How To Track Time In QuickBooks Pro

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How To Track Time In QuickBooks Pro

There are a lot of great time tracking applications in the world, but one of the best things about QuickBooks Pro is that you can do all of your time tracking directly within the software. No more confusing Excel sheets, lost paystubs, or expensive third-party integrations!

We’ll teach you how to track time and create timesheets using your QuickBooks Pro software in a few easy-to-follow steps.

Before you keep reading, make sure all of your employees, customers, and projects are properly added into QuickBooks. Take a look at these posts to learn how…

…or jump straight into time tracking with these step by step instructions.

Table of Contents

Enter Time

To enter time into QuickBooks Pro, begin by going to Customers>Enter Time>Time/Enter Single Activity.

Step 1: Choose Date

Choose the date for the hours you wish to track using the drop-down calendar.

How To Track Time In QuickBooks Pro

Step 2: Select Employee

Select the proper employee for the hours worked.

How To Track Time In QuickBooks Pro

When you click on an employee, you’ll receive this popup message.

How To Track Time In QuickBooks Pro

Click “Yes” if you want the hours you enter to automatically be added to your employee’s payroll timesheet.

Step 3: Select Customer Or Job

Use the drop-down menu to select the customer or job attached to these hours.

How To Track Time In QuickBooks Pro

Step 4: Choose Service Item

Use the drop-down menu to select the service item performed for your customer or job during these hours. If you haven’t added any services yet, read our How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro post where we cover how to add service items.

How To Track Time In QuickBooks Pro

Step 5: Choose Payroll Item

Select a payroll item. If you haven’t created payroll items yet, refer to our How To Add An Employee In QuickBooks Pro post where we cover payroll items in detail.

The payroll selections available will depend on how your company is set up, but here are the payroll items we had to choose from as an example:

  • Contractor rate
  • Holiday overtime
  • Hourly overtime
  • Hourly rate
  • Starting hourly rate

How To Track Time In QuickBooks Pro

Step 6: Enter Time

To enter time, you can manually type in the amount of time worked, or you can use the built-in timer to track your hours while you’re working.

Step 7: Add Notes (Optional)

You and your employees can add optional notes about the hours worked.

How To Track Time In QuickBooks Pro

Step 8: Mark As Billable

Mark whether the hours are billable or unbillable using the box in the top right-hand corner.

How To Track Time In QuickBooks Pro

Step 9: Save Time Entry

To record your time, click “Save & Close.” Click “Save & New” if you’re planning on making another time entry.

How To Track Time In QuickBooks Pro

Create A Timesheet

Step 1: Select Employee

Select the proper employee for the hours worked.

How To Track Time In QuickBooks Pro

Step 2: Choose Work Week

Choose the proper work week dates using the calendar icon.

How To Track Time In QuickBooks Pro

Step 3: Select Customer Or Job

Use the drop-down menu to select the customer or job attached to these hours. If multiple projects are being worked on in a single timesheet, use one line per each customer or project.

How To Track Time In QuickBooks Pro

Step 4: Choose Service Item

Use the drop-down menu to select the service item performed for your customer or job during these hours. If you haven’t added any services yet, read our How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro post where we cover how to add service items.

How To Track Time In QuickBooks Pro

Step 5: Choose Payroll Item

Use the drop-down menu to select the service item performed for your customer or job during these hours. If you haven’t added any services yet, read our How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro post where we cover how to add service items.

How To Track Time In QuickBooks Pro

Step 6: Enter Daily Hours

Enter the hours worked each day of the week. (Use the format 0:00 for entering exact hours and minutes; use the format 0.00 if you want QuickBooks to automatically change a decimal into hours and minutes.)

How To Track Time In QuickBooks Pro

Step 7: Verify Total Hours

QuickBooks automatically totals the hours worked, but be sure to double check that the amount looks correct.

How To Track Time In QuickBooks Pro

Step 8: Mark As Billable

Mark whether the hours are billable or unbillable using the box in the top right-hand corner.

How To Track Time In QuickBooks Pro

Step 9: Save Timesheet

To save your timesheet, click “Save & Close.” Click “Save & New” if you’re planning on adding another timesheet.

How To Track Time In QuickBooks Pro

You can now print timesheets or run multiple time-related reports like Time by Job Summary, Time by job Detail, or Time by Item.

If you have any troubleshooting issues, check out the QuickBooks Community or call QuickBooks directly. If you have any further questions, leave a comment below and we’ll do our best to help you.

Chelsea Krause

Chelsea Krause is a writer, avid reader, and researcher. In addition to loving writing, she became interested in accounting software because of her constant desire to learn something new and understand how things work. When she’s not working or daydreaming about her newest story, she can be found drinking obscene amounts of coffee, reading anything written by C.S. Lewis or Ray Bradbury, kayaking and hiking, or watching The X-Files with her husband.

Chelsea Krause

“”

What Is Affirm And What Does It Offer?

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We often talk about how tightening credit standards have changed the face of lending. What’s less discussed is the effect the Great Recession has had on consumers

American credit card debt, currently amounting to around $808 billion, is one of the easiest types of credit to overextend yourself on. Not coincidentally, many younger Americans are avoiding credit cards at a higher rate. Fewer than one-in-three Millenials claim to have a credit card, for example.

That’s where Affirm comes in. Companies like Affirm count on the fact that cardless consumers will still face situations where they need to buy something that they can’t afford.

Table of Contents

How Does Affirm Work?

Affirm offers point-of-sale (POS) financing. This isn’t a new form of lending, but rather a technology-assisted reinvention of an old lending model.

Here’s an example of how the process works:

You decide you can’t possibly live without the hottest new gaming console a moment longer, so you add it to your online shopping cart and proceed to checkout. Among your options to pay are the usual credit and debit cards, along with payment processors like PayPal. But this merchant also provides an option to use Affirm, which allows you to take out a short-term loan on the spot to finance the exact cost of your purchase. You’re given the choice of paying back the loan over the course of three, six, or 12 months. Affirm then shows you how much money you’ll be paying back, expressed as both an interest rate and a dollar amount. If you accept, your purchase is processed.

Congratulations, you’re the proud owner of a new game console…and a short-term loan!

Isn’t That Just How A Credit Card Works?

In a sense, sure. Revolving lines of credit and short-term loans have a lot in common. In both cases, you’re “taking out” an amount of money equal to the cost of your purchase, which you’ll be paying back (hopefully) within the next few months. Additionally, in both cases, creditors aren’t concerned with what you’re buying, just the amount you’re requesting/using.

But there are some important differences.

The big one is that Affirm evaluates each loan separately rather than as a line of credit. You won’t be cut off when you hit a specified credit limit, but your loan may be denied if you missed payments on other Affirm loans or if they believe you’ve overextended yourself. Additionally, Affirm may not always cover the entirety of your purchase; you may have to make a downpayment.

You can expect APRs between 10% – 30% with Affirm. The average credit card APR is around 15%, so you can easily end up paying more than you would with a credit card. Loans are capped at $10,000.

Why Would I Want To Use Affirm Instead Of A Credit Card?

The short answer is that it’s mostly a matter of your own spending psychology, but there are some specific reasons why you might choose a POS loan over a credit card purchase.

You Have Poor Credit

Credit card companies aren’t quite as conservative as they were during the financial crisis, but many shoppers may still find themselves unable to access credit. Or they may only qualify for a very low credit limit. POS lenders take credit into account (Affirm, for example, does a soft pull on your credit when you first signup), but don’t weight it as heavily.

You’ve Maxed Out Your Credit Cards

While you may want to reconsider taking on more debt, there’s nothing really stopping you from utilizing both credit cards and POS loans.

Special Offers

It’s not unusual for credit card companies to offer 0% APR introductory rates. PoS loans also come with 0% APR offers, but they’re a little different. Instead of being attached to new accounts, Affirm will sometimes offer 0% APRs at specific partner stores.

You Like The Way The Loans Are Structured

Credit cards offer enormous flexibility in how they’re repaid. Other than making the required minimum monthly payment, you can throw any amount of money you want at your balance every month. At the same time, it’s not necessarily clear how much you should be paying to make a good dent in your balance. A POS loan has a prescribed end and tells you the amount of money you need to pay each month in order to meet it.

Final Thoughts

There’s a lot of diversity in the types of financing being offered to individuals and businesses these days. POS loans fit into the broader alternative lending trends. That is to say, they’re fast, easy, and more expensive. Still, they do provide options for borrowers who have a hard time otherwise accessing credit, or who wish to avoid credit cards’ minimum payment trap.

