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Using Print to Support E-Commerce

Using Print to Support E-Commerce

Does your company or organisation have an online shop? If so, are you making the most of it from a marketing perspective? Does the online shop feature cross-sells, up-sells, recently viewed products, wish lists, live chat and a simple e-news sign-up to build a re-marketing list? Does it have voucher code functionality, a customer review facility, a decent user experience and an easy-to-accomplish check-out and payment facility? These are all the kind of things any decent e-commerce store should have if you are to get the most from your online shop.

How About Offline?

If you’re not using printing to support your e-commerce store, you are missing a trick. Printing, combined with your e-commerce operation, can make a huge difference to your success. We’ll explain how and why …

Don't miss marketing opportunities when dispatching orders.Example:

You receive an online order for a product. You dispatch it the same day with a packing slip and an automatically-generated email confirmation. It arrives the next day.

Perfect surely?

Well, not really. The speed and efficiency of your fulfilment offering is impressive, for sure. However, you have missed many golden opportunities if that’s all you do when dispatching online orders to customers. Take a look …

How to Make the Most out of Online Orders Using Print

1. Printed Branding

A good, well-recognised brand is worth its weight in gold if you get it right.Firstly, think about brand recognition. A good, well-recognised brand is worth its weight in gold if you get it right. Thinks of Virgin, Ted Baker, Apple and even an organisation like The National Trust. Each has a brand that’s instantly recognisable. You could put their logo on almost anything and it would instantly make that product more desirable. So, the lesson here is to ensure that your brand looks great in the first place (our talented graphic designers can help with that), but also that it’s presented to best effect on everything the customer sees when they receive their order. The packaging should be well-designed and showcase your brand. So should the packing slip; labels too. That’ll all help with brand recognition. Keep doing that and your brand should become more and more popular and valuable over time.

2. Cross-Selling, Up-Selling & Repeat-Selling Through Print

As well as the nifty packaging and attractive paperwork, ensure you give your customer every opportunity to remember your e-commerce shop and brand. You can do this through the inclusion of a variety of printed materials:

  • Include 2 or 3 attractive business cards or postcards for your customer to keep for future use. These are something that’s easy and compact for them to keep, ready to remind them to visit your store again in the future. Including more than one also gives them the opportunity to pass one on to a friend or relative (that’s free marketing for you).
  • Take this a step further by including a compact but beautifully designed brochure about your brand or product(s). What’s the history? Is there a U.S.P. — something unique about your product or brand that sets it apart? What is the mission or ethos of the company? If it’s green make sure you tell your audience in the copy. Make your brand relevant, and the message and presentation engaging, and your customers will buy into it.
  • Include a mini-catalogue with every order.Top Tip: One immensely worthwhile item to include with orders is a catalogue or mini catalogue. These are a great way to showcase additional products that the customer might have overlooked online. Such marketing pieces can include nicely shot product photos and descriptions along with quick/short links for online purchase — or order forms for offline ordering. As well as encouraging sales, printed mini-catalogues are also a great way to sell off discontinued products that are still in stock, or sale items that you’re keen to clear.
  • Include a discount voucher or code, to encourage them to make another purchase. Even better, make it time-sensitive, so they’re spurred on to act (i.e. buy again) without delay.
  • Include a printed ‘refer a friend’ offer of some kind. This could be printed on any of the above but might be easier to notice if it’s a on separate card, simple leaflet or coupon. It’ll stand more chance of success if there’s some sort of incentive for both the customer and the friend they are referring, so have a think about what you could offer each.
  • Printed loyalty cards are also a good thing to send with orders, especially if you also offer a service. They are yet another way to keep customers coming back again and again to buy more!

Printed branding will help to foster brand recognition and value in your brand.Including printed items like these, with every online order, is a great way to remind your customers about your brand and products. It’s also a way to help customers ‘buy into’ the brand, feel part of it, and for the business to become much more tangible and real. After all, there is a real bricks and mortar business, with real people, behind most online shops. Printed collateral like this will help your offering stand out from the crowd and become memorable. At the end of the day, that means repeat business, more profit, and a likely increase to your business’s value as it grows. What’s more, before you know it, you’ll have both an online store and be supporting it with a parallel mail-order business. One shop suddenly became two in effect, with only modest extra cost and effort. Don’t forget to take that a step further, too, by bringing in all the relevant social media channels. Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest, for example, are brilliant for lifestyle type product marketing, without it looking too ‘salesy’.

Printers in London Bridge, SE1

If you are looking for high quality, reliable printers in London Bridge, please do get in touch. Our print shop is located in Tabard Street, close to Borough High Street, just a short distance from London Bridge station. We supply digital printing, large format printing and we’re also a very green printer. Quotes are free, so please do get in touch for more information:

Your 2018 Marketing Calendar (Infographic)

Your 2018 Marketing Calendar (Infographic)

It’s the start of another year and that’s a great time to plan your marketing campaigns for the months ahead. That way you’ll be well prepared, you’ll hit the ground running and be able to make the most of every opportunity that arises throughout the marketing year.

