Pricing vehicle wraps is one of the most important aspects of the wrap game. It can be very difficult to give your customer a general price without a design in-hand. At our shop we have found over the years that it is just as profitable to produce partial wraps as full wraps. Not only does the customer get what he or she wants, but it saves your shop material, labor and time.
You are selling your customer a high-impact mobile billboard – the price is worth its value.
You will have customers call on the phone for quotes on vehicle wraps. They will ask for the pricing of a full wrap. They don’t realize it, but this is a very vague question; it’s no different than calling a construction company and asking how much to build a house. Most customers don’t realize how many elements go into a vehicle wrap – even a partial wrap.
PROVIDING A QUOTE
To make things easier, purchase some kind of vehicle template software to use for quoting. This software is great for design work but is also a useful sales tool. Scale the customer’s vehicle to size and determine the square footage amount for the job.
Keep in mind that different elements of the vehicle will affect the price. Wrapping bumpers, roofs, side-view mirrors, and adding window perf will significantly increase the price for a vehicle wrap.
If you don’t have vehicle template software, take straight-on photographs of the vehicle. Measure the door or any noticeable area that can be used as a guide when blowing up the photograph. If the door measures 48" wide, make a box 48" wide in your design software, place it over the side shot of the vehicle, and blow the photograph up so that the 48" box fits right on the door as measured. You can then use this as a guide to estimate how much material will be used. Keep in mind the width of your printer when determining how may runs of material you will need to complete the job.
MAIN PRICING ELEMENTS
It’s very important to develop a clear pricing structure for your clients. Be sure you are including every aspect of the wrap job in your price, including design time, materials and estimated labor costs. Also, make sure to charge the amount that your wrap job is worth, letting the quality of your work support the price. Here’s the breakdown of the pricing elements:
Always get a deposit on artwork before you show your client anything. There are instances when you may need to waive artwork fees to sell a job. Keep in mind that this is your design, your idea, and your message that will make the customer money. Design charges can run anywhere from $250 to $1,000. We have an artwork sheet that describes the artwork process, what the charges are, and how the customer will receive the artwork.
It never fails, if a customer does not pay for artwork two things will happen. First, you will see your artwork on a vehicle wrap that you did not do. And second, that customer will have you do 20 revisions that will take over a month to approve. We tell our customers that our design process is just like a cab ride – we will take you as far as you want to go, but the meter will be on!
Every shop that produces vehicle wraps has its own material that it feels comfortable with. We print on only one material, which is cast vinyl with a cast overlaminate. Be sure you are charging for the material, lamination and ink.
Pricing varies across the country, but keep in mind the complexity of the design, print and time it takes to produce. We print all of our wraps in high quality mode which takes longer to RIP and print. We get beat out of jobs all the time with a cheaper price. It’s going to happen! We always tell our potential customers to compare apples to apples. We let our clients know that we print only on cast media, with a cast laminate, printed in high quality.
We also offer a free test print. Some companies say they print in high quality; make your competition prove they’re better. This also helps in the approval process. We have seen pricing for vehicle wraps go from $5 per square foot to $14 per square foot. It really depends on your location. We wish everyone charged $14 a square foot.
When we first started out we could only charge a small amount for installation due to our skill level. Work your way up to a price that you think you are worth. When pricing an installation, always figure in your detailing and preparation time before the installation begins. It is hard to calculate time of a vehicle wrap without completing that particular vehicle. There is a big difference between wrapping a 25-foot box truck than doing a VW Bug. Be sure to charge more for bumpers, side-view mirrors, roofs and other difficult areas to wrap. We have seen installations go anywhere from $1 to $6 dollars per square foot for installation. There are also different types of installations. Good and bad, we have seen them all. Try to sell your customer the quality you will provide. We always show our customers photographs of good and bad wraps so they can see the difference.
If you don’t want to confuse or bore your clients, give them one flat fee (include material and installation) for a full or partial wrap. Then add in the artwork to get the job going. Remember, if your client is not prepared to pay a deposit for artwork, they are not prepared to get a wrap. It will save everyone time.
When it comes to pricing, not only are you charging your customers for a vehicle wrap, you’re selling them a high-impact mobile billboard that will give everyone an imprint of what they do. Pinpoint a price area that your customer is comfortable with and work from there. Keep your pencil sharp and happy pricing!