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Categorize and match online bank transactions in QuickBooks Online

SOLVEDby QuickBooksQuickBooks Online2406Updated 1 month ago

Learn how to review downloaded bank and credit card transactions and put them in the correct accounts.

After you connect your bank and credit card accounts QuickBooks automatically downloads the latest transactions. It looks for and tries to match them with transactions you've already entered into QuickBooks. If it can't find a match, it creates a new transaction record for you. All you have to do is approve the match or newly created transaction.

To watch more how-to videos, visit our video section.

Note: QuickBooks can automatically match transactions made with QuickBooks Payments, saving you hassle and time. Learn more about automatic matching for QuickBooks Payments.

Step 1: Download the latest bank and credit card transactions

For most banks, QuickBooks downloads the latest available transactions every night around 10 PM PT. Some may take a little longer. You can also manually update your accounts anytime to get the latest available transactions:

  1. Go to Bookkeeping then Transactions then select Bank transactions (Take me there), or go to Banking (Take me there).
  2. Select Update.

This updates all of your bank and credit card accounts.

Tip: If you see a message about additional authentication, follow the on-screen steps to continue the update. Not all banks require this, but some do for added peace of mind.

Here's what to do if you have trouble downloading your transactions.

Step 2: Review and categorize downloaded transactions

  1. Go to Bookkeeping then Transactions then select Bank transactions (Take me there), or go to Banking (Take me there).
  2. Select the tile for the account you want to review.
  3. Select the For review tab to start your review.

QuickBooks sends downloaded transactions to the For review tab. Review them one-by-one.

For each, you have the option to match, add, or view multiple matches. Follow the steps in the section for each option:

Match means QuickBooks matched the downloaded transaction with one you already entered. This links them together so you don't get duplicates.

All you have to do is make sure the match is correct:

  1. Find a downloaded transaction with the Match option in the Action column.
  2. Note the DateDescriptionPayee, and amount spent or received.
  3. Select the downloaded transaction to expand the view.
  4. Review the Matching records found in QuickBooks. This is the possible matching transaction you already entered in QuickBooks.
  5. Select the link next to each match to get more details.
  6. Make sure this is the correct match. In particular, review the Deposit toPayment method, and Bank account fields on forms for the existing transaction in QuickBooks.
  7. If this is the correct match, close the open transaction.
  8. Select Match.

QuickBooks now knows the downloaded transaction is the same one you already entered. It connects the two so there are no duplicates. Your work is done.

Find out why there are transactions that don’t have a match

There are cases where some of the transactions can’t find their match from existing records. Here are the possible reasons why.

  • The payees don’t match
  • The amounts don't match
  • The dates don't match or is not close
  • The transaction is older than 6 months.
    Tip: You can still find a match when you select the Find match section
  • The bank account on the payment is not the same as the bank where the match is located
  • The payment has been reconciled
  • The transaction is already matched to something else
  • There’s a multi-currency issue with the exchange rates

QuickBooks will automatically identify outgoing and incoming bank transfers between two of your linked bank accounts by looking for matches in transfer amounts and dates. 

When a transfer is imported into QuickBooks Online, you’ll be presented with a suggested transaction pairing that you can confirm or unpair. If the pairing is confirmed, it will mark that transaction as reviewed for both feeds. 

  1. Go to Bookkeeping, select Transactions, then select Bank transactions (Take me there). 
  2. When prompted, confirm your paired bank transfers:
    • To confirm the pairing: in the Action column, select Record transfer
    • To remove the pairing: Select the transactions to open the details, and select Unpair. Then, select Categorize or Find match

To view the settled transactions:

  1. Go to Bookkeeping, select Transactions, then select Bank transactions (Take me there).
  2. Select Categorized and look for the transaction in the list. 
  3. In the Added or Matched column, select Transfer to [...] to view the transaction details. 

To edit a settled transaction:

  1. Go to Bookkeeping, select Transactions, then select Bank transactions (Take me there).
  2. Select Categorized and look for the transaction in the list. 
  3. In the Action column, select Undo
  4. The transaction will return to the For review tab and can be reviewed like normal. 

