Inventory Turnover Calculator


Optimize your inventory management with Calcopolis!

inventory turnover

The inventory turnover ratio is an accounting metric that can help businesses analyze a variety of aspects and influence their decisions on purchasing, manufacturing, pricing, and more.

This is because it measures the number of times a company manages to turn over its inventory through selling or using within a given period of time.

If you want to measure this metric, our Inventory Turnover Ratio calculator will spare you the hassle and brainpower to do so.

For more information about inventory turnover, how it works, and tips to help you improve it, keep on reading this guide!

What Is Inventory?

First, let's have a quick look at the inventory and how it's identified in business. The inventory involves all the non-monetary assets that can be recorded on the balance sheet, i.e., the company stores them with the intent to sell them and make profits.

This means that it can be anything from raw materials needed for manufacturing all the way to finished products that you sell directly.

So, technically speaking, all of them can be used in our calculator as long as they can be converted into cash flow within a given period.

What is the Inventory Turnover Ratio?

A single inventory turnover means the amount of time needed for a single item to be sold from the day it was recorded in your sheets until it was sold.

The Inventory turnover ratio measures how many times a particular business turns over its inventory to figure out the average amount of time needed to sell its inventory.

Keep in mind that this ratio is relative to the cost of the goods sold within a certain period, which is typically a fiscal year but can vary accordingly.

Also, you should know that the inventory turnover varies from one industry to another, with sectors like service, finance, and transportation having the highest ratios.

How to Calculate Inventory Turnover Ratio?

Now that you know what this ratio is, here's a deeper look at the formula that our tool uses to calculate the inventory turnover:

The Inventory Turnover Ratio Formula

Inventory_Turnover = Cost of Goods Sold (COGS) / Average Value of Inventory


  • Cost of goods sold refers to the direct costs of manufacturing and producing the goods in order to be sold by a business
  • Average inventory is the average amount of inventory that you have within a given period, which is further broken down into (beginning inventory + ending inventory) / 2

After figuring out the numbers in the previous formula, we can use the inventory turnover formula to calculate the inventory days, which is the number of days needed for the company to sell all its inventory, which is expressed in days using the following formula:

Inventory Days = 365 / Inventory_Turnover

Where 365 is the number of days in a fiscal year.


Let's say that you have a store that sells handmade ornaments. Within a fiscal year, the store recorded $40,000 as the cost of goods sold, while the average value of inventory was $11,000.

In that case, the inventory turnover ratio would be $40,000 / $11,000 = 3.64. 

Consequently, if we want to calculate the average number of days it takes to sell the inventory, we divide 365 days over 3.64. This means that it should take around 100 days.

The Importance of This Metric

importance of good inventory turnover

The inventory turnover ratio calculator has a huge significance and influences your decision-making process.

This metric helps you analyze the company's wellness in terms of generating sales from your inventory. 

Not only that, but it also helps you measure other metrics like inventory days, which is also critical for proper warehouse management. It prevents overstock.

Additionally, it can help you gauge your business against industry standards and direct competitors by comparing the numbers.

Benefits of High Inventory Turnover Ratio:

When it comes to optimizing inventory levels, businesses always aim to strike the right balance. Having a high turnover ratio is often a testament to efficient operations and market demand. So, what are the advantages of a high inventory ratio?

  1. Enhanced Profitability: One of the primary benefits of high turnover is that it indicates products are being sold rapidly, which often translates to strong sales and increased revenue. By regularly converting stock into cash, businesses can potentially realize higher profitability.

  2. Reduced Holding Costs: With high turnover, the many days an item sits in the warehouse are diminished. This means a reduction in costs associated with holding and storing inventory. As a result, using Calcopolis's tools to maintain a high turnover ratio can be financially rewarding in the long run.

  3. Optimal Cash Flow: High turnover means inventory is regularly replenished, creating a steady cash flow. Businesses don't have excess money tied up in stock, making funds available for other strategic investments.

  4. Sign of Effective Sales & Marketing: A high turnover ratio reflects a successful marketing strategy and strong demand for products. It indicates that the business has a good grasp of the market's pulse and knows what its customers want.

