What is Web-to-Print, How Does it Work, and Why is it Important?

Not sure what W2P is and how it can help your business? Here's everything you need to know about the basics of W2P before you get started!

There is no denying life is lived almost entirely online nowadays. Just about anything can be found within a few clicks and has next-day shipping attached. People love being able to get what they need from the comfort of their own home, especially with the pandemic we continue to face. If people can’t access the information they need within a few clicks, they simply don’t want it.

This newer way of life has many businesses adapting to meet the needs of their customers. Convenience has always been essential for business, and giving customers a way to shop 24/7 without needing to go from one location to another is the best way to do it. 

Web-to-Print opened the door for any printing needs to be done from remote locations without direct assistance, otherwise known as remote publishing. Which means printing companies have been able to grow their business beyond their own four walls and their customers are able to create their own products on their own terms.

What is Web-to-Print?

It’s important to have a strong understanding before trying to dive in too deep so let’s start with the basics. Web-to-print, commonly referred to as W2P, is an online service that opens the world of printing to customers through an ecommerce storefront. Basically, Web to Print is able to take your business and turn it into an electronic store where your customers can work with you completely online. 

Web-to-Print has been around for about 20 years so it’s not a new concept but has become a very crucial part of the printing industry. An online presence is extremely important because without it, your business does not exist in the eyes of the modern world.  

Web-to-Print puts the work into the customers hands by giving them the tools they need to create their own projects. 

As previously mentioned, it’s all about convenience. Everyone is used to being able to get loads of information within a click of a button and Web-to-Print allows for that to happen by taking everything you have to offer and putting it in one place that can be accessed at any time. How can you make doing business with you the easiest way possible? 

How Does It Work?

Customers are able to create their own products online. It’s everything your business can offer them but done completely online instead. 

Customers can choose their own products, design and edit them using the editing tools on the site, receive an estimate immediately, and then place the order. From there, the system receives the order along with the online payment and presents the products that are ready to be printed. Web-to-Print gives the customer the online independence they are used to having, and the printer (you guys) a more efficient way of doing business. 

They would have a catalog of products to choose from and then have the ability to upload their own artwork, design the layout, edit the details, all by using the editing tools on the site. 

From there, the site will generate an estimate for them automatically depending on the features and quantity that they chose. They can then pay and submit their order without ever having to leave their home or ask for help. It’s the magic of printing completely unassisted. Then it’s just about fulfilling the order and shipping it out to its desired destination.

Web to Print not only includes the customer, but puts them in charge of the process of creation. They are able to do the work themselves in their own time and space.

Why Is It Important?

The benefits of Web-to-Print are clear – you are able to do more business while your customers are able work more efficiently with you. 

Web-to-Print can be used for either B2C (business to customer) or B2B (business to business). It’s all about marketing your products in the best way for your customers. Web to Print is important for your customers because it will show how easy it is to do business with you. 

They want a stress free experience and being able to have control over their own projects while having easy to use tools will give them a good feeling about your business. But giving them a self-sufficient way of working isn’t good enough on its own, you need to still have a personal touch to make your business stand out from the competition. 

This comes from the overall design and feel of your site. Web-to-Print might take out the ‘face to face’ interaction with your customers but it doesn’t need to remove the personality of your business. Not sure where to start when it comes to developing your online voice? No worries! Stay tuned for future posts where we will go into more detail on how to achieve that for your business.

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