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Thursday, April 19, 2012

InkCycle is Guarding Your Color Toner Profits (ITEX 2012)

The plan was to update the blog at the END of the day... with an overview of the classes while picking out information our dealers would find helpful and innovative.  However, I just attended a class presented by Carlyle Singer from Katun.  And that class got me excited about color toner.

"Is anyone guarding your color toner business?" was a refreshing and honest look at a dealers' risk and reward - which is a careful battle - when it comes to defending your margins on color toner products (or any product for that matter). Carlyle pointed out that color toner remanufacturing is tough, and the few manufacturers are capable of producing consistent, high quality products.  She said that choosing the best remanufacturer is going to be the guardian for your color business.

The bright side is that there are a few companies in the market that can do it, and can do it well.  (We like to recomment InkCycle as that company.) 

There are a few things you should look for in a reliable color toner provider:
  • Don't always choose the "first to market." Some manufacturers will introduce incomplete or flawed products just to be the "first." Whether they know there may be a problem, or it's unintentional, when the product is released the manufacturer is risking your reputation with your customer.  Research and development takes time, and it might take an extra month or so to perform all of the proper testing and development work to ensure the delivery of a great aftermarket product.  (At InkCycle, we actually pride ourselves on being first to market very seldomly. We have STMC certified testing processes that we must follow. To do that, it takes time.)
  • Quality in color toner is imperative! The users of a color laser printer have different demands than most monochrome users. Find a manufacturer that pays attention to these details, and utilizes their resources to deliver a quality product.
  • Cheap is almost never the best. Low price means that the company spent little time and money on developing the product.  Manufacturers who have properly researched a product and ran the proper tests will never be the low-cost leader.  They're usually the quality leader.  And quality is the choice you need to make for the future of your business and to maintain your profitability.
What it boils down to is finding a remanufacturing partner that you can trust. Today, just about every manufacturer uses the term "premium" when describing their product line, however that can be misleading.  You actually need to take the time to research your manufacturer and ensure they understand your business and how they affect you on a daily basis.  Don't settle for "good enough, first to market" products, because they could have a negative affect on your bottom line. Go with a transparent company that you can trust.
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