QuickBooks accounting software is offered as QuickBooks Desktop (QBD) or QuickBooks Online. Both variants import the QBO format as a common format, and each of them imports its set of formats. The QBO format applies to bank files and credit card files. See below options and Desktop and Online versions.
Import bank transactions and credit card transactions into Intuit QuickBooks 2020-2023 and Quickbooks Online through the QBO format or the IIF format (all QuickBooks Desktop versions are supported). QBO and IIF formats are different: QBO (Web Connect) is to import bank transactions, and IIF is more ‘low level’ import allowing to create of various transactions between QuickBooks accounts. Both formats have limitations – read below to choose the most suitable format for you.
Intuit QuickBooks 2020-2023 for desktop, Windows, or Mac, imports QBO (Web Connect), IIF, and QBJ formats
Quickbooks desktop all versions import the IIF format
Quickbooks Online imports QBO, CSV, OFX, QFX formats
Intuit QuickBooks 2013-2023 imports QBJ (General Journal Entry files), created by your accountant or by the General Journal Entries app
The QBO format is a QuickBooks Web Connect format used to import transactions into QuickBooks. ".QBO" does not mean "QuickBooks Online".
QuickBooks Desktop (PC or Mac) imports QBO files through File-Utilities-Import-Web Connect format.
QuickBooks Online imports QBO files as well and the QBO format is the best format it imports. QuickBooks Online also imports OFX and QFX files (also a good choice to import). OFX and QFX formats are not importable by QuickBooks desktop. Quickbooks Online (including Quickbooks Self-Employed) imports CSV files.
QuickBooks desktop imports QBO (Web Connect) files into the Bank Feeds Center. Once the transactions are imported, you review them and match them to vendor records and assign expense/income account. After that, the transactions are added to the register.
QuickBooks Desktop has to be not older than three years to import .QBO files. For this moment, you need to have Intuit QuickBooks 2020-2023 to import QBO files.
The videos below show how to convert a transaction file to QBO format, using the Bank2QBO converter.
IIF format is the format to use for all QuickBooks versions. It allows supplying more details about transactions like expense/income account or class. Unlike the QBO format, which requires "matching" under the Bank Feeds after QBO import, the IIF format requires vendor names, account names to be exact to what you have in Quickbooks otherwise Quickbooks will create new vendor and account records during IIF import.
Quickbooks Online does not import IIF files.
QBO import requires an Internet connection with QuickBooks allowed to access the Internet, IIF import is completely offline
QBO import allows to apply renaming rules to assign payee or vendor even if it is different on supplied QBO file from the record in QuickBooks, and assign the expense account during import. IIF must have expense accounts supplied as you have them in QuickBooks. Bank2IIF allows to do that through the category column or provide a default expense account.
Imported QBO transactions go first into the Online Banking Center, where you can review, delete, match and finally include them into the register. QuickBooks provides two Online Banking Center modes, completely be their user interface and actually how transactions are imported. IIF import is done directly into the QuickBooks transaction register.
QBO import requires QuickBooks to be no older than three years. IIF keeps importing without asking you to upgrade.
QuickBooks Online imports QBO files only, QuickBooks Online does not import IIF files.
The video below shows how to convert a CSV file from your bank or credit card statement to IIF format and import it into Quickbooks, using a CSV2IIF converter.
The QBJ format is the latest format supported by Quickbooks to create General Journal Entries. Quickbooks accountant edition allows your accountant to create general journal entries for you, export them as IIF files, send them to you and import them into your Quickbooks.
The QBJ format is for General Journal Entries. QBO and IIF files are for transactions.
The QBJ files can have one or more general journal entries.
Each entry is for a specific date
Entry lines belonging to the same entry have the same date
Each entry line is either debit or credit
Each entry balances within itself (total debit amount equals total credit amount for all lines)
Details from the Chart of Accounts (account name and account number and parent account details as well) are required to complete the conversion
General Journal Entries creates general journal entries in Excel and then converts to QBJ (and to IIF as well) and import them into Quickbooks. Working in Excel with general journal entries is faster than directly in Quickbooks. In addition, importing QBJ files creates the audit record in your Quickbooks, so you can review easily created entries.
The videos below show how to convert CSV/Excel General Journal Entries to QBJ and import them into Quickbooks, using the CSV2QBJ converter (replaced by the General Journal Entries app now).
