When purchasing a new document, be it a book, journal, or a notebook, we often aren’t paying attention to how it was made. Instead, the primary focus is usually on the functionality of the item. You may pick it up and turn the pages, perhaps even pull the front page all the way around the back to see how the binding holds up. Even if you aren’t directly thinking about the binding, it is often the reason you choose one notebook or journal over the other.
For that very reason, the document binding is one of the most important parts of a product. A document’s binding provides a finished and professional look, and allows for a more functional product than something like a three-ring binder or a stapled binding. When thinking about offering document binding services, or even if you are already offering them, there are five tips to think about that will optimize your products.
Producers using binding machines in New Zealand need to be able to offer a variety of bindings. This means they must own or have access to the machinery, as there are several binding options currently on the market. Some of the options that a growing business should consider are the plastic comb binder, wire binding, fastback binding, calendar binding, and Velo binding.
- Plastic comb binding uses plastic spines with rings that fit through punched holes in the pages. The binding machine pulls open the plastic rings off the spine and then punches the pages in smaller bundles and inserts the plastic comb into the holes. This is often a manual process and can take some time, but is typically a more cost-effective option.
- Wire binding is often seen on notebooks you buy at the store. With several different varieties, wire binding allows you to open a page all the way around the binding and lay flat. Wire binding works similar to plastic comb binding; holes are punched through the pages and the wire binding is wrapped through the holes and closed manually or by the machine.
- Fastback binding refers to a taped and glued binding, often what you see on regular hardback books. This is a durable method that should last for quite some time.
- Calendar binding can come in multiple forms. Often, wire binding is used so the pages can flip 360 degrees over, but stitched bindings are also used depending on the type of calendar
- Finally, Velo binding, often used in textbooks and training manuals, uses a mixture of punched holes and adhesive to create the binding.
All of these options serve a different purpose, and the more variety that you can provide will increase your customer base.
- Consumer’s needs
The needs of a consumer are the top reason why variety is important to producers. Consumers are used to, and expect options when looking at any product.
Having an in-person consultation with the consumer can be extremely helpful. It can sometimes be difficult to determine exactly what the consumer is looking for if your communication is over the phone or email. By bringing the customer in to the store, you can provide examples and allow the customer to really see their available options instead of researching online or using what they have always used in the past. Paperquip, a leading digital printing and document binding business in New Zealand offers several different contact options, including social media and a physical address to be more accessible to customers.
Digital printing has grown quickly in the modern world, as convenience and saving time have become more important. Being able to offer high quality digital printing along with similar quality binding will bring in many different types of customers and expand your business. At the same time, being able to offer offset printing will allow you to keep both types of customers. An easy way to see the advantages of both digital and offset printing can be found here.
Offset printing is still quite common for high volume jobs, as it retains a high quality and is less expensive when done in bulk. Find out what your customer base is looking for in their printing and binding needs to help you make the decision about what you will offer.
- Binding in bulk
Just like any product, making a lot of the same thing will cut down on costs dramatically. Make sure your machinery is up to date and working efficiently, so you can easily cater towards the customers looking for bulk orders.
Another option is to automate as much of the binding process as possible. If your business is not currently set up to be automated, it may cost more initially to buy necessary equipment, but will save time and be profitable in the future.
- Offer specialty binding
Hand binding, while a much longer and tedious process, can be a way to differentiate yourself from competitors. Before machines began to bind documents in bulk, most documents were hand sewn by a professional bookbinder. By offering these services, even when a customer is providing their pages via digital printing, you can expand the materials you use such as cloth or leather, and give a distinctive edge to the document. Take a look at this tutorial for help with hand sewing your bindings. It is a good idea to keep a range of materials on hand for each type of binding offered.
- Cross train
Finally, the last tip for your digital printing and document binding business is to make sure your employees are well trained, and know how to operate all machinery proficiently. This way you’ll always have an employee on the schedule who can perform any task, and can assist any customer who calls or walks in the door.
These five tips will help set your business up for success in the short run and the long run, and easily distinguish the business from the competition.