Updated: Sep 29
It’s more enjoyable than paying your bills. Here are three ways to process incoming money from customers.
One of the biggest challenges faced by small businesses is maintaining a positive cash flow. It can, at times, be a constant battle. How do you keep your income running ahead of your expenses? Luckily, QuickBooks Online can help streamline your accounts receivable processes, thanks to specialized forms and a mobile app that allow you to record and deposit incoming payments. Do you ever receive payments instantly for some products and/or services? Are you ever out of the office and have to document a sale for both you and the buyer? Do you send invoices for products and/or services and need to make sure that payments get reported accurately when they come in? QuickBooks Online supports all of these situations. It also provides a service that can automate your payments and help you get paid faster.
Applying Payments to Invoices
If you send invoices to customers for products and/or services, you can receive their payments quicker and easier by using QuickBooks Payments, a merchant account that allows you to accept credit card and bank payments electronically.
Using QuickBooks Online’s mobile app, you can check the payment status of an invoice.
Once you set up QuickBooks Payments, your invoices will allow bank cards and electronic checks as integrated payment options. Your invoices will go out with a button that customers can click to provide bank card or check information. You’ll be able to see when invoices are viewed, paid, and deposited, as shown in the image above. You can also get notifications of invoice activity.
Of course, you can also check the payment status of the invoices you’ve sent in the browser-based version of QuickBooks Online on your desktop or laptop. Open your list of invoices on the site and click on one to highlight it. A panel will slide out from the right side of the screen displaying the invoice’s timeline.
You can also record payments manually. Look at the end of the row for an invoice that hasn’t been paid. You’ll see a Receive Payment link. Click it to open the Receive Payment screen and complete the fields that aren’t already filled in, then save the screen. There’s also a Receive Payment link on the invoice screen itself.
You can record payments for invoices manually from the Invoices screen. There’s no cost for setting up an account in QuickBooks Payments, but there are per-transaction fees, as you're likely to find with all other merchant service providers. Luckily, working with a certified QuickBooks Solution Provider like Account Ability Consulting means you can benefit from lower rates than those currently offered on quickbooks.com. As of March 2023, customers who sign up for QuickBooks Payments through us first can receive the following processing rates for customers on a pay-as-you-go plan:
1% for ACH bank payments, with a maximum of $10 per transaction
Swipe: 2.2% + 25¢
eInvoice: 2.9% + 25¢
Keyed: 3.1% + 25¢
For some businesses, a secondary option with even lower processing rates might make sense. This option includes a monthly fee of $16 when you work with Account Ability Consulting (usually $20 when working directly with QuickBooks) and gets you the following rates:
1% for ACH bank payments, with a maximum of $10 per transaction
Swipe: 1.5% + 25¢
eInvoice: 2.75% + 25¢
Keyed: 2.9% + 25¢
Payments that come in before 3 p.m. PT should be in your account the next business day. While our discounted rates above are subject to change, we encourage you to reach out to us first before signing up for QuickBooks Payments so you can retain more of your revenue by paying less in processing fees!
Payments On the Road
To accept payments remotely, get a Bluetooth card reader from Intuit that works with the QuickBooks app and your mobile phone. Customers can tap or insert their cards or make digital wallet payments. You can also key numbers in, but, as we said earlier, the per transaction fee is higher. You’ll also need to download the free GoPayment app to process transactions. The app also allows you to add labels, prices, and images so you can find the item you’re selling quickly. Multiple security measures are used to help keep this method of mobile data transmission safe.
Receiving Payment Instantly
There may be times when you provide a product or service for someone and they pay you on the spot. QuickBooks Online allows you to create and send sales receipts for just those occasions. Click +New in the upper left corner, and then click Sales receipt under Customers. QuickBooks Online then opens a form that should look familiar to you. It looks and works like an invoice or estimate. Select the Customer in the upper left corner and complete the rest of the fields as you would with any sales form. If you click Save and send when you’re done to email a copy to the customer, you can see a preview first.
About Receiving Checks
When we created a sales receipt just now and indicated we’d received a check, the Deposit to field defaulted to Checking, because QuickBooks Online assumed we’d be depositing this check on its own. When you have multiple checks that you’re going to combine into one deposit, you should have the payment deposited to the Undeposited Funds account. Note: this may have recently been re-labled as Payments to Deposit. Use the +New button in the upper left corner and click Bank Deposit. Select the individual checks that went together in one bank deposit. This is a common area of confusion for our clients. In the Bank Feed, we find customers are prompted to add deposits as new income. Instead, the best practice here is to record the deposit first in the Make Deposit window and then match it in the Bank Feed. A good habit is this: before you go to the bank, create a deposit record and print a deposit slip (QuickBooks provides deposit forms you can print to directly from your computer). This way, you can avoid having any funds stuck in Undeposited Funds that have actually already been deposited. You'll still want to look at this account occasionally to make sure you don’t have transactions just sitting there, although the measures we've laid out above should prevent that from happening.
Money from payments you’ve received sometimes* go into the Undeposited Funds account. Questions on any of this? Contact us to set up a consultation. The mechanics of receiving payments are not that difficult, but you need to make very sure you’re recording all payments properly and getting the money into your bank accounts.