3 Often Overlooked Costs when Budgeting for your New Small Business

business cost

Creating a budget and financial plan for your business is a daunting and difficult task, but it is a necessary step to regulate spending and ensure that you maintain long-term success. Your budget should be based on your profit estimates, cost and expense estimates, and current investments into your business thus far. If you are just opening your business, profit estimates can be especially hard to predict, so it is best to use a smaller, easily attainable target at first. As your business progresses, you can use past data on sales and costs to adjust this target more accurately.     

To make your first budget or financial outline easier, here are some commonly overlooked items you should include in your cost or expense calculation!

Branded Materials

At this point, hopefully you have already purchased your business location (or online website if you are a digital-only company) and any equipment required, such as laptops or technology for employees, desks and chairs, printers, and so on. After purchasing these essentials, it is then important to account for the costs of branded materials. Examples of branded materials include signage for your storefront, business cards, window decorations, clothing/uniforms, or any other items you plan to put your logo and/or business name on for marketing purposes. Designing the perfect sign for your business can be difficult, so researching some business sign ideas can be a great first step. Many branded materials like signs and window decorations are a one-time purchase (unless you rebrand your business later on), making them good investments for the future. 

Research Costs

An often overlooked step is researching your target market, industry, and audience both before and after opening your business. Assessing your competition and learning what types of customers to target with your marketing, products, or services is crucial for making your business successful in the long term. Although research can set you ahead over time, it does require both upfront and ongoing costs. You can outsource your market research to a specialized company, or you can do your own research with an effective yet cheap marketing tool. Either way, including research costs in your budget upfront is a great way to increase your future success. 

Required Software Subscriptions

Another frequently forgotten cost is required software subscriptions or purchases. For example, if your business needs Photoshop software for designing mock-ups or creating graphics, including the price of an Adobe Creative Cloud subscription is necessary for your budget. If your business needs marketing or sales software, buying access to HubSpot or a similar product is also necessary. Additionally, including the price of maintaining and hosting your business website is important to include as well. 

Conclusion 

Overall, there are many things that must be included in your budget when you first start your business. Budgeting early can set you up for long-term success, so making an accurate financial plan is very important. Hopefully, this list has helped to simplify the process and give you some ideas for other often-forgotten costs to include for your unique business!

Surprise Increase in US Retail Spending Leads to Weaker Dollar

us dollar

Despite being the world’s most robust economy, 2020 was a trying time for the US. With more than 787,000 more Americans filing for unemployment, it came as a big surprise for investors that the forecasted growth of consumer spending of 1.1% was eclipsed by the actual spend growth of 5.3%. 

Arthur Idiatulin, a Forex Trader and Financial Practitioner for Tickmill notes that “the retail sales reading tends to underestimate growth, since in early January, American households received stimulus checks from the government, the stimulating effect of which was difficult to calculate.”

This additional pandemic relief money from the government suggests a pick-up in economic activity after being restrained by another surge in Covid-19 infections last year. The largest gain in retail sales in seven months reported by the Commerce Department on Wednesday was across the board, and ended three straight monthly decreases. The acceleration in activity at the start of 2021 was evident in other data showing strong growth in production and prices at factories last month.

While strong growth in the retail sales is a clear signal that the world’s largest economy is growing well, it does mean that the theme of yield hunting remains valid, which has negative implications for the USD.

The US economy’s performance is at the heart of the decision to buy or sell dollars. A strong economy will attract investment from all over the world due to the perceived safety and the ability to achieve an acceptable rate of return on investment. Since investors always seek out the highest yield that is predictable or “safe,” an increase in investment, particularly from abroad, creates a strong capital account and a resulting high demand for dollars. However, the stimulus checks and resultant growth in the retail sector is somewhat of a false economy. 

Currently, stock index futures in the US are trading in moderately negative area, so all in all the demand or USD today gradually weakens. EURUSD is likely to consolidate in the 1.20-1.21 channel with a probable test of the 1.21 level. Lack of progress on vaccination pace in Europe is the main obstacle to appreciation of the European currency, but as soon as the situation in this direction starts to improve, the European currency should be able to resume strengthening against the USD.

While most economists see the year off to a slow start, they expect the pace to pick up later in the year as vaccination efforts spread and the grip of Covid-19 fades.

One of the main concerns for the recovery has become inflation, however, senior Federal Reserve officials have shrugged off concerns that further fiscal stimulus might generate an unhealthy jump in inflations this year.