Technology is at the forefront of Australian retail, from point of sales systems to mobile apps for customer loyalty, generating business value for retail store owners and customers alike. While most businesses have focused their investment on customer-facing activities, the opportunities to invest in operational cost-saving technologies are often overlooked. One such operational cost that receives less attention is printing costs because it often gets sidelined to the category of general stationery costs.

The majority of retail businesses require a large amount of printing for back office tasks so the ability to quickly print out invoices and receipts, name tags, stickers and other labels shouldn’t be underestimated. Studies have also shown that while digital might be the best way to attract attention, print has a longer imprint on memory and is therefore more likely to stimulate an actual response.

So, print definitely has a place in your retail business – but how well are you managing its cost effectiveness?

Quiet, creeping costs

Given how quick and easy it is to use a modern printer, it’s also easy to neglect their costs.

Particularly when weighed up against your major overheads, what difference does a bit of toner on paper make?

Well, that depends on how much you’re using. But many businesses would be surprised just how frequently they use their printers for basic admin and on-the-floor purposes, as well as to stay on top of payroll and accounts.

Then you’ve got advertising uses, such as producing newsletters and pamphlets, or simply giving the instore promotions a bit more polish and professionalism.

Add in the downtime brought about by paper jams and other unexpected but inevitable inconveniences, the cost of servicing your machine, the price the power consumed and the clutter factor of simply having a big, bulky machine in a small office, and it starts to add up.

It’s not a cost you can eliminate but it’s certainly one you can better manage.

A simple plan

So, what’s the solution? Simple: managed print services.

The aforementioned growing use of digital technology means we’re living in the era of big data, which provides a wealth of information on how to optimise your business printing.

And a print consultant can help you select the right strategy and software to actually take advantage of this data. They can provide you a detailed breakdown of what your printing costs truly are, and therefore provide options on how you can start to tighten your belt.

Perhaps you’re printing documents such as payslips in colour, or failing to take advantage of double-sided printing – your consultant can help you implement a business-wide print strategy that will reduce costs by simple methods.

Furthermore, with the right software, you can automate vital processes – such as when you’ll need a toner top-up or a replacement part – meaning that downtime is virtually eliminated.

Set, forget, save!

Overall, these services are a simple fix that you can virtually set and forget. It’s the best way to ensure you continue to reap the benefits that print demonstrably brings to your business, while eliminating the hidden costs that can make a serious difference to your bottom line.

Knowing that you need to manage printing costs is the first step, the next step is to talk to one of our consultants to find the right solution for you.

So how can we help?