When it comes to advertising and sales, it’s important to choose the right printing method for your packaging, as it can play an essential role in your marketing strategy. There are several options available, but in this article we are going to focus on the advantages of flexography, one of the techniques we use at SPG .
To start, we need to explain why this printing method is so useful and what it can do.
First and foremost, a product’s packaging must reflect and uphold the company’s philosophy . It must be in line with the corporate identity to ensure consumers associate the brand with the product they are going to buy. The printing method has to be able to achieve this when applying the design to the packaging material.
It is also important to bear in mind that the product will be one of several similar options on sale. As well as competitive pricing and good advertising, the product needs to be eye-catching which is why the printing method is so important.
The look of the packaging is a key factor in purchasing decisions made by customers. Products with a striking packaging design and attractive message are more likely to be picked.
While there are many printing methods to choose from, flexography is currently one of the most popular, even though it has been around for more than a hundred years.
Despite its longevity, this technique still has considerable advantages over other alternatives when it comes to printing packaging.
WHAT IS FLEXOGRAPHY?
Flexography is a direct method of printing. The ink is transferred to the substrate, or packaging material, via a system of rotating rollers.
It uses flexible rubber plates (flexo plates), which give the method its name.
The ink is applied to the plates and then stamped onto the material, leaving the printed design on the surface.
In flexography, the flexible plates are created in high relief. The ink is applied evenly to the areas in relief, and these are the parts that are printed. The spaces between these areas remain dry and blank.
In order to print in colour with flexography, different plates are used for each colour. Using pre-set designs, the packaging can be printed quickly and efficiently.
Flexographic inks are also generally translucent rather than opaque, which means the colours can be printed on top of each other without blocking the others out, as is the case with other methods.
Versatility is one of the main advantages of flexography. This method can be used on many different materials and is actually highly recommended for packaging, especially corrugated cardboard and plastics (both polyethylene and polypropylene).
OTHER PACKAGING PRINTING SYSTEMS
At SPG, we believe in the customisation and personalisation of packaging. Our goal is to adapt to the needs of each client to find the perfect solution.
This means that, while flexography comes highly recommended, we will occasionally need to use a different printing system.
The following are alternatives to the flexographic printing method:
- Rotogravure: another printing technique that is highly versatile and quick to apply. It uses high-density inks that provide a quality gloss finish, even with highly detailed images. Moreover, it can be used with many materials, even those that require heat treatments, such as pasteurisation and retort processing.
- Digital: this is the most modern printing method that does away with plates and other elements of the printing process. The design is sent straight to the printer from the computer, and the inks are converted to the CMYK colour system. It offers great print quality, but is recommended for shorter runs.
ADVANTAGES OF FLEXOGRAPHY
While we have several printing methods available, flexography is often the preferred choice as it offers considerable advantages over the others:
The print speed per minute is hard to beat, which gives it a clear competitive advantage. It is ideal for long runs that need to be printed and dried in a short time.
The method can be used with many different materials (both porous and non-porous) and on uneven surfaces, such as bags or food packaging. This versatility makes flexography the method of choice when the others can’t provide the print quality we need.
The price-quality ratio is better than other methods, meaning everyone can afford this efficient printing technique.
The inks used in the printing process are water based and recycled. The plates are also easily cleaned with water, unlike other methods which require solvents or other chemical cleaning products. All in all, the process of flexographic printing is a more environmentally friendly solution .
Would you like to use flexography to print your packaging? Contact us for a personalised analysis. We will find the best method to ensure a high quality print that will help your product stand out on the shelf.