Understanding percentages is an essential skill needed for all aspects of life, including budgeting, shopping, and investing. Yet, figuring percentage can be a challenging task for many people, especially those who struggle with math. The good news is that learning how to calculate percentages is not only possible but also easy to understand with the right guidance. In this article, we will provide you with a comprehensive guide to help you master the skill of figuring percentage the right way.

Step-by-Step Guide: How to Calculate Percentages

The first step in figuring percentage is to understand the basic concepts. Here is a step-by-step guide to calculate percentages:

Step 1: Determine the Total Value or Quantity

The total value or quantity is the whole amount from which you will find the percentage. It is represented by the letter “A”. For example, if you want to find 20% of $100, $100 is the total value or quantity.

Step 2: Determine the Value or Quantity That You Wish to Find the Percentage of

The value or quantity you want to find the percentage of is represented by the letter “B”. For example, if you want to find 20% of $100, $20 is the value or quantity that you want to find the percentage of.

Step 3: Divide the Value or Quantity You Wish to Find the Percentage of by the Total Value or Quantity

Divide the value or quantity you wish to find the percentage of by the total value or quantity: B รท A x 100. For example, if you want to find out what percentage of 300 is 75, you would divide 75 by 300 (0.25).

Step 4: Multiply the Result by 100 to Get the Percentage

To get the percentage, multiply the result from Step 3 by 100. For example, if you got 0.25 in Step 3, you would multiply it by 100 to get the percentage, which is 25%.

The Importance of Understanding Percentages in Daily Life

Percentages are used every day in various ways, including budgeting, shopping, and investing. Here are some scenarios where understanding percentages is essential:


Budgeting is all about managing money, and understanding percentages is essential. For example, if you have a monthly income of $5,000 and you spend $1,500 on rent, your rent is 30% of your income. Knowing these percentages can help you manage your budget more effectively.


Understanding percentages is crucial when shopping. When you see an item advertised as “50% off,” it means that the price has been reduced by 50% of its original price. Being able to calculate percentages quickly can help you to determine if the deal is worth it.


Percentage calculation is also essential in investing. For example, if you invest $5,000 in a stock that increases in value by 20%, your investment will now be worth $6,000. Without understanding percentages, you may miss out on opportunities to make smart investment decisions.

Common Mistakes When Calculating Percentages and How to Avoid Them

Although calculating percentages is a straightforward task, here are some common mistakes to avoid:

Confusing Percentage with Percent

Percentage refers to the portion or number in every 100, while percent (%) is the method of expressing that portion or number. Be sure to use percentage and percent appropriately to avoid confusion.

Using the Wrong Formula

Using the wrong formula is a common mistake that can lead to incorrect results. Always ensure that you are using the appropriate formula when calculating percentages.

Forgetting to Apply Formula Consistently

Consistency is crucial when applying a formula. That means ensuring that you are dividing or multiplying numbers correctly and using decimal points properly.

Using Rounded Numbers

Using rounded numbers instead of exact numbers can cause significant errors when calculating percentages. Always use exact numbers to avoid mistakes.

Using Excel to Calculate Percentages: A Beginner’s Guide

Excel is an excellent tool that can help make percentage calculation easy. Here is a step-by-step guide to using Excel to calculate percentages:

Using the “%” Function

The “%” function is one of the most straightforward functions in Excel and can be used to calculate percentages quickly. Here are the steps:

  1. Select the cell where you want the percentage to appear.
  2. Type “=B/A%” (without the quotation marks) into the cell.
  3. Press Enter.
  4. The percentage value will appear in the cell.

Using the “Formula” Tab

Excel also has a “Formula” tab that can be used to calculate percentages quickly. Here are the steps:

  1. Open the “Formula” tab in Excel.
  2. Select the cell where you want the percentage to appear.
  3. Click on the “Insert Function” button.
  4. Type “percentage” in the search bar.
  5. Select the “%” function from the list of results.
  6. Enter the appropriate values for “numerator” and “denominator.”
  7. Press Enter.
  8. The percentage value will appear in the cell.

Percentages Made Fun: Games and Exercises to Help You Master the Skill

Learning percentages can be intimidating, but there are plenty of games and exercises that can make the process fun. Here are some interactive resources to help you master the skill:

Math Games

Math games make learning percentages fun and interactive. Websites such as Math Playground and Cool Math Games offer a range of percentage-related math games for kids and adults alike.

Mobile Apps

There are plenty of mobile apps that can help you practice calculating percentages on the go. Apps like Mathway and Khan Academy provide interactive exercises and practice problems to boost your percentage calculation skills.

Teaching Kids About Percentages: Tips and Tricks for Parents and Teachers

Teaching percentages to kids can be a challenging task. Here are some tips to help make percentage calculation fun and engaging for children:

Real-World Scenarios

Teach percentage calculation by using real-world scenarios like shopping, saving money, or sharing sweets. This will make learning fun and relevant to kids.

Interactive Games

As mentioned earlier, interactive games and exercises can make percentage calculation a fun experience for kids.

Visual Aids

Visual aids like pie charts, bar graphs, and number lines can help make learning percentage calculation more accessible for kids.

Advanced Percentage Calculation: Going Beyond the Basics

Beyond the basic percentage calculation methods, some complex percentage calculations may require more attention. Here are some examples:

Compound Interest

Compound interest is a type of interest that is calculated on both the principal amount and any accrued interest on the original investment. This type of interest calculation can be challenging, but resources like Investopedia can provide detailed explanations and calculations.

Percentage Change

Percentage change calculation is used to measure the increase or decrease of a variable by percentage within a specific period. To calculate the percentage change, you must divide the difference between the new and old value by the old value and then multiply by 100. This calculation is commonly used in finance and economics.


Figuring percentage is an essential skill for everyday life, and it’s a skill that everyone can learn. Calculating percentages can help you make informed decisions in budgeting, shopping, and investing. Given the steps, tips, and resources provided in this article, we hope that you can master the skill of figuring percentage and apply it in your daily life.

By Riddle Reviewer

Hi, I'm Riddle Reviewer. I curate fascinating insights across fields in this blog, hoping to illuminate and inspire. Join me on this journey of discovery as we explore the wonders of the world together.

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