A staple of most offices since the mid-1980s, Microsoft Excel changed the way businesses manage their finances forever. With current advancements in technology that have improved financial software, there have been plenty of competitors that have cropped up in recent years, but that hasn’t slowed MS Excel down one bit.

There’s a reason that so many businesses, new and old, still rely on the iconic spreadsheet to take control of their finances. Excel has kept up with the times, updating their features regularly to meet contemporary professional needs, proving that businesses can still make the most out of the iconic software in 2017.

1. Stay on track

One of the central reasons that so many businesses adopted Microsoft Excel early on was due to the fact that it was one of the first tools to offer a comprehensive financial tracking feature that could effectively replace ledgers and paper-based tracking. Today, businesses largely have the same needs they did 30 years ago in regards to organizing their finances, which has been one of the reasons that Excel is still relevant in a rapidly changing digital age. To keep finances in order, the spreadsheet features an automated calculation feature, streamlining organization with good accuracy.

Keeping track of your expenses is essential to managing employee salaries, incoming and outgoing expenses, but it also pays off in the long run:

● Excel can track day to day spending habits, which can help business carve out a smarter budgets that include short-term and long-term goals.

● Based on current cash flow, tracking your spending, whether that’s buying snacks for the office, to investing in advertising campaigns, businesses can budget for future costs based on their current financial statements.

● Tracking expenses can also help businesses identify future financial goals, mapping out whether or not they need funding or additional investment based on their current numbers.

2. Craft a solid pitch

For companies that are planning to pitch investors, having a detailed outline of their expenses is an essential part of any pitch. For companies that are applying for funding for the first time, it might be wise to reach out to an excel expert who can guide you in the right direction. An excel specialist can help you make better use of all that Excel has to offer concerning your personal business goals.

Here are some of the primary ways that Excel can help you successfully acquire funding:

● Outline investor expectations with an excel professional, and focus on information that will both bolster your business plan and instill confidence in you investor.

● Presenting detailed accounts of your company’s financial state will show investors exactly what you are working with and in what way their contribution will allow you to grow.

● Excel’s visualization features will help you construct a clear and engaging presentation that will help illustrate goals and expectations while pitching investors.

Of course, you need to have a solid team behind you and an idea that can stand the test of time, but the backbone of your pitch should be rooted in solid financial projections. Utilizing MS Excel can help businesses tweak their financial modeling based on investor demands.

3. Understand your target market

Excel isn’t just relevant for financial professionals, it has numerous benefits for those on the marketing end of the business spectrum as well. Much in the same way that MS Excel keeps track of your budget, understanding the basics of Excel can greatly contribute to successful marketing campaigns.

The software offers a wide range of templates that can be modified to meet your marketing needs:

● Custom spreadsheets can be used to keep on top of ad campaigns, highlighting the financial successes (or failures) concerning specific operations.

● Excel Pivot tables are ideal for tabulating data that can be subsequently analyzed in order to understand trends in your specific industry.

● After going through the numbers, Excel’s numerous graphs make is easy to present data, whether that’s to your team or in a presentation to investors.

Making the most of Excel’s basic spreadsheet features, allows marketers to easily import, analyze, and deduce industry trends to create better campaigns in the future.

Whether you are preparing to reach out to investors, or simply need to organize your finances, making the most out of Microsoft Excel’s broad range of features is a great way to manage revenue and ensure a more advantageous future.

Paul Sciglar

Paul Sciglar

Paul Sciglar is a certified accountant and columnist interested in international policies and economic affairs.