Price Per Unit: Is Bigger Better?

random-aisle-photos 013The price per unit helps you determine if the jumbo sized drum of applesauce is a better deal than a regular sized jar. How to determine the price per ounces is easy, most of the time stores do it for you! Take a look at the shelf tag- it should give you a price per unit, usually in ounces (oz.) or pounds (lb.).

If the price per ounce/pound on the larger container is smaller, then it is a good deal. When comparing, make sure both containers are using the same unit of measurement

Here is an example of what the shelf tags can look like:

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The majority of shelf tags will list:

  • The Item
  • The size of the container (in ounces, pounds, or units)
  • The Price of the item
  • The price per unit (in ounces, pounds or units)

This is also a great strategy to see if the store brand or a brand that isn’t your usual brand is a better deal than what you normally buy.

If your store doesn’t have shelf tags that break down the price per unit, here is how you can figure it out- I recommend using a calculator.

Take the price of the item and divide it by the number of ounces/lbs/units in the package.

Let’s use for our example the Uncle Ben’s Buttery Ready Rice, pictured above on the left.

$1.93 divided by 8.8 ounces equals .219, which is 21.9¢ per ounce.

If you keep a Price Book, you might want to  include a space for unit price, you would write 21.9¢ in the Unit Price Column. You can round up, or leave it as a fraction of a cent, to get an exact price for comparison. Learn more about price books here.