Do you need to calculate sales commissions using QuickBooks Desktop? One key benefit of using QuickBooks for sales commission calculations is that accounting data is often more accurate than CRM data. Indeed, QuickBooks tracks actual invoices and payments (not just opportunities), making it an ideal data source for companies looking to accurately calculate commissions.

Sales Cookie can calculate sales commissions from QuickBooks Desktop data (including the Pro and Enterprise editions). Synchronizing data with QuickBooks takes a few minutes to configure. Each sales representative gets an online incentive dashboard which they can use to check credits, verify payouts, and more. Reps can connect from a computer, or from a mobile device.

Using Sales Cookie allows you to leverage our crediting and calculation engine. As a result, your reps are paid the right commissions, on time. It’s also easy to make changes to your incentive plans or to generate reports. Complex types of sales commissions – such as incentive plans with splits, draws, or formulas – are supported. Here are the steps to follow:

  • Verify QuickBooks Desktop readiness
  • Register for a free Sales Cookie account
  • Add a connection to QuickBooks Desktop
  • Add users & transactions from QuickBooks Desktop
  • Create sales incentive plans
  • Run commission calculations
  • View incentive dashboards
  • Generate commission reports

Note: Sales Cookie also supports QuickBooks Online. In fact, establishing a connection with QuickBooks Online is even easier than using QuickBooks Desktop!

Verify QuickBooks Desktop Readiness

To calculate sales commissions, you must first select a data source. This could be QuickBooks Desktop, it could be your CRM system, or it could be a CSV manual import. One key advantage of using QuickBooks Desktop as a data source for sales commission calculations is that amounts and payment status are often more accurate. Indeed, most CRM systems do not automatically sync with financial systems, so amounts or payment statuses can be outdated / incorrect. For example, an invoice may show as paid in QuickBooks Desktop, but unpaid in CRM, which can result in errors when calculating sales commissions. Or amounts may be incorrect.

However, to calculate commissions using QuickBooks Desktop, we’ll need to credit each sales transaction (aka deal, order, invoice, contract, etc.) to users or teams / territories. What this means is that your QuickBooks Desktop tenant should include a custom field which specifies a rep or team / territory. This custom field can be a text field or a dropdown. You can use any type of identifier (ex: user name, employee ID, email address, etc.). If multiple reps or teams / territories need to be credited, create additional custom fields. If you are paying sales commissions based on territories alone, you may not need to add a custom field as existing fields such as “State” or “Country” may be sufficient.

This video shows you how you can add a custom field to QuickBooks Desktop records such as invoices or sales receipts. Creating a new field should lead you to the form below. Once you have created the custom field, you still need to display it (ex: on invoice form templates).


Sign Up For a Free Account

Simply click here and select “Login” in the top right corner. Next, click on the “Sign up” tab (as shown below). If you sign up with a social account (ex: LinkedIn), you won’t even need to confirm your email address!


Add a Connection to QuickBooks Desktop

In Sales Cookie, go to [Settings -> Connections] and add a connection to QuickBooks Desktop by clicking on the “Add” button:


Next, follow all the steps:

  • Install the Microsoft .NET runtime using this link
  • Install the QuickBooks desktop SDK using this link
  • Install our data synchronization application using this link

Quite often, you will not need to install the Microsoft .NET runtime because it’s already installed:


To download the QuickBooks SDK, you will need to sign in to your QuickBooks user account (or register):


To download our data synchronization application, you will need to select “Keep”, followed by “More Info” and “Run anyway”.


Next, our data synchronization application will ask you to paste your connector ID from Sales Cookie (this is the connector ID displayed to you when adding a connection to QuickBooks Desktop):


Finally, make sure QuickBooks Desktop is running. QuickBooks will ask you to authorize our application. Here is what you should select:


From that point on, we will keep synchronizing data (employees, invoices, and sales receipts) with Sales Cookie. Please note that synchronization only works when QuickBooks Desktop is running on your computer, with your company file open.

Add Users and Transactions from QuickBooks Desktop

Before adding users and transactions, you must wait a little bit. Our application is extracting employees, invoices, and sales receipts from QuickBooks Desktop starting from a year ago. To see how far the synchronization went, browse to directory C:\Users\%USERNAME%\AppData\Roaming\SalesCookie, and check dates in the text file.

To add users (technically employees), go to [Users -> Add Users] in Sales Cookie, and select QuickBooks Desktop as a data source. All your QuickBooks employees will be listed in an (editable) spreadsheet. Choose a role for your users (ex: participant, admin) and click next.


To add QuickBooks sales transactions, go to [Transactions -> Add Transactions] in Sales Cookie, and select QuickBooks Desktop as a data source. You can choose to import either invoices or sales receipt. If you want to import both, perform separate import operations. Give it a minute to retrieve and analyze your QuickBooks Desktop data. You can also choose to expand each line item as a separate record (this is not common).

Next, you’ll need to map fields to different categories (ex: owner, revenue, territory, etc.). You only need to do this once. Your mappings confirm which field(s) should be used to credit users, which field represents total revenue, etc. If you select automated updates, changes will be synchronized every hour!


Create Sales Incentive Plans

Using Sales Cookie, you can create all kinds of sales compensation plans – from basic (ex: plans with a simple revenue-based quota) to advanced (ex: plans with scoring, formulas, draws, splits, caps, profitability, etc.).

Below are just a few sample plans created within Sales Cookie. The Sales Cookie team will configure incentive plans for you free of charge – just send them a detailed description of your incentive program. For example, they can help you configure your plan so that only those invoices which have been marked as paid are processed.


Run Commission Calculations

To run a calculation, go to [Calculations -> Run Calculation] in Sales Cookie. Select a plan and a time period. Most commission calculations only take seconds to run and complete. When you open a calculation’s details, you will see additional information – credits, payouts, reports, etc. Your calculation is not “official” (nor visible) until you release it.


View Incentive Dashboards

For your reps to view their sales commissions, you must approve them. Go to your calculation and select “release rewards”. Your reps can now see relevant information on their personal incentive dashboard.

Here is an example of what it could look like (depending on your customizations). This renders properly on any mobile device as well. Your reps can even submit inquiries, enroll into incentive plans (ex: with e-signature), and much more.


Generate Commission Reports

Using Sales Cookie, you can generate all types of reports in 3 categories:

  • Attainment reporting
  • Credit reporting
  • Spend reporting

Here are some of the built-in reports:


You can also create your own (complex) reports using Microsoft Power BI. You can even generate reports using natural language queries and publish them to other users.


In Conclusion

Sales Cookie offers native integration with QuickBooks Desktop (Pro and Enterprise included). Using Sales Cookie, you will be able to easily manage sales commissions for your sales team. You will be able to calculate accurate commissions, verify payouts, and publish them to incentive dashboards. You will be able to pay your sales reps the right amount – on time.

You will also benefit from advanced reporting capabilities (ex: quota attainment, transaction crediting, spend reporting, etc.). You will be able to change incentive models any time without writing any code or automation. And will no longer need to deal with messy, manual sales commission spreadsheets!