How to Set Up a Spread Sheet for Profit & Loss in a Small Business

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A profit and loss statement lets a business gauge how well it is performing.
A profit and loss statement lets a business gauge how well it is performing. (Image: profit image by Michael Shake from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>)

A business profit and loss statement is a gauge of a business's progress. Use the profit and loss statement as a tool to measure sales and expenses during a set time frame. This can be a monthly or yearly calculation.

Using this statement lets the business determine the net profit after all expenses are removed. Setting up a profit and loss statement can be done using an Excel template.

Open Microsoft Excel and locate the template gallery.

To find the template gallery in Excel 2003, select "File" and "New." Using the right task pane, locate the templates search box. Type "profit loss statement." You will see all of the available templates. Download the profit loss statement.

To find the template gallery in Excel 2007, select the "Office" button and select "New." Using your search box, type "profit loss statement." You will see a list of matching templates. Download the profit loss statement.

Customize the Excel template to your business needs. Since this statement is a comparison of your business performance during different time periods, decide how often you want to generate this report.

Open the template and enter the company name, time frame and date of the report.

Adjust the sale revenue and cost of sales section by adding products or services that your company sells. This may require you to add or delete rows.

To add products and services, type over the generic products and services included in the template. If you need additional rows for more products and services, right click on an existing product row number and select “Insert.” To delete a products and services row, right click on the existing product row and select “Delete.”

Adjust your operating expenses section. Add or remove any expenses that do not apply to your business. Clarify the taxes section to reflect the taxes you are responsible for.

To adjust add additional expenses, type over the generic expenses. If you need additional expense rows, right click on the row number and select “Insert.” To remove an expense row, right click on the row number and select “Delete.”

Save your changes in Excel 2003 by selecting “File” and “Save As.” Type in a name for your template and change your Save As Type to “Template.”

Save your changes in Excel 2007 by selecting the “Office” button. Select “Save As” and then select “Other Formats.” Type in a name for your template and change the Save As Type to “Template."

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