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worrying prices for banners.

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Post Tue Apr 20, 2010 9:38 pm

worrying prices for banners.

some annoying people on ebay are selling banners for £15 for a 4x2 banner which i would sell for about £25.00. this completely destroys the market and i feel i am losing customers this way as I have enquires and people just go quiet. I sell my banners for (approx.) 2.75 a square foot cos i just cant compete. what are peoples views on ebay infecting the market??
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Post Tue Apr 20, 2010 9:43 pm

Hi Stuart,

We sell a 4' x 2' for just over £16 +VAT, we're not an ebay business - have proper premises and have been going since 1992. Maybe its down to the price you can buy the raw materials etc but we're quite happy knocking out this banner for this kind of money.

Its the sort of work that, generally, gets people interested in our companies and services and most of the time they come back for other, more profit making, items.

I do agree though that ebay is making most things in business far more competitive but being honest we always search there when looking for a good deal on something.

Just my two penneth.

Andy
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Post Tue Apr 20, 2010 9:52 pm

Actually the cheapo "sign" companies are doing me a big favor, because the cheapo customers buy their "signs" from them.
They deserve each other.
I used to worry about the cheapos hurting my business but to be honest they are no competition. They can price themselves right out of business.
I'd rather sit on my couch and watch TV than sell someone a banner that cheap.
I keep on putting out the best quality best looking work I can, and charge what it's really worth.
Love....Jill
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Post Tue Apr 20, 2010 10:01 pm

The trick to eBay is to offer something that others do not and charge appropriately, stay one step ahead of the cheapsters and rip off merchants, if you have successful listings then try to protect them, use more than one eBay account as unscrupulous sellers will rip off ideas not protected, spread the eggs tween the baskets etc! as for the banners, no point competing for pennies. I wouldn't even get the knife out to cut the PVC for £15!
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Post Tue Apr 20, 2010 10:18 pm

I too could sell them for the £15/£16 mentioned. I can make a 4x2 non-hemmed / brass eyeleted (even full colour) banner for (£x - let's just say less than the cost of a slightly tasty sandwich) in materials in a PVC....plus my time. For me, it's not worth switching on the machine for that sort of return unless I was doing at least 6 or 7 at a time. That's just the nature of my setup.

Others will do a full design, proof it back to the client, offer a heavier weight material and hem for that sort of money. If they make a buck...or thousands great!

I'm retailing 4x2s at well over your £25 and sell enough of them, but don't push it as I know the market is flooded with cheaper mail order / design-it-online alternatives. etc.

I prefer to do larger banners - more return for the same amount of time.

People will always want dirt cheap stuff. Two options: sell it, or compete in other ways. ie. stunning service.

There's been pages upon pages of debate over cheap prices killing the market and whether it really is or not.

Had a chuckle today: local company (with shop premises) is offering a transit livery for £70 or an escort van for £50 (side panels). Have seen similar outfits offering transits for £50...they never seem to last that long doing it.

Like others - let the cheapskates chase the cheapos...'cos you can be guaranteed that they'll try to discount you for A) promise of paying in "cash", B) the promise of more work C) getting a quote for 20...then ordering one

If you aren't wanting that end of the market - stay out of it. Unless you are set up to compete / be a player it'll kill you.
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Post Wed Apr 21, 2010 4:00 pm

I have noticed quite a big reduction in prices on ebay over the last year, a pair of 600mm x 300mm magnetic signs at less than fifteen quid, a 3ft x 2ft photo onto canvas at 16 quid just before christmas, these people seem to sell quite a few and must be making some form of profit from it, it is just another market and if you can make it work for you then great, I personally let them get on with it. Not everyone wants or trusts the cheapest, for others, to get it as cheap as possible is more important than anything.
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Post Wed Apr 21, 2010 5:02 pm

I posted almost the exact same discussion a while ago. I don't think i could make it profitable to spend the time getting the artwork ok'd on anything for £15.

But if you have got the set up to pump them out at that rate then fair enough.

On ebay i have seen people selling the entire side of a van for a tenner recently. All i can see them getting out of that is the feedback points.

Martin, are you naked in your picture?

:o :D

Liam
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Post Wed Apr 21, 2010 5:10 pm

Liam Pattison wrote:
Martin, are you naked in your picture?

:o :D

Liam


Getting worried about you Liam :lol1: :lol1:
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Post Wed Apr 21, 2010 5:19 pm

Gary Birch wrote:
Liam Pattison wrote:
Martin, are you naked in your picture?

:o :D

Liam


Getting worried about you Liam :lol1: :lol1:


Someone had to ask!!

:lol1: :lol1: :lol1:
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Post Wed Apr 21, 2010 5:20 pm

Liam Pattison wrote:Martin, are you naked in your picture?

:o :D

Liam


Do we really want to know Liam :-?
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Post Wed Apr 21, 2010 5:22 pm

Liam Pattison wrote:
Gary Birch wrote:
Liam Pattison wrote:
Martin, are you naked in your picture?

:o :D

Liam


Getting worried about you Liam :lol1: :lol1:


Someone had to ask!!

