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What data doesn't convert from QuickBooks Desktop to QuickBooks Online?

What data doesn't come over when you convert from QuickBooks Desktop to QuickBooks Online?

If you're migrating from QuickBooks Desktop, this comprehensive list of features can help you understand if your data is simply not supported, or why it has changed.

Note: While you’re trying QuickBooks Online, we highly recommend keeping your data file in QuickBooks Desktop. We also suggest that you maintain your transactions on both sets of books until you determine if QuickBooks Online is right for your business. Also, pay close attention if you have recurring transactions.

Want a condensed version of this list? 

For a condensed version of this list, check out What's not imported when you move from QuickBooks Desktop to QuickBooks Online?

Need help deciding if you should convert from QuickBooks Desktop?

You can also check this guide (Before You Start - The QuickBooks Guide to Converting QuickBooks Desktop to QuickBooks Online) to help you decide if you should convert from QuickBooks Desktop.

 

How to confirm if a feature is not converted

  1. Open your browser's Find function using Ctrl+F (Windows) or Cmd+F (Mac), or from your browser's menu.
  2. Enter keywords related to your missing data type to see if they're included in our list of import limitations (Examples of keywords include: reconcile, online bill payment, and estimate).
  3. If they are included, read the explanation to see if it answers your question.
  4. If they aren't included, please use the in-product feedback to let us know.

Things to know about size limitations when converting from QuickBooks Desktop to QuickBooks Online

  • While QuickBooks Desktop Enterprise and QuickBooks Online don't have list limits, a size limit exists when you convert from Desktop to Online. To convert to QuickBooks Online, your Desktop company file must have less than 350,000 targets.
  • While QuickBooks Desktop Enterprise and QuickBooks Online don't have list limits, a size limit exists when you convert from Desktop to Online. To convert to QuickBooks Online, your Desktop company file must have less than 500,000 targets.
  • To determine how many targets are in your file, press F2 or Ctrl+1 on your keyboard, then check Total Targets under File Information.
  • If you exceed the size limit, you'll need to condense your file to successfully import it to QuickBooks Online. 

List of features not specifically converted

  • Chart of Accounts
  • Audit Trail
  • Bill Payment
  • Budget
  • Closing Date
  • Credit Card Charges
  • Custom Fields on Lists
  • Customers and Jobs
  • Discounts
  • Documents
  • Estimates
  • Group Items
  • Inactive Elements on Lists
  • Inventory
  • Invoices
  • Journal Entries
  • Memorized Reports
  • Multicurrency
  • Online Banking
  • Online Bill Payment
  • Other Names
  • Password
  • Payroll:
  • Payroll Items
  • Pending Sales
  • Price Levels
  • Print Mailing Labels
  • Progress Invoices
  • Purchase Orders
  • QuickBooks Payments
  • Receive Items
  • Reconcile
  • Recurring Transactions
  • Reimbursable Expenses
  • Report Customization
  • Sales Rep
  • Sales Tax and Value-Added Tax (VAT)
  • Ship  Via
  • Shortcut List
  • Tax Support
  • Terms
  • Type: customer, vendor, job
  • To Do list
  • Users and Permissions
  • Vendors
  • Write Letters

Chart of Accounts

  • The bank account number (if any) and notes (if any) are not converted.
  • QuickBooks Online has an additional level of account typing called the "Detail Type."
  • For accounts where the detail type is obvious (for example: Undeposited Funds), the conversion process assigns that detail type.
  • For accounts where it isn't clear what the detail type should be (the majority of accounts are like this), the conversion process assigns a generic detail type within the type, such as Other Miscellaneous Income which can be edited later.

Audit Trail

  • The audit trail in QuickBooks Desktop is not converted to QuickBooks Online.
  • QuickBooks Online has its own automatic Audit Log with a detailed audit trail of every transaction that is added or changed, and the log in/out of users accessing the file.

Bills and Bill Payments

Bills: Item receipts are converted to Bills. The Bill Received checkbox doesn't convert.

Bill payments: The discount applied to a bill in QuickBooks Desktop is converted as a Vendor Credit. The address on the bill payment check is replaced by Vendor address in Vendor list.

Closing date

Your QuickBooks Desktop closing date is converted but the password is NOT.

Credit card charges

  • Credit card charges in QuickBooks Desktop are converted into an Expense in QuickBooks Online.
  • Bill payments made by credit card are converted to bill payments.

