How to Calculate Sales Price

Instructor: Bethany Calderwood

Bethany has taught special education in grades PK-5 and has a master's degree in special education.

In this lesson, you will learn how to calculate the price for items that are on sale. You will calculate the discount, then subtract it from the item's original price to find the sale price.

Sales Price

Mona wants to buy a new outfit, so she goes to Fabulous Frank's Clothing Store. There is a sign saying 'BIG SALE: 10% OFF SHIRTS.'

Mona wants to know how much each shirt will cost. To do that, Mona has to calculate sales price.

10 percent off sale sign

Here is an equation you can use to calculate sales price:

Original Price - Discount = Sales Price

We will use Mona's shopping trip as an example to help us learn how to calculate sales price.

Calculating the Discount

To find out the sales price, you have to first calculate the discount. The discount is the percent off--it is the amount from the original price that you don't have to pay. If the sale is 10% off, the discount is 10% of the original price. The shirt Mona is looking at has a discount of 10% off.

There is more than one way to calculate the discount. We will learn a way that, once you practice, you could do in your head if you were at the store with no calculator.

Here is some information that will help us figure out how much money to subtract for the discount: percent (%) means 'out of one hundred.' One dollar is equal to 100 cents. This means a 10% discount is equal to 10 cents 'out of one hundred,' or 10 cents taken off for every dollar in the original price.

The original price on Mona's shirt is $5.00. A 10% discount for a 5 dollar shirt is 10 cents for every dollar, or 10 cents multiplied by 5. The equation can be written like this:

$0.10 x 5 = $0.50

The discount is 50 cents.

Calculating the Sales Price

Remember the equation we mentioned earlier? Now it is time to use it.

Original Price - Discount = Sales Price

The original price of the shirt is $5.00. The discount we just calculated is $0.50.


$5.00 - $0.50 = $4.50.

The sales price for Mona's shirt is $4.50.

Another Example

Since the shirt is on sale, Mona decides to buy a pair of pants, too. She finds a rack of pants that says 'CLEARANCE: 50% OFF.' The pants Mona likes have a price tag that says the original price is $20.00. Let's calculate the sales price.

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