There are two key factors to consider when choosing a printing technique. The first is the material, or printing surface, you are going to use, and the second is the length of the run. This is because the best technique for the job will depend on the metreage to be produced and the rotation.

However, the properties of some printing techniques mean they provide much more than just printing. They allow packaging to align with other marketing strategies. These techniques are digital and offset printing.

When to choose digital or offset printing

The digital technique is best if you need to print short runs of between 1,000 m2 and 3,000 m2. In these cases, digital printing is more cost-effective than other printing options.

If you are looking for a printing technique for short to medium runs for products that have a high rotation of designs, offset is the printing system for you.

As we mentioned, these techniques have added benefits in comparison to others. The following are some of the characteristics that make them unique:

– No plates in digital printing

The fact no plates are used in digital printing means shorter runs are possible. This is perfect for market testing, as it avoids surplus stock and reduces associated costs.

– Better customisation with digital printing

Another of the benefits of digital printing is its capacity for customisation. The possibility of printing designs one by one opens up a myriad of possibilities for marketing departments.

– Offset printing: perfect for new projects

Offset printing is perfect for new projects when market testing is not performed, as runs start at 3,500 m2. With other techniques, such as flexography and rotogravure, the cost associated with the use of relief plates or cylinders is absorbed with repeat runs, as the unit cost drops with volume. With offset, however, SP Group charges no additional fee for the aluminium plates.

– Products with a high design rotation: Offset printing

When products have a high rotation of designs, offset is also the best option. Compared to producing traditional flexographic plates or processing rotogravure cylinders, modifying a design for offset is quick and easy.

– Different designs in the same run: Offset printing

The offset technique allows different designs to be printed in the same run.  The number of different designs that can be printed will depend on the size of the run.  The technique is perfect for products with little rotation that do not reach the minimum run length, as incorporating different designs into the same run increases the m2 without having to increase the number of end units.

If you would like to know more about the difference between both techniques, or which is best for your product, please do not hesitate to contact us. We will be happy to answer your questions.


At SP Group we optimise our production processes to provide the most efficient service to large industry. Many multinational companies already trust our ability to meet their flexible packaging needs on a daily basis.
If you would like to know how your company can benefit from our services, send us your details and one of our sales advisors will contact you. Or, if you prefer, consult the contact details of your area representative.