Meanwhile, if you’re a business that prefers old-fashioned credit cards, why not take a look at our business credit card comparison chart?

Chris Motola

Chris Motola is an independent writer, journalist, programmer, and game designer who has mastered the art of using his laptop in no fewer than 541 positions, most of them unergonomic. When he’s not pushing keys or swiping screens, he’s probably out exploring urban or natural environs, experimenting in the kitchen, or delighting/annoying his friends with his ideas and theories.

Chris Motola

“”

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

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How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Before you can move on to the fun of invoicing customers, you need to have products and services to invoice.

We already explained one method of adding items in our How to Import Items Into QuickBooks Pro post, but you can also add items manually.

There are three types of items you can add in QuickBooks: non-inventory items, inventory items, and services. We’ll walk you through how to add each type of item step by step.

Table of Contents

Add Non-Inventory Items

Begin by going to Lists>Items List>Item>New (or you can use the shortcut “Ctrl+N” once you’re on the Items List page).

Step 1: Select Appropriate Item Type

Use the drop-down menu to select “Non-inventory Part.”

How To Add Items in QuickBooks Pro

Step 2: Add An Item Name

Type your item’s name or number.

How To Add Items in QuickBooks Pro

Step 3: Designate Whether It Is A Subitem

If your item is a subitem of another non-inventory part, check the “subitem of” box and use the drop-down menu to select the proper non-inventory part.

How To Add Items in QuickBooks Pro

Step 4: Check The Box If The Item Is Used In Assemblies

If your item is used in assemblies or purchase for a specific job, click check the box.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 5: Write A Sales Description

Write a sales description. Your customers will see this description on the quotes and estimates you send them.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 6: Enter Sales Price

Enter the sales price you charge for this item.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 7: Choose Tax Settings

Use the drop-down menu to select whether your item is taxable or nontaxable.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 8: Select Income Account

Select a default account where your income will be recorded.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 9: Save Item

Click the blue “OK” button in the top right-hand corner to save your item, or select “next” if you’re planning on adding another item.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Add Inventory Items

Begin by going to Lists>Items List>Item>New (or you can use the shortcut “Ctrl+N” once you’re on the Items List page).

Step 1: Select Appropriate Item Type

Use the drop-down menu to select “Inventory Part.”

How to Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 2: Add An Item Name

Type your item’s name or number.

How To Add Items in QuickBooks Pro

Step 3: Determine Whether It Is A Subitem

If your item is a subitem of another inventory part, check the “subitem of” box and use the drop-down menu to select the proper inventory part.

How To Add Items in QuickBooks Pro

Step 4: Add A Purchases Description

Next, add purchase information starting with a purchases description.

How to Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 5: Enter Purchase Cost

Enter the cost you pay for this inventory item.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 6: Select COGS Account

Select a default account where your COGS (Cost of Goods Sold) will be recorded.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 7: Attach A Preferred Vendor (Optional)

If desired, you can select a preferred vendor for your item.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 8: Write A Sales Description

Write a sales description. Your customers will see this description on the quotes and estimates you send them.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 9: Enter Sales Price

Enter the sales price you charge for this item.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 10: Choose Tax Settings

Use the drop-down menu to select whether your item is taxable or nontaxable.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 11: Select Income Account

Select a default account where your income will be recorded.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 12: Select Asset Account

Select a default account where your inventory assets will be recorded.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 13: Set Reorder Point

One of the best parts about QuickBooks inventory feature is that you can set a reorder point for your inventory. The software will send you a low inventory reminder when an item’s count hits the reorder point you set.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 14: Enter Amount On Hand

Enter the item amount you have on hand.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 15: Verify Total Value

QuickBooks will automatically calculate the total value of your inventory on hand for a particular item, but double check that the numbers look right before proceeding to the next step.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 16: Select Inventory Date

Choose the date of your last inventory count (the count that gave you the “amount on hand” data).

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 17: Save Item

Click the blue “OK” button in the top right-hand corner to save your item, or select “next” if you’re planning on adding another item.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Add Services

Begin by going to Lists>Items List>Item>New (or you can use the shortcut “Ctrl+N” once you’re on the Items List page).

Step 1: Select Appropriate Item Type

Use the drop-down menu to select “Service.”

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 2: Add An Item Name

Type your service’s name or number.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 3: Determine Whether It Is A Subitem

If your item is a subitem of another service, check the “subitem of” box and use the drop-down menu to select the proper service item.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 4: Write A Service Description

Write a description of the service you’re selling. Your customers will see this description on the quotes and estimates you send them.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 5: Add Service Rate

Enter the rate you charge for this service.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 6: Choose Tax Settings

Use the drop-down menu to select whether your service item is taxable or nontaxable.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 7: Select Income Account

Select a default account where your income will be recorded.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Step 8: Save Item

Click the blue “OK” button in the top right-hand corner to save your item, or select “next” if you’re planning on adding another item.

How To Add Items In QuickBooks Pro

Once you save your items, you can view them in the Items List and start invoicing customers.

If you have any troubleshooting issues, check out the QuickBooks Community or call QuickBooks directly. If you have any further questions, leave a comment below and we’ll do our best to help you.

Chelsea Krause

Chelsea Krause is a writer, avid reader, and researcher. In addition to loving writing, she became interested in accounting software because of her constant desire to learn something new and understand how things work. When she’s not working or daydreaming about her newest story, she can be found drinking obscene amounts of coffee, reading anything written by C.S. Lewis or Ray Bradbury, kayaking and hiking, or watching The X-Files with her husband.

Chelsea Krause

“”

How To Create Projects In QuickBooks Pro

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How To Create Projects In QuickBooks Pro

In QuickBooks Pro, creating projects (or “jobs” as QuickBooks calls them) and creating customers go hand in hand.

In this post, we’ll cover how to create a project in seven simple steps. (Be sure to create the customer to whom you want to attach the project first.)

Read our How To Add A Customer In QuickBooks Pro post or our How to Import Customers Into QuickBooks Pro to learn how to add customers, or jump straight into creating projects now.

Table of Contents

Create A Project

To begin, go to Customers>Customer Center.

Step 1: Select Customer

Select the customer for whom you want to create a project or job.

How To Create Projects In QuickBooks Pro

Step 2: Go To Job Info

You’ll be taken to a screen that looks like this:

How To Create Projects In QuickBooks Pro

Click on the fifth tab in the bottom left-hand corner. It should read “Job Info.”

Step 3: Enter A Job Description

Add a job description for the project attached to your customer.

How To Create Projects In QuickBooks Pro

Step 4: Choose A Job Type

Choose whether this job is commercial or residential.

How To Create Projects In QuickBooks Pro

Step 5: Set A Job Status

Set a current status for this project. You can choose between:

  • None
  • Pending
  • Awarded
  • In progress
  • Closed
  • Not awarded

How To Create Projects In QuickBooks Pro

Step 6: Mark The Start Date, Projected End Date & End Date

Use the calendars to set a project start date, projected end date, and end date (if available).

How To Create Projects In QuickBooks Pro

Step 7: Save Job

Click the blue “OK” button at the bottom of the screen to save your job.

How to Create Projects in QuickBooks Pro

Now that your job is successfully saved, you can look at the progress of your projects by running some of the many job reports QuickBooks offers. You can run reports like Profit & Loss by Job, Job Profitability Summary, Unbilled Costs by Job, Customer Balance Detail by Open Balances, and more.

To learn more about running reports, keep your eyes open for the next installments of our QuickBooks Desktop Pro 101 Series.

You can also begin creating estimates and invoices from the job you just created.

For troubleshooting issues, check out the QuickBooks Community or call QuickBooks directly. If you have any further questions, leave a comment below and we’ll do our best to help you.

Chelsea Krause

Chelsea Krause is a writer, avid reader, and researcher. In addition to loving writing, she became interested in accounting software because of her constant desire to learn something new and understand how things work. When she’s not working or daydreaming about her newest story, she can be found drinking obscene amounts of coffee, reading anything written by C.S. Lewis or Ray Bradbury, kayaking and hiking, or watching The X-Files with her husband.

Chelsea Krause

“”

10 Tips For Building A Winning Patreon Campaign

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patreon success

It used to be that if you wanted to try crowdfunding as a means of monetizing your physical and/or creative output, you had to set up a campaign on a site like Kickstarter (see our review) or Indiegogo (see our review). That’s all fine and good — after all, these sites have raised billions in funding for creative business ventures of all kinds. But what if you want to crowdfund on a continuing basis and have your fans support you with monthly (or per creation) payments? Platforms like Kickstarter aren’t set up to facilitate that — not until Drip becomes open to all, at least.

