Compared to printing companies that produce individual printed matter such as business reports or annual reports, online printing companies offer very affordable prices. But this is at the expense of paper selection, finishing (like with lacquers and lamination, it can stand out from the crowd and give a high-quality impression), and further processing.
Customers who already use online printing companies know that the risk of being dissatisfied with the print result is exceptionally high. In a pinch, however, smaller printed matter can be reprinted cheaply.
That is why there are still good reasons that speak for a “normal” print shop despite the process standard offset printing (PSO) – which ensures the quality of production from data generation to the print result:
Possibility of the client to have fine adjustments made directly on the printing machine or to receive a press proof created on the edition printing machine.
This is especially important if the annual report is printed on natural paper, which cannot be adequately checked in advance with a proofing device.
Ask for a made-up or folded dummy from the printed sheets (“hang-up”) before further processing begins. In the event of errors, individual print sheets can be reprinted.
Companies that are obliged to disclose must comply with legal regulations on publication – or the press conference or general meeting cannot be postponed. If there are problems because you may not deliver data on time, you will know exactly where to call.
So that the price advantage does not become a boomerang
It requires a lot of know-how and the purchase of professional software to create printable data and not run the risk of annoying mistakes that the entire print run ends up in the waste paper.
Here is what to look for when printing your publication online:
- Evaluation: How is the printing company evaluated in forums or social networks?
- Flexibility: Can you put together different formats, types of paper, grammage, and finishes individually?
- Data check: Is the data check free of charge? Or at least come with a transparent surcharge?
- Preview: Is there a detailed preview available for you to review after the data has been uploaded?
- Personal contact: Do you have the opportunity to contact us directly by phone or email if you have any questions?
- Guarantee: Does the printing company guarantee the consistent quality of its print products? How does she deal with complaints?
- Speed: Is there an option for “express printing” or overnight delivery?
- Payment invoice: Do I get the details of what I paid for?
Tips for printing print products such as annual reports or brochures
Of course, you must choose your online printing company carefully. But you too can do a lot in advance to ensure that your annual report is printed smoothly:
- Due to the binding, the number of pages must be divisible by 4 – better divisible by 8.
- Printable data can hardly be reliably created with Word since high-resolution images (300 dpi with a reproduction ratio of 1: 1) and vector graphics (EPS or ai) cannot be integrated well. The line break can also change.
- All fonts used must be integrated into the print PDF or broken down into paths.
- Spot colors, unique colors, and other finishes are to be created uniformly in all files, i.e., in the cover and inside.