QuickBooks Desktop imports QBO, IIF, QBJ files. If your QuickBooks version is older than three years, use the IIF format. If you have QuickBooks 2013 or later, you may also use the QBJ format. QuickBooks Online imports QBO, QFX, OFX, CSV (limited) files.
Your QuickBooks version must not be older than three years to import QBO files. QBO (Web Connect) files are imported under Bank Feeds in QuickBooks where they are matched to vendor records and assigned expense/income accounts. QBO files do not carry expense/income accounts (categories) as the categorization is done after import in QuickBooks.
The IIF format is considered a "low level" or "system" format and QuickBooks imports it right into its database, so you have to be precise with the data you provide. Typos and mismatches will result in new vendor records and accounts created. Always do a backup (as with any other import) for the QuickBooks company file before any IIF import. Putting aside the scary part, this is a great format widely used and you can import data quickly. If you just figuring out QuickBooks, start with the QBO format (see above).
CSV files must have exact vendor names and category (expense/income) account names matching account names in QuickBooks. All QuickBooks versions are supported as long as they import IIF files (except QuickBooks Online). For QuickBooks Enterprise the user must have exclusive access to import IIF files.
The QBJ is a general journal entry format. This converter is different from other converters. You have to use the special Excel template and provide all account details.
QuickBooks Online imports QBO, QFX, OFX, CSV files. Categorization is done after import in QuickBooks Online. CSV files have limited support and have to follow the expected layout. Use converters below to create importable CSV/QBO files from your Excel/PDF files.
Convert CSV/Excel/TXT/PDF/QIF/OFX/QFX/QBO files to the QBO (Web Connect) format: Bank2QBO (QBO is good for both QuickBooks Desktop and QuickBooks Online)
Convert CSV/Excel/TXT/PDF/QIF/OFX/QFX/QBO files to an importable CSV format: Bank2CSV with the CSV target set as QB Online
If you have an Excel or CSV file with transactions from your bank (checking, savings or credit line) account, or credit card statement and need to import it into Intuit QuickBooks 2020-2023, the best would be to convert it to a QBO (Web Connect) file.
Use Bank2QBO as your one-stop solution for all your Excel, CSV or TXT or PDF, or QIF, QFX, OFX, QBO files to convert to the QBO format ready to import into Intuit QuickBooks 2020-2023.
QBO format provides advantages for a bookkeeper or an accountant in QuickBooks:
Imported QBO files are stored separately under Bank Feeds and QuickBooks provides an interface to review imported transactions, match to vendor records, assign Expense/Income accounts and add to the register.
Unwanted, duplicate, or incorrectly converted transactions can be easily ignored under the Bank Feeds as well
When matched to a vendor record, QuickBooks remembers your choice for the next QBO import
Expense/Income account is assigned to a Vendor/Customer record is used to prefill account for the matched transaction
Bank2QBO provides a feature to paste table data copied from Excel or other spreadsheet software directly into the application without the need to save the CSV/Excel file.
A short video (7 min) on how to convert a CSV file to QBO format and import it into QuickBooks:
To import a PDF file to QuickBooks, use Bank2QBO that converts PDF and other formats like QIF, QFX, OFX, QBO, CSV, XLSX, XLS, TXT. Bank2QBO reads your PDF bank or credit card statement, finds transactions there, shows them for your review, and creates a QBO (Web Connect) file ready to import into QuickBooks Desktop or QuickBooks Online.
QuickBooks desktop has to be not older than three years old to import QBO (Web Connect) files. For the current year, Intuit QuickBooks 2020-2023 import QBO files. Older QuickBooks import IIF files only. You can use Bank2IIF to convert PDF files to IIF and import them as IIF.
PDF files have to be text-based (you can select text when you open a PDF file in a PDF viewer or browser. Bank2QBO reads PDF files, finds transactions there and converts them to a QBO file.
Bank2QBO cleans the description to be used for the payee and keeps the full description as a bank memo.
QBO files are Web Connect files and they are imported in QuickBooks under the Bank Feeds Center. Under the Bank Feeds center, once imported, transactions are matched to vendor records and assigned expense/income accounts and then added to the register.
Do not use QIF files to import from PayPal - use CSV files.
QBO files do not support splits, but Bank2QBO can create separate transactions for splits.
Bank2QBO understands your PayPal CSV export and maps splits automatically.
Use Bank2IIF to convert CSV PayPal files to IIF files with splits. Bank2IIF maps PayPal splits automatically.