Are you making this common album pricing mistake?

Author Recent Posts Nicole BegleyNicole Begley, M.Photog.Cr., CPP, is a zoological animal trainer turned pet photographer and educator. She created Hair of the Dog in 2012 to empower pet photographers to turn their dreams into reality by helping them improve their craft and grow their pet photography business.Nicole has authored a book “Pet and Equine […]

Written By Nicole Begley

On May 8, 2015
I see it daily. The price list that has albums with 30 images in them for $400 or less. Albums are very much like prints in the crazy world of photography product pricing. Photographers figure that if the album costs them $100, selling it for $400 is a 25% Cost of Goods Sold…so they must be priced profitably.  This is very similar to the photographer that prices their 8×10 at $12 because it is 4X the $3 cost of the print.

Unfortunately, both photographers are absolutely 100% wrong in their pricing…that is if they want to have a successful and profitable business.

The secret ingredient missing from these calculations is time. A print does not really cost $3. My print costs me $27. You can see the calculation for that at this previous post about pricing your prints.

Albums offer a similar conundrum. There is the time for you to handle and edit EACH FILE in the book, there is the time for you to design the book, and there is the time for you to share and edit the book with your client, etc. You MUST include your time in order for you to have profitable album sales.

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That often means that albums are priced at 8-10x their hard costs – here are a few tips.

I love to offer my clients albums in different price ranges as some clients love to splurge for the high-end album, while others prefer to keep their albums simple and small.   Find 2-3 different albums that you love, at different price points, and offer those.

Another way to keep your costs down is to limit the number of images in the album. I start with 20 images in my album and clients can upgrade to include 10 additional pages and 15 additional images. Even if you don’t upgrade to additional pages you can still create an up-charge for your clients to include additional images. It takes you additional time to process and design those files so it’s ok to charge more for it!

The final check and balance in your album pricing is comparing the album price to the cost of your prints. If your album includes 40 images and has a retail price of 400 for your client, then each image in your album is costing your client $10.

$10!

I’m not saying that your albums should be priced the same as purchasing stand-alone prints, but there should be a correlation.  If you want some help with determining your pricing for YOUR business – grab our free pricing masterclass below.

 

Looking for some more pricing training?  Forget what every other pet photographer is charging -- the best thing you can do for your business is set your prices based on YOUR business and YOUR goals. It’s time to stop following the pack and let your rates lead you to a sustainable business!

Here’s what you’ll learn:

  • The #1 thing you need to know BEFORE setting your prices
  • My simple formula to set up your pricing structure for success 
  • How to increase your prices without losing customers

Oh, and did I mention this is a free training?  Grab it below.

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3 Comments

  1. Michelle

    Hi Nicole,
    The “Sprouting Photographer” link goes to a “page not found error”. thought I would let you know ;0)

    Reply
  2. Patrick Malone

    Hi Nicole, I am just starting out in pet photography and you are providing lots of great information.
    You suggest that we should charge 4x our cost. There is a very good photo lab I hope to use. They charge $90 for a 16×20 canvas gallery wrap. Do you recommend that I charge the client $360?
    Thanks.

    Reply

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