Add means QuickBooks didn’t find an existing matching transaction. Instead, it started a brand new transaction for you using the info from your bank or credit card.

All you have to do is make sure there isn't a match and approve the work:

  1. Find a downloaded transaction with the Add option in the Action column.
  2. Select the transaction to expand the view.
  3. Review the recommended Category. This is the account QuickBooks wants to categorize the transaction into. For example, for a gas expense, QuickBooks may suggest categorizing it under Travel Expenses. You can always change the category and put it in a different account.
  4. Change the vendor or customer as needed. Tip: If you think you already entered this transaction into QuickBooks, select the Find match option. Review the list of possible matches and select one if you find it.
  5. Review and add any other information that may be mandatory or missing.
  6. When everything looks good, select Add.

QuickBooks uses this info to create and add a new transaction to your accounts.

Note: QuickBooks sometimes categorizes transactions into the Uncategorized Income or Uncategorized Expense accounts. These are temporary accounts. If you can, always categorize transactions directly into income or expense accounts.

View means QuickBooks found more than one potential match.

All you have to do is pick the right one:

  1. Find a downloaded transaction with the View option in the Action column.
  2. Select View.
  3. Review the Matching records found in QuickBooks. These are the possible matching transactions you already entered in QuickBooks.
  4. Select the link next to each match to get more details.
  5. Make sure one of these is a match. In particular, review the Deposit toPayment method, or Bank account fields on forms for the existing transactions in QuickBooks. Note: The fields you see may differ depending upon the transaction you are matching.
  6. Compare the potential matches.
  7. When you find the correct match, close the open transactions.
  8. Select the correct match and then select Match.

View images for check transactions

QuickBooks has partnered with a number of banks to automatically include front and back check images for any check transactions awaiting review. This can make it easier to review and match transactions.

If you've already connected QuickBooks to a participating bank, the check images load automatically, and no further action is required.

To view the check images:

  1. In the For Review tab, select a downloaded transaction that shows a number in the Attachment Attachments paper clip icon column.
  2. In the transaction details, select one of the Check Image attachments to view the image.
  3. In the image panel that appears, you can view the front and back of the check, and expand the image to full screen.
  4. Review the transaction as normal. If you match or add the transaction, you can later find the images in your Attachments list, under Settings ⚙.

Notes:

  • If your connected bank transactions don’t have check images automatically attached, your bank is not supported. However, it may be supported at a later date as we work to partner with more financial institutions.
  • Check images are not supported with multi-currency turned on.

Step 3: Review matched or added transactions

After you match or add downloaded transactions, they're recorded into QuickBooks. You can review your work and make sure everything is correct in the Categorized or Reviewed tab.

It's a good idea to quickly check this after your review:

  1. Go to Bookkeeping then Transactions then select Bank transactions (Take me there), or go to Banking (Take me there).
  2. Select the tile for the account you want to review.
  3. Go to the Categorized or Reviewed tab.
  4. Select the link in the Added or Matched column to review the transaction.

Tip: If you need to change or move a transaction to a different account, follow these steps to undo or unmatch it. Make all of your changes before your monthly reconciliations.

You can split transactions, such as a large business travel expense, between multiple accounts for better tracking.

  1. Go to the For review tab.
  2. Select the downloaded transaction to expand the view.
  3. If the option in the Action column is Match, change the Find match to Categorize.
  4. Select Split next to the Add button.

This opens the Split transaction window.

  1. From Category dropdown, select the categories (the accounts) you want to split the transaction into.
  2. Enter an Amount for each split.
  3. Select a Customer for each split.
  4. When you're done, select Apply and accept.

Exclude personal or duplicate transactions to keep your accounts accurate:

  1. Go to the For review tab.
  2. Select the checkbox for each transaction you want to exclude.
  3. Select Exclude.

Excluded transactions move to the Excluded tab. They won’t be added to QuickBooks or downloaded again.

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