How Do I Import Expenses From a File?

If you’re not a fan of manual entry, or you’d like to bring in missing Expenses, or older Expenses than the ones brought in by your bank account, you can upload Expenses in bulk with a CSV file in the same currency.
Most banks will allow you to download your transactions as a CSV file. We recommend making a separate CSV file, ensuring the file has these required headers, and then filling it in with your data: 
  • Amount - All negative or all positive numbers only
  • Category - Use only Operating Expense Parent Categories and Subcategories
    • If the Category does not yet exist, Expenses imported under this non-existent Category will be categorized under Uncategorized Expenses instead
  • Date - Use the same date format for all
  • Description
  • Merchant
Once your file is ready, import it in with these steps:
  1. Go to the Expenses section
  2. Click on the More Actions button
  3. Select Import Expenses from a File
    Import expenses from a file button in Expenses section.
  4. Click on Choose File…
  5. Select your CSV
  6. Match the fields to the columns from your file using the dropdown (e.g., Date should match to the column in your file that is also labelled as Date)
    Fields for mapping from your file to the fields in Freshbooks.
  7. Once you’re done matching and specifying your Currency and Date Format, click on Import Expenses
  8. New Expenses will be added and you can start reviewing them in your list of Expenses


How are duplicate Expenses handled?
All Expenses will be imported in, regardless if they are duplicates or transfers to pay off a balance. We recommend checking the CSV before import to ensure only unique transactions are brought in.

Which types of transactions can be imported in? 
Only negative amounts as -x.xx (withdrawals, payments, or debits) can be imported in. If your file has both positive and negative amounts, the negative amounts will only come in.

If your file only has all positives or all negatives, they will still be imported in. Currently, only payments and debits can be tracked. If you've accidentally imported in credits or reimbursements, you can delete the expenses afterwards to keep your reporting accurate.

Why did I get an error uploading my file?
The CSV file may be invalid depending on the error:
  • The CSV file itself is corrupt - copy the information to a new workbook and re-save as a .csv format
  • There are no header columns in the file or one header column is missing - Amount, Category, Date, Description and Merchant are required to be the first row in the file (if headers are missing, the first row is skipped)
  • There are unsupported characters like $ in the Amount column
  • The dates under the Date column are not written with dashes (-) or slashes (/) in between numbers (e.g., 01/17/2020 and 01-17-2020 are accepted)
  • There are empty cells in the file (right click and select Delete to clear out empty cells)
  • The specified date format does not match the format in the file
  • The file is larger than 5 MB - try splitting it into two or more CSVs instead