Enter Patreon (see our review). Patreon enables you to draw an ongoing income from The Crowd by soliciting donations from patrons on either a per-month or per-creation basis. It’s an ideal crowdfunding model for podcasters, YouTubers, musicians, journalists, artists, and anyone else who creates content on a regular basis and would like to be compensated for it.

Just remember: Crowdfunding isn’t Field Of Dreams, and you’re not Kevin Costner. If you build it, they won’t necessarily come. You have to go in with the mindset that building up your Patreon is a job and your patrons are customers who will require content of value in return for their investment. Rewards crowdfunding isn’t charity — it’s business, albeit with a strong human element.

Here’s what you need to do to ensure you have the best possible chance at Patreon success.

(If you are, in fact, Kevin Costner, I apologize.)

Table of Contents

1. Have An Existing Fan Base

Some people may see popular Patreon creators who pull in several thousand dollars a month and come away thinking that Patreon built their fan base. This line of thinking gets it backward. Patreon is just a platform for your work — it’s not going to generate interest in what you do if the interest isn’t there in the first place!

A successful Patreon campaign requires that you have a base of potential patrons — not necessarily a huge base, but one that exists — who are already inclined to support you financially in exchange for access to your content. In reality, the path to being a winning Patreon creator starts long before you sign up with Patreon. Typically, people don’t browse randomly through Patreon creator pages looking for unknown creators to support. They seek out the campaigns of creators they already know and appreciate.

Before you start with Patreon, acquire a following of people who are willing to drop at least a dollar or two per month on your content. Otherwise, you’ll just be wasting your time.

2. Post A Video. Be Concise!

Building a personal connection with your followers is key in inducing them to open their wallets for you. There’s no more direct and efficient way to bolster this connection than with a killer video.

Don’t use your video to appeal to the consciences of your fans and plead for support on moral/charitable grounds. Regardless of the merits of such a case, it just doesn’t work. Approach your introductory video as if you were making an elevator pitch to investors because essentially, that is what you’re doing.

Appear personally in your video. Be passionate and sincere. Make sure to explain how the rewards system works and what patrons will receive at different tiers of support — some of your followers likely don’t know how Patreon works. Also, don’t post a video longer than three minutes (or so). People’s attention spans aren’t getting any longer.

gamer chair GIF

Nobody’s going to expect to see a video with Hollywood-level production values. Just be direct, sincere, and explain exactly what patrons will get in exchange for their support.

3. Examine Other Patreon Campaigns

If you’re trying to raise money by applying for a bank loan, you don’t get to study the loan applications of other applicants to see what works and what doesn’t. Crowdfunding platforms, however, are much more transparent. With Patreon, you can check out every active campaign on the site, along with the number of patrons each has acquired. And while creators don’t have to make their monthly (or per-creation) earnings public, about half of them do.

This is tremendously valuable information! Before you launch, do your homework and study the Patreon campaigns of other creators in your field. Take note of what characteristics successful campaigns have in common, along with the commonalities between campaigns that generate less interest.

This campaign data is too valuable to go unexamined. Take advantage of it!

4. Set Goals

With Patreon, you don’t have to set funding goals, but I highly recommend it. When you set a goal, you’re telling your patrons that you’ll be able to complete a certain project or make some campaign-related purchase once you’ve hit a certain level of funding. It’s both a way to demonstrate that you aspire to grow your operations and a way to inspire more patronage by letting people know what they stand to gain should your goals be met.

You can set as many goals as you like, but stick with a few at a time so as to not inundate people with information. Once you reach a goal, consider setting a new one so you’ll always have a few goals laid out in front of you. These goals can serve as inspiration for both you and your patrons.

5. Create Several Reward Tiers

In general, it’s a good idea to offer some kind of reward to patrons at the $1-$2 subscription level to appeal to the broadest possible swath of the populace. Many people divide their support among numerous Patreon creators at $1-$2 per month/creation, and you’ll want to appeal to this type of subscriber. However, you also want to set higher reward tiers for the bigger spenders, because a certain percentage of your supporters — and it can be a small percentage — will likely jump at the chance.

Patreon has posted data indicating that as your number of reward levels increases, so too does the chance that you’ll process at least $100 in your first month.

The key is to offer your potential patrons several options for supporting you in exchange for rewards so as to appeal to both the big spenders and the small spenders. Offer a lil’ something for everybody.

6. Promote Your Patreon On Social Media

If you have a social media presence and you’re not using it to promote your Patreon, you’re doing it wrong. People who know you and are familiar with what you do are more likely to support you. This goes back to my first point regarding tapping your existing followers for support.

You might be a bit squeamish about annoying your social media followers with requests for crowdfunding support. Do it anyway! Otherwise, you’re effectively leaving money on the table. Plus, if your campaign is unique or unusual enough, it might just go viral, thus getting you all the more attention — and more attention leads to more patron moolah!

7. Be Mindful Of Shipping Costs When Offering Rewards

It’s great to offer cool rewards, but if you’re not careful about who you’re offering physical rewards to, you could end up blowing your budget on shipping costs. This is particularly true if you have lots of overseas backers.

hovering stop motion GIF by Reuben Armstrong

Make sure that the rewards you offer at lower levels of support are either digital in nature or are the sort of thing that can be sent in a simple envelope. If you’re sending packages overseas to people who support you at $5/month, you may well find yourself in deep doo-doo.

8. Create Continuously

This one may be a bit obvious, but it’s true — particularly if your Patreon campaign offers per-month subscriptions. If your content releases are few and far between, patrons are going to realize they’re not getting much bang for their buck.

If you’re focused on offering major works a few times a year, platforms like Kickstarter and Indiegogo are probably better suited to you. Patreon’s crowdfunding model requires that you continuously release bits of content on a regular basis. If you’re building up to publishing a novel or something along those lines, you can always launch a Kickstarter/Indiegogo campaign and run it alongside your Patreon campaign.

9. Keep Creating Things For Non-Patrons

If you’re earning Patreon money for your work, that’s great. Just don’t make all your content exclusive to patrons. You want to continue to grow your casual audience and spread awareness of your work in order to expand the pool of people inclined to become a patron of yours in the future, and you can’t do that if you put everything behind the paywall.

Freebies make for good patron-bait. Give people just enough to leave them wanting more.

10. Send Patrons Personalized Messages (Particularly When Starting Out)

It always helps your cause to make your patrons feel loved and wanted, and while it may not be possible to send personalized thank-you messages to your every patron once you’ve hit it big, it’s definitely worth doing when you’re starting out. Patrons may feel like they’re taking a chance on you in your early days, so why not go the extra mile to thank them for having faith in you?

Show patrons some extra TLC when you’re starting out, and they’ll be more likely to stick with you. It’s just common sense.

Final Thoughts

It would be nice if good content sold itself. Unfortunately, with Patreon, just as in meatspace, this just isn’t how things work. You’ve got to be methodical and strategic when devising your Patreon campaign if you want to draw significant funding. Most people don’t have the disposable income to support every creator they like just out of the goodness of their hearts. You have to make your patrons feel emotionally invested in your success while simultaneously offering them tangible benefits in exchange for their patronage.

Remember, your followers don’t owe you anything. They’re struggling too! However, if you can enrich their lives with engaging content while making them feel as though they have a stake in your success, your Patreon campaign can be a winning proposition for everybody.

Jason Vissers

Jason Vissers is a writer, cereal chef and Netflix aficionado from San Diego. A native Californian who enjoys the beach, Jason nonetheless prefers to do his surfing on the World Wide Web, the raddest wave of them all. Jason can’t eat raisins.

Jason Vissers

“”

The Complete Guide To Card Brand Fees For Merchant Accounts

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credit card processing fees image

In this guide, we’re tackling a surprisingly tricky and supremely detail-oriented topic in the world of card payment processing: card brand fees. Navigating these fees on your merchant account statement can feel like you’re on a scavenger hunt you didn’t sign up for — and not the fun kind. There’s no avoiding the fact that the devil’s in the details when it comes to card brand fees, but too many merchants overlook or misunderstand them at their own peril. Fortunately, Merchant Maverick is here to help you:

  • Understand card brand fees and how they apply to your specific merchant account.
  • Identify these fees on your statement with our reference list of commonly-charged card brand fees.
  • Discern if your card processor is ripping you off by messing with these fees.

Let’s dive right in, shall we?

Table of Contents

Card Brand Fees VS Interchange Fees

Wait, aren’t these the same thing? If you thought so, you’re not the only one. Many merchants are surprised to learn that interchange fees and card brand fees are two completely separate types of fees. If this includes you, then you are about to join the elite class of merchants who understand the difference!

