How Much Does It Cost To Print Booklets?
And How Can You Save Money to Maximize Your Marketing Budget?
There are a few different options for printing out our activity booklets, such as “Magic Tricks You Can Do”, and each choice needs to be made with both your budget and marketing plan in mind.
One big advantage of these easy-to-customize booklets is that they can be printed in very small quantities and personalized for a very specific situation. (right down to one booklet, handcrafted as a gift for a single person) It can make for a big impact, but it may cost you more to print.
When you’re ready to “go big” and print booklets by the hundreds, or thousands, there are some ways to save a lot of cash!
In this article we look at the different options for printing booklets, in varying quantities, to see where the best price breaks occur.
Note: All the costs below are estimates. Your price will vary depending on the your printers, services available, and area of the world.
Printing At Home
The simple way to get printing is to use your home printer, likely an InkJet or Laser printer. It allows you the convenience of printing off booklets on-demand, and can be cheap in small quantities, but you may lose out as quantities increase.
For our assessment here, we are estimating using a typical printer cost. Your exact printer model, and type of ink, may cause this calculation to change by a significant amount.
Printing a single booklet, double-sided page – Black & White
- InkJet Printer – 16 cents per booklet
- Laser Printer – 6 cents per booklet
Printing a single booklet, double-sided page – Color
- InkJet Printer – 40 cents per booklet
- Laser Printer – 24 cents per booklet
That does not include the $100 to $500 spent on the printer itself. Just the cost of producing the page. Your paper costs would be about 1 cent for standard white paper, or about 4 cents to use a brightly colored sheet.
While it ranks high for convenience, printing at home has a few downsides. It can be very slow on InkJet printers. Your printer may jam, or your ink might start to fade. All problems *you* have to deal with.
Printing at the Local Copy Shop
When I’m in need of just a few printed color pages, I pop over to the nearby Staples Copy Centre. It gives me a high quality result, but it ain’t cheap! They have a self-service printer that can pop out the prints in a few minutes.
Staples Copy Centre – Self Service
- Full Color, double sided – 78 cents per booklet
- Black and White, double sided – 20 cents per booklet
They are by no means the cheapest option, but they are the most convenient in my neighbourhood. Shopping around, I suspect you could find a place to do short run digital copies, in full color, for about 50 cents per booklet. However, you would likely have to wait a couple days to have it printed for you.
You get the benefit of high-end printing machines that produce dazzling results fast. But it comes at a price.
Don’t Forget The Folding
We’ve been talking about printing flat pages, but your activity booklets also need to be folded. If you’re just running off a few, then it’s no trouble. However, the more you print the more this becomes something you need to include in calculations.
Personally, I can fold about 25 booklets in 5 minutes, working at a brisk pace. In theory that’s 300 booklets in an hour, but in reality… no. The fact is your fingers get sore from creasing the paper! (I’ve used a leather thimble in the past to help)
So more realistically, you might want to account for folding 100 to 200 booklets in an hour. Take lots of breaks as needed. Or as I recommend, fold booklets while watching a movie.
Printing in Large Quantities to Lower Costs
If you want to make a big impact by distributing hundreds or thousands of the booklets with your marketing message, I can help you save big with top-notch industrial grade printing.
Comparing to your print-at-home costs, printing 1000 booklets would burn through $400 in ink. Not counting the one or two times you would have to “stop the presses” as the ink began to fade. It’s not very practical and frankly, not worth it.
At the 1000 quantity level you simply cannot beat the quality and price of professional printing presses. You are welcome to check out your local (or online) printers but I suspect you’ll have a hard time beating the price that I can offer. (I used to be a freelance graphic designer and still get the benefit of “industry” pricing)
1000 booklets, printed in glorious full color, on high quality gloss paper, folded and delivered to your door… for $140 USD.
That’s 14 cents per booklet, and it includes folding so it saves you a few hours and worn out fingers.
You’ll need to plan ahead for this one. First, you’ll need to have an opportunity to give out 1000 booklets but when they are “cheap like borscht” you’ll have no reservation about spreading them far and wide. Secondly, you have to plan for about a two week delivery time. (If you need it faster, shop local and pay more)
Contact me if you’re looking for some help getting your booklets printed.