Elevate Customer Satisfaction With Cloud-Based Print Technologies

A recent study from IDC shows that 46% of businesses are looking to move to cloud-based printing and/or print management in the near future. Interestingly, this applies equally to both small- and medium-sized businesses and large enterprises.

Cloud-first technology strategies have become commonplace in businesses of all sizes, as the cloud has redefined the way businesses and consumers store and share information, and access digital tools. It continues to grow in demand as businesses shift to a digital-first economy. What’s the allure? Cloud technology offers businesses exponentially higher levels of efficiency, flexibility and security compared to on-premises alternatives.  

This is because the cloud offers the ability to store massive amounts of data while scaling to business needs and can be used for a variety of purposes, from storage and data analytics to supporting new software and infrastructure. In addition, data in the cloud is stored within large data centers and backed up in multiple locations, creating a more secure landscape that is more difficult for threat actors to infiltrate. 

These benefits, among others, point to why global cloud infrastructure spending is projected to reach $118 billion by 2025 and 90% of large enterprises have adopted a multi-cloud infrastructure already. Furthermore, 48% of tech companies invest in cloud computing technologies, and according to the 2022 Thales Data Threat Report, 60% of the world’s corporate data is stored in the cloud. 

While the benefits of cloud storage and software are clear, it’s less well known that cloud technology can strengthen and simplify print infrastructure. Today’s cloud solutions can provide print-optimizing capabilities to any print environment, from small companies to large enterprises. 

Leading dealers recognize that these solutions align with their customers’ cloud-first strategies and provide extended beyond-the-box capabilities. Customers appreciate the enhanced, proactive approach to security that cloud offers bring, with greater protection across the entire print environment—from the device to the document and everything in between. Cloud-based service solutions also benefit both dealers and their customers, bringing impressive insights that improve service, simplicity and agility.

Device and fleet management  

Innovative technologies such as cloud and edge computing, as well as advancements in 5G, allow businesses to better monitor devices in the field. For example, cloud-based print fleet management solutions enable dealers to maintain their customers’ print infrastructure remotely from one integrated tool. This saves dealers the time and cost of travel for routine maintenance and upgrades, while improving the customer experience. 

Today’s work environments are more dispersed and diverse than ever before. And while print remains a core component of how customers communicate and conduct business, the management of the devices that enable it must adapt to evolving requirements and processes. 

Customer frustration builds alongside device downtime—as they wait for service technicians to make onsite visits to configure, upgrade or fix devices. The right cloud-based fleet management tool can make premise-based management a thing of the past, and usher in a new era of greater security, visibility and control over your customers’ fleets.

This level of visibility, combined with device performance data, can detect and even predict anomalies and failures. For dealers, this translates into rapid, proactive device repair by catching issues before they become costly failures, minimizing customer downtime and unnecessary service runs.  

The advantages go far beyond just ensuring a device is functional. This data can be used to determine when supplies are running low and ensure that they are replenished to avoid downtime. Dealers can also use device data to provide options for customers to streamline energy usage and create more efficient queuing of print jobs, helping them achieve their sustainability goals.

Predictive analytics 

One of the most common and unavoidable threats to business success is unplanned downtime. Downtime can stem from multiple factors, including human error, device failure, system failure, or a lack of supplies. Regardless of the cause, unplanned downtime can be costly. 

The key to mitigating this loss is transitioning from reacting to each issue as it arises, to proactively servicing devices before a problem occurs.

Through cloud-based predictive services, dealers can evaluate and act on a device before it fails and disrupts operations – and often before the customer even realizes there was an issue in the first place. With higher uptime afforded by predictive service, dealers can prioritize what matters most: increasing their operational effectiveness, profitability, and the customer experience. 


In today’s rapidly changing security environment, where bad actors are leveraging emerging technologies to launch more rapid and sophisticated cyberattacks than ever, ensuring that customer data is secure is more critical than ever. Storage and computing in the cloud is often more secure than on-premise alternatives. 

This increased security comes down to a few factors. First, the servers and storage are housed in dedicated, offsite locations with both physical and virtual security built in. These data centers are extremely secure, often employing multiple layers of physical security to restrict access to only those who absolutely need it. The data is also encrypted, ensuring that only people allowed to access it have the means to do so. Finally, data is distributed among multiple locations to make sure that businesses have access to their data even if a single data center has a failure. 

Managing fleets via the cloud also boosts security. Firmware upgrades and device settings can be managed remotely, making it easier and faster for dealers to keep customers’ devices up to date and secure.

All these features combined make a more complex landscape for threat actors to attempt to perpetrate their attacks. 

Elevate your customers to the cloud

Customers are overwhelmed with options for innovative technologies that promise to uplevel efficiency. That’s why dealers need a partner to help them navigate the breadth of cloud-based solutions, working hand in hand to enable them to bring customers the best solutions. 

When considering a partner, dealers should look for one that offers access to vertical industry expertise as well as educational resources and consultants. Collaborating with experts equips dealers with a greater understanding of the trends affecting their customers, enabling them to become a differentiated strategic technology partner.

A new reality of business is upon us. Now is the time for dealers to expand differentiation through offerings that drive customers’ cloud-first strategies. 

Clark Bugg is sales director for the North American copier channel, Lexmark.