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Avalara Help Center

Map the items you sell to Avalara tax codes

This article applies to:AvaTax

Map the items you sell to Avalara tax codes so that AvaTax calculates the most accurate sales tax rate for your customers. If you don't assign tax codes, all products and services are taxed at the standard rate for each jurisdiction. Examples of products with varying tax rates include clothing, food, software, medical supplies, software subscriptions, and freight.  

Before you begin

Determine where you want to map items to Avalara tax codes.

  • The most common place to map an item to a tax code is the place where you maintain your master inventory list, which is typically in your business application. Find your business application or system for specific instructions.
  • We recommend mapping items to tax codes in either your business application or system or AvaTax, but not both. Mapping items in AvaTax overrides mapping items in your application. 
  • If your transactions come from multiple systems, it's usually easier to map all of them in AvaTax to simplify item mapping maintenance. 

Tariff codes or product attributes may also be required to calculate customs duties or special taxes. Items with these parameters can't be imported in bulk.

Tip icon Does your company participate in the Streamlined Sales Tax (SST) program? If so, each item you sell in a participating state must be mapped to an Avalara tax code and have an item description. See SST Transaction Requirements to learn more.



To map items to Avalara tax codes in AvaTax

  1. In AvaTax, go to Settings > What You Sell.
  2. Click Add an Item.
  3. Enter an item code and description.
    The item code must match the name of the product, service, or charge as it is recorded in your business application.
  4. Select the Avalara tax code that best fits your item.  
    A list of codes displays when you start typing.
  5. If you can't find the code you're looking for, scroll down to the end of the list and click Browse the Directory. Or, create a custom tax code
  6. Select one of the following options:
    • Save: If you use AvaTax to calculate sales and use tax, VAT, or GST, select Save when you're done.
    • Save and get attributes: If you use AvaTax to calculate other types of taxes or fees, select Save and Get Attributes.
      If additional attributes are required for accurate tax calculation, they appear under the Define Product Attributes section.
      1. Enter the required information for each attribute.
        Refer to this guide for more information about the attribute options.
      2. Select Save when you're done.
  7. Repeat steps 3-6 if you have more than one item to map. 
    Tip icon

    If you need to map many items to Avalara tax codes, see import and map items to tax codes in AvaTax

AvaTax adjusts the tax rate and displays the items on the What You Sell page. Go to Settings > What you Sell to see your items.  

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