As a cataloger, no doubt you always want to increase the amount of revenue per catalog (RPC) mailed to your housefile and to outside prospects.
As you boost circulation, your RPC will decrease since catalogs are being sent to lower-performing names, generally to prospects. So a general caveat: The more you mail, the less RPC you’ll achieve.
Increasing RPC most often will result in increasing your bottom line. So if you grow by increasing circulation, how can you maintain or increase the RPC?
This month I offer 10 proven ways to increase your RPC.
1. Add pages.
By adding pages to your catalog, you leverage postage costs and increase the RPC. This assumes, of course, that you have enough quality merchandise available to support the additional square inches of selling space.
When direct-selling costs increase, there’s a tendency for catalogers to reduce page counts. But that makes it even more difficult to absorb various cost increases. Boosting your page count will help you dilute those cost increases, and your RPC will rise.
Rule of thumb: Your RPC will increase by one-half the percentage increase in page count. For example, if your page count increases 20 percent, your RPC should increase by about 10 percent.
This assumes, of course, that your page density remains the same and that product offerings increase accordingly. Increasing pages is one of the few real bargains afforded catalogers today.
2. Eliminate marginal names.
Your incremental break-even point* is and will continue to be higher. Therefore, marginal buyer names and outside prospect names should be eliminated.
Let’s assume your incremental break-even point is $1.25 per catalog mailed. Eliminating marginal names and/or not mailing to outside lists performing at less than the incremental break-even point will increase your RPC. Don’t reduce the amount of prospecting too much, or you could be limiting the growth rate of your housefile.