Printed Catalog Design Secrets

If your business has numerous products and services that you sell, catalog printing is a great way to quickly show what you have to offer.  Printing catalogs can be an overwhelming task, but there are several things you can do to make this process as painless as possible.
 
Page count
Multi-page documents are printed in four page increments.  Catalogs, as an example, are printed across a large sheet of paper which is then folded and bound to other sheets of paper. This is important to understand while you are planning your catalog printing.  While it can be difficult to plan an entire catalog at the outset, you should be able to get within four pages.
 
Formatting
Now that you know how many pages you need, start planning how your pages will look.  This can be done by simply drawing a sketch with boxes that represent pictures and lines to represent text.  The goal here is to get an idea of how each page looks and then you can begin gathering pictures and product descriptions.
 
Graphics and images
Next, start pulling together all of your product images and graphics you’ll be using throughout your catalogs.  It’s hardly a catalog without pictures of the products, so it is important that your images are produced professionally.
 
Once you have all of your images together in one place, make sure that you save the files at a resolution of 300 dpi.  Resolutions above 300 dpi will not improve image quality, but below that number can produce fuzzy and unclear images.
 
One other point about the pictures: you need a know what kind of printing presses your favorite printer will be using.  If it is an offset printer, you’ll have to convert your images from RGB to CMYK.  Your printing company can help you with this process.
 
Product descriptions
Your customers will want details about the products.  Pictures are great, but do not forget to provide them with details needed to make an informed decision.  Depending on the industry you work in, technical specifications may also be necessary.
 
Layout
At this point, the hard work is over.  You just need to start putting the images onto the appropriate pages along with the corresponding product description.  This is where your catalog really starts to come together.  While layout work can be tedious, remember that this is a last step before you send off your catalog to the presses.
 
Don’t forget to have a proof, or test copy, printed off so you can review your catalog.  Check for typographical errors, color discrepancies, or general formatting issues.  It is important to have a test copy in your hand as it is easy to lose objectivity after having stared at a computer screen for so long.

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