The way we address W2P for Wide Format is similar to the way we address the rest of the industry in general. The major difference between regular print and wide format which makes wide format complicating are its SIZE. SIZE DOES MATTER.
We have 2 overarching technologies. The first and longest standing technology is our ePOWER and Web to Print CLOUD (W2PCLOUD) technology. This technology is most commonly used for B2B purposes between PSP’s and their established customers. On the front-end, this is generally easy to address because here the items are pre-set and/or templated and it all happens within our infrastructure which has all the sophistication to accommodate pre-approved materials. We also address the workflow side of the production back-end because our production workflow is easily customizable in that you can create you own custom print production workflow and assembly line. Because of the nature of our customizable back-end workflow, we don’t have the same issue as our competitors do in trying to retrofit a standard web to print backend for the purposes of wide format. Our system thankfully, does not have that issue.
Where we have seen additional challenges was with another technology offering we have called Web to Print SHOP (W2PSHOP). This offering is a modular solution whereby we append the W2P technology into the website of our customers.
We have 3 general technologies that are commonly used by our customers to facilitate a printing website for the B2C space.
- W2P SHOP Price Matrix which facilitates the display of product options such as size, substrate, etc.
- GoPrint2 Upload Technology which allows the customer to upload files. This technology will detect the file and make sure it resonates with the price matrix.
- W2P SHOP uDRAW which is the design online editor of which we now have 4 different design editors.
Size affects pricing:
General W2P Solutions may be able to accommodate standard product options like paper size, weight, finishes etc, but when it comes to the size, it adds a whole new layer of sophistication since price is based on a unit of space which depends on the metric. And that price per unit will decrease the bigger the size and the more quantities you print.
File sizes affect uploads:
Size affects file uploads as well. The end user must make sure that the file uploaded resonates with the size selected in the product options. So we need to make sure there is communication between the file upload technology with the product and pricing options.
File sizes affect the online design editors:
Size also may affect the design online technology as well for the same reasons. The design online applications can clog the internet bandwidth which can also make the end user experience quite unenjoyable. So our technologies are geared to address that as well.
We have circumvented the issues on all 3 because our solutions development focuses on one goal – FLEXIBILITY so that our solutions are as advanced, adaptable and affordable as possible. In line with this thinking, our uDRAW editor draws from 4 different online design technologies. Whereas most solutions will give you one editor, whatever the capabilities they have will box you in to a single way of doing things. However, we utilize 4 editor so that whatever one can NOT do, the other 3 potentially can.
SIZE Affects HOSTING
Some systems can not handle the size issues , and if they can, then sometimes the hosting infrastructure might create limitations. So we circumvent this in our technology software and by making our infrastructure one that can accommodate this as well. Very often we are asked by a customer to assist them with their W2P technology, but when the technology is embedded in their website, their site can not handle it. At that point we recommend that they scale up their hosting infrastructure, or have us host it.