Printing As Service In An I-Café
Computer rental used to be enough for i-café to survive as a business. This is especially true for gaming i-cafés at the time when the rent charges range from PhP20.00 to 30.00 per hour. But sad to say, these days when the prevailing rates is between PhP10.00 to 15.00 per hour only, an i-café owner has to find other sources of revenue and printing service is one of first to come to his mind. Printing as service in an i-café is logical and feasible because the cost of investment for a good digital printer is not that much and demand for such service come in naturally from his existing customers doing research, encoding and other related activities. Having been in the business myself, I have seen some i-cafés with enough volume of printing jobs such that the revenue from the service can account to as much as 20 to 30% of their gross revenues.
The printing service that I am talking about is basically the production of hardcopies of the encoded data and images that an i-café customers worked on either in i-cafés or in their homes and offices. This is the black and white printing of documents using inkjet or laser printers on a bond paper which was averaging PhP5.00 per page in the past but is now reported to be costing as low as PhP1.00 per page nowadays. Printing color images in ordinary bond paper or some cases using photo paper is also common nowadays in some i-cafés. While some i-cafe owners are happy with their added income from their printing services, others are just not so lucky because competition has really pulled down their profit margins in the venture.
The above situation necessitates that an i-café owner who had already invested on a good digital printing equipment find some other services that he can offer and do for his customers. While many of the additional printing jobs require knowledge and skills that may not be readily available in the current manpower of an i-café, there are many applications and templates available on the net to make the job easier for anyone who want to engage in them. Just google them and I am sure you will find some help that you need to be able to serve the needs of your customers. And as a last advice, be sure to discount printing charges when the volume of the job warrants so that your customers will keep coming back for more printing jobs.