Good morning! How much does it cost to print a book in your printing house? Or: What’s the price of print? These are the questions customers usually ask in their first e-mail or phone call to us. However, there is a better moment to ask about the price. When?
Generally speaking, when you more or less know the ultimate form of your publication. We have already elaborated in detail here what and why should be included in a request for quotation. So, just a quick recap: it is important that you tell the customer service assistant about the dimensions of the publication, the parameters of the interior and of the cover, the kind of binding, the packaging, the proof, advanced copies, the print run, as well as the delivery details and the currency.
Once you have got all these parameters, it is time to ask about the price.
What if I can’t decide about all that?
No worries. We do not assume that every customer is an expert in printing and publishing, or knows the specifications of all types of paper used in our printing house. If you are not able to provide such comprehensive details, our Customer Service Department will be happy to assist. For example, if you wish to have very white paper, or if your planner needs a very wide opening angle, our customer service representative will suggest some solutions.
Things are a bit more complicated if you have the knowledge but cannot make up your mind. Browsing our Instagram photos with the books we have printed often helps to take a decision. You can see what the finished book looks like with the suggested solutions. In any case you always have the final word; our representatives may only present and suggest the most advantageous options.
I only need a rough estimate, because I’m new in the book business
You cannot make a cost estimate for a book off the top of your head. The price depends on all those variables mentioned above. There is a huge price gap between a unit price of a large-volume brochure and a few pieces of hardcover thread-sewn album with enhancements. Yet it does not mean that you have to wait for the book to be set and ready for printing before you can ask about the price. You need a figure to enter into the ‘cost of printing’ section of your business plan. So you should have a solid idea about your final product.
If the book is still a future plan, it is good to be flexible and financially prepared for any changes. If the book turns out to be a dozen pages longer, or colour diagrams have to be added to illustrate certain concepts, a financial safety margin comes in handy. And there is one final thing…
The market situation
Currently, the printing and publishing industry is going through a hard time. Due to the continuing rise in paper prices quotations are valid for only a very short time. A cost estimate prepared a few weeks ago might have nothing in common with today’s quote. Truth be told, the longer you wait the more you will pay. The costs of printing are only likely to go up. However, let us assure you the situation is uncomfortable for everyone concerned.
I have made a request for quotation, but now I must call it off. What happens?
A cost estimate or quote does not oblige you to anything. Obviously, customers make enquiries at a number of different places to compare the offers and choose the most favourable. Also, publishing plans can change. We understand it and we are always ready to give advice and support the publisher in their undertaking. If you have any questions, contact us!