Xero conversion to Quickbooks Premier/Pro/Mac/Online
[Xero conversion to Quickbooks]

XERO To QuickBooks

When converting a company file from Xero to QuickBooks Online, the first thing to decide is whether the historical transactions will be part of the new file and if so, how far back to go with them.


It is certainly convenient to have historical transactions in the file in case a question comes up, rather than having to search an archived record, scanned documents, or worse, paper records. However, including them also increases the cost and effort required to achieve the conversion. How much additional work and cost depends on many factors like the number and variety of transactions, number of accounts with cash transactions, tracking of inventory, payroll, and so on.


Only someone with experience in converting these kinds of transactions in a company file can advise about these issues. Unless the conversion is being done at the beginning of the fiscal year, there will undoubtedly be some transactions to convert from the Xero file to QBO software. Before converting, save a copy of the balance sheet and income statement reports (Xero’s and most of the accounting world’s name for the profit and loss report) for all dates, using both cash and accrual methods and also the detailed Accounts Receivable and Accounts Payable reports. These will be used to verify the conversion after completion.


Also, it is a good idea to lock the Xero file for dates before the conversion date so that no one makes changes after you begin. Convert the Xero Chart of Accounts. The first step in the conversion process is to get the chart of accounts (COA) set up in QBO to match the one in Xero. Some will find it easier to create accounts in QBO to match those in Xero, but there is an easier way.Export the COA from Xero by going to Settings>Chart of Accounts and then clicking on the “Export” button which will download a CSV (comma-separated value) file which can be opened with Excel or any spread sheet program for editing. The first three columns of the file correspond to the first three columns of the required format for importing to QBO, making it very convenient. Account numbers in Xero are three digits and no subaccounts are allowed, but one common way to group accounts under a heading account is to add digits after a hyphen, e.g. 620-01, 620-02, etc. 


Since subaccounts can’t currently be imported into QBO anyway, leave them that way, making it easier to make them subaccounts later in QBO. We recommend making NO changes to account numbers, to make transaction imports easier in subsequent steps. So, in the Xero COA file, delete all columns after the first three.Only four columns of information on accounts can be imported into QBO: Account Number, Account Name, Type, and Detail Type. Those are the proper headings that should appear in the first row of the import file, so make those changes. 


Account names can generally be left alone and will import just fine. Account Types largely match up as well, but it is helpful to sort the list by type and check the list against the possible account types in QBO and make any changes needed to match them up.

It is also helpful to add proper account detail types from QBO in the 4th column. It isn’t required, as QBO willlet you choose them from a dropdown list during import if you don’t, but choosing them from a dropdown for dozens or even hundreds of accounts can be very tedious. Save the changes to your Xero COA file and then import it to QBO. Any account numbers, account names, or account types/detail types that don’t match up will be shown in red so you can make changes to import them. 


Once the import is complete, you might be inclined to do some cleanup of the QBO COA at this point. Resist that urge! It should be done AFTER import of transactions. Import Customers and Vendors into QuickBooks OnlineNext, the customers and vendors have to be imported. This can be a lot of work when converting from Xero to QuickBooks. This is because there is no distinction between customers and vendors in Xero. They are all grouped together as contacts and can be both a customer and vendor simultaneously. For this reason, I recommend exporting them all as one and then separating them into vendor and customer lists yourself. They can be on both lists for importing, but the name will have to be altered in the list imported second or import will fail.


There is a lot more information in the exported Xero file than you can import into QBO. For example, the Xero file includes both postal and shipping addresses, but only one address can be imported to QBO. Some of it will also have to be altered as to format, such as combining four address lines into one, combining first and last names into one field, and more.Trying to cover all the potential changes needed and how to do them in Excel or another spreadsheet program is

beyond the scope of this article. The place to start is to download the proper format for import to QBO by choosing “Import Data” from the Gear Icon>Tools and then choosing the type of import you are doing. Under the field where you can enter the file name for import, click on the link to download a sample file.


We strongly recommend against using the open balance amounts in the import files. This only complicates things, as any open invoices and bills should be imported later and will create those balances.Import Products and Services into QuickBooks OnlineNext is importing products and services. This should be done, whether or not inventory is being tracked, if any items are listed on the “Inventory” page in Xero. Just like in QBO, items can be and are used in various types of transactions like invoices and bills and must be in place before they are imported. Like customers and vendors, the export file from Xero will need a lot of manipulation to match the format for import into QBO and that format can be found using the same steps as outlined above.