  5. Minimized Risk of Obsolescence: The fewer days sales of inventory remain on the shelves, the lesser the chance that these items will become outdated or obsolete. A high turnover ensures that products are sold before new models or trends make them undesirable.

Drawbacks of a Low Inventory Turnover Ratio:

On the flip side, a lower inventory turnover could hint at potential challenges in inventory control or market positioning. Why should businesses be cautious about a low turnover?

  1. Increased Holding Costs: Low turnover means inventory levels remain high for many days. This can escalate the costs associated with storing, insuring, and managing the inventory. Tools like Calcopolis can help pinpoint where inefficiencies lie, but businesses need to act on these insights.

  2. Potential Inventory Obsolescence: When products aren’t selling quickly, there's a risk they could become outdated or obsolete. This means companies may have to discount or write off these items, impacting profitability.

  3. Reduced Cash Flow: A lower inventory turnover ties up capital in stock for longer durations. This can restrict a business's liquidity and the ability to invest in growth or address emergent needs. Visit our Defensive Interval Ratio Calculator for more information.

  4. Indication of Poor Sales Strategies: If the days sales of inventory are extended, it might reflect an ineffective sales or marketing approach. Perhaps the products aren't aligning with market demand, or maybe the pricing strategy needs revisiting.

  5. Risk of Excess Inventory: Holding on to excess inventory increases the risk of theft, damage, or spoilage, especially for perishable goods. It also puts pressure on inventory replenishment processes, potentially leading to stockouts of high-demand items.

  6. Inaccurate Forecasting and Purchasing Decisions: Low turnover may be a result of overestimating the demand, leading to high opening inventory levels. Relying on historical data without considering market shifts can inflate the average inventory value, making it imperative for businesses to refine their forecasting techniques.

In the dynamic world of inventory management, understanding the nuances of stock turnover and inventory costs is vital. As demonstrated, both high and low turnover have their implications.

Using tools like Calcopolis can help you strike the right balance, optimize your operations and ultimately achieve sustained growth.

Limitations of inventory turnover ratio

While this metric can provide insights into a company's operations, there are several limitations to keep in mind:

  1. Industry differences:
    Inventory turnover ratios can vary significantly across different industries. For example, a grocery store may have a much higher inventory turnover ratio than a luxury goods retailer. This means that comparing inventory turnover ratios across different industries may not be meaningful.
  2. Limited to specific period:
  3. Inventory turnover ratios only provide information about a company's inventory management during a particular time. They do not provide information about longer-term trends or potential issues with inventory management.
  4. Does not consider inventory value:
    Inventory turnover ratios only consider the number of times inventory is sold and replaced during a period and do not consider the inventory's value. This means that a company with a high inventory turnover ratio may still have a significant amount of inventory on hand if its inventory is relatively low value.
  5. Doesn't reflect the quality of inventory:
    Inventory turnover ratios do not provide information about the quality of stock or the rate at which inventory is becoming outdated. A high inventory turnover ratio may be due to the company selling lower quality or outdated products.
  6. Can be manipulated:
    Companies may use tactics such as discounting or aggressive marketing to increase sales and artificially inflate their inventory turnover ratios. This means it is essential to consider other metrics and qualitative factors when evaluating a company's inventory management.

So, while the inventory turnover ratio can provide insights into a company's inventory management, it is crucial to consider its limitations and supplement it with other financial and non-financial analyses when evaluating its operations.

How to Improve Inventory Turnover Ratio

empty warehouse

Improving a low inventory turnover ratio means a faster cash flow, which is essential for growing your business. Here are some quick tips to help you improve your this metric:

  • Encourage the sales of old stocks through discounts
  • Improve your demand forecasting accuracy to avoid inventory stagnation
  • Classify your inventory in terms of importance and prioritize critical ones
  • Automate your inventory management process
  • Always monitor the inventory turnover ratio to track your progress

Related tools

ROA Calculator lets you analyze from a different angle how well a company utilizes its assets.

To analyze and optimize your inventory, you may find our FIFO and LIFO calculators particularly helpful.


Created by Lucas Krysiak on 2022-10-24 18:01:34 | Last review by Mike Kozminsky on 2023-02-13 17:40:11

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