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Price per unit

As mentioned earlier in this lesson, comparing the cost of a product through unit pricing is a way of finding the best buy.

To find the unit price of a product, divide the selling price by the number of units. A unit can be an ounce, pound, quart, or liter, or the number of items in a package.

For example, if a 12-ounce bottle of shampoo costs $2.95 and a 15-ounce bottle costs $3.50, which is the better buy?

You can use division to help you decide:

  • If you divide 2.95 by 12, you find that the shampoo is 0.246 cents per ounce.
  • If you divide 3.50 by 15, you find that the shampoo is 0.233 cents per ounce.

The 15-ounce bottle of shampoo is the better buy at 0.233 cents per ounce. Buying the larger package is best if you use the product frequently and if it keeps for a while. However, be aware of expiration dates. Don't buy a large package if you can't eat or use it before it expires.

Some stores feature the price per unit on the shelf label.