The Supreme Court and Sales Tax: What You Need to Know

The Supreme Court and Sales Tax: What You Need to KnowFor online retailers, few issues are as confusing and cumbersome as understanding sales tax obligations in various states. Most companies either try to find an automated solution or stick their heads in the sand and hope for the best. In the face of this complexity, the Supreme Court recently agreed to hear South Dakota v. Wayfair, Inc., which challenges the high court’s 1992 decision in Quill Corp. v. North Dakota. If the court sides with South Dakota and overturns Quill, the impact will likely be significant and, at least in the short run, expose many more sellers to today’s sales tax compliance complexity.What you need to know about #SCOTUS and #salestax. #ecommerce @avalara #Unify Click To Tweet

What is Quill and Why Does it Exist?

Much like today, the late 1980s was a time when states were actively seeking ways to get retailers to collect sales tax everywhere. Many states adopted new use tax nexus laws, and a plan developed to find a way to get the U.S. Supreme Court to reconsider a 1967 decision declaring that physical presence was the constitutional test for sales tax collection. In the early 1990s, Heidi Heitkamp, North Dakota’s tax commissioner, filed suit against Quill Corporation, an office supply retailer, to get Quill to collect North Dakota’s use tax on sales made to North Dakota residents. Continue reading

Accounting Just Got Easier for Amazon Sellers on Xero

 Post navigation Accounting Just Got Easier for Amazon Sellers on XeroJust click once to settle your accounting!

Making sense of fees and other costs can be a frustrating experience for Amazon sellers. Now a new enhancement to Webgility Unify simplifies accounting for Xero users who sell on Amazon. With Webgility 1-Click Accounting, it’s now fast and easy for sellers to post Amazon Marketplace orders, refunds, expenses, and payments into Xero.

In fact, Unify users can now swiftly reconcile their Xero accounting with their Amazon Settlement Report, eliminating the need for any additional data entry or a separate clearing account. Webgility Unify automatically syncs the Amazon Settlement Report with Xero, making batch reconciliation easy for both sellers and accountants. “Managing a business’ finances from a central dashboard is a far more beautiful experience,” says Steven Larsen, Product Partnerships Director at Xero.Click once to settle! Accounting just got easier for @Amazon sellers who use @Xero #Unify Click To Tweet

Xero offers an open app ecosystem that gives users an opportunity to select technology that best suits their needs as their company grows. Webgility Unify’s integration with Xero enables small business owners and their advisors to track sales and automate accounting across online marketplaces and ecommerce tools.” Continue reading

4 Ways to Improve Your Amazon Listing’s Best Seller Ranking

4 Ways to Improve Your Amazon Listing’s Best Seller RankingSimple tasks that will help you climb the Amazon ladder to higher profits.

Your Amazon Best Seller Ranking is a significant factor in determining where you appear in product searches which, of course, can have a serious impact on your bottom line. A high best seller ranking increases your visibility and puts your product in front of a wider range of potential customers and increases the likelihood that you will make a sale.

But here’s the thing, Amazon’s search algorithm can create a bit of a closed loop. A high volume of sales is one of the factors that determines the ranking. Sellers with a high ranking are more likely to appear on the first page of a search which increases the likelihood that people will buy from them, further improving their ranking, their search results, and conversion rate—then around and around we go.

If you’re not currently one of the sellers caught up in this beneficial cycle, there are several steps you can take to improve your listing’s best seller ranking and start earning more money. Sales and conversion rates are not the only factors considered for the best seller ranking. Amazon also bases this number on relevancy and customer satisfaction. If you are able to improve your listings and the customer experience, sales will follow close behind, and your seller ranking will start to climb. Here’s what you can do:

1. Write Good Content
When writing the description for your listing, do not forget about the customer. Yes, listing optimization is crucial but it must be done well. It cannot just be a jumble of keywords that make little to no sense. You want an optimized listing that will appear in a product search, but you also want to make a sale. Write for a conversion and not just a computer algorithm. The algorithm is not buying your product, people are.@Webgility guest blog by @SellersChoice: 4 Ways to Improve Your Amazon Listing’s Best Seller Ranking… Click To Tweet

When it comes to your title, it is important to include as many keywords as possible but do not just throw them in without thinking. Your listing’s title should include all the information a potential customer needs to understand exactly what your product is. It should include the name of the product, what it does, materials used, its size and color (if relevant), as well as potential benefits and uses. Put your primary keywords near the front of the title and be concise when describing benefits and features, you will go into more detail about those in your product description.

In writing your product description, keep potential buyers in mind at all times. Do not just list specs and features, engage the reader. What would you want to know about this product before you buy it? Try to answer any questions buyers may have before they have them. Be sure to indicate what makes your product special. If you are able to use A+ Plus Pages or Enhanced Brand Content, it’s wise to do so. These platforms provide the opportunity to create a more impressive product listing by giving you more space for your product description, the ability to change your layout, the capacity for more photos and the use of charts and graphs. It gives you the space to demonstrate why your product is the product. Remember, Amazon users are shoppers. They already want to buy the product, you just need to convince them to buy it from you.

