In this article, we discuss five of the most common mistakes made by screen printers and t-shirt printers.
Each of the five mistakes can be prevented.
We discuss each mistake and provide a solution for the prevention of each one.
Want to make more money for your shop? Want to operate more efficiently?
Read on... this article is for you.
Not Pricing for Profit
One of the biggest mistakes any printer can make is not pricing with profit in mind. There are many printers whose idea of price setting is to simply undercut the competition. This is just plain foolish, as you do not know what their cost of doing business is. While competition will always have some bearing on pricing, you can not operate your business profitably without knowing what your costs are. For more information on this very important subject, the U.S. Small Business Administration offers a good tutorial on "Pricing Your Products." It can be found here: http://www.sba.gov.
Not Getting Jobs out on Time
How many times have you had a customer tell you that your competition left them "high and dry" and they did not get their order when promised? This is one of the best ways to ruin your reputation, especially if you are a local printer. Never take on a job unless you are absolutely sure you can deliver the order on time.
Wasting Money On Shipping
With the cost of shipping being so high these days and with "fuel surcharge" increases being added to every shipment, you will save money if you do the following:
1) Consolidate as many orders as possible when purchasing blanks and supplies from your vendors.
2) Use more than one carrier for shipping. For example, when shipping out smaller orders, it could save you money and time by using the United States Postal Service (usps.gov) for shipping. They deliver on Saturday, provide free Priority Mail boxes and will pick up the boxes at your location for free. You may also realize some savings if you use one carrier for in bound shipments and another for outbound shipments. Shop around. You will find that the competition for shipping, particularly among the two main carriers UPS and FedEx has become very competitive.
Giving Credit Too Freely
Have you ever been left holding the bag by a customer who would not pay? Always try to get at least 50% down on any order. That way if the customer turns out to be a deadbeat at least you will most likely have covered the cost of the blanks. Extending credit is a privilege not a right, despite what many people think. Remember you are a printer, not a banker.
Selling Unprofitable Products
Take a look at the products that you offer. Do you sell some custom printed items (usually sold in quantities of one or two) that realize a profit of just a few dollars? Your time can be better spent going after orders that will produce a much higher profit for the amount of time and effort that is wasted on low margin orders. Be choosy about the type of products that you sell and the quantities that you offer.
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ASPA Staff and others