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Merchant-based Expense Rules
Merchant-based Expense Rules

This article explains merchant-based expense rules and the steps to create them to fill the expense fields based on merchant automatically.

Written by Pradyumna Dinni
Updated over a week ago

You might have recurring payments to the vendors for a similar purpose. For example, Subscriptions of Microsoft or Fyle that are accounted for in the same GL Account.

Sometimes your employees who avail of these services from merchants don’t fill in the correct details, and the accounting team needs to send back the expenses or manually correct the details.

Presenting you Merchant-based Expense Rules where you, the Administrator, can set rules for auto-filling the details of expenses. You can create rules like this:
If the merchant name contains Uber, then Set the Category to Taxi

Creating Expense Rules

Please follow the steps below to create the merchant-based expense rules for your organization:

  1. In the Organization view, go to Settings > Expenses > Expense Rules

  2. Click on Add Expense Rule

  3. Under If, enter the characters present on your merchant name. For example, if you're creating a rule for Amazon, where at times, the card provider sends you Amaz as name, you can enter Amaz in this field. Note that you can enter alpha-numeric values here. You don't have to enter the right merchant name as we use pattern matching based on the characters entered, like Amaz for Amazon.
    Click on Save and Next after entering the merchant name.

  4. Under Then Set, select the fields you want to pre-fill based on the merchant name. If you want to pre-fill a category value based on the merchant, select Category and select the right Category in the dropdown. You can set multiple fields by clicking on Add Another Field.

    You can also select any of the following fields (more than one): Project, Cost Center, Billable (Yes/No), and the Custom expense fields available for your organization.

    Click on Save and Next after entering the fields.

  5. After selecting the fields, you can choose the audience, i.e., to whom the expense rule should be applied. You can choose either Apply For Everyone or select a department.

    After you enter all the details, you can click on Save Expense Rule to save the rule.

After this, the expense rules will be applied, and the fields will be automatically filled on the future matching expenses.


  • If you get the raw merchant names from the card transactions or the receipts, you can clean up the merchant's name on the expense by selecting Merchant under Then Set while creating the expense rule. This way, the merchant's name will be right on the expense form.

  • After you create an expense rule, it will be applied to future expenses. The rules won't be applied to the existing expenses on Fyle.

  • You can create separate rules for each department. For example, if your Sales department has recurring expenses for a merchant and no other employee from another department has the expenses from that merchant, you can selectively create the rule for the Sales department alone.

  • While creating the expense rules, at times, you may accidentally select the fields that are not allowed on previously selected fields. For example, in this case, the Category is selected first (Office Supplies), followed by Project (Construction-3). But from Settings, Fyle identified that Office Supplies isn't allowed on Construction-3. Hence, we reset the values so that the correct values are filled as per your configuration.

Duplicate or Conflicting Rules

Ensure that you don't create any conflicting or duplicate rules. Fyle fills the fields on the expense form by applying the latest created expense rule.

Example: If there is an expense rule that states

  • If merchant contains Uber, set Category to Food

and another expense rules states

  • If merchant contains Uber, set Category to Taxi,

The latest created expense rule will be applied to the matching expenses. Please be careful while creating multiple expense rules.

From where can you create expense rules?

As an admin, you can create the expense rules from these pages:

  • Organization Settings > Expenses > Expense Rules

  • From the Company Expenses page: After you edit an expense, you can see a card that can help you in creating expense rules so that the details are auto-filled for future expenses.

  • From the View Report page: After you edit and save an expense inside an expense report, you can see a card that can help you in creating expense rules.

What happens after a rule is created?

After an expense rule is created, Fyle looks for the expenses with matching merchant name containing the values entered in the rule. Once there's a matching merchant name, Fyle fills the fields on the expense form based on the rule created by you, the admin. You can read this help article to understand how the expense rules will work and where they don't work.

Note that expense rules are not applied when a user is editing the expense but are applied in the background after an expense is saved.

Feel free to reach out to our Support Team at [email protected] for more information about expense rules.

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