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Advantage Customer Series – Kathleen Boyer

Wednesday, May 2nd, 2018 | MICR Toner and Check Printing | No Comments

Kathleen Boyer, Office Administrator – Harris & Ruth Painting

Harris & Ruth Painting is one of the top commercial and industrial painting contractors located in West Covina, California. Kathleen Boyer, the company’s Office Administrator, was looking for a way to save her company money.

She found Advantage Laser Products online while doing her research on check printing. Learning how to print your own checks with a magnetic ink can be a tricky process, and so Kathleen decided to call Advantage for help.

“I called and spoke with John Miller, who educated me on the MICR font and ink requirements, and then worked with me to make sure my MICR font and placement was perfect, and my ink strength was perfect,” she said. “It was such a positive experience.”

Kathleen continues to enjoy personalized customer service from Advantage – she says she loves working with Advantage because, “they work hard, like me.”  But most importantly, printing checks in-house brings Harris & Ruth Painting substantial savings every year.

About Advantage Laser Products

Headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, Advantage Laser Products specializes in business checks and check printing supplies, including MICR tonerblank check paperenvelopeslaser printers and more. For over 30 years, Advantage Laser Products provided high-quality products and exceptional customer service every day. Advantage has been focused on offering products made in the USA, when possible. Each product purchased at Advantage Laser Products is backed by our one-year satisfaction guarantee, and many qualify for free shipping within the contiguous U.S. Visit Advantage today at www.advlaser.com or email us at info@advlaser.com for more information.

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Order early – UPS and FedEx are slowing down during record breaking holiday season

Tuesday, December 19th, 2017 | Miscellaneous | No Comments

This year UPS has forecast to ship more than 30 million packages daily for Christmas rush. FedEx predicts it will move a record-breaking 317 million shipments between Black Friday (November 27) and Christmas Eve.

That means things will slow down a bit. FedEx has not given us any notification that they will slow down, but based on what we are seeing from UPS, it would be safe to assume your packages might take an extra day (or two) for shipments this week. Our advice – Order early!

Despite our “Give the Gift of Toner” Christmas promotion, we are not experiencing a mad Christmas rush for MICR toner and blank check paper, so our shipments are shipping the same day ordered as always.

This is what we received from UPS…

All UPS 2nd Day Air® and UPS 3 Day Select® packages shipped on December 18 and 19 will require an additional day in transit. UPS 3 Day Select packages shipped on December 19 will be scheduled for delivery on December 26.

UPS 3 Day Select: Monday, December 18 (delivery on Friday, December 22)
UPS 2nd Day Air: Wednesday, December 20 (delivery on Friday, December 22)
UPS Next Day Air®: Thursday, December 21 (delivery on Friday, December 22)

Order online at www.advlaser.com and all orders placed before 4:00pm will ship the same day – as per usual.

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Business Checks Survey Report

Thursday, November 30th, 2017 | MICR Toner and Check Printing | No Comments

Advantage Laser Products conducted a survey to determine the dominant business function for checks, the prevalence of MICR-printing of checks by U.S. businesses, and the prevalence of check fraud and the use of positive pay check fraud prevention.

Check payment solutions play a critical role in the financial management of most organizations. Checks are intrinsic to the behavior of U.S. businesses and government agencies, and most organizations have structured their entire treasury management infrastructure around checks, from paying invoices to matching transactions. We believe there are three main reasons for why over 87% of our survey respondents’ organizations continue to use checks:

  1. Checks simply contain a lot more information than electronic payments, and may even have entire invoices attached to them. Checks simply contain a lot more information than electronic payments, and may even have entire invoices attached to them.
  2. Checks offer a cash flow advantage, by delaying the payment while the check is in the mail and during authentication process, often translating to days if not weeks of additional liquidity and interest income on cash.
  3. And with the use of very effective check fraud prevention solutions, such as positive pay, checks are also a safer payment solution than electronic payments, which are subject to hacking and cyber theft.

Until the security is enhanced in prevailing electronic payment methods, and an external, regulatory action forces a rapid transition to electronic transactions, many U.S. businesses will continue to use checks as the preferred payment solution.

Click here to view the full Survey Report  

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10 Tips for Improving Customer Experience and Growing Your Business

Tuesday, November 28th, 2017 | MICR Toner and Check Printing, Miscellaneous | No Comments

Creating great experiences for customers should be a top goal for every business. If you can offer an amazing experience, you can create repeat customers, increase sales and more effectively market your business in a number of different ways. Here are some tips from members of the online small business community for creating great customer experiences and growing your business in other ways.

