# What is the Break-Even Point? Definition, Formula, and Examples

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A break-even analysis can help you see where you need to make adjustments with your pricing or expenses. If your business’s revenue is below the break-even point, you have a loss. Sign up for Shopify’s free trial to access all of the tools and services you need to start, run, and grow your business. To make sure you don’t miss any costs, think through your entire operations from start to finish. If you think through your ecommerce packaging experience, you might remember that you need to order branded tissue paper, and that one order lasts you 200 shipments.

Dividing the fixed costs by the contribution margin will provide how many units are needed to break even. Once you’ve calculated the numbers above, it’s easy to figure out your break-even point. The formula for determining your breakeven point requires no more than simple arithmetic. Simply divide your estimated annual fixed costs by your gross profit percentage to determine the amount of sales revenue you’ll need to bring in just to break even. A breakeven point is used in multiple areas of business and finance. In accounting terms, it refers to the production level at which total production revenue equals total production costs.

If you have fixed costs that do not incur monthly you should still include them, but calculate the monthly amount that goes towards that expense. For example, if something is paid for on a quarterly basis, but does not change with production you would divide that cost by four in order to estimate the monthly amount of that cost. In the break-even analysis, we will help you break down the potential fixed costs related to your business. The break-even point is the moment when a company’s product sales are equal to its overall costs. In other words, it’s where total expenses and total revenue balance out. Homeowners, investors, and stockbrokers all understand the line where financial investment meets financial return.

## Master the Break Even Analysis: The Ultimate 2023 Guide

If that’s the case, take heart in the fact that you found out before you invested your (or someone else’s) money in the idea. Use your break-even point to determine how much you need to sell to cover costs or make a profit. And, monitor your break-even point to help set budgets, control costs, and decide a pricing strategy. This applies equally to adding new online sales channels, like shoppable posts on Instagram. Will you be planning any additional costs to promote the channel, like Instagram ads? Fixed costs are any costs that stay the same, regardless of how much product you sell.

In terms of its cost structure, the company has fixed costs (i.e., constant regardless of production volume) that amounts to $50k per year. Recall, fixed costs are independent of the sales volume for the given period, and include costs such as the monthly rent, the base employee salaries, and insurance. Any time you add a new sales channel, your costs will change—even if your prices don’t. For example, if you’ve been selling online and you’re thinking about doing a pop-up shop, you’ll want to make sure you at least break even. Otherwise, the financial strain could put the rest of your business at risk. Break-even analysis is a small-business accounting process for determining at what point a company, or a new product or service, will be profitable.

## The Importance of Cash Flow Management for Small Businesses

Breakeven analysis is a tool used to determine when a business will be able to cover all its expenses and begin to make a profit. Yes, you would want to use the average cost per unit along with the average selling price to get the contribution margin per unit in the formula. The formula for calculating the break-even point (BEP) involves taking the total fixed costs and dividing the amount by the contribution margin per unit. Fixed costs are expenses that remain the same, regardless of how many sales you make. These are the expenses you pay to run your business, such as rent and insurance.

In investing, the breakeven point is the point at which the original cost equals the market price. Meanwhile, the breakeven point in options trading occurs when the market price of an underlying asset reaches the level at which a buyer will not incur a loss. By dividing the fixed costs by the total profit on each unit sold, you can determine how many units you need to sell before your company can sustainably pay off its expenses. This is helpful because it shows the minimum amount of units your company would need to sell before breaking even.

## What can you do to improve your company’s break-even point?

This means that you’re bringing in the same amount of money you need to cover all of your expenses and run your business. Lowering your variable costs is often the most difficult option, especially if you’re just going into business. But the more you scale, the easier it will be to reduce variable costs. It’s worth trying to lower your costs by negotiating with your suppliers, changing suppliers, or changing your process.

- There are a few ways to calculate your BEP, but if you have a strong CRM like Zendesk Sell, it can calculate the values for you.
- Instead, if you lower your price and sell more, your variable costs might decrease because you have more buying power or are able to work more efficiently.
- Instead of dividing the fixed costs by the profit gained from each sale, it uses the percentage of how much value you’re getting from each unit.
- More than that, if the analysis looks good, you will be more comfortable taking on the burden of financing.

If you’re using the break-even analysis spreadsheet, it will do the math for you automatically. If you’re a business owner, or thinking about becoming one, you should know how to do a break-even analysis. It’s a crucial activity for making important business decisions and financial planning.

## Business Breakeven Points

On the other hand, if this were applied to a put option, the breakeven point would be calculated as the $100 strike price minus the $10 premium paid, amounting to $90. Assume an investor pays a $4 premium for a Meta (formerly Facebook) put option with a $180 strike price. That allows the put buyer to sell 100 shares of Meta stock (META) at $180 per share until the option’s expiration date. The put position’s breakeven price is $180 minus the $4 premium, or $176. If the stock is trading above that price, then the benefit of the option has not exceeded its cost. Assume that an investor pays a $5 premium for an Apple stock (AAPL) call option with a $170 strike price.

We believe that clear processes, supported by the right technology, create an environment where people work happier, and consequently make your company more productive. Or, if using Excel, the break-even point can be calculated using the “Goal Seek” function. Get up and running with free payroll setup, and enjoy free expert support. You would need to make $12,000 in sales to hit your break-even point. In the meantime, start building your store with a free 3-day trial of Shopify.

Or, if your BEP in sales is at $50,000, you’ll know that your team must sell at least that much product plus an ambitious percentage to hit growth targets. Let’s say that we have a company that sells products priced at $20.00 per unit, so revenue will be equal to the number of units sold multiplied by the $20.00 price tag. Make a list of all your costs that fluctuate depending on how much you sell. In most cases, you can list total expenses as monthly amounts, unless you’re considering an event with a shorter timeframe, such as a three-day festival.

The first step is to list all the costs of doing business—everything including the cost of your product, rent, and bank fees. Before we calculate the break-even point, let’s discuss how the break-even analysis formula works. Understanding the framework of the following formula will help determine profitability and future earnings potential. It’s usually a requirement if you want to take on investors or borrow money to fund your business. More than that, if the analysis looks good, you will be more comfortable taking on the burden of financing. This analysis will help you easily prepare an estimate and visual to include in your business plan.

This means that the investor has the right to buy 100 shares of Apple at $170 per share at any time before the options expire. The breakeven point for the call option is the $170 strike price plus the $5 call premium, or $175. If the stock is trading below this, then the benefit of the option has not exceeded its cost. The result of this equation is a concrete number you can present at team meetings and use when customizing sales team dashboards. However, this is only useful when each unit sells for a set price. As mentioned previously, some sales teams will approach certain prospects with pricing flexibility as a sales tactic.

If you’re thinking about starting a new business, a break-even analysis is a must. Not only will it help you decide if your business idea is viable, it will force you to do research and be realistic about costs, and make you think through your pricing strategy. The next step is to divide your costs into fixed costs and variable costs. To fully understand break-even analysis for your business, you should be aware of your fixed and variable costs. The information required to calculate a business’s BEP can be found in its financial statements. The first pieces of information required are the fixed costs and the gross margin percentage.