Online vs traditional printing. What are the benefits and is one better than the other? It’s something being asked more and more. Just to be clear, we don’t mean digital printing vs traditional litho printing. We’re talking about getting your job done with a printer you speak to. Or doing the whole thing online through a website without any contact.

There may well be times when online printers are the right solution for you. And if that’s the case you should go with them, because getting the right solution is what matters. But is that always the case? Here are five things you should always consider before deciding traditional printer vs online printer, even if you ultimately decide online meets your needs on certain occasions.

1. The Support You Receive

With a traditional printer you can talk to someone, so we’re more like a consultant helping you through the whole process from beginning to end. If you aren’t sure exactly what you need, maybe you don’t know what 130gsm silk feels like compared to 250 gsm gloss for example, that’s where being able to talk to someone comes in very handy. You don’t want to go with something only to be disappointed when you see the end result because it’s not what you intended.

2. Advice

We can explain the differences, send you samples if you wanted, give you options and suggest alternatives where needed. It’s much more difficult to do that with an online printer. An online printer is geared to the minimum amount of contact, getting the job in and out as quickly as possible. Which keeps your costs down of course, but also means there’s no help during the process. So getting the right / best solution isn’t as guaranteed.

3. Customer Service

It’s not just that ongoing support, it’s the overall customer service experience that differs as well. Knowing you can pick up a phone to check on where your job is gives you a lot more peace of mind. And we’re always on hand to let you know what stage your job’s at. Rather than online where your options are a chat bot or email only for enquiries and assistance.

4. Regular Contact

First of all, you can visit us. We’re always delighted if a customer wants to pop in. We get you might want to check us out and feel confident we’ll deliver a top notch job. But if you can’t get to us, or we can’t get to you, we’ll have a Teams or Zoom call. That personal, individual touch can be a great start on a print job. We’ve found that most clients need pointers on where to begin, and the processes and finishes needed to get the end result they’re after.

5. Process Quality

With online printers everything is automated and managed remotely by a service provider. If you’ve got a basic, straightforward job with not many steps, processes or finishes, that’s absolutely fine. But for anything more than a simple, uncomplicated job, it might not be. Choosing an online printer means there’s no help with artwork creation and how to set it up for print. Essentially, if your file’s aren’t right to begin with, that won’t be picked up or checked. And the end result will include those things that were wrong. That could be anything from images not being hi-res enough, colours not re-producing as you intended, mistakes not picked up, incorrect fonts or elements being misaligned for example. And you don’t get to check a physical proof before hitting ‘go’.

Care and attention is built into everything we do at KNP because we’re here to delver the very best job for our clients, each and every time. We can always send you a proof for approval, and all our print jobs go through several quality checks during the process. If we notice anything that’s not right prior to printing, we’ll call you and let you know, giving you the chance to correct things before the job goes to print. And those checks continue once the job’s started, until it’s finished.

6. Sustainability

This is a huge, massive subject on its own so we won’t go deep into it here but checking out environmental credentials will probably be a big influence on your decision making. You can check us out here and see what we manage to achieve in 12 months here but most of all, you can talk to us or come in to see everything we do. We’ll build up trust and give you confidence by talking you through what being FSC accredited means, our ISO 14001 certification, and we’ll go through everything we do to reduce, reuse and recycle.

Online vs traditional printing. What’s right for you?

So, there are a few things for you to consider. If it’s simple, basic, something you’ve done before, online might be fine. As long as the price is right of course! But if you want someone that can help you from start to finish, spend time with you to get the best possible outcome and look out for jour job at each step, maybe a traditional printer is the right solution.

Want to talk about it?

Just think of this, if you wanted to check all that out, we’re here to answer any questions you have. Or you could call someone at the online……

We’re here if you need us!