As small business owners we have plenty of printing needs from business cards for our next networking event, to brochures of our services, to thank you cards for past clients. Having a printer you can rely on is always helpful. Ideally I love working with small local printers, but sometimes we need the convenience of an online printer, and other times we just need the most affordable option.
Over the past few years I’ve tried out a handful of different online printers. The one I choose depends on a few factors, budget usually being the first one and quality the second. If you're a small business owner looking for the best options to print your marketing materials, read on. All of the printers below will ship to you wherever you are.
Everyone's heard of Vistaprint, so it almost feels unnecessary to mention them, but the truth is you really can't beat the prices. They also offer a large range of products. My experience with them has been hit or miss. I've received some things that have turned out well, and others that looked low-quality.
The main reason I’m including them on this list is because of their customer service. If you aren't happy with the quality they will often refund you (usually in credit) or reprint for you free of charge. If you're on a tight budget this is hands-down your best option. If you're ordering from them be sure to check out their special offers. I've never ordered from them without some kind of discount.
Moo is another popular one that you may have heard of and is probably my favorite non-letterpress printer. Moo has great quality all around and the prices are not bad. They don't offer as many products as Vistaprint, but what they do offer is great. They also offer specialty printing methods like gold foil and spot gloss. Their luxe business cards are beautiful and will definitely have people thinking you spent much more on them than you did. For $15 off your first shoot me an email and I can send you a coupon code.
Alphagraphics are located all over the country, but you can submit a print request online. This printer is different then the others mentioned so far. With the other printers you upload your files online and immediately place your order. With Alphagraphics you have to send them your file and specifications to get a custom quote. This is especially helpful if you want to order something in a non-standard size. The prices are a little higher than the other printers mentioned so far, but the quality and customer service are worth it.
The next two are runners-up simply because I haven’t used them myself. I have ordered paper samples from both and plan to try them out in the future.
I just discovered this one through an online search and am glad I did. Their printing options are very impressive. Compared to some of the printers above you can create far more customized products. They offer everything from laser cutting, to scoring and folding options. They even provide variable data personalization (i.e. business cards with different info for each employee). They also offer direct mailing services, blind shipping, and PMS color matching which are great features to help promote your business and maintain brand integrity. Their prices vary drastically because of the customizations available, but overall the prices seem competitive.
This online printer offers a wide range of products and sizes, including large format, such as posters and banners. Based on the sample pack I received the quality seems great. One downside is that their minimum order for some items is kind of high. They also have surprisingly high shipping charges, although if you live in LA you can pick up in person.
Almost all of these printers offer free sample packs that you can order from their website. Grab some for yourself so that when your next printing need arises you're ready to go.
Know of any good printers that I didn't include in the line up? Have printing questions? Comment or ask below!