BLUE RIBBON PRINTING
A Review and Rating of the Best Discount Printing Services
Are you looking for a quality printing service that does full color (four-color) printing at a discount rate? The following online printing services are highly rated based upon price, quality and ease of use. Come to us for all your printing needs.
Choosing an Online Printing Service
It can be difficult knowing what printing service to choose, especially considering how many companies provide printing services online. Consider the following factors when choosing a printing service.
Discount pricing. If you’ve used a local printer or priced local printing services, you will probably notice you can obtain a generous discount by using an online printing service. However, not all printing services are priced evenly. As you can see from the post card price comparison chart above, some printing services charge significantly more than others. This may be due to a variety of factors. Discount printers often save expenses by using a digital printing press and by using a “gang run” printing method. (This is where multiple orders are placed on a large single sheet of paper.) You should be able to get quality results, adequate for most needs, using the recommended printing services. However, if it is important for you to get the highest printing quality, you may want to check the printing process used by the printing service.
Your Printing Needs. Be mindful that certain printing services will be best for certain products, or for certain situations. Whereas > PsPrint.com is highly recommended for post cards and posters, iPrint.com is recommended for business cards and general stationery needs. PrintDirectforLess.com is recommended where you have a rush job, that needs to be done in two-days or less. Ideally, plan well ahead for your printing needs, so you can take full advantage of discount pricing from the various printing services.
Designing the Graphic. Most printing services give you three options: (1) Use an online template, (2) design and upload your own graphic, or (3) have the printing service design custom artwork for you. Depending upon which service you want, it may influence the printer you choose. While most printing services allow you to upload a pre-designed graphic, not all have templates or do custom artwork. You’ll need to visit their site to see what services they offer and decide which company you are most comfortable with. Also keep in mind that some printing services charge you a fee for uploading files, so be sure to look at the fine print.
Proofing your job. Some of the online services allow you to proof your job online, others offer to mail you a proof, while others give you the choice. Some charge a small amount extra for their proofing services. You’ll have to choose the printing service based upon your needs and your budget. We personally like being able to quickly proof the job online and send the job on its way. This is one of the reasons we recommend > PsPrint.com. They have a very nice online editing tool that is easy enough to use for the beginner as well as being sophisticated enough for the the more experienced graphic artist.
Coating. While the decision whether to get coating on your job depends on your situation, a gloss (aqueous, or UV) coating will add durability to your work and make it resistant to the elements. In general, aqueous coating is a lower gloss and can be written upon, while UV coating is high gloss and cannot be written upon. Many printing services charge extra for coating, so make sure to factor that into your pricing. UV coating is a standard feature at > PsPrint.com and is included in their pricing for post cards and posters.
Click here for a full discussion of the differences between aqueous and UV coating.
Shipping. Make sure to factor in shipping charges when you compare prices. Some so-called discount printing services charge a bundle for shipping and handling. Discount printing should also include discount shipping. (Rush jobs are an exception.)