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Price Posting and Discussion at Signs 101

Discussion in 'Polls' started by Fred Weiss, Nov 27, 2008.

What should be the forum policy as to price discussion and price posting?

  1. It's fine the way it is

    66 vote(s)
  2. It should be less restrictive

    25 vote(s)
  3. It should be more restrictive

    66 vote(s)
  4. It should totally forbid any price discussion or posting

    4 vote(s)
  5. It doesn't matter to me

    33 vote(s)
  1. iSign

    iSign Major Contributor

    Nov 29, 2003
    Kahului, Maui
    hmm... a new business model for "cats", that entices their monetary contributions through a parallel to a nursery rhyme (or bedtime story or whatever it is) that ends in their death?

    ...now that sounds Republican! :biggrin:
  2. Rick

    Rick Certified Enneadecagon Designer

    Apr 17, 2003
    Valle Vista
    I said something before we went to the CM thing. I feel a little safer on the premium section but not that much. I think I have only posted one design job in 3 years because it happened to me. It has happened on the larger jobs I have posted including calling my former employer for work or attempting to bid on work that was already done or muscling in for more. I actually have no problem if they asked about bidding on work if they were qualified and I had a job for them to bid on. But nothing gets me riled up more than when a sign shop attempts to take over my design work by doing it for free just to sell signs. I don't care about posting pics of the little jobs but I don;t do a lot of those, I have a lot to lose on the really big ones.
  3. skyhigh

    skyhigh Major Contributor

    Jun 16, 2005
    I thank you all for the constructive exchange. Doug and Vid have enlightened me (or at least helped me see another angle to things).

    Fred, its all good. You've sacrificed alot for the well being of this site, and that I commend you for. I wish nothing but positive things for Signs101.

    Have a great day.
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2008
  4. Biker Scout

    Biker Scout Very Active Member

    Jan 24, 2008
    Las Vegas
    I must admit, that I really only read this forum when there's something wrong with my printer. However, when I'm bored, I do like looking for what other's charge for stuff. However, I take their pricing in concert with their location. But I still like to see how I measure up. I have set pricing and it's just a few pennies below average of that sign magazine's price guide. (Green Section)

    But I'm flexible with my pricing dependent on who walks in that door, and my work load for that particular moment. But only I know what my shop's financial needs are. No one else is going to help me keep my lights on.

    Do I take offense at the guy offering banners for .99¢ per sq ft, when the price guide suggests that I should be charging $8? No, not really... first, I look at where he's at... NYC vs. Springfield. Is he close enough to me to potentially pull customers away? Do I have the actual production capacity to print 1000 sq. ft. a day to justify 99¢? Got to be real with yourself and your market and your capabilities. Sure, I'd love it if a company came to me and said they wanted to use me exclusively to print all their banners for the entire year. But at what cost? To me, To them? Could I keep up demand? Am I one printhead disaster away from missing their deadline? Can I keep enough ink on hand, especially if they are only willing to pay 99¢ per sq. ft.? Do my other customers fall by the way side?

    Let's say my regular price is $8 or $9 per sq. ft. and the customer see's his vision of a wall mural dissappear into 4 digits of $$$$ "not going to happen". But, here's how I can keep the guy... show him the "Regular Price" and tell him that because he's ordering such a large piece, I'll give him a 50% discount! $4 sq. ft. is nothing to sneeze at, when you are talking a substantially large job. But you've now established an illusion of value, and gained customer trust, by pulling him aside, looking over your shoulder and offering the guy a deal. Make it clear, that this is a one time offer, and that he can't think about it. (Meaning don't price shop me down the street) Do this by getting him to commit to a 50% deposit, and tell him that you are going to be swampped with an upcoming wrap job of fleet vehicles. And if you can't squeeze him in now, you probably won't be able to for at least 2 weeks. (2 Weeks is always way to long for anybody to wait for a banner. They always want it yesterday)

    As for this forum being available to the general public... frankly that's the part I don't like. Doesn't mean that this has to turn into a paid subscription forum. Just take a step in registering users and establishing them as actual "Sign Professionals". Yeah, that's extra work on part of the admins, but the reality of the situation is that just by asking for a business license number in a manner that "Sounds like you can check up on them" is enough to deter would be lookie-loos and price shoppers. It's not like they really have to give you legit numbers, or documentation. People registering for the forum don't know that. If they are legit, they'll probably oblige, thinking they've got a safe place to discuss industry topics outside of earshot of Random Joe.

    Just asking for a reseller's permit number and local business license number is more than adequet in handling the difference between a "Premium" site and one that can be browsed by anyone who is not willing to put forth the time and effort into establishing themselves as a legitimate business owner. Therefore negating their ability to discuss price anyway. If you are working out of your garage and taking cash only, that's fine... but don't try to compete with my market by asking me my pricing strategies, when you are not willing to take the financial leap yourself as a "Brick & Motar" business. Also, be fair to your local market. Even go as far as becoming professional friend with your competitors in your town.
  5. SignsOfMaine

    SignsOfMaine Member

    Nov 10, 2008
    Dang this discussion is still raging on.

    I have no problem with people posting their pricing. What they charge has nothing to do with what we charge, though it might give some clue as to what we ought to charge.

    Everyone's pricing differs based on so many things from area to size of the shop to scale of the operation... the more you know about the playing field, the better.
  6. Pat Whatley

    Pat Whatley Major Contributor

    Sep 29, 2003
    Wetumpka, AL
    doing my duty...
  7. GB2

    GB2 Very Active Member

    Nov 15, 2005
    Connecticut, USA
    I didn't read this whole thread, so I'm not sure if this is appropriate or not, but I'd just like to state that the problem here is the combination of two different forums into one, the paid and the free. I think in a perfect world this should be only a paid site and everyone would pay and participate but since the reality is that the site would probably fail if it went that way then I think there just needs to be a gradual move toward that direction by offering greater incentive to being a paid member. It should be more than just premium forums, I haven't given this enough thought to offer too many constructive suggestions but maybe more features of some type, greater discounts from merchant members, etc. Consequently there should be a gradual trend to offer less to the free members. Above all, there should be a much greater marketing effort to publicize the contributing membership, I'm sure more than half the free members aren't even aware of the paid forums.
  8. Fred Weiss

    Fred Weiss Merchant Member

    Sep 11, 2003
    Olympia, WA
    Thanks for your suggestions.

    Watch for some announcements of some changes that will begin to address your observations in January.

    :popcorn: :signs101: :popcorn:
  9. Andy D

    Andy D Very Active Member

    Oct 20, 2014
    Hattiesburg, MS
    I'm here not only here to learn but to try and help less experienced members, who may know how to make signs, but don't know other aspects
    of the sign business, such as pricing. I agree, whole sale prices might need to be listed privately, but other than that, I'm fine as is.

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