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Make Your Invoices Your Invoices

QuickBooks Online contains customization tools for sales forms that help you make yours absolutely unique.

Maybe you think that you don’t pay any attention to how an invoice looks when you receive it. But you probably do. Is it printed on a stock form with no branding from the company that sent it? Or worse, is it handwritten?

Every form that you send to your customers should be easily identifiable as yours. Your logo, if you have one – and you should have one designed if you don’t – should appear there. Do your mailing labels and packaging, for example, follow a particular color scheme? Do you use a special font? Identify yourself with a company slogan?

QuickBooks Online isn’t a graphic design application, so if you already have a consistent branding scheme, you probably won’t be able to match it precisely. Still, you should use the available tools to make your invoices look not only professional and polished but tied to your identity.

Making Your Needs Known

To get started, click the small wheel icon in the upper right of the screen and select Company Settings. This takes you to a page that is still labeled as Preferences, as it was in earlier versions. Click Sales Form Entry to move to this portion of the page:

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You can do some of your invoice customizations on the Preferences page. If you’re not absolutely confident about your understanding of QuickBooks terminology and conventions, a QuickBooks course may be in order.

Some of the options listed under Sales Form Entry like Terms — relate to how QuickBooks actually works. We’re focusing here on how it looks. So on this page, you’ll work with custom fields. You can add up to three custom fields on your invoices. You’d enter the Screen Name (label) that should appear and specify where it should be positioned by entering 1, 2 or 3 in the Order field.

Depending on your business needs, you may also want to have fields appear for other special purposes, in which case you’d check the box next to each to activate it. They include Deposits, Discounts, Service Dates and Shipping.

Building a Look

More customization options are available from the invoice screen itself. Click the + sign at the top of the screen and select Invoice. At the bottom of the screen, click Customize. This window appears:

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There are multiple options in this window for changing the physical appearance of your invoices.

Click on each tab in the upper left to make any desired changes to your invoices:

  • Style. Upload your logo, choose a template, change the colors and fonts.
  • Header. Check or uncheck boxes to indicate which fields should appear here and whether you want to use custom transaction numbers to make your numeric system more descriptive.
  • Columns. Tell QuickBooks Online which columns should appear in the main part of the invoice by again checking and unchecking boxes.
  • Footer. What customer message do you want to appear? This, of course, can be changed as needed. Do you want anything else to appear in your footer?

Your modifications will also be applied to estimates and sales receipts. A good QuickBooks training class can help you understand when to use each type of sales form.

Spend some time thinking about your customization options before you make them. Customers will start to associate you with your brand if your forms and other identifying materials stay consistent.

Hector Garcia

Accountant and Enrolled Agent

Certified Advanced QuickBooks ProAdvisor

Member of Intuit Trainer/Writer Network & Accountant-VIP

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