Profit Margin vs Markup: What’s the Difference?


It’s a brick and mortar and eCommerce marketing strategy that will give you insight into your business’s financial standing. Markup is important for businesses to use because the calculation allows businesses to give themselves enough capital to cover their expenses, including overhead expenses, and make a profit. Having a markup that is too low may result in business failure instead of eCommerce growth. This includes when running a restaurant business, opening a bakery, opening a food truck, opening a coffee shop, or opening a grocery store. In this case, it will be helpful to look into a restaurant profit and loss statement. Margins and markups actually interact in an entirely predictable manner.

The net profit margin shows whether increases in revenue translate into increased profitability. Net profit includes gross profit (revenue minus cost of goods) while also subtracting operating expenses and all other expenses, such as interest paid on debt and taxes. You can calculate a company’s net profit margin by subtracting the COGS, operating and other expenses, interest, and taxes from its revenue.

What’s the Difference Between Markup and Profit?

Now, here, the trick is, you need to understand how to calculate markup and profit margin quickly. Always bear in mind that Markup is a percentage of cost, and GP margin (or gross profit margin or margin) is a percentage of sales amount. Imagine that you’re a food wholesaler who sells whole turkeys for $20 and that only cost you $10 to acquire. Your gross profit would be $10, but your profit margin percentage would be 50%. That is, you keep 50% of the sales price as the other 50% was used in buying the turkey. Gross profit is the income after production costs have been subtracted from revenue and helps investors determine how much profit a company earns from the production and sale of its products.

  • It can keep itself at this level as long as its operating expenses remain in check.
  • Amanda Bellucco-Chatham is an editor, writer, and fact-checker with years of experience researching personal finance topics.
  • Therefore, for John to achieve the desired markup percentage of 20%, John would need to charge the company $21,000.
  • Again, take .44 (the profit made from the item) and divide it by the sale price of $1.44 and you get a 30% profit margin.

Both margin and markup can be used by business owners to determine profit margin or to set or reexamine pricing strategies. Thus, if a retailer wants its income statement to show a gross profit that is 20% of sales, the retailer must mark up its products’ costs by 25%. Gross profit isolates the performance of the product or service it is selling. By stripping away the “noise” of administrative or operating costs, a company can think strategically about how its products perform or employ greater cost control strategies. To calculate profit margin, start with your gross profit, which is the difference between revenue and COGS. Multiply the total by 100 and voila—you have your margin percentage.

A company’s gross margin indicates that it has generated more money from selling its goods than what it paid for its goods. Both of these indicators have useful applications, but neither serves as the best indicator of small business profitability. This metric is calculated by subtracting all COGS, operating expenses, depreciation, and amortization from a company’s total revenue.

How to Calculate Margin

For calculating GP margin, we divided the profit of $3 with the sales price of $15 and then we reach a gross profit margin of 20%. Margin is also referred to as gross margin, and it’s the difference between the price a product is sold for and the cost of goods sold COGS. Essentially, it’s the amount of money that is earned from the sale. Margins are expressed as a percentage and establish what percentage of the total revenue, or bottom line, can be considered a profit.

Profit Margin vs. Markup: What’s the Difference?

Both of these metrics help a business set prices and measure profitability, but it’s important to know the difference—and know how to calculate the two numbers. Before talking about margin and markup, let’s see the setup of our problem. Let’s say infographics that your company produces a good paying a certain amount (that includes the raw materials, the manufacture, shipping, etc.). In order to stay afloat, you need to sell this good for a higher price than the one you spent in the production process.

This requires first subtracting the COGS from a company’s net sales or its gross revenues minus returns, allowances, and discounts. This figure is then divided by net sales, to calculate the gross profit margin in percentage terms. One of the key aspects of running a successful business is understanding how to utilize markup and gross profit effectively. By utilizing these metrics, businesses can make informed decisions about pricing, profitability, and overall financial health. Whether you express profit margin as a dollar amount or a percentage, it’s an indicator of the company’s financial health.

If we go back to $1.00 product cost, that product would need to sell for $1.44 to make a 30% profit on it. Again, take .44 (the profit made from the item) and divide it by the sale price of $1.44 and you get a 30% profit margin. Net profit is the dollar figure that shows the profit that remains after subtracting the cost of goods sold, operating expenses, taxes, and interest on debt.

Example of Gross Profit Margin

On the other hand, lower markups may attract more customers due to affordability but could impact profitability unless sales volume compensates for smaller margins. Unlike gross revenue, which is simply the sum of all income sources, net revenue subtracts all relevant expenses such as taxes, cost of goods sold, etc. This provides a more realistic perspective on the company’s financial health by illuminating the effectiveness of sales and marketing strategies as well as how lean operations are being run.

For example, if an item costs $50 and you apply a 40% markup, then your selling price would be $70 (cost price + (cost price x markup percentage)). This additional $20 covers not only the original cost but also factors in expenses such as overheads, labor costs, and desired profit margins. The gross profit margin is calculated by taking total revenue minus the COGS and dividing the difference by total revenue.

Gross Profit Margin: Formula and What It Tells You

It helps you understand if your current pricing strategy is generating enough profit for sustainable growth. Monitoring this metric regularly enables you to identify any areas where adjustments may be needed. The most accurate way to calculate both margin and markup is to use accounting software, which makes it easier to track sales revenue and product costs. Of course, profit margin and markup can both be calculated even if you’re using a manual accounting system, though your results may be less accurate. A retail farm market manager knows that their business needs to make a certain gross profit percentage, in this case, let’s say 30%.

Margin is a figure that shows how much of a product’s revenue you get to keep, while markup shows how much over cost you’ve sold it for. Gross profit is different from net profit, also known as net income. Though both are indicators of a company’s financial ability to generate sales and profit, these two measurements serve different purposes. A company’s gross profit will vary depending on whether it uses absorption costing or variable costing. Check your margins and markups often to be sure you’re getting the most out of your strategic pricing. But, there may come a time when you mark up products by a number not included in our chart (after all, we couldn’t include every percentage there!).