If inventory is being tracked, then the import list could also be very long and require a lot of work to prepare. And in this case, for those items with inventory in stock, make sure that the purchase cost and quantity on hand are correct. This will establish the inventory value in QBO, though one or more journal entries will be needed to offset the resulting opening balance entries when you are done.Also, be sure during the import process to make sure that the “Sell” and “Buy” check boxes are properly selected for each item and for inventory items that the “Track” check box is checked. All items also need to have the inventory, non-inventory, or service selected.

If there are a large number, then break them up into files of less than 1,000 transactions each. That is the limit for import of a file to the bank feeds. From there it is just a matter of properly classifying them and accepting them into their respective registers. This should be second nature to anyone who uses the bank feeds daily.Verify ResultsWith that step complete, the file should be complete. Before verifying, go to the Chart of Accounts and edit those accounts that were grouped together by hyphens and digits after them to be subaccounts of their header account. Then I recommend two steps to verify that the QBO file matches the Xero file. First, reconcile the bank accounts. Whether to do this in one big reconciliation or in smaller pieces is a personal choice. I usually do them one year at a time, but if problems show up then I break it down by month. This should be made much easier if the Xero file has been properly maintained with reconciliation reports saved every month for each bank account.

Once all is reconciled, then compare the balance sheet and profit and loss reports for all dates using accrual and cash methods in QBO with those you saved earlier from Xero. Also verify that the detailed AR and AP reports match. Assuming all that went well, then the conversion is complete. There are some special situations that are not covered here, as Xero has some other features not covered like tracking, which is an additional classification level similar to class tracking in QBO. Of course, there are a lot of QBO settings that will also need to be configured as they are for any new company file. Forms will need to be customized, any third-party apps connected, and bank feed connections set up. And users will need to be set up to access the file. Hopefully, this article will help those considering making the switch from Xero to QuickBooks to understand the issues and the difficulties. It is certainly possible to accomplish, if one has the necessary skills and patience to do it right.

Convert your Xero data to Quickbooks with 100% accuracy. All versions of Xero can be converted to Quickbooks Enterprise, Pro, Premier, or Quickbooks Online (QBO).

We offer an industry-standard Xero to Quickbooks Premier, Pro, Mac, or Quickbooks Online Editions:
  • 100% accurate data conversion with no issues
  • Guaranteed data migration of core accounting data
  • Quick turnaround: 2-3 days on weekdays
  • Weekend Expedited Conversion (submit data on Friday evening for Monday morning delivery)
What data is converted:
  • All Lists:
  • Chart of Accounts
  • Customers
  • Jobs
  • Vendors
  • Other Names
  • Employees
  • Items
  • Sales Tax
  • All Transactions: *(converted as journal entries)
  • Invoice (Customer)
  • Payment (Customers)
  • Bill (Vendor)
  • Bill Credit
  • Bill Payment (Vendor)
  • Credit Memo
  • Check
  • Deposit
  • Estimate
  • General Journal Entry
  • Item Receipt (Received for Bill)
  • Inventory Adjustment
  • Liability Adjustment
  • Paycheck
  • Payroll Liability Check
  • Purchase Order
  • Sales Order
  • Sales Receipt
  • Sales Tax Payment
  • Transfer of Fund
  • YTD Adjustment

Xero Datasets with multi-currency cannot be converted at this time

Maximum number of transactions

QuickBooks Premier/Pro can handle a maximum of 2 billion transactions. Quickbooks Enterprise can handle unlimited transactions. Typically, the maximum is limited more by your computer's hard disk space than by QuickBooks.

Maximum number of items in lists


Max Items
(Simple Start,
Pro, Premier)

Chart of accounts


Items, including inventory items

(Group items can contain only 20 individual items)


Job types


Vendor types


Customer types


Payroll items


Price levels




Total Accounts Receivable and Accounts Payable terms


Payment methods


Shipping methods


Customer messages


Memorized reports


Memorized transactions


To Do notes


Total names (employees, customers, vendors, and other names combined)


Sales reps


Sales tax codes





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Xero to Quickbooks Conversion

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