Custom fields on lists

  • QuickBooks Online currently doesn't support custom fields on customers, vendors, employees, or items.
  • In QuickBooks Online Essentials and Plus, you can add up to 3 custom fields on sales forms & transactions themselves.
  • Your custom fields from QuickBooks Desktop will not be converted.
  • "Sales Rep" converts to a custom field on sales forms.

 

Customer and Jobs

  • All of your customers in QuickBooks Desktop are converted to QuickBooks Online, including sub-customers.
  • Your jobs are converted to "sub-customers."
Note: Not all of your customer detail and job information is converted.

 

Converted

  • Customer
  • Company Name
  • Mr./Ms./?
  • First Name
  • M.I.
  • Last Name
  • Phone
  • FAX
  • Alt Ph.
  • E-Mail
  • Terms
  • Bill to Address (Note: Up to 4000 characters)
  • Ship To Address (Note:The Ship To Address converts, but not perfectly. The entire address will be placed in the main address field, leaving City, State/Province, Zip Code/ZIP code, and Country blank.)
  • Tax code/item
  • Preferred Payment Method

Not Converted

  • Inactive status (this status remains as long as there are no unbilled charges imported)
  • Contact
  • Alt. Contact
  • Customer Type
  • Rep
  • Price Level
  • Custom Fields
  • Account
  • Credit Limit
  • Job Status
  • Start Date
  • Projected End
  • End Date
  • Job Description
  • Job Type
  • Credit Card Information

Discount

Although a Terms can specify the discount to be given in the event of early payment of Invoices, QuickBooks Online doesn't automatically compute discounts when payment is received.

  • Discounts already given for early payments: converted as credit memos, applied to the customer's outstanding balance.
  • Discounts taken from vendors for early payment of bills: converted as Vendor credits, applied to the vendor's outstanding balance.

Documents

  • All documents listed under the Company Menu will not transfer over.
  • Attachments on transactions are not converted.

Estimates

  • All your estimates in QuickBooks Desktop are converted to QuickBooks Online.
  • All active estimates are marked as "Closed," and inactive estimates are marked as "Rejected."
  • Once converted, estimates used for progress invoicing will have no link to the invoices that were created in Desktop.

Finance Charges

  • Your existing finance charge invoices are converted to invoices in QuickBooks Online with no data loss.
  • QuickBooks Online currently doesn't have an automatic way to assess finance charges for late customer payments. (Note: You can run a report to see which customers are overdue and manually add finance charges that will appear on the customers' next invoices.)

 

Group Items

  • If you have group items in your QuickBooks Data file, they are converted to the Products & Services list.
  • For sales transactions, group items will convert as Bundles.
  • For purchase transactions, all components of the group items are converted:
    • Each item of the group appears on a detail line when you view the transactions.
    • Zero amount lines are at the start and end of where the group item was so you can see which items were part of the group.
    • The top line shows the group name and the bottom line shows the group description.
    • Group total will show on the last line of invoice in Description field.

Inactive elements on lists

  • If you have accounts, customers, or vendors marked as inactive in your QuickBooks Data file that have an open balance, they are converted to QuickBooks Online Plus as regular, "active" elements.
  • If there is no balance tied to the names, they will convert as inactive (deleted).

Invoices

Because there are some features in QuickBooks Desktop that aren't available in QuickBooks Online, the following invoice data is "translated" when it is converted:

  • PO No, = Custom Field 1
  • Sales Rep initials = Custom Field
  • Subtotals do not compute but are included in the Description field for that line on the invoice.
  • Progress Invoices (invoices based on estimates) and their extra fields are not converted, including the following:
  • Est Qty,
  • Est Rate
  • Est Amt
  • Prior Qty
  • Prior Avg Qty
  • Prior Avg Rate
  • Rate
  • Prior Amt
  • Prior %
  • Curr %
  • Total %

These things on invoices aren't converted:

Customer fields:

  • Other
  • Customer Custom Fields

Columns:

  • Other 1
  • Other 2
  • Item custom fields

Options and Others:

  • Sales Form Template
  • Logo. (Note: You can add your logo after conversion.)
  • Long text disclaimer
  • Tax name

Inventory

Note: Inventory is only available in QuickBooks Online Plus, and only using First-in-First-out (FIFO) method in accrual.
  • Only QuickBooks Desktop for Windows can export inventory to QuickBooks Online.
  • When you select the option to import inventory, it will ask you to choose a date, which we will use to recalculate your inventory based on FIFO calculations.
  • We will bring over your current item quantities, item accounts and details, and you will not need to do any work to your inventory after importing.

