Building QuickBooks Custom Reports & Dashboards Simplified

Sanchit Agarwal • Last Modified: December 29th, 2022


Whether you are a small business or a large enterprise, Data Associated with customer details, order details, transactions associated with employees, marketing and advertising expenses, etc. is generated every day. Accounting for all this Data is a vital part to keep in check the cash flow and ensure profits for your business. All this information is compiled to create reports to gain proper insight into the company’s finances and make strategic decisions.

QuickBooks, Accounting Software, helps you automate all your bookkeeping so that you can easily track your revenue and expenses. QuickBooks Reports provide you with visual insight into your Sales, Expenses, Profit, and Loss, etc.

Its user-friendly Dashboard gives you a brief overview of their business activities which is highly informative for day-to-day processing. Apart from the standard reports, QuickBooks Custom Reports provide a vast variety of options to customize your Financial Reports that suit your business needs.

In this article, you will learn about setting up QuickBooks Custom Reports and Dashboards.

Table of Contents

Understanding QuickBooks

Quickbooks Logo
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QuickBooks is an easy-to-use Accounting Software focusing on small businesses and medium-sized enterprises. It provides an On-premise QuickBooks Desktop version as well as a Cloud-based service known as QuickBooks Online which you can access through a secure network. To use this application, you don’t require any prior Accounting knowledge as QuickBooks does all of it for you.

Aside from being an application, it acts as a Robust Database and can be scaled to store Data according to your growing business needs. Ease of Integration with other applications helps you sync your data across all teams in your organization.

Some of the key features that makes it so popular among small businesses are:

  • Remote Access: Through QuickBooks Online you can enjoy its Cloud Accounting feature and manage your business anytime, anywhere, and from any device.
  • Online Banking: On connecting your Bank Account with QuickBooks Online, it automatically downloads the transactions from the bank and categorizes them. You don’t have to worry about any manual Data entry error as it enters all the daily data for you.
  • Accounting Reports: Keeping up-to-date with business progress is ever so easy now from the vast variety of Standard Reports and Dashboards. Also, QuickBooks Custom Reports provides you with Data Insights according to your needs. 
  • Multiple Users: You can allow different permissions for your employees to access QuickBooks Online. This increases collaboration between various teams in your enterprise. With this access, users can generate QuickBooks Custom Reports for their respective departments.
  • Invoicing: Generate Custom Invoices and Bills. It also allows keeping track of the timely payment of the bills.
  • Cash Flow Management: You can schedule timely payments to vendors and keep in check the incoming revenue with outgoing payments.
  • Support: With Free unlimited support, all your queries are handled by QuickBooks Professionals.

To know more about QuickBooks, click here.

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  • QuickBooks Online Account.
  • Working knowledge of QuickBooks.

Customizing Dashboards in QuickBooks Online

The first page that you interact with after logging into your QuickBooks Online account is the Dashboard. If you are a new user, then that page will be empty and will start displaying the content once you start your transactions.

The Dashboard has two main tabs:-

A) Get Things Done Tab

This tab helps you with three services:

  • Setup Guide: This helps you get started with your QuickBooks Online Account and setup up your basic company activities for this application.
  • Shortcuts: It is a handy section that has all your favourite features to quickly Add a customer, send an invoice, pay a bill, and many more.
  • Bank Accounts: This appears on the right side and displays the balance for current Bank Accounts connected to your QuickBooks Account.
Get Things Done Tab
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B) Business Overview Tab

This keeps you aware of your business performance by displaying you metrics such as Sales, Invoices, Profit & Loss, Expenses, etc. You can change the duration for these parameters by selecting the drop-down menu on the top right corner of each parameter tab.

Details about different Bank Accounts are also displayed on the right side of the Dashboard. You can reorder them by clicking on the ‘Pencil’ icon. You can also use the links to Connect Accounts, Go to Records, or Go to Performance Center for easier access.

Quickbooks Business View Dashboard
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Apart from Business View, which helps you track your daily progress, Accountant View is also available. This view is what you would be seeing if you have been using QuickBooks Online for a while.

