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Print Procurement in 2021

What’s ahead for print suppliers and procurers in 2021? As usual, no one knows what will happen in the future, but it’s useful to take stock of the market forces potentially affecting your business goals. In the print industry, analysts foresee continued challenges as well as bright spots in 2021. As a print buyer, awareness of these challenges and opportunities can help you get the most from your print budget.

Print Trends in 2021

The stronger segments for print suppliers will continue to be direct mail and labels/packaging, according to analysts. Printers also are eyeing these trends, some of which print buyers will share an interest in:

  • Print customers’ security needs: Print buyers expect vendors to protect the personal information of buyers’ clients as well as protect company information from competitors a vendor may be serving.
  • Personalization: Printers and distributors must be able to handle the complexity of personalized marketing materials. They also need to provide more personalized services to print customers.
  • eCommerce: Print procurers increasingly want the convenience of online storefronts.
  • Cloud technologies and workflow digitization: Buyers want tools to become more efficient.
  • Advertising and design trends: Printers need to be aware of advertising and design trends, such as minimalistic designs that are cleaner and more elegant.
  • Green technologies and practices: Print customers are demanding that vendors adopt less environmentally harmful practices.

Challenges that print suppliers (and procurers) will continue to face are:

  • Industry adjustments: Cutbacks, mergers and acquisitions among printers, partly as a result of automation and technology.
  • Technology: Evolving technology such as 3D printing, augmented reality, artificial intelligence, and connectivity such as printing-on-the-go.

Print Buyers Must Be Competitive

For print procurers, acquiring printed materials will be increasingly competitive. According to eLynxx Chairman and Founder Bill Gindlesperger, a print industry veteran, “Digital marketing and communication can be effective based on the targets an organization wants to reach. However, print marketing and direct mail are becoming less expensive while driving better response rates. The bottom line is print marketing and direct mail outreach is becoming a better buy and fit than social media.”

“To get the maximum out of your marketing dollars, print buyers need to reduce the cost to produce each piece,” Gindlesperger says. “Print buyers need to buy print more competitively to get more bang for their buck—more mailing and marketing pieces out of the budget.” When print buyers are more competitive, they can get more pieces out, which leads to more responses, contacts and exposure.

There are two ways to be competitive:

  1. Buy more for the same dollars
  2. Become more efficient at managing specifications, vendors and projects by using better tools.

eLynxx software and services provide the tools buyers need to get more bang for the buck and do it with less effort. This allows them to expend their effort in other areas.

eLynxx Solutions offers other solutions for print buyers’ needs, including workflow efficiencies, technology, ecommerce and more. For a demonstration or more information, email info@elynxx.com or call 717-709-0990.