Getting Your Books Ready for Santa

books-santaAt part 1 of our “Christmas in July” webinar series, I gave it to you straight: “Don’t be a victim of your own success.” Yes, it sounds like a luxury problem, but we’ve seen it take down many an e-commerce business. The scenario goes something like this: Sales are booming, orders are coming in, and then the holiday season hits. Suddenly inventory disappears and there’s no way to keep up. This leads to unfulfilled orders which lead to bad customer reviews on Amazon or eBay. Bad reviews cause a drop in the rankings, and all of a sudden that flood of orders somes to a dead stop. It’s very important to scale your business to meet the holiday demand, otherwise things can go sideways fast. Here are a few ways to properly prep your books for holiday sales:

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Good Times Roll for Affiliates

gI_87197_mardi-gras-eAt this week’s Scaling New Heights (Intuit/Woodward Events) conference in New Orleans, our travel team shared some important news: We’re improving and expanding our Webgility Affiliate Program! Effective immediately, participating Affiliates will provide value-added services to e-commerce sellers using eCC software. As an added benefit, Affiliates will have access to the Webgility QuickBooks Premier Reseller License, which means Affiliates can offer their clients the same great pricing for QuickBooks products that Webgility has negotiated. What’s more, Webgility Affiliates receive a 28% commission on all QuickBooks Enterprise sales. This exciting development allows our Affiliates to better serve their clients by providing essential tools for full compliance and e-commerce business success, which includes Webgility eCC software.

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Webgility K.O. at IRCE 2015

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If you’re in Chicago at IRCE this week, please stop by to meet the Webgility team in person at Booth 1930. Along with participating partners, we’ve created a fun game to show e-tailers how we’re in their corner to defeat  “data-entry time suck” through e-commerce accounting automation. Entrants who collect stamps and visit Webgility (1930), Intuit (1583), Endicia (1429), and X-cart (1774) are entered to win an Apple Watch. Directly connecting with both partners and customers helps us improve our eCC software and customer service, so we hope to see you there. And if we miss you at IRCE, please stay tuned for our exciting plans for Scaling New Heights in New Orleans on June 21-24.

—The Webgility Marketing Team

Holiday Shipping: How to make sure your customers get their orders on time

Santa Claus has it easy. With a workshop full of elves making and wrapping presents, and magic reindeer to fly him around the world, he doesn’t have to worry whether or not little children will wake up to presents under the tree. Online retailers, however, aren’t so lucky. Not only do you have to make and stock your products, you have to deal with the hassle of getting them to customers during the busiest shipping time of the year.

With 44% of Americans shopping online last year, and more than 40% of them waiting to start their holiday shopping until December1, e-commerce businesses have unique challenges during the holiday rush. If you don’t have your own elves and reindeer, here are three things that you can you do to prepare for the holiday season and make sure that your customers get their orders on time.

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Does my online business need to collect sales tax?

Benjamin Franklin by Joseph Siffrein Duplessis

Benjamin Franklin famously noted that the only things you can be sure of in life are “death and taxes.” What he didn’t count on when he said this was the implementation of the sales tax and the resulting questions you may find yourself asking as an online retailer. In the most general of terms, if you’re in the business of selling anything, you may have to pay this particular tax. Here are four questions to ask about your business to determine your sales tax liability:

Question 1: Is it a business or a hobby?

First off, are you actually operating a business, at least in in the eyes of the Internal Revenue Service? If your store is very small or not making any money, the IRS might categorize it as a hobby. Hobbies don’t have to collect sales tax, but they also can’t claim any losses as deductions

The IRS considers an activity a business  if “it is carried on with the reasonable expectation of earning a profit.” Even if you aren’t currently making a profit, if you’re spending significant time, effort, and money on your eCommerce endeavor, the needle points towards the business category.
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