How to Calculate Markup and Margin for Retail?

It gets tricky when you attempt to determine the appropriate cost of a product and calculate the profit that can be made after finishing the trade.

How do you calculate markup and margin?

In business, markup represents the percentage of the profit that is your cost. For example, if the product cost is $40 and the selling price is $60, the markup percentage is ($60-$40)/$40= = = 0.5 = 50%.
The margin represents the portion of the product’s selling price, that is, your profit on that product. For example, if the product cost is $40 and the selling price is $60, then the margin percentage is ($60-$40)/$60 = 0.333 = 33.3%.

Product markup = (selling price – cost of product) / cost of the product
Product margin = (selling price – cost of product) / selling price.

To calculate retail product markup, determine the difference between the selling price and the cost of the product and then divide it by the product’s cost.
To calculate the retail product margin, determine the difference between the selling price and the cost of the product and then divide it by the selling price.

In this specific article, we will reveal the hidden suspense. We will also steer clear of talking like an accountant, which is easy to grasp in simple English, just how it needs to be handled, clearly and without any sophistication. 

What is retail markup?

Store markup or retail markup refers to the percentage of the profit that is your cost. It can be determined by dividing the difference between the selling price and the cost of the product by the product’s cost.

 If there is something that sells for one buck and sells for two bucks, then the amount we gain is 1 dollar as profit because the cost and the profit are one dollar, which makes up a hundred percent markup.

What is the retail margin?

The retail margin represents the percentage of your sales price that is profit. It can be determined as the difference between the price you pay for an item and the price you sell the item to customers. To calculate the retail margin, find the difference between the selling price and the product cost and divide it by the selling price.

On the one hand, it is quite the same as markup, but sometimes it is not the same. 

Here is the thing: I am trying to make you understand it in simple language. The margin could refer to the percentage of the sale price, the profit whose margin is the percentage. Therefore, it’s similar but in reverse. 

Similarly, if you buy anything worth one dollar and sell it for two dollars, we know that it will value one hundred percent markup. Voila! But hold on, for margin, as we have already done the marking up to the price of one dollar and hence also sold it for two dollars, which led us to a profit (one USD here represents ½ of the margin, so to say). 

Almost every retailer will be happy to acquire a fifty percent margin if they want to thrive, which most people won’t, so that is why simple maths is used via the help of simple numbers.

You will not find margins this high or of that sort in a retail environment or grocery store. 

Margin vs. markup?

As explained in the previous section, markup is simply the percentage of our cost that will be the profit. 

If we compare, in a way, they do match each other and are relied upon a similar set of no. However,  they are also different but significant. 

Here’s a brief chat that will assist you in explaining the  basic things that are not similar and showcasing a few examples:

Product cost ($)Selling price ($)Margin (%)Markup (%)

How do you calculate retail price from cost and margin?
To calculate a retail or selling price, you must divide the cost by one minus the profit margin percentage. If a product costs $100 and you want to keep the 40 percent profit margin or decimal 0.4, then $100/(1-0.4) =$100/0.6  =$166.67.


What people often say. You might wonder what they meant. Heydey is trying to say that if a person gets a route to drive for a raise in what the sales are, tons of worries go away. It adds up to a point where one has to be the authority driving these sales for an excellent foundation that finances or is the system’s base to set, track, and monitor costs, margin, and shrinkage.

Or else, you will find that your problems will grow enormously. 


Distinguish between Net profit and Gross profit margin.

In simple terms, when we sell something, we gain a particular amount, and when we subtract the actual cost from it, the gained margin is referred to as Gross profit.

On the other hand, as a retailer, greed must not cross our minds; instead, we must find a way to sell our products similarly to how we would if we were in any competition and focus on bringing value. 

That is precisely why we have to balance all the needs and keep the fair prices of the product in parallel.

Daniel Smith

Daniel Smith

Daniel Smith is an experienced economist and financial analyst from Utah. He has been in finance for nearly two decades, having worked as a senior analyst for Wells Fargo Bank for 19 years. After leaving Wells Fargo Bank in 2014, Daniel began a career as a finance consultant, advising companies and individuals on economic policy, labor relations, and financial management. At, Daniel writes about personal finance topics, value estimation, budgeting strategies, retirement planning, and portfolio diversification. Read more on Daniel Smith's biography page. Contact Daniel:

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