# Differential Cost Accounting for Managers

Differential cost is the same as incremental cost and marginal cost. The difference in revenues resulting from two decisions is called differential revenue. In the case of ABC Company, moving to television ads and social media marketing exposes the company to a broader customer base. If the company earned \$10,000 using the current marketing platforms, moving to the more advanced advertising platforms might result in a 40% revenue increase to \$14,000. People, even those who are not accountants, sometimes implement a differential cost analysis without realizing it. For example, when shopping online, Daniel saw two of the same pair of jeans on two different websites.

• When the company wants to expand its production capacity, the management may lower the selling price to increase sales.
• Businesses use a differential cost analysis, which is the process of determining a differential cost, for a number of reasons.
• Differential cost is the same as incremental cost and marginal cost.
• For example, if the cost of alternative A is \$10,000 per year and the cost of alternative B is \$8,000 per year.

However, the accountant doing the differential cost analysis showed the possible benefits of additional online sales, which would make the change beyond worth it. The work of managers includes comparison of costs and revenues of different alternatives. Differential cost (also known as incremental cost) is the difference in cost of two alternatives.

## Managerial Accounting

The primary purpose of conducting a differential analysis is decision-making. So, we consider only relevant costs affecting the decision variables. We now have to look at the differential cost between the two choices. For the company to know if the new selling price is viable, it calculates the differential cost by deducting the cost of the current capacity from the cost of the proposed new capacity. The differential cost is then divided by the increased units of production to determine the minimum selling price. Any price above this minimum selling price represents incremental profit for the company.

• However, it generally begins by deducting the cost of the present capacity from the cost of the proposed new capacity.
• If a decision is made on the basis of above computations, alternative 2 would be selected because it promises to generate more net operating income.
• After weighing the positives and negatives of each decision, Terrence and Andrea felt satisfied with their decisions and headed down to the beach.
• For the company to know if the new selling price is viable, it calculates the differential cost by deducting the cost of the current capacity from the cost of the proposed new capacity.
• The marketing director estimates that it will spend approximately \$1,000 on television ads every month.

Suppose the decision is whether to drive your car to work every day for a year versus taking the bus for a year. If you bought a second car for commuting, certain costs such as insurance and an auto license that are fixed costs of owning a car would be differential costs for this particular decision. Future costs that do not differ between alternatives are irrelevant and may be ignored since they affect both alternatives similarly. When we work to make decisions, we need to look at the pros and cons of each option. The key to making these decisions is called differential analysis-focusing on the pros and cons (costs and benefits) that differ between the two options.

## How to Figure the Selling Price for a Retail Store

In the next section, we will look at examples of differential analysis. Among several alternatives, management opts for the most profitable one. Sunk costs should not be taken into account while making any decision because no action can revers them. If a decision is made on the basis of above computations, alternative 2 would be selected because it promises to generate more net operating income.

When the cost differences of business decisions are analyzed in accounting, this is called differential cost. Businesses use a differential cost analysis, which is the process of determining a differential cost, for a number of reasons. The most notable of which is a financial benefit through additional sales. There are further benefits of increased product sales for a business. The economies of scale, which refers to the cost savings gained by an uptick in production, is one. Differential cost may be a fixed cost, variable cost, or a combination of both.

## Differential, opportunity and sunk costs

Company executives must choose between options, but the decision should be made after considering the opportunity cost of not obtaining the benefits offered by the option not chosen. Differential and opportunity cost are two approaches used when comparing the monetary figures involved in various business scenarios. Understanding they types of costs managerial accounting can identify will help you make better business decisions and increase your chances of success. Differential cost is important in both personal and business purchases. In personal purchases, understanding the differential cost can save someone money. In business purchases, it can help in making safe business decisions because it is used to determine the varied profits and costs.

Accountants analyze differential costs for a number of reasons, but especially because it can lead to significant financial benefits for a company. Most of these benefits come from additional sales, which leads to further advantages, such as economies of scale. Economies of scale refers to the total cost savings a company gains due to an uptick in production. Under those circumstances, management should select the alternative with the least cost.

## Sunk cost:

For example, if alternative A’s revenue is \$15,000 and alternative B’s revenue is \$10,000. Prepare differential cost analysis to ascertain acceptance or rejection of the order. But, there is a need for special tools costing ₹ 600/- to meet additional orders’ production. A Statement of Differential Cost and Revenue is prepared to perform differential costing. The costs that do not change in the alternatives are not part of the analysis.

Company executives use differential cost analysis to choose between options to make viable decisions to impact the company positively. The differential cost method is a managerial accounting process done on spreadsheets and requires no accounting entries. In many situations, total variable costs differ between alternatives while total fixed costs do not. For example, suppose you are deciding between taking the bus to work or driving your car on a particular day.