Cost & Material Control
Our experts at Progress Printing Plus are committed to assisting our customers in making wise choices that increase their ROI. We provide ongoing research and industry evaluation to determine cost-saving opportunities through purchasing, paper selection, and print management.
Progress has tremendous leverage and purchasing power because we see value in maintaining strong relationships in the industry and faithful effort to operate fiscally responsible. Our attention to detail allows our team to make strategic, on-going recommendations to our customers for choosing the best paper, trim size, and page count—greatly affecting their bottom line.
- Highly trained purchasing department with many years of sophistication and experience
- Strong purchasing power with over $20,000,000 of paper purchased per year
- Utilize “laser beam” purchasing for pricing negotiation on each grade of paper
- Discount ALL bills to remain in superior standings with our supplier partners
- Maintain solid relationships with our mill and merchant partners
- Purchase in bulk to minimize freight costs
Brightness/Grade - Coated paper ranges in brightness and grade from a #1 sheet (typically 95 bright) to a #5 sheet (typically 70-72 bright). When considering which grade of paper to use for your catalog or publication, it is important to consider your product line, your design, and your competition. Choosing paper that offers a nice balance of brightness is critical for any product line in which color reproduction is highly important (food, fashion, jewelry). Ask your sales representative to assist you in choosing the paper that is right for your project.
House Sheets - Most printers have what they refer to as a “House” sheet – one that has tested well on their presses and bindery equipment, works well with the color curves and inks that they use, and can be bought in significant tonnages. Ask to see a paper dummy (a blank, folded, and trimmed mock-up at your page size and page count) of your catalog on a house sheet to see if taking advantage of what is likely to be a great, negotiated paper rate is a potential option.
Paper Markup - Ask your Progress sales representative to explain the paper rate, and question the true market value of the paper. It is important not to assume that because another printer buys more paper, that they are charging you less for it. The paper mills charge all printers the same rate for paper, so it should be easy to compare tonnages between one printer and another.
Page Size - Every printer has an optimum trim size that limits paper waste. Allow your Progress representative to help you explore page sizes that will allow you to mail at the reduced “automated letter” rate offered by the USPS. These include Slim Jim and Digest formats and will require tabbing the piece, but the reward is a typical savings of eight cents per unit.
Page Count - The total quantity of your print run will determine the number of press runs needed and which press it will run on, due to each press having optimum page counts. Limiting this number ultimately saves you time and money. Typically, page counts that are divisible by 32 are the most economical, followed by 16, then 8, and then 4. Whenever possible, use a page count that is divisible by at least 16.
Press Equipment - Our web presses have faster makereadies, tighter registration/color control through closed-loop color, and faster run/cut and fold rates.
Order Forms - There are many cost-saving options our Progress team can provide. One option is to stop printing a separate internal order form and replace it by allocating a center page of your catalog for ordering information. If you choose to give up the self-mailer aspect of the separate order form, Progress can still ink jet the address and code numbers on this center page, which can then be mailed by buyers in their own envelope to place an order. Many catalogs now drive the prospective buyer to either call or go to the website to place an order. It makes sense to consider eliminating the separate, self-mailing order form, which can easily average almost two cents per unit.