The common conflation of these two fee types stems from the fact that both are considered part of the “wholesale” cost of card processing, as opposed to the “markup.” In processing lingo, “wholesale” simply means that your processor must pay these fees to a separate entity in the processing chain instead of keeping the money for its own use.

The key distinction between these two sub-categories of wholesale fees, therefore, is which link in the chain is owed each fee. Here’s the difference: An interchange fee goes to to the customer’s card-issuing bank, while card brand fees are ultimately paid to the actual card brands themselves (e.g., Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express).

For both of these wholesale costs, card processors and the merchant services providers (MSPs) who manage your accounts are faced with a choice. Do they itemize and “pass-through” these wholesale fees directly to the merchant? Or, do they absorb the wholesale cost into the pricing structure in other ways, perhaps by charging a higher processing rate or monthly fee? Or, do they use some solution in between?

As a merchant, you’re tasked with knowing how your own MSP handles wholesale fees — both interchange and card brand. We’re only addressing card brand fees in this article. For more on interchange fees and how the different pricing models (such as interchange-plus) incorporate them, see our complete guide to rates and fees.

Card brand fees are typically either a percentage of volume charge or a flat amount per instance. Some apply to all your transactions, while others only apply in very specific situations, such as when an authorization is abnormal in some way. We’ll cover these individual fees and their circumstances in the itemized list at the end of this article.

The good news is that card brand fees have set, established amounts across the industry. Like interchange fees, they’re considered non-negotiable, and the processor has no control over the amounts. The bad news is that finding the true wholesale amounts for card brand fees is generally more difficult than looking up interchange rates.

Before we delve into why these fees are so pesky, note that they’re also called card network fees, card association fees, or assessments (although, as you’ll see, an “assessment” is technically a specific sub-category of card brand fee).

Card Brand Fees Are Especially Tricky

Due to several regrettable quirks of the processing industry, card brand fees are particularly complicated and opaque. Here are the primary reasons:

  • They’re not displayed on the card brand websites. By contrast, interchange tables are readily available at the Visa and MasterCard websites.
  • You can’t call the card brands and ask about the fees. You’ll be redirected right back to your own MSP to answer any questions. It’s incredibly frustrating that we can’t rely on the card brands to disclose these base costs, and instead must rely on processors and MSPs to be honest when they pass the fees through.
  • Multiple fees may apply to the same authorization or transaction. For example, transactions paid with a foreign-issued card incur separate international surcharges on top of the regular assessment that’s applied to all your transactions.
  • The fees change (usually increase) over time. And not all at once. While they’re rarely decreased, sometimes particular fees are eliminated and/or replaced with others. Occasionally, a completely new fee is instituted, to which the only fitting response is…

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  • Many of the fees are known by multiple names and abbreviations, and it’s often difficult to match the names on your own statement with any established names.
  • Two or more fees may be combined into one on your statement, making them hard to identify and verify.
  • The fees can be spread throughout multiple sections of your statement — not grouped all together or even labeled properly — just in case you weren’t already driven bonkers by this stuff. Often, I’ve seen them buried inside “interchange” or “authorization” sections.
  • Brazen processors or MSPs may add their own markups to card brand fees without telling you. Or, they may invent fees and give them card-brand-sounding names. Yuck, right?
  • Most of the fees are small, so can be overlooked as inconsequential. They can still add up quite quickly, but the real issue at stake is the overall honesty and transparency of your provider. Regardless of whether an extra fee or markup here and there isn’t costing you that much, wouldn’t you still rather know about it?

How To Stay On Top Of Card Brand Fees

It’s a shame that merchants can’t rely on Gandalf’s wizardry for this quest. Instead, we suggest you follow our tips for navigating these fees:

  • Be aware that you may be charged only some, or even none, of these fees. This depends on several factors, including 1) your pricing model, 2) what your MSP decides to pass through versus absorb, and 3) what happens with your transactions and authorizations in a given month. With many blended, tiered or flat-rate plans, all or most of the card brand fees are absorbed into the overall cost of your account instead of itemized and passed through to you. There are no guarantees with any pricing model, however, so check your statements anyway!
  • Obtain a list of card brand fees from your merchant account provider. If they’re passing these fees through to you, they should provide a detailed list with the specific names and abbreviations they’re using.
  • Use a secondary, neutral source to confirm fee amounts. Our list below is a great place to start.
  • Keep a running list of the card brand fees you’ve seen on your own statements, along with the amounts. Reference lists are handy, but a personalized list is easier to use and track over time than a litany of every possible fee for every possible circumstance.
  • Processors shouldn’t mark up these fees without clearly informing you. And really, they should leave these fees alone completely. If the fee is charged at all, it should be passed through at cost.
  • Trust the amount more than the name. Identifying a fee on your statement is often more about looking at the rate or amount charged, as well as the specific number/volume/type of transactions to which it was applied. The process of elimination can be very effective here.
  • Definitely be suspicious if you spot extra fees that aren’t on the reference list, any that seem like duplicates or that can’t be matched with established values, or those that look too high. Don’t worry too much if a fee seems too low; it’s possible your processor is just absorbing or redistributing some of the cost.
  • Be on the lookout for fee change notifications. October and April are common transition points, but the fees can change at any time. Good processors will notify you (sometimes on the statement itself) when a card brand fee is set to increase or change. If your processor doesn’t fall in this camp, it’s all the more important that you bookmark this article.
  • Ask before you sign. If you’re just signing up for an MSP or changing providers, ask how it handles card brand fees in addition to interchange costs. Be very clear that you know the difference and want the specifics. Remember, not all customer service reps are created equal in their knowledge of this topic. Ask to be transferred up the chain if you’re not satisfied.

Final Thoughts (Let’s Crowdsource This!)

As merchants, you are on the front lines for tracking card brand fees. We believe your input will be key in keeping our reference list up to date. Some of you have processors who actually do a good job organizing and displaying card brand fees on statements, as well as notifying you of any upcoming changes. Is a fee on our list is no longer accurate? Are we missing a new, legitimate fee? Together, we can also help other merchants whose processors are abysmal at communicating fees, or even cheating business owners. Let’s all team up on this — leave a comment below!
International Service Assessment (ISA)

  • Surcharge owed on transactions that are processed in the US on a card issued outside the US.
  • 1.20% – International Service Assessment (ISA) – Non-US currency
    • Same fee as above, but incurs this higher rate when the transaction is settled in the cardholder’s local currency.
    • 0.45% – International Acquirer Fee (IAF)
      • Applies in same circumstance as the International Assessment above.

    Per-Item:

    • $0.0195 – Acquirer Processing Fee (APF): Credit
      • Owed on all credit transactions for US-based businesses, irrespective of where cardholder/issuer is located.
    • $0.0155 – Acquirer Processing Fee (APF): Debit
      • Owed on all debit transactions for US-acquired businesses, irrespective of where the cardholder/issuer is located.
    • $0.0195 – Credit Voucher Fee (Credit)
      • Owed on all refunds issued in the US via credit card.
    • $0.0155 – Credit Voucher Fee (Debit)
      • Owed on all refunds issued in the US via debit card.
    • $0.0018 – System File Transmission Fee / Base II Fee
      • Owed on all authorized transactions submitted for settlement (in addition to the above transaction fees). Base II refers to Visa’s settlement network.
      • Outdated Visa settlement fees:
        • $0.0025 – Settlement Network Access Fee. Base II fee may still be called by this name but should be $0.0018.
        • $0.0047 – Kilobyte (KB) Access Fee. Should not be charged in addition to the above.
    • $0.10 – Transaction Integrity Fee (TIF)
      • Owed on a debit or prepaid Visa transaction that fails to meet CPS requirements (e.g., not settled in 24 hours, no AVS submitted on a keyed transaction).
    • $0.09 – Misuse of Authorization Fee
      • Owed when a transaction is authorized, but not followed by a matching cleared transaction, or when a canceled or timed-out authorization is improperly reversed.
    • $0.20 – Zero Floor Limit Fee
      • Owed when the merchant submits a settlement transaction without an authorization.
    • $0.025 – Zero Dollar Verification Fee
      • Owed when the merchant verifies a cardholder’s information (e.g., AVS, CVC2) without authorizing a transaction.

    Other:

    • Varies – Fixed Acquirer Network Fee (FANF)
      • A flat fee based on your volume per month, type of business (Merchant Category Code or MCC), number of locations, etc. Typically charged quarterly or monthly. Learn more about the FANF here.

