Sales tax for e-commerce: What Small Businesses Need to Know

The challenge is keeping up with changing tax laws. Given the recent legislative changes, you have to deal with many challenges, especially in eCommerce. In 2018, Vertex reported that 6919 standard sales tax rates were changed. According to the same report, sales tax rates have been lowered to 5886 since 2001.

There are a lot of laws that small businesses need to monitor, and some of these new changes will make business taxes more costly in places that did not have these kinds of provisions up until now. Wondering what’s the best way to comply with this regulation? Well, the smart thing to do in this situation would be to partner up with an eCommerce solution like PayPro, capable of providing you with the technology and expertise to manage global tax compliance.

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How to adjust to new sales tax laws for e-commerce?

It’s hard to keep in line with the evolving sales tax laws. When your business is determining whether it is qualified to collect or pay taxes, you must implement systems and processes that help ensure your responsibility is met. According to Christian Gainsbrugh, the founder of LearningCart, “the decision will affect technology. Many sales tax calculations are taken for granted but controlling these rates behind the scenes is not an easy task.”

Choose a point-of-sale platform that tracks tax liabilities

Technology may assist a small business in such a complicated situation. The POS software is integrated with accounting software that can process various states’ sales tax laws. Shopify Square, Clover, Vend, and POS services provide taxation solutions for sales. There is software available that helps businesses meet these obligations in multiple states. Dillon shared this opinion with TaxJar in June 2018. For online retailers, having software to help manage the complexity of the product.

Make sure you’re monitoring sales tax rates in all states

The majority of states changed their tax laws as a result. The California sales tax law changed on April 1, 2018. A company selling merchandise online for an estimated $100,000 to California customers will have to pay California taxes. Those who logged at least 100 transactions separately in California were taxed as well. The state will update its sales tax requirements for businesses with more than three sales per month by February 2020.

Decide how you plan to track e-commerce sales tax laws

Large retailers are advantaged when competing with smaller retailers because they have resources available to pay for the changes to laws and regulations quickly to adapt. Small companies with lower budgets will face more burdensome sales tax compliance requirements, says Gainsborough. Some states, such as Maryland and South Carolina, use a flat sales tax rate, but states like Washington use sales tax on counties.

How to comply with ecommerce sales tax?

States of substantial economic Nexus may pose serious risks to rapidly expanding businesses. The media may report on the success of your business, and the auditor may find them. In states that include New York, whistleblowing cases make suing a non-compliant firm financially profitable. Tell us your best strategy for preventing the problem. Check for compliance with eCommerce sale taxes on all of your Nexus states.

Consider automating state sales tax bookkeeping and payments

Most businesses follow their sales tax law manually by sending the Department of Revenue a copy to one or two states in which the notice was issued. Unfortunately, these procedures are not scaleable. If the business has increased its obligations to collect money at the show and fulfill the demand for Amazon dropshipping or the economic Nexus, it could take a couple of hours a month. It’s a reality: growth occurs regardless of whether your company is ready for sale. To prevent a costly and challenging audit, a new solution must be developed.

Collect, report, and file your sales tax returns

You will be required to report sales tax in each state when you get your permit. The reports required vary greatly depending on the state in which you submit the information. Frequent reporting usually depends on your sales volume, but enterprises can prepare quarterly or monthly income tax forms for the tax return. If you did not pay tax within one particular jurisdiction, you should still go through the filing process. Even with the amount at zero, there may be penalties for not paying or not receiving the required payment.

Determine where you have sales tax nexus and what products are subject to ecommerce sales tax

You need to understand each state’s tax code to get a good idea of operating your online store. Without a thorough grasp of the state-wide sales tax law, it is possible to lose revenue through audits, fines, or repayment. Using sourcing to understand how sales are taxed can begin. Avalara said that origin-sourced sales are taxed wherever sellers are located, whereas destination-sourced sales are taxed when they arrive at a place in which a buyer takes possession. As a seller, this is important.

Examples of Taxes in the Several States


Arizona is the origination territory for sellers of Nexus. Usually, a seller outside the US is the buyer in the Arizona area, and the seller must also sell in Arizona. Also, you have to register with the local jurisdiction where you sell to pay destination taxes. Transaction privilege tax (TAT) applies to businesses in Arizona that have earned a privilege to make transactions in Arizona. Similar to sales tax across the country, businesses that return the sales tax to the states can collect TPT. Simplified sales of products using taxes are another concept in Arizona.


Connecticut is a destination state and is much less crowded than other states because it is governed by no state-level tax. In Connecticut, the buyer is considered a seller subject to the sale of goods whose prices are taxable unless a company has the same products. Economic Nexus Thresholds: a gross profit rate of $255,000 a year for each of the previous 12 months.


Alabama is the state of destination which means it will be able to collect the sales taxes. Alabama typically doesn’t require tax for delivery unless the carrier uses it, and shipment of goods and supplies is broken into lines as separate items instead of included in product pricing.

To sum up

The sales tax is a complex topic, and it is stressful for businesses to keep up. Online goods started being taxable products only recently, leading to significant changes within the tax law. Given that each state in the US and country worldwide has its regulations regarding online commerce taxation, small and large businesses need extensive resources to tackle these issues. So, to have a smooth global expansion investing in a partnership with a company fit to manage the entire tax environment would be an intelligent business call.


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