Should you outsource your label printing or bring it in-house?

February 27, 2019 |

For businesses that regularly print labels on any scale, the cost can quickly add up if steps aren’t taken to establish the best possible printing process. Among those steps is the decision to either outsource your label printing to a professional partner or to bring the operation entirely in-house. You might find yourself caught between being too large or too small to have an obvious choice, as there are a number of factors that contribute to this decision – primarily cost, efficiency, and complexity. Here’s a breakdown of the differences between outsourcing and bringing your printing in-house to help determine which is right for your business.

The signs it’s time to bring it in-house

The decision to bring your label printing in-house ultimately comes down to the frequency and complexity of your typical print jobs. If you primarily handle simple, small-scale jobs with minimal opportunity for error that won’t eat up a large chunk of operational time, then printing in-house is a viable option. Short-run printers excel in these types of roles and are now more accessible to small businesses, in addition to being more initially affordable with a lower cost of operation versus a large, flexographic printer. Small jobs are often not worth the time to go through the advanced processes of an outsourcing partner and enjoy the benefits of a quick turnaround and no need to wait for delivery.

Some downsides of in-house printing:

To print in-house, however, you do need to acquire the right equipment in terms of printers, labels, ribbon, and more, all of which takes up physical space in your place of business. You’ll also need to stay stocked with blank labels and ink to keep your printing operation going. In-house printing is great for quick-run jobs with minimal complexity, but once those aspects start to ramp up, you’re best to outsource to a more capable partner.

In-house printing highlights:

  • Best for simple, small-scale jobs with minimal opportunity for error
  • More initially affordable with lower cost of operation
  • Quick turnaround
  • Need to store and maintain your own equipment

When outsourcing is the best option

For more complex jobs that need to be printed on a larger scale with top-end efficiency and design, a professional outfit will provide the best result. When you outsource, there’s no need to house your own equipment, which is a major benefit as the cost of technology and design for a large, custom print job can be quite substantial for a business to take on in-house. Working with a professional partner ensures more quality control and less room for error, as well. In-house jobs often find employees having to redo jobs because something went wrong due to a lack of expertise. Your label printing partner will work with you and lead the whole process to ensure a successful result, allowing you to devote your time and attention to more important tasks. When you need a large job handled efficiently with no room for error, it’s time to outsource.

Outsourced printing highlights:

  • Best for complex jobs on a larger scale that require high-end efficiency
  • No need to house own equipment
  • More quality control and less opportunity for error
  • Allows you to devote time to more important tasks

Tackle print jobs of any size with Lofton Label

Lofton Label & Packaging has both the facility and expertise to lead large-scale jobs and the equipment needed to help take operations into your own hands. Our team will work with you to determine the best printing solutions for your needs. Contact us today to start boosting your brand with the industry’s best design and printing capabilities.