Why was I charged that?: Your bill, taxes, and VAT explained
⭐️ This article applies to anyone on our pay-per-channel pricing, released to new customers in August of 2021. If you're a customer on our Pro, Premium, or Business plans, this article won't yet apply to your bill. We'll send over more information soon about how to move to our pay-per-channel pricing.
⭐️ The tax information applies to all customers living in the listed jurisdictions.
Buffer pricing is based upon the exact number of social channels you have connected to your account at any given time, so you only pay for what you need. This means that every time you connect or disconnect a social channel from Buffer, your invoice will automatically adjust, and your credit card will automatically be charged for the new total.
This article contains the following sections:
- An overview of your Buffer invoice
- Billing for customers paying monthly
- Billing for customers paying annually
- What happens when I remove social channels?
- How taxes and VAT work with your Buffer account
An overview of your Buffer invoice
Your Buffer invoice will include the total amount paid for the billing period, as well as all individual adjustments to your bill. Each adjustment to your pricing for adding or removing social channels will be reflected as a line item in your invoice.
Also on your invoice, you’ll see any credits or discounts applied to that month.
📝 Your billing dates always remain the same, even if your plan was altered by adding or removing social channels. So, if you are on a monthly plan and your free trial moved to the paid plan on March 17th, your bill will always come on the 17th of each month. If you are on the annual plan, and your free trial moved to the paid annual plan on January 21st, your billing period would always be January 21st of this year through January 20th of the following year.
Billing for customers paying monthly
As a customer paying monthly, whenever you add a new channel, you'll be charged immediately.
Billing for customers paying annually
While the payment for additional social channels added to a monthly plan show on the next month's bill, changes to your annual plan result in an immediate charge. If paying annually, whenever you add a new social channel, you’ll immediately be charged a prorated amount for that channel in order to pay for that channel’s use across the remainder of your billing period.
As an example, if you are on the Team plan, your social channels are each $120/year. If you start your billing period on June 1st with five social channels connected, your bill will be $600 for the year.
Let’s say that six months later, on December 1st, you connect three more social channels. Right then, you will be charged for the prorated use of those social channels between December 1st and the end of your billing period; June 1st. Since we’re using nice clean numbers here, each of those three new social channels would come out to exactly half of the normal annual social channel cost, which is $60 each. The total, then, on December 1st would come to $180.
Now let’s look at a real example.
This customer started their annual plan on June 29th with four social channels. On July 27th, they added one more social channel, to equal five total social channels on their annual plan.
Here’s a breakdown of those line items:
- The first line item is the prorated charge for the remainder of the year on a Team plan for 5 social channels. The prorated cost from July 27th through June 29th of the following year is $554.57.
- The second line item reflects the subtraction of the original plan, which was the Team plan for four social channels. The prorated deduction from July 27th to June 29th of the following year comes out to -$443.65.
When those two line items are added together, the final mid-billing period payment is created. The final cost for this customer to add an additional social channel to their existing annual plan came to $110.92.
What happens when I remove social channels?
Just as we charge in prorated amounts when you add social channels, we apply credits in prorated amounts when you remove social channels.
On the monthly plan, your credit will be applied to next month's bill.
On the annual plan, your credit will be applied to next year's bill. However, it's important to note that if--over the year-- you add more social channels than you remove, the credit might be absorbed by the charges incurred due to your social channel additions.
How taxes and VAT work with your Buffer account
Is my Buffer account subject to tax?
Buffer currently only collects taxes on paid plans in the jurisdictions listed below:
USA sales tax
- Currently or in the near future, these states are or will be subject to applicable state sales tax:
- New York,
- West Virginia,
- District of Columbia, and
- Rhode Island
- Buffer is an incorporated company based in the United States. American companies or individuals that need a W-9 for tax purposes can download a signed one here: 2023 W-9.
- We are a U.S. organization that has a tax-exempt number. How do I update our invoice? You cannot manually update accounts to include tax-exempt numbers. Please contact our Customer Advocacy team at email@example.com with 1) proof of your 501(c)3 status, and 2) your EIN/Tax ID number, and we'll be happy to update your account for you.
- Buffer applies the local standard Value-Added Tax (VAT) rate for B2C customer located in the United Kingdom. B2B customers may be eligible for VAT exclusion through reverse charge. You can enter your VAT number to have VAT excluded from your invoice.
- Billing addresses in the UK, where VAT is applicable, will incur standard VAT charges on your Buffer invoice unless a VAT number is entered at check-out.
- Buffer’s VAT number in the United Kingdom is: 430269025
- We are a UK organization that doesn't pay VAT, but we don't have a VAT number (or our VAT number isn't recognized): Please contact our Customer Advocacy team at firstname.lastname@example.org with proof of your VAT-exempt status, and we'll get your account marked as exempt.
- In my country taxes are included. Why am I seeing taxes exclusive of pricing? All of our pricing is tax exclusive, meaning you will see a line on your invoice for applicable taxes. We value transparency at Buffer and our aim is to be as transparent about our pricing as possible.
📝 Sales Tax legislation is subject to periodic change. Buffer reviews our sales tax compliance obligations regularly to keep up with changes. We may change our application of sales tax as required by law. All of our pricing is tax exclusive, meaning you will see a line on your invoice for applicable taxes.