Business Success Relies On More Than Financial Statements

Image_Business_Success_Relies on moeFinancial statements are often used to judge whether a business is performing well or not, however these numbers alone seldom tell the whole story. Entrepreneurs might be knowledgeable in their chosen field, but may lack the technical skills to fully analyse financial statements. It is therefor crucial to investigate other methods available for analysis of their business. Let’s discuss the importance of using the right formulae to keep your business on track.

Seeing The Big Picture
While financial statements are a good picture of past performance, they are not entirely suitable for predicting where the company might be in the future. Because they use historical data, they cannot accurately  reflect sudden market changes or illustrate where a company is going. It’s therefore essential to use other measurement tools alongside financial statements to determine which processes are in need of improvement.

Break-even Analysis
Fistly, a business owner must ascertain the point at which a business is neither making a profit nor a loss. This is the break-even point. The formula is as follows: Profit = (Selling Price x Number of Units Sold) — [Total Fixed Costs per annum + (Variable Costs per unit x Number of Units Sold)]

Simply put, this formula is designed   to  provide   an  understanding of how many sales are required to cover all associated costs. Anything above this level, or break-even point, is profit.

Budgeting and the setting of realistic business targets are two of the planning processes made easier by this analysis. Equipped with this understanding, as well as targets and ideal profit margins, business leaders can make strategic decisions in order to drive sales.

Measuring success
In order for businesses to increase their sales, they first have to understand them. All business is effectively driven by five key areas: lead generation, conversion rate, average sale, average number of transactions,  and profit margins.

Lead generation refers to the total number of potential buyers that have been in contact with the business. Conversion rates are defined as the number of these inquiries that become sales. Combining these two gives the business’s number of customers.

Average Number of Customers = Lead Generation x Conversion Rate
Once you have the number of customers, you can use it in a formula to determine revenues: This  can be done by multiplying it with the average Rand sale (or equivalent currency) and number of transactions.

Revenues = Number of Customers x Average Rand Sale x Average Number of Transactions

The final step of this process is to take the resulting revenue number and multiplying it by a company’s profit margin  percentage to calculate the bottom-line. If one of the numbers in this process is falling short — poor lead generation, low prices and so on — business owners can work with that specific variable to increase over- all profit.

Profit = Revenues x Profit Margins
With these formulae, business owners can enjoy a new perspective on what is happening with their cash flow. Testing and measuring the success of processes is vital to any business and doesn’t have to be as scary as it appears. These tips will have entrepreneurs on the road to profitability in no time.

PIeter du PlessisPieter du Plessis is a Franchisee of the global business coaching company – ActionCOACH.  He is a Chartered Accountant and an accredited Business Coach assisting business owners to significantly grow their profits and develop their entrepreneurial skills. To find out more about Business Coaching or to receive a complimentary coaching session, call 012-0040379, email or visit

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About Rietmark

Rietmark was established in 1997 to assist small and home businesses with the marketing of their business or service. Every month 80 000 advertising booklets are printed and distributed in Pretoria Moot, North, East and Centurion. We also offer design and printing services - business cards, flyers, car magnets, banners, chromadek sign boards, posters, vinyl stickers and more!
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