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Calculating Frame Pricing from Standard Size Supplier Price Lists

Many labs and other suppliers create “simplified” frame pricing methods for photographers that actually complicate the frame calculation process by pricing the frames by print size rather than a traditional frame calculation method using united inches.

Because ProSelect uses a dynamic pricing solution, it allows you to auto-calculate frame prices for any size, right on the fly, for your customers without having to reference an extensive chart of prices or go through the labs online ordering system to find pricing. This also saves you from entering hundreds of different prices as calculations can usually be done with six to eight pricing groups.

The easiest way to way to determine pricing is to find out the average cost per united inch. A united inch is a standard framing unit that is the combined width and height in inches, as a single measure of length. For example, a 16x20 is 36 U.I. (16+20).

We have provided a very basic calculator for use with Microsoft Excel that allows you to enter sizes and prices for frames (prices come from your supplier), and it will calculate the average cost per united inch. This value can then be entered into the Orders -> Price List Setup -> Framing. From there you can use the pricing method UI - United Inched (L+W) with the “Include markup rate checked”.

When selecting sizes for your calculation, it’s best to choose sizes that you most likely sell for framing. If you sell frames for mostly larger prints, start at about 16x20 and go up. If you sell mostly smaller frames, base your averages on the small sizes. Usually what you will find is the pricing on the smaller frames tends to be slightly higher per inch because the suppliers have added include assembly labor and that amount is amortized over less moulding.

This pricing method is not exact meaning that when you average the U.I cost, the calculated cost without your markup factor may be slightly higher or lower than the pricing shown on the frame companies list. But, when you add in the adequate markup factor, your profitability will be covered.

Using the Average Price Per United Inch Calculator

Download the Average Price Per United Inch Calculator from here. To use it, you’ll need Microsoft Excel or Apple Numbers. Once you have the file downloaded, open the file in your spreadsheet program. You need to have the pricing from your frame supplier. This may be online, a download or in printed form.

Frame price and calculator

Usually, suppliers break their pricing down into price groups or categories, or product lines. You’ll need to calculate the pricing for each group.  

Choose at least four sizes from the price list and type the prices into the yellow fields for the selected size. Each time you enter a price, the spreadsheet will auto-calculate and updated average cost. Once you have entered the sizes, open ProSelect.

Adding Prices to ProSelect

  1. Go to Orders -> Price List Setup. Choose the Frames tab.
  2. Click Add
  3. Type in a description. RF Price Group 2 (initials for the frame company and a group ID)
  4. Pricing Method: Choose UI - United Inches (L+W)
  5. Check “Include Markup Rate”
  6. Click Add new Item
 in the price field, add the Average UI price from the calculator
  7. Don’t add a markup yet.
  8. Click Save

    Frame Pricing

Assigning a Frame to a Price Group

  1. Go to Resources -> Setup Frames
  2. Select a frame, a series moulding or a FrameGroup that are in that price category.
  3. Assign the Price Group: RF Price Group 1
  4. Click Close

    Frame group pricing

  5. Now go to Working with Images, and choose an image.
  6. Click the Select Size Icon (ruler) and choose a frame from the Price Group you just created and add the print to the shopping cart.
  7. If your frame is not showing up under the print price, click Add with Extras.
  8. Under Frame, click the drop-down and the top listing (Default) is the frame you assigned. When you choose it, the price will show up and should be close to the price provided on the suppliers price list. Compare it.
  9. Now, change the size of the print and your frame price will change. Compare that to the price list.
  10. You can check other sizes also if you like, the pricing should be close. If it’s way off, you may need to check all the numbers and start again. If your prices are coming up high or low (remember, this is not the selling price yet), adjust the price per united inch a bit. If the pricing looks correct, we’ll now add a markup factor.

To add your markup, go back to the Orders -> Price List Setup -> Framing. Choose the price formula and at the bottom, you can add a Markup factor. If you add a 3 in the markup field, the selling price will be three times your product cost. If a frame costs you $100, the selling price would be $300. 

You’ll have to decide your own markup factor.

Typically, frames are marked up about 3x, but lower priced moulding may be marked up 4 to 4.5 times, whereas higher priced frames may only carry a 2X markup.

You’ll need to repeat this process for each of your frame pricing groups.

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