Journal Entries

  • The only piece of information that isn't converted is a journal entry's billable status; you can't make a journal entry billable in QuickBooks Online.
  • In rare instances, transactions (such as checks or invoices) in your QuickBooks Desktop data file are converted into general journal transactions. This translation occurs only if QuickBooks Online cannot recreate the original transaction. (Note: An example would be a check that uses an income account instead of a bank account as its source account.)

Layout customization (sales form templates)

Memorized reports

QuickBooks Online allows you to memorize reports but none of the reports you memorized in QuickBooks Desktop are converted. ( Note: You'll need to recreate the reports in QuickBooks Online and memorize them again.)

Multicurrency

Note: Multicurrency is only available in QuickBooks Online Plus.

 

  • Multicurrency will import to QuickBooks Online. (Note: There are certain ways to create transactions in QuickBooks Desktop that are not supported by QuickBooks Online.)
  • Transactions with 3 different currency types involved will not convert to QuickBooks Online at this time.

Online banking

  • Bank and credit card accounts set up for Bank Feeds in QuickBooks Desktop will lose their connection once converted to QuickBooks Online.
  • Bank rules also don't convert.
Note: Already migrated to QuickBooks Online? Connect your bank or credit card account now to continue downloading transactions.

 

Online bill payment

  • Checks marked "To be Sent" are converted, but their online bill payment status is not converted.
  • QuickBooks Online now supports online bill payment allowing you to pay bills electronically through QuickBooks Online.
  • Online Bill Pay is powered by our partners at Bill.com. (Note: For more details, visit Bill Pay for QuickBooks Online, Vendor ACH)
  • To sign up for this feature, please Contact Us.
  • QuickBooks Online currently doesn't support online bill payment, however you can use an app to continue paying bills online.
  • We have a few that we recommend, so head on over to our apps page.
  • From there you can use the search field and type "Bill Pay" (there's dozens of apps to choose from).
  • For UK users: QuickBooks Online currently doesn't support online bill payment, however you can use an app to continue paying bills online.
  • We have a few that we recommend, so head on over to our apps page.
  • From there you can use the search field and type "Bill Pay" (there's dozens of apps to choose from).

Other names

  • QuickBooks Online currently doesn't have an Other Names list.
  • All of the "other" names in your QuickBooks Desktop data file are converted as vendors in QuickBooks Online.

Password

  • QuickBooks Online requires each user who has access to a company to provide a password when logging in.
  • User names and passwords from Quickbooks Desktop don't convert.

 

Payroll: How does it convert from Desktop?

You'll need to fill out an interview to complete setup after importing (company contributions, tax info, etc.) before you'll be able to create paychecks. Payroll information is limited during the conversion process ( Paychecks will come over as regular checks)

For US users:

  • In most cases we will automatically import the current year's worth of paycheck information as lump sums, but if it does not come over, you will need to enter past payroll totals (YTD Payroll information) for each employee.
  • Since Desktop has more features for payroll some information may be dropped:
    • Pay types that aren't supported by Online payroll will not import.
    • Invalid SSNs.
    • Invalid EINs.
    • Employee addresses are about the only invalid information that we'll bring over, but may require fixing after the fact. (Note: Addresses for states outside our supported states (such as, PR, AS, VI) will be dropped.)

For users in Canada and the UK:

  • You will need to enter past payroll totals (year-to-date payroll information) for each employee.
  • Since Desktop has more features for payroll some information may be dropped:
    • Pay types will not import.
    • Invalid Social Security numbers (SINs) & Social Security numbers (NINs).
    • Employee addresses outside the supported scope of QuickBooks Online will be dropped.

     

Payroll Items

  • Transactions and payroll accounts are converted in order to balance your books, but details behind the transactions (such as payroll item breakdown and employee year-to-date numbers) do not convert.
  • Liability refunds, adjustment transactions, and opening balance transactions that affect accounts convert to journal entries.

    For US users:

    Employee pay schedules convert as well as your items but you might have to manually map a few so we know how to calculate them if they are supported.

Note: Check out the custom pay item mapping section in What to do after completing an import to QuickBooks Online from QuickBooks Desktop Mac/Windows for more information.

 

Pending sales

  • QuickBooks Online currently doesn't have a way to mark a sale as "Pending".
  • Pending transactions from your QuickBooks Desktop data file are NOT converted to QuickBooks Online.
  • QuickBooks Online Essentials and Plus have the Delayed Charge form, which is a non-posting sales transaction.

