Smaller Printers Expect Robust 2011
Some 70 percent of quick and small commercial printers expect sales to grow in 2011 while just 7 percent expect them to decrease, according to the inaugural issue of the National Association for Printing Leadership (NAPL) Quick and Small Commercial Printers Trends Report.
The new NAPL (www.napl.org) report, sponsored by Xerox, reveals that 55 percent of those surveyed enjoyed sales growth last year, although there was a wide gulf between the top 20 percent, for whom sales grew 11.4 percent, and the bottom 20 percent, who saw sales decline 7.1 percent.
According to the report, the optimism over sales was being tempered by concern over a number of issues, most notably the still shaky economy and rising costs. While nearly 61 percent of those surveyed expect sales to increase over the next six months, almost 46 percent also expect to have to raise prices during that period. Inconsistent sales was a major issue for some respondents, while others pointed to increasing costs for consumables and business expenses.
The new report found that quick and small commercial printers have taken a number of steps to improve profitability in a tough economic environment. More than half reduced staff (50.7 percent) and trimmed payroll hours (57.7 percent) last year. Cuts in payroll (down 3.2 percent) and overhead (down 5.5 percent) helped reduce total costs 1.8 percent. As a result, total costs fell, on average, from 93.6 percent of sales in 2009 to 90.4 percent of sales in 2010.
Nearly 40 percent of those surveyed for the first issue of the Quick and Small Commercial Printers Trends Report had sales of $1 million-$3 million; 50 percent had sales below $1 million.