How to Avoid Getting “Nickel and Dimed” by Your Copier Company

One complaint that I hear when talking to potential customers is they thought they were signing up for one thing, and ultimately it changed with their current vendor.   This has led them to feel used and they are motivated to make a switch because it made their former copier company seem dishonest.  Here are a few of the ways this can happen, and how you can make sure it doesn’t happen to you on your next copying machine purchase here in the Denver area.

Contract rates are raised throughout the contract.  It is fair to expect that the rates would stay consistent with inflation, however I have seem many people have a 12% per year increase because that number was written into the contract.  If we look at a practical example, say when you sign up you are paying $100 for 10,000 prints (very good price…) that would be $157 for the same 10,000 prints in year five.  $.0157 is not a good price for 10,000 prints on the market…  The extra $57 a month in year 5 works out to about $700.00! What can you do?  1) Try and get the “this contract can be raised by x % per year completely or 2) negotiate a lower and more fair rate.  Most companies will say “It only says that we “can,” not that we “will”…” In all my dealings, any company that “can” raise rates “will” raise rates.  It could be $57 times 100 copiers in the fleet from that year times 12 months or $70,000 of additional profit for that company.  In this economy, people are not going to be nice and let it slide.

A second way to get nickel and dimed is that the providers of service will often charge “consumable instll fees” … The best way to avoid these sorts of fees is to learn how to install the consumables into your machine.  For most customer this simple 5 minute learning exercises could save them $300 to $500 per year.

Another way to get “quartered and dollared” (much more expensive than nickel and dimed) would be signing up for 5 year leases and flipping the equipment out anywhere sooner than 3 months left on the contract.  Often the rep will say that the swap out is free, what they mean is that it is “included.”  By included, that means it was included in your price. 

Getting caught up on the cost per click OR the equipment cost rather than the TOTAL COST OF OWNERSHIP is also a mistake that can cost thousands.  People will either get so enamored with a $.008 per print that they’ll pay $7,000 more for the equipment or so enamored with a $5,000 equipment cost that they’ll spend $.02 per click.  The key is to add up both given your expected volume and your needs.

If you are looking for help to ealuate a proposal you have gotten and would like a competitive quote, please give us a call for a free lease evaluation.