Posted on January 16, 2020 by Dennis Salazar

Is Litho Printed on Label Stock the Best Option for Your e-commerce Box?

We realize all the rage these days is digital printing directly to corrugated. As a visit to our newest web site will show, we are quite well versed in that relatively new and trending box printing process. We would agree digital printing offers some unique benefits as well as some disadvantages, especially when compared to a much older process like “litho- labels.”

The litho label process

Litho labeling on corrugated is a process where we OFFSET print your graphics on high grade, coated printing paper which is then laminated to the board that will later be used to cut and form your box.

It has always been widely used for high end gift boxes, retail applications where eye appeal is often more important than shipping strength. Examples are retail boxes for kitchen appliances, baby items, or any application where photo quality product or people images are part of the graphic design.

photo quality images with litho labels by Salazar PackagingLitho label printed for unique and upscale esthetics

Litho’s unique capabilities allows you to incorporate techniques that may not be available with any other standard box printing process, including digital. This includes spot varnishes, soft touch finishes, and high gloss surfaces on black and other difficult colors. Laminates can be added to prevent scuffing and ink rub-off. Embossing and debossing are also possible when utilizing a litho label process.

Litho is a better value than ever before 

Perhaps you wanted an upscale look some time ago and explored litho labels as an option to create your box. What you probably found were really high prices as well as much higher minimums. Improvements and changes in the litho printing process materials and equipment, as well as increased competition from digital printing, has resulted in a very competitive market. We have found that digital has a distinct price advantage on orders under 5,000 boxes, but that depends on several variables including graphics and finishes required as well as box dimensions. At 5,000 the pricing is even, but litho label gains the cost advantage as the order quantity increases.

sleeve with soft touch litho label by Salazar PackagingThe digital versus litho label bottom line

We suggest that you do not assume that trendy, popular digital printing is always the best solution. It may be and it may not be. Please allow one of our application experts to help you determine that and if you prefer, allow us to price both options for you.

Call us at 630-551-1700 or contact us at These are only two of the many printing options and products we offer so our goal is always to provide you with the best solution at the best possible price for your specific application.

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