New 2021 Sign Study Proves Popular

NPRC has officially released its 2021-22 Signs & Wide Format Pricing Study.

Packed with more than 1,600 average and median prices, the new study features the latest pricing for banners, feather flags, foam core, coroplast and magnetic signs just to name a few.

Other products featured include decals (square and contour cut), window perfs, vehicle wraps and vinyl signs.

Click here to download and view the Study’s Table of Contents. 

RETAIL PRICE* (PDF): $186.00
RETAIL PRICE* (Hard Copy): $198.00

Visit the NPRC Bookstore to place your order.

Remember, As always, these reports are sold with a 100% money-back guarantee if you are not totally satisfied with the information it provides.

Most orders are processed in two hours or less. Orders placed on Fridays, however, may be delayed until the following Monday. (After ordering, be sure to check your trash and spam folders, since that’s where some of our publications land if [email protected] is not  “whitelisted.”)


NPRC Releases 2021-22 Sign Study

Yes, it’s now available! The NPRC 2021-2022 Signs & Wide Format Pricing Study is now ready for purchase.

Survey participants, entitled to a complimentary copy of the study, received personalized emails on Sept. 9, 10 and 13th. The emails incorporated “URGENT” in the subject line and provided detailed instructions for downloading.

SPECIAL NOTICE: Please carefully check your email client and confirm that is whitelisted. Doing so will insure that you will be among the first to receive announcements from NPRC regarding this study’s content and availability.

This new study provides average, median and per piece pricing for dozens of products and services provided in the signs and wide format industry. Included in this study is pricing data for banners (horizontal and vertical), feather flags, foam core and coroplast signs, aluminum signs, contour cut decals, vehicle decals, flat surface vehicle wraps and vinyl signs, just to name a few.

The 2021-22 Signs & Wide Format Pricing Study also explores general industry pricing across a broad spectrum of firms, plus it also details pricing by firms based upon their overall sign sales. View the Table of Contents here.

The 110-page study (PDF Version) will retail for $186.00 for non-members and $93.00 for NPRC members. Orders are normally processed within two hours of receipt. Visit the NPRC Bookstore to place your order.

Download 3 Pricing Pages Absolutely FREE!

A limited time offer. This offer expires Aug. 31, 2021 and will not be repeated!

Visit the NPRC Bookstore and use Coupon Code NPRCVIP16 & Save 16% on the printing industry’s most popular digital pricing study!

By CLICKING HERE you can also download three sample pages from the 2021 Digital Color Pricing Study.

This “Must Have” pricing study features pricing for products and services such as carbonless forms, envelopes, self-cover newsletters, rack cards, postcards, 6 X 9″ and 8.5 X 11″ booklets and directories, as well as pricing for flyers, catalog sheets, click charges and stock mark-up practices, just to name a few!

View and download average and median pricing for 8-page newsletters with a finished size of 8.5 x 11″. Pricing is provide for quantities of 100, 500, 1,000 and 2,500. Per newsletter pricing is also provided to assist in pricing for other quantities as well.

Sign Survey Accommodates Firms of All Sizes!


  • “Heck, most of the firms that participate in these surveys are way bigger than my company and my prices won’t relate.”
  • “Hey, most of the participants are little firms that don’t really know how to price their products.”
  • “I sometimes doubt that companies that complete these surveys are really typical of the industry?”

If you’ve considered participating in an industry survey BUT found yourself expressing some of the same thoughts as noted above we ask you to reconsider. Our surveys truly represent a good cross-section of our industry. To prove our point we’ve listed below some basic early findings from some of our first survey participants. As a general rule, we tend to attract participants with annuals sales in the $400,000 range upwards to a few firms with sales in the $4-6 million.

The same is true for levels of productivity as measured by Sales Per Employee or SPE. Regardless of the survey, we tend to attract firms with very high levels of productivity as well as those at the opposite end of the spectrum.

• Average total 2020 sales…. $1,347,995
• Median total 2020 sales… $540,936

• Aver. # of Employees… 10.95
• Median # of Employees… 5.5

• Average SPE… $123,104
• Median SPE… $98,352

• Sign sales vs. total sales (Average)… 34%
• Sign sales vs. total sales (Median)… 20%

Average Pricing for Brokered Business Cards

Curious about what fellow printers charge for 4/0 and 4/4 brokered  business cards? You’ve come to the right place. Brokered Business Cards as well as regular business cards are just two of more than 90+ products and services featured in the 2021-2022 Digital Color Pricing Study published by the National Printing Research Council (NPRC)

CLICK HERE OR IMAGE ABOVE to download above page.

