The Ultimate Guide to Pricing Your Enamel Pins

The Ultimate Guide to Pricing Your Enamel Pins

This blog is part of a larger series of articles, aimed at making it easier for you to create enamel pins. Read more at: 6 things you need to consider when making enamel pins

Pricing enamel pins is no different to pricing any of your other art. It can be a slightly confusing, sometimes anxiety-inducing adventure, but it doesn’t have to be. I hope this guide lays out the different aspects of pricing your item, and you feel confident that you will generate a profit for your hard work!

Broadly speaking, when you are selling goods, for each product you sell, there are three numbers you need to know. The unit cost, the wholesale price, and the retail price.

What is the difference between unit cost, wholesale price, and retail price.

When it comes to pricing your enamel pins, there are actually three amounts you need to work out, the unit cost, the wholesale price, and the retail price. 

  • The unit cost is how much each pin costs to make (including all packaging).
  • The wholesale price is how much you would sell your pin to a retailer for.
  • The Retail price is how much you would charge a customer for the pin.

How do I work out the unit cost of my enamel pins?

When it comes to product pricing, typically the unit cost is easy to work out. However, when it comes to enamel pins, the costs aren’t quite so straightforward, due to there being both fixed and variable costs, and because parts of the finished product are often made by different companies in different countries, and assembled before sending to a customer.

Let’s start with the pin itself. I want to preface this by saying if you use a third party middleman to order your pins, you will know up front how much each pin costs, as these companies very clearly tell you how much you will be paying for your order up front. Simply divide the final price by the number of pins you’re ordering, and you have your unit price. If you are ordering multiple pins directly from a manufacturer, however, the pricing may need a bit of deciphering first.

The different types of costs in enamel pin manufacturing

First, it’s important to know there are 2 different types of costs in pin manufacturing, fixed, and variable. Fixed costs are things that will cost the same, no matter how many pins you order. Examples of these costs are:

  • Cost of the mould
  • Set up costs for each screen print colour

When working out the price of your pins, you need to divide these costs by the number of pins you order, so the more pins you get, the less of an impact on the unit price these expenses will have. It’s also worth noting that most manufacturers will keep your mould for 2 years, meaning if you need to reorder pins within this period, you won’t need to pay this fee again.

The other type of expense that impacts your unit cost are variable expenses. These costs will change depending on how many pins you order. This includes things like:

  • Cost of the metal for the pins
  • Speciality finishes (glitter, glow in the dark, stained glass etc)
  • Labour cost for screen printing.
  • Backing cards
  • Cello bags

examples of different fixed and variable costs that you need to consider when creating enamel pins

The final type of expenses you need to pay attention to are platform fees and shipping costs. 

If you are working with a manufacturer overseas, shipping will be fairly pricey, but this cost can be split across all the pins in your order. So if you are ordering 4 designs, and 50 of each, then you can divide your shipping cost by 200, and add that to your unit price.

Finally, depending on the platform you use, you will have to pay a platform fee. On Aliexpress, it’s a 5% platform fee, once all your unit costs have been totalled up, you’ll need to add 5% to this number.

After adding all this together, you’ll have your unit cost. To help make this process easier, I’ve created a google spreadsheet. Just put in the base costs, and it’ll spit out what your unit cost is! You can find it here: Enamel Pin Cost Calculator

How do I work out the sale price for my enamel pins?

When it comes to pricing your enamel pins (or any of your art) for retail, the general rule of thumb is to double the unit cost to get a wholesale price, and then double the wholesale price to get a retail price.

Taking time to work out a wholesale price is important if you want to see your products in stores in the future. Companies that buy your products need to make a profit when they sell them, and will typically look to pay 50% of the sale price for your goods.

If you are working with smaller independent stores, there may be a bit of wiggle room in terms of what percent discount you can offer for the wholesale price, but keep in mind that the number one priority for a potential stockist is making money from their sales.

In the spreadsheet I linked above, I’ve added fields for you to change the markup of your items. For some items in my store, I order close to the minimum order quantity, meaning each unit costs more than if I ordered five times as much. By working backwards and finding a price point that works for both retail and wholesale (while still making a profit on both), I am set up to scale without reworking my entire price list.


  • In short, add up all the costs associated with creating your pin, and multiply that number by 4 to get your sale price. 
  • I created a spreadsheet that can work out you unit cost, wholesale price and retail price that you can access for free at: Enamel Pin Cost Calculator
  • Know your worth. You worked hard on your pins, so don't undercut your profits to compete with high street chains who are ordering 1000s of units at a time!

For more tips and advice on enamel pin creation, check out my blog post: 6 things you need to consider when making enamel pins

If you want to check out the enamel pins I have available, click here

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