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What Is Net Profit? Definition, Formula, Examples, & Comparisons


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net profit


No matter what inspired you to set up your business or become an entrepreneur, the bottom line is that you are building a business to create income and profit. But how can you know if your business is successfully doing either of those things? It starts by understanding what profit is and how to determine profit through your financial reporting. Let’s dive into this topic by focusing on net profit, what it means, why it is important, and how you can determine it for your business.


What is Net Profit?

Net profit is the amount of money left over after all the various expenses of your business are subtracted from your total revenue. These expenses can include operating expenses, taxes, interest, and more. It is also referred to as net income, bottom line, or net earnings. It is typically found on the last line of your company’s income statement.


Why is Net Profit Important?

Net profit is important because it helps to determine if a company is financially stable. Investors use it to determine whether they should invest in a company, and creditors can use it to determine whether you can repay a business loan. As a business owner, you can use it to determine where your business stands financially and how it compares to other businesses within your industry.


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What is the Formula for Net Profit?

The formula for net profit can be calculated in several different ways, as described below.


Using gross income

When using gross income, you first need to determine gross income by totaling all your receipts, less expenses. Once you have that, subtract all expenses to come up with your net profit.


Using total revenue

The same principle is applied when using total revenue, as outlined in the following formula:

Net profit = Total revenue – Total expenses


How Do You Calculate Net Profit?

To calculate, you need to determine your total revenue, which is the amount of receipts from sales. If you are not sure about your total revenue, then multiply the number of goods sold by the price of the goods.

Then determine the total expenses, which is how much is being spent before net income. To calculate this, subtract net income from total revenues. Once you have both values, subtract total expenses from total revenue to learn your net profit.


Examples of Net Profit

Here is an example of determining net profit for a company. Company B made a total revenue of $500,000 and accrued total expenses of $300,000. Since it is the total revenue minus total expenses, their net profit would be $200,000.

Another example of this is Company C, which made a gross profit of $700,000 in 2022. Their various expenses amounted to $795,000, which meant that their net profit would have been -$95,000 for the year.


net profit


What’s the Difference Between Gross, Operating, and Net Profit?

All of these are financial metrics used to measure a company’s profitability. The differences can best be described in the following ways:

  • Gross profit is the amount a business earns minus the direct costs of manufacturing or the COGS.
  • Operating profit is the amount of the gross profit minus operational costs.
  • Net profit is the total amount left over after the business has accounted for all deductions, including interest and taxes.


While most businesses include gross and net on their income statement, operating profit is not usually part of this financial statement. Each type of profit provides a different set of information regarding the financial health of your business. Gross profit tells a company whether its production and pricing are efficient enough to meet revenue goals. Operating profit gives deeper insight into your productivity and operational efficiency.


Finally, net profit shows the total income earned by the business owners and shareholders. Clearly, if no money is earned, the business is operating at a loss, and other changes might be necessary to the business model to address this issue.


Although each of these gives you different information, all of them help you to determine the profitability and financial health of your business, which contribute to the strategies you employ to improve or maintain that level of profitability.


When Should I Use and When Should I Avoid Using Net Profit?

It is important to note that net profit varies greatly between industries, so it shouldn’t be used to compare companies. In such cases, it would be more appropriate to consider it as a percentage of sales. It also shouldn’t be used as a measure of how much cash a company earned during a given period, as it accounts for non-cash expenses, like depreciation.

Generally speaking, when a company’s net profit is low or negative, various problems could be to blame. These range from decreasing sales to poor customer experience to substandard expense management.


How Do I Improve My Net Profit? 

Improving it is crucial for the growth and sustainability of your company. These strategies can assist in increasing your net profit consistently.


Track efficiency – Operational efficiency plays a vital role in acquiring, processing, and completing customer orders and transactions. Improving operational efficiency also affects your overall profit margin.


Develop sales strategies – Effective sales strategies for pricing, valuing, and promoting products and services can significantly impact your profit margin.


Increase customer retention and satisfaction – Focusing on customer retention and satisfaction leads to repeat business and positive word-of-mouth referrals. Providing excellent customer service, personalized experiences, and loyalty programs are some of the methods you can utilize to increase customer satisfaction.


Reduce overhead expenses – Regularly review your overhead expenses carefully and use benchmarks to help you identify areas where you can reduce costs.


Optimize supplier relationships – Building strong relationships with suppliers can lead to better pricing and terms, reducing your cost of goods sold.


Evaluate pricing strategies – Analyze your pricing strategies to ensure they align with your profit goals. Increasing prices, if possible, without negatively impacting customer demand, can provide a significant improvement to your bottom line.


Eliminate waste – Increasing efficiency can help you reduce waste by streamlining workflows, optimizing inventory management, or reducing energy consumption.


Motivate your staff – Your customers depend on your staff to deliver, and the more engaged your employees are, the more likely your bottom line is to be positively impacted. Incentive programs and professional development can assist in boosting morale and productivity.


Elevate your brand – Building a strong brand reputation can attract more customers, thus increasing sales while also justifying your premium pricing for products or services.


Each of these options requires you to evaluate your business, from where you buy your inventory and raw materials to how efficient your processes are. But by putting in the work, you can see the results in your net profit.


Frequently Asked Questions


Can Net Profit Be Manipulated?

Yes, it can be manipulated by overstating assets or understating liabilities, reducing long-term expenses to increase short-term profits, aggressive revenue recognition, hiding expenses, manipulating revenues or expenses, and altering a company’s financial records to present a false picture of its financial conditions.


What Role Does Net Profit Play in Financial Statements?

It plays a crucial role in financial statements and is the final profitability indicator of a company, which determines the overall financial performance.


Do Taxes Impact Net Profit

It is the value that remains after all expenses, including interest and taxes, have been deducted from revenue. For businesses, the net income or profit is the ordinary income that is subjected to tax. Once the taxes due are deducted, you obtain the net of tax income. Net profit before tax is the total income less total non-tax expenses.


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In Summary

Determining your net profit involves having accurate financial data, but it can also indicate areas where you might need to make improvements to impact your business positively. With every decision you make, your business will show a profit or loss. By looking at it and the different parts of your business model, you can build a solid foundation that will allow your company to expand and increase market share throughout your industry.


Want help with your bookkeeping? We make it easy. Get startedSpeak w/ a Founder, or Schedule a Callback

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Tracy Knepple

Tracy Knepple

As a writer and editor with 20+ years experience, Tracy Knepple offers practical tips and analysis on accounting, bookkeeping, small business, and many other topics. She has authored over 100 books as a professional writer for the Raymond Aaron Group. She received her Bachelor's degree in Communications from Indiana University.

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