mar‧gin S3 W3 [countable]
the empty space at the side of a page:
Someone had scribbled a note in the margin.
Use double spacing and wide margins to leave room for comments.
the difference in the number of votes, points etc that exists between the winners and the losers of a competition or election
by a wide/narrow/significant etc margin
They're a world-class team and it was no surprise that they won by such a wide margin.
by a margin of 10 points/100 votes etc
The bill was approved by a margin of 55 votes.
the difference between what it costs a business to buy or produce something and what they sell it for:
Margins are low and many companies are struggling.
Within 10 years they had a gross profit margin of 50%.
4 [usually singular]
an additional amount of something such as time, money, or space that you include in order to make sure that you are successful in achieving something:
It'll take about 30 minutes to dry but I'd allow a safety margin of, say, another 10 minutes.
the degree to which a calculation might or can be wrong:
The survey has a margin of error of 2.1%.
how many mistakes you can make and still be able to achieve something:
At this late stage in the competition there is no margin for error.
7 technical or literary
the edge of something, especially an area of land or water:
the western margin of southern Africa