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Talking Head
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
How do you guys get pricing for products from your suppliers? I have a great yard near me but they always provide pricing one item at a time and it's killing me when I've got a sales list for decks that is probably pushing 100 sku's that change price EVERY year. The railings are the real killer.

I'm going to just fire over a spreadsheet and let them fill it out but I was curious if some of your suppliers had a better way, like premade price lists.
 

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I have one supplier that does a sheet for decks. They package framing for SF, undercarriage /stairs 3 different composites SF & 2 different railings packaged / FT. & fasteners

It's okay for ball park pricing but I never trust it. You can have x amount of railing ft but uses moreo posts than assumed and the number changes. Also board lengths.

I just give them a sheet.
 

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Some prices change more than once a year, sometimes monthly. Due to past experience I always call if price that I already have is over 1 month old from a lumber yard. Much of the stuff I get is special order anyway so they have to call their supplier also.
 

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Custom cabinetry
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I send over an excel sheet that is my price database, my price spreadsheet pulls the price from the database and adds it all up. Very powerful, very simple and they don't get anyone else's pricing, labor pricing, markup, or any other info.
 

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Talking Head
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks guys. It's just a little odd to me that they have to put that much effort into developing price lists. My main yard has done a pretty good job of putting their big sellers up on their website and the pricing is adjusted for each user after login. My head starts to hurt when I'm looking at putting together some lighting packages and I need to get 100 different parts priced to help me pick a product and make it easy to sell.

I'm about to get the options for Fortress rails and I'm not looking forward to that.
 

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How do you guys get pricing for products from your suppliers? I have a great yard near me but they always provide pricing one item at a time and it's killing me when I've got a sales list for decks that is probably pushing 100 sku's that change price EVERY year. The railings are the real killer.

I'm going to just fire over a spreadsheet and let them fill it out but I was curious if some of your suppliers had a better way, like premade price lists.
I send specs they send back a quote. Easy.
 

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Talking Head
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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
I send specs they send back a quote. Easy.
It's a royal PITA compared to when I had a retail store. At least then I could go let the customer go through the catalog and we could mix and match and pull up a price right then and there. I'd apply a discount after that if I sold below "retail" price but going through the catalog, picking everything and then saying "okay, I'll get back to you with a price." doesn't cut it in my mind.

I know I shouldn't have a million sku's so I can streamline a deck sale but, using the Fortress railing example, they have a LOT of parts that can be used with their standard rail. Why shouldn't I be able to lay it out and close the deal in one go?

I'm working on streamlining my sales process, so that's why I'm looking for ways to have what I need when I walk through the door without unnecessarily limiting the HO's choices. I've narrowed down the brands but I feel a little silly not being able to sell what's in the books I bring, on the spot. Like I said, it's probably my retail background that's making this frustrating.
 

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It's a royal PITA compared to when I had a retail store. At least then I could go let the customer go through the catalog and we could mix and match and pull up a price right then and there. I'd apply a discount after that if I sold below "retail" price but going through the catalog, picking everything and then saying "okay, I'll get back to you with a price." doesn't cut it in my mind.

I know I shouldn't have a million sku's so I can streamline a deck sale but, using the Fortress railing example, they have a LOT of parts that can be used with their standard rail. Why shouldn't I be able to lay it out and close the deal in one go?

I'm working on streamlining my sales process, so that's why I'm looking for ways to have what I need when I walk through the door without unnecessarily limiting the HO's choices. I've narrowed down the brands but I feel a little silly not being able to sell what's in the books I bring, on the spot. Like I said, it's probably my retail background that's making this frustrating.
You can do that with my suppliers but it's a waste of time having them look everything up. Some of them have an online price list which is really handy.
 

