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Predicting print trends for 2024

LG Davis has been offering quality print solutions across the UK for over 60 years. Based in Birmingham, the company has seen the sector change immensely over the years from technological advancements to a growth in services and evolving finishing processes.


Managing Director Liz Smith is one of only a handful of female leaders in the industry and has been at the forefront of driving the sector forward in the Midlands.


Here we look at what trends we expect to see in the printing sector for 2024, from what the industry will be focusing on to new innovations customers should be aware of for the year ahead.


Flexibility


As with any business the printing industry has had to flex and continually change over the past few decades to keep up with demand. Next year will be no different as marketeers continue to crave the latest innovations and trends to target new markets.


Having a fluidity to their business model which allows businesses to move with technology will see an increasing flexibility in the offer printers have from digital envelope printing and contour cutting to personalised database printing and innovative labelling methods. Expect to see further advancements in the way you use print.


Customer service will be key 



A recent study for Accenture found 47% of customers felt under valued because of poor service. There are many pressures on printing companies these days but it is clear that customers are going to require businesses to not only deliver on product and price but also good customer service as well.


Services which continue to support and move with the times, such as LG Davis’ stock and store service allowing businesses to bulk buy items to benefit from the cost reductions while having the items stored until they need them, will become more mainstream as businesses look to provide useful extras. There will also be an increase in innovation in finishes and services as the fast paced increase in technology continues to grow.


Embracing AI within the market 


AI or Artificial Intelligence continues to grow in popularity year on year and 2024 isn’t likely to be any different.


If the industry is to flourish then it will need to embrace AI and look at ways to work with it. From automatically enabling a machine or system to learn and improve from experience to speeding up production AI is a valuable resource in helping print works to meet ongoing challenges and develop its workforce and technology.


A recent Print Week poll found that only 9% of respondents were currently using AI but with 12% planning to in the future expect the use of AI to grow in 2024.


Durability will become increasingly important in print


Following the COVID pandemic there was a rise in demand for encapsulation services which created hardwearing, sanitised finishes for printed materials. This awareness of sanitisation and durability will continue to grow in 2024 with more and more businesses looking to use hard wearing finishes such as lamination and encapsulation to create the sanitise friendly resources customers and businesses are looking for.


Building in resilience


Figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) at the beginning of 2023 showed that the number of skilled tradespeople working in the print sector fell by 73% between 2006 and 2021, highlighting the ongoing labour shortage in the industry.


In 2024 the industry is going to need to address this crisis and look to build in resilience and ways to train the next generation of workers to support the print industry going forward. While automation gathers pace it means that it could be another period of immense change for the industry.


We are likely to see a rise in apprenticeships and calls for more to be done to show printing as an industry of the future. Print will always need skilled professionals and if the industry is to continue to grow then the sector needs to address the shortages of people seeing it as a career option and look to promote the industry more widely.


Demand for hyper-personalisation will increase 


Personalised printing is becoming more and more mainstream. With 90% of online businesses already investing in personalisation and 80% of customers claiming they are more likely to buy from brands that use personalisation it is a service we expect to see continuing to develop in 2024.


Expect more personalised printing materials from marketing to brochures with targeted messaging for key areas. Marketeers are becoming more savvy to the need to build trust through talking directly to customers and it is something that businesses are continuing to expect.


Ongoing shift from production to all-encompassing specialists


Printers will continue to need to diversify and advance their offering so that they are no longer seen as simply delivering a product but a one stop service. Expect printers to offer services which cover more than just printing as they tap into the need for full package solutions.

 

As a fast-paced industry driven by technological advancements 2024 will be a busy year for the printing sector.

An exciting time for businesses and customers alike we are going into an era where technology and automation is advancing and printers will need to be at the forefront of offering the all encompassing solutions businesses require.


Unsure how to update your print offer for 2024?


If you need help with your print or office supplies, need inspiration for your next project or just want to find out more about LG Davis then do get in touch with our team at sales@lgdsolutions.co.uk or call 0121 430 9000.

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