    MasterCard Network Fees

    Volume-Based:

    • 0.12% – Assessment / Acquirer Brand Volume Fee – Transactions <$1,000 and all Signature Debit
      • Owed on gross commercial and consumer credit transactions less than $1,000, as well as all signature debit.
    • 0.14% – Assessment / Acquirer Brand Volume Fee – Transactions >$1,000)
      • Owed on gross commercial and consumer credit transactions exceeding $1,000; excludes signature debit. Note: May be listed as 0.02% surcharge over the above assessment.
    • 0.0075% – Acquirer License Fee (ALF) / License Volume Fee 
      • Owed on gross transaction volume. Increased from 0.0045% Oct. 2017. Note: sometimes combined with the above assessments, bringing the totals to 0.1275% and 0.1475%, respectively.
    • 0.60% – International / Cross-Border Assessment Fee (Domestic)
      • Surcharge owed by US-based merchants on transactions on a card issued outside the U.S. settled in USD. (Similar to Visa’s ISA.)
    • 1.00% – International / Cross-Border Assessment Fee (Foreign)
      • Same fee as above, but incurs this higher rate when the transaction is settled in the cardholder’s local currency. (Similar to Visa’s ISA.)
    • 0.85% – International Acquirer Program Support Fee
      • Applies in same circumstance as the Cross-Border Assessment above. (Similar to Visa’s IAF.)
    • 0.01% – Digital Enablement Fee
      • Owed on all card-not-present transactions for signature debit, consumer credit, and commercial credit cards.
    • 1.57%Global Wholesale Travel Transaction B2B
      • Owed instead of regular assessments, international surcharges, and NABU fees when the MasterCard B2B (MSB) card product has been used. Applies to a specific set of Merchant Category Codes (MCCs) in the travel and entertainment sector.

    Per-Item:

    • $0.0195 – Network Access and Brand Usage Fee (NABU Fee)
      • Owed on all US-based authorizations, regardless if settled. (Similar to Visa’s APF, Discover’s Data Usage Fee.)
    • $0.0044 – Kilobyte (KB) Access Fee
      • Owed on each authorized transaction submitted for settlement. Note: we’re in the process of checking to see if it’s still charged.
    • $0.01 – AVS Fee (Card-Not-Present)
      • Owed on card-not-present transactions processed using Address Verification Service (AVS). Often shows up on a statement under “Authorizations.”
    • $0.005 – AVS Fee (Card-Present)
      • Owed on Card-Present transactions processed using AVS. Often shows up under “Authorizations.”
    • $0.0025 – Card Validation Code Fee
      • Owed on all transactions involving CVC2 authorization.
    • $0.025 – Account Status Inquiry Fee
      • Owed when a merchant verifies AVS or CVC2 without authorizing a transaction.
    • $0.03 – SecureCode Transaction Fee
      • Owed on all MC SecureCode verification attempts (SecureCode service requires merchant signup).
    • $0.055 – Processing Integrity Fee
      • Owed for transactions that do not comply with best practices for transactions (i.e., not properly cleared/settled/reversed within MasterCard’s time frames for the type of transaction). Below are similar fees for other types of authorization integrity issues:
        • $0.045 – Processing Integrity Fee, Pre-Authorization
        • $0.045 – Processing Integrity Fee, Undefined Authorization
        • $0.040 minimum, or 0.25% – Processing Integrity Fee: Final Authorization
    • $0.012 – Processing Integrity Fee Detail Reporting
      • Owed on any authorization that generates a processing integrity fee for pre-authorization, undefined authorization, or final authorization.

    Other:

    • $1.25/mo. ($15 per year) – Merchant Location Fee
      • $15 annually for each location with traditional MSPs/processors ($3 annually for payment facilitators like Square). Not applicable to merchants processing under $200/month, nor to charitable or religious organizations.
    • $500 – Yearly Registration Fee
      • For online e-cigarettes/vaping businesses.

     Discover Network Fees

    Volume-Based:

    • 0.13% – Assessment
      • Owed on gross transaction volume.
    • 0.55% – International Processing Fee
      • Owed on US-based transactions processed with a card issued outside the U.S.
    • 0.80% – International Service Fee
      • Applies in same circumstance as the International Processing Fee above.

    Per-Item:

    • $0.0195 – Data Usage Fee
      • Owed on all authorized transactions. (Similar to Visa’s APF and MasterCard’s NABU Fees.)
    • $0.0025 – Network Authorization Fee
      • Owed on all authorized transactions. Replaced the Data Transmission Fee in 2013, which only applied to settled transactions.

    American Express OptBlue Network Fees

    American Express OptBlue

    Volume-Based:

    • 0.15% – Assessment
      • Owed on gross transaction volume.
    • 0.40% – International Assessment / Inbound Fee
      • Surcharge owed on transactions involving a card issued outside the US.
    • 0.30% – Card-Not-Present Surcharge
      • Surcharge owed on any transactions considered CNP, including keyed and ecommerce transactions.
    • 0.75%Technical Specification Non-Compliance
      • Owed on transactions that do not meet Amex standards, such as an authorization not obtained at the same time as a sale. Much rarer than Visa and MasterCard fees for transaction integrity problems.

    Per-Item:

    Rose Holman

    Rose’s eclectic professional background includes teaching, research, retail, non-profits and music. Upon returning to her Pacific Northwest roots following a four year stint in the tiny country of Luxembourg, she immediately applied her innate curiosity and lifelong love of explaining stuff to the world of merchant accounts. Her hobbies include devouring podcasts, practicing minimalism, and singing four-part harmony with her husband and two kids.

    Rose Holman

    “”

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

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    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks

    Most businesses aren’t one-man shows. Odds are, you have a team of people who make running your business possible. But there’s more to having employees than meets the eye.

    Employees mean tax obligations, payroll schedules, and much more. That’s why we’re going to walk you through how to properly add employees into QuickBooks Pro, how to save important employee tax information, and how to set payroll defaults for your employees. Depending on the number of employees you have, this process can take quite a bit of time, but we’ll walk you through step by step to make everything as easy as possible.

    To begin, go to Employees>Employee Center>Add Employee…

    Employee information is divided into four sections: Personal, Address & Contact, Payroll Information, and Employment Information.

    Table of Contents

    Personal

    1. Enter Employee’s Legal Name

    Type your employee’s legal last name.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    2. Edit Print Settings

    Choose how you want your employee’s name printed on checks.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    3. Input Employee’s Social Security Number

    Type your employee’s social security number using this format: XXX XX XXXX.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    4. Select Employee’s Gender

    Use the drop-down menu to select your employee’s gender.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    5. Record Employee’s Date of Birth

    Use the drop-down calendar to select your employee’s date of birth.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    6. Select Employee’s Marital Status

    Select your employee’s marital status. The options include:

    • Married
    • Single
    • Divorced
    • Separated
    • Widowed
    • Domestic Partner

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    7. Mark Employee’s Citizenship

    Select whether or not your employee is a US citizen using the drop-down menu.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    8. Select Employee’s Ethnicity

    Use the drop-down menu to select your employee’s ethnicity. Choose from:

    • Amercian Indian | Alaska Native
    • Asian
    • Black | African American
    • Hawaiian | Pacific Islander
    • Hispanic | Latino
    • White
    • Two or more races

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    9. Enter Any Disability Information (If Applicable)

    Enter information regarding any employee disabilities. Use the drop-down menu to indicate if the employee is disabled.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    If “Yes” is selected, you can add any additional information using the disability description line.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    10. Add I-9 Information

    If your employee is not a US citizen, mark whether there is an I-9 form on file for that employee using the drop-down menu.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    Also, select the date their work authorization expires using the drop-down calendar.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    11. Mark Employee’s Military Status

    Use the drop-down menu to select whether or not your employee is a US veteran.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    If you selected yes, mark their military status as active or reserve.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    12. Enable Payroll (Optional)

    At this point, you can enable payroll if desired. This feature comes at an additional cost. Click the blue “turn on payroll” link to be taken to QuickBooks Payroll page.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    Select the pricing plan and follow QuickBooks’ Get Started With Payroll guide to set up your payroll.

