Reference Books are settings and information needed for successful system operation. While some data is not mandatory and can be added on the go, some sections are necessary for the system to function properly – we recommend setting your Reference Books at the very beginning. You can access Reference Books under Settings → Reference Books.


Table of Contents


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On the main Reference Books page, there are six tabs on the left, with the All tab selected by default. 

The All tab lists all available Reference Books while the other tabs divides the settings by the type of information they contain, e.g. Your Company includes all company-related settings and Financial includes all financial-related information. There are five of these tabs in all:

The available settings in these tabs are discussed in more detail in the sections below.

Common features in the different Reference Books include an Export feature that allows them to be exported to CSV files and an Activity Log where all activities performed on the settings are recorded, including the date and time when a record was added and the name of the user who created the record. In some Reference Books that may run several pages such as Company Contacts, there's also a Search feature to allow easy searching through potentially hundreds of records.

Your Company

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You can configure your company details at any point, but doing this first will make it easier to use DEAR going forward. 

Company Addresses

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You can add shipping, billing and business addresses through this page. To add an address, click either the + button on the top left or the + Add more items button on the bottom left, enter the address details on the inserted row in the grid, then click Save.

You can select a default address for each of the address types. The default business address and the default shipping address is shown on documents. If more than one address is selected as default, the first default address in the list will be used.

Company Contacts

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Contact types can be business, shipping, billing, sale and employee. You can select the default contact for each type. At least one billing contact is required to send email invoices to customers. 

To add a contact, click either the + button on the top left or the + Add more items button on the bottom left, enter the address details on the inserted row in the grid, then click Save.

If more than one default option for each contact type is selected, the first default option in the list will be used automatically.

From this page, you can also add company contacts to a mailing list and specify a sales commission %.

DEAR to DEAR Networking

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DEAR to DEAR Networking allows you to connect directly with your suppliers and customers who also use DEAR. Once connected, you can send purchase orders to suppliers, send invoice and sales orders to customers and approve purchase orders/invoices/sales orders from the DEAR to DEAR Network. See DEAR to DEAR Networking for more information.


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DEAR Systems is an Inventory Management Solution – it is essential to have your financial settings set up correctly so your transactions can be properly classified. This should be the first thing you do when starting to use DEAR.

Chart of Accounts

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The chart of accounts is the list of all accounts your organisation has available to record your transactions and is important for classifying your transactions correctly and keeping your accounts accurate. We recommend that the first thing you do when using DEAR is to set up your Chart of Accounts.

DEAR provides a default Chart of Accounts, but you can import a chart from your accounting system or your own custom chart. You can add more accounts to suit your business requirements – make sure to consult with your accountant or bookkeeper before adding or editing any accounts. Make sure all accounts are mapped correctly as this is the information DEAR will use to create accounting transactions by default (you can also specify different accounts for different customers, suppliers, products). Incorrect accounts mapping may lead to synchronisation fail and problems with financial and tax reporting.

If DEAR is connected to accounting software (Xero/QBO) – no changes to the chart of accounts are allowed in DEAR. If you wish to edit the chart of accounts, you need to do so in the accounting applications and then run synchronisation with DEAR.

See Getting Started Guide - Chart of Accounts for more information about the required accounts for DEAR to function.

Bank Accounts

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Once your Chart of Accounts is mapped correctly to DEAR, you can connect your real-world bank accounts in order to import and classify your bank transactions. Learn more about adding and managing Bank Accounts in DEAR.

If you are using DEAR standalone, Bank Accounts are added and managed through this Reference Books page. If you are using Xero/QBO, bank accounts are added through Xero/QBO and imported to DEAR during synchronisation. You can view your bank accounts here, but you will not be able to make any changes.

Account Mapping

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Once you have populated your Chart of Accounts in DEAR or Xero/QBO, you must make sure the accounts are mapped correctly. This ensures that income and outgoings are correctly categorised and your books and reporting are accurate.

NOTE: If you do not have Gift Cards or Goods Received Not Invoiced/Goods Invoiced Not Received enabled, you will not be given these account options.

Opening Balances

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When you begin using DEAR, you will need to enter the account balances from your previous accounting system and the date you started using DEAR Inventory. This is what we call conversion balances or opening balances; this will make sure your transactions are correct going forward. This should be done when you sign up to DEAR before you start using DEAR for transactions. See Managing Opening Balances for more information.

Taxation Rules

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DEAR allows you to specify tax rules for whole orders, individual order lines, products, customers and suppliers. Tax Rates can have multiple tax components (e.g. a Sales Tax which includes a City Tax and State Tax components). See Tax Rules for more information.

