With hindsight writing this guide may not have been the most sensible thing to do because it has now spawned a whole new series of click charge cons that I am having to deal with on a daily basis. It really is a case of buyer beware and try to avoid long contracts that you will be locked in to.
Click charges are the greatest bone of contention when leasing digital printers and copiers.
This has not been helped by unscrupulous operators using slight of hand to get you to sign up to a contract which you subsequently cannot get out of.
TAKE NOTE: A single click is an A4 sheet or smaller fed into the copier long edge first. Anything larger than an A4 sheet fed into the copier long edge first (and yes that does include an A4 sheet fed short edge first) is 2 clicks. To the best of my knowledge this is true for every copier company and every 3rd party supplier in the world.
- CON 1
What many unscrupulous sales persons are saying goes something like this:
Customer: How much is it per click?
Sales Person: 6p
Customer: Is that whether it is A3 or A4?
Sales Person: Yes!
Customer: Are you sure?
Sales Person: Yes, I guarantee that no matter what you put through this machine you will not pay more than 6p per click.
Technically the sales person is not lying because it IS 6p per Click whether it is A3 or A4; Just if it is A3 there are 2 clicks instead of 1 meaning that an A3 sheet is costing you 12p not 6p, (the same as an A4) which is what I believe is implied.
If you do not believe me, try asking a sales person how many clicks an A3 sheet uses and see what answer you get. If they say 1 then get it in writing because quite a lot of single meter machines automatically count 2 clicks when you put an A3 through them.
- CON 2
"It is 6 pence per A3 and 3 pence per A4."
These charges are unrealistically low, remember the golden rule; If an offer sounds too good to be true then it usually is.
In this case they are again telling you the truth, but omitting to tell you that the charge is based on the manufacturers toner yield (number of copies that you are expected to get out of a toner cartridge).
Most toner yields are based on a coverage of 5%. Office copiers that do not print out complex graphics may very well exceed the cartridge yield, but the vast majority of high usage digital copiers are used in the graphic arts industry which uses much more toner per click.
If you use a cartridge before you are supposed to then you will be charged for any additional cartridges on top of your standard click charge.
As a company that has been supplying digital copiers for some time, we know that there is not one single colour copier out there where we could break even on a 3 pence click. If the click is so low then it is either based on consumable yield, it excludes consumables or there is a very high lease/service contract charge.
Some sales companies are quoting as little as 2 pence per click. Once you have bought the machine however you find out that the service contract is not with the company that you purchased the machine off and that they tell you to contact the manufacturer for you service contract. The manufacturer then charges you a minimum of 6 pence and the seller just tells you that it is nothing to do with them and that the manufacturer must have put their price up.
I will keep updating this guide as I discover other tricks but I would advise everybody to check the small print before signing the contract.
- CON 3
"It is 2 pence per A3 and 1 pence per A4."
Yes, they really are offering 1 penny a click - If you buy paper from them at inflatory prices, you get full yield out of your toner and you get all of your "High Frequency Service Items (HFSI)" to End Of Life.
PS Only around 5% of HFSI's get to end of life, the rest you pay for in full; and there are many. Futhermore, out of all our customers, only 1 gets anywhere near the Manufacturer's toner yield and they are usually at least 1000 clicks out.
Most of you will know that ebay is the cheapest place to buy consumables for printers and we know that ebay prices are ususally a bit less that prices from Xerox Direct. If you work out the prices of toner, cleaning webs, waste toner containers, waste developer containers and print copy cartridges. Add to that the cost of running repairs and you will end at a much higher average price per click than some of these companies are offering therefore it stands to reason that they are not being honest about their pricing strategy.
There are some good genuine new deals at the moment such as the DC700 where xerox are offering a genuine 4.5 pence click but you have to have the £40,000.00 in place to buy the machine in the first place and be prepared for the price to go up as the machine ages. This seems to be the favoured option at the moment: Sell a 25K machine for 40K and use the remaining 15K to offer cheap clicks for a couple of years.