  1. Optimize Your Website’s User Experience and Boost SEO
    1. Search engines don’t just look at keywords when determining how to rank websites. They also want to call attention to sites that provide great user experiences. So by optimizing the user experience of your website, you can also boost your SEO. In this LeapGo post, Jason Corgiat offers seven ways to optimize that experience.

Click here to discover the other 9 Tips from SmallBizTrends.com 


 

ABOUT ADVANTAGE

Advantage Laser Products has been proudly supporting the needs of accounting and finance professionals for over 30 years. We offer pre-printed checks & envelopes and check printing supplies, such as MICR toner, check stock paper, MICR fonts and check printing software.

We understand that managing a company’s finances isn’t always easy. You can rely on Advantage to always stand by you and help you find smart solutions.

  • consultative, personalized support
  • fast turn-around
  • affordable, quality products

We are proud to deliver consistent customer satisfaction. Customers rave about the excellent customer service and report that Advantage goes above and beyond what is expected.

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New HP LaserJet P607, P608, P609 Series Includes Radical Design Change

Thursday, June 8th, 2017 | HP Toner, MICR Toner and Check Printing | 4 Comments

We just received the new HP LaserJet M608N printer. This is a radical internal redesign from the previous few generations of Enterprise Level HP LaserJet printers. The M608 and it’s sisters the M607 and M609 will be replacing the M604, M605, M606 models as the go-to networked work-group monochrome printer in the HP lineup.  This new line of printers now has three toner cartridges to choose from: CF237A (11,000 pgs), CF237X (25,000 pgs) and the CF237Y (41,000 pgs). As with previous generations, the lowest printer in the line, the M607 will not accept the two higher yield toner cartridges. The ability to accept the larger toner cartridges makes the operating costs much lower for the M608 and M609 series.

We are working on MICR Toner cartridges for the new series of toner cartridges. We don’t have an ETA of when the CF237A and CF237X MICR toner cartridges will be available. Stay tuned for more information…

Here are some pictures of the new P608n.

 


 

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CF217A MICR Toner for HP M102w Release

Tuesday, November 22nd, 2016 | MICR Toner and Check Printing | 1 Comment
HP CF217A MICR Toner Cartridge

HP CF217A MICR Toner Cartridge For HP M102w

Our CF217A MICR Toner Cartridge for the HP LaserJet M102w is in the final phases of quality assurance. We plan to release the New CF217A MICR Toner on December 5, 2016. The CF217A has a page yield of 1,600 pages. The MICR quality for printing checks is fantastic. Our CF217A MICR toner is a new MICR toner cartridge, not remanufactured. The CF217A MICR toner is compatible with the following HP Models: HP LaserJet M102w, M130fw MFP, M130fn MFP. The M102w uses a toner and an imaging cartridge. This new two cartridge system is something we’ve never seen from HP. In theory the two cartridge system should save you money, but in this case it really doesn’t. HP charges the same for this 1,600 page toner cartridge as they did for the 1,600 page CE285A used in the HP LaserJet P1102w (this was a single cartridge system). The imaging cartridge CF219A only needs to changed every 12,000 or once per 7.5 toner cartridges if you are printing 5% page coverage. Note, you don’t need a MICR imaging cartridge to print checks, just the MICR Toner Cartridge.

New HP CF217A MICR Toner Cartridge for M102w, M130fw, M130fn MFP  – 17A MICR – $120.00 (Includes Free Ground Shipping)

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HP Rebate Buy more. Save more.

Friday, March 11th, 2016 | HP Toner | No Comments
HP Buy more. Save more Toner Cartridge Rebate

HP Buy more. Save more Toner Cartridge Rebate

HP has a new rebate, “Buy more. Save more.” where the more you buy of original HP cartridges, the greater the rebate. Please note this rebate doesn’t apply to our new HP MICR Toner Cartridges, only new unmodified HP toner cartridges.

Offer
Buy $200 of Original HP Toner and receive a $20 Shell Gift Card, buy $300 of Original HP Toner and receive a $50 Shell Gift Card, or buy $500 of Original HP Toner and receive a $100 Shell Gift Card.

  • Limit of two (2) Shell Gift Cards per qualifying end-user customer address during the Promotion Period.
  • Original HP Toner must be purchased at the same time, on the same invoice during the Promotion Period.

