The Zipcon Onlineprint Price Index (ZOPI) provides guidance on pricing in the printing industry. In March, we last compared developments on the market. The current analysis of the first half of 2021 shows what has happened since then.
In the last ZOPI we could see that Flyeralarm had reduced their prices for flyers by 11 percent around the turn of the year, against the general trend on the market; the price for the basic version of the business card was even reduced by over 50 percent. Whether adjustment of the strategy or for other reasons: Flyeralarm is apparently sticking to the reductions. The new prices have been maintained so far. Of the competitors, only the Red Print Group has also reduced its prices in the flyer segment to date: a reduction of 2.35 percent in March was followed by a further adjustment (-9.61 percent). The new company, which launched as a price maker in January, has thus followed up its announcements with action.
Three different strategies can be observed in the printing of business cards: Red Print Group has once again lowered its price, which was already drastically reduced in February. As a result, the price is now 55.73 percent lower than the starting value in January. At Saxoprint, the price of business cards has also fallen since January, by around 15 percent. Flyeralarm, on the other hand, has corrected the price, which fell sharply at the end of last year, back up by a quarter. The other suppliers are apparently pursuing a different strategy: unchanged prices are the motto here.
Apart from the aforementioned outliers, the overall movement in the print market across the segments is very manageable. This is particularly evident, for example, in the print price of brochures. Is there strategy or lethargy behind the unchanged prices? Or is the current price stability just the calm before the storm? One thing is clear: the price increases will (have to) come.
The printing industry is one of the last sectors that has so far only marginally passed on increased costs due to the pandemic to customers. While raw material costs seem to be rising unchecked, at the same time producers and suppliers have lower inventories in stock due to the pandemic. I recently explained this background in a guest article for the Buchreport (behind the paywall). We are receiving information from the market that the first companies are having to turn down orders in packaging because there is a shortage of printing stock. I am convinced that print will become more expensive. It will be exciting to see how companies in the printing industry adapt to the market. Perhaps the next ZOPI will be able to provide an answer.