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Making The Switch To Digital: How Vat Returns Online Could Change Your Business For The Better

Vat Returns


As technology advances and more businesses switch to digital methods of operation, the impact on how we do business is becoming increasingly evident. In this article, we explore how the implementation of a vat return online system could change the way your business operates for the better. Find out why making the switch to digital could be beneficial for you and your business!

Introduction to the Digital Tax System

Making the switch to digital tax returns could be one of the best decisions your business ever makes. Not only will it save you time and money, but it will also make it easier to keep track of your finances and ensure that you always stay compliant with the latest tax regulations.

The first step is to register for a digital tax account with HMRC.  Once you have registered, you will be able to login to your account and start completing your tax returns.

The digital tax system is designed to be simple and straightforward, so you should find that it is quick and easy to complete your returns. However, if you do have any questions or need help with anything, there is plenty of support available from HMRC. You can also speak to an accountant or bookkeeper if you need more advice on making the switch to digital tax returns.

How Does the Vat Return Online Work?

If your business is based in the UK, you’re probably already familiar with the Value Added Tax, or VAT. This tax is levied on most goods and services within the country, and businesses are required to charge it on their products and services. They can then claim back any VAT they have paid on their own purchases. 

Previously, businesses would submit paper VAT returns to HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC). This is a time-consuming and error-prone process. Now, businesses can submit their VAT returns online through HMRC’s website. 

The online VAT return process is simple. Businesses first need to register for an account on HMRC’s website. Once they have done so, they can login and fill in their return. The return must include information on the total value of sales and purchases made during the period, as well as the amount of VAT due or to be refunded. 

Once the return has been submitted, businesses will receive a confirmation email from HMRC.  If there are any errors in the return, HMRC will contact the business directly. 

The move to online VAT returns is part of HMRC’s wider goal of making tax simpler and more efficient for businesses. By moving to this digital system, businesses can save time and money on their tax returns.

Benefits of Making the Switch to Digital Returns

If you’re not already using digital returns for your business, now is the time to make the switch. Here are just a few of the benefits you’ll enjoy:

  1. Increased efficiency – With digital returns, you can say goodbye to paper forms and manual data entry. Returns can be filed quickly and easily online, meaning you’ll save time and improve your overall efficiency.
  1. Cost savings – Paper forms and postage can be expensive. By filing digital returns, you’ll eliminate these costs and save money in the long run.
  1. Improved accuracy – With online filing, there’s no risk of lost or misfiled paperwork. All of your data will be securely stored in one place, so you can rest assured that your return will be filed correctly.
  1. Greater convenience – Online filing is convenient for both you and your customers. Customers can file their return from anywhere at any time, and you can manage all of your returns in one central location.

Common Challenges & Questions When Making the Transition

When making the transition to digital VAT returns, businesses may face some challenges and questions. Here are some common ones:

How do I know if my business is eligible to file digital VAT returns?

To be eligible to file digital VAT returns, your business must meet the following criteria: have a valid VAT number, be registered for VAT in the UK, and have a Government Gateway account. If you’re not sure if your business meets these criteria, you can check with HMRC.

What information do I need to provide when filing digital VAT returns?

When you file digital VAT returns, you’ll need to provide information such as your VAT registration number, the period covered by the return, and the total value of sales and purchases during that period. You can find more detailed information on what you need to provide in HMRC’s guidance on Making Tax Digital for VAT.

Preparing for a Smoother Transition to Digital Returns

If your business isn’t already using digital returns for your VAT, then you’re likely to be feeling the pressure to make the switch. The good news is, making the transition to digital returns is relatively straightforward – and it could even end up saving you time and money in the long run. Here are a few tips to help you prepare for a smoother transition to digital returns:

  1. Check that your accounting software is compatible with Making Tax Digital (MTD). If it isn’t, you’ll need to switch to software that is compatible before you can start filing your VAT returns online.
  1. Get familiar with the MTD service itself. You’ll need to create an account and register for MTD in order to file your VAT returns online. The process is relatively simple, but it’s worth taking some time to familiarise yourself with the service before you get started.
  1. Make sure you have all the necessary information to hand. When you file your VAT return online, you’ll need to provide details of your turnover, expenses and other relevant information. Make sure you have all of this information readily available before you start the process, so that it doesn’t slow you down.
  1. Allow some extra time for your first return. It’s always a good idea to allow yourself a little extra time when filing any kind of tax return – especially if it’s something new that you’re not completely familiar with yet.


Making the switch to digital VAT returns is a great way for businesses of all sizes to streamline their processes, save time and money, and improve accuracy. With more than two million people already using online VAT returns services in the UK alone, there’s no doubt that this technology can revolutionise the way you do business. All it takes is taking a few simple steps towards making your business more efficient – starting with making the switch to digital Vat Returns Online!

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