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Printing prices

Discussion in 'Portfolio Board' started by David Obryan, Sep 16, 2020.

  1. ColorCrest

    ColorCrest Active Member

    745
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    Dec 11, 2017
    So Cal
    An all-too-common story, sorry to say. The shenanigans.
     
  2. Pixels Are Bad Mmmkay?

    Pixels Are Bad Mmmkay? Very Active Member

    We price our prints in six increments. 1-11, 12-31, 32-59, 60-99, 100-199, and 200+ sq. ft.

    Prices for calendered start at $11.25 per sq. ft. and go as low as $5.75 per sq. ft.

    Prices for cast start at $13.50 per sq. ft. and go as low as $7.00 per sq. ft.

    You can kind of fill in the blanks. Prices can vary slightly depending on certain aspects of the job, but this is a good baseline, at least in our local market. For example, if we did four individual 4' x 8' prints for the same client, we would price it based on the 128 sq. ft. price but would charge a little extra for trimming each print. And of course we also charge more for contour cutting.
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2020
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  3. ColorCrest

    ColorCrest Active Member

    745
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    Dec 11, 2017
    So Cal
    Would you use the same policy if the square footage were the same total of 128 but from 32 different files? (32@4sqft each)
     
  4. Jester1167

    Jester1167 Premium Subscriber

    The only ones who need immediate pricing are usually tire kickers. If they won't spend the time to give you all the necessary information for a proper quote, they get the ballpark pricing and they are informed on what will affect the pricing.

    Quotes like the one mentioned usually have a set of specifications you have to follow and are handled through email. You have all the info and plenty of time for an exact quote, If not a few follow on questions. In these quotes, you can use words that will help raise questions about other company's quotes, and offer options for cost savings.

    "high-performance cast vinyl with a protective high-performance cast laminate $xxx.xx"

    "premium calendared vinyl with a protective laminate $xx.xx

    By using certain buzz words you can call into question what materials your competitors are using and help make sure they are comparing apples to apples.

    I have a friend who says "all quotes start at a million dollars. every piece of information you give me will get us closer to the actual cost."

    Another quote for Design time is "design is like a cab ride. if you know where you are going we'll go straight there. If you don't, the meter is running until we get to the destination."
     
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  5. Pixels Are Bad Mmmkay?

    Pixels Are Bad Mmmkay? Very Active Member

    Yeah, because as I mentioned, we would charge additional for trimming and for 32 individual prints, that would have to be at least a $100 up-charge. When I said I would charge a little extra for trimming, that was pertaining specifically to four prints. I would charge a lot extra for trimming 32 of them. That service doesn't come free. I hate trimming about as much as weeding vinyl.

    What I probably wouldn't do is charge more for setting up 32 files in the RIP on a job that size. But if I had to produce 32 much smaller prints, I'd probably have to factor that in also. Call it a PITA tax.

    This would be assuming the files are all print-ready, which rarely happens. If they send vector files and I need to send rasterized proofs, I'd definitely have to charge more for that, as well. Lots of things factor in to the final price, but I like square foot pricing as a baseline to build off of.
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2020
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  6. ColorCrest

    ColorCrest Active Member

    745
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    Dec 11, 2017
    So Cal
    Again, depends on the marketplace. The larger signs shops in my area are not even on the radar of tire kickers. They are, however, on the short list of corporate and agency buyers who are consistent customers. Oftentimes requesting a quick, firm quote because it's just a portion of a project which, they themselves, are quoting for their own projects and customers. Just one example of so many reasons for quick quotes.
     
  7. Jester1167

    Jester1167 Premium Subscriber

    Yes but I guarantee you these have to be in writing, and if not they should. If they provide you with a clear concise list you can crunch the number in a spreadsheet and have accurate numbers emailed to the client in a few minutes. 95 percent of the time I get an email and have to dig through 20 pages of info trying to figure out what's vinyl. That takes hours to make sure you fully understand it and don't miss anything that will bite you in the a$$.

    I have excel spreadsheets for this. One that I can use to figure out the total sqft and one for pricing based on current material costs. Either of them can quote the installation as well. I also have one for travel and installation. When you have a centralized template that everyone uses, that gets updated to reflect current material pricing you will be able to sharpen your pencil. If you want different discount rates for different clients, you can output that as well. Once you get the hang of it they are easy to make and will save you time and money in the long run.
     
  8. ColorCrest

    ColorCrest Active Member

    745
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    Dec 11, 2017
    So Cal
    Question; How do you and your team actually keep a record of each of these spreadsheet calculations (of line items, say) for later reference?
     
  9. Jester1167

    Jester1167 Premium Subscriber

    I don't because I'm a group of one. Once the numbers are in a quote or email, I'm locked in.

    You could require the person quoting it to print it out. Save as never really works because half the time I accidentally hit save.

    None of the real calculations are visible. I have used it in an office setting many years ago. I have posted a couple to give you an idea of the power earlier this year. Attached are the ones I use off and on. Realize I made these over 10 years ago and haven't updated or reworked them. These are for a starting point.
     

    Attached Files:

  10. ColorCrest

    ColorCrest Active Member

    745
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    Dec 11, 2017
    So Cal
    That's the trouble with spreadsheets. They only lend themselves to a small portion of the overall task.

    You have a good beginning when you're ready to build you own software. In the meantime, see the attached image for an idea to make a more effective use of layout space of the bottom portion of your Wrap Films Quoting file.
     

    Attached Files:

  11. Jester1167

    Jester1167 Premium Subscriber

    Thanks for the suggestion. I haven't used or updated that spreadsheet in over 10 years. I know it is a mess. I was learning Excel at home and busy as a one-legged man in... when I created it. I know it's not very streamlined. I was trying to get as much function as possible with my limited Excel knowledge.
     
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  12. ColorCrest

    ColorCrest Active Member

    745
    102
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    Dec 11, 2017
    So Cal
    Not really a mess at all and no worries. If you decide to move up to another solution, know they all begin with spreadsheets much as you have created. They require a slightly different convention however, which is that each row needs to be uniquely identified. Maybe notice I just moved your product name over to its individual row.
     
  13. Jun Lanon

    Jun Lanon Member

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    Oct 9, 2018
    California
    For this install, don't forget to charge for dramamine.
     
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