What Your Top Line Can Tell You

What Your Top Line Can Tell You

In Corporate America we have learned that the bottom line is what matters. The first instinct of many business owners when they receive their financial statements is to look at their bottom line, their profit. But what information can your top line, your sales figures, give you?

Paul J. Lim states in Why Sales Matter More Than Profits, “Forget that profits can always be touched up to make things appear brighter than they really are. Earnings are looking good today not because the economy is sizzling, but because companies cut costs so aggressively in the downturn.” So is your bottom line really meaningful or is there a profit because you cut costs?

My motto has always been, “your numbers tell a story. ” You can use sales figures to assess which segments of the economy are healed – and which have a way to go, says Lim.

But the question is how do you get your sales to give you this information? How can this information help your business?

QuickBooks is a highly customizable accounting program and knowing how to customize your QuickBooks to your industry, your services, and your target market help you get the most of your sales figures.

QuickBooks can become your accounting and CRM solution in one – it’s just knowing how to use the most of it. By having an organized accounting setup, maintaining accurate and detailed customer information, and taking advantage of fields like Customer Type or creating custom fields, QuickBooks can provide you with all the information you need to boost your business. Once these areas are being utilized, there are multiple reports that can be customized, ran, and memorized with what you need to know.

Custom fields can be used to track industry, number of employees, annual revenue, and other specific information about your customers. As this information is entered and managed, custom customer sales reports can tell you what industries are doing well, which industries are hurting the most, what customers need special attention, who are your VIP customers, what needs customers may have and other pertinent information. Ultimately, this information will provide you marketing opportunities that lead to an increase in your own sales figures and have a valuable rise in profit.

The next time you receive your financial statements and are tempted to look at your bottom line, make sure to look at your top line for an accurate view of your business standing and the business world around you.