There are plenty of cost-effective choices for mid- and small-size printers, too. Printable was already mentioned, and don't forget Dalim Software with its print workflow solutions, including web-to-print. The list goes on. Even Adobe is in the act, with its Scene7 web-to-print component that enables personalized print products and localized marketing materials through hosted services. There also are suppliers out if the printing industry with attractive pricing, but Atkinson says to tread cautiously. "Make sure you choose a vendor with prepress, estimating and print MIS knowledge," he councils. PrintSites, for example, offers web-based e-commerce software created exclusively for the print sector by multi-generation industry insiders, "by printers for printers," the firm says. (Editor's note: Mr. Atkinson is careful not to endorse any products.)
Mark Vruno, a business writer reporting on the commercial print industry for more than 20 years, moderated a "Case Study Theatre" at the recent PrintWorld 2010 show in Toronto. He also was the lead writer for the GRAPH EXPO 2010 Show Daily and is the former executive editor of Graphic Arts Monthly magazine. Follow him at http://twitter.com/MarkV_Chicago and email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.