When I started shooting paid jobs back in 2007, I would make my prints at Walmart or Walgreen’s. Basically, any place that would develop my FujiColor X-TRA 800 ISO film. Yes, this young, handsome photographer began his career shooting 35mm film. I’ll share about about my film days in a future blog, but for now let’s get back something that will benefit you.
You can probably guess what local photo lab I’m going to suggest to you by the giant screenshot at the top of the post — but let me tell you why it’s the best option for you and your business.
First, the pricing they offer on their prints and enlargements are extremely affordable. You can easily turn a profit with a good mark-up on your print sale prices. I currently use Costco’s 4×6 luster prints for flyers or advertising material.
Second, Costco is quick, even with on-site orders. I usually make all print orders online via their Costco Photo Center Website and pick then up next day.
There have been some instances when I have taken a USB to print from their kiosks and the waiting period is less than an hour. I’ll place my order, then go get myself a slice of pizza and before you’re even done with your slice of pizza your prints are ready. I’ll give you a great example on how Costco has saved my butt. Last November I had a client who last minute chose to add an engagement session to their wedding packages. My engagement sessions come with a 16×24 Print. Usually you would do an engagement session six months in advance but in this situation, we shot it on the same month of the wedding. At the time I was a Pro-member with Pictage.com so they had free overnight shipping so, I wasn’t too worried about ordering my print from my usual lab located in California. We scheduled the session and completed it, we went through the image selection process and it was done. I placed an overnight order via Pictage five days before the wedding day thinking it would be in just before the wedding. Well, guess what? — it wasn’t. I went with plan B, which was making a poster print from Costco. So the night before the wedding I placed the order and went to pick it up hours before the wedding. Since it was a poster print on matte it was able to stand alone on easel. I let my clients know about the situation, and since my clients are paying for premium product I still gave them the original high quality print from Pictage.
Third, they make some legit canvas prints. Although Costco’s canvas don’t compare to canvases from White House Custom Colour or CG Pro Prints in quality, they are sufficient for the starting photographer or clients ordering themselves a canvas after purchasing the digital file printing rights. I currently have a Costco’s 11×14 canvas hanging in my office which I use to show my clients if they want to make a canvas print locally. Costco would be their best bet for a good quality print. I recommend Costco’s photo lab to my clients looking to make extra prints aside from the print orders they have from my professional lab.
Look into the site more, and if you feel Costco can be beneficial to your business sign up for their membership here. You can only order prints from this whole-sale store with membership. If you have any other questions about ordering prints locally, please feel free to contact me and I will answer any questions.