a.m.

Don’t use this. Instead, use AM (no periods, capitalize). See more guidelines for time.

About me

A phrase used in Intuit Live Community. Use sentence case (don’t capitalize the “m” in “Me”).

above, below

Don’t use above or below to refer to an object or text in an article or topic. If possible, try to refer to an exact area in text (a step number, for example). Or try these alternatives: following, preceding, previous, and next. It’s OK to use above or below if you’re referring to a user interface element, or if space constraints make above or below the best alternative for a particular situation.

accept

Customers have a tough time understanding the holding bin model in QuickBooks. Because we detect their transactions, customers think those transactions are already in their books. They don’t understand what accept means in that context. Using add instead seems to help mitigate that confusion. Just be as straightforward as possible.

account

Account is not a proper noun. Use lowercase.

account names

For specific account names, use the name shown in the chart of accounts list (QuickBooks) and add account (lowercase) at the end. Match the user interface.

account statement

Use account statement, not bank statement.

accountant

One of our target audiences (along with small business, self-employed, and developer). Don’t capitalize it. Often when we write for the accountant segment, we are also solving for nonaccountants. That means we should lead with the definition, and then use the accounting term.

accountant ready

Don’t capitalize this feature, even when it appears in the developer site or experience. Avoid the term accountant enabled.

accounts payable (A/P)

Write as shown. Don’t use A/P if you’re introducing the term for the first time. Better still, lead with an explanation (money owed by a business to its suppliers) and provide the term after.

accounts receivable (A/R)

Write as shown. Don’t use A/R if you’re introducing the term for the first time. Better still, lead with an explanation (a legally enforceable claim for payment) and provide the term after.

active, inactive

Use active or inactive when referring to services or subscriptions. Use make active or make inactive for actions that the customer can take on objects (customers, vendors, and employees). Don’t use active or inactive to refer to features, functions, or parts of the product—use grayed out instead.

add

Research tell us customers prefer add over accept, gather, and collect because it sounds less labor-intensive. In QuickBooks we say “add… to” for bank transactions, based on research showing that customers find it easier to understand than other options.

Example: Add bank transactions to your books.
Note: you add transactions TO your books; you don’t add transactions INTO your books.

Add from Contacts

Add from Contacts is a label we use in QuickBooks Online for Android. The term indicates that an item can be selected from the user’s contact list. In this case, capitalize the C in contacts.

add-in/add-on

Use add-in for programs and add-on for hardware.

adjusted gross income (AGI)

Don’t capitalize.

admin

Use admin whether you’re referring to an individual, role, or password. No need to spell out the full word (administrator) nor capitalize it.

Examples:
Only the admin can add new users.
Enter your admin password.
You need admin privileges to add inventory items.

Adobe Acrobat Reader, Adobe Acrobat, Adobe Reader

Any of the variations shown here will work.

adviser

Don’t write advisor. Exception: ProAdvisor.

Affordable Care Act (ACA)

Spell out the law as shown. Don’t write “ACA,” “Affordable care act,” or “Obamacare.”

agent

In QuickBooks, use agent as the preferred term to refer to customer care staff. Don’t use representative or rep. There’s no need to specify the type of agent; agent usually suffices. Support agent is also OK.

aging

In the accounting world, aging means the length of time that an invoice or a customer credit has been outstanding. In your day-to-day life, aging is an irrevocable chess game with Father Time.

aging report

A report that lists the length of time that an invoice or a customer credit has been outstanding. Don’t capitalize this.

all rights reserved

A legal phrase indicating that the author of an original work holds all of the rights afforded to him or her under copyright law. Lowercase is fine here.

allows, allows you to

Don’t use; instead, use let or can.

Example: QuickBooks lets you keep your business finances organized.

Alternative Minimum Tax

Capitalize as shown.

amortization

This is the U.S. English spelling of the word. Amortisation is the British English spelling. Use the appropriate spelling for the locale you’re working with.

What the dictionary says:
Amortization is the systematic allocation of a balance sheet item to expense (or revenue) on the income statement.

AMT

You can use this acronym for Alternative Minimum Tax after you spell out the full term.

and so on

This phrase is preferred over etc., but try to avoid the use of either. Be specific and concise.

and/or

This is redundant, don’t use. The slash alone will suffice, if the options truly are one or the other (or both).

AnswerXchange

In TurboTax, capitalize as shown.

anti words

Don’t hyphenate. Do this: antibody, antitrust, antivirus

antivirus

One word, no hyphen.

any time (adj), anytime (adv)

Use two words when it’s an adjective modifying a noun (it answers the question “what”), or when the word at is in front of it. Use one word when used as an adverb modifying a verb (it answers the question “when”).

Examples:
I won’t have any time until next Tuesday.
Download the PDF anytime for a step-by-step guide.
Security is available at any time of the day or night.

API

Use the acronym API in all instances. This term is only for the developer site and experience.

app

For desktop applications, use application rather than program. For web and mobile applications, use app. Don’t capitalize.

Examples:
Make edits to your logo in your graphics application before you import it into QuickBooks.
QuickBooks Desktop is an application that helps you manage your business finances.
QuickBase is a web app that lets you easily create a web database for your business.
SnapTax is one of Intuit’s mobile apps.

appears

OK to use, especially when data populates, but opens is preferred for lists and windows that open. See also display. Do this: When you open Windows Explorer, a list of folders and files appears.

Apple ID

Apple is a proper noun, so we capitalize it (except when we’re talking about the fruit, but that’s another conversation entirely).

Apple Safari; Safari

A web browser is a proper noun, so we capitalize it.

application programming interface; API

A language and message format used by an application program to communicate with the operating system or some other control program such as a database management system (DBMS) or communications protocol. When writing it as an acronym, capitalize. This term is OK for the developer site and is probably something we don’t need to mention to other customers.

assist, assistance

Don’t use. Help is our preferred term.

AST

For clarity, spell out automated sales tax (AST) on first use on the page or screen and just AST after that. This term is more common in the developer site and experience. It’s probably not something we talk about with other customers.

at the top; at the bottom

Never write these location cues as shown. And don’t write topmost or bottommost either. This kind of directional language is not accessible for customers navigating our products with screen readers.

auto-fill

Hyphenate as shown.

autocategorization

Not auto-categorization or autocat.