Online banking rules go beyond the automatic memorizing and categorizing that QuickBooks Online does. For frequently downloaded items, rules can save you a lot of time by scanning bank items for certain details you assign for specific payees and categories.

Create a bank rule

  1. From the left menu, select Banking then Bank Rules.
  2. Select New Rule in the upper right.
  3. Complete the following:
    • Rule name
    • For: From the drop-down, choose Money in or Money out.
    • In: From the drop-down, choose the bank or credit card account.
    • Set the rule conditions. You can add up to 5 lines.
    • Set Transaction type, Payee, and Category.
  4. Select Save.


  • Rules apply to unaccepted transactions only (transactions in the For Review tab on the Banking screen).
  • To reduce the need for multiple rules, you can create rules with Or so that transactions are edited when they meet any of the outlined conditions. In order for the Or function to be available, you must change the drop-down so that it shows When a transaction meets ANY of these conditions.

Import Bank rules

If you have banking rules on another QuickBooks Online company file, you can save time by exporting then importing it to your current company file.

  1. Sign in to the company file that has the bank rules:
    1. From the left menu, select Banking then Bank Rules.
    2. Select the New Rule drop-down arrow and choose Export Rules. Note that there must be rules set up to see the option.
    3. Save the file in Excel.
  2. Switch to the company you want to import the rules to.
    1. From the left menu, select Banking then Bank Rules.
    2. Select the New Rule drop-down arrow and choose Import Rules.
    3. Select Browse to upload the Excel file.
    4. Select the rules and details you want to import.

Default accounts

Default accounts are used when it is unclear how a transaction should be categorized. The purpose of banking rules is to accurately categorize transactions; and since these accounts do not accurately depict the category they are ignored by Banking Rules.

The following default accounts should not be used in creating a banking rule.

  • Uncategorized Income
  • Uncategorized Expense
  • Uncategorized Asset

Note: Bank rules will also ignore these accounts if they have been renamed.

Recognized transactions

You can now see when transactions in the banking menu have been recognized by the system. Green indicators will show that QuickBooks Online has recognized the transactions because of rules, matching, or auto-recall. You can add transactions from the Recognized tab or select on the line of the transaction to edit before adding it.

Bank rules

Automatically add to my books

You can also create targeted rules so transactions are automatically accepted into your books from the Banking page.

To do this, put a check mark on the Automatically add to my books box at the bottom of the Rules screen and then select Save.

How it works:

  • After creating the auto-add rule, any affected transactions in the For Review tab are automatically added.
  • Auto-add Rules run when the user:
    • logs in
    • performs manual update
    • performs file upload
    • creates/modifies a new auto-add rule

In most cases, a message will show how many transactions were automatically added in most cases.

Important: If you are not an expert or experienced user of Banking Rules, it is best to start with this feature using easy and reliable transactions. For, example Gas Expenses below $100.

Uploading a Webconnect file to an account with Automatically add to my books set will see the following warning: Uploading this file may cause duplicate transactions to appear at some time in these account(s): <your bank account>. If you continue, the account(s) will be set to No Automation. Are you sure you want to continue?

This message means that the automation is turned off so you will need to manually add the transactions that you've uploaded.