DEFINITION of 'Backorder'

An order for a good or service that cannot be filled at the current time due to a lack of available supply. The higher the number of items backordered, the higher the demand for the item.


Backorders are an important factor in inventory management analysis. If a company consistently sees items in backorder then this could be taken as a signal that it is running too lean - and that it is losing out on business by not providing the products demanded by its customers.

  1. Average Age Of Inventory

    The average number of days it takes for a firm to sell to consumers ...
  2. Inventory Accounting

    The body of accounting that deals with valuing and accounting ...
  3. Unsold Inventory Index

    A monthly statistic released nationally that details the number ...
  4. Inventory

    The raw materials, work-in-process goods and completely finished ...
  5. Inventory Turnover

    Inventory Turnover is a ratio showing how many times a company's ...
  6. Carrying Cost Of Inventory

    This is the cost a business incurs over a certain period of time, ...
Related Articles
  1. Insurance

    Working Capital Works

    A company's efficiency, financial strength and cash-flow health show in its management of working capital.
  2. Fundamental Analysis

    Measuring Company Efficiency

    Three useful indicators for measuring a retail company's efficiency are its inventory turnaround times, its receivables and its collection period.
  3. Fundamental Analysis

    Inventory Valuation For Investors: FIFO And LIFO

    We go over these methods of calculating this component of the balance sheet, and how the choice affects the bottom line.
  4. Fundamental Analysis

    Analyzing Retail Stocks

    To analyze retail stocks, investors need to be aware of the most common metrics used. Find out what they are.
  5. Professionals

    Career Advice: Accountant Vs. Financial Planner

    Identify the key differences between a career in accounting and financial planning, and learn how your personality dictates which is the better choice for you.
  6. Economics

    Explaining Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price

    The manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) is just what it describes – the price manufacturers recommend that retailers charge for their goods.
  7. Economics

    Calculating Days Working Capital

    A company’s days working capital ratio shows how many days it takes to convert working capital into revenue.
  8. Economics

    Calculating Cross Elasticity of Demand

    Cross elasticity of demand measures the quantity demanded of one good in response to a change in price of another.
  9. Personal Finance

    What to Collect: Apple Watch vs. Luxury Watches

    The "iWatch" is a new player in the luxury watch world. But will it stand the test of time? Some points for collectors to ponder.
  10. Stock Analysis

    The Biggest Risks of Investing in Amazon Stock

    Find out which risks are most important to Amazon's shareholders. Learn which operational risks impact share prices and which financial risks affect investors.
  1. Does working capital include salaries?

    A company accrues unpaid salaries on its balance sheet as part of accounts payable, which is a current liability account, ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. What is a profit and loss (P&L) statement and why do companies publish them?

    A profit and loss (P&L) statement, or balance sheet, is essentially a snapshot of a company's financial activity for ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. How do dividends affect the balance sheet?

    Dividends paid in cash affect a company's balance sheet by decreasing the company's cash account on the asset side and decreasing ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. Are dividends considered an expense?

    Cash or stock dividends distributed to shareholders are not considered an expense on a company's income statement. Stock ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. Do dividends go on the balance sheet?

    The only account recorded on the balance sheet, when dividends are declared and before they are paid out to a company's shareholders, ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. What are some examples of general and administrative expenses?

    In accounting, general and administrative expenses represent the necessary costs to maintain a company's daily operations ... Read Full Answer >>

You May Also Like

Hot Definitions
  1. Zero-Sum Game

    A situation in which one person’s gain is equivalent to another’s loss, so that the net change in wealth or benefit is zero. ...
  2. Capitalization Rate

    The rate of return on a real estate investment property based on the income that the property is expected to generate.
  3. Gross Profit

    A company's total revenue (equivalent to total sales) minus the cost of goods sold. Gross profit is the profit a company ...
  4. Revenue

    The amount of money that a company actually receives during a specific period, including discounts and deductions for returned ...
  5. Normal Profit

    An economic condition occurring when the difference between a firm’s total revenue and total cost is equal to zero.
  6. Operating Cost

    Expenses associated with the maintenance and administration of a business on a day-to-day basis.
Trading Center
You are using adblocking software

Want access to all of Investopedia? Add us to your “whitelist”
so you'll never miss a feature!