CHICAGO, Sept. 11, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- GRAPH EXPO -- After 3+ years of development and months of private beta, Silicon Valley-based Keen Systems (www.keenprint.com) today announced the launch of its comprehensive and revolutionary ecommerce and customer management online service for the print industry. Keen also received the coveted Worth-A-Look award at Graph Expo.
Despite its importance as the third largest manufacturing industry in the U.S. with over 1 million people employed (source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics) and shipping in excess of $160 billion annually (source: Printing Industries of America), the print and promotional products industry has been falling behind in Internet technology for years. Remarkably, today less than 4% of industry volume is transacted online (source: InfoTrends). While over 40% of advertising dollars are still spent on print media (source: Robert Coen's Insiders Report), the industry has stood still for years watching digital media march into the double digits.
The print industry is highly fractured with over 34,000 providers in the U.S., 80% of which have 20 employees or less (source: Printing Industries of America). To date specialized ecommerce solutions for print have been clunky, expensive and ridiculously difficult to implement. Print service providers have been frustrated with and jaded by this status quo for years.
Keen is aiming to democratize ecommerce with its intuitive and turnkey end-to-end system. The first true Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) developed for the print industry, Keen removes license fees, setup and maintenance expenses, and provides instant access, quick setup and an unparalleled user experience. Keen allows print companies of all sizes and capabilities to finally use ecommerce as the primary way of doing business. This is not to compete with national players that simply engage in online marketing arbitrage such as Vista Print, but to optimize their everyday customer communication, empower their sales teams, and give their customers the transparency and self-service they've been demanding in today's always on, 24/7 world.
Keen's unique and patent-pending architecture is designed to allow virtually infinite expansion of functionality via partner plugins and integrations. Today, Keen is also announcing its network of plugin partners. Going live later in the year, this program allows print service providers to put new products and services directly in front of their end-customers while retaining full control of the order flow and relationships. Commitments already include industry front-runners such as leading trade-only supplier, ASAP Printing; and the world's largest design template library, Tweak.
"With Keen, print service providers can expand their offering with high-quality graphic design via Tweak's creative library of self-service customizable templates," said Jerry Kennelly, CEO of Tweak. "We are excited to expand our reach and seamlessly integrate with Keen's platform, partnering with printers across the United States."
Integrations also include direct connections with leading email newsletter service, MailChimp, and the industry standard, Intuit Quickbooks (available at launch).
Born out of the frustration in the print industry with the lack of a quality ecommerce solution, Keen is a Silicon Valley startup founded in 2008 by award-winning designer and leading user experience and online marketing expert Vitaly M. Golomb. He established Keen to democratize ecommerce for print, level the playing field for print companies of all sizes (and segments), and give print a fighting chance in today's online world. Keen is the most advanced and comprehensive ecommerce engine the print world has ever seen and the first true Software-as-a-Service solution. Additionally, Keen's unique (and patent-pending) architecture is designed to allow each storefront virtually infinite expansion of functionality via partner plugins and integrations. The company went live and announced its network of launch partners at Graph Expo 2011.
Visit Keen's website to sign up for a 30-day risk-free trial today: www.keenprint.com. Keen publishes a blog at www.rethinkprint.biz and enjoys one of the biggest industry followings on Twitter: @keenprint.
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SOURCE Keen Systems