How Much Does Printing Cost?


As a network of local publishers, we often get asked how much other publishers pay for printing.

Unfortunately, there is just no simple answer to that question because:

  • quantity,
  • trim size,
  • page count,
  • paper quality,
  • binding style,
  • coatings
  • and shipping all impact the final price.

We could tell you, for example, that printing 10,000 copies of a magazine that has 100 perfect bound pages and is 8 7/8” x 11” on 70lb (8pt for covers) glossy high-grade paper might cost you between $12-14k not including shipping costs, but that isn’t very helpful.

So let’s talk about the different choices you can make when it comes to printing.

Trim Size

Trim size refers to the final size of your magazine after it’s trimmed. In the example above, that is the 8 7/8” x 11 or 8 7/8 wide by 11” tall (height). Remember that the height side, is the side where the binding or spine will be bound.

Page Count

This one is simply the number of pages, not sheets of paper, in each issue including the covers. Cover is page 1, inside cover is page 2, etc. all the way through the back cover.

Paper Quality

Paper quality refers to the weight, grade and stock of the paper on which your publication will be printed. There are many different options:

  • Paperweight, or thickness, ranges from 38lbs to 100lbs for text pages and 60lbs to 140lbs for covers.
  • Paper grade is on a scale of 1 to 5 with one being the best and describes the "whiteness" of the paper. Magazine grade paper is usually grade 3.
  • Paper stock comes in 3 varieties: gloss, dull and matte. The majority of magazines are printed on gloss paper.

Quantity

The number of copies you want printed.

Binding Style

There are many different types of bindings but the two most common are perfect-bound and saddle-bound. Perfect-bound is a square edge look that is common on many magazines where saddle-bound is stapled. Other types of bindings include spiral-bound and case-bound, the latter which is typically used for hardbound books.

Coatings

There are 3 common types of coating that can be used to finish your publication. They are gloss UV, matte UV and varnish. A gloss UV is an extra shiny coating that ads a nice sheen to enhance colors and preserve paper from fading. Matte UV provides more texture while Varnish is a less glossy and less shiny version of gloss UV.

For more details and other helpful hints check out How much does it cost to print 1,000/5,000/10,000/20,000 Magazines, Catalogs or Calendars? from Shweiki Media, our premier print partner or watch the video below.


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