Every year, many new small business owners wonder if they can take an advertising tax deduction to reduce their tax liability. The answer is, yes, you can absolutely save on taxes by advertising with FleetNow. Here’s a closer look at the rules on advertising as a tax deduction, and the services that FleetNow provides that can qualify as deductible marketing expenses for your business.

Is Advertising Deductible? It Depends

Some forms of advertising are definitely tax deductible. These are necessary business expenses used to promote your business, so the IRS lets you deduct them in most cases. There are a few exceptions, which we’ll talk about below.

In general, all of these are considered valid advertising expenses that you can deduct from your business taxes:

  • Online, print, television and radio advertisements for your business
  • Direct mail marketing
  • Expenses on promotional items like cups, pens, hats or shirts
  • Sponsoring a local sports team
  • Email newsletters, SEO (Search Engine Optimization) services, and PPC (Pay-Per-Click) advertising
  • Business cards, brochures, and expenses related to your business website
  • Promotional events for clients or a publicity campaign

When Does Advertising Not Count as Tax Deductible?

There are generally two types of expenses that would make “advertising” not count as tax deductible. These are certain personal expenses, and anything that is political in nature. The personal expenses are fairly straightforward. If an expense benefits you personally, and is outside the normal course of work for your business, then it’s probably not deductible.

Political advertising of any kind is never tax free. For example, you may be considering running ads on a political candidate’s website. That’s not deductible. Some people like to endorse their preferred candidates using signage, their website, or some other form of paid media. Since that is a political expense, and directly benefits a political campaign, it is not tax deductible (even if you are doing it to promote your business).

FleetNow Services for an Advertising Tax Deduction

A number of services that FleetNow provides are considered deductible advertising expenses. You can use these to lower your tax burden to the IRS when filing business taxes. We help to provide a solid “paper trail” for you to use to deduct marketing expenses through FleetNow. Here are some examples of some of the services we provide which can be deducted.

Equipment Sales. Listing your used construction equipment for sale on FleetNow is a deductible advertising expense. We are the premier online service for selling new and used boom lifts, forklifts, skid steers, telehandlers, towable boom lifts, scissor lifts, trailers and trucks. The rate that you pay to list your used equipment with us is considered a deductible advertising expense.

Paid Online Advertising. FleetNow places ads for our clients on Google, Facebook and Bing for our clients. This allows you to reach a broader audience by listing your used equipment with us, and therefore qualifies as a deductible marketing cost.

Search Engine Optimization. We can optimize your listings of used equipment for Search Engine Optimization (SEO), ensuring that more clients are likely to see your machine and respond to it.

Website Redesign. Your website is likely to be your most important front-facing advertising expense. Redesigning and upgrading your webpage with FleetNow is a deductible expense.

Promotional Materials. FleetNow can help create promotional materials for your business, such as shirts, hats, business cards and more. These are deductible!

Tax Deductible Advertising FAQs

How do you write off advertising?

Advertising and marketing expenses are listed on your business tax return as deductible business expenses. There are specific locations and tax forms used for this. The best way to ensure that you are filing your business taxes correctly, along with the proper advertising deductions, is to talk with your professional tax preparer. There are different methods and forms used, depending on whether your business is a sole proprietorship, single-member LLC, a partnership, a multi-member LLC, or a corporation. Your tax preparer will know which IRS forms and schedules to use.

What advertising expenses are not deductible?

Advertising that is used for personal, non-business related or political reasons is not tax-deductible. This includes things like:

  • Political ads
  • Charitable donations
  • Ads for personal hobbies
  • Using a company logo on a personal vehicle

Is advertising tax free? In many cases, yes, it is. If you run a business buying or selling construction equipment, Contact Us at FleetNow to discuss your marketing and advertising needs.