Industry sector: Retail and wholesale

Record shop: Cash sales

'Cash sales' means all income from your main business activity which is received at the time of sale. While a certain amount of your customers will pay you in actual cash, remember that Cash sales can also include:

  • debit and credit card payments, including contactless
  • cheques, if you decide to accept them
  • electronic payments made through services like PayPal if you sell products online. If you decide to sell through eBay or Amazon, as many independent record dealers do, you're likely to find that a large proportion of your customers will choose to pay by PayPal or Amazon Payments. If you sell through your own website, you may decide to add PayPal or Amazon Payments as a payment option along with online debit and credit card payment

To prepare your cash flow, you need to estimate how much income you will receive over the next 12 months, including VAT.

There are a number of things to consider when you make your estimates:

Type of business

  • will you take over an existing record shop or start from scratch
  • the location of your premises and your opening hours
  • how big will your premises be. This may dictate the range of stock that you will be able to hold
  • who will your customers be - will you target a particular age group or perhaps a specialist interest group, such as vinyl picture disc collectors or fans of a particular genre of music
  • will you sell online - through your own website and/or through an online marketplace like eBay or Amazon

Your products

  • what range of products will you stock - aside from your core range of recorded music, will you sell other things such as music DVDs, T-shirts, concert tickets, posters and so on
  • will you sell roughly the same volume of goods each month or will you have seasonal peaks and troughs caused by, for example, the Christmas period - albums in particular are popular Christmas presents
  • will you sell secondhand music
  • how will you monitor which are unpopular/popular titles
  • will you have 'live' displays or will you display empty cases and keep stock behind the counter
  • how will you combat staff and customer theft


  • what will your pricing policy be (don't forget, you must be able to cover your costs, overheads and drawings)
  • how often will you review your prices
  • will you offer discounts, special offers, seasonal sales and so on

To help with your decisions, click on the checkpoints for guidance. Once you have worked out a Cash sales figure add it to the relevant field in your cash flow forecast.