Payment Terms

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These are the payment terms that can be set for sales/purchase orders. Payment terms can also be assigned to suppliers/customers, which will apply the payment term to all their sales/purchase orders.  

You can select from four available methods: 

  • Number of days: In the Duration (Days) fields, enter the number of days within which the payment is due. (30, 60, etc.)
  • Day of next month: In the Duration (Days) fields, enter the day of the month when payment is due. If 0 is selected, payment will be due on the the last day of the current month. 
  • Last day of next month: Payment due on last day of the month after the invoice month. This option is not available for for QuickBooks integrated accounts. 
  • Days since the end of the month: In the Duration (Days) fields, enter the number of days to be added to the end of the month. If 0 is selected, payment will be due on the the last day of the current month for created sales task, or first date of next month for recurring sales/invoices. 
  • Date-driven:Only available for QuickBooks integrated accounts. This allows you to move the invoice due date to the next month if an invoice is issued close to the due date. There are two parameters, DueNextMonth (in days) and Days. 
    • In the Duration (Days) fields, enter the day of the month when payment is due.
    • In the DueNextMonth field, enter the number of days from the due date where the due date will be pushed to the next month. e.g. payment is due on the 20th of the month (Days = 20), but if the invoice is issued fewer than 10 days before, payment is due on the 20th of the next month. 
      • Example 1: Invoice Date is 5th July 2019
        Days = 20
        DueNextMonth = 10

        In this case Due date will be 20th July 2019.
      • Example 2: Invoice Date is 15th July 2019
        Days = 20
        DueNextMonth = 10

        In this case Due date will be 20th August 2019.

You can set default terms and also make payment terms inactive. Default terms will appear on invoices automatically but can be manually changed.

Fixed Asset Types

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You can create multiple Fixed Asset Types to classify your fixed assets. Fixed Asset Types allow you to specify Depreciation Methods, Averaging Methods, Effective Life and other fixed asset parameters for a group rather than for each individual fixed asset. Learn more about Fixed Assets.

NOTE: You can assign a fixed asset type to a fixed asset, but still change the depreciation parameters of an individual fixed asset. Change depreciation parameters by going to Financials → Fixed Assets, selecting the fixed asset and manually changing the parameters.

Default Field Values

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This is where default field values for new products, customers and suppliers are configured. Default field values allow faster and more convenient data entry from anywhere within the system. 

When default field values are set up, every time a new product, customer or supplier is created from within DEAR, the available fields are pre-filled with these values.

When creating new product/customer/supplier records, the fields with default values remain editable, meaning you can change their values at any time.

Default field values are also referenced when creating customers in Amazon, eBay, Magento, ShipStation, Shopify and WooCommerce if your DEAR account is integrated with these systems.


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Enter the default field values for new products here. For more details, see Default Field Values for New Products.


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Enter the default field values for new customers here. For more details, see Default Field Values for New Customers.


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Enter the default field values for new suppliers here. For more details, see Default Field Values for New Suppliers.

Other Items

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This section includes Reference Books that don't fit neatly into the other categories. 


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List carriers you will be using to transport your goods. You can select from these carriers in the Ship tab of the sales process. If known, enter their tracking URLs as well, which serve the following purposes:

  • generating a tracking link in printed PDFs
  • use in e-Commerce integrations that support them (e.g. Shopify)
  • notifying users when the tracking number is changed.

Shipping Zones

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The regions and countries that you ship to are known as shipping zones. Each shipping zone includes shipping rates that apply to customers whose addresses are within that zone. Shipping zones are used to calculate shipping rates for your customers automatically. You can add price-based and/or weight-based rules to your shipping zones. See Shipping Zones for more information.

Additional Attributes

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Due to a large number of different requirements from system users selling a variety of products through DEAR Inventory and dealing with a variety of suppliers and customers, it is quite often that there will be a need to collect and store additional information that is not in the default fields on an inventory item, supplier and customer record.

For you to best describe your items, we have included the ability to create custom fields that can be used to describe your products, suppliers and customers (e.g. an electrical goods retailer wishing to list power and voltage information for their products can use Additional Attributes to do so). See Additional Attributes for more information.

Mailing List

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Mailing lists can be used to group together company or external contacts so they can be easily notified. The Mailing List feature in Reference Books is the same as that in the Automation module in DEAR. For more information, see Mailing Lists.


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The Stock section of Reference Books contains information relevant to your products, services and other inventory items. See Product and Service Management and DEAR Support - Inventory for more information about Inventory Management.

Product Categories

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Product Categories are used to segment your products. Products can only belong to one category at a time; for additional segmentation, you can use Product Tags. When creating a product, you will be asked to select a category from this Reference Books section or create a new category.


