Like-For-Like Sales


DEFINITION of 'Like-For-Like Sales'

A comparison of this year's sales to last year's sales in a particular company, taking into consideration only those activities that were in effect during both time periods. Like-for-like sales is a method of valuation that attempts to exclude any effects of expansion, acquisition or any other event that artificially enlarge a company's sales. Companies may disclose like-for-like sales for various time periods, such as quarterly and yearly.

BREAKING DOWN 'Like-For-Like Sales'

Like-for-like sales help companies and investors determine the sales performance over a certain period of time when compared to the same period of time one year earlier, such as comparing the second quarter of 2012 to the second quarter of 2011. Like-for-like sales are typically represented as a percentage of growth or a dip in sales. For example, company ABC may report a 3.1% rise in like-for-like sales for the first quarter (this year over last year).

Critics of like-for-like sales figures cite the lack of an industry standard for determining the measurement, which means that it is challenging for investors to compare like-for-like sales between two or more retailers. In addition, critics maintain that like-for-like sales are not indicative of the strength of the wider retail economy.

  1. Acquisition

    A corporate action in which a company buys most, if not all, ...
  2. Door Crasher

    A low-priced item of limited quantity typically offered on special, ...
  3. Doorbuster

    A marketing and sales strategy retailers use to get a high volume ...
  4. Units Per Transaction - UPT

    A sales metric often used in the retail sales sector to measure ...
  5. Gross Sales

    A measure of overall sales that isn't adjusted for customer discounts ...
  6. Valuation

    The process of determining the current worth of an asset or company. ...
Related Articles
  1. Fundamental Analysis

    Great Expectations: Forecasting Sales Growth

    Predicting sales growth can be something of a black art, unless you ask the right questions.
  2. Markets

    How To Use Price-To-Sales Ratios To Value Stocks

    Take a look at how this effective ratio can be influenced by certain critical factors.
  3. Forex Education

    Understanding The Income Statement

    Learn how to use revenue and expenses, among other factors, to break down and analyze a company.
  4. Options & Futures

    Advanced Financial Statement Analysis

    Learn what it means to do your homework on a company's performance and reporting practices before investing.
  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

    Calculating Days Working Capital

    A company’s days working capital ratio shows how many days it takes to convert working capital into revenue.
  7. 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.
  8. Professionals

    Career Advice: Accountant Vs. Controller

    Learn about the differences between controllers and accountants, how the two are related and which is the best career choice for aspiring bookkeepers.
  9. Stock Analysis

    How Does Work and Make Money?

    Learn how is taking on retail giants Amazon, Walmart and Costco by promising to save customers an average of 10 to 15% on over 10 million items.
  10. Professionals

    What is Cash Basis Accounting?

    Cash basis accounting recognizes revenues and expenses at the time cash is paid or received.
  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. Capitalization Rate

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

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

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

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

    Expenses associated with the maintenance and administration of a business on a day-to-day basis.
  6. Cost Of Funds

    The interest rate paid by financial institutions for the funds that they deploy in their business. The cost of funds is one ...
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!