Evergreen Printing Business Ideas + Checklist to Improve Your ROI

Evergreen Printing Business Ideas + Checklist to Improve Your ROI


Shutterfly started as a company to help people print photos from their digital cameras.

Vistaprint, one of the leading providers of printing services, began its journey to provide printed products at an affordable price to small businesses.

DiscountedMugs is on a mission to create lasting impressions with personalized gifts within budget.

What’s common among these?

Well, they began with an idea. If you want to step into the entrepreneurial arena within the printing industry, you want to be very clear about your printing business ideas.

Stats say the global printing industry will reach $821 billion by 2022. This means that now is undoubtedly the right time to start your own business.

However, printing, like any other business, is undergoing major shifts. For instance, the demand for newspapers and magazines is diminishing while packaging printing is growing.

Hence, you need to invest in something that has bigger opportunities in years to come. To simplify your task, we have prepared this guide of four printing business ideas and how you can improve your print shop business ROI as quickly as possible.

Here are top printing business ideas for starting your own printing business

1. Start a Commercial Printing Business

The commercial printing market is experiencing substantial growth. Studies project it will be worth USD 472.35 billion by 2026, registering a CAGR of 2.24% from 2021 to 2026.

Increasing applications across various end-use segments and technology drive demand for commercial printing services. Hence, commercial printing products seem to be a good printing business opportunity.

The first step in starting a commercial printing business is to decide on products. These include booklets, brochures, flyers, business cards, greeting cards, and notebooks. The easiest way to find trending products is to check Google Trends.

Google Trends is an excellent tool for analyzing the popularity of top search queries across various regions. It also uses graphs to compare the search volume of different queries.

For instance, the image below shows five products: notebooks, business cards, greeting cards, flyers, and brochures. It also shows a graph of the search queries in the United States over the past 90 days. As you can see, the demand for flyers and notebooks is the highest, while greeting cards are the least popular. You can check the popularity and choose a product category accordingly.

Flyers and notebooks have the highest demand

(Flyers and notebooks have the highest demand while greeting card is the lowest)

Personalization is the secret weapon of success regardless of your printing service. Whether it’s Nutella’s ‘Nutella Unica‘ campaign or Coca-Cola’s Share a Coke campaign, brands connect with customers with one-to-one personalization.

Moreover, your customers no longer consider personalization a luxury. They expect companies to deliver better experiences with personalization. Here are some examples depicting online printing business opportunities in this service.


PsPrint is a leading online print production and design company. Their customizable print products help their customers stand out from the crowd. Users can create designs on different products like booklets, business cards, flyers, etc. As you can see in the image below, you can design a card by adding text, a company logo, images, and more once you choose a design template.


(PsPrint – Allowing Users to Customize Business Cards, Flyers, and More)

Custom Ink

Custom Ink is a famous retail company that sells apparel, promotional items, and more with the highest-quality printing. Users can create and print various products the way they like using their design lab. For instance, this spiral notebook is a classic promotional item. Users can add their company logo or text and use it as a giveaway.

Custom Ink

(Custom Ink’s Design Lab for Commercial Print Products)

PrintXpand’s packaging design tool allows users to design and customize their product packaging with a user-friendly drag-and-drop interface. It provides a range of templates and design elements, allowing for easy adaptation to any brand’s visual identity. Get started now!


2. Build a Print eCommerce Store

From face masks to jackets, mugs to pillow covers, you can provide your service as a print eCommerce solution. If you do not want to set up a printing infrastructure and manage inventory yourself, you can choose to have a print-on-demand business model.

Print on demand is where you work with a supplier to customize and sell products per order. Following are some options that you can consider for your printing business.

Starting a clothing line is one of the quickest ways to enter the print eCommerce market. While you can do a lot here, choosing a trending product with great future opportunities is a good idea.

Selling custom-designed T-shirts is a good printing business opportunity. Studies expect the market to expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 9.7% from 2021 to 2028. You can start your own T-shirt business with the right business plan and tools. Later, you can expand your business by adding more product categories like hoodies, activewear, hats, and more.

Another trending category is custom-printed mugs. Businesses use mugs as promotional products. Hence, starting a custom mug business can open many online printing business opportunities.

Like custom mug printing, selling customized glassware is one of the famous printing ideas for business. With increased beverage consumption and glassware usage as promotional products, the market will likely reach $12.4 billion by 2025.

When it comes to printing business ideas for eCommerce products, the list is endless. Clothing, home decor, phone covers, coffee mugs, uniforms, photo albums, and much more. Deciding what products to sell can be difficult.

