Cost Of Goods Sold (COGS) is a common accounting term or simply called COGS when you meet with your accountant or at a corporate meeting.
If you’ve ever wondered what it is and why it is so important then this article is for you.
Let’s first understand the term cost of goods sold.
COGS is the value of the inventory that has been sold by a business.
It is only recognized upon sale of inventory and is reported in the financial period in which those sales occur.
The value of inventory is the total of the direct cost of the products making up that inventory, which has either been produced or purchased by a company for resale. It includes additional charges directly related to preparing products ready for sale, like packaging and delivery charges. However, it excludes indirect expenses such as sales & marketing.
Therefore, COGS equal the direct cost related to the production of or purchase of products sold.
Keep in mind that the value of inventory on hand is considered an asset until the inventory is sold.
The primary motive of starting any business is to earn a profit. A business can ensure that it earns a profit by knowing the exact income and expenses incurred to sell its products.
COGS inform a business about all the direct expenditures incurred in getting products ready for sale. Therefore, COGS are an important part of the business decision making process.
Here are some of the benefits of calculating COGS:
Firstly, your selling price can be determined by knowing the total direct costs you have incurred in producing or procuring products. Once you know these costs, you will be in a better position to judge the price at which to sell products so that you can cover your indirect expenses and also earn a profit from the sale.
Knowing COGS helps you determine how much of a profit margin you can keep on the products you sell.
Your profit and loss statement needs to list all your income and expenditures. By taking the direct costs you have spent in acquiring stock, you can arrive at the total expenses incurred by including other indirect expenses such as overhead costs like sales and marketing.
Determining profit margin by only considering direct costs incurred is an incomplete picture. Chances are that your prices may be higher than your competitors in the market. In such a situation, fewer customers will purchase your products and you will incur a loss. If your prices are lower than your competitors, then you can still incur a loss since your low profit margin might not cover your indirect expenses.
COGS helps you to sell your product at a competitive price, grow sales and by extension, earn profits.
Now that you know the importance of calculating COGS, let’s learn the formula to calculate COGS.
Here’s the formula to derive COGS:
To calculate the COGS for a reporting period, start with the value of the beginning inventory. If additional inventory was added during the reporting period, be sure to add the value of any new inventory that is produced or purchased to the value of the existing stock. Now, subtract the value of ending inventory from COGS sold for that reporting period.
Note, that this is a basic example and does not take into account items like returns, discounts, obsolete stock, and the inventory valuation method used.
Let’s assume that company X uses the calendar year to record their inventory. The beginning inventory value was recorded on the 1st of January and the ending inventory value was recorded on 31st of December.
The beginning inventory value was $20,000. During the year, the retailer realized that the business would sell more than the inventory received earlier in the year, so additional inventory worth $7,000. was purchased. At the end of the calendar year, the ending inventory value was worth $4,000.
Now, let’s work out the COGS for the entire year by using the formula.
COGS = Beginning Inventory + Purchases made during the period – Ending inventory
COGS = $20,000. + $7,000. – $4,000.
Therefore, COGS = $23,000.
The COGS equals $23,000, as calculated. Use this formula to help with production, purchasing, and pricing decisions.
Calculating COGS can also help you to calculate your profit for a reporting period and help with decisions to ensure that indirect costs are covered.
Suppose your revenue is $75,000 in a reporting period.
Knowing the COGS, your profit will be $75,000. – $23,000. = $52,000.
A cloud-based inventory and order management system that has been designed to integrate bi-directionally with your accounting software is key to keeping a close and accurate view of sales performance. Cin7 offers access to real time inventory levels and associated financials that make it easier for product sellers to feel confident that they are earning a healthy profit margin.
To learn how Cin7 can modernize your operations, book a call with one of our experts.
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