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Avalara Help Center

What You Sell

This article applies to:Avalara AvaTax Update

Some products and services are taxed differently in different jurisdictions. Associate pre-defined Avalara tax codes with each product and service you sell so AvaTax Update knows what tax rate to apply in each jurisdiction. Items that aren't mapped to Avalara tax codes are treated as tangible personal property, and are fully taxed during calculation.

Map Avalara tax codes to your products either in your accounting software or in AvaTax Update.

Why should I map items to Avalara tax codes?

Map items to Avalara tax codes, and when your accounting software processes transactions, or when you upload the transactions to AvaTax Update, AvaTax Update determines the taxability for the items you sell based on the rules behind these Avalara tax codes. Find the codes you need using the online Tax Code Search Tool.

You can map items to Avalara tax codes in your accounting software or in AvaTax Update. Usually, mapping them in your accounting software works better and takes less time. See our handy chart for a little guidance deciding whether you should map items to Avalara tax codes in your accounting software or directly in AvaTax Update.

Keep in mind that Avalara updates Avalara tax codes when taxability rules and laws change, but any custom tax codes and rules you create aren't automatically updated when changes occur. To be sure you're using the most current rules to tax your products and services, use Avalara tax codes. If you map your items to universal product codes (UPCs), you don't need to use Avalara tax codes because UPCs already have taxability rules associated with them.

If you map in both your accounting software and in AvaTax Update, the mapping in AvaTax Update overrides any mapping in your accounting software.

 

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Map items to Avalara tax codes in your accounting software

If you can, map items to tax codes in your accounting software rather than in AvaTax Update. That way all the information about your items is in one place.

Use the instructions provided by the company that makes your business software to find out how to map items to tax codes there.

Map an item to an Avalara tax code in AvaTax Update

If you can't map items to tax codes in your accounting software, do it in AvaTax Update.

  1. Go to Settings > Manage items with special tax treatment.
  2. Click Add an item.
  3. Enter an item code and description. Then select the Avalara tax code that best fits the item. A list of codes displays when you start typing.
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  4. If you can't find the code you're looking for, scroll down to the end of the suggestions list and click Browse the directory.
  5. Click Save when you're done.

After you map your item, AvaTax Update displays the information about the item on the What You Sell page.

Map many items to Avalara tax codes at once in AvaTax Update

  1. Go to Settings > Manage items with special tax treatment.
  2. Click Import items.
  3. Download the item import toolkit (a template for importing items) and the Avalara tax code list.
  4. Use the Avalara tax code list to fill out the item import toolkit.
  5. On the import items page in AvaTax Update, drag and drop or upload the item import toolkit that you just filled out.

After the file uploads, AvaTax Update displays the information about your items on the What You Sell page.

Map many items to the same Avalara tax code in AvaTax Update

  1. Go to Settings > Manage items with special tax treatment.
  2. On the What You Sell page, click the check boxes next to the items you want to map to the same Avalara tax code, and then click Assign a tax code to selected items.
  3. Enter the Avalara tax code you want to assign to the items in the Tax Code field. Under Find and select a tax code, search for the code you need.
  4. Click Save when you're done.

AvaTax Update displays the updated information about your items on the What You Sell page.

Change which Avalara tax code an item is mapped to in AvaTax Update

  1. Go to Settings > Manage items with special tax treatment.
  2. Click Details next to the item you want to change.
  3. Type the new Avalara tax code.
  4. Click Save when you're done.

AvaTax Update displays the updated information about your item on the What You Sell page.

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