Selecting the right business printer for your office may seem like a complicated task. After all, there are many models with all kinds of features on the market today. By assessing the common types of printers, you can make the right choice for your business to maximize effectiveness and workflow while staying within your budget.
In this guide, we’ll review business printer types and features and explain how to choose the best model for your organization.
The Different Business Printer Types
There are several different types of printers available, each with its own set of features and benefits:
- Inkjet Printers – Inkjet printers are one of the most common types of printers. Affordable, easy to use, they produce high-quality prints and are best suited for small businesses, home offices, or individuals who only need to print documents or photos occasionally. They are also ideal for printing on a variety of media, such as glossy paper or cardstock.
- Laser Printers – Laser printers are faster and more efficient than inkjet printers. They are best suited to businesses that require a high volume of printed documents, such as law firms, accounting firms, or other professional offices. Laser printers use toner cartridges, which are more expensive than ink cartridges. That said, they can print thousands of pages before needing to be replaced.
- Multi-Functional Printers – Multi-functional printers combine several features into one machine, including printing, scanning, copying, and faxing. Ideal for businesses that require multiple functions but have limited space, all-in-one printers are ideal for small to medium-sized businesses or home offices.
- Wide Format Printers – Wide format printers are designed to produce large prints, such as posters, banners, or blueprints. They are best suited for businesses that require high-quality large-format printing, such as architecture firms, design studios, or print shops.
- Production printers – Production printers are designed to handle high-volume, high-speed printing tasks. They are a great choice for businesses that require large-scale printing, such as publishing companies, marketing agencies, or commercial printing companies. Production printers can print thousands of pages per minute and offer features such as automatic duplexing, collating, and stapling. They can also handle a variety of media types and sizes, including heavy stock paper and envelopes. Production printers are more expensive than other types of printers but are a worthwhile investment for businesses that require large-scale printing.
When choosing the right business printer, be sure to select a model that can handle the relevant tasks and output. For example, an inkjet printer wouldn’t be the right choice if your business requires high-volume print outputs on a daily basis.
It’s also important to bear in mind that laser printers and inkjet printers are available as monochrome printers. These models print only in black and white. Whereas color printers print full-color graphics.
Questions for Selecting A Business Printer
To find the best printer for your business environment, there are a few questions you should ask yourself.
What Is My Budget for a Business Printer?
When choosing a printer, factor in both the short-term and long-term costs. Inkjet printers are cheaper than laser printers in terms of upfront outlay. However, they require you to regularly change the ink cartridges. All of which adds up in the long run. Laser printers are more expensive than inkjets, but the price of consumables is lower, making it a more viable long-term solution.
Other printer types such as production printers can cost up to $100,000. For that reason, many choose to lease or rent a printer if they can’t make the payments upfront.
What Type of Documents Will I Be Printing?
This is one of the most important features of your business printer. If you need your printer for high-quality colored graphics on different paper types, then an inkjet printer is your best option. However, if your company prioritizes only black-and-white textual documents, then a laser printer would be more efficient.
How Much Volume Will I Be Printing?
The PPM (or pages per minute) rate dictates how fast your printer is and the volume that it can handle. Inkjet printers are notoriously slow. If your workplace is fast-paced, then a laser printer would be a better alternative as it usually prints at around 30 PPM.
However, if your business makes high-quality marketing material, and you need the speed of a laser printer with the quality of an inkjet, then production printers can satisfy your needs. Production printers start from 60 PPM and upwards. They’re effective for large printing operations with tight deadlines.
Do I Need Any Special Features, Such as Scanning, Copying, or Faxing?
Multi-functional printers offer copy, faxing, and scanning capabilities. Naturally, they’re more expensive than regular inkjets and laser printers. That said, production printers offer advanced finishing options such as folding, stapling, hole punching, and booklet making. These features can help create professional-looking documents with minimal manual labor.
How Much Space Do I Have Available for a Printer?
You want to make sure you have ample room for your business printer. Nothing is worse than buying a model that doesn’t fit into your office. Most printer sizes vary by the specific brand, model, and features. But there is a general rule of thumb. Production printers are typically the largest and can take up an entire room. Your usual business multi-functional printer is a stand-alone model, but there are smaller versions available. Laser printers also take up a lot of space as they are usually stand-alone models. Whereas inkjet printers are the smallest types and can often be placed on a desk.
The Comprehensive Printing Solution
If your business needs a bigger and better approach to printing, you should consider a business printer. On the other hand, you may face a general technology issue, IT, or struggle to manage important business documents. Either way, Kelly Office Solutions does all this and more for your business. If you operate in the Winston-Salem, Charlotte, or Greensboro areas, contacting Kelly Office Solutions can vastly improve the effectiveness of your workflow through multiple services. This includes office technology, IT services, document management, and also mailing solutions.