5 Ways Your Small Business Can Effectively Utilize 3D Printing

Over the past few years, 3D printing has become one of the most talked-about technologies as companies of all shapes and sizes are realizing the benefits it can bring to many of their processes. In fact, those firms that aren’t embracing it are quickly losing their competitive edge. Not only does it require minimal human resources, but it also boosts efficiency and reduces your overhead costs.

From architectural model making to creating prototypes and merchandise, there are various ways that 3D printing can give your small business a competitive edge. To learn more, read on for five ways your small business can effectively utilize 3D printing.

1. Model-Making

3D model making

One of the most significant benefits of utilizing 3D printing is the ability to create effective models. These 3D models are essential to design tools for those in architecture, building, and any other industry that needs you to articulate the vision clearly. By breaking down communication barriers and eliminating any guesswork or potential perception issues, these 3D models make it easier to sell potential clients on your projects as you will all be on the same page. After all, they are much more convincing than sketches on paper.

Moreover, 3D printing is also successful at creating industrial models for facilities such as manufacturing companies, warehouses, and water processing plants. No matter the size or complexity of your project, the best 3D printing company will ensure that you have the perfect model for your business purposes.

2. Prototypes

In addition to making effective models, 3D printing is also ideal for small businesses that need to create cost-effective prototypes. Developing prototypes has always been a crucial part of any manufacturing process; however, in the past, it required a significant amount of time, effort, and resources, not to mention high costs. Luckily, 3D printing is changing that, and small businesses stand to benefit greatly.

Large corporations have been profiting from this technology for years; it has only been more recently that smaller businesses are able to take advantage of it. Accordingly, opting to 3D print your prototypes means having a faster turnaround time, even at a reduced cost. One of the significant benefits of the prototype process is that it enables a smoother workflow and can rapidly handle changes and iterations. In other words, even an extensive process of testing can be done quickly with 3D printing.

3. Merchandise

While 3D printing can make a significant difference in a company’s ability to quickly and efficiently create a product, in some cases, the 3D printed item may actually be the product. For example, a jewelry 3D printing service can help you to produce exquisite jewelry and wearable accessories. In fact, 3D printing is shaking up the jewelry industry, as so many designers recognize the potential.

For starters, you never have to worry about inventory issues when you are 3D printing your jewelry, as you can quickly produce small batches and continue creating designs in accordance with demand. Additionally, if a customer wants to customize a piece of your jewelry, 3D printing makes it a lot easier to fulfill their wishes.

For many jewelry designers, 3D printing enables a level of design freedom that is different from any other form of production. As you don’t need to take into account the constraints of mold creation when it comes to 3D printing, unlimited design possibilities exist, enabling the designer to experiment with complex concepts. What’s more, 3D printing is a quicker and more cost-effective manufacturing technique than manually crafting jewelry molds. And many of these benefits of producing jewelry extend to the production of other 3D printed merchandise.

4. Marketing Purposes

Whether you are gifting them to your best customers or handing them out at trade shows, it is always an excellent idea to have physical items as part of your marketing materials. By having material objects, potential clients are able to physically connect with your company and engage with the brand in a much deeper way. This, in turn, is a surefire way of increasing the likelihood that they will remember your firm as this kind of experience helps you stand out from your competitors.

Some potential ideas for 3D printed marketing merchandise include branded USB sticks and mugs, 3D key-rings, scale models, or figurines. However, there are no limits to what you can create, so you can be sure to print something that is an accurate representation of your brand. There is no denying that 3D printing is going to play a significant role in the future of marketing, so join the ranks of Coca-Cola and Nescafe and start using it to get the word out about your company.

5. Packaging

Another way small businesses can utilize 3D printing is by using it to create packaging. As is the case in many other industries, 3D printing is disrupting the packaging industry because of its incredible potential, low cost, and rapid prototyping. Furthermore, 3D printing makes it possible to create individual packaging designs that are manufactured specifically for customers. This is especially useful in the food and beverage industry, where customized items are highly desired.

What’s more, 3D printing can assist small businesses in designing more environmentally friendly packaging. Instead of throwing away plastic waste, it can be transformed into filament that can be reused and turned into packaging through a 3D printer. As more sustainable 3D printing materials are developed, this type of packaging manufacturing will help to reduce plastic waste, which is necessary for the environment.

Final Thoughts

These are just a few of the many ways your small business can utilize 3D printing to be more productive, efficient, and competitive. For more information on what options are right for you, reach out to your local 3D printing company to discuss potential ideas. The sooner you start incorporating 3D printing into your business, the sooner you can beat the competition.

Has your business ever utilized 3D printing? If so, in what way? If not, are you considering using it? Let us know your thoughts and any additional insights in the comments below.

 About Author

Tiago Jeronimo is the Marketing Manager at Inoventive 3D Solutions, a full-service architectural scale model making company. Beginning with 2D and 3D architectural drawings, the company incorporates state-of-the-art SLA 3D printing to best construct your design. Inoventive 3D specializes in architectural models, including towers, corporate campuses, sites, and educational models. They also specialize in stadiums, full-fledged city models, and industrial models for trade shows.

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