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How to Guide Customers to Understand Print and Leverage the Benefits

Print terminology can leave customers uncertain about what they actually need. The complexities of concepts such as "litho," "CMYK," and "A7" can be daunting for those not immersed in the print industry. Recognising this, print resellers play a crucial role as guides, leveraging their expertise to simplify the technical jargon and assist customers in making informed decisions.

A prominent challenge is the discrepancy in terminology or language used by different customers to describe their print requirements. A recent interaction with a customer reminded us of the difficulties that can arise when trying to understand their specific needs. In this instance, the customer was looking for a book similar to one they had seen at WHSmiths. Initially, our customer service team was slightly confused by the request. However, we engaged in a friendly back-and-forth conversation to better understand what the customer was referring to. Eventually, we discovered that they were referring to a PUR softcover book. This interaction served as a reminder that customers may not always be familiar with industry jargon or terminology. It is essential for professionals in the print industry to be patient and understanding, actively seeking further details and asking clarifying questions to bridge communication gaps caused by language barriers from those who don't buy print daily.

A print reseller engaged in conversation with a florist with print-specific keywords in a speech bubble

One common area for clarification is the difference between RGB and CMYK. While it may seem overwhelming initially, customers are likely already familiar with some of these principles as they are part of standard colour theory. Customers are likely already familiar with RGB, a term commonly associated with digital displays or desktop printers. On the other hand, CMYK might be less well-known, even though it is the industry standard for printing purposes. One area that often needs clarification for consumers is paper sizes, which can be a jumble of letters and numbers that seem meaningless. The most common paper size in the UK is A4, which is widely used for office documents or school assignments. Many people have probably already used A4 paper without even realising it. To make sense of the different paper sizes, it's helpful to explain to customers that the larger the paper, the smaller the associated number.

For example, A0 is the largest paper size, while A10 is the smallest. This numbering system may initially seem counterintuitive, but it's a logical way to categorise paper sizes. Additionally, customers often ask about the difference between digital and lithographic printing. When considering Litho printing, it is easier to communicate the idea of newspaper printing in old movies, producing large quantities - making it a cost-effective option for longer print runs. On the other hand, customers may understand that digital printing operates similarly to a large inkjet printer. It is perfect for shorter print runs and offers the benefits of quick turnaround and customisation. By simplifying the language, customers can accurately explain their printing needs, enabling resellers to better understand and meet them.

Make Upselling Easy with Visual Marketing

"To sell the sizzle, not the steak" is an old adage that means to sell the outcome and meaning of the item, as opposed to the actual item itself. This saying perfectly sums up everything about the customer's buying journey. People are naturally inclined to buy with their eyes, and captivating visuals can immediately pique their interest in a product. Studies have shown that 93% of consumers consider visual appearance to be the key deciding factor in a purchasing decision (Justuno, 2016). By visually demonstrating what customers might require, trade resellers can guide them towards making informed decisions and potentially even upsell products or services they may not have initially considered.

For instance, product brochures and sample packages offer an easy way to showcase additional offerings and provide upsell opportunities. These tangible tools not only educate customers about the immense range of available print options but also further break down the communication barrier. Most customers typically have a limited vision when planning and organising an event, focusing merely on essentials like flyers, posters, and banners. However, by guiding them towards the vast array of additional products and services available, you can unlock the potential for more substantial sales and assist them in enhancing their events. This approach not only strengthens the customer relationship but also enhances the overall event planning experience by providing added value.

Ensuring a comprehensive understanding of customers' needs is no easy feat. However, you can effortlessly break down the communication barrier by employing a strategic approach by simplifying complex concepts and using relatable examples. Reaching this consensus paves the way for deeper engagement, laying the foundation for a long-lasting and fruitful relationship with your customers.


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