Why are Printers so Cheap, when Printer ink is so Expensive?


There are adverts everywhere for cheap printers on sale for around $40, these printers come with printer ink cartridges. But new cartridges cost on average $20 to buy when your printer ink runs our; how is this possible?

Okay, it may be the case that cartridges that come with a printer are smaller, in that they do not contain as much ink as a normal cartridge you would buy as a replacement. But still the huge price discrepancy between a new printer and a new printer ink cartridge seems crazy.

A Loss for a Gain
With cheap printers it’s all about the hook. It’s a natural human reaction to be drawn to an item if it looks like a good deal. In current times, when people’s finances can still be in a state of flux, most people when going to purchase a printer from Konica Minolta, will take a look at products at the lower cost end of the market. If these products seem to have good functionality people are tempted to buy.

Printer manufacturers know that this will happen and will even make slight losses on the printers in order to sell larger numbers of the product. But why is this the case?

What is the Gain?

You may think, how can it ever pay to make a loss on an item to sell it? It’s not as simple as profit or loss on a printer; the market is more complicated than this. Think about it, once you have bought one of these really good value printers, where are you going to buy replacement cartridges when your ink runs out? From the same manufacturers that sold you the printer of course. This is what the manufacturers are counting on; they have you hooked into their printer so know you have to spend a fortune buying ink cartridges from them. This is where they are looking to make their money.

Does This Always lead to Profits for Manufacturers?

It would seem that selling printers at a cheaper price to lure consumers in does work, otherwise why would the manufacturers continue to do it? They advertise to their customers all the reasons why they should make sure to use the manufacturers own ink cartridges; in the first couple of purchases you have already spent more on printer ink than you did on purchasing the printer in the first place.

Of course this has led to people simply buying a new printer every time the ink runs out; doing this gives them the additional benefit of being able to keep their printer up to date. This seems like an incredible waste of materials when people can end up having two or three printers that they aren’t using simply because they do not have any ink. It’s the ultimate comment on the disposable society in which we live, and it doesn’t seem as though it’s going to change any time soon as manufacturers continue to work on making the best profits that they can.

Also Check: 8 Ways 3D Printing can be used to create Amazing and Incredible Things


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