How to Set Up A Profitable Print Reseller Programme

How do you extend the reach of your print business and bring in lots more business? Get others to sell your services for you as part of a print reseller programme. 

Written by
Ella Faulkner
Internal Sales

What Is Print Reselling?

How do your customers engage your services? Chances are they either mail you a request for a quote, they call you or give you a nudge on social media, or they drop into your print shop. In every one of these instances, the customer is dealing directly with you.

But what if they didn’t?

What if, instead of (or as well as) dealing direct with customers, you engaged an army of resellers who did the job of finding, quoting, negotiating and ordering for you, so that all you had to do was print the job and ship it?

Why Choose Reseller Printing?

For any print shop, the aim of launching a reseller program is to dramatically increase order numbers without needing to pay and manage an ever-expanding sales team or manage individual customer relationships.

Queries, follow ups, amendments, complaints and every other interaction are handled by the reseller, helping to streamline the print shop operation by removing much of the day-to-day work that can get in the way of actual printing.

There are benefits for the print reseller too: while they do what they do best — bringing in new business — they don’t have to invest in, process or worry about the printing. Through a combination of a small markup for them and/or a slight trimming of your own margins, the reseller takes a share of the proceeds of each job.

It can be an extremely effective way to bring increase turnover, protect margins and reduce risk.

FREE DOWNLOAD: Top Print Industry Pain Points And How To Resolve Them

How To Set Up A Print Reseller Programme

1. White label or branded?

One of the key considerations for reseller printing is whether to operate as a white-label print shop (that is, each reseller sells your printed goods under their own brand name) or whether goods are branded in your name and resellers effectively become licensed sellers of your products.

If you’re aiming to build a distinctive print brand, the latter will be the way forward, but that creates brand consistency issues. You’ll want each reseller to operate in a certain way and be consistent in the way they use your branding. That means you’ll need to invest in supplying common branding materials and monitoring compliance. You’ll also need to ensure customer sales standards are consistently high, as any poor service from a printing reseller will impact your reputation.

Offer a print reseller programme as a white-label enterprise and you don’t have to worry quite so much about such things, because the customer’s relationship is with the reseller, not you.

2. Find reselling partners

While your next print reseller could come from anywhere, you’ll want to target a likely audience rather than waiting and hoping that they’ll find you. Think about your highest volume customers and consider whether they might be ideal resellers.

Graphic designers, marketing agencies, signwriters and allied professions might all be candidates for a reseller acquisition campaign. It’s worth looking beyond this, however, to specific reselling businesses which have a track record of building successful businesses out of reselling products from a range of sectors.

FREE DOWNLOAD: Top Print Industry Pain Points And How To Resolve Them

3. Make the offer compelling

The whole point of launching your print reseller programme is to add rocket fuel to your profit margins, but you’ll want to ensure that the offer is just as enticing for your resellers (otherwise they’ll feel there’s no point in getting involved).

Precisely where you set your reseller rates will depend on the products you sell, production costs, the level of reseller competition, and your overall business strategy. Remember, however, that the cost to you of using resellers should be more than offset by the increase in business and the savings you make from running a more streamlined operation that focuses more on printing and less on selling.

4. Be clear about how it works

A print reseller will want to be certain about the process of working with you. Take the time to create a portfolio of content that covers benefits, costs, rewards, payment structures and logistics.

A clear, simple, transparent partner package will make it much easier for resellers to sign up.

5. Make reselling easy

Reselling will usually happen via the reseller’s website, but here too you can make it easier to bring resellers onboard by offering template sites that they can ‘reskin’ with their own branding.

It’s not something a design agency or established reseller is likely to need (as they’ll no doubt already have an established template to use) but it could be valuable in attracting resellers who don’t have a website template, design skills or a website agency immediately to hand.

Offering tiered packages which include websites with increasingly advanced functionality can also help attract print resellers with a range of budgets and give you an additional source of income.

Beyond the website, you’ll also want to ensure that onboarding and the ongoing relationship are well managed, so the reseller always feels as though you’re invested in their success.

Talk to Soyang

Looking at launching your print reseller programme and need to prepare for the increase in print materials you’ll need? Talk to us.


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