Preparing for the HolidaysNovember 19th, 2009
It is that time of the year again and the rush is on.
Between now and December 24th more print orders will be placed than in the three months leading up to it. I would like to share some pointers and tips to make your holiday season as stress-free and productive as possible.
The Labs are Super Busy, Let’s Help Them by Being Prompt
Daily lab order volumes double if not triple during the holidays. Zenfolio partner labs have the best turnaround times in the industry while delivering consistent print quality and they are working extra hard on keeping this reputation during the holidays.
For example, the Mpix lab would often get the order printed, packaged, and shipped the same day it is placed. This means is that any request for changes needs to be sent within minutes of placing an order or it may not be possible to catch it in time.
By being prompt with your communications you will greatly improve the probability of catching orders in time to make any changes and corrections.
Approve Orders Quickly to Avoid Delays
If you have order Approval enabled in your price list (and we highly recommend you do that), you will have a chance to review orders placed and make changes before approving them for printing. While this gives you a way to make sure the order looks good, this also delays sending the order to the lab.
Remember: until you approve the order, it is not submitted for printing. Try to approve all orders as quickly as you can to avoid delays and meet buyer expectations for delivery times.
Upload Low Resolutions Files to Save Time
The order approval feature in your price list allows you to upload low resolution photos saving you time on uploading and retouching. This is particularly useful if you have a large event or have many files to present to a client.
After the order is placed, you will have a chance to upload new retouched files ready to be printed at high resolution. Then you can Approve the order and it will be sent for printing.
Mpix Holiday Delivery Cut-off Schedule
Please use the following chart as a reference for Mpix holiday delivery cut-off dates. Orders must be placed on and approved before the cut-off date to be delivered in time for the holiday.
Whenever in Doubt, Choose FedEx
During this super busy time of the year, we recommend using FedEx for shipping as much as possible. In our experience, FedEx has a better track record of delivering on time during busy holidays. The slightly higher cost of shipping pays off if you consider the disappointment of not receiving your package in time for the special day.
Mpix charges a flat fee for FedEx Next Business Day delivery of only $11.25, and it does not matter how big or how heavy your package is.
fotoflōt Christmas Shipping Cut-off Dates
fotoflōt has scheduled additional production run the week before Christmas to ensure timely arrival for all USPS Priority Mail packages. Orders that are placed by late night Wednesday, December 16th will print on Thursday and will ship on Friday, December 18th. These orders should arrive before Christmas.
They will also have the regular Monday/Tuesday production run so that orders placed by late night Sunday, December 20th will ship on Tuesday, December 22nd. These orders may not arrive in time for Christmas but will be delivered shortly after.
Enhance Your Holiday Mailings with Personalized Postage Stamps
Here is a tip that will help you keep your holiday mailings looking sharp and professional. If you are planning on mailing holiday greeting cards or sending thank you cards to your clients, personalize them with custom postage stamps from PictureItPostage.
You can place your studio logo, a family portrait, or any other image on a U.S. Postage Stamp in any denomination. The stamps are oversized and print in high quality with attention to details. You have to see a sheet of custom stamps for yourself to appreciate the impact they can make.
You will find stamps available for ordering from any of your images under Add to Cart | Specialty.
Have a great holiday season!