Setting Up QuickBooks

QuickBooks is designed to help small businesses and corporations organize their finances. This program is created so that it can be accessed from a computer or mobile device from any location. Through QuickBooks, businesses can enjoy having a simplified way of tracking expenses, sales and taxes.

Benefits of Setting Up QuickBooks

One of the best things about using QuickBooks is the easy, intuitive design. Even new users can quickly figure out how to create reports, invoices and financial information. Data is automatically backed up, so users never have to worry about losing their important information. In addition, tools like the calculator automate accounting and perform the calculations for the user. This ensures fewer mistakes and faster accounting practices. Quotes, invoices and reports can be created in a matter of seconds. As an added benefit, companies can enjoy having all of their financial information, customer details and vendor data in one searchable location.

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Unfortunately, business owners have to deal with constant changes to the tax code. Even within the same year, the Internal Revenue Service may change the required tax withholdings. If this figure is miscalculated, the company can end up getting penalized. By setting up QuickBooks, small business owners can ensure that they are always calculating their withholdings correctly. Since this service is also free with QuickBooks, businesses can enjoy an inexpensive way to make sure that their payroll taxes are being sent in correctly.

Work With Just One Checking Account

When there are multiple checking accounts at a single business, it is far too easy to send a transaction from the wrong account. It is also important that the business owner does not accidentally post personal transactions to a company account. When personal and business accounts are mixed up, it becomes difficult to separate the financial statements. QuickBooks simplifies this process by ensuring that all transactions are posted to the right account. As a result, companies can take advantage of more accurate financial statements.

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Easy Remedies

No one is perfect, and QuickBooks is designed to handle these imperfections. Even businesses that make $15 million annually use QuickBooks because it is so simple to manage. If a number is posted to the program by mistake, a QuickBooks Pro Adviser can help to make the adjustment. These individuals are located throughout the country, so it is easy to find an adviser who can help.

Creating Invoices and Estimates

For the advanced QuickBooks user, invoices and estimates can be designed within the program. When an invoice is created, QuickBooks immediately posts the accounting activity to the company’s account. Due to this, it is important to understand how estimates and invoices are generated before creating them in QuickBooks. The invoices will be automatically posted, so users should make sure that they understand how QuickBooks works before creating an estimate or an invoice.

Dial the Vendor

Through QuickBooks, businesses can download information directly from their bank statements. Before trying to download credit card or bank statements, business owners should call the vendor to get a better understanding of the process. If there is a problem, companies should keep in mind that transactions do not have to be accepted until they have been reviewed for accuracy.

Setting Up QuickBooks

Setting up QuickBooks takes a few minutes to complete. The program is intuitive, so even new users can figure out how to set up and use the software. The following tips are designed to get users started with QuickBooks quickly and efficiently.

  • Register for QuickBooks The first step is to register for QuickBooks. After going to the website, company owners just have to input their name, email address, password and a user ID. Once this is done, the business can start using a 30-day free trial. During this time, the company can decide if using QuickBooks is the right solution for the business.

    After the initial trial, businesses can select from a variety of different subscription options. The QuickBooks Plus version costs $40 every month and includes every feature, support for 1099s and inventory tracking. With the basic Simple Start plan, users pay $13 a month to track banking transactions, invoices and estimates. The mid-range version is known as QuickBooks Essentials and starts at $27 per month. This option includes all of the features of the Simple Start plan as well as multi-user support and bill management options.

    During the 30-day trial, businesses can experiment with all of the different plans to find out which one works best for the company’s needs. Once the QuickBooks account is created, the user will be sent to their QuickBooks dashboard. To make sure that this works, business owners should be using a compatible browser like Firefox, Safari, Chrome or Internet Explorer.

  • Choosing Company Preferences: From the initial QuickBooks dashboard, users will find a To Do list that covers various ways that the account can be used and set up. These tutorials are extremely useful for learning about QuickBooks, but the business owners should wait a few minutes before trying them out. Initially, the company should focus on setting the company’s preferences before they dive into QuickBooks.

    To set up the company preferences, users should start by selecting the Company tab on the top menu bar. From this point, they should click on Preferences. In this screen, the user can enter their company contact information and other details. Businesses can customize their account to include time tracking, invoice automation, credit card payments, payroll and online payment options. If any of these details are entered incorrectly, users can always go back to change their company preferences later on.

    In the old QuickBooks, users had to set all of their preferences before they could use QuickBooks. The current version allows the user to move on and change the preferences later. At this point, credit card payment options, time tracking, invoice automation and payroll settings can be adjusted. If the user does not know what personalized settings they want, they can always wait and return to this screen later on.

  • Import Company Data: The next step in the process is to import company data. The QuickBooks Desktop program allows banking transaction, Excel charts, customer data in Excel and some email applications to be imported. To do this, users just have to click on the Company tab along the top menu bar. Afterward, select More and Import Data from the drop down menu.

    The options that appear will include all of the data that can be imported from different categories. A chart of accounts can be uploaded as an XLS file and reviewed for any errors before it is imported completely. Likewise, vendor lists and customer details can be uploaded as a CSV or Excel file.

    Some of the company information that can be imported through QuickBooks includes:

    – Chart of accounts from Excel
    – QuickBooks desktop company data
    – Services and products from Excel
    – Banking transaction details saved as QFX, QBO or OFX files
    – Vendor and customer data from Gmail, Excel or Outlook

    All of these files and more can be imported with minimal effort into QuickBooks. Company and customer data can be imported as multiple file options because QuickBooks is designed to smoothly navigate through most file types. If a “Type” error appears while importing a chart of accounts, it just means that QuickBooks did not recognize the chart.