Promotion Period
March 15–April 15, 2016

Download the Rebate PDF

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Advantage Laser Installs 21.8KW Solyndra Solar Array

Monday, January 11th, 2010 | Green Power | 7 Comments

Next week we begin installation of rooftop solar array on our MICR toner cartridge manufacturing facility in Atlanta, Georgia. The solar project has been broken into three arrays. We will start by installing Array #1 – a 21.8KW array that will produce 29,654 KW hours per year. This will only provide about 23% of the power we currently use. Once Arrays #2 and #3 are built the complete system will provide 70% of our power usage. Our goal will be to become power neutral meaning we produce 100% of the power we need. So after all 3 arrays are installed, we will have to decrease our power usage by 30% via increased efficiency e.g. LED lighting project (more on that later).
It Makes Environmental and Business Sense
The environmental benefits of solar power are obvious, the challenge is to operate as green as possible and still remain a viable business. I looked at solar a couple of years ago, but it was difficult to make the numbers work. The federal government was giving a 30% tax credit and the state (Georgia) had no incentive whatsoever. Several months ago Mark Bell with Empower contacted us about solar. He got us up to date on solar power legislation and incentives. Solar (green) power was included in the economic stimulus and recovery act of 2009. Now the federal government will pay the 30% as a grant up front and the state of Georgia will give an additional 35% tax credit towards a commercial solar installation. This made all the difference. The federal grant, means we don’t have to borrow as much money. The state also has a grant, but it is limited to $2.5 million and applications flooded the GEFA office. The rebate program was closed after just one day. So we’re going the tax credit route, which creates a challenge in itself. Sometimes I think the tax aspects of a solar array are much more complex than the technical ones. After calls to two accountants, the state and Empower, we determined the array would pay for itself in about five and a half years. Not bad, after that we’ll have an array with a 25 year life expectancy with free green power.
Solar Panels Made in the USA

Much of the solar PV (PhotoVoltaic) is dominated by China these days. We prefer to buy products made here in the USA when we can. Lucky for us, we have a white roof. Why should this matter? This allowed us to install a new innovative solar panel from Solyndra (made in Silicon Valley CA). Traditional PV uses a solid panel that is angled to the sun to maximize efficiency. But angled panel makes a great sail and therefore it requires a physical attachment and penetration through the roofing system or a heavy ballasting system.

Solyndra has a revolutionary solar panel that uses a series of tubes with space between them so that the wind passes right through them. The tubes on the Solyndra panel absorb the sunlight that is reflected off the white roof as well. The result is an array that can be installed in a fraction of the time and maximizes efficiency per square foot. The Solyndra panel costs about twice as much as a traditional panel, but the savings in installation time and mounting brackets make them come out about even. We are one of the first Solyndra customers in the Southeast for a technology that may revolutionize solar installations on many flat-roofed buildings.
Below is our rooftop layout of all 3 arrays. Array #1, on the far right, will be the first. Installation of all three was too much of a financial burden. Our goal is to install an array each year for the next 3 years.
Once Arrays 2 & 3 are complete, our system power will be a total of 65.9 KW producing 85,865 KW hours a year.

Selling Green Power vs. Decreasing Peak Load
As we harvest energy from the sun there are several ways to take advantage of it. One is to use the power ourselves with net metering. With net metering our meter “run backwards” when we’re producing more energy than we’re using. Otherwise it just slows down our meter. An advantage of net metering is we can use the solar array to decrease our peak load. Commercial customers are charged per KWH, but GA Power has incentives to business to smooth out their power usages by charging more, the higher your peak load. Each month a commercial business peak load rate is determined by the highest half hour power usage in the previous 11 months. The business about calculating peak load appears to be intentionally designed to be confusing. Empower has been working with us to see if they can decrease our peak load, and thus lower our overall price we pay per KWH.
Another option we have is to sell our “green” power to GA power through their Green energy buyback program. In this program, we take 100% of our green power and sell it to GA Power for $0.18 per KWH (about 4-5 cents per KWH than we pay for solar power). Right now GA Power’s green energy buyback is closed to new energy providers. The program is capped 1.5 Megawatts per year, which isn’t that much.
Increasing Efficiency
We are investigating a LED lighting project that would replace all of our existing florescent lights with new LED fixtures. Initial estimates indicate we would save about 15KW with the LED project. Empower is also consulting with us on the LED lighting project as well.
We are also replacing the largest two of our four HVAC units with new Trane High Efficiency units. We’ve also added rooftop motion detection and surveillance cameras. This will double to protect our solar array as well as our HVAC units from copper theft.

Installing a solar array has some exciting possibilities, but before you take the plunge, do the research. There is a lot to learn, especially about the tax code and what you can deduct and what you can’t. But in the end, if you have a long term perspective, investing in a solar array makes sense. Imagine the energy savings and decrease in air pollution that would be possible if every business with a roof filled them with solar panels.
I’ll be posting pictures of the array installation as I can. -Marvin Masson
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