Xero: How to Import Bank Statements

One of the most impressive features of Xero is that it provides unmatched visibility into your finances. It has a range of features to accomplish this goal, one of which is the ability to import your bank statements. However, you might have a hard time doing so if you’re using the software for the first time.

Xero: How to Import Bank Statements

No worries – this article will show you the ins and outs of importing bank statements in Xero.

How to Import a Bank Statement to Xero

Even though Xero is a robust platform, you can’t send your bank statements directly to the program. Instead, you’ll need to transfer the information from your online banking platform.

This might sound daunting, but the process is fairly simple. The first step is to create a CSV file. The most common way to do so is to download it straight from your e-banking software:

  • Open your online banking app and enter your credentials.
  • Find the transaction you wish to import to Xero.
  • Download it using the SCV format.
  • If necessary, edit the information before importing it to Xero.
  • Make sure the statement(s) is saved on your PC as a CSV file.

Downloading a bank statement from your e-banking software is straightforward. But as with everything related to finances, it doesn’t always work smoothly. Your program may keep you from downloading the file to your computer.

If that’s the case, you can set up a CSV import file of your own using Xero. Take the following steps to do so.

  1. Open Xero and head to “Accounting” section.
  2. Choose the prompt that leads to “Bank Accounts.”
  3. Find the applicable bank account.
  4. Choose the “Manage Account” option and press the “Import Statement” function.
  5. Use the provided link to download your file.

Keep in mind that if you download your CSV file this way, the template will be regional. What does this mean? It means that the software will determine the region of your file according to your browser language. However, if the platform can’t identify your region, it’ll use New Zealand English as the default.

Once your file is ready, you can finally add it to your Xero account.

  1. Open Xero and navigate to “Accounting.”
  2. Choose the “Bank Accounts” menu and find the account where you’ll transfer your bank statement.
  3. Select “Manage Account,” followed by “Import Statement,” and “File to Upload.”
  4. Use the “File to Upload” menu to add your bank statement. Dragging and dropping the statement is the fastest option. Alternatively, tap the “Select file” function to pick a statement from your device.
  5. Press “Next” and categorize fields in columns if the platform requires you to do so.
  6. Choose the preferred date format you wish to use for your bank statement.
  7. Tap “Next” once again and examine your transaction before the import. This menu allows you to remove any transfers you don’t want to incorporate into your import.
  8. After reviewing the information, tap “Complete import,” and that’s all there is to it.

How to Edit Your Bank Statements Before Importing Them to Xero

As previously discussed, you can import your statement to Xero immediately after downloading or creating your CSV file. The program doesn’t require you to make any tweaks to the file, but this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do so. Editing some of the information on your statement allows you to manage it more easily once it’s in the system.

There are several types of adjustments you can make when importing files. One of them is entering certain information into your fields.


Make sure your incomes and outlays are arranged uniformly. In other words, don’t put them in separate columns and risk lowering the efficacy of your Xero toolbox.

Additionally, the most intuitive way to present your incomes and outlays goes as follows:

  • Incomes – positive values
  • Outlays – negative values

Avoid indicating decimals with commas because it can skew the results, especially if you have a large number of transactions in your statement.


Another great thing about Xero is that it gives you a large number of formats to choose from. You can find these when uploading your statements. The most common solutions include:



A description isn’t mandatory, but it lets you manage your transactions effortlessly. By providing more details for individual transactions, you don’t have to wonder where it came from or why you made the payment. This ties in perfectly with your goal – keeping your finances navigable and transparent.


Your payee details might be the most important information to include in your statement. It tells you who you made the payment to, eliminating any guesswork associated with this process.

You can use existing Xero contacts to specify your payees. In that case, be sure that the name in your Xero contacts is identical to the one in your file. Otherwise, you risk creating duplicates and overwhelming your spreadsheet with unnecessary information.

Reference and Check Number

If you’re like most people, you probably make credit card authorizations or SWIFT payments daily. However, it can be hard to distinguish between these transfers unless you use a certain number. That’s where your reference comes in. Be sure to add it to your file before uploading your statement.

The same goes for check numbers. Regardless of who you make it out to, you want to have a number next to your check for easier identification.

Import Errors

Here are some of the errors you may encounter when importing bank statements to Xero:

  • Invalid data – Make sure you’re using the right format.
  • Timeout error – Upload fewer transactions at a time.
  • There was a problem importing the file – Check if you’re using the right column format or alignment.

Become a Prudent Financial Mind

There’s no need to manually review your transactions when you can upload statements to Xero within seconds. Don’t forget to format your file properly and include essential data to simplify your financial management.

How many statements do you import to Xero? Do you use any other tools for your finances? Let us know in the comments section below.

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