This is a rerun blog post from April of this year on the old blog site, since that post there were many threads on the P4P forum related to the above topic.
Charging for Scans is an ongoing discussion on the Print4Pay Hotel members.
I believe the industry as a whole needs to start charging for scans especially with page volumes migrated downward. Ask yourself "why are we giving it away for FREE"!
It seems most dealers do not have a scan charge policy and those that do only implement it after they've realized that the scan volume is higher than the copy and print volume. Replacing parts in the document feeder is not costly, however the labor is, especially if you are out there once a month for document feeder issues and or replacing preventative maintenance parts for the document feeder. Check your page volumes, are they up or down?
So, what should be the cost for scanning or the "click charges", should it be based on a cps (cost per scan) with a minimum and overage every month, or should there be a annual cost with overages? I see it in the street everyday, more customers are wanting to scan to reduce their printed or copied page volumes. They are emailing, and LAN faxing more scanned documents. Problem is most of us are not capturing the revenue stream.
Would it be outrageous to charge a customer .015 per scan for a minimum of 1,000 scans per month ($15.00) with the overage at .008. Most of us have had the mindset that scanning should be less expensive the cost per page charge, and why is that? Just because someone said so. Scanning contracts could and should include parts, labor, training, reconnecting scan2email and scan2folder issues. Heck, we're getting those calls now under the cost per page contracts and doing them anyway.
I think the main issue is that most dealers and or Direct Branches have no clue how many scans are being made, and the ones who do are afraid that charging for every scan may chase business away. Ask yourself, where can you get a 50ppm color scanner with scan2email, scan2folder, 100 page document feeder and the capability of scanning 11x17. A quick search on the Internet produced no scanners with these capabilities!
We are solving a business problem for our customers, the problem is the cost of printing a page. The average document gets copied 19 times! *That's the problem, being copied 19 times! *source: Coopers & Lybrand
So, why can't we charge .01 or .015 per page to have the document scanned? Some will say well they can just get a desktop scanned and scan all they want, true they can however, most of these devices are TWAIN devices, most are not as fast as MFP's, and most can't be integrated for scan2email, scan2folder and third party software scanning solutions, also how many of these devices would they need? At 5,000 scans a month a customer would spend $50 - $75 per month, I'm sure the savings far out weighs copying the document 19 times and then migrating the document where they need to go.
Charging for Scans needs to happen in our industry now, or we run the risk of putting our selves out of business as paper becomes a less accepted means of communication.