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As a print distributor, you’re tasked with guiding your clients through the entire print process—including finding the right trade printer to work with. Your job is to know exactly which trade printer is going to produce the right work at the right price so that your client receives their vision on paper in a way that exceeds expectations. But if you and your trade printer don’t have a good relationship, that can make things much more difficult.

Every print distributor needs to have a list of trade printers they work with in order to provide the right products to each of their clients. Not all manufacturers are the same—every project has a unique thumbprint that needs the right print source to produce it properly. We put together a few of our favorite questions that we get asked from distributors to help them understand how we work and what projects we do best.

1. Who Is Your Ideal Customer?

This is a great place to start and can give you a well-rounded look at the types of distributors that trade printers prefer to work with. While the basics are important, it’s even better to get more detailed with your questions. Do your clients have large project runs? Do they have strict deadlines with short notice? Do they prefer a certain type of technology?

You want to find out what types of projects your print partners handle regularly (and prefer to handle) so that you know when to reach out to them. Selecting the wrong trade printers for your project can not only complicate the completion and schedule but also tarnish your reputation—which is the last thing you need.

2. What Is Your Ideal Project?

Does your trade printer focus on saddle stitched and perfect bound products? Here, it’s almost always better to find a manufacturer that focuses on just a few print types than one that tries to do everything. A large printer that offers generic services may not be able to produce the custom quality that your clients are looking for. This question is a great way to weed out trade printers who may be trying to do too much, along with helping you narrow down the best abilities so you know what you can offer to your clients.

3. How Long Is Your Sales Process?

Most print manufacturers are aware that projects need to be done quickly. Many of your clients could be on strict, short deadlines and have no wiggle room on when the product needs to be sent out. We understand these issues all too well, which is why we know it’s important to discuss sales process timelines with a potential trade printer. 

Getting Started

Looking to add to your growing list of print trade printers? Seaway Printing is a reliable, competitively priced, world-class printing company dedicated to creating media that clients will love. Contact us today to learn more about our services and how we can develop a smooth, stress-free experience that will keep your clients coming back for more.