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Sales tax calculation on Squarespace


AniaThorpe

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Hi!

I am at my wits end with trying to figure out a better way to set up sales taxes on my squarespace e-commerce page. I already know Squarespace unfortunately fails in this area majorly. I feel like I will have to move to a different platform if I cannot figure out some way of automating the sales tax calculation without having to enter a sales tax rate for every zip code/zip code range manually.

Does the TaxJar integration with Stripe Orders API solve the problem with sales tax calculation at check out by some miracle? Is anyone familiar with that? Any words of wisdom will be much appreciated!

Ania

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Same here, I literally created this forum account to just let everyone know - there is no way you can run a legal business on Squarespace. Why? Sales tax is not automated. It is simply not possible for anyone to enter in 2500+ zip codes for their home state (even more states if you have more than one nexus) . To make matters worse most zip codes have multiple tax rates. I saw someone recommend charging the highest rate your state has which is a terrible idea. Both undercharging and overcharging can get you in trouble with your state sales tax agency even if you refund the difference afterwards. It even opens you up to a class action lawsuit from your own customers! My advice? Head over to Shopify. Long gone are the days where their builder was complicated and hard to use. It’s almost as easy as Squarespace now, and both sales tax and shipping rates are automated for even cheaper than Squarespace’s e-commerce plan. The worst part about this whole situation is people have been asking Squarespace for this for years and they completely ignore the request and even claim that they have never heard about this request. BS!!! Also to answer your question TaxJar & Avalara do not edit your sales tax rates for your checkout. All they do is file your sales tax return for you. 

Edited by Mr305moneybags
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  • 2 weeks later...

I have spoken to TaxJar about a week ago and they told me they are about to release an integration for Squarespace that would solve this problem. They said they are weeks away from it. For know, my problem is fixed because Illinois where I am based is an origin-based sales tax state, meaning I charge my local tax rate to everyone in the state of Illinois. Once we start getting more sales out of state and start having economic nexus in other states, then we will either have to get that TaxJar integration or move to a different platform (likely the latter, as I have learned Squarespace disappoints in many other aspects of e-commerce).

So my current fix to avoid having to add thousands of zips was adding Illinois as the state I collect taxes in and setting the state sales tax rate amount as my combined (state + local) sales tax rate.

Hope this helps.

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I ended up just leaving SquareSpace to Shopify because of this. I am really bummed because the website builder is so much easier and cleaner looking, but it’s an absolute deal breaker to not have this done automatically. We shouldn’t need a plug-in for taxes. If they want to be an actual e-commerce platform they have to figure this out. I tried working w TaxJar - they’re really nice, but it didn’t work yet and I don’t have time to wait it out. 

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Literally having the exact same issue. Trying to set up different options for quite a few things, and it's not viable. Taxes are a huge issue that I wasn't even aware of, since this is my first e-commerce go-around. I also spoke with TaxJar, and they didn't mention anything about an integration for tax calculation. I want to wait and see if they set it up, but I don't think can wait. Nervous about shopify, though...

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I  am furious at squarespace about this. I would have never spent all this money and all this time building a site if I knew about this tax situation. The support team won't even tell you if the site you made on their platform is legal. This is my first attempt with an online store and they won't explain what I need to do for taxes in NC per their terms and conditions. Told me to hire a tax advisor or lawyer. So I'm beyond lost and they refuse to help. I'm in the process of canceling my account and moving my domain. I don't want to wait weeks to maybe have a solution right before the holidays.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I just set up my TaxJar account and am using the free trail after reading this forum. TaxJar integrates with SquareSpace in terms of calculating the sales tax you need to pay and appears pretty seamless. So at least you'll be compliant on the sales tax payment, just not always charging the correct amount of sales tax at checkout from the customer. Looks like TaxJar's transaction reporting and analytics could potentially warn you if you were charging too much or too little though. I think SquareSpace is still a great site to use for selling and shipping physical products in "origin-based" states like California that we are based in.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I consolidated my Shopify and Squarespace website and moved everything over to SS. I imported my products and then got stuck on the Sales Tax situation in Squarespace. Unbelievable. I am not entering all the NY zip codes and rates, that's insulting for an e-commerce solution. Ok, so I tested the "include sales tax" option. So now Squarespace calculates the tax included, based on the zip code, but the rates are wrong.  My zip code has an 8.375% sales tax, and Squarespace calculates it as 8.74%. No jurisdiction in NY has that rate. If I take a Yonkers, NY zip code. I get 8.375% sales tax included, but that zip code has 8.75% sales tax. This is madness. It looks like I now have to manually enter every transaction into QuickBooks and fix the tax calculations there. The tax calculations in Squarespace are worthless. How are you guys dealing with this? 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi everybody . Lol, I'm not the only one, ha ha. I also heard information that TaxJar wants to implement integration with Squarespace, I have serious problems with this and I could not wait, so I found another service for calculating the tax.I couldn't understand why the calculator shows false information, my friend recommended it to me https://taxfyle.com/sales-tax-calculator and I normally counted my taxes, thereby finding out and solving my problems , so I advise you to check your taxes on several sources and calculate not once, but several times. I wish you good luck in your business and a lot of money 🙂

Edited by DavisIT
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  • 4 weeks later...

