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Selecting the Best Printing Method for Your Custom Shipping Boxes

  • The Bolt Boxes Team
  • Oct 25, 2021
  • 3 minute read

Choosing the right printing method for your custom shipping boxes is important. Packaging and design have a large effect on the conversion rate of consumers. In fact, over 70% of consumers agree that the product’s packaging design influences their purchase decision, and 67% are influenced by the material that is used to package the product, according to an Ipsos poll. 

Understanding which printing method is going to be the best fit for your products will ultimately help you achieve your business goals.

Let’s dive in, shall we?

Printing Method #1: Flexographic Printing

Flexo printing is one of the more traditional and common methods used to print custom shipping boxes. This simple option allows you to use up to three colors.

Flexo is a direct printing method, which means that the design you choose is applied directly onto the corrugated material. This option is very versatile which allows you to print on a wide variety of surfaces. One thing to consider is that flexographic printing is not applicable for high-resolution images. It works best when you have a simpler design for your custom shipping boxes.

You should use this method when you are looking for a cost-effective choice, a quick turnaround, or when you have a simple design that does not require photo-realistic printing. Flexo is a great choice when you are in need of bulk orders in which you are printing the same image many times.

Printing Method #2: Lithographic Printing

Litho printing uses laminated printed sheets on top of your box, giving it a high-end, magazine-quality look. This method allows the use of up to six colors, and rather than the other methods, it’s a two-step process. Litho can also comply with a wide range of materials because its rubber blanket is flexible, rather than the metal plates used in the majority of direct-to-surface methods.

This printing method works great when you are in need of small, intricate details, photo-realistic quality designs. It minimizes cost with high-volume orders, and provides a smooth, impression-free feel. The order quantity should be over 300.

Printing Method #3: Digital Printing

Digital printing is one of the easiest and most economical ways to print your custom packaging.

Similar to flexo, the digital printing method uses a direct-to-box printing style. This process is quicker and simpler than other, traditional methods making it, often, the preferred option for branded boxes. Because this is a simple and electronic process, it makes it easier to customize prints. Subtle differences are possible without having to produce new physical plates or rolls.

You should choose this method when you need samples or short runs, you have urgent order needs, you need varied prints throughout your order, or you want to recreate photo-realistic images. The ideal order size for digital printed orders should not exceed 500 boxes.

The digital printing method may be a great choice for companies that are just starting out and are looking to run test orders. The small order quantities, sample runs and urgent order needs of digital printing will make it easy for start-ups to accomplish this effectively.

Why You Should Invest in Custom Shipping Boxes

Both the look and feel of packaging take on a huge role in consumers’ buying decisions. You can help generate more sales and appeal to customers with high-quality printing and manufacturing for your boxes.

Within the retail and manufacturing industries, cardboard boxes paired with custom options are a popular choice that can show customers that you are proud of your brand. Any business that manufactures products knows the importance of quality packaging and how effective it can be. The right product packaging can make the difference between long-lasting brand loyalty and a forgettable experience.


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