    Address & Contact

    13. Enter Employee’s Address

    Add your employee’s address information.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    14. Insert Employee’s Phone Number

    Type in your employee’s main phone number.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    15. Add Employee’s Email

    Enter your employee’s main email.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    16. Record Employee Details

    Use the drop-down menus to save six fields of employee details, including:

    • Work phone
    • Home phone
    • Mobile
    • phone
    • mobile
    • Fax
    • Alt Fax
    • CC Email
    • Alt Email 1
    • Alt Email 2
    • Website
    • LinkedIn
    • Facebook
    • Twitter
    • URL 1
    • URL 2
    • URL 3
    • URL 4
    • Skype ID
    • Other 1
    • Other 2
    • Other 3

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    17. Enter Emergency Contacts

    Add a primary and secondary emergency contact for your employees. Include the emergency contact’s name, phone number, and relation.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    18. Add Employee ID

    Add your employee’s account number or employee ID if applicable.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    19. Create Custom Fields

    You can create a custom field for your employee. Click the “Define Fields” button in the bottom right-hand corner of the screen. Then write a label for your custom field and select whether that custom field applies to contact, vendors, or employees.

    How to Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Payroll Information

    20. Create Payroll Schedule

    If desired, create a payroll schedule for your employee. According to QuickBooks, “Payroll schedules allow you to group employees who have the same pay frequency in whichever way that helps make your payroll runs convenient and hassle-free.”

    To create a payroll schedule, go to Payroll Schedule>Add New. You’ll be taken to the screen below, where you’ll be prompted to tell the software what you want to name the payroll schedule, how often your employees get paid, the pay period end date, and the date that should appear on paychecks for the pay period.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    Once all of the information looks right, click the blue “OK” button in the bottom right-hand corner of the screen.

    21. Select Pay Frequency

    Select how often you pay your employees. You can choose from:

    • Daily
    • Weekly
    • Biweekly
    • Semimonthly
    • Monthly
    • Quarterly
    • Annually

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    22. Enable Direct Deposit

    If you are set up for QuickBooks payroll, you can create direct deposit for your employees. SImply click on the “Direct deposit” button in the top right-hand corner of the screen and follow QuickBooks’ Direct Deposit: Setting Up Employees post for further instructions.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    23. Add Tax Information

    Next, you’ll need to add your employee’s tax information. This step may require the assistance of your accountant or tax professional. Click on the tax button in the top right-hand corner.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    Federal Taxes

    Employee taxes are divided into three sections: federal, state, and other. For the federal tax section, first, select your employee’s filing status.

    Then note any allowances your employee claims.

    Next, enter any extra withholding value.

    If your employee is subject to Medicare, social security, advance earned income credit, or federal unemployment tax (or any combination of the four), make sure the appropriate boxes are clicked. Don’t click “OK” quite yet.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    State Taxes

    Next click on the “State” tax tab. Select the state your employee works in.

    Certain additional criteria may pop up depending on the state you collect. For example, when we selected California, an SUI (State Unemployment Insurance) and an SDI (State Disability Insurance) box popped up. If your employee qualifies for these, make sure the appropriate boxes are clicked. (Selections vary by state).

    Select a state subject to withholding, if applicable.

    Add any miscellaneous data and/or previous state data. Don’t click “OK” quite yet.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    Other Taxes

    Add any other taxes if needed. If you don’t have any other taxes to add, you can finally click the blue “OK” button in the top right-hand corner. If you do, go the “Other” tab and click on Item>Add New.

    The actual process for adding other taxes is a bit lengthy, but we’ll explain it step by step to make the process as easy as possible.

    Choose your tax from the “Other tax” drop-down menu. If you don’t see your tax, create a “User-Defined Tax.”

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Choose whether you pay the tax or your employee pays the tax. Then click “Next.”

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Enter a name for your tax. Then click “next.”

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Use the drop-down menu to select the name of the associated tax agency.

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Add the number by which that tax agency identifies you.

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Select the liability account to which you want this tax attached. Then click “Next.”

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Next, select a tax tracking type from the drop-down menu. (According to QuickBooks, “The tax tracking type determines how the payroll item appears on tax forms.”) Then click “Next.”

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Choose whether the tax is calculated based on quantity, hours, or neither. Then click “Next.”

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Set a default rate and limit. Use the drop-down menu to select a limit type as well. You can choose from:

    • Annual — restart each year
    • Monthly — restart each month
    • One-time

    Then click “Next.”

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Check the boxes next to items that “increase wages for this tax.” Then click “Next.”

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Check the boxes next to items that “reduce wages for this tax.” Then you can finally click “Finish.”

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Repeat these steps until all other taxes are added into QuickBooks correctly.

    24. Set Sick/Vacation Days Policies

    Enter the proper amount of sick days and vacation days allotted to your employee. Begin by click on the “Sick/Vacation…” button in the top right-hand corner.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    For sick days, you’ll need to add the number of hours available as of the day you began using QuickBooks.

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Then enter the number of hours that have been used so far this year.

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Choose an accrual period. This dictates when your employees get paid for the sick days. Choose from:

    • Beginning of the year (i.e. the first paycheck in January)
    • Every paycheck
    • Every hour on paycheck

    Depending on which option you select, you’ll be asked to enter the hours accrued at the beginning of the year, the hours accrued per paycheck, or the hours accrued per hour paid.

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Enter the maximum number of sick day hours available to that employee.

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    If your employee’s sick pay hours reset each year, check the box.

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Tell QuickBooks what day your business year begins on so it can accurately track the sick days.

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Tell QuickBooks which day to begin accruing sick pay using the drop-down menu.

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Before you click the “OK” button, be sure to add your employee’s vacation days.

    For vacation days, follow the same steps you used for adding sick days. When all of the information looks correct, click the blue “OK” button in the top right-hand corner.

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    25. Choose Employee Pay Rate

    Much like adding “Other Taxes,” adding employee earnings can take a bit of time, but we’ll walk you through the whole process step by step, so you can start recording the proper pay rates for your employees.

    First, click on Item Name>Add New. Select the type of payroll item you’re adding. Choose from:

    • Hourly wages
    • Annual salary
    • Commission
    • Bonus

    Then click “Next.”

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    Choose whether the item you’re creating is for:

    • Regular pay
    • Overtime pay
    • Sick pay
    • Vacation pay

    Then click “Next.”

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    Enter a name for the payroll item. Then click “Next.”

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    Select the expense account you want to be attached to this payroll item.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    Then click “Finish.” Repeat as many times as necessary for other pay rates, like overtime, holiday pay, sick pay, and vacation pay. Be sure to manually fill in the hourly/annual rate for each item.

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Before you click the blue “OK” button at the bottom of the screen, add all necessary deductions and company contributions.

    26. Add Any Deductions Or Company Contributions

    The process for entering addition, deductions, and/or company contributions is incredibly similar to adding earnings. You may need the help of your accountant or tax expert to complete this step.

    To begin, click on Item Name>Add New. Select the type of payroll item you’re adding. Choose from:

    • Addition (tips, advances, etc.)
    • Deduction (health insurance, retirement plans, social security, flexible spending accounts, HSA plans, etc.)
    • Company Contribution (health insurance, retirement plans, social security, flexible spending accounts, HSA plans, etc.)

    Note: According to QuickBooks, the difference between deductions and company contributions is that “the company pays a contribution and the employee pays a deduction.”

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Enter a name for the payroll item. You may be asked to “track expenses by job.” Click “Help” to learn if this setting is right for you. Then click “Next.”

    How to Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    Use the drop-down menu to select the name of the associated tax agency.

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Add the number that tax agency identifies you by.

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Select the liability account and expense account you want this payroll item attached to. Then click “Next.”

    How to Add Employees in QuickBooks

    Select a tax tracking type from the drop-down menu. (According to QuickBooks, “The tax tracking type determines how the payroll item appears on tax forms.”) Then click “Next.”

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    QuickBooks will automatically select the taxes that are affected by the tax tracking type you selected. QuickBooks says, “in most cases, you don’t need to change the selections you see here.” We recommend double checking these selections with your accountant or tax professional to be certain.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    Choose whether the payroll item is calculated based on quantity, hours, or neither. Then click “Next.”

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Set a default rate and limit. Use the drop-down menu to select a limit type as well. You can choose from:

    • Annual — restart each year
    • Monthly — restart each month
    • One-time

    How to Add Employees in QuickBooks

    Then click “Finish.” Repeat as many times as necessary for other additions, deductions, and contributions. Be sure to manually fill in the amount and limit for each item. Once all of the information looks correct move on to the next step. Everything is smooth sailing from here.

    Employment Information

    27. Add Hire Dates

    Enter your employee’s hire date, original hire date, adjusted service date, and release date (if applicable).

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    28. Select Employment Type

    Choose the proper employee type. Choose from:

    • Regular
    • Officer
    • Statutory
    • Owner

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    29. Choose Full-Time Or Part-Time

    Mark whether your employee is full-time or part-time.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    30. Mark Exempt Or Not-Exempt

    Choose whether your employee is tax-exempt or non-tax-exempt.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    31. Choose Key Employee Status

    Here you can mark whether or not this employee is a “key employee.”

