do you arrive at your prices, Gillian?
is only rarely that I have customers question the cost of my crackers
- most folks realize they take a lot of time and money to make and
I try to use only quality fillers. AND I do pay North American wages
to the Elf Staff - not overseas cheapie rates like nearly every
other cracker company on the planet! But this week one customer
enquired about this and a corporate customer last week wondered
why I couldn't produce them for 60 cents each! Oh, my goodness!
So I have decided to share with you my costing formula by illustrating
how much the crackers might cost YOU were you to make them at home!
THIS - MAKE 10 CRACKERS:
1) Find, purchase all of your materials (time, materials)
2) Create your activity page - designing the puzzles, trivia. (time)
3) Print the pages out (time, materials - coloured printing = $$$)
4) Cut tissue to make hats, cut & glue. (time, materials)
5) Find holiday jokes. Print & cut each one. (time, materials)
6) Fold activity pages (time)
7) Pack activ. pages, hats, jokes, pencils in cello. (time, materials)
8) Cut tissue to wrap rolls (time, materials)
9) Wrap and tape tissue (time, materials)
10) Cut ribbon to tie ends. (time, materials)
11) Tie one end (time)
12) Pack puzzle packs, chocolate, decorations & goodies into
crackers (time, materials)
13) Tie remaining end.
- What were your total costs for the supplies?
- How long did it take you it total to make those TEN crackers?
- How much do you feel your time is worth per hour? Take that hourly
wage and divide it by however many crackers you can create in ONE
hour (including ALL the tasks involved above). Add the cost of your
cracker wages to your per-cracker costs.
big chunk of time needs to be paid for to cover the time taken up
with shipping. It takes time to carefully pack the crackers with
tissue, add other little goodies and a card, seal it all up and
then do the on-line shipping, printing & attaching the postage
labels. And more time for filling in customs forms for boxes going
to the USA. The boxes are puchased to fit the crackers ensuring
they arrive at your door in the best shape possible - another necessary
cost. The result is both a shipping AND a handling fee
a business, I have further expenses. There is a very considerable
amount of time spent emailing and chatting with customers, answering
questions, checking on deliveries, talking to suppliers, doing paper
work, bookkeeping, taxes, employee paydays, website design and updates,
social media updates, historical research for new cracker varieties
along with supply sources and cleaning the workshop. Then there
are costs such as rent, shelving, cabinets, office supplies, telephone,
heat, hydro, multiple printers, computers, software, adding machines,
weigh scales, tools, scissors, print and web advertising, web hosting,
lightbulbs - you name it! I'm sure I've forgotten a slew of
I also try (but don't always achieve) a tiny profit margin for re-investing
into the business and as a payday reward for being a very hard-working
Chief Cracker Elf!
now ya know! There is a LOT packed into that $7 or so price