Short-Run vs. Long-Run Package Printing

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Short-Run vs. Long-Run Package Printing

Traditional packaging manufacturers have always favored long production runs, typically hundreds of thousands of units made from a single setup. The initial cost incurred to set up a design and the equipment for printing made it more cost-effective to produce more units all at once. As the number of units went up, the cost per unit went down because the setup cost could be absorbed across a larger number of units.
The modern digital production methods have changed this landscape. There is virtually no setup for digital printing. This results in making shorter runs more cost-effective and providing additional benefits, both financially and in the development and testing of new products.

Benefits of Short-Run Production

In addition to the cost savings from the initial setup, short-run production can save you money by not forcing you to purchase larger quantities than what you need. This means you don’t have to pay for extra warehousing and storage for excess packaging inventory. The money you save can then be put back into your business, whether it’s towards your product’s design, marketing, overhead, or development of new products.

Market Advantage vs. Your Competitors

There are other benefits to short runs aside from just financial reasons. By keeping your packaging runs more manageable, you can try out new products with test audiences, or you can do market research with new branding and packaging formats. It can be more cost-effective to release seasonal variations or limited editions tied to events or partnerships with other companies. And as your business grows into new markets or regions, you can continue to expand your packaging runs at a pace which suits you rather than being forced into making a larger investment than what you need. Keeping your costs low can strengthen your ability to respond to fluctuations in the market.

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