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How to Get 2021 eBay Sales Data to File Your Income Tax

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How to Get 2021 eBay Sales Data to File Your Income Tax

In 1789 Ben Franklin penned that, “in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes,” which still rings true to this day. Some people may think that it is odd to compare death to taxes, but for many, filing taxes can be a very traumatic experience, especially for those running their own business for the very first time.

The pandemic has pushed far more people into the reselling world than in any other time in history, and tax time is fast approaching. For many resellers, this will be their very first time filing as self-employed, or as their own business entity.

One good thing, though, which will be helpful for those reselling on eBay, is the ease of accessing all your needed data. eBay has simplified much of the process and made available simple to follow forms, along with directions on their use. So today, I thought it would be helpful to go over where you can access and download all of your sales, fees, and tax totals that you will need to file your taxes.

Even if you plan on using an accountant you will still need to access these totals. All of your needed information can now be found in your Seller Hub under the Performance tab.

Once you are on the Performance tab, you just need to click Sales on the left side of the screen, and you will be able to select your sales data, based on the length of time you wish to view. It can be searched by the day, week, month, and year, which makes it easy to see your entire yearly figures all at once.

This is a great improvement over prior years, which required you to download many different documents from various places, which may have included the need to download some reports through PayPal as well. Now, thankfully, it is all in one place.

To see the entire prior years’ worth of data, you can simply select Last Year and then click the Generate Report button. This will produce the report, which can also be downloaded into a spreadsheet, such as Microsoft Excel, Google Documents, or any other spreadsheet application you may be using.

One thing everyone should be aware of is that some of the totals shown on eBay may be slightly different from what your downloaded spreadsheets may show. I found a few totals that were off $20 to $30 between the online version, and the downloaded version. From what eBay has stated, the downloaded documents are all correct. The online version simply may have delayed information that was not yet tallied into the report.

Another thing to keep in mind is that the ID names and column titles for some of your totals may have changed since last year. You can find a list of all the changes here on eBays Hub breakdown page under the section Sales and selling costs reports details.

All of the changes should be pretty easy to understand as well, because (in most cases) the new names or titles make far more sense than what eBay used in the past.

eBay’s new sales report does a great job of breaking down all aspects of your sales. It also includes a lot of never-before-seen information, such as repeat buyers’ percentages, so it is much more useful than just for tax purposes.

If you scroll further down the sales report, you will see a breakdown of all of your expenses. The totals are separated by the type of expense, such as shipping labels, store fees, final value fees, and etc. The downloaded version breaks these all down into columns as well, so that you can easily get any total you need. The expense breakdown is a great advancement over eBay’s prior attempts at this.

I did find it odd that some of the breakdowns found in the online version are reported slightly differently on the downloaded version, but it was fairly easy to figure out the information needed. There are two different columns on the downloaded version that you should be careful with.

One column titled: Shipping and handling paid by buyer to you, and another column titled: Shipping labels cost (Amount you paid to buy shipping labels on eBay), can be confusing to some. This is due to eBay showing both what the buyer paid you for their labels, as well as what you yourself paid for labels. Those numbers do not need to match at all. The number that matters for tax purposes will always be the amount you paid for taxes, since that will be total amount of shipping label you actually purchased.

The only other form you should need would be a copy of your 1099-K form, which can easily be found under the Payments tab in your hub. On the Payments tab, you can either click on Taxes on the left side or click on the highlighted header, to instantly pull up the report for down.

So, whether you are paying an accountant to do your taxes, or you plan on doing them yourselves, the process of gathering the required data has never been easier than now.

Disclaimer: The information provided above is to offered in order to help sellers obtain information they may need for tax-filing purposes and is not in any way meant to offer tax or legal advice.

Don Heiden on InstagramDon Heiden on Youtube
Don Heiden
Don Heiden
Don Heiden is a 30-year veteran of online reselling going back to the days of Yahoo Auctions. He runs The Auction Professor YouTube channel posting videos and content about various reselling platforms and topics, and he is a member of the eBay, Amazon, Hip, and other affiliate programs where he may earn a commission when linking to products on those sites. He can also be found on most social networks under the same name, including Instagram. He is also a published professional artist which includes works produced for The Walt Disney Company. He holds an Associate Degree in Database Design, Construction, and Network Administration. He also holds a Bachelor Degree and Master Degree of Research & Communications from The University of Toledo.

8 thoughts on “How to Get 2021 eBay Sales Data to File Your Income Tax”

  1. Its still a mess, the online sales report can be off for weeks, which is hard to do quarterly taxes. Some of us don’t have excel or know how to use it. Also if the down loaded version is so actuate why haven’t they provide the 1099 by now(29th). I can understand the wait for the mail out version but not online.

  2. I was unaware of the new Sales Data Reports until this article appeared. While it solves most problems encountered with Payments reports it is still rough around the edges. No Custom Label (SKU) is the most glaring omission from the downloaded report, which seems to be only the listing detail without the summaries. The web and download report generator claims to include foreign sites. In Payouts reports, foreign site transactions are reported and downloaded in local currencies like Euros or British Pounds.

