Marketing · Printing

Customer Print Portal Recommendations - We load templates and customers modify and order directly

Kristi Shadid

August 9th, 2016

Hi All,

Can anyone recommend a low cost customer print portal type of software.  We have templates that we want to upload where customers can drop in their logo or make small copy tweaks to ONLY defined areas.  We then want them to be order the printed materials directly - and pay for them directly.

Any recommendations?
Thanks!

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Marc Riesenberg Creative Leader | Marketer | Customer Experience | Professional Instigator

August 9th, 2016

I've used Marcom Central (http://marcom.com/) in the past. We used it internally for sales departments to customize print assets and Power Point files. It freed up a ton of time for the production team and let the sales team create assets as they needed them (without waiting in a queue).

Dave Shefferman Founder/President at MadeMoments

August 9th, 2016

Staples Business Solutions (which was recently acquired by Taylor Corporation), apparently has a solution that meets some/all of these requirements. 

The downside is that the print production is very costly, and from what I've been told, the production quality and service is inconsistent at best. 

Chasing it upstream, from what I understand, the Staples system is built on Four51's Order-Cloud platform. 

To @John's point, there likely needs to be a programmatic or human review (or possibly both) of uploaded images to ensure sufficient resolution and brightness of the image. 

@John, I'd love your thoughts about print color consistency, assuming @Kristi's templates have a defined color palate (possibly even a PMS spec), and they desire for that color to be consistent, print run after print run.  I've found that the same printer with the same stock and the same art files will end up producing different results in different print runs.  How do you mitigate that?

John OHanlon Owner of Banks Printers

August 9th, 2016

@Dave, the only way to get consistent PMS colours is to have the ink mixed professionally. I have mixed inks over the years for many PMS colours and the results have always been satisfactory, that said some colours are more forgiving than others. Problems arise if one printing firm has mixed a colour and it is not quite right and the customer doesn't notice but expects all future runs to look like the ' wrong' one....it is very difficult to copy a wrong mix you just haven't got a clue what %s have been used!....If it is a big run I invariably order the ink pre-mixed from the manufacturers (Van son for instance) because although it will be more expensive you can guarantee integrity to about 99.9%. One of the biggest problems we see these days is rather than print the job with the PMS colours on separate units the printing firm will convert the PMS colour to CMYK and in some cases the colour is a good match but in other cases it is miles out. The client needs to be shown accurate CMYK proofs (wet proofs if the run is a big one) so they can sign it off and it needs to be made clear the reason for CMYK and exactly how much the client is saving. If you are placing orders for specific colours make sure with the printing firm they are printing the extra colours on a separate unite and not out of CMYK. Kind Regards John Ohanlon

Lorne [LION] Seeking new clients - Practical Solutions in Action

August 9th, 2016

The templates....are they Word?  PDF?  Something else?

Vivek Ghai Entrepreneur, Founder & CEO Panacea Infotect I Startup Enthusiast I Outsourcing

August 9th, 2016

@Kristi Shadid I'm assuming that you are looking out for online customisation software using which business users can upload there logo images in predefined formats e.g. .png, .jpg, etc. And those will be rendered on the template. Users can also edit the templates pre-defined areas. The modified design will be saved in the user account and same will be reflected in the order for print.
You can check similar software at http://182.72.79.154/allin1tool/tools?pid=1

Select template and Business Card product or any other product that you want to check with.

The software is available as Magento extension if your website is in Magento. Else custom integration with your existing website can be done. 

You can find more details about his product at www.idesignibuy.com

You can send me a personal message for further details.

Chris Bunyan Managing Director at Localstars

August 10th, 2016

Kristi - hi - we do that....http://www.localstars.com/ad-platform/ Give me a shout if you would like to take a look to see if it suits your needs. Chris

Axel Meierhoefer Founder of MaxMomentum Institute - we help small & medium sized companies 2x leads & conversions using our unique system

August 9th, 2016

I have used Vista Print and that worked pretty well as long as the client isn't constantly uploading new images (or you negotiate that in the contract)

Nilesh Kapse President,

August 9th, 2016

​Great suggestion Vivek​ Thanks and Regards

Chris Bunyan Managing Director at Localstars

August 10th, 2016

Kristi - hi - we do that....http://www.localstars.com/ad-platform/

Give me a shout if you would like to take a look to see if it suits your needs.

Chris

Nilesh Kapse President,

August 9th, 2016

Dear Kristi, I have been in printing business for well over 35 years and have a lot of experience We can talk and I would like to understand the exact need and can recommend the next steps. If need be we can also build a portal Please call me on 510 386 4030 at anytime or give me a number where I can reach you Thanks and Regards