    Sometimes, banking transactions can be a little harder to upload. QuickBooks may want to have the type of bank specified. Due to this, users may have to categorize their banking information as a trust, checking, cash on hand, money market or savings account. While this requirement may seem annoying at first, it does allow the business to better organize banking details.

  • Syncing Bank Accounts: The fourth step in setting up QuickBooks is to import banking transactions. To start this step, users should click on the Banking tab along the top of the menu bar. Afterward, select Download Transactions. Once this is done, a pop-up window will appear that asks the user to select the bank and the account that they want to sync. To sync a specific account, the user will need their online banking login and password.

    Once the account has been selected, QuickBooks will spend a few seconds or minutes downloading banking transactions. When this is complete, the company can assign specific accounts, vendors or customer names to different transactions. This extra step right now will ultimately make it easier to organize and categorize transactions.

    In general, most major banks will allow seamless, efficient integration with QuickBooks. If the business uses a small bank or a credit union, there may occasionally be outdated online banking software. When this happens, it can make syncing banking details much harder than it normally would be with QuickBooks.

  • Syncing Credit Cards on QuickBooks: After syncing bank details, it is time to sync credit card information. Syncing a credit card account with QuickBooks helps to save time by removing the need for manual entry and making sure that data is accurately tracked.

    To begin syncing credit card details, users should select the Banking tab on the top of the menu bar. From this point, click on More and then Registers in the drop down menu. After clicking on Registers, users will be asked to enter an account name. A pop-up window will then appear that asks what type of account needs to be set up. At this point, the user just has to choose the credit card option. A setup wizard will appear to guide the user through the rest of the syncing process.

  • Make Customized Invoices:The next step in the process is to create a customized invoice. QuickBooks plus allows users to create invoices with specific fonts, company logos, layouts, styles, fonts and colors. These features can be customized easily through the dashboard.

    Users should start by selecting the customers tab on the top of the menu bar. From here, they should select Create Invoices. In this screen, the user will be able to choose an invoice template from the drop-down list that works for their company. The template can be changed by choosing the Formatting tab and clicking on the Customize Date Layout button. In this window, users can change the way the invoice appears, customize the invoice or change the way it prints.

    Adding a company logo can be done by selecting the Customize Data Layout button. From here, users should select the Basic Customization button that is located at the bottom of the Additional Customization window. After selecting the Use Logo checkbox, a window will appear that allows the user to choose the file that they want to upload.

    The logo is going to be scaled inside of a square, so users should re-size and modify their logo in Adobe Photoshop before they submit it. Once the logo file is ready, the user should select Open to preview the way the logo will look. Afterward, they can save the logo and use it on invoices.

  • Import Contacts: Through QuickBooks, it is simple to import contacts from the business. To do this, users should go to the Company tab and select more. After clicking on Import Data in the drop down menu, users should select vendors or customers depending on the type of data that they want to import. Customer or vendor data can be imported as a CSV or Excel file. For this to work, the Excel file should have customer data separated from line to line. For example, the phone number, name, address and website of the customer should be included in separate vertical columns. As long as these details are separated, QuickBooks will figure out the rest.

    Once the file is imported, QuickBooks will use the file to fill in the details. While normally this is done effortlessly, there are occasionally upload problems. Users should scan through the uploaded file to make sure that it has transferred correctly. Once the data has been reviewed, the user should click Continue to complete the process.

Last Reminders

Learning how to use QuickBooks and importing data is designed to be easy. While the initial learning curve may be steep, the intuitive process makes it simple to begin using QuickBooks. As new users begin setting up their QuickBooks account, they should keep the following factors in mind.

Payroll Software and QuickBooks

Unless the business owner likes manually calculating payroll data, they can easily do it with QuickBooks. Most major payroll software programs allow users to easily sync payroll software with QuickBooks. This allows users to know immediately about tax code changes, and it ensures that QuickBooks is effectively integrated into the business.

Keep Business and Pleasure Separate

Using QuickBooks is an effective way to separate transactions, but users have to be careful. All transactions will be automatically uploaded into QuickBooks, so it is easy for personal transactions to unintentionally end up under the individual’s business account. Due to this, users will probably want to create a separate checking account or credit line for their personal expenses that is not included within QuickBooks.

Wait to Create Invoices and Estimates

For many companies, the estimates and invoicing options on QuickBooks are extremely useful and intuitive. If the user has never used QuickBooks before, they may want to wait to use these features until they have a better understanding of the software. QuickBooks automatically posts any accounting activity from estimates and invoices, which means that a mistake will immediately be calculated into the company’s accounts. Until the user is confident in their ability to use QuickBooks, they may want to stick to entering invoices and estimates manually.

Get Help When Needed

One of the best things about QuickBooks is the customer support options. If there is a problem, QuickBooks Pro Advisers are available. Rather than spend hours in frustration, users can call or contact an adviser for extra help. To be an adviser, the professional must be certified as a QuickBooks expert and take several exams. Due to this, they are exceptionally knowledgeable about how QuickBooks works and how to fix common problems.

Setting up a QuickBooks account can be done quickly and easily. While it may take a little while to get used to the software, the payroll, invoicing and syncing features more than make up for the early learning curve. With QuickBooks, businesses can make sure that all of their financial, customer and vendor details are carefully and accurately tracked.