How Much Does Poster Printing Cost (2024)

Poster printing is a powerful visual medium for conveying messages, promoting events, and enhancing brand recognition. Whether you’re a business owner, event organizer, student, or artist, understanding the cost factors associated with poster printing is essential to ensure your project stays within budget while achieving the desired outcome.

The poster printing cost depends on several factors, such as:

  • Paper choices (type, quality, thickness, etc.)

  • Poster size

  • Color vs. black and white printing

  • Quantity ordered

  • Printing technology used

  • Customization and design complexity

  • Additional costs (shipping, delivery, services, etc.)

Let’s take a closer look at each of these factors and how they impact the final cost of your poster project.

How Much Does Poster Printing Cost (1)

Detailed Breakdown of Poster Printing Cost

1. Cost Associated with Different Paper Selections (Type & Thickness)

One of the main factors determining the cost of poster printing is the type and thickness of paper you choose. Different paper types and finishes, such as glossy, satin, canvas, textured dry erase, or matte finish, are available for poster prints. Each type has its own advantages and disadvantages, depending on the purpose and style of your custom poster. For example, gloss, semi-gloss finish is shiny and reflective, which makes the colors pop and attract attention. However, it can also be prone to fingerprints and glare. The matte finish is smooth and non-reflective, which gives a more professional and elegant look. However, it can also be less vibrant and fade over time.

The thickness of the paper is measured in grams per square meter (gsm) or pounds per ream (lb). The higher the gsm or lb, the thicker and heavier the paper. Thicker paper is more durable and resistant to tearing, bending, or wrinkling. However, it is also more expensive and requires more ink to print posters. Thinner paper is cheaper and easier to print but can also be flimsy and fragile.

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2. Cost Associated with Different Paper Sizes to Print Posters

Another obvious factor that affects the cost is the poster size. The larger the poster, the more paper and ink it requires, and therefore the more expensive it is to print. However, the cost per square inch may decrease as the size increases due to economies of scale.

The most common poster sizes are:

  • 8.5 x 11 inches (letter size)

  • 11 x 17 inches (tabloid size)

  • 18 x 24 inches

  • 24 x 36 inches

  • 27 x 40 inches (movie poster size)

The average cost of printing these sizes ranges from $0.50 to $20 per poster, depending on the paper quality, color option, and print method. For example, printing a letter-sized custom poster on standard paper in black and white using digital printing may cost as low as $0.50, while printing a movie-sized custom poster on glossy paper in full color using offset printing may cost as high as $20.

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3. Color Vs. Black & White Printing

Color poster prints use four colors of ink: cyan, magenta, yellow, and black (CMYK). Black and white printing uses only black ink. Color prints use more ink than black-and-white printing, which is more expensive. However, color printing also offers your poster more visual appeal and impact.

The average cost difference between color and black-and-white printing ranges from $0.10 to $1 per square foot, depending on the method and ink quality used in poster prints. For example, consider the pricing details, using digital printing with standard ink may cost around $0.20 per square foot for color prints and $0.10 per square foot for black and white prints, while using offset printing with premium ink may cost around $1 per square foot for color prints and $0.50 per square foot for black and white printing.

Choosing between color and black-and-white printing depends on your design goals and budget. Color printing may be worth the extra cost to create a stunning poster with vivid images and graphics. Besides, black-and-white printing may be sufficient to create a simple poster with mostly text or minimal graphics.

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4. Quantity Ordered

The more posters you order, the lower the unit cost due to volume discounts offered by most printers. However, the total cost will also increase as you order more posters.

The average volume discount for printing ranges from 10% to 50%, depending on the printer and the order size. For example, ordering 100 posters may cost $500 ($5 per poster), while ordering 200 posters may cost $800 ($4 per poster), saving you 20% per poster.

The quantity ordered depends on your printing needs and goals. If you need to distribute your posters to a large audience or display them in multiple locations, ordering more posters may be more cost-effective. However, ordering fewer posters may be more practical if you only need a few posters for a specific purpose or occasion.

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5. Cost Associated with Printing Technology Used

Another factor that affects the cost of posters is the printing technology used. There are different printing methods available, such as:

Digital Printing:

  • Cost: Digital printing is often more cost-effective for small to medium quantities of posters. It’s suitable for short runs and quick turnaround times.

  • Quality: This technique provides good quality for most purposes but may have limitations in reproducing certain colors accurately or handling extremely large poster sizes.

