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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi All,

Question for those who are screen printing their designs on demand. (Not sure if @porkchopharry and @NoXid still do this or who else might screen print on demand)


  • How do you price your shirts? What formula do you use to determine price?
  • Do you charge more of a premium since you are printing to order?

I imagine you keep your screens for your designs and don't have to go through reclaim process and setup every time. Which is actually a smart idea I need to incorporate.

I am struggling with pricing. Specifically if I should stock blanks or order blanks as the customer order them. With this method my supplier charges about $20 for shipping which I either pass to the customer or lose profit.

***Background***
My focus is quality first. My niche is in the streetwear/sneaker culture.

I initially started with DTG dropshipping but realized some of my designs looked much better screen printed, specifically Pantone color matched designs. I then tried plastisol transfers but because I offer custom colors this wasn't profitable especially bc I have a lot of designs and ordering the transfers was adding up when I was not sure how new design would sell. So, ultimately I started screen printing my own designs, that way I could come up with designs and not have to worry about minimums, turn around times from vendors etc. If a design doesn't sell I can just remove it from my site or rework it. But the question again is how much to charge?

Cost of Materials (Ink, Shirt etc) x 2 for Wholesale? Wholesale x 2 for Customer Price?

Also, how much to inventory (shirts) to hold if any?

Any advice and feedback on you guys do it would help me alot

Thanks in advance
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
You're already charging a pretty hefty fee for a tee. I wouldn't go any higher than that.

Hi Splathead,

I'm actually looking to redo my prices now that I'm doing the printing myself.

I imagine actually the prices will drop. Don't know why i never considered saving the screens before which would save time and money. :confused: But since recently being laid off from my full time job and trying to make a go of this business full time and not go back to a cubicle I'm learning to ask for help and learn from others.
 

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If you're getting your desired sales from your current pricing, I wouldn't change prices just because you're producing in-house.

How much lower would your price be for a tee if you went with Cost of Materials (Ink, Shirt etc) x 2 for Wholesale? Wholesale x 2 for Customer Price?

If your customers/followers are use to a certain price point from you, it's probably not good for the brand if you're suddenly selling for a fraction of that amount.
 

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Ideally, regardless of production method, one would price so as to maximize Total Profit:
Units * Price = Total Profit

Which gets us to Economics 101 and the Price Elasticity of Demand: how sensitive are your customers to price? How much more would they buy at a lower price vs. how much less at a higher price, and where is the sweet spot that results in the highest Total Profit?

I may still have that degree in Economics, but I don't have corporate minions to test and research the best pricing strategy for me, so that leaves it largely to my gut instinct, as the fickleness of retail sort of overwhelms the validity of my small sample size when I test pricing options.

For example, a few weeks ago I had quite a few orders for 2 or 3 shirts. This week I tested a free shipping promotion, buy 2 or more and get free shipping. If I had run that promotion the prior 2 weeks, I would have been under the totally mistaken impression that it had worked, and worked quite well. Then I would have wondered why it suddenly did not work at all! I got not even one double order the week I actually ran the promotion. It all feels very much like sacrificing to some unseen gods and attributing anything that happens thereafter to having either pleased, or displeased, said gods.

So how do I price?

I decide how much I want to pay myself for printing ONE shirt. Doing the DIY POD thing, you will often being dragging out a screen, inking it, printing one shirt, then cleaning the screen and putting it away. Rinse, repeat with multiple orders of ONE. This is especially tedious with multi-color designs, which I generally avoid. So how much time does it take you to accomplish that task? What is that time worth to you?

I take that desired profit per unit and then consider the various platforms on which I sell, the cut they take, how I handle shipping for each platform, and my best understanding of the Price Elasticity of Demand of buyers on each individual platform.

Another factor is the uniqueness of your art. One of my niches is very underserved by the marketplace, and my designs stand out as those of someone who understands the niche, not just as an outsider with stereotypical notions of what would be funny to insiders. I spun that off as its own brand/store on a platform that is the least sensitive to price. I net almost $20 a shirt by the time you include some extra padding I built into the shipping charge. Despite the pricing, I sell more of this one niche than everything else combined.

But different customers use different platforms, so I also sell those very same shirts on another platform where between free shipping and higher platform fees, I net more like $14 a shirt. That is not leaving $6 on the table, as these people would not find me on the other platform, nor would most of them pay the higher total cost.

My target is actually $15 per unit, so I can live with $14. I also do some inkjet transfers (different art, different stores), and have a target of of $10 for those, as that takes much less time.


