I ran a very small business, doing drop shipments online.

Since I do drop-shipping, I have one receipt for every sale, which turns out to be a quite a lot of pages of invoices.

I have a credit card history that shows my purchases (one line per purchase). And I have the "My Orders" page on the website I purchase from (also one line per purchase). I printed both of those to PDF. Are these two enough if the IRS asks me to verify my Cost of Goods when I file taxes?

These documents show the order date, order number, name of person I shipped to, and the total amount. And these two documents should reconcile against each other.

Now, is that enough, or do I have to actually click on each order, and print out the whole invoice (one page per order)? That would be a huge amount of paper, but I'm a little worried that if I don't print it out, and the website I purchase from purges the older records, I'd be unable to retrieve them.

Thanks for any input.

1 Answer 1


To be on the safe side - you'll want to get the full invoice. You don't need to actually print them, you can save it as a PDF and make sure to make your own backups once in a while. Only actually print them when the IRS asks you to kill some trees and send them a paper response, and even then you can talk to the agent in charge and check if you can email the digital file instead.

The IRS won't ask for this when you file your taxes, they will only ask for this if you're under audit and they will want to actually validate the numbers on your return. You'll know when you're under audit, and who is the auditor (the agent in charge of your case). You'll also want to have some representation when that happens.

  • Ack, I was hoping I wouldn't need to do that. Save-As PDF a thousand times isn't fun. Thanks for the answer though.
    – NL3294
    Aug 8, 2016 at 22:56

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