How to Calculate the Unit Cost of a Product

You are producing 5,000 shirts, so to determine the unit product cost, you will need to divide the total cost ($5,350) by the total number of units produced (5,000). The first section of a company’s income statement focuses on direct costs. In this section, analysts may view revenue, unit costs, and gross profit. Gross profit shows the amount of money a company has made after subtracting unit costs from its revenue.

  • As the Complete Controller mentions, this can also include insurance, depreciation and even stolen assets.
  • From your materials’ cost and production expenses to overhead and labor, keeping tabs on every detail of the investment involved in manufacturing is essential to determine future spending, hiring and pricing.
  • This can give you a notion of where you might price your product created by using product management tools.
  • The cost to have your machines up and running on any given day is $50.

The unit cost, also known as the breakeven point, is the minimum price at which a company must sell the product to avoid losses. As an example, a product with a breakeven unit cost of $10 per unit must sell for above that price. With a solid financial plan in place, you can identify which components are driving up your product costs and adjust accordingly. You may need to buy state-of-the-art equipment for your developers and other team members.

How to Make a List of Fixed Expenses for a Business

Examples of step costs are adding a new production facility or production equipment, adding a forklift, or adding a second or third shift. When a step cost is incurred, the total fixed cost will now incorporate the new step cost, which will increase the cost per unit. Depending on the size of the step cost increase, a manager may want to leave capacity where it is and instead outsource additional production, thereby avoiding the additional fixed cost. This is a prudent choice when the need for increased capacity is not clear. Enter the direct materials cost, direct labor costs, and the factory overhead, and total units produced to calculate the unit product cost.

  • Below are the prices of all the costs, and we need to calculate the product cost for the carpenter.
  • Bulk purchasing and higher production quantities often lead to lower costs due to the spreading of fixed expenses.
  • If our objective is to analyze margins and value inventories, it is normal to use a valuation method such as average cost or fifo.

It is best to have a relatively low cost per unit, as long as the quality and sustainability standards are maintained. This way, you can price your goods competitively, and still secure decent sales margins. To make 100 pounds of peanut butter granola, you’ll need 80 pounds of locally grown oats at the cost of $500. You’ll be using 20 pounds of honey for each batch of granola at the cost of $200. The peanut butter itself is a bit pricier per pound, and you’ll use 10 pounds at the cost of $10 per pound, or $100 total.

UK Manufacturing – Rolls Royce Takes Steps to Improve Operational Efficiency (Competitiveness)

Unit costs are a key indicator of the efficiency and productivity of a business. They are also critical to the profitability and competitiveness of many businesses. ShipBob also helps your online business with tracking distribution metrics and inventory management KPIs so you can easily make cost-conscious supply chain decisions. Partnering with ShipBob is one of the best ways for ecommerce businesses to reduce costs by taking advantage self-employment of an international fulfillment presence and storing inventory closer to your customers. Dealing with these common inventory challenges can hike up logistics costs, from higher storage costs to returns management (e.g., shipping labels, processing and restocking). In this article, we will define cost per unit, explain why it is important, show how to calculate it, and offer actionable tips to reduce your cost per unit.

Calculator: Cost Per Unit

A business commonly manufactures similar products in batches that may include hundreds or thousands of units per batch. Costs are accumulated for each of these batches and summarized into a cost pool, which is then divided by the number of units produced to arrive at the unit product cost. The usual contents of this cost pool are the total direct material and direct labor costs of a batch, as well as a factory overhead allocation.

If our objective is to analyze margins and value inventories, it is normal to use a valuation method such as average cost or fifo. If we buy several products, we will have to distribute these costs with a defined criteria and calculate the unit cost of each product. Having a clear understanding of the cost per unit helps businesses make data-driven decisions and set competitive prices while ensuring profitability.


Economies of scale happen when the cost per unit decreases as production volume increases. When producing or procuring in larger quantities, fixed costs like machinery and equipment are spread over more units, leading to lower average costs. The phenomenon is especially evident in B2B scenarios, where bulk orders can lead to cost advantages. A thorough grasp of the costs incurred in producing each unit empowers you to set competitive prices and ensure healthy gross profit.

In this case, you may want to consider strategies to reduce product costs. While product costs are directly tied to the creation and development of a software product or technology solution. Period costs are the expenses that a company incurs during a specific accounting period but aren’t directly related to the product’s development.

While the preceding description may make it appear that the calculation of the unit product cost is simple, there are a number of variations on the concept that make it more difficult to calculate. If so, follow our strategies to achieve manageable, lower labor costs and maintain your business health in good shape. For example, if your company’s roles require people with more knowledge and technical skills, you’ll probably have higher labor costs. The most direct and significant factor is the actual compensation paid to employees. Different roles, skill levels, and geographic locations can result in varying wage rates, which results in different labor costs.

Backing up your assumptions with data can bolster your confidence that you are building a product that actually meets the needs of your customers. Alternatively, customer research can show that you are on the wrong path and need to pivot. Time is money in this scenario, so you’ll want to consider how long you expect the development process to take and keep track of the actual timeline of events. A bit harder to calculate, time is a crucial factor to consider nevertheless. The software development lifecycle is time-consuming, and you may face obstacles that could lengthen your timeline.

Unit Product Cost Definition

For example, if an electronics manufacturer purchases microchips for its products, the direct cost of a unit would include the cost of each microchip. We add these in the operating activities section of the cash flow statement. We do not enter the product costs directly in the cash flow statement. However, the cost of producing the product affects the working capital.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Shopping Cart
Scroll to Top