Wow, what a headache! I've been doing a ton of research and trying to get my taxes in order for 2020, and just learned about California's Marketplace Facilitator Act.

To keep it short, SS is not legally compliant as far as any sales made by customers in California or to California-based sellers, because SS is not collecting and remitting sales tax per California state law.  (More info here: https://cdtfa.ca.gov/industry/MPFAct.htm) 

There might be other states with similar requirements, but with California being the largest economy in the US, it seems like a pretty big issue to ignore. All of the other sites I sell through are in compliance and collect and remit sales tax properly: Etsy, Big Cartel, Shopify...

I don't know if anything will come of my email (hopefully it will), but it seems like I'll have to move my shop to another site to avoid the legal vulnerability.

I also just saw that SS privately filed for stock market listing this week...Seems like you'd want to get all of your taxes and legal obligations in order first, no?

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  • 2 weeks later...

Just got told by squarespace customer service that I somehow signed up for the program for new users and now don't get to utilize the service and can just go ahead and pay for it or manually enter everything and then sign up for the waitlist. 

If I would have known that squarespace doesn't support running a legal online sales business I would NEVER have started setting up my store here.

What TERRIBLE customer service and product development.

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Just got off the line with customer service - apparently I somehow signed up for the beta program for new users wrong and now I don't get to utilize the service - Square Space response is summed up as "Can't do anything about it - sign up for the waitlist"... what the ****? Like TONS of other users here on the forums I've too late found out that Square Space has made little to no effort to correct their lack of sales tax tools despite collecting an incredible amount of money from users. I'll have to start looking for somewhere to move my site and business if Square Space doesn't resolve the situation (which from reviewing other forum posts Square Space unfortunately does not appear to give a darn about hiding this problem until it is too late for users). Any pointers other than paying an incredible amount of money to TaxJar for a service squarespace told me I'd have access to for free would be great!

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 3 weeks later...

I'm so glad to have finally found this thread!! I thought I was missing something this whole time...I mean, if I'm planning on selling throughout however many states want to buy from me, it's impossible to hand-type all potential zip codes in advance! And what about the places whose tax varies within a zip code like mentioned in this article? https://www.avalara.com/us/en/learn/whitepapers/zip-codes-the-wrong-tool-for-the-job.html I'm really hoping the TaxJar extension/add-on goes well and becomes available for Business plans as well (rather than just Commerce) eventually once Squarespace realizes how necessary this is...saw on another thread that for feedback to be logged by the developers, anyone interested needs to submit a customer service ticket on the matter, which I will definitely be doing in hopes of encouraging the idea. 

Anyway, I'm brand-new to ecommerce in regards to my personal store, so I'm hoping someone with experience can help me with this while we wait. Is it possible to put a disclaimer along the lines of "Sales tax is not included in featured prices and will be added to the final cost in accordance to your state/local requirements," see who is trying to place an order and where they are located and THEN using the billing information, manually create the tax rule specifically for their order? Or does the rule have to exist before the order is placed? Does the manual entry allow for those aforementioned differences in the same zip to be accounted for (if we do our research to find the proper percentage) or is it zip code populated only? This could potentially only work for sites with low traffic but I'm wondering if it's possible? Not sure how you're alerted of/review new orders, how to manage charges/refunds, etc yet, still have a lot of learning to do. Any advice is appreciated! 

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Hi Folks, 

I am pretty frustrated as well.  I have built a beautiful site for a Bakery who wished to take orders online for pick up.  No shipping etc.   I entered the state they are in, the tax rate and hit "save" and it does not work.   Since the items are being picked up in the state, wouldn't I only need the tax rate for that state?   Am I missing something, some setting button to toggle on?   

Thanks!

Kelly

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  • 4 weeks later...

I am seriously freaking out about this.  

How is this not plastered all over the internet to warn people of this issue??  

I just finished a website for a client.  He loves it.  And now we find out he can't sell his products out of state through eCommerce?  I even set up an account with Tax Jar... doesn't work yet??   

Wow.  Mind is blown.  

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On 2/9/2021 at 3:52 PM, recordsandprint said:

Just got off the line with customer service - apparently I somehow signed up for the beta program for new users wrong and now I don't get to utilize the service - Square Space response is summed up as "Can't do anything about it - sign up for the waitlist"... what the ****? Like TONS of other users here on the forums I've too late found out that Square Space has made little to no effort to correct their lack of sales tax tools despite collecting an incredible amount of money from users. I'll have to start looking for somewhere to move my site and business if Square Space doesn't resolve the situation (which from reviewing other forum posts Square Space unfortunately does not appear to give a darn about hiding this problem until it is too late for users). Any pointers other than paying an incredible amount of money to TaxJar for a service squarespace told me I'd have access to for free would be great!

WOW.  My mind is blown.  I had no idea.  Have used SS for years for other clients, but never eCommerce.  My fault for not digging into the corners of the internet to discover they can't even handle this type of website!!

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  • 1 month later...

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