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LOOK Spreadsheet or Database program?

Discussion in 'Sales, Marketing, Pricing Etc.' started by Rednapew, Dec 3, 2013.

  1. Rednapew

    Rednapew Member

    Sep 13, 2013
    Hello there,
    what do I use to build a pricing program/tool...
    do i use a spreadsheet or a database program...
    to have a place to enter all the items involved in a sign, decal, or garment job... time and material types to get a quote quickly....
    I want to enter all my vendor materials broken down to what i charge per linear or square foot and what my time charges are, and other charges such as mileage and have a total at the end...
    what should i use to build this... if you haven't guessed, I intend on teaching myself how to make the program or template for the program
  2. Fred Weiss

    Fred Weiss Merchant Member

    Sep 11, 2003
    Olympia, WA
    It depends on the level of complexity and control you want. When I did one I used a relational database app named FileMaker which is published by Apple for either Windows or Mac platforms.
  3. round man

    round man Active Member

    Oct 16, 2005
    I personally would check out some commercial pricing software before I went to all the trouble to create a program of my own,....in the long run your time may be more effectivly spent learning an off the shelf program catering to the sign industry than to try and reinvent the wheel,...Estimate and signvox both come to mind and I'm sure there are other alternatives ready made or adaptable for the average sign shop,...
  4. Rednapew

    Rednapew Member

    Sep 13, 2013
    I would lke to to enter the length and width of a roll of material... then the cost of the material... from that get a cost per square foot or linear foot of material... then from there apply the markup percentage/ratio... then from there add my design & shop charge which is per hour... starting as a simple one off sign charge at first... then an option to apply a quantity or size discount on the job as needed... nothing too complex to start... I would add material types as I go or use new types....
    ie entry area for vinyl types; entry area for substates; entry area for banner types; then time entry areas; at the end of getting a one off sign price i can enter the variable for size and quantity

    I do have a shop minimum charge of 1 hour
    one person sign operation yup
  5. CreatedDesigns

    CreatedDesigns Member

    May 26, 2013
    Lone Rock, WI
    I have made my own pricing guide using MS Excel. To use MS Access you would be talking a huge database where 95% of the time Excel would work just fine. I figure all costs down to the square inch though. Remember in Excel you can create drop down lists to do exactly what your wanting to do.

  6. Rednapew

    Rednapew Member

    Sep 13, 2013
    Thank you for the suggestion... I am thinking of trying SignVox... $139 a month isn't all that much... and I found a calculator of sorts from an online sign shop... which would be great for quick quotes... however i am not a programmer (just a fast learner) and I would like something in-house that I can change parameters like design time and the actual cost of materials to me... for book making reasons... plus i am a bit OCD over details... probably too much so in this regard... but thank you... I will not re-invent the wheel as you recommend... heh ... so probably SignVox... I will search "Estimate"

    Thanks again, Round Man

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