A major argument about print is that it’s not cost-effective or sustainable. With a huge push for companies to “go green,” more businesses are increasing their use of digital materials. However, there are ways to find an acceptable balance. For example, using laminating equipment will cut down on superfluous printing, as pages can be used for multiple occasions.

Additionally, implementing binding supplies into daily operations will keep documents organized, which will lessen the likelihood of lost pages – a usual cause for businesses to reprint certain documents.

Evolving with customer needs

The November issue of Wide Format Imaging delved into the sustainable printing market, where companies continue to push the importance of physical material, but also enforcing ways to keep products from having a negative environmental impact.

Dave Sunderman, sustainable project lead coordinator at Visual Marking Systems, explained to the source that it comes down to the three P’s of sustainability – people, profits and planet. Essentially, environmentally-friendly brands want a printing solution that will reduce time and money while improving their bottom line.

Nicki Macfarlane, president at ProGraphix, told the news source that depending on whether the material is being placed indoors or outdoors will dictate the type of ink used. Finding the right sustainable option is often a time-consuming process and the choices are constantly changing.

“We educate our customers by passing out samples of sustainable print materials with symbols to highlight the sustainable characteristic,” Macfarlane said. “Our website also includes information on sustainable materials. Our primary banner and paper materials are now recyclable, and many of our rigid substrates are recyclable, biodegradable or compostable. We also use adhesive-backed products with no pvc content when possible.”

Sunderman added that it’s important to do more with less. For example, product availability and cost might change, but it’s crucial to find ways to incorporate physical material into the needs of customers.