Financial Modeling & Ana


Sales Variance and Profitability Analysis (Price, Mix, Vol)

Calculate in Excel and explain variances in Gross profit and Sales versus Budget and Prior periods with recommendations

4.20 (47 reviews)


3 hours


May 2021

Last Update
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What you will learn

What are sales related variances and how do they impact profit of a business? How do these variances help explain business performance?

How to explain variances resulting from sales price, quantity and product mix differences.

How to completely explain variance vs budget and previous year in terms of dollar amounts and profit percentage (%).

How to automate variance calculation in Microsoft Excel so that files can be updated every time a new calculation is required.

How to summarize variance calculation results in the form of automated graphs/charts.

How to present the results of variance analysis to management using Microsoft Powerpoint.

How to analyse and provide recommendations to management based on results of analysis.

Complete solved Excel files


Do you ever find yourself, in business review meetings, trying to explain the business performance versus budget, or prior period, but not having all the answers? Then, this course is just for you. 

Being able to analyse and present the profitability of a business through variance analysis is a key business partnering skill. It can help you identify key business issues and establish your position as a trusted finance business partner to the senior management. This is a must have skill for all finance and business professionals, specially Sales Analysts, Financial Analysts, Accountants, Controllers, CFOs, General Managers and CEOs.

In this course, we take a detailed look at calculating and analyzing variances in sales and gross profit (budget variance analysis and prior period variance analysis), driven by changes in sales prices, sales quantities and product mix. With the help of these variances we will be able to explain precisely the performance gap, both in terms of dollar amounts and profit margin percentages, vs budget and prior period. We will calculate the variances by developing automated Microsoft Excel files. Once all the variances in price, volume, quantity and mix are calculated, we will convert them into charts for presentation, and then analyze in detail each variance. We will also explain performance versus budget and prior year, and then make precise recommendations to improve profitability and business performance.

Here is what you will learn in this course?

- You will be able to explain precisely the variance in amounts for Sales, Cost of Sales and Profit vs budget and vs previous period.

- You will also learn how to explain the variance in Profit margin percentage (%) vs budget and vs previous period, and what impacts the variance in margin points.

- You will learn how to summarize the variance results and present it to management in the form of easy to follow graphs/charts (visualization).

- You will learn how to analyse the results of the variance calculations, and provide recommendations to management (using Microsoft PowerPoint).

- You will start with current period actual sales, cost of sales and gross profit of a company, compared with budget and prior year results.

- You will learn about the hierarchy of sales variances; Sales Price, Volume, Quantity and Mix.

- You will learn how to create Excel templates to calculate all of these variances that are automated and update as soon as new data replaces existing data (this is great for monthly and weekly, or even daily updates).

- You will learn about when to use Selling price, and when to use Profit as a base for calculation.

- There will be quizzes and assignments to test and reinforce your knowledge.

- You will also get downloadable solved variance analysis Excel files, that we prepare during the course lectures. 

In summary, by the end of this course, you will be able to explain financial performance vs budget and previous year as a result of changes from sales price, quantities and product mix. You will be able to successfully explain results, and empower decision makers to make informed business decisions based on your recommendations. This will save you a lot of time and effort, and is likely to have a significantly positive impact on your confidence and career growth.

You can achieve this mastery of explaining variances in sales and profitability as soon as tomorrow, or your next meeting, if you take this course now.

So, don't wait and start learning by enrolling for the course, right now.

Hope to see you inside the course!


Sales Variance and Profitability Analysis (Price, Mix, Vol)
Sales Variance and Profitability Analysis (Price, Mix, Vol)
Sales Variance and Profitability Analysis (Price, Mix, Vol)
Sales Variance and Profitability Analysis (Price, Mix, Vol)




Sales Variances - What you need to Know?

Types of Sales Variances - The Hierarchy

Bases of Calculating Variance - Profit vs Selling Price?

Variance calculation for different scenarios - Actual vs Bud and vs Prior Year

Impact of changes in costs on sales variances

The Basics

Calculate impact of Sales Variances on Profit of a business using Excel

Calculating Sales Price Variance

Calculating sales volume variance

Calculating sales quantity variance

Calculating sales mix variance

Calculating Sales variances

Calculate impact of Variance on Profit margin (%) using Excel

Change in Profit % - Introduction

Change in Profit % - An example

Calculating Profit % variance due to Price

Calculating Profit % variance due to Mix

Quiz 3

Automated Excel modeling for Sales, Cost and prior period variances

Calculate Sales $ variances

Calculate Cost $ variances

Calculate variance vs prior period

Summarize the results of all variances

Summarising Variances - Introduction

Variance Summary Table

Creating a Waterfall chart to present variances - Total variances

Creating a Waterfall chart for each product

Manual Waterfall Chart - Older versions of Excel

Linking your Chart to Powerpoint for presentation

Analyze, present and make recommendations!

Analysing variances and making recommendations - Part 1

Analysing variances and making recommendations - Part 2

Wrap Up

Congratulations and Thank you!


Madhusmita10 May 2021

I am a sales and business development person and this course gave me a new perspective to analyze the results and understand the hidden drivers. I am sure this course would be very helpful to me.

Kay1 March 2021

The margin portion was a bit confusing, in terms of the formula (probably just me), but overall I liked this course. Very helpful learning PVM.

Leo4 February 2021

Yes, basic refresher. Most companies look at EBIDTA so I would spend a minute or two on that. Just my opinion

M20 November 2020

I have searched other courses as well as other platforms for a straight-to-the-point explanation on variance analysis and I never found anyone to explain it as well as Mr. Umair Bhatti. Thank you, Mr. Bhatti! This course is absolute gem! It's because of courses like this that I keep returning to Udemy over and over again.

Mike8 April 2020

it was good for me to learn and explore the differences verses budgeted and actual results. It was my job to report the budget vs actual expenses to managers but I had not been exposed to the sales side of bud vs actual. Section 7, analyzing variances and making recommendations is also very useful to me to see examples of what type of questions to ask and what differences to drill down on.


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