When it comes to printing, there are many different options for processing a job, depending on the complexity of the project, the number of prints needed and deadline. While traditional methods such as offset printing are used for larger projects, short-run digital printing can be the perfect solution for smaller quantities and is ideal for print requirements for events such as conferences or presentations. With such varying printing needs and job processing requirements, web-to-print has proven itself to be a boon for supporting print service providers in reducing pre-press cost with quick turnaround time. Also, the Web-to-Print applications, for the past years have been looked at like a great companion for any type of printing. Whether it is litho, digital, web, short run, long run or transactional, web-to-print solutions have been lately paired to fit all of those models.
Web-to-print also known as online printing or print on demand service, offers a variety of print options that make it fairly easy for those of you who don’t have a background in print or design to order their customized print products online. A complete web-to-print software can provide quick, cheap and efficient way to order prints for personalized business cards to letterheads, marketing leaflets to flyers and a lot more. So I thought it might be a good idea to give you a quick overview of what the web to print solutions actually has to offer to the printers and how it can it help them in bringing more business for short print runs.
It basically is a commercial pre-press process that bridges the gap from digital content online and commercial print production. What this means is that print buyers can create, edit, upload their own designs and templates or choose from a vast array of pre-designed templates allowing them to personalize, preview and approve the completed design during the pre-press phase. This means reducing the overall pre-press cycle time and resulting in significant cost reduction as well as enabling to print more jobs efficiently, reducing idle machine time. Apart from these benefits, there are many advantages that the web to print solution can provide to PSPs, which in the end can result in increase in the business.
Unprecedented Design Flexibility
Design is subjective, and can change depending on customer preferences, demographics and occasions. The best take away for the short-run printers is that one can easily customize and personalize each printed piece online and place order without needing assistance. And with the web-to-print technology, whether you desire to offer different templates and layouts for different markets, or even different designs for individual customers, you can set it all. Also, you can offer online print ordering for all the products including the ones with limited design surfaces and also the irregular shape products having definite printable areas. This makes short run digital printing a good option at minimal cost when your customer needs print material for an upcoming event and they need it on an urgent basis.
Reduce Error Rate
As web-to-print lets your customers prepare their own artwork and approve it in real-time before ordering, it reduces the chances of error in artwork design to almost 0%. Giving the customers the authority to make any last-minute copy adjustments until job is sent to printing, may also lead to a reduction in the print waste as the final product has been approved by them and then only processed for printing.
Streamlined Workflow for Perfection
Unlike other jobs, the short run print jobs need perfection throughout the entire workflow. Though the run time of their machines for a given print product is short, the short run printers are decked up with higher number of assignments in order to keep their machines busy as much as possible. That is where the web-to-print or online printing solutions mainly come at support. These robust solutions help you to streamline your entire workflow without much manual intervention, and you can keep track of each stage of printing process for all the different jobs simultaneously through predefined statuses. The entire print management and workflow is automated for a hassle-free operation so you get rid of human efforts and errors, which finally increase the chances of perfection.
Save Time and Money
If your customers only require a small number of printed documents, they should be able to order only required quantities at minimal cost. By taking your print business online, you give the ownership in the hands of your customers, to check pricing for different number of quantity and thus order number of prints that fits their budget. They can thus select how many copies they want you to print, with the quality of the paper selected from the ones you offer along with all the other variables you set, and all you got to do is what you are best at – print the products, that too in exactly that number , no more, no less at predefined price . You really do not have to offer volume discounts – they will pay for what they need. Your customers also don’t have to over-order to protect themselves against high costs or reordering hassles. If they need more copies, they are free to re-order with of course any changes if necessary and you can always print more.
With a complete web to print solution, you can always keep your machines busy by offering personalization on various products. Your storefront for the short-run engines can offer print on an extensive range of products, all within the same production workflow. Whether it is a post card, business card, brochures, banners or flyers or any other irregular shape products having definite printable areas like t-shirts, mugs, caps, phone cases etc., short run printing through your online store is a good option for offering your customers a wide range of ready to print products along with up-selling and cross selling techniques if needed, and later producing them quickly and accurately.
Satisfaction and Flexibility to Customers
While most of the web to print applications allows customers to customise pre-designed templates, it also allows for customers to upload their own unique content for automated print production. With all these benefits of the web-to-print solution, you basically create a great way of producing small print runs at low prices with quick delivery, making it ideal choice for your customers to test their marketing ideas with limit prints before going down the route and ordering a large volume of printed materials. Hence, it offers your customers to use their creativity and/or order prints at any time of the day in smaller quantities, and your customers can even save their designs and share it among their friends and family for their feedback, before ordering final prints. Such facilities definitely results in high customer retention and better customer acquisition.
Reduced Inventory and Operational Cost
By enabling short run jobs through an online print ordering solution, you eliminate the risk and expense involved in inventory management and warehousing. It allows a business to concentrate on its core activities while simultaneously streamlining its ordering and distribution process. Also, as printing is getting revolutionized with many new printing techniques like embossing, UV, de-bossing, varnish, etc, it’s not feasible to produce and supply all sorts of inventory and printing services in-house due to the high set up cost for all. Hence you can get all your in-house applications integrated with the online printing solution and also engage and partner with others to offer a one stop solution to all your customers and serve all their printing needs. Reduced turnaround times, labour and inventory will eventually lead to reduced costs across the supply chain.
Success Stories – Next Day Flyers and Over Night Prints
Let us see how two of the globally successful short run print providers with an online printing solution differ themselves by consistently raising the customer’s expectations and then exceed them through various ways. Just like the name suggests, Next Day Flyers is an online printing company that delivers top-quality printed marketing materials with one of the fastest turnaround times in the industry. They specialize in full color printing of custom business cards, brochures, greeting cards, postcards, as well as specialty die cuts and other marketing materials. With Next Day Flyers the print ready files completed and approved by 6pm PT are printed and ready to ship out the next business day.
Whereas for Over Night Prints, whether you’re using a template or uploading a customized image, you are free to place your order by 8:00 pm EST and your high quality product will be in your hands the next day. Such convenience to your customers can be offered only by enabling your print business online. They offer wide range of print products from Original Premium Business Cards, Ultra Thick Fat Business Cards and Sandwich Business Cards to stunning Postcards or Brochures that make people take notice. Their website speaks that ‘Whether you have 5 or 5 million employees, we’re making ordering simple for you and your business.’
Online printing websites, that are built using web-to-print features, offer a convenient way to produce personalized short-run jobs with print workflow automation, thus allowing print service providers to increase their workflow efficiency. Here the print buyers also get the total control of every aspect in the process, from designing their desired product, to selecting the print material and production technique with quantity that fits their budget and delivery timeline.
But even with the web-to-print application or online printing services and other kinds of automated job processing software, keeping the printing machine busy in producing short-run work at or close to capacity, is always an open-ended obligation. You have to consistently raise the customer’s expectations about short-run digital printing through innovative approaches and offers.
Well, these are just a few of the most important advantages of serving short run printing jobs. We recommend complete web-to-print software for short run digital printing to many of our clients because it offers flexibility, versatility, convenience, and precision and is appropriate for producing a wide variety of printed materials without much supervision and manual intervention.
If you’d like to learn more about how web-to-print helps in processing short run-jobs, we’re always available to provide you with more information and advice. Contact us with your questions and business requirements at firstname.lastname@example.org, or click here to get a quote!