Other products included in this just released pricing study include carbonless forms, rack cards, postcards, flyers, catalog sheets as well as newsletters and stationery. Click here to download and view the complete table of contents from this popular study.

Retail Price (PDF)… $225
Retail Price (Hard Copy)… $245

Remember, all NPRC publications are sold on a 100% money-back guarantee basis if you are not totally satisfied that it is everything we promised!

* Most orders are processed almost immediately. HOWEVER, orders placed on Friday’s, or prior to holidays will likely be delayed and not processed or shipped until the following Monday. IMPORTANT: If you place an order with NPRC you should typically receive it within two hours or less. Be sure and check your spam and trash folders and make sure that our domain [email protected] is “whitelisted”

NPRC Releases Special 2021 Spring Report

Printers worn-out by Covid-19 and who have been expecting a quick economic recovery may have to wait until at least 2022, according to results of the the Spring 2021 Industry Survey published by the National Printing Research Council (NPRC).

Survey participants were initially provided an exclusive early glimpse at this report in return and in appreciation for for their efforts in participating in the survey.

NPRC’s newest report is 8-pages in length and is based upon a survey conducted between April 20-22. The survey attracted more than 175 participants and tackled key questions regarding the on-going impact that Covid-19 has had on sales and productivity since the pandemic first reared its head in early 2020.

Popular topics covered by the Spring survey included the impact Covid-19 has had on operating hours, the viability of competitors, average and median industry sales for 2019-2021 and past, current and future sales per employee (SPE). The survey also addresses steps printers are currently taking to recapture customers and increase sales.

Complete the information below to download your free copy of this just-released report.

    NPRC Releases Popular Digital Pricing Study

     The 2021 Digital Color Pricing Study, one of the printing industry’s most popular studies, has just been released by NPRC and is  available in the NPRC Bookstore.

    This new study features average, median and per unit pricing for products such as envelopes, 8, 16 and 32-page newsletters, envelopes and carbonless forms, rack cards and postcards, as well as dozens of other popular digital products.

    If you’re a “profit leader” in this industry, or you aspire to be one, then this report is a “must-have” document. Profit leaders recognize how important it is monitor and keep-up with pricing in the industry. They know that pricing products too high can lose them jobs, while pricing jobs too low can impact their bottom line!

    NPRC’s newest pricing study can be ordered now in the bookstore with most orders being processed in two hours or less!

    “This year’s study is more accurate than ever,” notes John Stewart, NPRC Executive Director. “Pricing for every product has been double-checked and then checked again for outliers. The result is a study that contains extremely accurate pricing data that printers can count on as being truly representative of current national pricing,” adds Stewart. “One of the things we stress year-after-year is that the greatest variation in pricing occurs at the local level, and not at the regional or national level as many printers often believe,” cautions Stewart.

    We know, with a high degree of certainty, that pricing for many products within a small town or city can vary by as much as 30-35% and even more, and yet the national or regional average price for that same product will rarely vary by more than 4-6%.”

    “We hate to hear printers claim that ‘price are different’ in their market, as compared to national pricing when we know absolutely that is not true,” explains Stewart. “We know with a high degree of certainty that pricing for many products within a small town or city can vary by as much as 30-35% and even more, and yet the national or regional average price for that same product will rarely vary by more than 4-6%.” Stewart adds. 

    Industry Sales Per Employee

    Average Sales Per Employee among all 196 participants average $133,892 while the median SPE was $126,667. This represents an approximate drop in SPE of approximately 5% as compared to what was reported in the summer of 2019.

    The 2021 Digital Pricing Study provides both average and median pricing for specific quantities as well as per unit pricing. This year’s report also features “Average/Median Deviation” data calculated as a percent to demonstrate the accuracy of the data collected.

    Pricing Data for Postcards

    The chart above is typical of the type of data available in NPRC’s latest study. The national average for 1M, 4/4 6×9″ Postcards is $346 with the median at $333., a pricing deviation of less than 4%.

    “Excess Earnings” Are Key to High Valuations!


    5-page valuation report

    NPRC is offering, for a limited time, a special report detailing real world valuations for 48 printing firms. The report features four special valuation charts. Each chart features key factors used to arrive at a typical company valuation.  The charts examine factors such as  –  annual sales, excess earnings, excess earnings as a percent of sales, net assets and assigned earnings multipliers.

