Take Your Shop Digital with an Online Print Proofing System
Print shops have existed for a long time, but that doesn’t mean your technology needs to be as old as the profession. In the age of printing centers such as Kinkos, print shops offer a more personalized service that customers enjoy, and you can better your services with an online print proofing system. A proofing solution can add an enterprise-level look to your company in addition to other benefits.
We’re going to discuss what you do after your design is created and you need to send it through your approval process. That’s where an online print proofing system comes in, helping you throughout the process to manage revisions and organize your print jobs afterwards.
Communicating with your customers is a large part of your work as a print shop, and that back-and-forth can be a lot to manage. Your inbox gets a lot more traffic than just communication about print jobs, and when it comes to remembering what print job goes with what email chain, it can get a little overwhelming. In Ashore, you send your clients an initial email containing the link to their proof, but all other communication occurs on the platform. Your clients make their comments directly on the file you send, providing better context for their changes. You’ll receive a notification when comments are made and are able to reply to those comments directly within system.
Ashore also provides a timeline of the proof – all messages that you’ve sent are viewable on the timeline, so you are able to refer back to previous emails. All of the comments and different versions are stacked, as well, so you are always able to look back on the full progress of the print job. Not only does Ashore help you communicate, it helps you keep a record of that communication.
Getting from point A (design) to point B (approval) may require some pit stops (revisions) along the way. With your main goal being to get client approval and print the job, revisions just prolong the entire process. It may not be obvious at first, but an online print proofing system can actually help reduce the overall number of revisions per job. This is an outgrowth of better communication. An online solution, such as Ashore, allows your clients to provide contextualized feedback directly on the file.
It is a lot easier to understand what changes your customers want when their feedback is placed in the context of the image, rather than in an email chain. With that improved communication and understanding, you’re more likely to get all their requested changes done on the first revision.
Whether you send out five jobs a day or five hundred, it can be difficult to get feedback or decisions on your jobs. There is also the anxiety about nagging your clients too much. That’s where automatic reminders come in. Ashore allows you to choose your reminder frequency for your clients, either daily, every other day or weekly. Your client’s print will be kept in the forefront of their mind, speeding along review and approval. The bonus is that the reminders are customizable, but obviously automated – your clients won’t feel like you’re pressuring them personally.
Another area where automation comes in handy is when using a workflow. Your client may need their design approved by more than one person, and while that is probably not your normal use-case, it can be quite handy to have in your back pocket. An online print proofing system like Ashore will shuffle your design to the next person in the workflow as decisions are made on it, no emails from you necessary.
The benefits of an online proofing system with regards to organization comes back to your alternative – email. As mentioned above, your inbox gets a lot of traffic, and if you want to organize your emails for specific jobs you have to do so manually, making folders for jobs that are in progress, completed or printed. With a solution like Ashore, all of your print jobs are in one place without all the extraneous clutter.
Your proof archive shows all of your proofs and allows you to sort to find proofs in progress, approved or partially approved, among other options. You are able to quickly sort to find jobs that are still ongoing or overdue. At a glance, you can see the status of the proofs by looking at the color of the icon: red for not approved, purple for overdue, green for approved. If you have a company-wide organizational system, you can utilize tags to sort specific proofs into certain categories and better personalize your archive.
The benefits of an online print proofing system are many, and its drawbacks are few. It’s time to bring your business fully into the today’s tech age, improving your customer relationships, automating tasks and organizing your print jobs. You and your employees will be able to focus your efforts on getting tasks done, designing and working with customers because all of your proofing process will be in one place.
Here at Ashore we aim to provide you with the best online print proofing system we can. Want to decide for yourself? You can check out our functionality and all of our features with a free account today.