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Talking Head
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
You can do that with my suppliers but it's a waste of time having them look everything up. Some of them have an online price list which is really handy.
That's what I'm saying. In the furniture industry, every manufacturer distributes a "retail" price list with the catalog. Now, we know that no one is charging a high enough markup to actually use the "retail" price but it was easy enough to price a few products and figure out that what your actual percentage below "retail" pricing was and then the manufacturer didn't have to worry about handing out the wrong price list to the wrong company. For example, you could check a couple things and find that you could just knock 60% off all prices and that would be about what you would pay at cost and then, when working with customers, knock 20% off the "retail" price to get your sales price.

It is a remarkable simple system. It had to be in an industry where every piece could have three or more custom components and the customer was sitting right next to you while you were figuring out their price. Anyway, it sounds like I'm going to have to limit my offerings and be ready to add a step to the sale.
 

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You need to simplify by building components that pull from your price database. For example : when I select a 12' joist it grabs 12' of steel, 2 l70s, and 16 screws. If I select a fortress panel it grabs the panel and the brackets. If I select a built up double beam (I enter lf) it grabs 2 lf joist, 2 lf track, and 8 screws. I can update the price database whenever I want and it auto updates the pricing spreadsheet.
 

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Talking Head
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
You need to simplify by building components that pull from your price database. For example : when I select a 12' joist it grabs 12' of steel, 2 l70s, and 16 screws. If I select a fortress panel it grabs the panel and the brackets. If I select a built up double beam (I enter lf) it grabs 2 lf joist, 2 lf track, and 8 screws. I can update the price database whenever I want and it auto updates the pricing spreadsheet.
That's the way I do it. I've got a pretty solid set of spreadsheets that all my remodeling projects. I can crank out a basic deck estimate using any one of nine kinds of decking, two kinds of fastening and three basic railing kits in 5-10 minutes.

This thread has made me realize that it's really only the railing and lighting components that are being a PITA. I'll just have to prune the catalogs to weed out the extraneous product. I always get like this after a show.
 

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That's the way I do it. I've got a pretty solid set of spreadsheets that all my remodeling projects. I can crank out a basic deck estimate using any one of nine kinds of decking, two kinds of fastening and three basic railing kits in 5-10 minutes.

This thread has made me realize that it's really only the railing and lighting components that are being a PITA. I'll just have to prune the catalogs to weed out the extraneous product. I always get like this after a show.
Simplify the selections. Fortress offers those add on top rails (3 or 4 kinds?) Just pick the most expensive and just have 1 line for "add on top rail". Lighting level 1, 2, 3. Lvl1 is fixtures up to $25, lvl 2 is $26-40, lvl 3 is $40-60.
 

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Ethan, I get a commitment from my yard every year. I got sick of them lowering the price to get me to come back and then slowly raising it over time. So each year they make me a spread sheet that is specific to my company. They put prices on there all the way to the post caps and extra hardware kits. I don't let them leave anything out. It's nice to check the list and get my actual costs during the bid process.
 

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You guys are definitely good on paperwork... I am now realizing I might be the only jerkoff who sets a price and leaves it there for a year. Its not low but my markup on material varies because I might buy a bunch of something when I get an opportunity to buy it low and then might get burned a little later on.

I'll be the first to admit I'm a crappy business man but I gave up on trying to follow the lead of the supply companies. Its impressive how you guys are able to keep with some of these companies. Mike sounds like he's got a good deal, I just get super frustrated with having to update stuff ALL the time.
 

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Ethan, I get a commitment from my yard every year. I got sick of them lowering the price to get me to come back and then slowly raising it over time. So each year they make me a spread sheet that is specific to my company. They put prices on there all the way to the post caps and extra hardware kits. I don't let them leave anything out. It's nice to check the list and get my actual costs during the bid process.
same here. i get them locked for 6/months at a time. I too use excel for the entire list of inventory down to the screw. like the GOD's above. They everything is in quick book so I just click and it's all written up and spit out. Then they're that the special custom build and you start all over again.
 

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Ok guys, I have no idea how to do this with Excel and would really appreciate some pointers how to set it up and would even be agreeable to paying someone for their template.

PM if you're interested in sharing your template with me.

Thanks,
Brian
 
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