Printing is one of those necessities that has been in demand since the period of the renaissance and will never go extinct. Therefore, it's an excellent business idea for whoever wants to begin entrepreneurship in the business world. Not only that, but in today’s world, people rely on advanced technology. Due to this reason, starting a printing business doesn't require much human resources and investment.
Most of the printing equipment is digital and easy to operate. Having said that, to begin a business, you must have prior knowledge and preparation to aspire to success, even if it's a simple printing business. Hence, this article is dedicated to giving a complete guideline on how to start a printing business from scratch.
Let's get started!
What is Printing Business?
Printing is a service-oriented business. The printing service provider utilizes printing machines and equipment to bring artworks to life. And, with the help of technology, now printing is not limited to papers only. It can be done on various materials, including silk, banner, ceramic, wood, glass, and many more. The demand for printing is so high that people use it for personal use and business promoting purposes.
Business Terms You Need to Know Before Starting A Printing Business
Before I talk about how to start a printing business, you need to be familiar with some of the terms related to printing. Below are the three basic terms that are essential for printing
Pre-press is the stage before printing. The process of pre-press includes graphic design, proofreading, color separation, lithography, paper cutting, and so on.
After the pre-press is ready, it's time for the press to complete printing. Through the press, one can understand the mistakes and things that need to be edited. However, press involves cost; hence it's better to focus on the pre-press stage more carefully. Also, to check the print quality and errors, you can test the print in the press stage.
When you are finally done with the press, the post-press stage determines the finished look of the printed item. There are numerous ways you can deal with printed material, such as laminating, binding, framing, and so on.
What Are the Things You Need to Start a Printing Business?
Though the printing business doesn't require much labor like in ancient times, it still needs some good investment, to begin with. Whether you are starting a small or big-scale printing business, below are some of the things that will involve expenses.
Employee salaries, etc.
Step-by-Step Guide on How to Start A Printing Business
Printing is not just another business idea that you can begin with capital right away. Though it doesn't require much workforce these days due to digitization, you still need prior knowledge and experience in this field beforehand. Therefore, below are the basic steps that will help you follow as a guideline when you are opting for a printing business.
Step 1: Market Research
The first and foremost thing you need to do is market research, and it will determine the demand for the service you intend to provide. You will be glad to know that according to statistics, the demand for the printing business worldwide is increasing rapidly. So, you should also understand the demand of printing in you local area.
Step 2: Prepare Customer Profile
After the market research, you can narrow it down to who your targeted customers are. In terms of the printing business, the potential clients could be local businesses, organizations, graphic designers, students, and so on. For instance, if you are in a popular commercial spot in East London, then the potential clients could be from educational institutions, retailers, local organizations, stationery shops, and so on. If you are offering the service online, then the clients can be from anywhere in London.
Hence, in the customer profile, you must also determine the promotional offers, discounts, payment methods, payment terms, and convenient customer service.
Step 3: Identifying the Printing Niche
In the printing business, finding the correct niche according to your proficiency and budget is important. Instead of being involved in all types of printing, you can choose to go for pre-press, press, or post-press. However, if you are planning to have a big investment, then you can go for all three.
However, for beginners with small investments, the potential printing niches are Offset Litho printing, digital color separation printing, large format printing, screen printing, sign printing, t-shirt printing, lamination, and finishing.
Step 4: Get to Know the Printing World
Printing involves color and versatile processing. Therefore, it's important to have in-depth knowledge about color separation, color match, and recognition. Moreover, you also need to master the process of CMYK. CMYJ refers to cyan, magenta, yellow and black, which are the primary colors in printing.
Step 5: Research Business Material
When you are doing research, it's always important to keep an eye on the competitors. You must stay up to date about the equipment they use. Because printing is ever-evolving and new technologies keep emerging every year. Therefore, you need to be aware and stay updated about the latest technologies.
So, always research the trending and upcoming printing technologies and what the other printing companies offer. This way, you can also find out their shortcomings, and you can include them in your service.
Besides, there are versatile printing machines available depending on size and quality. Some of the trending printing machines are 201 Impression Machine, Cutting Machine, Kord Machine, Direct Image Printing Machine, etc.
Step 6: Prepare a Business Plan
As you are ready with all the information and knowledge about the printing world, it's time to make a comprehensive plan. The plan will be about setting an objective and strategies that will help you achieve the desired success. Therefore, in your business plan, you can begin with short-term and long-term objectives.
Then, have an executive summary; document the data from market research, SWOT analysis, team building, marketing plan, operational strategy, financing, etc.
Step 7: Ensure Funding
The printing business needs handsome capital. In that case, if you cannot finance yourself, you must secure a source of funding. So, for funding, you can look for investors or get a loan from banks. Remember, to get funding from external sources, you must have a strong business plan. It will help you grant support for new business.
Step 8: Finding a Good Business Location
You may offer a printing service online, but having a physical space is important. For this, you need to have a good location to set up the equipment, and printing is in high demand. If the location is convenient for the clients, you can be certain about the success.
Therefore, the selection of location also impacts the investment. For instance, if you have a moderate budget, but you want to establish a printing business attaining success in London, then Canary Wharf is an ideal spot.
It's a popular commercial area in London where retail shops, local businesses, institutions, and stationery shops play a major role in the economy. Similarly, it would be best if you found a place where printing demand is dominant and will expand in the future.
Step 9: Register Your Company
The next step is to register the company. You need to decide on a suitable yet attractive business name and register the company at the Corporate Affairs Commission. Having your company registered secures credibility and trustworthiness among the clients. It will also help them to visit when customers want to place orders physically.
Step 10: Recruit Skilled Employees
Once your business setup is complete, it's time to make a skilled team. The good thing about the printing business is you don't need many employees. Therefore, you can easily recruit highly skilled and experienced technicians who can use digital printing equipment.
Having said that, you must have a highly proficient graphic designer to create artwork and finalize the design. In addition, a trained machine operator can understand, operate, and ensure the maintenance of the machines.
Step 11: Promote Your Company
As your business setup is complete, it's time to do the branding. Without business promotion, the clients will not know what amazing service you provide. Therefore, while you are focusing on selling the service, pay attention to marketing and advertising.
For business promotion, you can use social media, advertisement, collaboration, partnership, sending brochures/ flyers/ posters, referral marketing, television advertisement, email marketing, and so on.
To sum up, the printing business is one of the businesses that will always be in demand. If you are interested in opting for business in this sector, then go ahead. It's the best opportunity to establish your business and attain a profit.
Hopefully, our guide on how to start a printing business will help you to start a printing shop. To help initiate the printing business, the detailed guideline will help you start from scratch. Moreover, it would help if you were updated about ongoing trends, and new technologies and worked hard. As you are enriched with knowledge about the printing world and understand what consumers want, nobody can stop you from achieving success in this amazing business field!