Although pro-model inkjet printers are extremely versatile and can be used to produce many different types of photographs, promotional materials, and specialty products, about 30% of photographers who own pro-model inkjet printers continue to outsource some of their inkjet printing. This was one of the findings of an in-depth survey that I.T. Strategies conducted in May of 2010. More than 1,100 photographer-survey participants responded to the question: “Do you outsource inkjet printing?”
When asked about the volume of work they outsourced, 58% of respondents indicated they outsourced 10% or less of their total printing. Only 12% said they outsourced more than 50% of their printing work.
The top seven reasons given for outsourcing were:
- Size (larger or smaller)
- Type of media required
- Need for high volume
- Need for higher quality
- Time constraints
- Pricing issues
- Special finishing
Here are some of the specific reasons respondents gave for outsourcing some of their work:
- For mounting prints and larger prints than my printer can do.
- For printing direct to rigid materials such as Sintra, gatorfoam, and non-traditional materials.
- It is not economically feasible for me to print large wallet-size print orders.
- Because ink is too expensive and I can’t print hundreds of greeting cards with black backgrounds on this printer.
- Consistency of quality. I don’t have to ‘babysit’ large projects.
- I only use an outside commercial print shop when I want a print larger than I can print myself, which is rarely.
- More consistency. My time is limited; I would rather spend it creating images and marketing myself than printing.
- I only have a 24-in. printer, and most of what I sell is 30-45-in. prints.
If a special project comes up that requires you to outsource some of your inkjet printing or finishing work to a print-for-pay provider of wide-format printing, call a LexJet account specialist at 800-453-9538. We can probably suggest companies in your area that have just the type of equipment and experience you need for the job.
LexJet’s customer base includes some of the most well-established providers of large-format printing services in the business. Many of these print-for-pay customers got their start as commercial photo labs. Thus, they are experienced with the type of image quality and service professional photographers expect.
For more information about the I.T. Strategies’ 2010 Photographers Survey, contact Patti Williams at www.it-strategies.com
For details on other findings from the survey read two previous posts we’ve published on the same study: