Choosing the right printing service for your business is essential for the best outcome for your printing project. There are a number of considerations that you need to make prior to choosing a printer. Taking your time during this process can mean the difference between getting a great deliverable and getting something that you won’t be able to use.
What’s more, once you have found the right printing service, you can develop a long-term relationship that will allow you to get the printing services that you need again and again.
Keep reading to learn seven steps for finding the right printing service.
Find a Company with Strong Customer Service
For many people, strong customer service may not be the number one consideration. If you consider the implications of poor customer service, however, you might change your mind. You see, poor customer service often means that the products delivered by the company are poorly done as well. You should directly correlate the way that you’re treated, the ability of the staff to answer your questions and the speed in which they respond to your questions to the end product that they will deliver.
Look for a Low Stress Environment
When it’s possible, you should visit the printing service prior to agreeing to contract with them for a service. Observe the atmosphere in the facility. A well-managed company that is organized will be low stress. While their may be many people working quickly at their tasks, there shouldn’t be arguing, rushing, or talk of not being able to meet a deadline. The more comfortable everyone is the less likely they are to make mistakes and the more likely they are to meet their deadlines.
Compare Sample Products
Most printing services have sample products that you can handle and review to give you an idea of what an end product will look like. Don’t hesitate to ask for samples of products that you want printed, such as brochures, banners and so on.
While you can’t expect to get a full banner in the mail, you may get a reduced version so that you can see the quality of the ink on the banner for yourself. You cannot get a good idea of quality from a website; in-hand products are the best way to determine how something is going to look and feel!
Look for a Variety of Services
When you have a medical issue, you see a specialist, but when it comes to printing services, you want to find a printing service that does it all. Part of the reason for this is that developing a relationship with a printer that you can trust is important. Developing that kind of relationship with several specialty companies is difficult.
Another thing to look for is the ability to print in large format as well as small format sizes. Many printing companies don’t offer large format printing such as the sizes you would need for blueprints and larger. This can leave you in a bind should you need signage for a trade show or other large format printing.
Other things to look for are different media types. Magnets, posters, vinyl, canvas and more are all viable surfaces for printing. Finding a service that can print on each of these materials can prove to be beneficial down the road.
Find a Service that Can Transition into Digital Media
Digital media is just as important as printed media these days. A company that can create digital brochures and banners for you is just as important as a company that can print high quality brochures and banners for your company. If you can find a company with online marketing experience that will be even better. They can advise you regarding the best fonts, graphics and layouts for digital media versus printed media.
Choose a Company that Offers Design Services
While you may not need the services of an offsite design team today, you never know when you will need such services. A printing company that offers design services is great; however, not every design service is the same.
You want to look for a design team that works with multiple desktop publishing programs. Corel Draw, for example, has an excellent wire frame option that is great for creating vinyl print and decals for signs. Photoshop offers excellent manipulation tools for existing graphics.
While these specific programs aren’t necessary, having multiple options for manipulating media will ensure that any task can be done. Naturally, the staff needs to be experts at using the programs that the printing company utilizes.
This last step is an obvious one for most people. Choosing a company that you can afford to use is something that you don’t have a choice about. In some cases, you can do a comparison between companies and come back for a new estimate on the job or services that you need. If you have a written estimate from another source, the printer you really want to use may be willing to match it. The bottom line is you won’t know until you try.