QuickBooks Online - Subtotals and Discounts Frustration


QuickBooks Online - Subtotals and Discounts Frustration

One issue that really has me frustrated is how QuickBooks Online (QBO) treats discounts and subtotals when compared to QuickBooks Desktop (QBD), or really any accounting software I have found.

The first issue is how discounts are applied.  This is discussed in a previous article, but the main point is instead of percentages, you have to use what seems like a "quick and dirty" fix of using a negative decimal for a discount percentage.

And that leads us to what appears to be an unintended consequence of this... how subtotals, especially subtotal groups that follow a discount (or discount group).  Let's take a look:

Product Description Qty Rate Amount
ItemA Item A 1 50 50
ItemB Item B 50


  Subtotal     100
  Discount 100 -0.10 -10
ItemA Item A  50 50
ItemB Item B 1 50 50
  Subtotal     90

A quick looks appears to be ok, but if we look at the second subtotal it's obvious that it's including the 10 discount from the previous subtotal group.  I've never seen accounting software be this "basic" and not treat the second subtotal group as it's own, ignoring any previous subtotals and/or discounts.

So, if you were to issue a discount for the second group you would need to make sure you entered "100" for the Qty and not "90", which is what it says the subtotal is.  To me, this is completely ridiculous.  I doubt there will ever be a fix because when I actually got to speak to someone (in a chat and sharing my QBO session) they were saying that the subtotal IS correct.  Well, maybe mathematically going down the column it is, but in the accounting world I am betting that this would be a big issue for most.  If not, I am happy to hear arguments as to why not.

What I would like is not a change in how it works, but a setting that says "include discounts in subsequent subtotals" or not.  It can be turned on by default so the behavior is the how it is now, but for those of us that have for years expected discounts are NOT included in any following subtotals, that would be great.

The only other way I've found to stop this from happening is putting another subtotal line after the first discount.  That seems to fix it, but again, it looks weird to myself and the customer as well.

I guess what I am asking is that if Inuit is forcing us to QBO, at least make if function like QBD did.


UPDATE (10/8/2023):

Well, Intuit solved this problem by removing subtotals altogether in their "new improved invoices"!  *slow clap*


Last edited 10/08/2023 at 10:32:53


Copyright 1983-2024 BVSTools
GreenBoard(v3) Powered by the eRPG SDK, MAILTOOL Plus!, GreenTools for Google Apps, jQuery, jQuery UI, BlockUI, CKEditor and running on the IBM i (AKA AS/400, iSeries, System i).