To switch Views, on the top right corner, Navigate to Settings ⚙ > Switch to Business View or Switch to Accountant View.

Quickbooks Accountant View Dashboard
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Now that you have learned how to customize Dashboards, next will see how to create QuickBooks Custom Reports.

Building QuickBooks Custom Reports

Financial Report is of great importance to any business as it helps them understand the cash flow as well the performance of the company. QuickBooks Custom Reports are highly organized and structured which provides meaningful business insights from Raw Data. Everyone has different business needs and hence you may also want to customize your reports to see what matters to you the most.

Let’s check how to create Custom Reports in the following easy steps:

  • Go to Reports on the left-hand menu.
  • Select the Report of your choice.
  • On the top right corner, click on the Customize button.

Now, a Customization Window will appear with different sections. This will have different filters to customize your report, with some filters available for particular reports only.

To create QuickBooks Custom Reports we will go through the following Sections in the Customization Window:

A) General Settings Section

Here you can select the period for which the report should display the Data. You can standardize your Data by selecting the Number format. You get to choose from two Accounting Methods i.e Cash and Accrual.

Quickbooks Custom Reports General Settings
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B) Rows/Columns Section

This section lets you choose how the Data appears in the columns and rows. For example, for Profit Loss Reports from January to March, go to the Rows/Columns settings, and in the Columns box, choose Months as your parameter. These QuickBooks Custom Reports will display Profit or Loss amounts for January, February, and March in separate columns.

Quickbooks Custom Reports Rows/Columns Section
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You can also compare your Profit & Loss Data with previous periods, previous year, year to date, or even add columns displaying percentages. This can be helpful if you are in the E-Commerce business and want to check how much % of Sales you spend on utilities and rents.

To do this, Navigate to Rows/Columns > Change Columns and select the desired parameter.

Change Columns Drop Down Menu
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C) Filter Section

This helps you filter which customers, vendors, accounts, or products you want to target in the report. For example, for a Monthly Design Sales Report for all Accounts and Customers, you can Create QuickBooks Custom Reports by the following steps:

  • Click the Filter option.
  • Go to Lists and choose “Design” for the Products/Services.
Quickbooks Custom Reports Filter Section
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D) Header/Footer Section

Now that you have set up your QuickBooks Custom Report, in this section, you can set Report Title, Company Name, Date and Time of report preparation, etc. And once you are done with this section, click on “Run Report” to generate your QuickBooks Custom Reports.

Quickbooks Custom Reports Header/Footer Section
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E) Saving Custom Reports

Once you are done with all the filters, do remember to save the QuickBooks Custom Reports so that you can run them in the future when needed.

You can do this by :

  • Click on the “Save Customization” button on the top right corner next to Customize Button.
  • Give a Name to your report and click Save.
Save Customization Box
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F) Exporting Reports to Excel

For some cases, you may find that all required columns are not available in a single report. You can add different columns from other reports by exporting your QuickBooks Custom Reports to Microsoft Excel and then do the addition manually. Once you have run the report, as shown in the Green Box, Click the Export icon and select Export to Excel.

Export to Excel Option
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For more information on QuickBooks Custom Reports click here.

Limitations of QuickBooks Custom Reports and Dashboards

QuickBooks is a highly efficient tool when it comes to Custom Invoices, Cloud Accounting, and Accounting Reports. But while Creating QuickBooks Custom Reports and Dashboards, there are some challenges that you may face:

  • There is no option to build a QuickBooks Custom Report from Scratch. You only have the standard reports available which you can customize in QuickBooks to a limit.
  • In many cases, you might want to add columns from other reports. Currently, there is no such option and you have to export the reports to Microsoft Excel and manually customize them.
  • The dashboard has limited capabilities in terms of customization.


In this article, you learned how to create QuickBooks Custom Reports and Dashboards. QuickBooks provides an elegant solution to automate Accounting for small businesses and help them grow. The ease of use and customization of the standard reports proved to be quite useful as it helps in getting an overview of the company’s progress.

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Share with us your experience in Creating QuickBooks Custom Reports and Dashboards. Let us know in the comments section below!

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