  • Flexibility: It’s easy to make last-minute changes to the design without incurring significant additional costs.

  • Suitable for Promotional posters, event signage, foam board prints, and small-scale marketing campaigns.

Offset Printing:

  • Cost: Offset printing is generally cost-effective for larger quantities of posters. There’s an initial setup cost, but the per-unit cost decreases as the quantity increases.

  • Quality: It offers high-quality results with precise color reproduction and fine details.

  • Flexibility: Changes to the design after the initial setup can be costly.

  • Suitable for Larger marketing campaigns, business promotions, and high-quality posters.

Large Format Printing (Inkjet or Dye-Sublimation):

  • Cost: Large format printing is suitable for printing larger posters and banners. Costs can vary depending on the size, type of ink used, and the material.

  • Quality: This technique can provide high-quality results for large displays and presentations.

  • Flexibility: Changes can be made relatively easily, but larger sizes might have limitations regarding available materials.

  • Suitable for: Trade show displays, foam board, conference posters, art prints, and outdoor banners.

Screen Printing:

  • Cost: Screen printing can be cost-effective for medium to large quantities. There’s usually a setup cost for creating screens, but the per-unit cost decreases with higher quantities.

  • Quality: It offers vibrant colors and is suitable for indoor and outdoor use.

  • Flexibility: Screen printing is less flexible for design changes after creating screens.

  • Suitable for: Special events posters, promotional materials, and apparel prints.

Laser Printing (for Small Posters):

  • Cost: Laser printing is suitable for small-sized posters and is often used for quick and inexpensive prints.

  • Quality: Quality is generally good but may not match other methods’ detail and color accuracy.

  • Flexibility: It is flexible for small quantities and quick turnarounds.

  • Suitable for: Personal projects, small-scale events, and temporary displays.

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6. Customization and Design Complexity & their Impact on Total Printing Cost

Customization and design complexity can indeed have a significant impact on the total cost of printing posters. Let’s break down how each of these factors influences the cost:


Customization involves tailoring the poster’s design to specific requirements, such as incorporating unique graphics, logos, text, and branding elements. The level of customization can impact the cost in the following ways:

  • Design Time: Creating a customized design takes more time and effort than pre-made templates. Designers or software must work on the layout, graphics, typography, and other elements to match the client’s vision.

  • Labor Costs: The time and expertise required for customization contribute to labor costs. Skilled designers or artists might be needed to create or modify graphics, logos, and other visual elements.

  • Proofing and Revisions: Custom designs often require several rounds of proofing and revisions to ensure the final product meets the client’s expectations. Each iteration adds time and potentially additional costs.

  • Materials: Depending on the complexity of the customization, you might need specific printing materials, inks, or finishes, which can be more expensive than standard options.

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Design Complexity:

Design complexity refers to how intricate and detailed the poster design is. Complex designs can include intricate patterns, gradients, fine details, and multi-layered graphics. Complexity affects the cost in the following ways:

  • Printing Time: Complex designs take longer due to the intricacies involved. The printer must carefully reproduce fine details and intricate patterns, which can slow the printing process.

  • Color Usage: Designs with complex color schemes or gradients might require more precise color calibration and adjustments, which can affect printing costs.

  • Ink Usage: Highly detailed designs can consume more ink, especially if they require dense coverage or a wide range of colors. This can increase the cost of materials.

  • Quality of Print: High-quality printing equipment and techniques might be necessary to ensure that complex designs are accurately reproduced, adding to the overall cost.

In summary, customization and design complexity can lead to increased costs for printing due to additional labor, materials, time, and equipment requirements.

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7. Additional Costs to Consider

Apart from the core factors mentioned above, several supplementary costs should be taken into account when budgeting for printing posters:

  • Shipping and Delivery Charges:

    If you’re ordering prints online or from a distant print shop, shipping and delivery costs can add to the total expenditure. Choosing local print shops or online services with competitive shipping rates can help mitigate this expense.

  • Quick or Same-Day Service Delivery:

    The lead time of most companies is about 3-5 business days for most orders. Urgent printing requirements often come with a premium price. Opting for regular turnaround times can save you from the additional costs of rush orders.

  • Additional Services Like Lamination, Mounting, Foam Board, and Framing:

    Enhancing the durability and presentation of your posters through services like lamination, mounting on foam boards, or framing can contribute to the final cost. While these services add value, they should be factored into your budget.

