Have you noticed how a 500 gram tin of baked beans isn’t double the cost of the 250 gram tin? This is not only because they want to entice us all to buy more baked beans. It’s because the cost to manufacture the 500 gram tin, fill it with beans and deliver it to the supermarket isn’t double the cost of the 250 gram tin. So the consumer gets the saving – and yes, they do get to sell more baked beans in the process.

The same concept applies to printing. Over my many years in the printing industry, I’m still surprised with how many people still question the small cost difference between 500 and 1,000 business cards. I’ll give them a price of $240 for 1,000 business cards and they reply with, “Okay then, I’ll have 500 cards for $120.” I reply with “Sorry, it doesn’t work like that.”, and then go into my well scripted and long-winded explanation about print pricing, in an attempt to convince them that I’m not trying to rip them off.

So below is the abridged version of that script, which most people do accept.

When a client orders business cards, the standard costs such as design, press set up, guillotining, and packaging are the same, regardless of whether you order 250, 500 or 1,000 business cards. The only cost difference is the card stock, plus a small amount of press labour. This can sometimes translate to a saving of just a few dollars.

The price bracket phenomenon goes for most print products ordered in smaller quantities, including brochures, stickers, magnets, invoice books and letterheads. However, the savings quickly diminish when we’re comparing 10,000 and 20,000 brochures. For jobs of this size, the paper and press labour cost are obviously a high component, so when you double large quantities to even larger quantities, then the cost will almost double.

So in a nutshell, doubling the order will usually result in a cost saving for you. Of course a lot of people will only want the minimum, especially if they think their details may change, such as address, phone number or email. However, if that’s not the case, I suggest you order more. I once had a client who took nearly 10 years to give out 100 business cards before re-ordering. That’s 10 per year, or less than one per month. Think about it. Printed material has no value unless you hand it out, so get rid of them and prosper. Please don’t be frugal with something that’s bringing in business for you… and we’ll see you again for the re-print.

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