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Price mark up?

Discussion in 'Deer and Gameheads' started by jessicaj, Oct 3, 2006.

  1. jessicaj

    jessicaj New Member

    Just wondering if you mark up the price of forms, eyes, supplies and what not or if you charge actual cost for it. I'm hoping to take in some customers here pretty soon, trying to get my permits in order and had some work orders printed up, just curious how to handle the price of supplies and what not. Thanks!
  2. Nick

    Nick New Member

    Not quite sure why you need to mark up the price of these items. I don't sell them to the customer, I sell a finished product and they pay me for my time and talent to produce the finished product. If you really wanted to tell them the cost of these items you need to take into consideration the cost of shipping with each item.

  3. Cole

    Cole Amateur Taxidermist

    Most taxidermy businesses charge a flat fee for a mount, including labor, supplies, etc. If your asking should you mark up the prices of supplies when figuring prices for your pricelist then I guess thats up to you. I do not, at least not directly. I add wages AND a shop profit, which would be similar to mark up. However, if a customer wants something out of a catalog, such as a rock base, panel, etc. then absolutely there is a markup. Not sure if I answered your question but hopefully this helps.
  4. EJ

    EJ Proud Member of: Unaffiliated, Free Agent

    I have a flat price every year for my deer mounts. But if you want a panel on back I usually mark up the price $10.
  5. Jims Wildlife Studio

    Jims Wildlife Studio Full Time PA Taxidermist

    Jessica, I don't think you have any idea. like Nick said you are not selling the form's the supplier's are. You have to come up with a price on a shoulder mount. The customer does not need to no what it cost's you to do a deer just your finished price. And if you don't have a taxidermy permit yet, all you can charge is the cost of the supplies that you pay. A mark up on supplies this way may be illeagle in most states. Good Luck, Jim
  6. Yes, 100% mark up on supplies + man hours = price to customer
  7. Becky P

    Becky P One must believe the glass is half full.

    EJ, $10? Where do you get a panel for $10?
  8. Cole

    Cole Amateur Taxidermist

    You don't get a "good" panel for $10.00!!!
  9. Becky P

    Becky P One must believe the glass is half full.

    EJ, I just saw your other post. I see now, you're ADDING $10 to the price of the panel. Right? I thought you were just adding 10 to the deer price. LOL Makes sense now.
  10. Old Fart

    Old Fart Active Member

    A REAL BUSINESS charges a mark up on everything! That's HOW they make a profit! How you determine that profit is strictly up to you. You could total up all the costs involved in putting together the deer head and then add the profit, or you could determine the total cost per hour of running your shop for the year and use that and your total hours in a deer head and use that figure. In a normal business DOUBLE that to determine your PROFIT. After you have determined that cost and the profit, THEN add on your wages.

    When you determine the hours in your mount don't forget the time that you spend with the customer. The time for shop clean up and maintenance. The time spent ordering supplies and checking them in when you receive them. The time spent paying bills and keeping the books. The time spent doing local errands and picking up the supplies you get locally. The time spent mowing the grass, shoveling snow and sweeping up outside the shop to keep it presentable for your customers. The time spent on the phone answering "stupid" questions and quoting prices. The time spent talking to business or school groups, it is business promotion after all! The time spent at shows, seminars, taking classes in art, photography or even business that would be a benefit to you in your business. Even the time spent reading Breakthrough. If you were working for someone else, ALL of this would be time that you would be getting PAID FOR.
  11. EJ

    EJ Proud Member of: Unaffiliated, Free Agent

    Sorry Becky,
    I just read my other post and I can see why you thought that. I guess I was watching the chicken dance while I was typing ??? Yeah ??? Dang bird! I add $10 to the price of the panel. ;D
  12. jessicaj

    jessicaj New Member

    Jim, I'm not sure what your trying to say by you don't think I have a clue but those may well be fightin words. I do know how you should figure your price for your average deer mount, but I have heard some people say that they mark up the price of supplies and I was just curious if that's a common thing to do. If you go to you car mechanic, he has a price that he pays for parts and than there is the price that YOU pay for that part, and it's usually double, that's the main reason I asked. I've been running numbers through my head constantly trying to make sure I get a fair price for my work and was just curious what others do. Old fart, you make a very good point but I'm not sure exactly what this means
    I have also heard some people say that they double the price of tanning. Just trying to figure out the best way of doing things.
  13. Warren Stutesman

    Warren Stutesman New Member

    Be careful when marking up prices of supplies. In MI we pay a use tax on supplies bought but if you mark up supplies then you have to charge and pay a sales tax. Yes I know it may be different elsewhere but this is Michigan.
  14. Greg Waite

