Digital Printing: Why You Should Consider This Leading Edge Process for Your Custom Packaging

01.08.19 // Heritage Paper

Digital printing in the custom packaging design marketplace has grown exponentially in the last 15 years.

In fact, according to Smithers Pira, the global marketplace for the 10-year period 2004 to 2014 saw the digital printing segment grow by more than 400 percent.

Smithers Pira also reports that as of 2017, the digital packaging market was valued at $12.8 billion (3.25 percent of all printed packaging) and is projected to grow by an average CAGR of 13 percent to $22.4 billion in 2022.

In addition, digital printing is by far the fastest growth segment among other print processes including gravure, flexo, web and sheet offset.

Historically, the growth in digital printing as a whole can be attributed largely to the publishing and labeling industries, which were early adopters of this process.

However, the packaging segment has since surpassed their growth rate and now accounts for 60 percent of the growth in digital printing. That strong pace continues as advances in equipment quality and throughput offer increasing advantages.

Digital printing’s advantages

While there certainly have been impressive advancements made in high-quality flexo printing on corrugated material, that option is reserved for high volume runs due to the high cost of special print plates.

And although digital printing is still not as competitive for large volume orders — at least not yet —  there are many applications where the overall cost is quite attractive. Add that to a host of other advantages and you can quickly see why digital printing for packaging will continue to grow.

So, why consider digital printing for your packaging in the first place? A few of the most obvious reasons include:

  • No print plates or cutting dies required
  • Fast set up time
  • The ability to run exact quantities
  • More predictable and consistent color matching
  • Less waste

Several benefits for your business

And what do those advantages mean for your business?

  • Reduce or control inventories: running exact quantities and the capability to run multiple versions without the prohibitive cost of plate changes can lower your overall costs of business.
  • Manufacture based on consumer demand: digital printing will provide consistent and up-to-date packaging, total revision control and reduction of obsolete inventory.
  • Higher quality package decoration:  improve the quality of your brand image; for more perspective on that topic, check out this article from Packaging Digest, “How digital package printing safeguards a brand’s quality.”
  • Ability to run test market orders: test out A/B graphics or different structural styles without the burden of plates or die cutting costs.
  • Targeted promotional runs: these are especially useful for trade show giveaways as well as seasonal and sporting event promotions (for example, you can easily run displays advertising regional golf tournaments or local football teams while changing out quantities as relevant for each promotional strategy).
  • Speed-to-market: with your great ideas designed and developed, and while you’re waiting four weeks for your production packaging, you can run a small fill-in order on a digital press and meet your advance promotional orders.
  • Gift boxes: digital printing allows you to personalize your corporate gift boxes with unique messages for each market segment or each executive you’re targeting; the possibilities are endless!

As you can see, the advantages of going digital can extend to your entire business. From marketing to operations to finance, they can all realize significant impacts from digital printing that will help drive your business forward.

Contact us today to learn more about how Heritage Paper can help you leverage the value of digital printing. Together, we can put our new grand format press and our innovative design resources to work for you to help you grow your market share.

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