As stated by Imaging Spectrum, “As a business owner, your company must operate efficiently.” After all, lost time is lost money, so the last thing you need is wasted time due to inefficient operations. and
Every startup company has been there: you try to save money, so you don’t upgrade your printer, so you lose hours of precious time due to malfunctions, software glitches, and maintenance issues. Finally, you decide to get rid of your old unit.
Purchasing a printer for your business is a savvy move but navigating the hundreds of available options can be overwhelming. How do you wade through the models, makes, and pricing? Read on for essential steps and qualities to consider when choosing the best printer for your business.
The first thing to determine is the office size your printer needs to support. A business of five will have different needs than a company of fifty. Your office size determines how much use your printer will receive.
Why is this important?
If you purchase a big-business machine when you are a small company, you’ll have more power and features than you need; you’ll lose money in your purchase. On the other hand, using a small business printer for a large business will wear out the unit quickly and leave you and your employees frustrated. Considering the size of your company when choosing a printer will reduce frustration in the long run.
After you have determined the size of your company and the right size printer for your company the next step you should take is to write out a list of must-have printer features. The ability to scan, copy, and fax, in addition to WiFi and Bluetooth capability, are standard on most printers.
So, what other options could you be considering?
- Speed of Printing
- Remote Uploading and Printing
- Paired Apps
- Emailing and Texting Projects
- Length and Coverage of Warranty
- Black and White vs. Color
- Print Quality
As much as you may want the latest and greatest printer, it’s crucial to establish a budget. Printers can quickly run into the multiple thousands. Setting a budget will help you narrow down your selection to only printers you can afford. Out of those printers, you should select the one with features that fit your office and keep you on track financially. Avoid spending outside of your budget just to get an extra feature that may not be quintessential to your business’ efficiency.
Include how much you expect to spend on toner refills and paper each month on top of the amount you are willing to spend on the unit itself. You have to consider more than just the initial investment when it comes to printers.
Size of Paper
Are you looking for a printer that only handles 8.5×11” documents? Or do you need an option that allows you to print poster-sized jobs or irregular sized projects? Be sure your printer of choice can take care of all printing needs your office regularly encounters. Consider the departments or groups that will be utilizing the printer frequently and ask about what kinds of printing they would like to do or frequently printed on your old unit. This will allow you to make an informed decision based on current printing needs.
Pages Per Month
Determining how many pages per month your business expects a printer to produce will also help narrow down your options. A small-business printer won’t work for a company of two-hundred employees. Determine how much output you expect the printer to handle and purchase accordingly. Make an informed decision about the burden you will be putting on the new unit you are looking to purchase based on problems you have encountered in the past or based on your plans for future growth.
Cartridge Compatibility and Capability
If you’re on a tight budget, find a printer with compatible non-branded cartridges. Purchasing non-branded cartridges can save hundreds of dollars on toner expenses. Also, look for the average number of pages per cartridge. You’ll want to factor this number into your monthly costs. If your current printer averages ten thousand sheets of paper before you need to replace the cartridge, look for a printer in the same range. The lower the expected page count, the higher your long-term cost.
If you’ve experienced printer malfunctions in the past, you know how frustrating the process of diagnosing the problem and finding a solution can be. Most printers get used heavily. Even small businesses run thousands of pages through their printers. Having a warranty on your printer can help you work with greater confidence, knowing malfunctions are covered. This is an area where shelling out a few more dollars can be well worth it. Some companies offer specialized or extended warranties, or warranties that offer certified inspection on site from a company technician. Leaving room in your overall budget may be worth it for the benefit of increased peace of mind.
Make Your Purchase
Printers come in a vast array of shapes, sizes, functions, and add-ons. It’s essential to choose a printer that can handle the needs of your office and employees. Establishing a budget and determining key requirements for your new piece of office equipment will help you make the best decision for your company. If you follow these tips you’ll be able to make an informed decision that keeps you on-target for your budget and production needs.