2. Do Keyword Research
Keywords are important for improving your visibility on Amazon. Choosing relevant keywords is the easiest way to find yourself at, or near, the top of any search results. If you are having a hard time determining your keywords, try using Google Keyword Planner or other similar tools.

It is also useful to spend a little time checking out your competition. Search the keywords you are using and see what comes up. If products similar to yours appear in the results, you’re on the right track. Study these results. Look at top sellers in your category and niche and see what they’re doing. Do their listings contain keywords that yours is missing? Continue reading

NEW FEATURE: 1-Click Accounting for Amazon

Webgility 1-Click Accounting for AmazonEcommerce sellers have been asking, and today we’re delivering.

We’re thrilled to announce a fast and easy way to settle and sync Amazon deposits and costs with QuickBooks Online or Xero. Webgility 1-Click Accounting for Amazon is a new enhancement to our Webgility Unify software that allows sellers of all sizes to automatically post Amazon orders, refunds, expenses, and payments into accounting software. In doing so, this feature eliminates the need for any additional data entry or a separate clearing account.

Why does this matter so much to Amazon sellers? Because settling up properly is a key making more money on the world’s biggest marketplace. And since most Amazon sellers operate with wire-thin margins, they need to have more visibility into sales, fees, and returns in order to turn a profit. Amazon sellers also need detailed information in their trend reports, in a much more granular fashion than they can get from Amazon. Webgility Unify provides sellers with automation, data analytics and business insights to help them reduce data entry costs, improve margins, and drive higher ROI on Amazon.

Because the Amazon Settlement Report contains settled, unsettled orders, and refunds from previous sales cycles and is only delivered by Amazon every two weeks, it’s difficult for sellers to reconcile their accounts between reports. This forces the creation (and maintenance) of a separate clearing account for Amazon sales that come in during that period. Webgility 1-Click Accounting allows sellers to instantly—and automatically—settle in accounting all in one batch once they receive their Amazon Settlement Report.NEW 1-Click #Accounting for @Amazon--a fast, easy way to settle costs with @QuickBooks or @Xero #Unify Click To Tweet

Webgility Unify makes reconciliation easy for both sellers and their accountants. With Webgility 1-Click Accounting, Amazon sellers can now see a complete list of orders from the current settlement period, whether they’ve received payment from Amazon, and what Amazon has charged them in fees and expenses.

With Webgility 1-Click Accounting Amazon, sellers can:

  • Automatically post Amazon orders, refunds, expenses, and payments as a batch directly into QuickBooks or Xero
  • Instantly reconcile the seller’s accounting with their Amazon Settlement Report with no additional data entry
  • Sync Amazon sales and refunds daily—individually or as a batch
  • Track Amazon fees/expenses as separate transactions or records them as one line item
  • Sync historic data from Amazon Settlement Reports going back 120 days

For an even deeper dive into this new feature, join our CEO, Parag Mamnani on a webinar on February 22, 2018 at 10 a.m. PST / 1 p.m. EST: Mission Possible—Easy Amazon Reconciliation.

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How to Conquer Amazon

Webgility 1-Click Accounting for AmazonHint: Just take it one Settlement Report at a time

I get this question a lot: “What are the biggest hurdles SMBs come up against when considering selling on Amazon?”

SMBs are often intimidated by the prospect of selling on Amazon, but the exposure Amazon offers is beyond anything else in the market. And because hefty Amazon fees add up quickly, it’s hard to actually turn a profit. In fact, many sell on Amazon just for the exposure and consider themselves lucky to break even in the end. But it doesn’t have to be that way—because Amazon sellers operate with such wire-thin margins, they must make sure those margins are fully optimized. How so? #SMB tip: The secret to conquering @Amazon? Take it 1 Settlement Report at a time. #Unify #Staytuned… Click To Tweet

From a high level, lack of visibility into Amazon margins in real time is one of the great hurdles SMBs must overcome to make it work, and the secret lies in the Amazon Settlement Report. Because Amazon delivers this report every 14 days, the typical seller needs to create a separate clearing account for deposits that come in while they wait for their Amazon actuals. Once it arrives, the seller has to manually input all those details into QuickBooks or Xero, which can introduce costly errors and confuse an otherwise tidy accounting system. When Amazon reconciliation is handled properly—and, ideally, automated—a seller can stop all the data entry, no longer ballpark these important numbers, and finally settle up with confidence.

Webgility Unify software eliminates the need for manual data entry and ensures that sellers’ data—financials, inventory, and shipping—is totally accurate and timely. This vastly improves the experience for sellers and their trusted advisors, because they can focus on learning from their data to gain insights to use strategically in real time. Our goal is to help all sellers—including those on Amazon—build sustainable businesses that grow instead of just maintaining back-end operations. I believe 2018 will be a tremendous year for ecommerce sellers, especially those who seek solutions with technology. When you’re ready, we’re here to help. 
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