    Greg Waite Active Member

    I run a sign shop for my 40 and we buy at wholesale, same as taxidermists, and we mark our supplies up 30%, then figure hours worked on + overhead + profit. The co I work for already has it's hourly overhead rate, so I figure the hours worked on(labor) + supplies (30%^) + overhead/ hours worked on + profit = final price. So jessica, I mark my supplies up 30%, I wish I could mark things up like I do at the sign shop, maybe I could actually make more money. But if the local economy won't pay it, you just shot yourself in the foot.
  15. Old Fart

    Old Fart Active Member

    That's just one way of determining a profit margin. Exclude your wages and double the costs that you have in the materials(tanning included, if you have them commercially tanned) that will give you a profit based on your investment of capital in the mount. As far as paying sales tax on that amount....How is the state going to determin that you have marked it up? My understanding of sales and use taxes is that they are mutually exclusive. At least in Minnesota. If you pay the use tax on your materials then you don't charge sales tax on it and if you don't pay use tax on your materials you must charge the customer sales tax.

    Remember the profit is also used to pay for the miscellaneous costs(power, heat, insurance, etc.) that you incur in the normal operation of a "business". A 30% mark up will probably not make you much of a profit. As a very general rule of thumb, the more times you turn over your inventory the lower your gross profit margin can be. It this business our inventory is not turned over a lot, so the gross margin has to be higher. A great example of that would be gasoline, since it's a product that's turned a lot, the gross profit margin is small.

    Reread the above posts and you will have a good idea of why most taxidermist are not good business people. It also will not surprise you that the most poorly attended seminars at any taxidermy convention are the business seminars.
  16. jessicaj

    jessicaj New Member

    I may not be understanding this right but here goes, so you figure your cost for all supplies and shipping and double it, and than add your hourly wage and overhead? Or figure the over head in with the supplies? I'm not buisness oriented by any means (yet I'm wanting to open one!) so I'm asking so I know what I'm doing. I like the way you expained the taxes, when it comes to that I havn't a clue, hopefully the DOR will be some help with that to. I know most taxidermists go out of buisness because they don't make enough money, but I don't want to be to over priced that no one can afford to come to me either. I'll have to run my numbers again and get everything figured out. I know one guy charges like $450 and another is so cheap (and does awful work) that it's not even worth mentioning. I figured since I was just starting to do deer heads for around $350 and see what happens, and maybe go up next year if I need to. Thanks Old Fart, you seem to know your stuff!
  17. Old Fart

    Old Fart Active Member

    Determining your "overhead" is the difficult part of your formula. Especially when you are just starting out. All of this requires that you keep EXTREMELY ACCURATE records of the time you spend in ALL taxidermy related activities for the year and all the extra costs that the shop is incurring. If you are in a separate building you should be able to keep track of many of them fairly easily. But you are probably in the house, so you will have to figure that based on the square footage dedicated to taxidermy. If you figure the costs in a deer head as I described and double it you will cover yourself, until you can actually figure that out.

    At $350 you are "buying work", you are giving each customer $100 for the privilege of doing their deer head. That's your PROFIT! Why are you even worrying about profit? You're giving it away! AND not covering your overhead!

    I just recently had a plumbing problem in a rental property I own. A good friend suggested a "new" plumber he was using in his construction business. I had him do the job and I was happy with the results. He did the job immediately and was quicker at it than I expected. BUT his hourly rate was EXACTLY the same as the established shops.

    If your work is good enough to be charging for, then charge to going rate and provide BETTER SERVICE. You will last a lot longer with QUALITY and SERVICE than you ever will with a LOW PRICE. And you will establish yourself with a much higher class client base.
  18. jessicaj

    jessicaj New Member

    Just out of curiosity what do you charge for a shoulder mount Old fart? Just to give me an idea of where I should start my pricing. I thought maybe start at $350 this year and maybe go up to $400 or even $450 next year if there is enough work. Thanks for taking the time to explain all this!
  19. Old Fart

    Old Fart Active Member

    I charge $525
  20. When completing your customer invoices just note the charges to complete the shoulder mount. Under this info statement note the head and neck position info, ear position(s), head skinning/fleshing charges, whether or not there are any shot holes and location and whether or not the cape is cut long enough for a full shoulder mount. It is also a good idea to note whether it has been drug and therefore the hair on the shoulders is damaged, and whether or not it is fresh when brought in. Have the ears been sliced to tie a tag to the deer?

    You would be wasting too much of your time to list the mounting items one by one, especially setting prices as you roll along. You would have to set a new price for every different size and position deer form. How many sizes are there?
    DTS 1046 likes this.