This article is part of a larger series on Accounting Software.
In this tutorial, you’ll learn how to set up or change your company information within QuickBooks Online. We’ll discuss the various physical and email addresses that QuickBooks allows and the unique purpose of each address. You’ll also enter your information to be printed on tax forms, such as Form 1099 and payroll tax returns.
QuickBooks Online is our top overall pick for the best small business accounting software. We encourage you to follow along with this tutorial in your own copy of QuickBooks Online. If you don’t already have a subscription, new users can choose between a 30-day free trial and 50% off for three months.
This is the first tutorial in our Free QuickBooks Tutorial Series. It can be completed by either watching the video below or checking out the screenshots and animated GIFs below at your own pace.
QuickBooks Online Company Dashboard
Since this is the beginning of your QuickBooks training, let’s start by looking at the layout of QuickBooks Online. The first time you open QuickBooks Online, you’ll be taken to your company dashboard. The QuickBooks Online dashboard has two tabs: Gettings Things Done and Business Overview.
- Getting Things Done: This provides quick access to setup options and shortcuts to creating transactions, like adding a customer, estimate, and invoice.
- Business Overview: This offers key information about your company’s financial performance, including reports on profit and loss and expenses.
Tip: Most QuickBooks Online users are used to seeing the Business Overview tab first. As of this writing, there’s no option to hide the Getting Things Done tab. You might want to submit a suggestion to QuickBooks Online to move Getting Things Done to the second tab so that you don’t have to select Business Overview every time you log in.
Getting to Know the QuickBooks Online Dashboard
Below are some of the most frequently used parts of your QuickBooks Online company dashboard.
- Gear icon: Click on this in the upper right corner to enter or change your company information and settings. It is where most of our work will be through the first eight tutorials of the tutorial.
- New button: The + New button in the upper left corner is the best place to start entering new transactions, like expenses, invoices, bills, payments received, and bills paid.
- Left menu: This bar provides pop-out menus to view past transactions or account balances for the various areas of your accounting system. While you can also initiate most transactions from the left menu bar, it’s generally much easier to click on the + New button.
Step 1: Gather Company Info & Sign In To QuickBooks
Before we begin setting up your company in QuickBooks Online, compile basic company information. It’s best to have as many items from this checklist as possible, but you can always make changes later.
- Business name
- Digital copy of your company logo
- Federal employer identification number (EIN)
- Business structure, such as sole proprietor or partnership
- Accounting method (cash or accrual)
Now that you have your information, log in to your QuickBooks account; you’ll see your company’s dashboard. Click the gear icon and choose Account and Settings. Then, select the Company tab under Account and Settings.
Step 2: Edit the Company Name
Click on the pencil icon or anywhere on the company name section to edit the information. After making the changes, click Save.
The company name section includes three items:
A. Company logo: Import your company logo to include it on customized forms. Your logo must be saved as an image file on your computer. Follow these steps to import your logo into QuickBooks Online:
Step 2.1: Click on the gray square to the right of Company logo.
Step 2.2: The next screen will display the logos you previously uploaded to QuickBooks Online. If your logo is already there, select it to add it to your company information. If the logo you want isn’t shown, click the blue plus sign.
Step 2.3: QuickBooks provides a window to browse your computer and select the image file of your logo. After selecting the image file, click Open to return to the prior screen where a thumbnail of your new logo appears. The logo is then stored in your QuickBooks Online account and will be available for the customization of forms without having to reload it.
Step 2.4: Make sure the logo you want to add is highlighted, then click Save.
Choose from uploaded logos or upload a new logo for your QuickBooks Online company
B. Company and legal name: Enter your company name as you would like it to appear on your invoices and other forms. Your legal company name should match the name the IRS has for your company. The legal name will appear on tax forms, such as Form 1099, and payroll tax returns. If your legal name is different from the company name you want on your invoices, uncheck the box and input the legal name.
C. EIN: This should match the number assigned to you by the IRS. If you’re self-employed, you may use your Social Security number. Because of the sensitive nature of EINs, QuickBooks may require you to authenticate your login before viewing or changing the EIN.
Avoid using your Social Security number. While self-employed taxpayers are allowed to use their Social Security number instead of an EIN, we highly recommend applying for an EIN. If you don’t have one, you’ll be forced to disclose your Social Security number to vendors and employees who receive tax forms from you, such as Form 1099 and Form W-2.
Click the green Save button when you’re finished entering your company name, logo, and EIN.
Step 3: Select the Company Type
Click the pencil icon or anywhere on the Company Type section to enter or change your company type information. Click on the drop-down menu next to the Tax form field and select your taxable entity type.
- Sole proprietor: You’re a sole proprietor if you’re the only one who runs your business. To report income or loss, you should use Schedule C (Form 1040).
- Partnership: Select this business type if you’re carrying out your business with two or more partners. Partnerships user Form 1065 to report their business income and loss.
- S corporation (S-corp): A corporation that elects to be an S-corp passes corporate income, loss, and taxes through to its shareholders and reports on Form 1120S.
- C corporation (C-corp): A corporation that qualifies as a C-corp is taxed separately from its owners, rather than passing through to owners. C-corps report on Form 1120.
- Nonprofit organization: Nonprofits are tax-exempt corporations that are focused on social causes rather than generating income. They use Form 990 to report their annual activity.
- Limited liability company (LLC): Choose this business type if you’re unsure whether to file taxes as a sole proprietor, partnership, or S-corp.
You can leave the field blank if you’re unsure.
Start typing your industry name in the Industry field, and QuickBooks will provide suggestions. You must choose an industry from the QuickBooks list or leave it blank. Click the green Save button when you’re finished.
Step 4: Update Your Contact Info
Click on the pencil icon or anywhere in the Contact info section to provide contact information for both QuickBooks and your customers.
A. Email: Your company email is the address QuickBooks will use to contact the QuickBooks administrator. The customer-facing email address will appear on sales forms sent to your customers, such as invoices. If this is different from the QuickBooks administrator’s email address, then uncheck the box and input the correct address.
B. Company phone: Enter the phone number that should appear on the sales forms sent to customers.
C. Website: Enter a website address to appear on all your sales forms.
Click the green Save button when you’re done and ready to start entering your company’s address information.
Step 5: Edit Your Company Address
Click on the pencil icon or anywhere in the address section to enter or change your company’s address information. In the newest QuickBooks Online version, the company address, customer-facing address, and legal address appear in separate sections.
- Company address: The company address is the physical location of the business and is used for your payments to QuickBooks. After making the changes, click Save.
- Customer-facing address: This address appears on your invoices and other sales forms and should be the address to which you want customers to mail their payments. If it’s different from your company address, uncheck the box and enter the correct customer-facing address. Click Save to record changes.
- Legal address: The legal address is used for your tax filings and should match your address on file with the IRS. Again, if this is different from the company address, you must uncheck the box and input the legal address. When you’re satisfied with the address you have entered, click the green Save button.
Step 6 (Optional): Set Up Communications With Intuit
The final section allows you to set your marketing preferences with Intuit, the owner of QuickBooks. If you click Marketing Preferences, you’ll be taken to Intuit’s website, where you’re asked a series of questions regarding the ways Intuit can contact you. By completing the survey, you can opt out of all mail, phone calls, and emails from Intuit.
Congratulations on finishing your first tutorial in the free Fit Small Business QuickBooks Online Training Course! The next tutorial is How to Customize the Look and Feel of Invoices, Sales Receipts, and Estimates. In that tutorial, we walk you through how to customize the style and appearance of your invoices to give them a more professional look.