Turning Off the Online Payment Link in QuickBooks Invoices

| August 2, 2011 | 14 Comments

Although I love the Intuit PaymentNetwork for collecting customer payments, it doesn’t fit everyone’s needs. Unfortunately, QuickBooks has a tendency to try to force this on us, and I see a lot of complaints about that “pay online” tag that QuickBooks inserts into invoices. It seems like a good time to review how to turn this off since I’m still seeing complaints.

Here is a portion of an invoice printed with QuickBooks Premier 2011. Note the “pay online” link.

Pay Online Link in QuickBooks Invoice

You may also see it in the PDF copy of an invoice if you use QuickBooks to create the email. In this case, it shows in the footer of the template. Sometimes this can overlay or move other features in my invoice template.

QuickBooks emailed invoice

You also get an “advertisement” for this in the email message that is created.

Text in email message

One of the annoying features of this is that I didn’t ask them to put this in. It shows up this way when I create a new company, it shows up when I convert a company over from an older version. Very annoying. And, to make it worse, if I haven’t set up an account with Intuit PaymentNetwork, when my clients click on that link they get this information, which really makes me look bad…

IPN if I don't have an account

Now, keep in mind, I really like Intuit PaymentNetwork. I use it in my business when I can, it saves me a lot of money in merchant processing fees (only $0.50 per transaction). But, it is my opinion that I should have to decide that I want to use this, rather than have them insert what is essentially an advertisement in my invoices.

How Do I Turn It Off?

The simplest thing to do is to just un-check the show online payment link box in the lower left of your invoice.

QuickBooks Online Payment Link

However, that isn’t a permanent fix. Every new invoice will have that box checked. What you need to do is to change your preference settings.

Select Edit and then Preferences. Select the Payments preference and click on the Company Preferences tab. There are two boxes to make sure that you un-check in the bottom of the screen.

Intuit PaymentNetwork Preference

New invoices will not have the links, usually. In some cases, though, I’ve seen that the first invoice you create after making this change may still have the box checked. Watch that – uncheck it and future invoices should be OK.

Note that all existing invoices that you have will not be changed – if they were checked before, they will still be checked. So you should keep an eye on this.

In some revisions of QuickBooks you may also find that you have to do some repairs to your invoice templates (print form), if they were altered to add the links. There were some cases where the form was altered to make room, and disabling the preference didn’t set the templates back to the normal arrangement. That is unusual, though.

Again, I do like Intuit PaymentNetwork – I just object to having this feature enabled by default, particularly since the links may be asking my customer to call me back to set up an account.

Update 8/4/2011: The R7 (and R8) releases have changed one aspect of this – if you create a new company file, the “Show Payment Link” options are now turned OFF by default. This is a vast improvement. It should have been that way in the beginning. Thankfully Intuit has listened to the clamor over this issue.

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Category: Billing

About the Author (Author Profile)

Charlie Russell is the founder of CCRSoftware. He’s been involved with the small business software industry since the mid 70’s, focusing on inventory and accounting software for small businesses. Charlie is a Certified Advanced QuickBooks ProAdvisor. Look for Charlie’s articles in the Accountex Report blog, as well as his California Wildflower Hikes blog.

Comments (14)

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  1. Lisa Glover says:

    Thank you! Yes, this is frustrating for me as well as my customers who are trying to pay.

    Lisa Glover

  2. Thank you Charlie. This has been my complaint as well. None of my clients are in a position to use the Online Payment Link yet. I will help them get there and then turn it on.

  3. Hal Rosen says:

    I was notified of this by a client who tried to pay me and I wasn’t set up. I’m glad I was prompted to sign up as I really like the service and the fees are far less than credit cards.

    This is typical of how Intuit has failed to communicate in advance with the Pro Advisors. I’m currently on a committee with Intuit where they are looking to improve communications. Look for new announcements this month!

    • Charlie says:

      Yes, Hal, I do like the feature, and it serves me well. But it doesn’t work for everyone, and it shouldn’t be on by default.

      Good news – I missed this, but the R7 (and R8) releases change the behavior. When you create a new company file with these revisions, the Show Payment link preferences are turned OFF by default. I haven’t tested a conversion of a file from an older year of QB to 2011, but I would hope that the same holds true there.

