In this article, you’ll learn how to manage your business spending like a pro, and make money out of it.
Businesses make money by subtracting income from expenses. Everyone knows how profits and costs management works. But there are a few surprises about business expenses that you not know. A recent article by the U.S. Bank found out that 82% of businesses shut down each year because of poor management of costs and investment. Clearly, IRS and property taxes aren’t the only thing to be worried about!
As a new business owner, you would know that you have to invest capital in innovation and management. You need an innovative product, and not just good office space to begin with. But since money is always limited in the beginning, your spending power and investment are also limited. How do you manage those spending?
What’s in this article?
- Business spending: Examples of spending when starting a business
- How much does a business spend in the first year?
- How much should a business spend on marketing and advertising?
- Business travel expenses? Here are some good-to-know numbers
- Can you forecast business spending?
- Business spend management: The technology solution
Business spending: Examples of spending when starting a business
Primarily, your money should be divided between marketing, innovation, sales, production, and team management.
Personal expenses should always come last, regardless of your capital. In business expenses, research, market capture, and risk management can be a factor where you are expected to lose money to earn money.
In an ideal world, your equipment would generate interest and no depreciation. But since this isn’t a perfect world, you have to deduct every possible expense and manage your spending wisely. There are several business expense categories to consider where your most budget goes to.
How much does a business spend in the first year?
Managing these business expenses while managing the cost of labor to get a return on investment is a carefully calculated formula. These figures would vary on the type of business, your investment, cost of products, etc.
This ratio also changes as your business expands. 7-10 percent of your income should be spent on advertising.
Sales expenses include salaries of the company employees, bonus pay, overheads, and administrative costs. You can invest upwards of 30 percent of your revenue on sales in a year.
Marketing budget refers to the total cost of capital you’ve spent on advertising, promotions, discounts, schemes, etc.
It’s important you keep track of this expense and the total money you’re spending as it can deduct your total revenue very quickly. While it directly helps promote growth, putting a finite cost to profit ratio helps you stabilize on the economic front.
The exact revenue spent will on several factors such as the size of your company, interest of the product right now, cost of production, and other related factors. The data has to be crunched and related financial deeds sorted.
Companies can also deduct as low a 2% if they have a brand name established already, for example, Google. From a smaller company, try to subscribe to an 8-10% fixed budget.
Regardless of your product or software or services, the sale is always your main goal. Professional businesses focus a significant chunk of their finance on sales, between 25 to 40 percent of total revenue.
If your business is just starting, in the beginning, your business expenses may even be higher in sales. This includes salaries, bonuses, and running costs of your company’s office.
It’s a wise idea to invest more because it keeps your company’s employees happy. Try to predict your expenses by February-march itself for accounting costs for tax reasons.
Sales are trial and error in nature. There is no insurance in investing in business expenses. You cannot focus only on profit and deduct your personal pay and expenses from employees.
The old quote you have to spend money to get money is very true. There is also massive price differentiation in business spending and tax brackets across each industry, especially for a small business. A small business in, let’s say, IT would devote more money to equipment as a business expense whereas one in furniture would in insurance.
Busines costs also vary according to the year. This adds a difference to the way your business functions.
It’s not just a term for tax and accounting. All other expenses such as car, meals, entertainment, and related articles can come other under miscellaneous or running expenses.
You don’t need to search far for overheads such as rent, meals for your employees or upgrading your computers. During a financial year all key expenses, including lease should be in the record as fixed expenses.
Monthly expenses, or professional services, employee morale-boosting activities, and any machinery purchased should be accounted for elsewhere. You could input unpredictable deductions of little or high value here.
Remember: any purchase bought for an employee also counts as sale expenses.
How much should a business spend on marketing and advertising?
There is no straight answer to this nuanced question. You could buy products of high value and increase your expenditures. You could also manage to get some inventory for free, or on rent.
Your deductions would vary on your business model types. Search for industry standards for your product to get an approximate picture. Buying helps long term for the whole year, while renting may provide a short term solution only.
Your personal decisions, income, employee pay etc would affect the data to determine the right percentage.
To help you keep track of business expenses, WellyBox offers an automated unique way to manage. It comes with a free trial so you don’t have to subscribe before trying. The smart AI is intuitive and reads your receipts and tracks the cost and expense of all your spending. This also makes accounting for tax reasons much easier.
Business travel spending? Here are some good-to-know numbers
Companie should, on average, spend no more than 10% of their budget on travel. However, this figure can dramatically change depending on the type of business and its goals. Not only do businesses use travel for business meetings, meeting important clients, sponsoring trips but also recreational vacations for employees.
Managing these significant expenses can significantly reduce costs. Some small businesses encourage carpooling, city public transport passes and other ways to reduce commuting expenses. You may consider a tie-up with some travel companies to get a better deal if you have a predictable travel schedule for your annual business year.
Can you forecast business spending?
For taxes and interest/income tracking, it’s also important to get a run on a budget of your costs. Equipment fails, needs upgrades, your interest on loans may rise, all these factors increase your costs.
You also have to deduct more expense in fixing problems than what you started with. For example, if the IRS wants you to start planning your taxes in March or February you need to already be ready.
Property taxes can increase without warning, and you don’t want to delay sales in your search for solutions. You always need to keep a track of your expenses.
Business spend management: The technology solution
This is where expense management software comes in handy. Finance management apps such as WellyBox help manage your costs better. This helps you make smarter decisions and also helps you while accounting or filing for tax.
Small businesses with less than 50 employees invest significant amount of their budget on health insurance. Surveys show that even small companies cover about 50% of their employee’s families’ insurance premiums.
Most US states that employees cover at least 70% of their staff’s health insurance. You can change the premium depending on the employee’s profile.
Ideally, you should aim for 7-8% of your revenue on advertising. This varies vastly on the goods or services you’re selling. You should also aim for long-term plans rather than a short cash bail out on your investments.
Accounting and bookkeeping costs vary from business size and type. On average, businesses spend about 50 hours a year in bookkeeping alone. If you by the hour, this can cost you significant money. You can reduce or even save these costs entirely by using expense reporting apps.
Spend management for a business is how to manage expenses in order to build your brand, expand and maintain goods and services and more. It includes all expenses such as permanent assets, employee salaries, perks, recurrent bills, loans, and anything else you need to run your business. Managing these expenses is called spend management.
Office supplies don’t just include stationery, but also medium-sized assets like printers, copiers, furniture, equipment and more. Supplies are a monthly expense as most are finite, consumable products that deteriorate. About 50% of office supplies are consumable, and you can save up to 84% if you have a larger office staff.
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