Web2print is the online connection between a print company and its customers, and the technology should help to solidify this relationship, not hinder it. Print companies offer their services online in response to their customers’ needs and buying trends. As web2print becomes more integrated into a print company’s day-to-day business, it becomes a main channel for interacting with a customer. A key to the strategy for implementing web services is involving the customer as much as possible, since the customer’s use and acceptance of the ordering portal is critical for its success. Print companies should research the types of products and services that will be helpful to customers in the specific target markets they serve, and not add too many products too quickly. Print companies must analyze the types of products their customer needs, and plan how a streamlined workflow will create efficiencies in its operations. Finally, a pilot phase to assess both accuracy of the storefront and user experience is important. To ensure continued customer satisfaction, print companies should be prepared to make ongoing improvements once the site goes live. System integration with print companies’ internal processes is also ongoing, as efficiencies and production enhancements are realized. The print industry continues to evolve and a successful implementation of a web2print portal will help print companies keep up with this evolution and stay in front of the competition.
Questions to consider after completing this chapter:
- How would you describe web2print and the technology involved?
- How would you describe e-commerce and how web2print utilizes it?
- What are the benefits of using web2print to a company and it customers?
- What are the strategic steps in creating a web2print system?
- What types of products can be offered through a web2print system?
- In what ways can a web2print system be integrated into a production workflow?
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