    The valuation charts then summarize the estimated value arrived at for each of the 48 firms in question, as well as the ratio of value to annual sales.

    Top & Bottom Firms by Value

    When it comes to establishing the value of a printing company, there’s one fact that stands out above all the rest – “The value of a company has little to do with annual sales.” The charts depict that while one firm with sales of $717,000 can be worth almost $676,000 (or 94% of it sales), a similar size firm with almost identical sales of $745,000 can be worth less than $81,000 (less than 11% of sales.) The same comparisons can be made regardless of annual sales volume.

    How do you explain these great variations? Most variations in company valuations can be explained by a company’s ability or inability to generate “excess earnings.” What are “excess earnings?” Complete the form below to download your FREE copy of this special report.

      How Does Your SPE and Sales Compare to Others in the Printing Industry?

      Jan. 8, 2021 – We discovered some new stuff earlier today that we think you might find interesting! We were checking out our recent study on wages (The 2021 Printing Industry Wage & Benefits Study) when we came across three interesting graphs that we thought might be worth sharing with the industry.

      Sales Per Employee has always been one of our favorite ratios that we like to use and illustrate overall productivity and efficiency in our industry. If you’ve never calculated this number shame on you!

      Simply divide annual sales (actual or projected) by the total number of “bodies” or employees used to produce those sales to arrive at your SPE. Be sure to count everyone – owners, managers and partners. If they work in the business, whether they are paid or not, they need to be counted.

      How much do owners make? Our 2021 Wage & Benefits Study, among dozens of other key ratios, breaks out participants and ranks them by their reported “Owner’s Compensation.” The ranking is further divided into four quartiles. Although drawn from a unique data base, the responses are shockingly similar to more than a dozen similar breakouts we have used in the past. The bottom line (excuse the pun) is that 25% of the industry reports averaging less that 3% in terms of owner’s compensation, while the top quartile averages approximately 22% – Quite a spread!

      Survey Participants Ranked by 2020 Sales – About 25% of our survey participants reported average 2020 of approximately $450,000, while the top quartile in terms of annual sales reported average sales of $3.2 million in 2020. This distribution of participants by annual sales is quite similar to sales distribution reported in other recent NPRC reports.

      For additional information on this study, including a downloadable Table of Contents, visit the NPRC Bookstore today.

      Look for Lower Valued Companies Says Hunt

      Purchasing a company from the buyer’s perspective

      Industry Expert Larry Hunt Suggests
      Looking for Lower Valued Companies

      By John Stewart

      Larry Hunt

      We recently turned to our long-time friend, industry expert and author Larry Hunt and asked him for his comments as they might pertain to our recent popular blog post titled, “Excess Earnings” Are Key to High Valuations!”

      As readers may recall, we spent a considerable amount of space detailing the definition of “excess earnings” and how that numbers plays such a significant role in determining the value of a company.

      Our special report ranked 48 different printing firms based upon their estimated valuation as a percent of sales. While we presented the rankings from high to low, we did not want to suggest that the firms at the top of the list (those with the highest valuation ratios) were necessarily the best to buy. In fact, just the opposite might be suggested, at least according to Hunt.

      Larry wrote us and commented, “John, As I remember when we wrote ‘Print Shop for Sale,’ we often discussed the powerful value of Excess earnings. And while Net Assets do carry some value, as you know, I actually put a penalty in our formula for having net assets. My thinking was and still is: I would rather buy a company that can make excess earnings without forcing me to put a bunch of money into hard assets.” 

      Hunt further expanded his comments with the following, “While this list shows people what they need to do to get a great price for their company, I want to put on my buyer’s hat for a moment. If I were a buyer, I would want to buy a company that does NOT have high excess earnings. If they are already performing at the peak, then I have little I can do to improve on it. They may have been lucky or very good at what they did, but I don’t want to buy a company that is operating at perfection.”

      “I would look to buy someone like #31 Copy Masters or #26 Copy Magic,” Hunt adds. “They both have good sales but poor excess earnings. They also don’t have a lot of Net Assets. I should be able to buy either of these companies at a good price and with some decent management effort I should be able to double the value of the company without having to increase sales.”

      Once again, I want to thank my friend Larry Hunt for his sage advice and for all his contributions he has made to the industry for more than half a century.