MANAGED PRINT SERVICES | 4 MIN READ
Whether you use large multifunction printers or desktop printers, the cost of printing can quickly add up. How much does printing cost per page? What does 5% page coverage look like? As a metro-Atlanta based copier/printer dealer, we aim to educate our audience to equip them with the proper tools to make the right business decisions. Keep reading to get your questions answered.
[Quick Summary] To figure out your printing cost per page, scan a document using an ink and toner coverage calculator tool and plug the actual coverage amount into this formula: Cost per page = Cartridge $ Total / [(Page Yield x (1-Actual coverage)]
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What Does 5% Page Coverage Look Like?
When you buy cartridges for your printer, you may notice a phrase on it that says "5% page coverage." Understanding what this phrase means is key in determining how much printing costs per page on your printer.
5% page coverage indicates an average number of pages that can be printed when 5% of a standard 8.5 x 11 inch piece of paper is covered in ink.
Even if you don't print that often, your cartridges can run out faster than you may think. While individual consumers may not need to be as worried about their cartridges quickly running out, in a business setting, these costs can quickly add up.
For instance, some cartridges may claim to be able to print 1,500 pages at 5% page coverage before running out. However, what does 5% actually look like?
We conducted an experiment to find out using a tool called the APFill Ink and Toner Coverage Calculator.
The results were pretty shocking. Below, you can see what page coverage on one of our printers looked like at 5%, 10%, and 22%:
Many people print pages with coverage closer to 10% which means that your cartridges may be used up twice as fast as what the cartridge says!
How Much Does Printing Cost Per Page?
To figure out how much printing costs per page on your printer, use our simple formula. Scan a document using the ink and toner coverage calculator tool discussed in the previous section and plug the actual coverage amount into the formula below to find out your typical cost per page.
Formula: Cost per page = Cartridge $ Total / [(Page Yield x (1-Actual coverage)]
- Cartridge $ Total - the amount that you spent on your new cartridge at the store or online
- Page Yield - the total amount of page yield claimed on the cartridge box (aka number of pages that can be printed at 5% coverage)
- Actual Coverage - average ink coverage percentage (written in the form of a decimal - 10% = 0.1) from your documents after running them through the APFill Calculator.
Note: If you find that your page coverage is actually 5%, then use this formula:
Cost per page = Cartridge $ Total / Page Yield
How Can I Get a Better Deal?
Now that you're aware of the realities of printing costs, you might be asking yourself, "Is there a way to get a better deal on cartridges?"
The answer is it depends.
If you're only operating a single desktop printer at your house, then there isn't much you can do to reduce printing costs. However, if you print in higher volume, especially if you're a business, then it would benefit you greatly to use the services of a local printer dealer.
With a local dealer, you can get better prices on machines, great service for when they break down (because they all will at some point), better prices on your cost per page, and most importantly - less downtime!
All of this can be achieved through managed print services.
What are Managed Print Services?
Managed print services are a third-party full-service and support provider for your printer fleet. Companies use managed print services to reduce overhead and save money by cutting costs associated with machine service− namely, toner, machine parts, and labor.
As a managed print services provider, we help our customers experience the following:
- Cost efficiency − Print jobs can be re-directed to lower-cost devices and rules can be created to manage the use of color printing
- Virtual print queues − store print jobs and release them manually at the machine via passcode
- Automatic notification for issues such as low toner levels (or automatic toner replenishment for those enrolled in our program)
- Tracking of service/maintenance history
Managed print services is the best option for businesses that have consistent monthly print volume.
With managed print services, you can save hundreds to thousands on printing costs each month. Re-allocate previously wasted money on business growth and more.
We hope that this article answered your questions. For more printer-related content, follow our blog!
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Posted by Bernie Schom
Bernie Schom is the Vice President of Sales at Standard Office Systems and has been in the copier and printer industry for over three decades.