:lol1: :lol1: :lol1:


Noooo no they didn't :roll: :roll: :lol1: :lol1:
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Post Wed Apr 21, 2010 5:27 pm

I'm sorry but selling a banner at that price is just undervaluing the sign business.
Just can't see the point in investing in equipment to basically give the stuff away. £16 would be OK for a reasonable quantity order but as a one-off it just isn't worth the hassle. When you look at labour rates for other professions, why are we supposed to work for peanuts?
In fact instead of me making banners I could just get them off a cheaply priced sign business and take a profit for doing diddly squat!
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Post Wed Apr 21, 2010 6:10 pm

Don't feel bad, I already asked him that years ago.
:oops:
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Post Wed Apr 21, 2010 6:36 pm

Jillbeans wrote:Don't feel bad, I already asked him that years ago.
:oops:


Glad it's not just me :)
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Post Wed Apr 21, 2010 7:59 pm

I think £35 for a roller banner including print and carry case is even worse.
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Post Wed Apr 21, 2010 8:31 pm

That's the way of the world.
Its called competition,
Henry Ford sold cars cheap, but sold millions :D

at the other end of the scale Rolls Royce Motors went skint, because they thought they could charge a premium for their quality.

If you cant compete, at the same level, then find another level.

no good complaining that the flea bay sellers are preventing you from selling your banners, if you are overpriced in the first place.

I shop around for products, like we all do, and choose cheapest like for like,
I do however look for service and back up quality.
but the person who wants 1 or 2 banners from a low quality image is not interested in back up or quality.


Move on

Peter




Peter
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Post Wed Apr 21, 2010 8:39 pm

It used to be called 'market forces'........ :roll:

The oldie comment on pricing was:

Chap gets a quote from 2 places.....one for £100 and one for £50. He goes to the guy who quoted £100 and asks why he charges so much in comparison to the guy down the road....The guy charging £100 says if you don't like my price why are you here.....

The answer ....because the guy selling for £50 doesn't have any.....

The answer to the 'cheap e-bay etc' sellers is that now 'everyone' has some!!
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Post Wed Apr 21, 2010 10:19 pm

Its the nature of the market there will always be a cheap and expensive spread. If you are at the top end then you must offer high quality, superb customer service and most of all peace of mind. Just remember for every M&S there will be Tesco, Aldi and Lidel for bargain hunting customer......
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Post Thu Apr 22, 2010 6:20 am

Your comparing your sign shop to a company that sells a commodity. A lot of businesses are setting up to produce a large quantity of jobs at cheaper prices. They aren't doing this to up sell more profitable products. They are making a profit at this selling price.

They have automated a lot of the production and administration which shops of our size don't need to do or don't bother to.

I've seen videos of some of aka vista print suppliers and the whole factory is fully automated. The only human tasks are fork lifting pallets on and off trucks. Loading machines with more materials.

Everything else is automated to the point the job is even put into a box, bubble wrapped, labeled updated on their system and dispatched.

If we had a setup like this we would be able to cut the ass out of many products we produce.

It's the same as a letter press printer trying to compete with us digital printers, or a traditional painter trying to compete painting 100 billboards versus a hp super wide format printer.
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Post Thu Apr 22, 2010 9:39 am

Have a look at this news item.
The guy paid £40 for a professional banner.
Looking at the size I thought it rather cheap but then looked closer.
Glossy vinyls, with a design which breaks just about every rule in the book!
See, you get what you pay for in most instances.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article ... esore.html
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Post Thu Apr 22, 2010 9:54 am

I looked at this from a slightly different angle.

We all like to think that we are ace signmakers and that the quality of our product, our design skills, experience, expertise and professionalism is beyond reproach. Those perceived attributes make us think that we are worth a good profit margin on whatever we do.

Now, if we even think of competing with the low cost cheap end of the market, does that not drag us down to their level? In those circumstances can we reasonably expect anything other than the pocket money that they are earning? I would suggest not.


Having said that, Jason is also spot on with his comments. Your prices have to be governed by how you go about your work. I would even go a stage further. As you will all probably know, our area of expertise is vehicles, and when I first started working from home, with no staff and virtually overhead free, I could do one-off vans as cheap as anybody, and still make good money. The reason was that if I spent too much time piddling around with layouts, it didn't matter because I could do it in the evening, maybe whilst watching TV. Nowadays, with premises and staff, it is different and every minute needs to be accounted for and charged, because the staff want paying at the end of the week.

The result is that today we struggle to compete pricewise with our local competitors on the one-off jobs. On the other hand, we can eat them alive on the bigger work because they can't cope with the volume. Those are the extremes, and of course, there are many shades of grey in between, but you get the idea.

I am convinced that for decent returns, and I think I've said this elsewhere, you need to pick the area that you want to be involved in, then set up your company to produce that product in the most efficient and economical way that you can.


Discuss. :D
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Post Thu Apr 22, 2010 10:02 am

I think John explains it very well. For us its banners but the same thing applies to cheap litho print. It can be as likely that the company is huge with millions £ in equipment but set up for volume as a bloke in a shed with little overheads (that would be me but I wouldn't do banners that cheap!)
Digital print is not hard to buy and thats the reason I don't have my own kit I just concentrate on providing a file that is ready to go. for my relatively small needs the kit would be for convenience rather than out and out profit.
Alan D
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Post Thu Apr 22, 2010 1:43 pm

Well put John.....there's big players and little guys all looking to make a living (of sorts) so prices will vary with overheads, quality, service and your target market...so hopefully we can all live happily together... :lol1:

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