Choose PrintSafari for Premium Quality Poster Prints at Competitive Prices

When it comes to high-quality poster printing that doesn’t compromise on affordability, PrintSafari is your go-to solution. With a wide range of paper options, printing technologies, and customization possibilities, PrintSafari offers the ideal platform for all your printing needs. Our commitment to customer satisfaction, transparent pricing, and attention to detail sets us apart as the perfect choice for students, businesses, and event organizers alike. Contact us for custom quotes and transform your poster ideas into stunning, professionally printed reality.

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How Much Does Poster Printing Cost (2024)


How much does it cost to print out 50 posters? ›

More Prices
6 more rows

What is the average cost for a poster? ›

The average cost of printing these sizes ranges from $0.50 to $20 per poster, depending on the paper quality, color option, and print method.

How much is reasonable for a poster? ›

For example, a small A4 poster printed on standard copy paper will cost around £0.10 to print. If you want your poster to be printed on photo-quality paper, the price will be higher. An A4 sized photo quality poster will cost around £2 to print. The most giant posters are A0 size, and these will cost the most to print.

Are posters cost effectiveness? ›

Cost-effectiveness: Printed posters are low-cost and economical. They're also easy to produce in bulk, meaning you can reach more people for less money than other forms of publicity. Reach: Posters have excellent reach potential, making them ideal for targeting large audiences.

Why are poster prints so expensive? ›

One of the main reasons art prints are expensive is the cost of materials. High-quality paper, inks, and frames add to the cost of producing an art print. Additionally, some art prints are printed using specialized techniques such as giclée printing, which can add to the price.

Where can I get free posters to print? ›

Where to Find Free Printable Wall Art
  • Pixabay. Pixabay offers millions of images you can download and use for free. ...
  • Library of Congress. The Library of Congress has a digital collection of images that are free to use. ...
  • NASA. ...
  • National Gallery of Art. ...
  • Biodiversity Heritage Library. ...
  • Old Book Illustrations. ...
  • Unsplash. ...
  • Morguefile.
Mar 25, 2021

How much is a professional poster? ›

Poster SizesProfessional Paper (most popular)Glare-Free Lamination
26 more rows

How much do people charge for poster design? ›

A common method is to charge by the hour, ranging from $100 to $150, for accurate estimates and quality work. This might seem steep, but hourly rates can reach $150-$250 for a professional, high-quality poster. While these prices might seem higher, they reflect the effort and skill required to create top-notch posters.

How much should I ask for a poster design? ›

Poster design that is done from and for big stake can charge more than 1K. It can also climb up to 5K based on the company or the client. But realistically, you can see that the average payment can range from one person to another. Moreover, there are also so many factors that affect the design cost.

What size poster sells best? ›

If your primary audience will be zipping by (or jammed tight) on the roadway, print large posters so you can easily attract the attention of many at once. Yes, in this case bigger is better and posters sized from 24 inches by 36 inches to 27 inches by 39 inches are your best bet.

How much is a graphic design poster? ›

Poster Design: £150 – £400.

Can posters be worth money? ›

There are several factors to be considered in determining the value of a print or poster. For example, the printing method used, the rarity, the physical condition of the item, and even the subject matter can all affect an item's value.

What are the disadvantages of using posters? ›

Space Limitations – While posters can be effective in certain settings, they also have a confined space for the amount of information they can convey. Due to their size and format, they may not be suitable for detailed messages or extensive content.

What is a good profit margin for posters? ›

Depending on your niche, competition, and design quality, you can set a profit margin from 20% to 90% for framed posters. There's a huge potential for a high profit margin, so it's a product worth considering.

How much do you charge for posters? ›

A common method is to charge by the hour, ranging from $100 to $150, for accurate estimates and quality work. This might seem steep, but hourly rates can reach $150-$250 for a professional, high-quality poster. While these prices might seem higher, they reflect the effort and skill required to create top-notch posters.

How much does it cost to advertise on posters? ›

Depending on the placement of the poster, the number of people who may see the poster can mean a highly impressive ROI. Businesses who opt for a full-page can expect to pay around £217-700 for ad space and anywhere from £9.95-200 for printing depending on the size and specifics of the poster design.

Does Walgreens make posters from pictures? ›

Photo Prints, Custom Cards, and Posters.

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