What is Sales Turnover?

Sales Turnover

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Sales Turnover

Sales turnover, often simply referred to as “turnover”, represents the total value of goods or services sold by a business over a specific time period, typically a fiscal year or a quarter. It’s a measure of a company’s efficiency at generating sales and can indicate the pace at which a company is growing its revenues.

In the context of inventory management, the term “inventory turnover” is often used, which represents how many times a company’s inventory has been sold and replaced over a specific period.

It’s important to note that sales turnover refers to the total revenue from sales, not the profit. It doesn’t account for the costs incurred to produce or buy the goods that were sold.

How to Calculate Sales Turnover:

Sales Turnover = Net Sales / 1
Net Sales = Gross Sales – Returns, Allowances, and Discounts.

Benefits of Analyzing Sales Turnover:

  • Company Health: A consistently increasing sales turnover suggests that a company is growing, whereas a declining turnover might indicate problems that need to be addressed.
  • Benchmarking: Comparing the sales turnover with competitors or the industry average can provide insight into a company’s performance relative to the market.
  • Financial Planning: It aids in financial forecasting, budgeting, and planning for future growth.

Example of Sales Turnover

“EcoFriendly Footwear” is a company that specializes in manufacturing and selling sustainable shoes made from recycled materials.

Annual Sales Data:

  • Gross Sales for the year: $10 million
  • Returns and allowances: $500,000
  • Discounts given: $200,000

Calculating Sales Turnover:

  • Determine Net Sales:
    Net Sales = Gross Sales – (Returns + Allowances + Discounts)
    Net Sales = $10,000,000 – ($500,000 + $200,000)
    Net Sales = $10,000,000 – $700,000
    Net Sales = $9,300,000
  • Sales Turnover: In this scenario, sales turnover is simply equal to the net sales (as we’re determining total revenue from sales).
    Sales Turnover = $9,300,000


With a sales turnover of $9.3 million, “EcoFriendly Footwear” generated substantial revenue from its sales. To understand the performance better, the company would:

  • Compare with Previous Years: If the sales turnover last year was $8 million, this indicates a positive growth rate.
  • Benchmark against Competitors: If a direct competitor has a turnover of $15 million with a similar market presence, it might signal that “EcoFriendly Footwear” has room to grow or might need to reassess its strategies.
  • Examine Returns and Discounts: A higher amount in returns might indicate issues with product quality or customer satisfaction. Meanwhile, if discounts are substantial, the company might need to assess its pricing strategy.

This example illustrates how sales turnover is calculated and how it can be used as an essential metric for assessing a company’s revenue-generating capability.

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