Today, we will cover several ways that can help you to reduce cost of your printing, whether you are running a home business or a company with 1000 employees.
Make sure to Preview your documents before printing:
A lot of people might think this is something they do all the time but the truth is that most people waste a lot of paper printing out the wrong portion of their content, including myself.
Use that “Preview” button to preview what you are printing. Almost all applications including Firefox, Internet Explorer, Photoshop, and MS Word have this feature.
At least think about how many million trees would be saved if “everyone” used the Preview button?
Here’s an example of print preview on Firefox: (Yes, it’s so simple, isn’t it? Your actions can save a tree.)
Use Draft mode and Black and White mode for Drafts:
You can save additional time and ink if you are still working on your draft versions by using the draft mode.
Simply click on “Properties” and you should be able to set your printer to “Draft” or “Fast Draft” mode as shown here:
Save even more ink by printing in Grayscale:
Scan all documents “digitally” into CD or DVDs
Have you thought about all the stuff that could be digitized into a Jpeg or PDF file into a single CD or a DVD?
A lot of times, people will ask you to fax some important documents in order to verify your information when doing business.
By having all documents “digitized” and accessible from a single CD or DVD (or even your G-mail), you no longer have to remember where you left that Social Security card, passport, Business License, etc…etc… Although it is good idea to keep the original copies, I find it easier to e-mail my digital copies straight from G-mail.
I could be anywhere in the world and have access to all my important documents with just 1 CD or DVD instead of lugging all your documents everywhere with you, especially going over-seas.
Best ways to digitize your documents?
Get a good office scanner. I use an HP Deskjet F380, which cost me about $70 to do printing, scanning, and copying all-in-one. Although it’s slower than a laserjet, I can do most office work using it and it scans reasonably fast. I use it to scan all my invoices, receipts, and anything that can be scanned.
If you can afford it, there are some really nice laser version of the Deskjet, LaserJet M5025, which can scan hundreds of documents at a time and send them to your e-mail when its done via a single PDF file. This can prove to be very handy for all those POs and Invoices you have stacked up in huge boxes. I remember on one of my first jobs, I digitized about 20 boxes of POs (around 100,000 letter sized papers) from Wal-mart. (Think of how many trees I saved for their future POs!)
Nowdays, that company can simply access every one of their POs via a DVD-ROM.
Buy ink cartridges online from 3rd party suppliers
CD and DVD Labels
Now, just make sure to label them right using good CD labels, especially if you do have a lot of data to digitize. You can download free CD templates over here. These templates are great if you actually want to organize your digitized documents. You can even get some really good discounts on CD/DVD labels here.
If you like to spend more money, you can always get a label printer too. I have tried Dymo label printers before and these work really good with address labels or CD/DVD labels.
Print Labels and get your mail delivered faster!
Instead of spending time writing the addresses, I use my printer to print out labels so I save time on my frequent mailings and my mail gets there faster.
(Did you know that US Postal Service actually uses a scanner to process mail? If you have handwritten addresses, your mail will could actually take 1-2 days more due to manual scan by human workers. I did learn this through an executive manager I talked to at Pitney Bowes.)
By using labels instead of handwriting, you will save yourself hassle of writing and your mail will get to your destination faster. (You can even print out the US Postal Service address bar code on the envelope itself to ensure super fast delivery.)
You can also save some money by ordering labels from online label shops such as WorldLabel.com, which I have used before and found 40-50% cheaper than retailers. They even have popular “size-compatible” Avery labels, much cheaper than buying the branded ones.
Now, if you think this blog post will “change” printing behaviors of our readers, please leave a comment on how many trees you think we saved today.