Different Box Printing Methods: Why We Care So You Don’t Need To

The story of a box you send through the mail is usually not as interesting as the story of what’s inside the box.

Ordinarily, you wouldn’t care how your name or logo got onto the side of the box, you’d only care that it was the right name or logo and that the product inside was being sold at the right price (unless you are a printing expert, in which case we are excited to speak “shop” with you). You wouldn’t normally think about printing methods for the box you’re shipping, you’d think instead about the message being conveyed by all that ink.

For example, you probably wouldn’t care that the small boxes for your strawberries were printed by flexible relief plate printing, also known as flexography. Your strawberries have nothing to do with the plastic film created for your company logo and used to directly impress four or more color sets into a brilliant red design of berries forming your company name onto custom-shaped shipping boxes, or the blue lettering stating a clear message to grocery shoppers that your strawberries are of the highest quality.

To your customers, the strawberries go well with the visual cues that result from the flexographic prints, but no one on either end should be worrying about the high-quality, low-cost print job on the box

Or, for instance, say you invented a new bike lock and found yourself suddenly swimming in orders for them from bike store owners. You wouldn’t worry about whether they got shipped to store owners in boxes printed with digital ink printers. You’re not likely to think about how they got all those words and pictures on the box for you. What matters is that the boxes fit the product, the logo on the side is high-quality, it indicates your name clearly and it positively reflects your reputation. You’d want those boxes to get to you with a fast turnaround time so you could then ship them quickly and get paid for your invention. Digital can be faster than traditional flexo, but “faster” might be the only word that matters to you.

Or, say, if your decades-old business recently updated the company logo, you wouldn’t think about the offset lithography printing method being used. What you’d want to make sure of first and foremost is that there is no interruption of your company’s business. Lithography can be a complicated process, using custom offset plates, relying on a fundamental theory in physics that oil and water repel each other. You wouldn’t want to worry about whether or not the company printing your boxes can handle a shift in design with swift efficiency, solid consistency, high quantity and high quality, and at low cost. Or that the printing is done on paper then laminated to your boxes for the best possible finish.


You want many of these boxes over a long period of time – until your next logo update, decades from now, perhaps – and you want consistent, accurate color reproduction. Do the boxes get printed using lithography, or is it magic? Doesn’t matter. You just want to ensure you can continue shipping lots and lots of products to paying customers.

You shouldn’t stay up at night pondering the possibilities of a professional, papery, familiar kraft box that brings an instant impression of reliability or an exciting, laminated white box that can send anticipatory chills down the spine of your customers. You should be able weigh these kinds of cost-benefit questions during working hours, and sleep easy knowing your decision, whatever it is, is absolutely doable. You should conduct your business with confidence, knowing you can present yourself the right way from beginning to end, knowing your customers will be happy.

You’ve got a business to run. You need boxes to get your products into the hands of your customers. Your main concern is the product, not the box.

Because printing boxes is not your story. Printing boxes is our story.

Packaging matters. We can make it happen for you. Contact us at Custom Boxes Now! to help with your custom-printed shipping box needs.

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