April '22

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G R A PH I C S - PR O.C O M 2 0 2 2 A P R I L G R A P H I C S P R O 9 1 Why does your plumber charge $100 per hour of work and you only charge $45 per hour for engraving time? Our indus- try has a problem of undervaluing laser engraving time. ose that have marketed "free" engrav- ing have made this problem worse. Please don't add to this issue. Be a craft person with a high skill level and make a good living from your craft. ENGRAVING CUSTOMER PRODUCTS ere are many risks when engraving your customers' products — whether they pur- chased them elsewhere or made them. It may be a dicult product to engrave due to shape or the engraving in a small loca- tion. e product may be hard to hold in place. Spelling could be wrong, or the cus- tomer's handwriting was more dicult to read than you thought. e quality of the graphic they gave you was poor. Your laser broke down in the middle of the job. ere are a host of things that can go wrong. You may decide not to engrave a product you did not sell. I can't blame you for this decision. If you do engrave your custom- ers' products, consider these issues: 1. You are not making any markup on the product to add to your prot margin, and you are not covering your costs of unboxing and reboxing time (handling time). 2. Charge or calculate your laser en- graving hourly rate you apply to the job at a higher price than you would charge for engraving products you sell. 3. Have rules in place about who pays for replacing a product if there is a problem or the customer is not happy with the result. is is critical when engraving expensive products, family heirlooms or items of historic value. PREPARING PERSONALIZED PRODUCTS FOR SHIPPING IS OFTEN COSTLY Many times, if you are shipping a person- alized product to a customer, packaging and shipping boxes must be purchased and stored. e more assembly required or cus- tomization of the product, the more time and materials are needed to ship products without breakage. Always consider the material cost and time it takes when ship- ping. Also, remember that your cost of the actual shipping is far greater than Amazon, Target or Walmart would pay. You are also paying for the product to be shipped to you. at cost must be considered in your pricing. is is especially true when you are placing a special order for a customer and not including it in a routine weekly or monthly order. HOW DO YOU STAND OUT FROM YOUR COMPETITION? Far too many businesses take the shortcut of lowering their prices to stand out from the competition. It's easy and quick to do. Above: Seeing the recipients smile in pride makes our hard work worthwhile. Attend- ing an event you worked on is important to having continuous joy for your business. Right: A custom base I designed, made by a woodworking partner. Creative projects provide excitement and fun to our jobs.

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