Frequently Asked Questions, FAQ
How many computers can I install Fast Accurate Bids on?
When you purchase Fast Accurate Bids, you are purchasing a single-user license key that lets you register the software on two computers.
If two people are using the program at the same time, you need two copies.
There is a $200 off the 2nd copy.
Thank you for supporting our hard work.
Item Sale Prices - Are they in the Supplier price lists?
Sale prices of items are NOT included in supplier price lists, from the supplier.
Sales are temporary and the supplier prices lists are long term. Therefore the sale prices are not part of the FAB Choose item Page prices.
If an item is on sale and you want to use the sale price in your bid, see the next tab in this FAQ.
You will need to go to the supplier's website , if you want to check on an item from your supplier to see if it's on sale,
There is a button on the Choose Item Page to take you to their website.
Unless you know when your client is going to place the order and you are sure the items will still be on sale, it is a good idea to use the regular price for the item. Using the item sale price in a bid and when the order comes in, the sale is over could eliminate any profit on the job.
XXL and other oversized items, How do I get them in the bids?
Oversized items cost more from the suppliers so you should charge more to your customer.
Please note that people that wear oversized items know they cost more and will not be surprised.
Using a Mixed Item Bid allows for a mixture of regular size items and oversized items
You can edit the description on the Design and Pricing Page to add the sizes in the description.
Which size item should I use for the bid? Small, Medium, Large or XLarge?
The price for the small, medium, large and xlarge are almost always the same price, so the bid will come out to the same price to the client.
Note that oversized items do cost more.
What about other suppliers like Bodek & Rhodes, Cutter & Buck, Tri-Mountain or any other supplier?
Any item from any supplier can be added to a bid.
We are working on other supplier connectors. The "Additional Tools" button on the Design and Pricing Page will take you to all the current supplier connectors usable within FAB.
Any item from any supplier can be added to a bid two ways.
1) Editing the "Current Item" on the Design and Pricing Page with any information from any vendor.
2) Adding an item to the "Custom Item Page"
Why do I need a commission in my bids?
Commissions are usually paid to salespeople for making the sale.
If you do not have a salesperson now, you might in the future and you will have the commission built into your pricing.
There are other uses for the commission in Fast Accurate Bids.
1) You are making the sales, why don't you make a commission yourself?
2) If you want to give a discount to schools or churches, taking 1/2 off the commission is an easy way to cut your prices to them and still get your full decorations charges and full item price with it's markup.
3) If you are a contract decorator, you can remove the commission completely, as the company you are doing the decorating for, is your salesperson and still get your full decorations charges and full item price with it's markup.
How do I charge for shipping to the client?
On the Design and Pricing Page there is a Distributed Charge field, using this will add the shipping over the entire line item.
Adding a $40 to this field will spread the amount over the entire line item.
Note that Commission and Decoration Markup are added to this amount.
How often to update supplier prices?
Once a week, depending on the supplier.
Suppliers are getting new items all the time, and the updates will include any new items and any price changes.
The price lists from the supplier do NOT include sale prices, you need to go to their website and check for sale prices.
How do I charge for Vinyl?
That is not an easy question to answer. Every shop is different, so there is no easy formula we can put in FAB.
Here’s a free vinyl pricing calculator that you can use for vinyl pricing and for anything other type of decoration you sell by size for that matter.
Can I Set the Price of bid item for the Line Items List?
Yes, you can override the calculated price, using the "Set Final Item Price"
Set Final Price, the last direct entry field in the Pricing and Adjustments area, lets you override the calculations and specify right down to the penny what you want the bid amount per item to be.
The intention of this field is to let you tweak the pricing based on your business judgment about what’s best for the sale. For example, for some customers you may choose to round a price such as $6.03 either up to $6.05 or possibly down to $6.00. For other customers, you may choose to change it to $5.97. It’s entirely up to you.
When you use Set Final Price to override the calculated price, the Pricing Analysis Page still shows the complete calculated pricing and also lists the set customer price so that you have a record of how you arrived and the price for the line item.
What is Fast Accurate Bids?
Fast Accurate Bids is a Windows PC software application for both large and small commercial screen printers, in-house screen printers, embroiderers, and other apparel decorators. This easy-to-use program generates customer quotes quickly, accurately, and consistently. It makes the bid process so easy and reliable that you will feel secure letting even the least experienced person on your staff create customer estimates for your company.
What makes your software so fast?
There are lots of product features that make Fast Accurate Bids fast. Here are four we want to make sure you know about. First, our supplier connectors automate access to supplier pricing files. This means no more manually looking up item prices. Second, our built-in pricing profiles allow you to immediately start using the program and fast-track the process of customizing it for your business. Third, our intuitive Design and Pricing Page automatically displays the resulting pricing as each decoration task is added. This means entering bid information is so easy that it can be done while talking with the customer. No more time spent scribbling notes and later trying to puzzle out what those notes mean. Moreover, the customer doesn’t have to wait to get pricing. And finally, with a single click of the mouse, Fast Accurate Bids automatically sends your completed bid to a Microsoft Word document and you’re done.
How versatile is Fast Accurate Bids in creating bids for different types of customers?
Fast Accurate Bids can create all the typical types of bids needed for apparel decoration. Whether the customer wants pricing on an assortment of sizes, for example 24, 36, 48, or an assortment of items, for example T-shirts and hoodies with the same image, we can handle that. The program can also handle either itemized or all inclusive pricing. It’s easy and completely your choice.
How long does it take to set up Fast Accurate Bids?
