There are no prizes for guessing that colour till rolls are simply standard till rolls that have been manufactured from coloured paper. They come in various formats such as singly ply plain paper through to 3 ply thermal rolls in many different dimensions. The rolls are used in numerous different devices such as cash registers, receipt printers and credit card terminals and are primarily used for issuing receipts to customers. Although receipts are the most common use the market is considerably larger than this consisting of vending & ticket machines, kiosks, betting slips and pretty much any business or device where a customer receives a ticket or even printed information from. For the remainder of this article we will use retail and receipts due to their dominance in the market as a way of illustration.
Why don't retailers choose cheaper plain white paper?
Most business possess a carefully researched and considered brand which they wish to enforce to consumers on a regular basis and of course this is no different for retailers. Stores are especially visible to existing and potential customers due to their physical presence on the high street and it is this high visibility which encourages retailers to use colour as a major part of their branding. Think about your local high street for one moment and pay particular attention to the shop frontage and the signage that they use, very colourful isn't it?
Quite simply businesses use coloured receipts to enforce their brand image to customers and to make their receipt stand out from the many. So why is this important? To be honest on its own it probably is not, but as part of a larger branding scheme it adds to the consistency of the shopping experience and can leave the customer with a higher impression of the brand which can in turn create loyalty. Without going deeply into the subject of branding and loyalty this is exactly what the retailers want to achieve, making their stores stand out from the crowd and creating a loyal customer base that return regularly and spend more.
Are there any other benefits?
Security can be a secondary factor when considering coloured till rolls but is only a minor feature in relation to branding. Colour rolls are more expensive and harder to source making it more difficult for fraudsters to manufacture counterfeit receipts. Large retailers have rolls manufactured to the exact colour specification of their brand making it extremely expensive for fraudster to obtain the correct colour rolls. This in conjunction with modern till systems with advanced transaction look up facilities makes it almost impossible and cost prohibitive for fraudsters to attempt producing fake receipts.
Finally retailers may wish to easily identify copies of receipts when using 2 or 3ply paper and as a result colour is often used to distinguish between the different copies. A good example of this is when a credit card machine prints two copies of the same receipt, one for the retailer and one for the customer.
But surely the cost is prohibitive to small businesses?
In reality the costs are not as steep as you would think and the costs are coming down all the time as more businesses adopt this practice.
If you elect to go the way of the retail giants and go for a brand specific colour then you are likely to be asked for a deposit and asked to agree to a minimum order quantity. The actual cost of the rolls is dependant on your commitment with regards to the number of rolls you agree to purchase. The more you purchase the lower the unit value.
A different and less costly approach is to purchase popular standard colour that a number of suppliers now keep in stock. These tend to be blue yellow and pink but vary between suppliers and are only marginally more expensive than their plain white equivalents. When you add up this against the additional cost per receipt the cost is actually very small.
Colour till rolls, are they right for my business?
If your business has branding that uses colour effectively or you have premium products or services that you want to give off a shopping experience of quality then colour rolls could be right for you.
On the other hand looking at this from a non marketing perspective, will colour till rolls improve your bottom line considering that they cost more and the customer won't be issued the receipt until they have already purchased?
What else is there to consider?
So you now have colour till rolls, what else do you need to think about? One last thing you should deliberate is pre printed till rolls. These are colour or plain white rolls with your design pre printed on the reverse. Perhaps you will enhance your brand further, self promote with offers and discounts, display company information or perhaps you will generate revenue from third party advertising.
Deciding whether colour rolls or pre printed are right for your business is a simple process of working our whether the additional costs outweigh the returns in brand awareness, return customer visits, additional revenue and information promotion.