When we started our Autopilot sales tax solution, TaxJar, we talked to merchants of all kinds. And one of the things we found out over and over again was that sellers were spending hour after hour on sales tax compliance.
Sales Tax: The Hard Way
If you have to deal with sales tax in multiple states or through multiple channels, and you aren’t automating this process, then you’re familiar with doing sales tax the hard way.
Once you’ve collected sales tax from customers in states where you have sales tax nexus, you must then remit what you’ve collected periodically. This is simple enough if you sell on one platform – say eBay – and only have sales tax nexus in your home state. But as your business begins to grow, things started to get complicated.
If you don’t find a way to put your sales tax on Autopilot, and if you sell on more than one platform, you need to pull a report from each platform when it comes time to file a sales tax return. Then you have to add up how much you collected in each state.
Don’t forget, if you have nexus in multiple states – either because you have an office, employee, warehouse or even use 3rd party fulfillment in a state – then you have nexus in multiple states and they’ll all want a periodic sales tax filing. This might mean filling out a sales tax return monthly in your home state of New York, and three more in Wisconsin, Nevada and Arizona quarterly, and then perhaps an annual report in California.
And did I mention that some destination-based sales tax states require you to subtotal how much tax you collected in every single county or jurisdiction? It’s amazing how much merchants are expected to put up with just in order to comply with sales tax regulations.
Dealing with information from multiple states?
Trying to calculate just exactly how much you owe to each state?
Juggling due dates?
That’s sales tax the hard way.
Sales Tax: The Easy Way
Fortunately for online sellers, some Autopilot sales tax solutions have come to town.
Sales tax services pull in how much sales tax you collected from the various platforms you sell on – including Amazon, eBay, Etsy, Square, or PayPal, or even through your own website with a platform like Bigcommerce, Shopify or WooCommerce.
Sales tax Autopilot solutions also mean you never have to worry again about totaling up how much sales tax you collected. If you put your sales tax on Autopilot, that’s all done for you. You’ll also get a reminder of your due dates, meaning no more $50 (or more!) late fees for forgetting a filing.
TaxJar’s AutoFile feature will even file your sales tax return for you, meaning no more filling out miles-long forms or dealing with each state’s various filing practices.
If you aren’t automating your sales tax compliance, what are you waiting for? Check out a service like TaxJar and put your sales tax on autopilot.
Mark Faggiano is the founder and CEO of TaxJar, a service built to make post-transaction sales tax compliance easier for Etsy, Amazon, Shopify and other multi-channel ecommerce sellers. Mark’s passion is solving complex problems for small businesses. Sign up for a 30-day free trial of TaxJar and put a lid on sales tax!