QuickBooks is one of the most comprehensive accounting software packages on the market, and thousands of busy business owners use it every day. The software is popular for ease of use, a simple UX, security features and rich accounting features from banking integration to employee management. However, getting up to speed on QuickBooks can be challenging if you’re just getting started using it to organize your finances. In fact, even if you’re a pro at QuickBooks, you may be missing critical tips and tricks that can save you hours each month balancing the books and attending to routine matters. Let’s take a look at 25 QuickBooks tips that can change your life and have your finances streamlined in no time.
Here’s a tip for business owners just getting started with QuickBooks: use ProAdvisor. ProAdvisor is part of the QuickBooks Intuit Package and connects you with a local accountant (depending on where you live) who can help get you up and running on the software. They can also advise you on issues like tax requirements, offsetting of expenses and business structure.
Invest in Understanding the Basics
Like all software, QuickBooks has a learning curve. However, if you use the Getting Started Tutorials that it offers, you’ll be more comfortable with how this accounting software works, such as management of bills, inputting costs and more. The tutorials are well-constructed and very practical, so invest a couple of hours after you get set up familiarizing yourself with the basic features.
Choose a Highly Secure Password
When it comes to protecting your financial data, the key is having a strong password. This will save you plenty of headaches later. Often, your QuickBooks integrates with online banking; a hacked system can open your financial vault in a risky way. To change your password, simply visit the Your Account tab and go to Change Password.
Enter Correct Company Information
What your firm looks like – its business structure, reporting forms, calendars for reporting as well as its Tax ID number – is critical. Avoid problems down the line by ensuring that all your data is entered correctly into the system via the “Company Tab.” Inputting the correct information and double-checking what’s in the system will help you get the best recommendations and results from the software.
Input Accurate Customer Details
Learn the fundamentals of setting up a customer in the system. All you need to do is head to the Customers Tab at the top center of your screen and enter all the customer details. Input each customer as a new customer and customize their payment methods, whether its cash, check or credit card. Setting up your core customers in one sitting and being disciplined about adding new customers as needed makes it easier to handle tasks such as invoicing and reconciliation.
Inputting Employee Details
If you’ll be using this software to pay your employees, the software can help you manage payroll deductions, benefits and tax payments. To take advantage of the feature, visit the Employees Tab which will lead you to the Employees Center. From there, each employee can be quickly set up and it’s possible to view reporting.
Reconciling on QuickBooks
One of the integral tips with QuickBooks that can change your life is constant reconciliation. When you reconcile your accounts regularly, you always have a high-level picture of what’s happening in your business. It’s simple: When you receive a statement or a payment remittance, ensure it reconciles with your QuickBooks. This encompasses all statements, including those for credit cards, loans and bank accounts.
Backing Up QuickBooks
Secure your data by backing up your QuickBooks. Set up an automatic schedule. Backing up your QuickBooks is as integral as running your business. You can’t have your entire QuickBooks on one system without backing it up because if it crashes, your information is lost. Use QuickBooks Online and your data is automatically backed up on the Cloud. Otherwise, integrate QuickBooks with your backup solution for extra security.
Print Checks Directly from QuickBooks
Printing checks can be expensive and time-consuming. If you’re looking to make your monthly reconciliations easier, you might want to start printing your own checks on QuickBooks. Just go to the Banking Tab and your first option will be Write Checks. You can then Print. No more outsourcing or paying check fees to your bank.
Paying Bills Via QuickBooks
It’s possible to streamline your business bill pay online through QuickBooks. This can be done through the Online Bill Payment option. Not only will you eliminate unnecessary steps, your life will be easier when it comes to reconciling your Accounts Payable.
Customize Your QuickBooks’ Layout
The newer versions of QuickBooks have a different user interface that’s more customizable than previous versions. However, if you’re comfortable using an older version and want to recreate that layout or you simply want to make an adjustment, all you need to do is go to Edit>Preferences>Desktop View.
Customize Your Icon Bar
Here’s the good thing about QuickBooks: You can customize what appears on your Icon Bar. This makes it easier to navigate since you only have the links you require most. Head to View>Customize Icon Bar and keep what you use most frequently.
