Last Updated on July 27, 2022 by Dave Schoenbeck
When it comes to what affects gross margin in business, most people initially think about how to reduce expenses to improve profitability. Reducing unnecessary expenses can undoubtedly help, but other options are on the table. Therefore, it’s essential to fully understand the components of your gross margin before you make a plan to increase your profits.
What Affects Gross Margin?
Three main factors play into a business’s gross margin calculation: the cost of creating a product or service, the price you’re selling it for, and the number of sales you make.
Changes can occur in any one of those categories, ultimately impacting your bottom line. No matter what you decide to tweak, what affects gross margin the most are variations on those three factors.
How to Increase Profit Margins
To see your gross profit margin increase, you need to consider more than what you’re currently charging. So, considering what affects gross margin, here are a few different changes to implement.
- Stop discounting your prices without understanding the full financial impact. Unfortunately, many business owners are quick to offer sales or promotions regularly without checking how they affect the bottom line. Sometimes, less frequent promotions can better affect your gross profit margin.
- Reduce remakes and other instances of unpaid scope creep. Make sure your customers or clients know exactly what to expect and plan for revisions or replacements. Don’t provide extra work for free.
- Don’t miss out on additional services. Upselling your current clients and customers is easier and more effective than finding new prospects. Look into everything you can offer, then consider bundling products or services for a slightly discounted price.
- Automate what you can. Whether it’s marketing or production, automation frees up time and human resources so your team can focus on higher-level work. Often an investment in automation up front can help improve your profit margin down the line.
- Negotiate for better prices on components, ingredients, or parts. Many suppliers will offer discounts for loyal customers if you negotiate. If they don’t budge, look for new suppliers that offer the same quality for a lower price.
- Order in larger quantities to reduce the cost per part. Sometimes you can even buy directly from manufacturers rather than going through wholesalers.
- Tighten up your product range, especially your slow-moving products. Consider producing less of what doesn’t sell as well, if not eliminating products. Slashing your low-performing products or services can free up time and resources to focus on what sells well.
- Raise your prices. This might be the most obvious answer, but it can be risky. Price hikes can scare off loyal customers. If you go this route, research what you can reasonably be charging and be sure to explain the changes to your existing clientele.
Are you still wondering what affects gross margin in your business? A chat with a retail business coach can help. Click here for a complimentary video coaching call, and let’s discuss what factors affect a company’s gross profit rate.
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