Net Income vs. Net Profit: What’s the Difference?


For all business owners, achieving financial success is a significant priority. After all, the reason we start businesses is to make money. So, keeping up with the profit is a wise economic strategy that will help you understand how financially successful your business is. All business owners need to be aware of net income and profit. Although they relate directly to revenue quantities, these terms have distinct connotations. Net income is a single number that reflects a certain kind of profit. On the other hand, net profit is the total income after all company expenditures have been subtracted. Net profit is frequently used to assess a company’s financial health and tax obligations, although net income is generally considered the company’s bottom line. But let us explore net income vs. net profit in more detail to understand the difference.

Net income vs. Net profit
Net income vs. Net profit

What is net income?

We must first define the terms to understand the difference between net income vs. net profit. Therefore, net income represents the money left over for equity investors after a company deducts all costs and expenditures. The bottom line of an income statement, a document that summarizes a company’s financial performance during a specific time frame, contains this indicator. The amount of money available to pay dividends to equity owners is what net income primarily reflects. Net income is also known as net earnings in some companies.

How to calculate net income?

The formula for net income is as follows: Net Income = revenue – total costs + additional revenue sources, including shareholders’ dividends. Net income is the sum of all revenue, sales, and other revenue minus all company expenditures. Shareholders can determine a company’s profitability once business experts have calculated this. Additionally, this calculation serves as the foundation for their investment selection.

What type of expenses does a business need to pay?

COGS, or cost of goods sold, are the company’s direct production expenses, such as raw materials, labor, and overhead, and is likely the first and most significant business expense. A business does not have a COGS if it only offers services. Furthermore, you can use the conventional income statement format to disclose your company costs after you have reported your entire business revenue and COGS. Some possible company costs in the income statement format are selling and operating expenses. You pay these commissions for advertising, salespeople, insurance, rent, maintenance, etc. Also, you might have income tax expenses, the business tax liability based on profit. Or the interest expense if your business has problems such as outstanding debt.

What is net profit?

Net profit is the bottom line on the income statement of businesses that do not report to shareholders. As their bottom line doesn’t include any equity frequently owed to shareholders for their investment each quarter, companies with a net income have a somewhat different appearance. Instead, they compare their overall income with costs, such as the amount they pay their staff, the cost of maintaining their facilities, and the cost of sourcing products from suppliers.

As they utilize much of the same data, net income vs. net profit are comparable. However, net income is more difficult to calculate as shareholder dividends are included in an additional calculation. On the other hand, net profit showcases a business’s failure or profitability during a specific time frame. Companies frequently assess their performance by comparing their net profit estimations to those of rivals. It may also show which expenses need reduction or how much of the market a business controls.

How to calculate net profit?

Similar to net income, if business analysts have the necessary data, calculating net profit is simple. Comparing a company’s overall revenue to its direct operating expenses results in net profit. That covers how much it costs to pay staff, how much it costs to buy the supplies to create their products, and how much it costs to rent space for a factory, an office, or a store. To determine net profit, apply the formula: Net profit = total revenue – operating costs – company expenses – taxes – interest. After calculating net profit, business analysts can compare the results to earlier net profits to determine whether or not the company has advanced. Analysts sometimes compare the results with rival market competitors’ net profits.

What is an excellent net profit?

When discussing the best net profit, there isn’t a correct figure. A healthy net profit depends on the company’s operations and the sector it serves. You may use the industry median net profit to compare your net profit. However, economic factors also affect net profit. But, in general, a healthy net profit margin surpasses 10%.

Differences between net income vs. net profit

The following factors make distinguishing between net income and net profit easy. First,

net income is the amount that remains after subtracting preference dividends from net profit. At the same time, net profit is the term used to describe the company’s total profit throughout a specific accounting year. Second, net profit indicates the profitability position of the organization, while net income shows profits per share for equity owners.

Yet, as they all relate to the total of the remaining funds after all company expenses have been subtracted from the entire amount of revenue collected, you may hear accountants use any one of three terms—net profit, net income, or net earnings—to express the same thing.

Closing thoughts

As there isn’t much difference between net income vs. net profit, both terms frequently refer to the same thing. In truth, the only distinction between them is the preferred stock dividend. Moreover, the preference dividend is subtracted from net profit to determine the company’s net income. But now you know the distinctions between the two and when and how to use each.

Author bio: Lisa Smith is a passionate writer and aspiring accountant. She contributes articles to the State to State Move blog, where she educates and entertains her audience. Lisa enjoys spending time with her friends and traveling when she isn’t writing.