Do you have a business that keeps you on the go? Do you need to visit clients’ offices frequently and feel the need for generating bills in real-time? If yes, your business’s accounting activities need QuickBooks Online (QBO) – a cloud accounting software which continues to leave behind its traditional counterpart called QuickBooks Desktop or just QuickBooks.
However, it is not an adequate introduction to QBO and you must know what makes it truly awesome:
- Access accounting data and perform accounting activities using just an internet connection and any of the devices from computers, laptops, tablets, and mobiles. It also promises the accessibility on a round-the-clock basis for all 365 days of a year.
- Always use an up-to-date version of QBO as you don’t have to upgrade to the latest versions and releases as is the case with QB Desktop.
- Automatically backup your accounting data stored on secure QBO servers and do away with different possibilities of security threats.
- Enjoy instant technical support available free of cost and round the clock and save the cost of hiring in-house technical experts.
QBO’s advantages don’t stop here. Have a look at the features that it offers and those you miss while using QuickBooks Desktop:
- Automatic scheduling and execution of transactions
- Audit log which allows real-time reviewing and tracking of changes
- Multiple location labels
- Automatic bank transaction downloading
- Automatic updating of latest rules from your bank
- Setting-up of multiple budgets for each financial year
- Some great third-party applications to take accounting to the next level
In short, the decision to migrate to Quick Books Online is absolutely rewarding and should be implemented without giving any second thought. Now, your focus should be on how to do it with ease so that your accounting activities don’t suffer a long disruption. Here’s a guide with useful tips and assistance in this direction.
How to Get Started?
Before you begin with the actual process of migration, you have to make some preparations and evaluate certain things that would ensure a smooth migration from QB Desktop to QBO. Here are the most important of them:
- Update the Accounting Data in QB Desktop: In other words, you must do the data additions and cleaning so that it looks good after getting converted to QBO. For example. Make sure that you update the names and other information of your customers if it has changed over time.
- Backup the Data: Creating a backup of your files and data in QB Desktop before these are converted to QBO is useful in many ways. For instance, you will have the original file saved in case the migration process fails or the data in QBO appears as inaccurate or incomplete. Also, it will let you tally the data to ensure that there have been no data compromises. To create a backup, follow the route File > Backup > Company > Create a local backup after opening the targeted Desktop file.
- Select the Right Conversion time: Though you can perform migration to QBO any time, it is better to do it either at the end of the month or at the end of the year. This will ensure that no tasks remain pending and your QBO files would be good to get instantly started with.
- Update QuickBooks Desktop Version: The migration is possible only if you use QuickBooks version 2011 or higher. If you are still using an older version, first update it before starting the process.
- Know the Limitations: The process of migrating from QB Desktop to QBO won’t work if:
- The number of targets in the Desktop file exceeds the value of 350,000. To check the total number of targets, simply open the file in QB Desktop and press F2.
- You turn on the multi-currency mode.
- Assemblies have been built in inventory in Desktop file.
- Units of measure are used in inventory.
Create a QuickBooks Online Account
The next stage of migration from QBD to QBO is creating a QuickBooks Online account (in other words, subscribing to QBO). For this, visit the official website of Intuit Inc. and choose the version of QBO you wish to convert to. You will be required to provide important details like name, email id and mobile number and choose a password.
It is important to remember that once you subscribe to QBO, you will have a maximum of 60 days to migrate your QuickBooks Desktop files to QBO. If you fail to do so, the subscription would expire and you will have to subscribe again using a new email id. An expert service provider can help you convert the files within 180 days of the date of subscription.
Data that Does and Doesn’t Convert
Another thing to know about migration to QBO is that not all data and file types are converted from Desktop to Online. Here’s a quick overview of how different data and files would behave during conversion:
- Chart of Accounts: QBO has an additional column called ‘Detail Type’ in its Chart of Account template. During conversion, a generic detail type might be assigned to different entries that can be edited afterward. Please note that the process doesn’t convert bank account numbers and notes.
- Audit Trail: QB Desktop‘s Audit Trail is not converted to QBO. However, QBO has its own way of maintaining the audit trail of each transaction. It is called Auto Log which is automatically updated.
- Credit Card Charges: These are converted to Expenses.
- Estimates: The active estimates are converted and marked as ‘Closed’. The inactive ones are converted too but are marked as ‘Rejected’.
- Finance Charges: QBD’s existing finance charges are converted to QBO.
- Inventory: It is important to note that Inventory in QBO is tracked using FIFO method only and it is available only in QBO Plus.
- Journal Entries: These are converted but with the only exception of their billable status.
- Suppliers (or Vendors): The information including contact, alternate contact, supplier type, credit limit, etc. is not converted.
The list above is not complete and you must refer to the Intuit community to get more information in this regard.
Understanding the Process
The process to migrate to Quick Books Online from QuickBooks Desktop can be completed in the following steps:
- Log in to your QuickBooks Desktop account
- Follow Company > Export Company File to QuickBooks Online
- Log in to your QBO account
- Decide whether you wish to import inventory or not. Remember that if you decide to import it, it would be tracked using FIFO method only. Select Yes or No.
- Select the QuickBooks Online Company File you want to replace.
- A notification stating the start of conversion process would appear.
- After the migration completes, you will see another notification confirming the same.
- Finally, an email is sent to your email id. You will be asked to complete your setup in QBO. Review the data and start working.
Some Important Things to Know
Import Summary Report: It is a report attached to the email you would receive after the conversion is done. It is a useful piece of information containing company details regarding both QB Desktop and QBO files. It can be used to recognize and address any issue that might arise during the migration process.
Using QBD and QBO Together: That’s not possible. As the former runs on a local computer and the latter on a cloud, there is no way to connect the two software tools and use them simultaneously.
First Thing Post-migration: The very first thing to do after the migration gets completed is to run the files named Profit and Loss Statement and Balance Sheet in both QuickBooks Desktop and QuickBooks Online. Now, compare the data in both to ensure that the data was migrated successfully without any loss or modification.
Using Expert Services: The migration from QB Desktop to QBO can be complex, depending on the type and size of data and also the level of knowledge and expertise you have. You can hire a migration expert for the task and get the task done without any hassles. Make sure you ask about turnaround time, costs and other important things in advance.
With MMC Convert, you can migrate to QuickBooks Online in the simplest possible manner. We offer a simple process in which you just need to upload your files to our website for conversion. Our team of experts uses the latest and the most popular tools and processes to facilitate accounting data conversion without any loss or alteration. You can ask for the conversion of any number of files or the entire QuickBooks Desktop data to QBO.
Our services are available for conversion from various versions of QB Desktop Pro, Premier, and Enterprise to QB Online. We assure that you start working on the new QBO files within the shortest possible duration. Our data conversion services include QuickBooks to Xero, Xero to QBO, Sage 50 to Xero, MYOB to Xero and many more.