In some of the larger sizes the present price of dry plates is less than the cost of the uncoated glass. Silver is up over 50%. Bromide of Potassium is selling at from ten to fourteen times its former price. Gelatine is up and so is everything else that comes into the making, packing and shipping.
So long as our old stocks held out we kept prices down. Our customers have had the full benefit. Prices have been only slightly advanced (by a reduction in discount) on the general run of plates, but in self protection we are now obliged to advance the list prices on plates in the large sizes. All glass is up tremendously - especially the large sizes. Fortunately, the consumption of plates in these sizes is relatively small and so the new list prices are not as important as they seem to be - except to the few photographers who are making big negatives. We would like to hold these prices down but it is obvious that we can not buy glass, coat it, pack it and ship it, and sell it for less than the raw glass costs.
On all of our products we are giving our customers the full advantage of early purchases. As our big stocks become depleted and we have to pay war prices,we must of necessity make an advance in our prices.
The new list on large plates follows:
S. E. R., Polychrome and Process
12 x 20 . ...... $20.00
16 x 20....... 23.00
17 x 20....... 25.00
18 x 22 ...... . 32.00
20 x 24....... 40.00
For your less expensive work, where price is the big consideration, you have two good papers in the grades of Azo described below:
AZO AA - Coated on a double weight white stock, of a fine grained matte surface. Gives prints of pleasing warmth in black and white, as well as true, rich sepia tones in the Hypo-Alum bath.
AZO H - Coated on a double weight buff stock, of slightly rough matte surface.
Both of these grades are made in one contrast, to fit the portrait negative of average strength and quality.
Artura produces quality for quality.
SEED PLATE NEGATIVE, ARTURA PRINT
By H. C. Watton Oklahoma City, Okla.
SHOULD YOU RAISE YOUR PRICES?
I had a conversation with a friend the other day regarding the general increase in the price of articles which have been affected, one way or another, by the war.He contended that he should increase his prices on photographs because of the very high cost of chemicals and I agreed with him, but he couldn't determine just how to go about it or how much of an advance in prices to make."How do you suppose the dealer or manufacturer determines the price at which he must sell a certain article?" I asked. "There is keen competition - there is no such thing as price agreements between manufacturers or dealers - prices of such goods are fairly uniform and the manufacturer and dealer certainly make a profit."
"Well, I suppose they do, but a dealer pays a dollar for an article and knows just what he must sell it for to make a profit. We have so many things that enter into the cost of a dozen photographs that it isn't so easy."
I suggested that we eliminate photographs from the discussion for a moment and take an easy example. "You buy a hand carved photograph frame for $3.00 and sell it for $4.00 - how much profit do you make?"
"I make a dollar, of course."Now, there is just where you are wrong and where a great many others make a mistake. You may feel perfectly well satisfied to sell that frame at a dollar more than you paid for it, but if your cost of doing business is 25% you are not making a penny of profit."
"It costs money to carry a stock of frames because you have your money invested in them - because you must take care of them, stand the loss on some that become shop-worn and because it takes time and effort to show them, make a sale, deliver the goods and, possibly, to collect the account.
"If it costs you 25% of your gross sales to conduct your business and you want to make a net profit of 15% on your sales, you must add these two items, making 40%, and deduct this from your selling price, 100%, leaving 60% to represent the cost of the article which in the case of the carved frame is $3.00. If $3.00 is 60% of the selling price, 1% is one-sixtieth of $3.00, or $.05 and 100% is 100 times $.05 or $5.00. So you must sell your $3.00 frame for $5.00 to make a net profit of 15% on the sale."
"By the same figures you can see that it costs you (25%) $1.25 to sell the frame and your net profit (15%) is 75 cents."
"You can figure exactly the same way on your photographs once you have your cost of doing business, for it is a simple matter to determine the cost of material for any given style of picture, allowing for any advance in cost of materials and for waste but not for labor, for that is included in the overhead expense."
"To get an idea of your overhead expense, determine your sales for a given period and all your expenses for the same period, exclusive of the material that goes into the making of a dozen portraits."
"We will say your sales are $670.00 for one month and your expenses are $201.00. Then $201.00 ÷ $670.00 = .30, showing your average overhead expense is 30% or 30 cents on every $1.00. This is the correct way of figuring overhead expense in general merchandising, but to make your business profitable you must hold to a fairly even scale of prices or figure a larger profit on some line of cheap work you may decide to make, after you have found your percentage of overhead cost."