How to Build Your Small Business Budget in 5 Steps


You can access your profit and loss statement, track trends, monitor invoices, and more from your QuickBooks account. As it can be complicated for first-time entrepreneurs to create a budget from scratch, it is nice to know there are a number of preexisting budget templates you can use. Even if you choose to create your own, it may be helpful to refer to templates or sample budgets to keep yourself on the right track. A viable budget for a small business is one of the solutions. When you’re running your business, there are a lot of unexpected events, financing needs, and growth prospects. If you do not have a plan for taking action, there is a chance it will lead to irreversible cash flow problems.

  • Even businesses that are doing well enough to get by without a budget will run into problems.
  • Review your expenses (either via your bank statements or through your FreshBooks reports) and see which costs have stayed the same from month to month.
  • When it comes to April’s annual taxes, the self-employment tax I owe has already been submitted and I’m usually pretty close to the right amount.
  • Every section is sub-categorized according to the types of expenses and revenues.
  • They can also advise you on what to do if the actual numbers deviate from the predicted ones.
  • You can make this step much more manageable with reliable invoice software and a way to accept credit card payments.

If you run a startup, however, you’ll want to do extensive research into typical costs for businesses in your industry, so that you have working estimates for revenue and expenses. A business budget estimates future revenue and expenses in detail, so that you can see whether you’re on track to meet financial expectations for the month, quarter or year. Think of your budget as a point of comparison — you run your actual numbers against it to determine if you’re over or under budget.

Streamline Small Business Budgeting Real-Time Work Management in Smartsheet

A well-considered budget should help a small business to encounter fewer unforeseen expenses and more opportunities. Your budget should take into account all of your sources of revenue and all of your expenses, as well as an additional percentage for any emergencies or surprises. Your budget should be based on historical financial data and not exceed what you expect to make in the budgeted period. Be realistic with your numbers and projections so that you do not find yourself in a position you cannot recover from.

If your business is new, you’ll want to use projected costs, such as your monthly rent going forward, your expected utility bills, and so on. Now that you know why a budget is important, follow the steps below to produce a budget that will help you stay on top of your finances and keep your business solid and stable. To help you get started, we’ve gathered expert tips, from finding a mentor to setting realistic goals. By organizing your data into these documents, each month becomes easier to track than the last. The more you stay organized, the simpler it will be to maintain your budget. Above all, once you have a clear sense of your profitability for the month, you can use it to make the right financial decisions for your small business moving forward.

Subtract your variable expenses

I usually send a second invoice and reset the date at that point. This way I never miss an invoice and I stay on top of what’s outstanding. You can call this account “To Be Paid” or anything that makes sense to you. Now that your categories are set, look at the money that you have and start assigning dollars to jobs.

How To Create A Small Business Budget

This post is to be used for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal, business, or tax advice. Each person should consult his or her own attorney, business How To Create A Small Business Budget advisor, or tax advisor with respect to matters referenced in this post. Bench assumes no liability for actions taken in reliance upon the information contained herein.

My Small Business Budget

She loves to cook and spend time outdoors around Austin, Texas. Let’s discuss what a small business budget is and its importance. I’m calling out taxes as a separate step because I think they’re that important! For me, I just take a percentage of each sale and set it aside for taxes.

  • Reviewing your bank statements and bookkeeping reports will make this process easier, but it can be time-consuming to calculate averages for each item.
  • It also helps you decide what to do with business profit, when and where to cut spending and grow revenue, and how to invest for growth when the time comes.
  • If you’re just getting started with budgeting for your business, these templates are a great medium for learning the process.
  • Add all those income sources together to determine how much money comes into your business monthly.
  • The role of the budget as a managerial decision-making tool is unquestionable.

To create your safety net, add 10% of each expense in your startup budget, and add 15% of your monthly operating costs. More businesses are shifting to accounting software for making budgets, tracking expenses, recording revenues, and doing financial analysis. The percentage of businesses relying on budget software has grown to 43% in the US alone.