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Pricing your Funeral Programs

A question you may have already begun to ask is, “How much do I charge for designing and printing funeral programs?”  That’s a great question to ask, because it’s one you’ll have to answer before you begin to market this new service. There are so many different factors that come into play when deciding how to price your finished programs that it might help to break it down into two different approaches to pricing.

Before we dive into those, let’s first look at the factors that affect pricing either way.

Factor #1: Your Geographic Location: If you’re planning to market your services in your local area, rather than relying solely on remote orders from the internet, you’ll need to do some research.

  • Who is already providing this service in your area?
  • How much are they charging?
  • Will your product be unique for your area, for example, are most locally printed funeral programs done in black and white, while you have the ability to offer full color, customizable funeral mementos?
  • The best ways to gather this market data are to call around to other providers, check their websites and ask family and friends who have ordered funeral programs in the past.

Factor #2: What Are the Variables for Each Order? This simply means ‘what will go into designing, printing and delivering each order?’

  • How many pages will the funeral program be? Single sheet, bi-fold or multi-page booklet? Single fold, graduated fold, or stapled?
  • What size, color and weight of paper would the customer like to use?
  • Will the program be black and white, one color or full-color?
  • How will you receive the funeral details, obituary, photos and other input from the customer? Will it be in digital format or will it require scanning or typing into the program template?
  • How many photos will be included? Will there be a single cover photo or collections of photos to be gathered into collages?
  • What special graphics such as dividers, frames and borders would the customer like added to the funeral program template they select?
  • Will you be shipping the programs or will someone be picking them up locally?

What Other Business Costs Should You Consider?

  • How much does it cost in ink, toner and other supplies to print your funeral programs?
  • Will you be offering introductory discounts as you’re building your business?
  • Will you need to pay someone to help you print, assemble and ship orders (this is especially important to remember if you’re working full-time at another job while building your business)?Without considering each of these variables I’ve mentioned, you may find yourself underbidding jobs and losing money. You’re in this to build a nice income, so take the time to think through these factors as your build your pricing model.
  • Which Pricing Model Works Best?
  • There are a couple of different ways you can approach pricing, so let’s look at what goes into each. By the way, when you quote pricing to your customers, be prepared with a couple of examples so they know what to expect.

Pricing by Feature

In this pricing model, you explain to the customer that your funeral programs have a base price, for example, one hundred one-page programs in one color, including one photo, on standard size paper might be one-hundred dollars. They can then add features, depending on how much they want to spend. Have a list of features with pricing to show them. An example of add-on features might be additional photos, maybe five additional photos per program for an additional $25 per order.

They could also order one extra page per program for a set price per order, or add additional clipart beyond what’s in the template they chose, or order photo collages, additional ink colors or a special size or weight of paper. One more factor you should always include a price list per feature is the additional cost for you to scan photos, if they aren’t available in digital format. Again, with this pricing model, it’s important to clearly spell out on a price list exactly what the customer will be charged for each additional feature, otherwise, you may find yourself working against someone’s unreasonable expectations or underpricing your own time and efforts.

Flat Rate Pricing Model

To simplify the order process, you might want to consider flat rate pricing instead. Add up the costs involved to create and print a single funeral program, making sure to consider all the options a customer might request. It’s important to consider those options so that you don’t charge too little for a labor-intensive project.

With flat rate pricing, there’s no need to create a list of features and pricing. Just remember to price your funeral or memorial programs at a high enough price per piece that you don’t lose money.

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