Customizing QuickBooks Online Invoice Forms is tricky. The standard QuickBooks online invoice offers the ability to add 3 custom fields ( Big Gear > Company Settings > Sales). No other modification is available at this time. Alternatively, it is possible to create a form in Microsoft Word and import to QuickBooks Online as a template giving your company a unique style and offering the ability to add the content needed.

For those of you who are not superstars in Microsoft Word we have found that using excel and word together make the task a bit easier. But you still need the patience of Job to fine tune where the printing starts and stops on your newly created customized QuickBooks online invoice. Once the customizing QuickBooks Online invoice is complete, (which took us several hours of “fiddling around”) you are ready to roll.

There are several “to-dos” needed to getting started with customizing QuickBooks online invoice forms. Should you need assistance we offer support services to help you with this setup; call 800-216-0763 for more information.


Set up Custom Fields in QuickBooks Online

  1. Turn on custom form styles in your QuickBooks Online subscription. To set up, select the large gear in the upper right corner of your web browser ( hint: Chrome is the best browser for QuickBooks online) > Select QuickBooks Labs > Turn on Import Style. NOTE: Customizing is available only for invoices. It is not available for estimates or sales receipts at this time.
  2. Set up any custom fields for additional data that changes per invoice. QuickBooks Online offers up to three custom fields. To set up, select the large gear in the upper right corner of your web browser> Select Account and Sales Settings > Click the pencil (edit symbol) next to Sales forms content > turn on Custom fields, then save.  How to Turn on Invoice Custom Fields in QuickBooks OnlineWhile you are in sales settings be sure to turn on any of the following fields before you start customizing your forms to avoid issues with your newly created template.
    • Shipping
    • Service Date
    • Discount
    • Deposit
  3. Because there are only 3 custom fields available for use when customizing Quickbooks online invoice forms, you will want to incorporate into your template any data that is “static” (the same) on all invoices for example:
    • Terms and conditions
    • EIN numbers or other fixed identifiers

We found it easier to create our template with all our “static” information using Excel. We then took a screenshot of our excel form and saved as a JPEG. Finally, we imported the JPEG to Word as a ‘Watermark’.

How to Custom Format the Background of an Invoice in Word for QuickBooks Online

This avoids issues with embedded tables, merged cells and other techniques that may not play nice when importing into QuickBooks Online. If you plan on doing all your formatting in Word, then keep it simple. Use line spacing and add multiple tables to define where invoice data will print on your customized form.
Line spacing can be modified here in Word.

Line Spacing Button in Word

The next step to customizing QuickBooks Online Invoice forms will be adding the DATA fields in the body of the word document where you want the data to print. Add the field name and use the greater/ less than brackets < > before and after each field name. The field name does NOT have to match QuickBooks online field names exactly, you will be given an opportunity to MAP your names to the QuickBooks Online fields. Click here for a complete list of fields available for mapping. Some of the fields apply to editions not offered in the USA so if they look unfamiliar, don’t use them.


Tips when customizing QuickBooks Online invoice templates in Word

  1. Fonts:
    • There is a short list of standard fonts so stick with Times Roman, Helvetica, or Arial
    • Italic and Bold (font style) ARE recognized so feel free to format your field names in Word.
    • You can use
      • More than one of these fonts in your form
      • More than one style (ie: font sizes, or italic or bold fonts).
  2. Create your watermark (background) in a separate file in any software (word, excel, powerpoint, etc) and be sure to add all static text to this background (8.5 x 11 format). Create a PDF of your customized form. View your PDF in full-screen mode in adobe reader ( view menu > full-screen mode), now use a screenshot software to take a picture of your document and save it as a jpeg.  It is ready for import to your word Doc invoice template as a watermark
  3. Place your data fields where you want them to print but keep in mind it will surely need adjustment.  You can delete your imported template if it is not attached to any invoices. So jump right in and import your form to QuickBooks. Our first attempt took us 5 import tries before we had the spacing and location correct.
  4. To import your new customized QuickBooks online Invoice Template into QuickBooks Online:
    • Click on the large gear in the upper right corner
    • Select custom form styles
    • Click on the NEW STYLE button in the top right corner and choose import style
    • The next screen asks you to browse your computer and find the word doc file to import then click Next. This file must be smaller than 2 MB.How to Import Invoice Styles in QuickBooks Online
  5. After importing the template, test the template by creating an invoice.  To assign the custom form to the invoice click on customize and select your newly created template.
How to Assign a Custom Template to an Invoice for Customizing QuickBooks Online Invoice Forms