6 GST Setting Tips in Shopify

Under the current lockdowns, businesses embracing e-commerce are thriving. Many small businesses try to catch the opportunities and set up online shops using Paypal, Shopify, Ebay, Kickstarter and Amazon. The last thing you want to ignore is the tax implications and set up the GST correctly on these apps.

If you sell goods and service in Australia, most of the time the sales are subject to GST. If you ship them to overseas, you aren’t required to charge GST. Since most of these e-commerce platforms are not only used by businesses in Australia, but tax settings are also usually done manually. If you don’t set it up correct, you may collect less money than you should, charge tax to your customers where you shouldn’t and make mistakes on your tax reporting which will bring lots of unwanted trouble.

I made the following checklist of how to set up GST correctly on Shopify since the platform itself doesn’t provide such a step-by-step guide.

  1. Set up the countries that your products will be shipping to. Click here for the steps from Shopify Support to set up the shipping zone.
  2. Set up the tax rates in the countries and regions to which you will be selling and shipping your products by going to Settings > Taxes > Tax Regions. Choose ‘’Australia’’. The default tax rate should show as 10%. If not, you need to update it.
  3. Set up the tax calculation depends on your situation by going to Settings > Taxes > Tax Calculation.
  4. If some of your products are exempt from GST, you can customize taxes for each product by going to Product > Click into the product > In the Pricing section, check/uncheck Charge taxes on this product.
  5. You can edit products in bulk by choosing the products and click editing products. Then it will navigate you to bulk editor. You can add a new field called ‘’charge taxes’’ in ‘’pricing’’ section. Check/uncheck the boxes of ‘’charge taxes’’ for each product.
  6. Note that Shopify doesn’t file or remit any taxes for you. You need to engage with your tax accountant for the calculation and lodgement.

We hope this article is found helpful. You need to do this before you make the first sell. If you are unsure about your tax obligations, please contact us directly for further advice. We are always here for you and your business.


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