All Commercial Printing Companies Are Not The Same Posted: April 22nd, 2013 in 5 Ways to Find the Right Commercial Printer for Your Business In the ongoing effort to save money, businesses are always looking for the best possible value for their dollar. Unfortunately sometimes this leads many of them to assume that all commercial printers in New York are the same. They aren’t because not every printer provides value added services such as fast turnaround times, preflighting of your files, management of client data, comprehensive design services, availability beyond 9-to-5 and most important, the value add of experience. In short, forward thinking NYC commercial printing companies do more than just put print on paper; they’re interested in helping you meet the needs of how to market your business. To be clear, all commercial printer services break down into four separate areas; design & prepress, printing, finishing (i.e. folding, cutting, and binding), and fulfillment (i.e. packing, storing, and shipping). However, some high-end commercial printing firms may also offer such value-added services as Web design, CD packaging, database management, and consulting as well. Because there is such a wide variety of commercial printing companies in the Big Apple, businesses seeking this type of service should follow the checklist below of things to take into account when hiring a commercial printer in order to guarantee that they get the best possible quality print job at the best price. #1. Research, Reference, Review Ask your friends, coworkers and fellow business owners about any experiences they’ve had with commercial print companies. While this step can save you a lot of time and money, mostly it will save you headaches from poorly done jobs performed by inadequate printers without sufficient knowledge of what they were doing. Once you’ve gotten the names of a few printers, call or visit them and ask what experiences they’ve had with projects similar to yours. If necessary, visit the shop and asked for samples of previous projects. Don’t leave anything to chance. #2. Consider Price AND Quality Instead of focusing only on price for a given printing job, focus on the value you receive for your money. If you’re only interested in paying the least amount of money to print something out, you should probably visit an office supply store and pay four or five cents per copy for printing services. If, however, you’re interested in getting a quality print job, then you know that you’re going to have to pay more than four or five cents per copy. Avoid commercial printers who quote you an extremely low price for a job that you know should cost considerably more, is a good bet that the quality of work they do is probably very poor as well. #3. Don’t Pit One Printer Against AnotherNormally, competition is good for consumers as it forces businesses to find new, better and less expensive ways to operate. But this isn’t necessarily true when it comes to choosing between commercial printers as the printing industry relies upon repeat clients that provide them with regular work to stay in business. Consequently, a good commercial printer will reward loyal customers by going the extra distance for them so when you try to play one printer against another it might help you save a few bucks in the short term but in the long run you’ll only be hurting yourself as that printer will be more likely to turn you down the next time you have a major project that requires fast production at the last minute. #4. Make Sure They Guarantee Their Work There isn’t a reputable printer out there who doesn’t offer some type of guarantee on their printing. On a practical level, this means that if they make a mistake they’ll correct it without charging or that they’ll offer a full refund instead of excuses if they fail to finish a project within a previously specified time frame. Never the less, it’s always a good idea to get any type of guarantee in writing just to make sure you’re protected in the event that something goes wrong. #5. Ask About SubcontractorsBelieve or not, there are some commercial printers who work more or less as order takers and don’t do the actual printing themselves but rather farm it out to real commercial printers. Even though the price and/or quality of work of these “print brokers”‘ might be acceptable, problems will occur when something goes wrong or a last-minute change in the production is needed as these middlemen cannot provide you with the level of customer service you would get if you could pick up the phone and talk to the person actually working on your project. Every business requires printing services on a regular basis which is why it so important to find a high quality commercial printer to work with. Using unprofessional or sub-standard printing services can have a bad impact on your business by hurting it’s image. That’s why it’s important to arm yourself with a little knowledge before you try choosing between NYC commercial printers in an effort to distinguish between those that’s offer quality work at a fair price combined with solid customer service and those that just pretend they do.