Skip to main content
Avalara Help Center

Map the items you sell to Avalara tax codes

This article applies to:Avalara AvaTax Update

Map the items you sell to Avalara tax codes so AvaTax Update 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

See the guidelines for mapping items to 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 accounting software. 
  • We recommend mapping items to tax codes in either your accounting software or AvaTax Update but not both. Mapping items in AvaTax Update overrides mapping items in your system.  


  1. Determine where to map tax codes.
    • To map in your system, follow the steps for your unique system.
    • To map in AvaTax Update,  follow the steps below. 
  2. In AvaTax Update, go to Settings > What You Sell.
  3. Click Add an Item.
  4. 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.
  5. Select the Avalara tax code that best fits your item.  
    A list of codes displays when you start typing.
  6. 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
  7. Click Save when you're done.

AvaTax Update calculates the tax rate based on the taxability of the tax code. The item is listed on the What You Sell page. To view it, go to Settings > What you Sell.  

  • Was this article helpful?