No two clients of hosted Web-to-print systems have precisely the same needs. Meeting those needs efficiently may require customization or using Web-to-print systems from different vendors — or both.

That point became clear in a panel presentation I led at the On Demand Conference and Exposition in Philadelphia last week: “How to Start Up and Rev Up Your Web-to-Print System.” Joining me on the panel were two members of the Xerox Premier Partners Global Network of leading print providers: Richard F. Rumpel, a former vice president of Digital Marketing, Sells Printing, who helped establish its first digital division, Traxion, and Scott Dubois, vice president, Cross-Media Services, Reynolds DeWalt.
In developing the new digital infrastructure for Traxion two years ago, Richard sought to enable a comprehensive range of services, even though some more sophisticated functions might not be used right away. So they acquired the full XMPie PersonalEffect suite, including its uStore Web-to-print system. They’ve used it to develop more than a dozen customer-specific Web-to-Print solutions, many of which required significant customization through XMPie APIs. His advice: aggregate workflows where possible, and try to determine in advance if customization work will pay off with high-volume business.

Reynolds DeWalt has been developing Web-to-print systems for a decade and now uses three different systems. For non-branded sites, they turn to Print Science, an easy-to-use, templated, software-as a service that enables sites to be up and running quickly. For client-branded sites with more complex, user-generated documents and more in-depth services, they deploy Xerox FreeFlow Web Services. And for customizing sites, they use XMPie uStore. Scott noted that sometimes the simplest solution drives the greatest revenue.

Have you been able to use a single Web-to-print system to service all of your clients, or do you, too, deploy multiple, specialized solutions?