Price Levels

  • QuickBooks Online currently doesn't have a way for you to automatically adjust prices of items (which are called "products and services" in QuickBooks Desktop).
  • If you have price levels set in your QuickBooks Desktop data file, they are NOT converted to QuickBooks Online.

Printing mailing labels

  • QuickBooks Online currently doesn't print mailing labels.
  • You can create a report of customer, vendor, or employee addresses, copy the report to Excel, and use the data to print mailing labels from Excel.

Progress invoices

For users in the US, UK, Canada, and Australia: 

Progress Invoicing is currently available to all QuickBooks Online users in the US, UK, Canada, and Australia.

Note: If this feature is currently unavailable to you. See Progress invoicing - Can I create an invoice for a partial amount? for recommended workarounds and other options.

 

Purchase orders

  • Purchase orders are only available in QuickBooks Online Plus.
  • Imported Purchase Orders that are closed will not be linked to their corresponding Bill.

QuickBooks Payments

  • For US users: To transfer your existing QuickBooks Merchant Service account to QuickBooks Online, check out Unlink or link Merchant account.
  • For users in Canada: While you can't transfer your existing QuickBooks Merchant Service account to QuickBooks Online, you can create a new one.
  • For users in the UK: QuickBooks Merchant Services aren't currently supported in QuickBooks Online. You can either e-invoice your customers with PayPal or GoCardless, or find a suitable app.

 

Receive items

All the ways you can receive items in QuickBooks Desktop (Receive Item & Enter Bill, Receive Item, and Enter Bill for Received Items) are converted as bills. See bills and bill payments for details.

Reconcile

  • Your past reconciliation reports are not converted to QuickBooks Online.
  • All reconciled transactions in the register will have an “R” in the cleared column in register in QuickBooks Online.

 

Recurring transactions

  • QuickBooks Online Plus and Essentials accounts support recurring transactions. If you import into anything other than a Plus or Essentials account, you will not be able to see your recurring transactions. (Note: The data is still imported. When you upgrade to a Plus or Essentials account, you should see your recurring transactions.)
  • QuickBooks Online Simple Start/Simple Start does NOT support recurring transaction templates. Delete all recurring transactions and templates from within QuickBooks Desktop before importing into QuickBooks Online Simple Start/Simple Start to avoid errors after importing.

Reimbursable expenses

  • QuickBooks Online has "billable expenses," which are similar to reimbursable expenses in QuickBooks Desktop. (Note: With QuickBooks Online, you specify the markup percentage when creating the purchase instead of when creating an invoice.)
  • Reimbursable expenses and time that have not yet been billed in QuickBooks Desktop will be converted as billable expenses in QuickBooks Online.

Reminders

Reminders do not convert to QuickBooks Online.

Reports

  • QuickBooks Online doesn't have all the reports that QuickBooks Desktop has, and even some of the similar reports are slightly different.
  • Although your Accrual Basis reports will match in both products, your Cash Basis reports may not. (Note: This is because cash basis calculations are somewhat subjective, and there are several differences in how the two products calculate what is considered paid.)
  • An example is the use of negative lines on invoices. Suppose you have a service income line of $1000 and a discount of $ -100 and no payments:
    • In QuickBooks Online, your cash basis P&L report will show $100 of income and $ -100 of discount.
    • In QuickBooks Desktop, no portion of an unpaid invoice shows in any cash basis P&L report.
    • Similarly, as payments are received:
      • QuickBooks Desktop prorates the amount of the discount that shows in the P&L.
      • QuickBooks Online continues to show the entire amount.
    • Your accrual reports are unaffected by this change.

Report customizations

  • QuickBooks Online doesn't have all the report customization options that QuickBooks Desktop has.
  • QuickBooks Online allows extensive filtering and supports exporting a report to Excel for further filtering if necessary.
  • You can save your customization (like memorizing a QuickBooks Desktop report) and schedule the report to be auto sent from QuickBooks Online.

Sales rep (converts as a custom field)

  • Any Sales rep names or initials you recorded in transactions in your QuickBooks Desktop file is maintained in the transactions in QuickBooks Online as a custom field.
  • You can continue to assign sales rep information on sales transactions in QuickBooks Online and filter reports by sales rep as needed.
  • When assigning sales reps to sales transactions, you'll need to enter the name as opposed to selecting it from a predefined drop down list.