BLANKS
I have a local distributor, so can Will Call pickup my blank orders, no shipping for most items I use. There are a few things I must order from afar, so carry stock and order in batches of $200 to get free shipping. In this case, I keep the color options real simple to avoid having to sink a lot into blank inventory. Also, Alpha Broder has a thing they call Flex shipping that costs only $4.99. Instead of shipping to your door, you go pick up your package at your local FedEx store. (You need to have a credit card setup with your account in order to see the Flex shipping option at checkout.)


DIY screen print POD is sort of a crazy notion, but it can work if you don't have too many different designs to support. Else one simply couldn't keep up with printing so many different screens. I've pushed the numbers well past the point of good sense, but I have some best sellers, and then ones that sell very sporadically, so in any given week I'm only printing a fraction of my total designs.


I'm not sure there is an answer for you in all of that ... but perhaps it will help you find one :eek:
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
If you're getting your desired sales from your current pricing, I wouldn't change prices just because you're producing in-house.

How much lower would your price be for a tee if you went with Cost of Materials (Ink, Shirt etc) x 2 for Wholesale? Wholesale x 2 for Customer Price?

If your customers/followers are use to a certain price point from you, it's probably not good for the brand if you're suddenly selling for a fraction of that amount.
Splathead,

Very good points. Especially when you mentioned customers being use to a specific price point.

Now shirts sell but not exactly flying off the shelves where I'm to overwhelmed with orders. There are some dry days with 0 orders, not sure how normal that is but I could stand to market more as well and I would love to sell more, but wouldn't we all :D

I think lowering prices too much can work against me also. Like you said going too low can give the impression of an inferior product/quality.

Still in search of that sweet spot. :confused:
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I'm not sure there is an answer for you in all of that ... but perhaps it will help you find one <img src="http://www.t-shirtforums.com/images/smilies/redface.gif" border="0" alt="" title="Embarrassment" class="inlineimg" />
NoXid,

Wow, you actually helped me a ton. I've been using S&S because they are in NJ and I get my orders next day but I just opened an account with Alpha Border and added a CC. Theres a fedex literally 2 mins from thats open 24 hours.

$5 shipping when in need a specific shirt/color is a big improvement to my bottom line. I'm in between the Ma and Pa locations which great also. Wish I knew about this before.

Thanks so much.

I'm also still brushing up on "Price Elasticity of Demand" so much to digest in your post.

I also picked up some samples of Permaset Supercover to try out. Would be nice to print without a white underbase on darks.

Thanks
 

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NoXid,

Wow, you actually helped me a ton. I've been using S&S because they are in NJ and I get my orders next day but I just opened an account with Alpha Border and added a CC. Theres a fedex literally 2 mins from thats open 24 hours.

$5 shipping when in need a specific shirt/color is a big improvement to my bottom line. I'm in between the Ma and Pa locations which great also. Wish I knew about this before.

Thanks so much.

I'm also still brushing up on "Price Elasticity of Demand" so much to digest in your post.

I also picked up some samples of Permaset Supercover to try out. Would be nice to print without a white underbase on darks.

Thanks
Cool. I too learned about Alpha's Flex shipping on here, so returning the favor and paying it forward. I had to call and ask for my account to be enabled for case pricing twice before they did it for me. That's something PorkChop told me about. If the prices you see seem insanely high, call and ask for case pricing.

Oh, and I stated the formula incorrectly:
Units * Price = Total Profit

Should be more like:
Units * Net Profit Per Unit = Total Net Profit
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Cool. I too learned about Alpha's Flex shipping on here, so returning the favor and paying it forward. I had to call and ask for my account to be enabled for case pricing twice before they did it for me. That's something PorkChop told me about. If the prices you see seem insanely high, call and ask for case pricing.
Thanks will do. Current prices seem to be in line with what I paid with S&S. Having that option to order a couple of shirts when I get a order for colors I don't have in hand is great.

BTW, unrelated, I picked up some samples of Permaset SC to try out. I'm coming from Green Galaxy WB inks and would love to print without needing to underbase on dark garments.

Thanks again
 

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BTW, unrelated, I picked up some samples of Permaset SC to try out. I'm coming from Green Galaxy WB inks and would love to print without needing to underbase on dark garments.
That transition was harder for me than it should have been. Be sure to replenish the moisture lost by the ink to the emulsion and air when you put used ink back in a container. I keep the used ink separate from the virgin ink so I always have a reference for what fresh ink looks and feels like. Else you are likely to end up a bit drier with every use until you suddenly can't get a decent print no matter what you do.

GG is much less prone to this issue. SC is very prone to it.
 
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