Just about every business needs to get printing done, whether you need business cards, reports, or pamphlets. There are a number of online businesses that specialize in good quality printing services for all your growing business needs. Let’s take a look at the options and break them down, starting with business cards (because everybody needs those.)
One of the biggest names in business cards online is VistaPrint. They’re known the internet over for their free business card promotions, and yes, their services are very cheap. Right now, you can get 250 business cards printed and all you pay for is shipping. The catch is that the cards are branded with the VistaPrint logo and the cards aren’t the greatest quality in the world. You can pay a little extra for better quality and no VistaPrint branding. Premium business cards start at $10 for 250.
Pro: Basic business cards are very cheap.
Cons: Few options for customization. You’re getting the basics, which means you might run into a lot of people with similar-looking, or the same card design.
Now, if you want really high quality, slick business cards with the greatest degree of customization and attractive design, MOO is the way to go. It’s pricey, yes, but you’re paying for quality. The best printing quality, the best customization, and great customer service — in fact, if your business has ten or more employees and you’re getting them all business cards, you can get MOO for Business service, which lands you a dedicated account manager and year-round discounts.
These cards are double-sided, and you can print a different photograph on the back of every card in your pack, so you can tell people you’re giving them one-of-a-kind works of art as a conversation starter, and you can get rounded corners. But for 200 MOO cards, it’s going to cost you $69.99. I should have told you to sit down first.
Pros: Great quality and attractive, customizable design. MOO specializes in business cards. They do very little else.
Between VistaPrint and MOO, there’s OvernightPrints. The quality’s in the middle, the customization is in the middle (you can get them double-sided, with rounded corners) and the prices are quite attractive. For 250 premium double-sided cards, it’s $21.55. I’d give these guys a try.
Pros: Good quality, customizable designs. Relatively inexpensive.
Cons: Not quite as high quality as MOO, not quite as dirt cheap as VistaPrint.
Something to think about: In an Etsy discussion about business cards, one woman said she ordered most of her business cards from OvernightPrints, but ordered a small number of MOO cards to hand out to “extra special people.”
Brochures, Sales Sheets and Pamphlets
When it comes to brochures and pamphlets, VistaPrint’s offerings aren’t the cheapest option around, despite their low price guarantee. One thousand tri-fold brochures from VistaPrint will run you $289.99, while OvernightPrints will get you 1000 for $170.15.
When it comes to known quality, MagCloud has that. They’re owned by HP and their printing quality is fantastic — it’s magazine quality. The thing is, MagCloud doesn’t do tri-fold brochures. Their bread and butter is print-on-demand magazines, so their brochures are essentially magazines without a whole lot of pages. Very appropriate for sales sheets. A four-page magazine-sized brochure/sales sheet costs $0.80. One thousand copies comes out to $600 with the 25% off bulk discount. It’s an expensive proposition, but, again, if you’re going for high quality images and color, it might be worth it to you.
For a good balance of quality and price, I’d go with OvernightPrints again. Their website is pretty close to a one-stop shop for your high quality business printing needs. VistaPrint has a lot more diversity in their product offerings, but their reputation isn’t the most sterling (judging by the number of complaints that turn up in Google searches — however, this may be the price of popularity) nor do they necessarily have the best prices.
Miscellaneous Documents and Presentations
Maybe I missed something, but does VistaPrint not offer plain old document printing? It looks that way. Nor does OvernightPrints or MagCloud or any other business I’ve mentioned in this post so far.
FedEx Office (formerly FedEx Kinkos) to the rescue. They’ll do your document printing on plain white paper online and mail it to you, or you can pick it up at the nearest FedEx location. This is when you don’t need any of the fancy stuff. This is for when you need to hand out an update to the employee rule book — black text on white paper.
FedEx Office also offers brochures and business cards and everything mentioned above. Why didn’t I mention them above? Because much of their printing is outsourced to VistaPrint. Your FedEx Office business cards are from VistaPrint, so in this portion of the post, I’ll be talking about what FedEx Office does that VistaPrint doesn’t do.
While FedEx Office is the best option for your non-fancy printing needs, they also do presentation booklets and manuals, which you might need on your way into a big meeting. They’ll put your pages together in binders, or coil binding. The prices vary, based on the paper quality and your needs, but a full-color 24-page coil-bound presentation comes to a little over $20.
If you need magazine-quality presentation booklets and binding, you’re looking at MagCloud again, but in this case, MagCloud is a cheaper option, with a full-color 24-page perfect-bound presentation coming to a little under $6. MagCloud is definitely my pick for your presentation needs.
I hope this article has been helpful to you. Let us know your experiences with online printing services in the comments! Where did your favorite business cards come from?