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Accounting for online marketplace fees when using Cash Basis

zorillo
Posts: 4
Joined: Mon Jan 16, 2017 3:39 pm

Accounting for online marketplace fees when using Cash Basis

Postby zorillo » Fri Jan 05, 2018 3:52 pm

Hi. I'm in a Partnership and we sell on online marketplaces and use cash basis accounting. I was just looking for an opinion on whether the way I am accounting for income from these sites is acceptable.

So, for example, probably the most complicated marketplace is Etsy. When someone buys something we do not get paid immediately. Instead the sale price minus a transaction fee gets added to our Etsy 'balance'. This balance is then paid out to our bank account once a week. Every month Etsy also generates a 'bill' which covers their sales fees for the preceeding month. We most often pay this bill from the balance.

I assume, even though we are using cash basis, that it is not correct to simply record our income as the balance payments that hit our bank account? While profit is unaffected this would lower our income as the two types of fees are already taken off the balance payments. The fees would simply not appear in our accounts.

Therefore I am instead recording an income entry every time we're paid (which does not reflect the amount we actually received but instead the amount we would have received if there were zero fees) along with one or two expenses entries for the fees we've paid in the time period the payment relates to.

So, for example, week 1st Jan to 7th Jan we make sales of £1000. Transaction fees are 5% on every sale so our Etsy balance would be £950. However we also pay a £200 December sales fees bill on 3rd Jan from our Etsy balance. The amount that actually hits our account on 10th Jan is therefore £750. I record an income entry on 10th Jan for £1000. I also record two expenses entries on the 10th Jan, one for £50, the other for £200.

Does that sound reasonable? Essentially I'm rolling up both the sales and the fees and only accounting for them on the day we actually receive the balance payments as that would seem to be in the spirit of cash basis.

Thanks!

zorillo
Posts: 4
Joined: Mon Jan 16, 2017 3:39 pm

Re: Accounting for online marketplace fees when using Cash Basis

Postby zorillo » Mon Jan 08, 2018 6:30 pm

I've since realised this probably wasn't the most appropriate place to ask this question and have been discussing it elsewhere. Unfortunately I can't seem to edit or delete the post. Mods please feel free to remove it.


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