Sales tax and Value-Added Tax (VAT)

Sales tax and Value-Added Tax (VAT):

      • After the conversion, there will be at least two sales tax payable accounts on the Chart of Accounts:
        • One for each old Sales Tax Payable accounts from QuickBooks Desktop.
        • One for each Sales Tax Agency Payable accounts in the new QuickBooks Online (set up automatically for each jurisdiction during the conversion).

    For users in the US: 

    Moving forward, QuickBooks Online will only use the new Sales Tax Agency Payable account, and all sales tax will be managed from the Taxes left hand navigation tab.

For users in Canada and Australia:

Moving forward, QuickBooks Online will only use the new Sales Tax Agency Payable account, and all sales tax will be managed from the GST left hand navigation tab.

  • For users in the UK:

    • Moving forward, QuickBooks Online will only use the new Sales Tax Agency Payable account, and all sales tax will be managed from the VAT left hand navigation tab.
    • Sales tax payments will convert as regular checks.
    • Sales tax adjustments will convert as journal entries.

For users in the UK: VAT:

  • Regarding VAT classes currently set up for Sales and Purchase tax (within QuickBooks Desktop), new codes will need to be manually created once the data migration is completed.

 

Ship Via

Ship Via is converted, but when recording Ship Via information on transactions, you'll need to enter the shipping method manually as opposed to selecting from a predefined list.

Shortcut list

  • Your shortcut list and icon bar settings from QuickBooks Desktop are NOT converted to QuickBooks Online.
  • QuickBooks Online has its own keystroke shortcuts. In any window, hold "Ctrl+Alt+?" ("Ctrl+Option+?" on Mac) to see the shortcut menu.

Tax support

  • QuickBooks Online currently doesn't export information to TurboTax or other tax preparation programs.
  • When a QuickBooks Online file is accessed via QuickBooks for Accountants, there is a Book to Tax feature, which integrates with Intuit Tax Online.

For users in the UK and Canada:

  • QuickBooks Online doesn't support tax line mapping in the Chart of Accounts.
  • QuickBooks Online has an additional level of account types called Detail Types. (Note: They may help you make tax line assignments to accounts when tax support is available.)

 

Terms

  • QuickBooks Online has a terms feature that is very similar to the terms feature in QuickBooks Desktop . The terms automatically calculate the due date from the transaction date.
  • QuickBooks Online doesn't have an associated feature to assess finance charges associated with the terms you assign.
  • Discounts for early payments can be specified in terms, but the discount amount isn't automatically calculated. For example, if a customer pays early enough to qualify for a discount; you'll need to edit the invoice yourself to add the discount.
  • Terms are imported without change with the following enhancement: In QuickBooks Desktop, a job can't have its own terms. It inherits its terms from its parent customer. In QuickBooks Online, the equivalent to a job (a "sub-customer") can have terms, so you can edit the terms later to make them different from those of the parent customer.

Type: customer, vendor, job

  • QuickBooks Online currently does not have a way to categorize customers, vendors, or jobs with types the way you can with QuickBooks Desktop.
  • If you have types in your QuickBooks Desktop data file, the lists of types aren't converted to QuickBooks Online. (Note: When customers, vendors, and jobs are converted, their type is not converted.)

To Do List

Your QuickBooks Desktop To Do notes aren't converted to QuickBooks Online. (Note: Currently, there is no way to define a task or To Do in QuickBooks Online.)

Users and Permissions

  • Existing users don't automatically have access to QuickBooks Online, instead they will need to be re-invited from QuickBooks Online to gain access.
  • QuickBooks Online has access permissions that limit the user's ability to see and use different parts of the application but they don't allow you to control access at the level of transactions like QuickBooks Desktop could.

Vendors

All the vendors in your QuickBooks Desktop data file are converted to QuickBooks Online but not all of their detail/information converts.

Converted:

  • Vendor
  • Company Name
  • Mr./Ms.
  • First Name
  • M.I.
  • Last Name
  • Phone
  • FAX
  • E-Mail
  • Terms
  • Print on Check as
  • Address
  • Account
  • Tax ID
  • 1099 (US only)

Not converted:

  • Contact
  • Alt. Contact
  • Note
  • Inactive
  • Vendor Type
  • Credit Limit
  • Custom Fields
  • Alt. Contact
  • Alt Ph.

 

Write Letters

QuickBooks Online currently doesn't have an automated way to use your data to generate customized letters.

That's it. You now know what data doesn't convert from QuickBooks Desktop to QuickBooks Online.