What do you think would be the post-pandemic situation?
Many believe that industries would be in the recovering phase. Getting back to things that were in 2019 would be challenging. However, the fact is that we won’t be going back to previous norms. We would be emerging with new technologies and possibilities.
This change would be reflected in every industry, including print. Futuristic solutions – digitalization will replace all the processes that include human touch, face-to-face interaction, and time and labor.
It is obvious looking at the simple fact that everyone is working from their home. eCommerce is flourishing, and globalization is taking center stage. Even print businesses realize that having an omni-channel solution such as a web to print storefront is the need of the hour. They know the challenges of traditional methods and the benefits of leveraging AI, IoT, and other high technologies.
Here’s how we can collaborate in the post-pandemic world:
1. Artificial Intelligence and IoT
Thanks to the pandemic, we’ve learnt to do business with little to no human labor. Further, AI and IoT are accelerating the digital transformation. AI-led smart printers are automating the processes, thereby saving resources from being wasted.
You can combine AI and IoT to provide personalization, predict printer maintenance, paper usage, etc. With sensors, you can know when ink needs replacement. In case of breakdown, AI can reroute your print jobs to another printer, reducing your efforts and time.
In the world of AI and IoT, you can add security to your print jobs by defining role-based access.
To be future-ready, you need to provide unique solutions/services. And what could be better than personalization? A personalized t-shirt, card, shoe, mug, and everything else. Personalization is not new, but in 2021, we would see it growing like wildfire.
As a print service provider, you can make the most out of it. You can integrate different product designer tools like Card Design Software for cards and provide personalization. Instead of banking on one product, you can expand your product range and offer customization. It will definitely boost sales and increase revenue margins. However, for that, you would need a designer tool. Make sure to choose the right one.
3. 3D Printing and Cloud Printing
Till now, it was all about a 2D print or an ordinary printer that prints the designs in black and white or colored. 3D images were a separate niche. But it won’t be the same now. Now, 3D printers are available at affordable prices. That means more and more businesses would leverage 3D printing. You can embrace it and provide industry-specific customers with 3D prints. Let me tell you that 3D prints are a technology that will stay for years.
In addition to this, you would see the increase in the demand for cloud printing. The in-store employees and servers would be cut with cloud-based printer solutions. You can use it if you want to run a business that doesn’t demand physical availability.
Instead, you can speed up your work by accessing the printer while on the go. This way, you can conveniently manage your print orders and deliver more.
4. Web to Print Storefront
Ecommerce has already revolutionized everything. We could see brick-and-mortar stores transforming into e-stores. The demand for online shopping is sky-rocketing. Every industry, including the print industry, can benefit from the potential of eCommerce solutions.
If you want to be future-ready, you should have an e-store where customers can design and order their prints anytime. You can bring in a web to print storefront that enables you to manage your customers’ orders, automate print jobs, and lets you provide customers the freedom to design their own products.
See, the new normal is actually the digital era. Here, you will need a solution that could help you run your business 24*7 and enhance your customers’ experience.
5. Print on Demand
Personalization and print-on-demand is trending. Customers want every product designed according to their requirements. Many eCommerce businesses are leveraging these trends to make a comeback and be the champion.
As a print product supplier, you can utilize this trend too. You can partner with different e-Commerce businesses and provide custom products. For example, you can partner with a wholesaler and help them with custom t-shirt designs.
If you want, you can even sell your products, but you would need a budget for that. With print-on-demand, you can expand your print services to different industries. The more orders you get, the better profits you will make.
Besides, you would get a knack for different industries, customer demands, and the market. All this would prepare you for the future.
We are already witnessing the effect of a pandemic on the world. And to avoid another global environmental condition striking us down, more eco-friendly solutions are coming up.
Many industries are taking the initiative to reduce the impact on the environment. For example, no plastic, low carbon-printing solutions, etc.
Soon, it would be a must-have. The awareness among customers is increasing, and they would likely prefer eco-friendly service providers. So, if you don’t want to get out of the race, look out for eco-friendly solutions like low carbon-printers, digitizing everything (no paper) etc.
7. Laser Cutting
Laser cutting stands as the second major production technique trending throughout 2021. You can use laser cutting for accurate cuts on any stock to reach the final correct finished size. It can also create designs on holiday cards and invitations. This cutting method allows printers to accurately outline even the most delicate designs, like the accurate shape of leaves. It can also create a unique textured effect. When coupled with gold or colored foil, laser cutting surely provides a beautiful final product.
8. Digital Marketing
Digital marketing is listed among one of the most effective forms of advertising available. The commercial printing companies that offer digital marketing services are more likely to increase revenue in order to remain competitive in the market. One digital campaign has the power to reach more than millions of prospects. Social media ads and paid promotions reach targeted viewers of all ages. This can shoot your engagement levels to the peak. Digital marketing services include website hosting services with numerous other products and services. As per the forecasts, the printing companies that offer podcast creations and email marketing like services are likely to grow their sustainability throughout 2021.
The pandemic had a positive and negative impact on the world. Where some businesses flourished, others had to shut down. However, the improvements and advancements in technology didn’t stop. It overcame the shortcomings of traditional approaches with digital solutions.
Looking at the print industry, web to print storefront, smart printers, and IoT-managed processes are revolutionizing what we would have called “the best slow approaches in 2019”.
The new normal is an emerging phase. Digitization, and automation would transform the industries into a futuristic solution. Learn what it means for the print industry.
Author Bio: Mr. Pratik Shah is Creative Head of Brush Your Ideas, a Web-to-Print technology solution offering custom product design software and Web-to-Print Storefront Solutions. He has been giving his valuable tips and suggestions about Product Design Tool