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    32. Write Job Title

    Add your employee’s job title.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    33. Attach A Supervisor (Optional)

    Attach a supervisor to your employee.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    34. Select A Department

    Select the proper department.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    35. Write Description (Optional)

    You can choose to write a description for your employee and include it here.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    36. Add Target Bonus (Optional)

    If you have a target bonus for your employee, you can add it here.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    37. Record Any Leave Of Absence Information

    Enter any leave of absence information for your employee. First, select the start date, expected return date, and actual return date (if applicable).

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    Enter the type of leave of absence.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    Add an optional description for the leave of absence.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    Select whether the leave of absence is paid or unpaid.

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    38. Enter Termination Details (If Applicable)

    If applicable, enter the termination details for your employee. First, add the last day worked, last day of benefits, and last day on payroll.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    Add a termination type.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    Next, add a termination reason.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    Select whether or not you would recommend this employee for a rehire in the future.

    How To Add Employees in QuickBooks Pro

    Select whether or not you are protesting an unemployment claim.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    Select “Yes” or “No” for severance paid and add any additional notes.

    How To Add Employees In QuickBooks Pro

    39. Save Your Employee

    Finally, you can click the blue “OK” button at the bottom of the screen to save your employee.

    You can view your employee list or go back to the Employee Center to make sure your employee saved correctly. Repeat this process as many times as needed until all of your employees (and past employees) are successfully added to your QuickBooks account.

    If you have any troubleshooting issues, check out the QuickBooks Community or call QuickBooks directly. If you have any further questions, leave a comment below and we’ll do our best to help you.

    Chelsea Krause

    Chelsea Krause is a writer, avid reader, and researcher. In addition to loving writing, she became interested in accounting software because of her constant desire to learn something new and understand how things work. When she’s not working or daydreaming about her newest story, she can be found drinking obscene amounts of coffee, reading anything written by C.S. Lewis or Ray Bradbury, kayaking and hiking, or watching The X-Files with her husband.

    Chelsea Krause

    “”

    What Is Cybersecurity Insurance?

    Our unbiased reviews and content are supported in part by affiliate partnerships. Learn more.

    You’ve heard of car insurance, home insurance, boat insurance, motorcycle insurance, RV insurance, and even ATV insurance. But have you heard about cybersecurity insurance? As I am sure you are well aware, we are living in a roaring digital age, one that is slowly but surely taking over every aspect of our lives. (Just try finding a modern public restroom that doesn’t offer fully automated facilities.)  Though technology is an amazing asset to most businesses, it also has a dark side, especially when it comes to the online world.

    We’ve all been horrified by the big time corporation data breaches. Who could forget the fallout from the massive T.J. Maxx, Target, and Equifax hacks (to name, literally, a few)? But while many big-name chains have been successfully hacked, a Data Breach Investigation Report released by Verizon found that 71 percent of cyber attacks are directed at small businesses because they do not have adequate protection. If you are a small business owner who has little or no security measures in place, these statistics are not in your favor.

    If this article is already hitting a little too close to home, then it might be time to re-evaluate your security measures. First, implementing a solid security system that sufficiently protects your business is paramount to making yourself a less desirable target. Second, it is important to understand that even if you have the most secure protocols and procedures, there is always a chance that someone will be able to hack into your system. If that day ever comes, you want to be prepared with a backup plan, and that plan should include cybersecurity insurance.

    Table of Contents

    What Is Cybersecurity Insurance?

    The concept of protecting ourselves from the aftermath of cyber attacks is still so new that the industry itself has yet to decide on a name, let alone a universal spelling for the service. Cybersecurity insurance (also referred to as cyber-liability or data-breach liability insurance) was introduced to the market over a decade ago. But few businesses have adopted, let alone heard about this vital form of protection.

    The United States Department of Homeland Security says that cybersecurity is “designed to mitigate losses from a variety of cyber incidents, including data breaches, business interruption, and network damage.” If your company ever does face the horrible consequences of a data breach, you will be more than happy that you purchased cybersecurity insurance to help you repair and clean up the damage.

    Understanding First Party Coverage VS Third Party Coverage

    To understand cybersecurity insurance, you need to know the difference between first-party coverage and third-party coverage. Let’s examine the two different types of coverage more in-depth. According to Insuropedia, this is how the two stack up:

    • First-Party Coverage: This insurance covers the assets of your business and can include protection from the following damages:
      • Cyber Exhortation: In such a scenario, a third party threatens to damage or release data if they are not given a ransom amount.
      • Customer Notification Expenses: In cases when the customer personal data is compromised, there is a legal or regulatory requirement to notify them about the privacy breach.
      • Reputational Damage: Breach of data results in loss of intellectual property or customers which cause reputational damage to the organization.
      • Theft Of Money Or Digital Assets: The theft in such a scenario can be of equipment or electronic theft.
      • Loss Or Damage: Loss of or damage to data or software programs which are the digital assets of an organization.
      • Downtime: Network downtime causing severe business interruption.
    • Third-Party Coverage: This insurance provides your business with protection from third-party related crimes.
      • Costs: Security and privacy breaches, and the investigation, defense costs and civil damages associated with the third-party.
      • Multi-Media Liability: It covers investigation costs, defense costs, and civil damages. Such cost and damages arise from defamation, breach of privacy. Negligence in the publication of information in electronic or print media is also covered in this.
      • Loss Of Third Party Data: This includes payment of compensation to customers for denial of access and the failure of software or systems.

    To boil it down into simple terms:

    “First-party coverage applies to direct costs for responding to a privacy breach or security failure, and third-party coverage applies when people sue or make claims against you, or regulators demand information from you.”

    What Are The Different Types Of Cyber Insurance?

    As I’ve already stated a few times in this article, cybersecurity insurance is still a rapidly changing industry. No two businesses are going to have the same needs when it comes to purchasing their insurance policies, so it is highly profitable to do your homework and really shop around before you dot any i’s or cross any t’s. Below is a list of the main types of cybersecurity insurance currently being offered in the industry:

    Final Thoughts

    Data breaches are now as certain as death and taxes. (Joy.) If a business is lacking cybersecurity measures, they are like sitting ducks for the plethora of online keyboard-wielding creeps. If you need a place to get started, here is an article detailing Point Of Sale Precautions Every Business Owner Should Take. 

    Once you’ve created and implemented a solid security plan, make sure you keep it up to date. Finally, as I hope this article has stressed, seriously consider taking out cybersecurity insurance. In the case of data breaches, it is far better if you are proactive rather than having to be solely reactive.

    I will leave you with this sobering statistic: After experiencing a cybersecurity attack, 60 percent of small businesses go out of business within six months.

    Don’t throw the time, effort, blood, sweat, and tears you’ve poured into your business into the trash because you didn’t prepare for what is increasingly becoming an inevitable threat.

    Elizabeth Cranston

    Elizabeth Cranston is a writer and native Oregonian who lives in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. She enjoys researching and getting to the bottom of questions relating to the Point of Sale industry.When not writing about and researching Point of Sale software, she can usually be found overindulging in Dutch Bro’s coffee, making others laugh, or listening to music.

    Elizabeth Cranston

    Elizabeth Cranston

    Elizabeth Cranston

    “”

    What Are Loyalty Programs And How Do They Work?

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    Customer Loyalty

    Were you aware that the average adult is enrolled in nine loyalty/rewards programs? (I’ve had many a polite staring match with clerks trying to push their store’s rewards program. Needless to say, I’m not at all surprised by this statistic.) Loyalty programs, in one form or another, have been around for many years. Though they’ve evolved through time, these systems have increasingly become a weapon for business owners to retain existing patrons.

    Technology is rapidly encroaching every area of our lives and rewards programs are no exception. The advent of cloud computing has revolutionized businesses’ ability to store big data. Electronic rewards programs benefit businesses owners as well as customers. Proprietors can utilize these systems to collect customer information, track sales, and keep an eye on their retention and churn rates. This article looks to examine what loyalty programs are, where loyalty programs got their start, and how they work. So, without further ado, let’s dive in.

    What Are Loyalty Programs?

    Loyalty programs are rewards programs put in place by the owners of an establishment to encourage customers to return. These programs are extremely popular in businesses where customers make frequent purchases. Every rewards program is unique to the company who implements it, but they operate on roughly the same premise: The more a customer shops at your establishment, the more rewards they receive, and the more incentive they have to come back and continue shopping at your place of business.

