Find the percentage of a total
Say that your company sold $125,000 this quarter, and you need to find out what percentage $20,000 is of the total.
- To find out, divide $20,000 by $125,000. Here’s the formula in cell C2: =B2/A2. The result is shown as 0.16 because cell C2 is not formatted as a percentage.
- To format 0.16 as a percentage, (which will also remove the zero) on the Home tab, click the Percentage button.Now we see that $20,000 is 16% of $125,000.
TIP: Formatting is the key to getting answers shown in percentages. Find out more in displaying numbers as percentages.
Find the percentage of change between two numbers
A company sold $485,000 in 2011 and $598,634 in 2012. What’s the percent change between the two years?
- First, click in cell B3 to apply the Percentage format to the cell. On the Home tab, click the Percentage button.
- In cell B3, divide the second year’s sales ($598,634.00) by the first year ($485,000.00), and then subtract 1.
- Here’s the formula in cell C3. =(B2/A2)-1. The percentage of change between the two years is 23%.
Notice the parentheses around (B2/A2). Excel calculates what’s in parentheses first, and then subtracts the 1.