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Level 1

Setup my QBO properly for ecommerce biz without POs and Invoices

I need to burn down my entire QBO account and start over. I clearly did not set it up properly, and would like some direction on how to do things correctly. I have no real accounting experience or knowledge


I have what I think is a VERY simple ecommerce business reselling sports apparel. I was using another online bookkeeping product for all of 2021 and it was very easy and not even remotely as complicated as QBO seems to be. However, I discovered that the bank import had been failing off and of for large portions of the year. I got no support or was able to fix it, so I abandoned the product. I came over to QBO a few months ago, and set it up by answering whatever questions were presented, linking my bank account, and then doing a full import of all 2021 transactions (Jan1 - Dec31). It took a good week to slog thru and reconcile(?) and categorize all of them. But when I was done, QBO shows what looks like an accurate number for the year for Income, but the P&L says I'm super rich because none of my purchasing of the inventory I resell shows in Expenses. It also reports $0 on the sales widget for the year in Business Overview. So I'm obviously doing something very wrong. Every purchase transaction came out of the bank account and I categorized as Expense - Inventory Asset. Every sale is a direct deposit to the bank account and I categorized as Sales of Product Income. So that's the story of what I did wrong. I'd be happy to be educated on why that's wrong, but really, I've made a bigger mess of it trying to "fix it" and am prepared to start over.


Here's how I operate in the real world, and welcome direction and advice how to fit that into QBO.

1) I buy items from international factories. I do not issue POs or even receive invoices (or perhaps more accurately, there's an invoice or maybe packing slip, but it's in Chinese). I purchase cryptocurrency directly from my business checking and send it to the vendor to buy inventory.

2) When product arrives, I receive it by entering into a 3rd party inventory tracking system. I do NOT want to track inventory in QBO

3) My sales are all thru an online marketplace. That marketplace collects and pays all sales tax for me. I receive batched proceeds from sales by direct deposit to my business checking every few days. Sometimes that batch deposit may be for just a few items, sometimes its a lot. I do not want to produce bills or invoice customers from QBO, as it's all handled by the marketplace. For bookkeeping purposes, I thought I'd essentially just have one "customer" that is that marketplace.

4) I have no AR or AP. I buy with my business debit card and receive payments for sales without billing anyone. Because of that, I think I even tried to setup QBO as Cash accounting instead of accrual, and I can't recall now if I tried to switch out during the last few weeks of very poorly executed fix attempts!


Obviously, there are other expenses (supplies, shipping materials, etc) but that all seems to be accurate and I don't think I'm doing that wrong in QBO. But I'm obviously not setup correctly for my sales and inventory. Every tutorial I read or youtube help video I watch (if they even talk about products, seems they only ever show/explain Services which is very annoying) shows creating POs and Invoices etc which seems like a whole lot of invented work?


What is the correct setup and day-to-day operation for what I'm describing? If I have to invent an Invoice for every deposit from the marketplace, so be it, but I'm hoping that's not the case?


If I haven't provided enough or accurate info to help, please let me know

3 Comments 3
Fiat Lux - ASIA
Level 15

Setup my QBO properly for ecommerce biz without POs and Invoices

You should open a blank QBO account instead to restart.


then utilize the trial version of a backup restore app during your setup


Which 3rd party inventory management app do you have?

In which marketplace do you sell your product?

Level 1

Setup my QBO properly for ecommerce biz without POs and Invoices

QuickBooks Online has over 625,000 customers. Xero is it’s closest rival in the industry with a respectable 280,000+ customers. While Xero is my preferred accounting software platform, there’s no doubt that QuickBooks Online is still the vastly more popular option for managing a your business online.




Level 1

Setup my QBO properly for ecommerce biz without POs and Invoices

Yes, I'm preparing to start over in QBO. But I'm asking how to set it up properly to avoid the problems I detailed.


I use Meta Business as my sales channel. They provide a template where all my individual inventory items reside. I do not want to track them in QBO. I presumed I should use the Non-Inventory

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