Learning to Determine Your Printing Costs
Brief Description: When you are going to have to make a lot of prints of something, you should
be sure that you know how to calculate your costs. This article describes some methods of
calculating your costs that will help you be accurate in this calculation.
When you are deciding if you are going to have something professionally printed or not, you
want to make sure that you take the time that you need to calculate the cost of having it
professionally printed and printing it at home. This way, you can make a wise decision.
As you are calculating the costs you should make sure that you go about doing it correctly. You
do not want to miscalculate and then find that you are in over your budget or that you cannot
finish your printing job.
The Cost of Paper
First, you should make sure that you
know how much your paper costs. It
is important that you understand what
unit you will be buying the paper in so
that you can calculate how much it
will cost per page.
There are a lot of people that think
they can figure it out by the unit it is
sold in. Although it may be more
complicated in the beginning, in the
end you will want to know how much it will cost you per page to do your printing job.
Make sure that you include the tax on the paper and any shipping fees if you have to have it sent
to you. The costs like this that many people forget about make it difficult to give an exact price
for the paper they buy.
Money in the Ink
Second, you will want to figure out how much your ink is going to cost per page. This is a very
difficult estimate to make and you want to make sure that you do all that you can to make sure
the calculation that you give is accurate.
While you are taking the time to learn how you are going to calculate this you want to make sure
that you take the time that you need to understand how you are going to test it out. Look on your
ink cartridge and figure out how many sheets it can print at what percentage of coverage.
Make sure that you take the time that you need to
understand what percentage of the paper you will be
covering. This can be a difficult estimation and if you
need an exact number you will have to buy ink cartridges
and keep track of how many copies you can make before
it runs out.
When you are running your test you want to make sure
that you are running it on your actual document. If you
have a lot of a specific color on your document you will
find that the color that you are using the most will run out
far before the other colors in the cartridge do.
As you calculate this you will want to make sure that you set a price limit for your test. This
way, your test is not going to cost you a lot of money and you will be able to find out how much
it will cost per page without a ridiculous upfront cost.
Printer in Your Wallet
After you have figured out what the cost of your paper and your ink will be, you will then want
to make sure that you figure out the cost for your printer. The majority of printers will tell you
how many times they can print before needing to be replaced.
Look for this number and take into account how much the machine cost you. If you divide the
cost of the machine by the number of pages you can print before having to replace the machine
you will have a better understanding of what each page will cost you for your printer.
There are also many other costs that you have to be aware of if you are choosing to print on your
own. You should factor in the time that the printing will cost and you will want to figure out
what the value of your time is.
Make sure that you are taking time to understand how you are going to store the paper that you
have printed as well. If your printer gives you copies that require you to let them dry before they
touch anything, this will add some time to the process.
Finally, you should be sure that you understand how you are going to be sure that you can get an
estimate from a professional printer as well. Take what you want to have printed into the office
and make sure that they give you an accurate estimate of what it would cost to have it printed.
Photo Credit: Etringita, Mbgrigby