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Calculating Delivery Costs on Your Printing

It is easy to forget that you actually have to pay for your publication to be delivered either to you or your reader when you are wrapped up in the printing process. But overlooking this final cost can lead to a very rude awakening for you and your wallet.

Delivery and distribution costs can make a big difference in choosing a printer and in the overall scope of your project. For example, a friend refers you to a great printer based out of Los Angeles. They are trustworthy, accurate, speedy and inexpensive. Sounds perfect. Except you live in New York and you want to print 80,000 units of a 500-page book. Having an order of that size shipped across the country can take a big chunk out of your budget and it is critical that you factor in that cost at the beginning of the process.

Some printers offer distribution services. In other words, they not only print your document but mail it off directly to all the names on your distribution list. These charges arenít necessarily standard across the industry and depend greatly on your specific needs. So make sure you give your printer specific instructions on how you want your project to be distributed and where each unit is going to go.

Timing is one of the most important factors when calculating delivery and/or distribution costs. If you need you 20 boxes of your brochure sent overnight delivery, youíre going to have to be ready to spend some serious cash. On the other hand, if youíve planned well ahead and donít need the brochures delivered for weeks or even months, you might be able to save a great deal of money by using a slower and less expensive shipping method. The same goes for distribution. Sending out the brochures to your distribution list via first class mail will add a significant per-unit cost as compared to a slower method such as media mail.

Remember, when discussing delivery costs with your printer, there are no trivial details. Tell them if the delivery person will have to come inside, if there is an elevator, if there is a loading dock, etc. Each of these factors has a significant influence on the total cost.

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