There are many “high use” categories in office supplies like copy paper, ink and toner cartridges and file folders. Another of popular office product category is binders. Today, approximately 75% of all binders sold are actually called view binders. These products are known for the clear plastic overlay that covers the binder so that custom pages can be inserted for presentations and products.
There are tons of product choices in office products today, and view binders are no exception. This article will give you the basics in understanding the various brands and styles of binders out there so you can make an informed buying decision.
The first thing to remember when shopping binder brands is that Avery is the number one brand. While Avery is known to many people as a company that sells address labels and shipping labels, Avery also does a huge volume in ring binders, and they are in fact the largest binder manufacturer in the world.
Avery’s Durable line of ring binders is synonymous with quality and value to many binder users. That quality, value and huge selection is what has driven Avery’s market leadership. While view binders are the main volume driver and the primary focus of this article, Avery also has a full line of reference binders, display binders, plastic poly binders and even special function binders. Greater product selection, for Avery, means higher sales.
If Avery is the clear brand leader, finding #2 is a bit harder. In terms of volume the next binder companies out their are ACCO (Wilson Jones), Cardinal (Tops) and Samsill. While Samsill is the smaller of the three in terms of volume, I think they have a quality advantage, and I like the fact they are still a family owned independent company, and not a corporate conglomerate like the ACCO’s and Tops of the world.
Cardinal’s new line called Recycled ClearVue EasyOpen D-Ring binders is the perfect example of new innovation. These binders have a unique easy opening ring mechanism that eliminates two step and two hand operation when opening and closing your binder, plus they are made from 47% recycled material. The line comes in all the popular sizes from 1 inch binders all the way up to 5 inch binders. They also have a new recycled line called EcoSmart binders that I highly recommend because of their “greeness” (90% recycled) and their cool new ring functionality.
Store brands and private label brands are prevalent when it comes to the lower priced binders, and I’ll be perfectly clear here. Be very careful about buying store brand binders from the large “Office Mega Depot” retailers out there. While the prices may look attractive, the poor quality and lack of durability usually makes the adage of “you get what you pay for” come true. Most of the major corporate retailers source their private label products from China to inflate their profits, and I suggest you either stick with a name brand, or consider a great value brand called Universal.
However, there is one value brand that is known for offering great value while also providing national brand quality like Wilson Jones and Avery. The brand is called Universal, and you can find them at any quality independent office products dealers. In fact, I recommend you buy all your office supplies online from independent office products companies, and avoid the large corporate stores out there who have bad service and limited selection.
So to wrap up this handy guide to binder brands and styles, view binders are the most popular and functional style of binder. Avery is the top national brand and you can’t go wrong with their products. Consider Universal binders if price is most important, and keep in mind Cardinal EcoSmart binders for a great recycled alternative. And last, remember to avoid the big box superstores, and buy your office supplies online from an independent office products company. There are office suppliers out there that do good work in their community and offer great value.
Tristan Hill writes shopping tips for products like View Binders for your office. He’s an expert on all Office Supplies and he recommends Zuma Office Supply for their Conscious Capitalism, great prices and they Do Good Work