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How to set New Zealand GST for a WordPress WooCommerce website

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woocommerce nz

We work with WooCommerce for our NZ website customers who want to run Ecommerce. WooCommerce is a plugin for WordPress that adds Ecommerce functionality, whether it be selling products, selling online courses, taking bookings for appointments, or paying for:

  • vouchers
  • services
  • tickets
  • memberships

Set up WooCommerce for NZ GST in 5 minutes

1. Install the WooCommerce plugin and run the basic setup steps (we’re assuming that you have the latest versions of WordPress and WooCommerce and that your WordPress theme is compatible with WooCommrce too  Not sure?  Get us to check!)

2. Go to WooCommerce > Settings > General and set New Zealand as the base country.  Then set NZ Dollars as the curency of the website. Save your changes!

3. Go to the Tax tab and tick the first box to enable taxes. Decide whether you will be entering prices inclusive or exclusive of GST.  For a simple set up, we recommend entering prices inclusive of GST when setting up your products.  WooCommerce will calculate the GST for your customers at checkout.

nz-tax-gst-woocommerce

If you’re selling only within NZ, things are simple to set up.  Calculate Tax based on the Customer Shipping Address.  Then choose how you want to display prices in the shop – most of our clients selling within New Zealand use the “inclusive” option. Save your work!

4. Next click the blue link near the top for ‘Standard Rates’.  Insert a row and add the country code “NZ”.  Add 15% for the Rate % option, and GST for the Tax name.  For Shipping – if you check the box, GST will be added to any shipping costs you charge, so you will need to enter them exclusive of GST (this can be a pain, but WooCommerce doesn’t offer another option to enter shipping inclusive of GST).

woocommerce-gst-nz

Save your work!

5. Now test it out – add some items to your cart, add shipping options (if required) and see how WooCommerce calculates your totals, and your GST.

Use the handy GST calculator at www.gstcalculator.co.nz to check your calculations.

6. If you’re offering sales to other countries you won’t be charging them GST. The above setup defaults to charging GST only to orders with NZ based shipping addresses.  We’ve been advised that goods being sent overseas do not incur GST, so this setting is based on where the recipient of the goods is located.  As with any tax issues, please double check this with your tax advisor and the IRD to be 100% sure.

Now you’re all set to sell in NZ with WooCommerce!

This article covers basic set up, but please test everything a few times in different scenarios.  Your version of WordPress, version of WooCommerce, different plugins, different themes and customisations can all have an effect on how your Ecommerce system will run and whether it will behave!

If we’ve missed anything or if you find something incorrect in this guide, please let us know asap so we can sort it out – we’d love to hear from you.