View Full Version : How much should I charge to build a system?
08-08-2001, 11:50 AM
I can build great systems for a reasonable price well below many big companys, but I'm stuck on how much I should charge on top of parts. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks in Advance!
08-08-2001, 12:29 PM
That all depends on how much value you put on your time. There is no easy answer. If you tack on too much value, then of course you will price yourself right out of the market.
Based on past experience, I think it's best to not put too great a value on your own time. Otherwise, as mentioned above, you will have product that you can't sell.
Knowing nothing of your present situation, that is, your market and/or number of potential customers, I would suggest that you tack on just enough to still be under your major competitors, whether they are big time companies, or the guy down the street. When you do this, you may find that in order to be competitive, the value on your own time may be very low. In other words, it may only amount to 10-20% above your parts prices, or maybe more or maybe less. It usually takes many many hours of a person's time to get a business off the ground, usually without much reward at first.
However, there is no better way to start out. Be careful to maintain a competitive edge and don't price yourself out of the market. Provide good service and product at reasonable prices and your client base will grow. Once you have a loyal customer base, then you can gradually start to increase the value on your time.
Hang tight for some opinions from several people here who do what you do, such as MJC, Randy_TX, Ranchdog, Pete, etc.
Wishing you the best of luck.
Big Blue 66
Woe is me.
Ok, that was just about exactly what I was going to say....
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08-08-2001, 03:17 PM
I would suggest a different approach. First take a long hard look at the competition both the big businesses and small. As a small company you'll need to find a niche. There's some good books available on guerrilla marketing. Remember that a lot of "prices" are generally lower than what the consumer often winds up paying. To take the big guys on as a price competitor will be tough. They have volume purchases at a discount that you won't be able to get. It would be better to find the mid price and then go above that. The reasons for this is most new small business undercharge when they start out and it's always much easier to lower your price than to raise it. Find the weakness in the competetion and then strive to make that your strength.
08-08-2001, 04:55 PM
I try to charge the same as the big boys; however, I stress to the customer the Huge difference buying from me vs. the big boys:
1. I can do warranty work [should it ever be necessary] the same day or within 24 hrs.
2. You get the same "Randy" every time you call for customer support.
3. I use the same or better quality components as the big boys and warrant them for 3 years at no additional cost.
4. I custom build the computer to the exact specs the customer wants.
5. I dont put any "Garbage" software on the system that they may or may not want or are able to remove.
Will XP save Me ?
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