What is the best printer for small business?

What is the best printer for small business? Recently I worked with a new small business client who bought the printer recommended by the pimply youth at the local London Drugs. It was not a good fit for her office

HP Envy or Enmity

My client has an ethernet connected desktop in her office which is right by her modem/router. The HP Envy that was recommended to her only connects via wifi. Yes, you use an USB cable to start the set up but the installation program assumes your computer is wireless and demands the settings from a wireless card. Even if you use say someone else’s laptop to get the printer on the wifi, your desktop computer still can’t connect to install the software let alone print or scan.

I will always tell my clients if they want to see a lot of me, get a wireless HP printer or all in one. Hewlett Packard was great like 25 years ago but their printers, their toners and their service suck now. HP executives have made it plain their plan is to lock customers in with the invasive HP Smart App and toners. HP has even inserted chip into the cartridge pads to detect generic ink cartridges so they can disable your printer until you buy their cartridges.

Besides avoiding HP, what is the best printer for small business?

Oh Brother!

I recommend Brother printers. Easiest setup and least amount of support calls from clients about them. Brother prices their cartridges and toners competitively.

Stay Wired

Even with Brother I recommend a wired a device. Wired as in USB connected for one user or ethernet cable wired for sharing in a small office.

Why wired? Fewer connectivity problems and speed. If your router gets restarted or powered off, wireless devices don’t always reconnect quickly or at all. This is a big problem with HP devices. Also wired is still faster. Ethernet speed is 1Gbps, best wireless speed is around 700Mps under ideal conditions if you’re lucky.

Other printer considerations

If you’re looking for a new printer for your small business what other factors should you consider?

  1. how many pages per month
  2. do you need an all in one (printer/scanner/copier)?
  3. do you need a compact printer for your small office?

Printer Envy

For my client with the small office, one user for occasional prints, hard wired desktop what do I recommend? I would go with the compact Brother MFC-J497DW multifunction (aka All In One). While it has wireless capability, you can also connect it via USB cable when all else fails.

If she printed more, I would recommend one of the eco-tank models.

How long should a printer last?

Good models will last over 5 years. My Epson Small In One still works perfectly after 7 years. Brother printers last as long.