    Rewards programs typically require customers to hand over some form of personal information (name, address, etc.). In return, they are issued a unique membership card, number, or access code so they can receive their benefits. As was previously stated, modern electronic rewards programs specifically benefit business owners because they can mine a large portion of previously untapped customer data.

    How Do Loyalty Programs Work?

    There are a wide variety of loyalty program styles out there and each has its own unique advantages and disadvantages. Let’s go over a few of the main styles:

    • Cash Back Or Rebate Program: This type of rewards program is pretty self-explanatory: customers earn money back from their purchases. Once they reach a certain dollar amount or a certain time limit has been reached, they can redeem their rewards for cash. The rebate is usually based off of a percentage of the total purchases during the time period in question. This type of program is easy to understand but it lacks the element of instant gratification for your customers and it can also be expensive to implement.
    • Discount Program: This system offers a discount off the original price of any given item that can be applied to customers at the checkout counter. Discount programs are easy to understand and process but may give customers the impression that your regular prices are too high
    • .Frequency Programs: Many of the businesses that use this type of rewards program employ paper punch cards to keep track of their customers visits. (Buy 5 subs and the 6th is on us!) While these punch cards are low cost, they don’t track any customer information and are more open to fraud.
    • Points Programs: With these rewards programs, customers are given points, often in exchange for the amount they spend in your store. The point system is a great way to avoid discounting your merchandise, but you may need to find a way to remind your customers of their status in the rewards program.
    • Tier System: This sort of rewards program is great for keeping customers engaged on a consistent basis. To join the system, a customer must make a simple purchase. The more frequently a customer makes purchases and the cost of those purchases will determine the level of rewards they receive. This sort of program works really well for businesses with expensive merchandise.Different loyalty systems can be mixed and matched together to create your own unique loyalty program that works best for your specific business and customer needs.

    Final Thoughts

    Any business owner worth his or her salt will tell you that having loyal customers is vital to keeping a thriving business. Not only is retaining existing patrons about 5 to 25 times less expensive than acquiring new ones, repeat shoppers are known to spend up to 67% more when they visit your establishment. Implementing a solid loyalty program is not only an important way for you as a business owner to make sure that your customers keep returning, it is also an important metric for your churn rate. It is important to do your research before adopting any loyalty solutions for your company, but this day in age, adopting some sort of loyalty program is becoming more and more advantageous. A loyal customer is a customer you can count on returning to your business and spreading free advertisement about your brand by word of mouth. (One of the most effective forms of advertising, I might add.)

    Elizabeth Cranston

    Elizabeth Cranston is a writer and native Oregonian who lives in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. She enjoys researching and getting to the bottom of questions relating to the Point of Sale industry.When not writing about and researching Point of Sale software, she can usually be found overindulging in Dutch Bro’s coffee, making others laugh, or listening to music.

    Elizabeth Cranston

    Elizabeth Cranston

    Elizabeth Cranston

    “”

    How To Add Vendors In QuickBooks Pro

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    How to Add Vendors in QuickBooks Pro

    When you’re setting up your QuickBooks Pro software, it’s easy to remember to add customers (since that’s the bread and butter of your business), but it’s important not to forget about your vendors.

    We already explained one method adding vendors in How to Import Vendors Into QuickBooks Pro, but you can also add vendors manually.

    If you already read How To Add Customers In QuickBooks Pro, then this process is going to be a piece of cake. If not, don’t worry. We’ve broken everything down into 16 simple steps.

    Table of Contents

    Create A Vendor

    To add a vendor in QuickBooks Pro, begin by going to Vendors>Vendor Center>New Vendor…

    Vendor Information is divided into five sections: Address Info, Payment Settings, Tax Settings, Account Settings, and Additional Info. The only required field is Address Information, but we’ll go over the others as well.

    Step 1: Enter Vendor’s Name

    Type your vendor’s name.

    How to Add Vendors in QuickBooks Pro

    Step 2: Add An Opening Balance (Optional)

    You can add the opening balance you owe your vendors.

    How to Add Vendors in QuickBooks Pro

    If you add an opening balance, you’ll also need to select an “as of” date. You can click on the blue “How do I determine the opening balance?” link for more details.

    How to Add Vendors in QuickBooks Pro

    Add Address Information

    Step 3: Enter The Company Name

    Add your vendor’s company name.

    How to Add Vendors in QuickBooks Pro

    Step 4: Write Vendor’s Full Name

    Enter your vendor’s full name and title.

    How to Add Vendors in QuickBooks Pro

    Step 5: Add Vendor’s Job Title

    Fill in your vendor’s job title.

    How to Add Vendors in QuickBooks Pro

    Step 6: Record Vendor Details

    Use the drop-down menus to save eight fields of vendor details, including:

    • Main Phone
    • Home Phone
    • Work Phone
    • Mobile
    • Alt. Phone
    • Alt. Mobile
    • Main Email
    • CC Email
    • Alt. Email 1
    • Alt. Email 2
    • Website
    • LinkedIn
    • Facebook
    • Twitter
    • URL 1
    • URL 2
    • URL 3
    • URL 4
    • Skype ID
    • Other 1
    • Other 2
    • Other 3

    How to Add Vendors in QuickBooks Pro

    Step 7: Add A Billing Address

    Edit your vendor’s address information.

    How to Add Vendors in QuickBooks Pro

    Step 8: Add A Shipping Address

    If the vendor’s shipping address is the same as their billing address, click “Copy>>.” If not, fill in the proper shipping address now. Then click the blue “OK” button.

    How to Add Vendors in QuickBooks Pro

    Adjust Payment Settings

    Step 9: Add An Account Number

    Add an account number for your vendor (if applicable).

    How to Add Vendors in QuickBooks Pro

    Step 10: Select Default Payment Terms

    Select the proper default terms for this particular vendor. You can choose between:

    • 1% 10 Net 30
    • 2% 10 Net 30
    • Consignment
    • Dues on receipt
    • Net 15
    • Net 30
    • Net 60

    How to Add Vendors in QuickBooks Pro

    Step 11: Edit Print Settings

    Choose how you want your vendor’s name printed on checks (in our case, we chose the company name rather than the name of an individual at the company).

    How to Add Vendors in QuickBooks Pro

    Step 12: Set A Credit Limit

    You can set a credit limit if desired.

    How to Add Vendors in QuickBooks Pro

    Step 13: Set A Billing Rate Level

    Much like customer pricing levels, it’s possible to create billing rate levels in QuickBooks. You can add one now or click the blue question mark to learn more about this feature.

    How to Add Vendors in QuickBooks Pro

    Edit Tax Settings

    Step 14: Enter A Vendor Tax ID

    If applicable, enter a vendor tax ID. At this time, also mark whether the vendor is eligible for a 1099 tax form (1099’s are used for freelancers and independent contractors).

    How to Add Vendors in QuickBooks Pro

    Edit Account Settings

    Step 15: Attach Vendors Expenses To An Account

    Tell QuickBooks where you want vendor bill transactions to be recorded. Choose an expense account from the chart of accounts drop-down menu.

    How to Add Vendors in QuickBooks Pro

    Add Additional Info

    Step 16: Specify A Vendor Type

    Use the drop-down menu to note where this customer came from. You can choose:

    • Consultant
    • Service providers
    • Suppliers
    • Supplies
    • Tax agency

    How to Add Vendors in QuickBooks Pro

    Step 17: Create Custom Fields

    You can create a custom field for your vendor. Click the “Define Fields” button in the bottom right-hand corner of the screen. Then write a label for your custom field and select whether that custom field applies to contact, vendors, or employees.

    How to Add Vendors in QuickBooks Pro

    Step 18: Save The Vendor

    Finally, save your vendor by clicking the blue “OK” button on the bottom of the screen.

    How to Add Customers in QuickBooks Pro

    You can view your vendor list or go back to the Vendor Center to make sure the vendor saved correctly. Repeat this process as many times as needed until all of your vendors are successfully added to your QuickBooks account.

    If you have any troubleshooting issues, check out the QuickBooks Community or call QuickBooks directly. If you have any further questions, leave a comment below and we’ll do our best to help you.

    Chelsea Krause

    Chelsea Krause is a writer, avid reader, and researcher. In addition to loving writing, she became interested in accounting software because of her constant desire to learn something new and understand how things work. When she’s not working or daydreaming about her newest story, she can be found drinking obscene amounts of coffee, reading anything written by C.S. Lewis or Ray Bradbury, kayaking and hiking, or watching The X-Files with her husband.

    Chelsea Krause

    “”