Short-Run Printing: Is It Right for Your Company?

Is short run printing right for you?

One-size-fits-all standards are rarely good fits for everyone. At large commercial printers, however, these are often enforced because it’s the most cost-effective method of production. But is this really the right option for your company?

Having to purchase a minimum quantity for each print order just doesn’t make sense for every business. In fact, many of our customers have found short-run printing to be a more efficient and affordable solution.

What’s Meant By “Short-Run Printing?”

In the world of commercial printing, a “run” refers to a specific print job. In general terms, it’s a single project of any size/quantity to be completed by the printer.

Short-run printing, on the other hand, describes a very small print job – often ten pieces or less. These types of runs are ideal for a variety of applications and offer a number of distinct advantages for companies to consider.

Why Consider Short-Runs?

Are you curious as to how short-run printing might be useful to your business in particular? Well, at Wisconsin Screen Process (WISPI), we work with a variety of customers to supply small-quantity, yet high-quality print pieces with their business needs in mind.

The main advantages our customers acknowledge are:

  • No minimum orders. If you don’t need a large number of decals, wraps, etc., why pay for them?
  • Streamlined, in-house process from graphic design to template development to finished product. We take care of everything.
  • Fast project turnaround & reliable delivery. Order fulfillment is made easy when you get attentive, personal service from your print provider.
  • Digital printing can also be applied for high-resolution visual displays.

Let’s take heavy machinery and OEM manufacturers for example.

Example: Equipment Manufacturers

If you fabricate large pieces of equipment (i.e. transport trailers or steel tanks) you’re probably not pumping out 1,000 units very quickly.

Whether this is due to long sales cycles, quality assurance measures, or high production costs, it’s just not how your business operates.

And there’s nothing wrong with that! For this very reason, short-run screen printing could be very beneficial to your company’s print needs.

Short-runs of product branding decals, vehicle wraps, or other signage offer the flexibility and on-demand turnaround that fit seamlessly into your production process.

After all, there’s no reason to pay for and wait on 1,000 print decals if you only need 100, right?

Are There Any Disadvantages to Short-Run Printing?

Like we said before, one-size-fits-all methods simply don’t work for every business. With that in mind, it should come as no surprise that short-runs are not a blanket solution for every company or print project, either.

While there are many financial and logistical benefits to opting for a small-run print job, companies producing high volumes of product don’t experience as much value. The reason being is no secret: large quantity orders reduce their per unit cost for printing.

Because of this, our team at WISPI would recommend large runs for businesses that function as mass producers because it pays to take advantage of the long-term cost savings.

Whereas a company that fills orders upon request would likely overspend on the same-sized run because they may never end up using those materials. In this scenario, you’re paying simply to store excess print pieces rather than obtaining value from them, which is less than ideal.

What Types of Short-Runs Can WISPI Provide?

At Wisconsin Screen Process, we have a wide range of commercial printing capabilities, including short-run digital printing.

Our customers can either send us press-ready artwork directly, or we can provide graphic design support. Either way, you can expect a top-notch end product down to the finest detail.

We’ve worked with a variety of different materials and media types, including:

  • Vehicle wraps for a single van or an entire fleet
  • Business signage (even on wood paneling)
  • Vinyl brand decals for vehicles and products
  • Metal plates for instrument panels
  • Polycarbonate materials
  • Additional Plastics (E-PVC, Styrene, Coroplast, etc.)
  • Large-format fabric pieces and polyesters

Want to Learn More About WISPI’s Digital Printing Services?

Our professional and dedicated team provides exceptional customer service with rare flexibility within our industry. With an easy 10 to 14-day turnaround time, our high-performing process of short-run printing delivers the flawless design and tangible results you’re looking for.

Interested in getting a project quoted? Give us a call at 262.639.0990 or fill out an online request today!