This varies from customer to customer. If you don’t already have firmly established pricing policies, then you can simply choose which of the pricing profiles you want to use and you can be up and running in a matter of minutes. If you have invested time and energy in coming up with pricing policies for your particular business, then you will probably want to spend an hour or two hour working with the Settings Page to edit the pricing profiles or even come up with your own set of custom pricing profiles. The Fast Accurate Bids Shop Owner’s Manual provides detailed information that can help you with setting up pricing profiles.
What if I’m just starting out and don’t know what settings I should use?
The software comes with several complete pricing profiles that are filled out with default values. These values are based on a range of industry numbers. If you’re new to the screen printing and apparel decoration business, these pricing profiles provide a reasonable starting place for your pricing guideline.
Is there an instruction manual?
Yes, in fact, there are two. There is a User’s Manual that explains how to generate bids and work with the software on a day-to-day basis. There is a Shop Owner’s Manual that explains the settings and features for customizing the pricing for your particular business. Feel free to download these manuals from the Resources page on our website and take a look.
I already use one of the fully featured software packages for screen printing shops. Is there anything your product has to offer me that I don’t already have?
There is no way for us to know what you already have, but we do know that Fast Accurate Bids can offer you a convenient way to keep your bids separate from your orders. This means that you can be assured that the bids that never turned in to orders aren’t left around to clutter up your business management software. Also, if you currently use a pricing spreadsheet in combination with your business management software, Fast Accurate Bids is a faster, easier-to-use tool that can completely replace your spreadsheet. Finally, the Fast Accurate Bids Price List Creator makes it possible to easily and quickly generate screen printing price lists based on your particular pricing policies and any item you want.
Can Fast Accurate Bids help me stay on top of supplier pricing changes?
Yes. Our program uses our proprietary supplier connectors to automate the process of bringing pricing information into the Fast Accurate Bids software installed on your computer. To use a supplier connector, you must enter your customer login on the supplier’s website. This protects the pricing information of the supplier and assures that your prices are correct.
We welcome your suggestions on which apparel providers for supplier connectors would be of the most interest to you.
How frequently do item prices get updated?
That’s up to you. There is a field on the Choose Item Page that displays the number of days it’s been since item prices were last updated, and you can click the Update Supplier Prices button on this page to update the item prices as frequently as you want.
Can I keep my pricing information secure so my employees don’t have access to it?
Yes. Fast Accurate Bids allows you to set a password for the program. Then, unless this optional password is supplied as part of the login process, the buttons for both the Settings Page and the Pricing Analysis Page are removed from the other pages in the program. Password protecting Fast Accurate Bids is easy and guarantees that the details of your pricing policies are secure. It also makes it easier for you to teach your employees how to create bids because only the pages they need to be concerned with are visible.
If I don’t use any of the suppliers you support, can I still use your software?
Of course. The Fast Accurate Bids Custom Item Page allows you to build your own list of items from any vendors you want.
And another thing, we will be adding connector programs for lots of additional vendors. The current list of supplier connectors is the beginning. If there is a vendor that you particularly like working with, let us know.
Can I put my company logo on my bids?
Yes. Fast Accurate Bid provides a built-in Microsoft Word template that you can customize to automatically open with your company’s logo and also with the information that you like to routinely use on bids. The process for customizing the Word template is described in the Fast Accurate Bids Shop Owner’s Manual.
What kind of technical support is offered?
We provide free telephone support from 9 AM until 5 PM Pacific Time regarding questions about the Fast Accurate Bids software. You may also contact us with technical support questions using the contact form on our Support page.
Does Fast Accurate Bids run on a tablet PC?
It depends on the tablet PC. It definitely runs on the Microsoft Surface.
The Microsoft sells two versions of the Surface – the Surface 2 with a 10 inch screen or the Surface Pro 3 with a 12 inch screen. Both the Surface 2 and the Surface Pro 3 are Windows 8.1 tablets and run Fast Accurate Bids for Embroidery just fine.
If you’re a Craigslist shopper, avoid the Surface RT. Don’t be tempted by the lower price. This was the earliest version of the Surface and uses the Windows RT operation system, which is designed for running mobile devices. Microsoft no longer sells Surface RT tablets, and Fast Accurate Bids does not run on a Surface RT.
Can I use Fast Accurate Bids on my MacIntosh?
You can run Fast Accurate Bids in a Windows emulation program on your MacIntosh. Our local Apple store recommends a program called Parallels. Check out their link. They provide great information on how it works. If you already have a Windows emulation program on your Macintosh, give it a try using our 30 day free trial software.
I am using the 30 day free trial, and I have some technical and/or functionality questions. Am I eligible for support?
Yes, absolutely. We’re happy to help you. Feel free to call. In about 15 minutes or so, Steve Steiger, can teach you how to use the software and answer any questions you may have. By the way, in addition to being one of the partners at Fast Accurate Bids, Steve owns our sister company Bellingham Screen Printing and has almost 30 years experience as an apparel decorator. We come from a background of screen printing and enjoy talking with other people about their pricing and estimating concerns. Our number is 36O-752-33lO.
When I buy Fast Accurate Bids, what do I get?
When you buy Fast Accurate Bids, you get a single-user license key that allows you to register the Fast Accurate Bids software so that it doesn’t expire 30 days from the day that you first installed it on your computer. You can use the license key to unlock the software on any two Windows PCs of your choice ( e.g., a desktop PC and a laptop computer). For special needs, contact Fast Accurate Bids customer service.