You need to ensure that there is a market for what you are selling. Moreover, the products you decide to sell directly influence major business decisions, including finances, inventory, marketing, etc.


3. Start a Printing Business Using 3D Technology

One of the latest technologies that have become popular in the last few years is 3D printing. Did you know the market is likely to expand at a growth rate of 21.0% from 2021 to 2028?

From eCommerce to the medical industry, there is no shortage of possibilities to start a printing business using 3D technology. The key to success is identifying your niche. Here are some printing business ideas using 3D technology that you can consider.

1. 3D Packaging

As 3D technology improves daily, many businesses consider it an option for packaging. Since 3D printing helps create on-demand packaging, it reduces waste. Moreover, the technique allows customers to make their personalized packaging.

A good example of 3D technology in packaging is Smart Cups. It’s a line of energy drinks in 3D-polycapsule printed cups. When you add water, the self-stirring cup turns it into an energy drink.

Smart Cups

Sipa is another company that turned to 3D to develop an innovative package design. The company creates impressive elephant-printed 3D bottles.

Sipas 3D Bottles

(Sipa’s 3D Bottles)

2. 3D Printed Shoes

3D printing is influencing many industries, and the shoe industry is no different. Many brands like Adidas and New Balance are becoming more and more successful with the help of 3D printing.

3D printing research analysts at SmarTech predict that the 3D-printed shoe industry will become a $6.3bn industry within a decade. These bold predictions seem to suggest a good printing business opportunity.

Let’s look at a few examples showing online printing business opportunities in the footwear sector.

Reebok – In 2016, the shoe company developed a new shoemaking concept: the liquid factory. The concept replaced traditional moulds with 3D printing techniques. Later that year, the brand released a limited batch of 300 shoes with 3D-printed outsoles.

Rebooks 3D Printed Outsole

(Rebook’s 3D Printed Outsole)

Ecco – This Danish shoe manufacturer developed a new shoe called Quant-U. It is the first-of-its-kind service that uses biomechanical data acquired via 3D scanners to produce customized silicone midsoles.

Silicone Midsoles By Ecco

(Customized Silicone Midsoles By Ecco)

Apart from these, you can also consider 3D smartphone cases, photo frames, drinkware, etc.

4. Offer Packaging Printing Services

One of many printing business ideas to consider is packaging and labels. At a global level, the packaging industry is a major economic generator. According to reports by Smithers Peria, the worldwide authority on packaging and print industry, the demand for the world packaging industry will reach $1.05 trillion by 2024.

The growth is due to the increasing demand for printing solutions in end-use industries like food and beverage and pharmaceutical.

According to a market report, the demand for packaging printing is likely to remain robust as hospitals, drug companies, and PPE kit packaging companies respond to the crisis.

If you want printing business ideas, this industry offers great opportunities.

Since the packaging printing business is versatile, you would want to focus on a specific market, such as cosmetics, food products, medical goods, etc. Doing market and competitor research will help determine who you wish to serve.

You can choose from a variety of products like promotional boxes, signature boxes, handbags, bottle neckers, stickers and labels, etc.

It is entirely up to you if you wish to start a full-fledged packaging business or choose one or two product categories and then go big.

Next, keep an eye on the latest trends in the industry. Currently, digital printing is gaining popularity in this sector. It offers labels and packaging companies attractive benefits like faster turnaround, cost-effective print prototypes, the ability to print multiple versions, and more. Hence, more and more businesses are switching to digital printing. Check out a few examples of brands offering packaging printing.


Whether it’s a small carton or a huge printed shipping box, Packlane has everything you need for your packaging needs. What sets them apart is the custom design lab. Users can choose a style, change graphics, add text or logo, and more. Once they create their design, they can get a sneak peek in 3D and instantly get a quote.


(Packaging Printing By Packlane)


eCreamery, one of our US-based clients known for its mouth-watering ice cream and personalized packaging. Users can choose their favorite flavors and then personalize pints with their favorite titles using their product design tool.


(eCreamery Offering Personalizable Pints on Their Packaging)

Do you want to enhance customer experience through customized ice cream pints like eCreamery?

eCreamery identified the need to cater to individual preferences and provide a seamless customization experience for customers. They required the integration of their online stores to showcase the flavors customers chose on the ice cream pints.

Read more

Check out advanced features of our packaging design tool to discover how it can help your custom

packaging business.



5. A Checklist to Improve Your Printing Shop Business’s ROI

Here are some ways you can reach your target customers and improve sales:

1. Quickly start selling With an Online Store

You can build an online store for your printing business in two ways: developing an eCommerce store from scratch or purchasing a ready-to-use web-to-print store.

