Convert documents to PDF and save money on print and postage costs

Published: 12 July 2009
If you have comprehensive product brochures or printed catalogues you will already be aware that their maintenance, distribution and postage can be a costly overhead. A highly popular alternative is the production of "portable document files", more commonly known as PDF. PDF's are easy to create and once they have been converted they can be attached to an email, or saved onto a variety of storage devices including CD's and memory sticks, as well as uploaded to a company website where site visitors may view and download files at their own convenience.

In terms of plug-ins, Adobe Acrobat Reader is required to "read" the contents of PDF files, however the software is free to download from and can be installed on PC's, laptops and Macs in a few minutes. Most software products including the latest versions of Microsoft Word, Open Office Write, PhotoShop, etc. have the option to save out files into PDF format.

The advantage of the "electronic document" is that it is easier to share and update compared with traditional paper based versions. Consider a price increase or reduction of 10% across an entire product line. A printed catalogue would need to be re-printed each time a change was required, or a new product is launched or an obsolete product is removed.

Electronic brochures can be updated within minutes and available to download and re-distribute instantly. A simple email alert to all customers on your mailing list to inform them of the new changes could potentially save thousands on printing and postage costs. With the increase of portable devices such as iphones and netbooks, instant access to information is becoming easier and easier. PDF documents can be downloaded to any one of these devices in the click of a few buttons and accessed on demand and on the move.

Similarly time consuming administrative documents such as invoices and receipts can be converted to PDF and emailed to customers who can either print them or save them electronically.

Today the "paperless office" model is being adopted by more and more businesses in an effort to become more considerate of the environment and the detrimental impact of printing and copying.

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- Seran Bond

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