Utilize Memorized Transactions
One of the best ways to make life simpler is to use QuickBooks to keep making regular transactions automatically. To enable that feature, click on Lists>Memorized Transaction List>Memorized Transaction>New Group and set up the transactions you want memorized. You can then use these to pay bills or send off monthly invoices which follow the same pattern.
Use Online Banking
With QuickBooks, online banking becomes a reality, which simplifies integrating your financial life. When you use the QuickBooks Online Banking icon on your Icon Bar, you’ll be taken through a tutorial for online banking and can start using it right away. However, it’s important to consider security; are there multiple users that access the software who you don’t want accessing your account?
Setting Up 1099 Vendors
Do you use contractors or freelance help for your business? If so, QuickBooks offers a feature for setting up 1099 Vendors. This means that you’ll be able to sort your payments plus sales taxes to the independent contractors of your business. It helps eliminate the stress associated with generating 1099s at year-end.
Turning Off Spellcheck
Spellcheck can be a weird feature in QuickBooks, especially when you’re dealing with company names. If you’re getting irritated with Spellcheck, there’s a way to turn it off. All you have to do is go to Edit>Preferences>Speller and uncheck the box for Always Check Spelling.
Restricting User Access
If your QuickBooks is being used by everyone from the top managers to admins handling invoicing, it can be difficult to control security for the delicate features such as payments and online banking. To circumvent this, you can opt to set up different users, giving access only to the features they need. Restrict user access so that each account has a custom set of features based on their tasks.
Online Payments via QuickBooks
Online payments via QuickBooks allows you to accept payments directly from customers while minimizing fees. All you need to do is set up your bank details, which are then used by customers to pay directly into your bank via QuickBooks. You’re charged only about 50 cents per transaction, which is much lower than many of the alternative platforms.
Find the History of a Transaction
Are you wasting a ton of time trying to figure out related invoices and credit memos and payments which have been offset against specific invoices? To gather more information, all you need to do is open the transaction in question and go to Reports>Transaction History and you’ll find what you’re looking for.
Linking Your Email to QuickBooks
If you’re selling a service online or carrying out transactions that don’t need physical invoicing, the best way to keep track of transactions is to link your email account to your QuickBooks and send your invoices directly to your customer. You can also opt to email reports to people when required. Email programs that can be linked include Outlook, Gmail, Yahoo and select others.
Viewing Double Entries
Like all accounting systems and software, QuickBooks also works on the principle of Double Entry. To check out the double entry of a particular transaction, all you need to do is open the transaction then go to Reports>Transaction Journal. This will open the Transaction Journal so you can double-check if the double entry is properly posted.
Merging Similar Accounts
Sometimes, you might find that your QuickBooks file is bogged down with many different accounts. This happens when accounts are created by different employees for different tasks or when multiple customer accounts have been erroneously created. To make your final accounts easier, merging is the best option. This can be done by choosing one account name, then going to another account for merging. Right-click and then paste and the name of the account you want all to be merged to. When you click Save, QuickBooks will ask if you want to merge the accounts. Click on Yes.
Chat with Staff
QuickBooks offers staff with different accounts a chance to chat through the QuickBooks window, which enables your team to sort out issues or discuss entries into the system. To chat, open up Company>Chat With A Coworker and start a new chat.
Offset Invoices Against Credit Notes
One of the major points which can make QuickBooks a hassle to use is that invoices disappear from the record if they’re offset to zero against credit notes. To avoid this, distribute credit notes against different invoices so just one invoice doesn’t disappear.
Printing Batch Invoices
If you have to print many invoices at a time, the best thing would be to opt for Batch Printing. Here, all you need to do is create your invoices, click on the arrow next to Print and click on Print Batch. This will give you an option to choose invoice numbers for printing, which makes it easier for you.
QuickBooks is a tool that can make financial management for your business dramatically easier. Yet, learning all the ins and outs takes time. Hopefully, these quick tips can help you get started, advance your knowledge and save time on critical tasks. What’s your favorite tip for getting the most out of your accounting software package? Let us know in the comments below or join the conversation on our social media channels.