Looking to make the right choice when looking for printing service? In this guide, we’ll unveil a range of insider secrets that will help you navigate the process without any hassles. Drawing upon our deep understanding of the printing industry and invaluable tips shared by our loyal clientele, we aim to equip you with the knowledge to make an informed decision.
So, here are 12 secrets known only to experienced customers when choosing a printing company:
1. Confirm if the company has its own production facilities
Many printing companies are merely intermediaries, lacking actual printing equipment beyond a desk and a computer. They simply outsource your order to a real printing company and charge you for their services, leading to higher costs. To ensure a better choice, opt for a printing company that possesses its own production capabilities.
Therefore, do not hesitate to request a tour of their production facilities. If they refuse, it should raise concerns, indicating that useing such a printing service would be a mistake.
2. Avoid opting for the cheapest printing company
Remember, there are no miracles. Customers who opt for printing organizations offering the lowest prices often end up with products of poor quality. So, how can you choose a printing company and save money?
The explanation is simple. These “cheap” printing companies usually cut costs on various aspects, resulting in disappointing end products. It is more logical to focus on the optimal price-to-quality ratio.
3. Don’t assume that a large printing company is necessarily the best
This secret doesn’t imply that a large-scale production is subpar. However, it is crucial to understand that larger enterprises operate like a continuous flow or a conveyor belt. If you desire an individual approach where your ideas and preferences receive due attention, smaller or medium-sized printing companies are often a better choice. Such establishments tend to prioritize customer satisfaction. Therefore, consider selecting a printing company of this nature.
4. Inquire about the age and origin of the equipment
Nothing lasts forever, and printing equipment is no exception. Over time, equipment deteriorates, breaks down, and loses its original specifications. Consequently, products manufactured using such “worn-out” equipment tend to fall below average in terms of quality. Even in its new state, cheap equipment will likely “surprise you with its quality.”
To find a printing company with decent equipment, don’t hesitate to inquire about the manufacturing year, usage history, and maintenance records of the printing machinery you are interested in. The younger the equipment and the more meticulous its upkeep, the higher the chances of selecting a reliable performer and obtaining excellent products.
5. Always request product samples
To ensure high-quality printing, it is crucial to pay attention to the color reproduction on the samples. The colors should appear vibrant and vivid, with a wide range of contrast.
Check the printing quality of elements featuring the same color. There should be no streaks, and the color should remain consistent across all parts of the monochromatic element in the product.
Thoroughly examine the samples for any ink marks, such as dots or specks, which can occur when debris enters the ink system of the printing machine.
By scrutinizing the print quality of samples, you can consider this factor while choosing a printing company and form an informed opinion about the capabilities of a particular production facility.
6. Evaluate the expertise of the printing company’s employees
When selecting a printing company, it’s crucial to assess the qualifications of their staff. Some printing companies, in an effort to cut costs, hire inexperienced personnel who may lack attention to detail and produce subpar printed materials. It’s important to recognize that this is not due to malicious intent, but rather a lack of knowledge and skills.
Therefore, it is essential to inquire about the individuals who will handle your order and their qualifications. Consider this factor when looking for printing service.
7. Be present during the printing process to avoid surprises
To prevent any unpleasant surprises, try to be present while your materials are being printed, especially for book printing and other important projects. Being physically present allows you to have direct influence over the printing process and intervene if something doesn’t meet your expectations.
Moreover, your presence at the printing facility helps ensure the printing company employees remain disciplined and maintain a responsible approach to fulfilling your order.
8. Select the appropriate printing method based on the print run
Choosing the right printing method is crucial, and it depends on the scale of your print run. Remember that digital printing is preferable for small quantities needed quickly, while offset printing is more cost-effective and efficient for larger print runs. Read more about this here.
9. Properly prepare materials for printing
Printing companies value well-prepared electronic materials for printing. Each printing company typically has a document with technical requirements, and it’s important to adhere to them diligently. Failure to do so may result in the printers refusing to work with your layouts or incurring additional fees to rectify mistakes.
If you lack the knowledge to prepare electronic layouts on your own, consider choosing a printing company that offers design and pre printing service to handle all the necessary preparations.
10. Inquire about the quality of paper, materials, and inks used
High-quality paper, ink, printing plates, and chemicals are essential for satisfactory results. Nobody wants faded inks, yellowed and flaking paper, or low-quality prints due to subpar materials.
Therefore, gather information about the materials used, including their names and country of origin. Generally, reputable printing companies source their consumables and paper from experienced European companies known for producing high-quality materials. Opting for a printing company that utilizes such materials is a sensible choice.
11. Don’t compromise on paper quality
In an attempt to save money, inexperienced clients often choose the cheapest paper option available. However, seasoned customers understand that, for example, coated paper may only be around 10% more expensive than uncoated paper. While the final product printed on coated paper may cost approximately 5% more than the same product on uncoated paper, it will appear much brighter and more impressive.
12. Assess customer service and legality before making a decision
When selecting a printing company, consider their customer service quality and legal aspects. A reputable printing company should offer delivery options, accept various forms of payment, and operate under a contract.
In conclusion, we emphasize the importance of considering all the advice provided. By doing so, you can effectively safeguard yourself against unexpected issues and make an informed decision when choosing the right and best printing company for your specific needs.