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This is part 3 of my series on the Pros and Cons of Online Printing Sources. Read part one and two.

The printed business cards arrive

Forty-nine dollars and 6 days later, I received my business cards. Well, I received my first box of cards. The next day I received the second box of cards, and two days later I received a third box. Note, I only ordered two different sets of cards. So, they printed and shipped one order twice; which they did not charge me for.

As I mentioned previously, I had my 250 cards printed offset and DeAnne’s 100 printed digitally.

Offset printing left and digital printing right.
Offset printing left and digital printing right.

I could clearly tell the quality difference between the two. The color was a bit lighter on the digital cards. The typography on the digitally printed cards was definitely at a lower resolution than the offset printed cards. However this is to be expected, and certain design elements are going to suffer more with digital printing then others. Shown above is a detail of the word “DESIGN” from each card.

Not quite perfect

The big problem was that on all the cards the “1” at the end of the zip code was cut off. I went back and examined my online proof, as it was still available by logging into my account. The “1” looked fine onscreen.

DeAnne's card, showing the cut off 1 in the zip code
DeAnne's card, showing the cut off 1 in the zip code

Calling customer service

So I called customer service. I spoke with Kenneth and he told me that the problem was with my file type, and that it had something to do with the eps file. I reminded him that I used their provided template. He said that it had nothing to do with the template, it’s just that when they receive eps files there tends to be one pixel dropped off one or more sides unless you do a work around.

He explained the work around (adding a clear bounding box that is larger than any of elements on the card); and I submitted a new file.

Kenneth told me he would talk with his supervisor about getting new cards made for no additional fees. I got a call back within hours from Kenneth saying he did get the approval to reprint the cards.

So, they definitely took care of the situation, but I thought it was poor that:

  1. They are accepting eps files knowing they have a problem with those types of files. I don’t understand why they don’t build the work around into the template file.
  2. The CSR was unable to make the decision on the spot to reprint. Their web site says satisfaction guaranteed, and they did come through. But I was definitely mad thinking I may have cards that I really couldn’t use, and that maybe they were not going to reprint for free. I’ll repeat again, that they did, in the end reprint the cards for free but I was surprised he had to go get permission and call me back.
  3. Because of the reprinting, I lost a lot of time. In this case it was not critical, but many times we’re choosing to print online because of the turn around times and if jobs need to be reprinted, this benefit is lost.

Read the next post: my final impressions on the reprinted business cards.

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