    I had been breaking down each Payout into the gross sale amount, fees, postage, and other amounts that would sum to the payment amount. In 2020, total of gross amounts matched the 1099-K amount. In 2021, foreign transactions and an uptick in business late in the year has made the process of breaking down each payout infeasible. A recent payout included more than 300 detail lines payout breakdown totals and some amounts in the wrong column. With the new report, it should be possible to reconcile monthly and enter rolled up fees and item sales into the accounting system. If a replacement can be found, one criteria would be the ability to import downloads from eBay and PayPal.

    Unfortunately, the new reports still contain bugs. Specifying “last year” attempts to report the entire year 2022. Attempts to download reports from one account fail with “Error downloading report” in Microsoft Edge. The report for the other account downloads successfully in Google Chrome. Reports do not go back far enough. It is not possible to report the entire year 2019, Reports downloaded at the time lacked eBay collected sales tax data for part of the year. The two-year comparison of 2021 and 2020 specified as a custom report omitted 12/31/2020.

    The downloaded csv may not be useable without Excel or database skills. Like Payouts reports, extraneous lines above the headers must be moved to the end or somewhere else to produce a coherent looking spreadsheet. Ebay item numbers must be reformatted as integers. Again, as stated above, to be truly useful, the Custom Label (SKU) should be included for those who track their inventory before listing it on eBay.

    Are there other discrepancies or disconnects? This was concerning:

    “• This report ONLY includes listings sold within the selected time range. Any fees charged or credits applied to listings sold outside this time range are not included in this report. These fees and credits are included in the selling costs number shown on the Seller Hub Performance sales report dashboard.”

    I would hope to see the report-period totals for monthly store fees, insertion fees other fees not associated with a specific sale or order. during the reporting period. Subscription fees and account level fee amounts were listed as the same amount. What happened to insertion fees? What happens to postage fees paid outside the reporting period? Finally, what about refunds? Schedule C requires that total sales and refunds be listed on separate lines.

    I guess this report is still a work in progress. Will it ever be completed?

  3. What a bunch of idiots in the Ebay accounting dept. For years, it’s been extremely difficult to download any (usable) sales/tax data rerpots. And with the “new” Sales data page not matching the downloaded reports — how can this be useful (or better yet) trustworthy data??

    And to top it off, it’s impossible to get the 1099-K to match the Sales Data page in the Performance tab. That’s the real problem.

    I am relieved, however, that Ebay finally changed their sales reports from mid-month (the 15th), to the 1st thru the 30th reporting. It won’t take effect until May 2022, but they finally realized that reports generated from the 15th to the 15th were totally useless. Businesses need data on a monthly basis.

  4. I didn’t sign up (opt in) to seller hub. In fact I had to hunt the site to find it. I quit selling on ebay when they charged me to end a non performing auction. I am just manually writing down the sales I had (few) and the purchases I made. Ebay made it harder by just showing the price, and not the sale with shipping & tax as the final price. You have to click on the order to see that. I am DONE selling on ebay. I had been on since 1998. All the clowns and monkeys that run that circus can have it.

  5. Update after a second look:

    Sellers who elect to use Performance data instead of Payments data may find differences related to end-of-year transactions. Cash basis taxpayers may incorrectly report sales posted at the end of the year and paid in the following year. Accrual method taxpayers can use the sale dates from performance reports. The date funds are committed to a payout from Managed Payments can be used by cash basis taxpayers. Managed Payments reports remain difficult to process.

    Totals for gross sales and fees are missing from payout reports.

    Non-item specific costs are missing from performance reports. They could be added as separate lines at the end of the report with descriptions like “Insertion fees” and “Monthly store fees” to match the “Selling Cost” total in the web report instead of the cryptic note in a footnote above the header line in the csv file.

  6. i’m new to this, so sorry if this is a dumb question but could someone please tell me whether ebay reports to the irs as my income on their new report under seller hub-

    is it ‘net sales’ (Net of taxes and selling costs)
    or is it ‘Total sales’ (Includes taxes)

    thanks!

  7. Warning to Microsoft Edge users: “Error downloading report” message pops up after initiating a download of last year’s sales.

    The eBay 1099-K includes all sales paid (settled by Managed Payments) in the calendar year. Sales tax and VAT collected by eBay are excluded and do not figure into Schedule C income or expenses. The 1099-K for the prior year and the year before that can be found under the Payments tab at the top of the Seller Hub window in Taxes (select in the left margin). Total sales booked in the calendar year will not match unless every sale that year and in the year before was paid in the same year.

    Finally, are sales on non-US eBay sites are included in 1099-K reported income? US-only sellers should find that the sum of paid order sale prices should match the 1099-K. Sellers on multiple eBay sites who download payments transaction reports must contend with amounts entered in foreign currencies in the same columns as US dollar amounts. Unlike PayPal which zeros out foreign currency amounts and includes a converted US dollar amount, eBay leaves it to the seller’s accountant to figure out what happened. eBay flags foreign currency amounts in order level rows but fails to flag in item level rows.

  8. Nice summary, thanks Don!

    Can’t wait to get the 1099-K next year, finally, as I always experience issues generating the proper paperwork come tax time. (Serves me right for doing all my bookkeeping at once!)

    I can’t get it to download the CSV. All I get is a blank document for February despite “last year” being chosen. I guess I’ll just have to take their word for it and write down their figures off the summary. I really am a fan of CSV with all its detail. Waaaaah : (

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