Your Free 2018 Marketing Calendar

The good news is that we’ve made a quick reference 2018 Marketing Calendar just for you! It’s in infographic form and is designed in a very methodical way, taking you through all the main date-based marketing milestones for the year.

Timely Marketing Reminders, Month by Month

As you’ll see, the infographic is packed full of reminders of key UK dates, in month order, so you’ll have opportunity after opportunity to theme your promotions and sales messages for maximum impact and resonance. Use the calendar to plan ahead so that you have your design, artwork, printing and any electronic communications ready well ahead of time. Your clients and prospects can’t fail to be impressed, for example, when they receive a ‘love’ themed promotion from you to coincide with Valentine’s Day in February, sales and marketing literature themed suitably for Easter in April and perhaps even a Royal Wedding themed promotion when Prince Harry and Meghan Markle marry in May. Cafés, bars, hotels and restaurants will also benefit from putting on themed events and menus on key dates such as Burns Night, Halloween and perhaps even when it’s the FA Cup Final although, this year, that also happens to clash with the aforementioned Royal Wedding, which could make for a very interesting dual event!  These are just a few examples — see the full infographic below for many more:

Your Free UK Marketing Calendar for 2018

Of course, to start the year with a bang, January is a great time to launch a New Year sale. This will generate extra revenue, capitalising on the fact that people will have spendable money and vouchers from Christmas gifts. At this time of year, they’re in buying mood so any additional effort you can make to promote your sale will boost your bottom line and please the customers to boot. Our marketing calendar is a handy reminder of other important shopping days too, like Black Friday, Cyber Monday and suchlike. The quick-reference infographic will Read more

The Huge Potential of the Humble Business Card

The Humble Business Card – & Its Huge Potential

For such a tiny item of print, the humble business card can punch well above its weight as a business marketing tool. However, it can only do that if it’s designed and printed exceptionally well, then handed over in tip-top condition. First impressions really count.

Despite being such an important promotional item, business cards can be extremely economical to print – even with extra finishes and embellishments (we’ll come to those shortly). So, it makes sense to ensure that business cards are well designed in the first place, printed professionally with high-end printing machines and then protected at all times before hand-over. Keep them safe when storing them or transporting them so they are pristine and at their most impressive when delivered to your prospects and contacts. Going that small extra mile for a relatively modest price, together with a little bit of care, is really a no-brainer — there is absolutely no need to spoil that all-important first impression for the sake of just a few pennies per card and a little care.

Business Card Sizes & Shapes

Business card standard and non-standard sizes and shapesThe ‘standard’ size for business cards is ‘credit card’ size, usually being about 85mm x 55mm, however, sizes aren’t carved in stone so your card can actually be any size you like. Also, you don’t necessarily have to limit yourself to a rectangular card with standard ‘square cut’ corners — shapes are also possible.

  • You can have rounded corners on all, or just some, of the corners –  in fact opposing corners with curves can look rather funky (see example on the bottom row, on the right).
  • You can get us to die-cut the business cards to a totally bespoke shape. These can be geometric, circular, square or lozenge-shaped cards or totally irregular shapes to follow the graphics or image printed, for those who want to be a little different.

Lamination Options

Any kind of lamination, including matt, gloss or ‘soft touch’ options, can give business cards a nice feel as well as adding a protective layer to help limit the effects of wear, fingerprints and moisture. Lamination can also affect the colours printed underneath, with matt and soft-touch lamination flattening the contrast to give a modern, fresh feel, and gloss lamination deepening contrast in images and photographs at the same time as making the colours look more deep and saturated.

Spot UV Varnish

Spot UV varnish is also very popular on business cards. This clear, highly glossy varnish can really make particular features on your business card stand out. That’s particularly true when the remainder of the card is designed and finished so as to be very matt. So, if the card is printed on uncoated card or if it’s matt laminated, for example, that would work beautifully when juxtaposed against a glossy, UV varnished spot-printed area. A glossy spot UV varnished logo, for instance, can really make the logo stand out and draw attention to your brand, making it a focal point of the card, catching the light at certain angles and adding a feel of real high quality to boot. We can also gloss varnish with a range of surface textures – just ask for details.

Card Stock

The base card used can also make a big difference to the final impact of your business card. Standard business cards might use a ‘coated’ card base (matt, silk or gloss card with a special surface coating which lifts colours) or an ‘uncoated’ card for those who want their cards to look a little more ‘natural’ and don’t mind the lower contrast colours which result.

Within those core card types, there are also many more sub-types of card. These include recycled card for those who wish to be as eco-friendly as they can, partly recycled for those who wish to be eco-friendly but perhaps get some of the benefits of non-recycled card (e.g. brighter whites), tinted card stock (e.g. cream, ivory, pale colours and various whites) and finally textured cards. We can supply business cards with flat surfaces, a linen type texture, an ‘onion skin’ texture, ‘laid’ textures (small stripes in the make-up of the card stock) and many other kinds of texture. Technical note: while the ‘flat’ standard card types might be laminated, the textured variety would not usually be laminated otherwise the process of lamination tends to flatten any inherent texture to a degree, due to the pressure applied during the lamination process.

Attention to detail

Your business card doesn’t need to be single-sided – why not print it double-sided at the very least! Even printing a Read more