How to Import
Quickbooks IIF Files?
I'll walk you through the steps on how to import Quickbooks IIF files. The format and structure of the IIF file is the key. If you don't have the correct format, you can never get through the import Quickbooks process because of errors. That's why, you have to familiar yourself of this format.
There are two types of data that we can import. List (i.e. Customer list, vendor list, etc.) or transaction (invoice, check, etc.). How will the program know if you will be importing a list or a transaction? The file headers in an IIF file tell the program how to import the type of data that follows.
The file headers are in rows that begin with an exclamation point. The first column in the header must contain a keyword. The table below shows the list of keywords that you can use:
|!ACCNT||Details about your chart of accounts.|
|!CUST||A customer address or phone list.|
|!VEND||A vendor address or phone list.|
|!EMP||A list of employees.|
|!OTHERNAME||A list of names you'd like to add to QuickBooks Other Name list.|
|!CLASS||A list of general classifications you'd like to add to QuickBooks Class list.|
|!CTYPE||A list of customer classifications you'd like to add to QuickBooks Customer Type list.|
|!INVITEM||Details about the line items you use on sales and purchase forms.|
|!INVMEMO||Messages you'd like to add to QuickBooks Customer Message list.|
|!PAYMETH||A list of payment methods you'd like to add to QuickBooks Payment Method list.|
|!SHIPMETH||A list of shipping methods you'd like to add to QuickBooks Ship Via list.|
|!TERMS||A list of payment terms you'd like to add to QuickBooks Terms list.|
|!TIMEACT||Details about activities you timed with the QuickBooks Timer. Works with !TIMERHDR.|
|!TIMERHDR||QuickBooks Timer data.|
|!TODO||A list of upcoming "to do" tasks you want QuickBooks to remind you about.|
|!VTYPE||A list of vendor classifications you'd like to add to QuickBooks Vendor Type list.|
In a list import file, the file headers line is usually located in the first row. In the example below for a customer list, the file headers line starts with !CUST.
If you have downloaded the IIF Import Kit, you will find there the IIF Header Help folder that lists the column headings that you can use for each list type (i.e. Customer list, Vendor list, etc).
In a transaction import file, there are usually three file header lines that occupy the first, second, and third rows (row 1, 2, and 3 in the example below). The example below shows a check transaction in an IIF file. The file headers lines begin with !TRNS, !SPL, and !ENDTRNS. You can also download sample import Quickbooks IIF files here.
Once you have the correct format for your IIF file, the next step is to save it with .iif extension. If you are using Microsoft Excel to create the IIF, you can save it by going to File > Save As command then make sure that the Save As type is set to Text (Tab Delimited) then enter the .iif in the File name box as show below:
Now that you are familiar on how to format and save your IIF file. It's time to import Quickbooks IIF file we created. To import Quickbooks, follow the steps below:
- Open Quickbooks
- Navigate to File > Utilities > Import > IIF Files
- The Import window will appear. Select the IIF file that you saved.
- Click Open.
- Click OK when the message "Your data has been imported successfully"
And that's it! You just made your first import.
- Contain a single IIF file and a "read me" text file.
- Contain both transaction data and the associated list data (account, customer, item, etc.), which shows how you can combine different types of data in one IIF file.
- Can be used with the sample company file backup to practice how to import Quickbooks IIF files. Download the company file separately and restore it in QuickBooks.
|Bill payment by check||bill_payment.iif|
|Bill payment by credit card||bill_paymentcc.iif|
|Cash sales with tax1||cash_sales_with_tax.iif|
|Cash sales without tax||cash.iif|
|Check affecting an account||check.iif|
|Credit card refund||credit_card_refund.iif|
|Credit memo with sales tax charged||credit_memo_with_sales_tax.iif|
|Estimate with sales tax charged||estimate_with_sales_tax.iif|
|Invoice with sales tax1 charged||invoice_sales_tax_charged.iif|
|Invoice with sales tax and group items||groupitem_with_salestax.iif|
|Invoice with no sales tax (sales tax preference off)||invoice.iif|
|Invoice with no sales tax and group items||groupitem_without_salestax.iif|
|General journal entry||journal.iif|
|Sales tax payment||sales_tax_payment.iif|