Someone on Reddit wondered why it should cost £4 for a card when it is ‘a bit of paper with Happy Birthday on it’.
£4 is a lot, I agree, and walking along a row of cards in a shop you can see anything from £2.50 to more than £4 with no rhyme or reason as to why one is more than the other – but then there is a lot to cards. I can break it down.
The cost to a creator depends on size of the card, the card stock (weight of card, colour, and there are a lot of different kinds of card), the numbers printed, whether there is any metal foiling or die stamping on the card – and there is a worldwide paper shortage at the moment and paper prices are way up – let’s say 23p per card ex VAT for a card printed and creased for the fold, and left flat. Digital printing is as high quality as litho printing, so it is cost-effective to do short runs. But transport costs are high – and the printer charges for sending the cards to the creator. That could be £15. Next is the envelope and the cellophane wrapper or card clasp – let’s say another 6p. And they have to be shipped as well.
Let’s say the printer sends the card flat and creased – then the creator has got to sit and put all the cards tother with their envelopes and cellophanes or card clasps so they are ready to go out. If the creator is selling direct to consumers via a website or on market stalls, then they have those overheads.
With a website, it may be Shopify or Squarespace, or WooCoommerce – they probably all come out at about £20/month to run. if the creator ia selling to shops then they are gong to be able to charge shops something around £1 – and then the shop has its overheads and its markup.