We also introduced two basic list creation methods in the QuickBooks Encyclopedia: the “build-as-lists-you-work” method, where you create entries as you generate sales forms and the “build-lists-all-at-once” method, where build a complete list ahead of time.
Each method has advantages. Whether you prefer to set aside time to enter everything ahead of time or do work on the fly, you’ll want to spend time creating product and service, customer, and vendor items before you start sending Invoices en masse.
If you sell products (certain services are also taxable), you must collect sales tax in most states.
The basic set up in QuickBooks Online is two parts – (1) selecting your sales tax preferences in the Taxes Tab and (2) making your products for sale “taxable” from the Products and Services list. There’s a bit more to set up than what’s described in the tutorial, so we strongly encourage you to also check out “Setting up for success in QuickBooks Online – Sales Tax.”
For both the “Single Time Activity” and “Time Sheets," make sure you check the “Billable” option if you intend to add these costs to customer Invoices. Also note that when the instructor uses the word “Vendor,” this generally refers to Independent Contractors.
Note that timed activities are meant to be added to your customer's Invoices as billable line items – this is a separate process from your Payroll.
Estimates are "non-posting transactions," a term you will hear often in QuickBooks. This essentially means Estimates have no impact on your income accounts and the customer will not owe you anything until the Estimate is turned into an official Invoice.
Estimates look and feel nearly identical Invoices. You enter your products and services as line items exactly the same way you would for an Invoice. Once an Estimate is approved by your customer, it can be easily converted into an Invoice. You may want to utilize the message, memo, and attachment fields since your customers need as much information as possible to make a decision.
You can check the status of all open Estimates in the Sales Tab.
When your customer accepts the Invoice, you can update the status to "accepted" and click “Save and Send” to give the customer the final accepted copy. Don't forget to include the name of the recipient and date.
Once you update the Estimate, rather than creating a new Invoice from scratch, return to the Estimates menu to click Create Invoice so you continue to work from the same sales form through the entire sales cycle.