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Sign Shop Software - What do you use?

Discussion in 'Sales, Marketing, Pricing Etc.' started by BFS, Oct 24, 2019.

  1. BFS

    BFS Member

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    We are trying to find a sign program for a small business that will allow us to:
    • Enter each of our materials and the price per
    • Enter overhead, labor, etc
    • Quote and Invoice
    • Track progress in production
    I have run across ShopVOX, Printavo, Estimate, SignTracker and a couple others. Are there ones you guys have had success with? I appreciate any suggestions you may have. Thanks!
     
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  2. d fleming

    d fleming Very Active Member

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    been using estimate for years
     
    • Like Like x 1
  3. StarSign

    StarSign Active Member

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    ShopVox works great for us.
     
  4. Stacey K

    Stacey K I like making signs

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    My system probably isn't for you but maybe it will help someone else...

    Here's my one-woman-show $10 system...I'm cheap and I like to keep things simple.

    I calculated my hourly rate by using the Signcraft worksheet and recheck after taxes are done as I have all the overhead info at my fingertips for the year.

    I use Wave (free and simple) for estimates and invoices, no option for inventory so I track it on an Excel spreadsheet with formulas that calculate linear yard, feet, inches for vinyl and $Start 2019 $End 2019. Both are super easy and fast - no bells and whistles just exactly the information needed for tax purposes!

    I use my desktop as a production scheduler. I had to dish out $10 for "Fences" which allows you to organize your desktop with large folders that your icons stick in - my categories are Estimate, Artwork, Proof Out, On Order, In Production, On Hold, Invoicing.

    Inventory - as I purchase things I print the vendor invoice out...every vendor invoice gets a PO# which is a sticker. It goes on a clipboard until it arrives. Upon arrival items get a barcode sticker with a 4 digit number on it. There is another sticker I put with the vinyl which includes color, brand, price per linear inch, etc for reference.The barcode number gets written on the vendor invoice next to the item. This info is entered into Excel as inventory. As I use the vinyl for jobs I write the barcode # on my job ticket and the price per linear inch so i can calculate exactly how much each job costs. If vinyl fails 6 months down the road I can track exactly which roll and which invoice it came from. Every job gets a job # sticker on the job ticket- everything can be cross referenced and found super quickly if needed. Job ticket tracks labor, costs, etc. I consider entering this info into Excel but I'm too lazy. My spreadsheet contains date, PO, barcode #, vendor, brand, type, color, description, price, qty, width, yards - then calculates the following" linear feet, inches, square inches, price per yard, foot, linear inch, square inch, 2019 Start, 2019 End. I use the same sheet for substrates just don't fill in everything. The main priority is total $ 2019 Start and 2019 End, everything else is just extra - I can quickly filter to look for something or mark something as "out of inventory". I don't need 3/4 of the calculations but I just really love making spreadsheets. Every Monday I take the vendor invoices and go through Wave to cross reference each transaction and mark them "completed". I take photos of any store receipts and upload into Wave using the phone app. I scan all my vendor invoices into OneDrive and label them "306 Fellers" (PO#/vendor) and toss the paper copy. Job tickets get filed in manilla folders.

    That's my $10 system LOL

    Of course all of this can be done in Quickbooks or Estimate which I've used in the past but stickers and spreadsheets are more fun! I've been doing my own taxes for about 10 years but had to hire an accountant this year due to divorce and he was impressed with my 2 sheets of paper for my business. One report from Wave and one screen clipping from Excel...done!
     
    • Like Like x 6
  5. Boudica

    Boudica Active Member

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    Dec 21, 2018
    Spokane, WA
    Stacey, I'm cracking up at the Quickbooks ad - right in the middle of your post. (I realize you have no control over it). It shows up right after this: "Here's my one-woman-show $10 system...I'm cheap and I like to keep things simple." Then bam, a quickbooks ad.
    :roflmao:. :corndog:
     
  6. Stacey K

    Stacey K I like making signs

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    Wisconsin
    LMAO!!! That's too funny!!!
     
  7. bannertime

    bannertime Very Active Member

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    No
    I liked EstiMate for it's variety of adjustments and options. That said, we don't use it anymore and stuck with physical invoice slots, quickbooks, trello, and a home brewed estimating spreadsheet for jobs that I can't quote using our preset pricing in Quickbooks.
     
    • Like Like x 1
    • Agree Agree x 1
  8. Bly

    Bly Very Active Member

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    Corebridge.
     
  9. Andy D

    Andy D Very Active Member

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    I went and checked that out, nice looking program.
    Do you happen to know if:
    1. the users in a licence can be used at different shops? We have three locations and the owner would never pay that price three times.
    2 when it says "Auto-Email Customer Communication" can you set it up to auto email customers to update them as their project goes through quote - design - print - fabrication - ect.?
    That would cut down on a ton of customers calling in to check the status of their signs.
     
  10. Bly

    Bly Very Active Member

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    Sydney
    Not sure how the licensing works for multiple locations but that function is built in. I believe Fastsigns use it over there.

    Yes you can set it up to notify customers on the progress of their jobs.
    I don't want to bombard them with emails so just have it notify when their job is built and ready to either pick up or deliver.
    That does reduce the amount of phone calls and manual emails.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  11. zspace

    zspace Merchant Member

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    We have used Cyrious Control for years. We will be switching to Corebridge over the next few months.
     
  12. ColorCrest

    ColorCrest Active Member

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    So Cal
    Any particular reason you're changing? Cyrious is strong software.
     
  13. ColorCrest

    ColorCrest Active Member

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    So Cal
    If you're not aware, ShopVOX and Printavo are at a certain price point and EstiMate and SignTracker are at a much different price point.

    Also FYI, you might be able to generate an invoice with some packages but it's more typical to export data to other software such as QuickBooks as preferred by bookkeepers. The sign shop software can hold vast amounts of production and billing data but only a small portion is actually necessary for the export to an accounting package.

    In any case, the choice of software is a rather critical business decision and any desire to change systems later oftentimes can become a challenge.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  14. zspace

    zspace Merchant Member

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    Houston, TX
    We like Cyrious a lot and have used them for years. We looked at a number of systems and selected Corebridge because of the great experience we've had with Cyrious.

    The main reason for the switch is that Corebridge is cloud based and gives us more flexibility with a distributed work force. We have work from home designers and sales people, and maintaining a server based system creates a lot of technology challenges. Other big reasons: We liked the on-line proofing (had issues with the Cyrious version) and customer portal. Plus we are moving to a paperless workflow and Corebridge has a lot more functionality for creating and managing production queues.

    Alan
     
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