provides payroll services for small businesses.