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Product Brands are also used to segment your products. Only one brand can be assigned to a product at a time. For additional segmentation, you can use Product Tags. When creating a product, you will be asked to select a brand from this Reference Books section or create a new brand.

Locations and Bins

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Use Locations to organise your stock. Ensure inventory is picked or received from the right location (warehouse, shop, office, etc.) and maintain a complete view of stock levels across all your organisation locations. You can also add bins to further organise items within a location and/or warehouse. Bins are the smallest available unit of space in a warehouse, they describe the position in the warehouse where the goods are or can be stored.

You must also add Fixed Asset Locations to register and manage your fixed assets. You cannot create fixed assets without assigning a fixed asset location to them. Even if your stock and fixed assets are kept at the same physical location, you will need to create a separate entry for the Location and the Fixed Asset Location.

For users of the DEAR Warehouse Management Solution (WMS) app, DEAR allows you to assign products to one or more Pick Zones to streamline picking. When using the WMS app, you will be given the option to select a Pick Zone as well as a Location during picking.

Order Routing

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This feature simplifies the sales order process for e-Commerce channels. Routing zones which are mapped to specific inventory locations can be specified. Once an order is made through the sales channel, the system will automatically find the item in a retailer's inventory nearest to the provided shipping location and get the product to the customer. See Order Routing for more information. 

NOTE: Order Routing is available only for sales on e-Commerce channels such as Amazon, eBay, Etsy, WooComerce, Handshake, Magento, and Shopify. It is NOT available for Shopify POS sales.

Units of Measure

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You can define units of measure you will be using to measure your products or services. When creating a Product, you can select a unit of measure for the product from this pre-specified list or create a new one.

NOTE: This is not the same as defining the default units of measurement for your store, which is done from Settings → General Settings → Product and Measurement Settings. For products that can be sold as a single item or cases of multiple items (e.g. a wine bottle, a case of wine), we recommend specifying Additional Units of Measure.

Product Deals

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Product Deals are more complicated combinations of discounts that are applied at the shopping cart level. Product Deals can be used to apply or combine discounts at the shopping cart level for your customers, for example, if a customer's shopping cart has met certain criteria, such as including certain products or brands or matching a certain order amount. Learn more about Product Deals.

Product Discounts

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DEAR Inventory has the ability to add discounts and markups to products. These can be applied at the product level, customer group level and individual customer level. Learn more about Product Discounts.

RMA (Returns)

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Return Order processing is a complicated procedure which involves the creation of jobs, sale orders, expenses, write-offs and more. Configuring your organisation's RMA settings and return policies allows for many of these steps to be automated, facilitating the work of inspection staff and managers. 

Return policy settings must be configured before RMAs and return orders can be initiated.

When you have finished configuring your return settings, see Returns (RMAs and Return Orders)

Product Return Policy Set Up

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In this section you can configure your organisation's return policies. Return policies defines what products, after what period of time can be returned. Setting return policies for products streamlines the decision-making process and allows some automation of workflows involved (inspection, replacement, restock, write-off, etc.) Return policies are used in DEAR to streamline the returns workflow, however, authorising a final decision is in the hands of the RMA officer.

From this page, you can add, edit, search, and delete return policies. At least one return policy must be active in order for RMAs and return orders to be initiated.

See Configure returns policies and settings - Product return policy for detailed information.

Reasons for Product Return

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Understanding why customers sometimes return their purchases is an important concern for any business, especially for online stores. In this section, add reasons for product return that can be selected during the returns process.

See Configure returns policies and settings - Reasons for product return.

Return Order Settings

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Return order settings control which location products should be returned to by default when an RMA is created through the DEAR web portal, and which expense accounts should be used by default for warranty expenses, non-warranty expenses, and scrapped products. Appropriate expense accounts will need to be created in the organisation's chart of accounts if they do not already exist. This information will be used to auto-populate RMA order fields, but can be manually edited if required. Return order settings must be active in order for RMAs and return orders to be initiated.

See Configure returns policies and settings - Return order settings.


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DEAR Inventory provides sellers with the ability to track warranties for their products. This feature helps facilitate the Return Merchandise Authorisation (RMA) process when products are returned during the warranty period. It also leads to improved customer support as well as helps track and reduce repair costs. To know more about this feature, see Warranties.


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The CRM module helps organisations streamline processes, build customer relationships, increase sales and improve customer service.

Lead statuses

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In addition to the default lead statuses, you can add your own custom statuses here (Coming soon: Custom lead statuses will be added to the Lead Kanban board as columns). Add custom lead statuses by clicking + or Add more items, click on an existing custom lead status to edit it, and delete custom lead statuses. See Leads for more information. 

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