      And, Hal, feel free to contact me if you have anything else you would like to discuss.

    • I have had a lot of issues, with intuit not following up with the ones who subscribe to the QB Pro Advisor Program, I have been in the program for over 14 years and use the POS as well with several clients. They just do not communicate with us, we are out there using and promoting the products, we use to get more updates, and pre-releases of products it was a perk of being on the program to know what was available to help us grow our businesses. Then they get on a rash of TV ads about how the client can do this without any assistance. Those are the clients I get and have to do tons of clean up and totally revamp their books and spend hours untangling a mess and wind up loosing money on their account, because it is costly to get a system where it is accurate and the cpa can use to do taxes off of. Not to mention the QB Pro Advisor member is paying to have the platform, so I get hit both ways. Intuit needs to have more of a connection with pro advisor member in working through them, to promote or operate the programs and needs to offer us, more ways to do workshops, basic in with basic bookkeeping teaching tools for the client. The Mac version is a whole other can of worms to work with and fix corrupt files, and find support, that is in the US, that can fix or service this software. So any insight into this would be very welcomed. I never have workshops by Intuit for QB Pro Advisors Members in my area, North Florida that I can go to, I went to one in Orlando in 2004 or 05, that has been the last one that was directed at the Pro Advisor Members. Whether you are certified or not if you have been on the program as many years as I have, they should allow you to advertise as a member to attract more clients, I have gotten certifications as a Certified Public Bookkeeper, renewals or ceu every year in Nursing, Insurance, so I do not have the time to sit and work on a cert for QB for every version. I have been doing accounting/bookkeeping setup of systems for over 20 plus years, and was on the beta testing of several softwares, including QB. I went back down to a one person office during the past 6 years due to the economic downturn, where everyone is trying to do their books own their own, what a mess. Now I am looking at doing remote books more, to cut down on travel time, expended to the client. QB online does not cut it here, all my clients like the reports that they get from the desktop, which I have heard from others using QBO does not have. I would prefer to just do a remote desktop version in a server environment.

      • Charlie says:

        Belinda, some notes on your comment:

        -Don’t worry about QuickBooks for Mac desktop, that product is going to be retired in just a few years. QB for Mac 2016 is the last version to be released.

        -I strongly suggest going to either Accountex USA or Scaling New Heights for education. If you focus on QB desktop, then Scaling New Heights is the conference to go to. Next one will be in Atlanta sometime next Spring.

        -Lots of options for remote access for QB desktop. The option that works best for you depends on the details of your work situation. I work with desktop clients in remote situations all the time.

        -QBO reports are different than what you get in the desktop. If you look to QBO as an online version of the desktop you will be disappointed, as they are totally different products. QBO works well for some kinds of businesses, and not others. You have to look at it with fresh eyes…

  4. Liz alexander says:

    Thanks for the update. What I’d like to do at times is to turn off the option to pay online via credit card buy still allow use of the IPN. I can’t seem to figure out which setting offers which service to customers. Any thoughts?

    • Charlie says:

      Liz, are you signed up for any other Intuit Payment Solutions program?

      In the “Payments” preferences, at the top, do you have an “on” setting by any of the “Intuit Payment Solutions” options?

  5. Cathy says:

    I have been trying to turn it off. You have to be in single user mode, and log in as admin. When I do that, I can uncheck the box, but this is only working under the admin login. When our other users log in, the box isn’t unchecked, and attempting to uncheck it, reminds you to log in as admin. Frustrating!

    • Charlie says:

      Cathy: What QB product/year of product are you using? And, is this a “hosted” solution, or installed locally on your computer? I’ve not seen this myself. Also – if you have QB locally, press F2 and tell us what “Revision” you are using…

  6. David says:

    Is it possible to change the payment link to point to a different online payment portal. We do not use the QB solution but we do have a payments page that our clients can use

    • Charlie says:

      Not this particular link. It is an Intuit feature, only.

      You can add your own text to the form, but it won’t be an active link.

      You can use some other service that will manage this kind of thing for you – take a look at Bill & Pay for example. Possibly Bill.com

  7. Jan and Janet says:

    Thank you so much for this information!! It was extremely helpful! We appreciate it.

  8. Mark says:

    Thank you! Great instructions, too!

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