Local printers. You’ll be shocked at the different price ranges between one print shop to the next. One will have letterhead 50% lower than its competitors and business cards 200% higher than other printers. Why such a difference? Print shops have a diverse set of equipment, meaning a few local printers will specialize in direct mail, but offer business cards – which are outsourced to the business card printer and vice-versa. Outsourcing costs local retailers a pretty penny in ordering, repacking, liability, and courier charges. This will hike up the price of certain items while the internally printed projects are cheaper. Save yourself some money and do a good amount of price matching on at least 4 to 5 different print shops.
Internet-based printers. If you’re not in a hurry to get your materials in hand, internet printers can save you some money. I have a few of my personal favorites listed:
U Printing. I love U Printing because it allows you to print in low volumes. If you only need 50 corporate brochures (11×17, full color, folded in half), it’ll only cost you $90! This site is great for start-up companies or one-person brokerages.
VisaPrint. I’ve never found a higher quality printer for such low prices. A simple Internet search can bring up additional coupons. I personally use VistaPrint for my business cards, postcards and brochures. Vista Print offers low volumes (as low as 25!) on professionally printed brochures, however they don’t have as many size and finishing options as U Printing.
Print Place. If you need higher volumes of printing, I suggest Print Place. Their customer service is SAD to say the least, but their printing is extremely high quality. Also, stay away from folding the harder card stock. Other printers will use a scoring machine that places an indent in the paper and then they fold cardstock. The additional scoring prevents that feathered, cracked look at the edge. Print Place does not use a scoring machine and your folded cardstock brochures will have that horrible wrinkled edge. Other than that, they provide quality work!
Ace Exhibits. Getting a convention booth or need signage in your lobby? Save yourself some money and let Ace handle the printing and building of your exhibits. You’ll find that Ace has a ton of options and printing for less than half of what the big exhibit builders are offering. The quality is just as good and their customer service is much better than the big guys. The displays are easy to setup, take down, transport, and all the printing is high quality. I have personally used Ace on lots of projects.