Digital photography retail profit ?

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by dxqcanada, Feb 21, 2009.

  1. dxqcanada

    dxqcanada Been spending a lot of time on here!

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2008
    Messages:
    5,504
    Likes Received:
    700
    Location:
    Woodbridge, Ontario, Canada
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    I worked in the photographic retail industry many years ago.
    We worked on the idea that if we can sell a camera to a customer that they will come back continously to purchase film and get photofinishing.

    Our profit margins on the camera hardware was extremely minimal and we made our money on the film and photofinishing.

    I was thinking about the Digital photo industry ... and there is no film (yes there are storage cards but these are not one time use) or people have their own printing methods.

    I am assuming profit margins are the Camera hardware have been set a lot higher now to compensate ?
     
  2. ThePhotoRebellion

    ThePhotoRebellion TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2009
    Messages:
    40
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    U.S.
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    From talking with the employees at my local pro camera shop, a lot of these companies are still making nice profits in photo refinishing. The company I'm talking about has 6-8 locations and a strong web presence.

    I'm not sure of the profit margins on digital equipment but photographers, Pro and hobbyists, upgrade a lot sooner now than they did 10 years ago.
     
  3. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2003
    Messages:
    33,818
    Likes Received:
    1,811
    Location:
    Edmonton
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    A lot of the consumer labs seem to be doing poorly these days. People used to buy film and then pay for processing and prints...which was pretty lucrative. Now, it seems that very few people print their image. It's more likely that they go onto the computer and get shared on Facebook or Myspace etc. Heck, I know several people who have digital cameras and no computer at all...they just look at the images on the camera's screen.

    I know that some companies have been trying hard to get people to print their images and use their disposable products. This is one reason they have small photo printers and several that can print directly from the camera. It seems to be a loosing battle though.

    I think the big money maker is small digital cameras. It seems to me that people used to buy a 35mm film point & shoot camera and had it for 10+ years...never needing or wanting to upgrade. It might have cost them $100 give or take.

    Now, those same people buy a $300 digital camera every two years...and their kids each have their own digital cameras as well. That's where the money is. The small chain store labs try to sell this stuff but they have a hard time competing with big box stores.
     
  4. ann

    ann No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    May 14, 2007
    Messages:
    4,263
    Likes Received:
    189
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    the mark up on hardware is not as much as one would think. At least that is what i have been told by people i trust. I get a professional discount and when it comes to hardware, it is very slim, if any.

    The extra's are the "money" makers.
     
  5. Flash Harry

    Flash Harry TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2006
    Messages:
    1,918
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Durham, UK
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    I for one will take a lot of convincing that the profit margins are slim, 5 years back an F5 Nikon went for around £1300 over here, this was the dogs b******* film camera, the D300 I bought recently cost roughly the same and the D3 is nearly £3000, D3X £5000, possibly retailers aren't making a fortune but I dont see the majors suffering at these costs, camera internals are pretty much the same, add a sensor and mini computer, quadruple the price and you have a winner. I can buy a decent second hand car for the price of a camera now. H
     
  6. ann

    ann No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    May 14, 2007
    Messages:
    4,263
    Likes Received:
    189
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    there is a difference between what the manufactor makes and what the store makes.
     
  7. ThePhotoRebellion

    ThePhotoRebellion TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2009
    Messages:
    40
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    U.S.
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    I would like to know the truth about the "profit margin" for electronics.
    I agree, it's the same with many electronics. For example, Game systems (Ps3, x box, etc.) and even the games themselves, prices haven't changed in 15 years. Tell me, how is that possible?

    Who sets the prices for these products?
     
  8. dxqcanada

    dxqcanada Been spending a lot of time on here!

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2008
    Messages:
    5,504
    Likes Received:
    700
    Location:
    Woodbridge, Ontario, Canada
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    When I was in retail ... the price was set dependent on the following things:

    What your competition is selling the same item for.
    What you can get away with.
    If the manufacturer has negotiated a set price with all retailers.

    Generally a manufacturer tries to balance the pricing through all the local retailers ... to stop any dumping / price wars that may occur.
     
  9. Christie Photo

    Christie Photo No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Messages:
    7,006
    Likes Received:
    67
    Location:
    Kankakee, IL
    How many stand-alone camera shops do you see any more? We had two very nice store in our town (population 35,000). They're both long gone. When department and discount stores began offering a larger and larger selection of photo gear, things got rough. I know at one time the margin was simply the discount they got from paying the invoice early... about 1 1/2%.

    Usually these shops sold other stuff... greeting cards and such.

    And now, there's the internet.

    Anyway, they're mostly gone now. There can't be much $ without real volume buying and selling.

    -Pete
     
  10. andrew99

    andrew99 TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2008
    Messages:
    672
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    Just a guess, but I imagine camera stores make most of their money from accessories. Camera bags, memory, lenses, flashes, etc.
     
  11. JCleveland

    JCleveland TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2007
    Messages:
    188
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Saskatoon, Sk
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    I'm a store manager at Black's here in Canada, and the margins on digital cameras as well as camera equipment is very MINIMAL, we definitely make our money on the 'extras' as someone had mentioned.. That bag, filter, lens pens, memory, warranties etc.. PLUS the referrals and repeat customers we generate because we have fantastic customer service and 'perks' so to say, is definitely key.. Black's is also very reliant on our printing, passports, frames and so forth. It seems more people are coming out of their shells about printing their digital files, realizing how simple it is, and how inexpensive it is to do in a lab, as opposed to printing at home! (And how much better a 'pro' lab is compared to wally-world!)
     
  12. dxqcanada

    dxqcanada Been spending a lot of time on here!

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2008
    Messages:
    5,504
    Likes Received:
    700
    Location:
    Woodbridge, Ontario, Canada
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Ok, sounds like things have not changed since I was in the business ... except for the volumes of film we sold. There would be no equal consumable item in Digital Photography.

    I can see why Camera Stores are closing up.
     

Share This Page

Search tags for this page
best photgraphy retail for business
,
camera margins retail
,
is photography a retail business
,
photography profit margin
,
photography profit margins
,
photography retail business
,

retail digital photo prices

,
retail photographic industry
,
what is a good retail margin for a photographer
,
what is the profit margin on digital cameras