New Price Hike And Its Impact + Sales Tax?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by BrainExploder, Feb 6, 2019.

  1. BrainExploder
    BrainExploder Member
    Shoutout to Shapeways for giving us a heads up on the process but it is still a shock seeing the cost jump. I decided to keep my prices mostly the same to stay competitive with traditional manufacturing items I tend to go up against and this means my margins were cut by 20-30% on average overnight. The part I did not expect is the sudden addition of a tax to all purchases. Just a month ago I had purchased items to be shipped to CA an no tax, ordered an item yesterday again to CA and now there is a 9.5% tax, probably some NY law that passed but this compounded with the price hike is really bad timing and will have a massive impact on most shops and overall sales for developers and the host site.

    Another strange bug is when changing prices on an existing item it disappeared and is now awaiting staff approval to be listed publicly even though its been on sale for over 3 years.

    How are you guys dealing with the price changes and taxes?
  2. barkingdigger
    barkingdigger Well-Known Member
    I thought that sales tax thing was a Fed issue aimed at killing off the tax-free sale of mail-order and internet-order goods across state borders? I remember seeing something about it awhile back, and how platforms like SW would need to start collecting the tax for the receiving states. Seems each state wants its cut...
  3. adbinc
    adbinc Well-Known Member
    If an item has Fine Detail Plastic as one of the materials it is offered in, updating the other prices will throw it into review because your Fine Detail Plastic price is still grandfathered in. If your item has one of the words that is triggering IP review, editing the item will trigger that review, I think.
  4. MrNib
    MrNib Well-Known Member
    Ignoring taxation and shipping the production price increases have exceeded my original markup for 61.5% of all shop items. Guess I need to increase my markups by a factor of 2 to 4 if the goal is to keep prices from moving around until Shapeways stabilizes their cost structure.
  5. stonysmith
    stonysmith Well-Known Member Moderator
    Just to be clear. Your recorded markups should not have changed. The base price went up, so the total went up, but the MARKUP should not have changed.

    If you are seeing something different, email the model#'s to
    avim likes this.
  6. KkadwellMfg
    KkadwellMfg Member
    This has happened to me even when fixing typos in product descriptions... several times. The item typically returns to my shop in a day or so, but still...
  7. BrainExploder
    BrainExploder Member
    Yeah the prices adjusted accordingly to keep the markup the same but I have voluntarily lowered my prices on some items to stay competitive, better to sell some at lower prices than keep the margins and sell less or choke the product out of existence.
  8. avim
    avim Shapeways Employee Product Team
    Yes, some legal requirements have recently kicked in that require us to collect sales tax on a state by state basis. This is something that we have to comply with by law.
    I_UNLOCK_IT Member
    My prices per unit have literally doubled due to price hikes. Something I was paying $2.50 per unit for on a 20 unit sprue is now $5 bucks a pop. Do I pass that on to customers? Do I eat it?
    I spent a lot of time and money meeting shapeway standards, getting the price down to a minimum. setting up production runs to optimize effeciency. Shapeway has negated all that time and money to put me right back at a $5 per unit cost that I had gotten down to a profitable $2.50 per unit cost.
    Shutting everything down. Closing up shop. Looking back at injection molding with a complete redesign of my product. You would think prices would go down. But shapeway still has what amounts to a monopoly on SLS. Probably going to look to China for any future SLS products.
  10. MrNibbles
    MrNibbles Well-Known Member
    Shapeways must be pretty confident that the increased costs can be passed on to consumers. I don't think they expect the majority of products out there to have their markups reduced to "eat" the price increases. If they do lose sales they can simply cut costs by reducing staff, equipment, facilities, etc. to compensate. Maybe build some efficiencies in other areas. They certainly can't sell prints at a loss.

    On the other hand perhaps they aren't so confident which is why they are also trying to generate revenue with design services or printing for industrial customers in smaller batches where mold cost issues become a larger issue.
  11. Temjin
    Temjin Member
    Now with tax fee added, I really missed the old free shipping option.... for those of us don't mind waiting for long time.
  12. srnjm420
    srnjm420 Active Member
    With the price hike and the web redesign, my sales have been cut in half... Some of their changes may work for other shops but for people like me and my customers (miniatures N, HO & S Scale) it is killing us. Our market is very different and the "NEW WAY" here is not friendly to it... Real shame... Was fun while it lasted. We shall see how long I am able to keep my shop open. I know I will not be doing as many new designs as I had planned now...

  13. dauntless
    dauntless Member
    Agreed. As another Model Railroader - since the new website update, sales have literally dropped more then 50%. The website is just such a pain to use. It reminds me of a cell phone App. I have done very little new work since then as well. I doubt I will even bother adding anything new to my shop.
  14. tinyrightbrain
    tinyrightbrain Well-Known Member
    Hi -
    Regarding sales tax, if you are buying items for resale, you can contact support with your resale certificate from your state and they will have finance change your account to tax-exempt. Otherwise, it doesn't make sense if sales tax is paid once here and then again when you sell your item within your state.
    EvieL likes this.
  15. Has anyone found an alternative to Shapeways? The new prices will put me out of business.
  16. Andy1987
    Andy1987 Member
    No. I have been looking. Sadly nothing...
  17. Greaseball
    Greaseball Active Member
    It's the sub-minimum cost parts that are going to biggest hassle. Shapeways attitude seems to be a lot of those products won't be worth the trouble anymore and they wouldn't mind them being ported to a competitive service if feasible. It's especially true for dyed versatile plastics. However as with most things there are Workarounds although it can add a lot of complexity to product and store set-up.

    The design of sprued or looped together parts can affect production quality or increase production failures. Depending on shapes of individual parts machine volume can quickly get out of hand and negate any $$$ benefits of sprueing/looping. Different orientations of the identical parts can result in different layering or cupping effects so the same parts won't look identical. How tightly those parts are co-located could mean abrasive treatments won't reach everywhere resulting in different finishes or dye results. It seems the best way to combat the issue is to upload various physical arrangements of multiple parts that seem to make sense, see which one is cheapest, and then set that version for sale.

    In addition a multi-piece model can be cheaper in plain white versatile but the looped/sprued version can be cheaper in dyed versatile options. Now you have the additional problem of trying to figure out how to arrange those products in your store while also thinking ahead to when future price changes might affect the balance of what's cheaper down the line. You could put both individual and looped versions into one product by pointing each material to the cheapest model version. But if the pricing ever changes that means more headache is possible in the future trying to repair the impact. The other option is to put both models in the store using all materials and let the customer know in the descriptions that it would benefit them to check multiple products to find the cheapest offering in the material they want to buy.

    Take for example the following products. One version has separate parts but the other has the two parts sprued together. The separate part version is cheaper for non-dyed versatile plastic options but the sprued together version is cheaper for dyed versatile plastic options. In this case the customer would need to decide for themselves what is best for them. However it makes the store messier by having multiple versions of what's basically the same product.
  18. Greaseball
    Greaseball Active Member
    Here's one of those products that was probably too expensive in the old pricing system and got worse with the repricing. To compound the problem it was hit by another increase due to the $5 minimum cost for regular white nylon versatile plastic. Two parts connected together brings minimum price above the $5 threshold but then the question becomes what's the best (cheapest) way of doing so. I uploaded a few variations and here are the results. They key takeaway is that machine volume (space) is still an important factor to reduce as it was previously. You may be able to do something similar to achieve a lower per unit production price. This type of thing probably doesn't apply as well to other materials such as frosted detail materials.

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