When it comes to building an online store from starch, there are many platforms to choose from. As per Investopedia, the top five eCommerce platforms are BigCommerce, Wix, Magento, Squarespace, and Shopify.

Before you choose a platform, evaluate the solutions and confirm if they meet all your needs. You can connect with their support staff and solve all your queries. You can even test the features yourself by starting a free trial.

The biggest problem with building an eCommerce store from scratch is its high cost. Custom development costs depend on your business requirements and the functionality you choose. The more complex your project is, the more investment it requires.

Another option to save you cash and time is a ready-made web-to-print storefront. It comes with all the features that you need to launch an online store quickly.

PrintXpand aims to provide ready-to-sell B2B and B2C Web-to-Print Storefronts for established businesses and startups. Our web-to-print solution allows you to customize your online store according to your business logic. It comes with easy-to-integrate customizable themes that let you build a store according to your needs.

PrintXpand Web-to-print Store

(A Snap of Homepage From PrintXpand Web-to-print Store)

We know how important it is for businesses to streamline all their operations. Our web-to-print solutions have all the tools like inventory manager, print job manager, etc. that you need to streamline print workflow.

What sets us apart is that you can also include a product design tool with our web-to-print solution. Printing is a competitive market, and one way you can differentiate your business from competitors is through your unique selling proposition.

Offering customization with a product design tool will differentiate your products from others and hence, enable you to attract more customers to your store.

2. Have a Solid Marketing Plan

Undoubtedly, you can reach more prospective customers with an online store. However, you will have to get them to your store. There are tons of ideas to market your printing business. This section will discuss some of the easiest ways to attract customers to your website.

A. Engage with Customers on Social Media

Social media platforms are among the best ways to increase engagement and build a community of followers. The first step in developing a social media strategy is determining the platform you want to market on.

“It’s important to be where your audience of potential customers is today and where they might be tomorrow. It’s better to be ahead of the curve than behind.” — Andrew Delaney, Social Media Marketing Manager at HubSpot

When choosing a platform for your printing business, consider your target customers and where they hang out.

For instance, if you have a B2B printing business, you would want to spend more time on Facebook since a higher percentage of users are on Facebook for professional purposes. Business decision-makers spend 74% more time on Facebook than others.

On the other hand, if you want to target the younger crowd, you can consider creating a business profile on Instagram. In the US, 75% of people aged 18-24 use Instagram, making up the largest group by age, followed by 57% of 25-30 year-olds.

Once you decide on the platform you want to focus on, it’s time to create engaging posts. Check what your competitors share and determine how uniquely you can promote your products or services.

B. Work on SEO Strategy

You may ask if SEO is right when you are just starting. There is no right or wrong marketing approach at any given time. Sooner or later, you must start investing in SEO strategy as nothing can beat a strong, organic search engine visibility.

Before you improve your rankings, here’s a little heads up: – (a) SEO may take more time to show results, especially if you are into a competitive market, (b) you will face high competition from paid ads as they occupy more space on SERP.

Having said that, the core of a Google-friendly website is high-quality content your audience seeks. Great content, website speed, and keywords will determine the success of SEO.

When it comes to optimizing your pages, you also need to take care of on-page optimization, mobile friendliness, better user experience, schema, high-quality backlinks, etc.

Also, consider creating a Google My Business Account. It is a free and easy-to-use tool to manage your online presence across Google.

Are You Ready?

Aspiring printing entrepreneurs start with knowing different printing business ideas. But it’s not just about what you sell. What truly makes you successful is the value you provide to your customers by solving a problem they face.

With our designer tool and web-to-print services, we have helped many entrepreneurs like you build and grow a successful printing shop business. In our 14+ years of experience, we have developed quality-driven solutions that help business owners effectively manage their web-to-print business. Additionally, we assist businesses in marketing strategies to reach more customers and increase sales.

All product and company names are trademarks™, registered® or copyright© trademarks of their respective holders. Use of them does not imply any affiliation with or endorsement by them.

Yesha Bhatt

Yesha Bhatt

Yesha Bhatt is a literature major who strongly believes in the mighty power of words. She recently made the jump from being a student to a professional by joining Biztech as a Content Writer. Her aim is to make tech easier for our readers to understand while she herself takes a journey into this mystic would of bits. Apart from writing and binge-reading, she is passionate about women's issues and history and mostly hangs around on Twitter making sensible points about women's issues and Indian politics.

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