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Who do you order your custom printed cardboard boxes from?
August 16, 2011 8:04 AM   Subscribe

I need to order cardboard boxes for shipping products. Approximately 24″x20″x10″. They need to have my company's logo printed on them in black ink. They should be a basic brown box. We'd need 500 or 1000 at a time, probably. I see that there's quite a few places to order them online — BoxGeek, CustomerBoxes Now, etc — with varying prices. Ordering through them without a recommendation would be somewhat of a crapshoot, though. Does anyone have a good recommendation of a company they've worked with before? The size of the box isn't set in stone — if it's cheaper to go with a similar but different size, that's OK.
posted by defenestration to Travel & Transportation (12 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
My boss likes ULine for ordering the fancy shopping bags we use at the shop, and I've heard good things about them for boxes.
posted by bilabial at 8:07 AM on August 16, 2011


Seconding ULine here.
posted by odinsdream at 8:10 AM on August 16, 2011


Yeah, I've heard great things about ULine, but I was under the impression that they didn't do logo printing.
posted by defenestration at 8:24 AM on August 16, 2011


Yeah, on the Custom page at ULine, it appears that shipping boxes aren't an option. Bummer.

Any other ideas?
posted by defenestration at 8:43 AM on August 16, 2011


Printing that short of a run is going to be very expensive, particularly if your product isn't a high-end item that can absorb some of the packaging cost in the product cost. I'd suggest Plan B: plain boxes and then use either a label or inked-stamp for affixing your logo. Since you've specified black ink, a rubber stamp might be the way to go, then you don't have to retool every time you change/add a new box size.

FWIW, for our store, we've found that sourcing bags and boxes and other such things locally (if that's an option for you) essentially works out to about the same cost as U-Line once shipping is added in.
posted by webhund at 8:59 AM on August 16, 2011


Have you thought of getting large labels with your logo printed, and then put these on blank boxes?
posted by ddaavviidd at 9:31 AM on August 16, 2011


Before going with Uline (or Papermart, or any remote company), I'd check with a local box maker. Shipping a bundle of boxes is relatively expensive, and there are box makers in every decent-sized city (I think). A local guy will have quicker turnaround too.

Printing is another matter, and outside my expertise, but I agree that slapping a label on might turn out to be your best option.

I can't speak to the customer-service aspect of one company over another, but boxes are pretty much boxes. If you order boxes in a certain size and 200-lb test (most common) or 275-lb test or whatever, the product from one company is going to be practically indistinguishable from the product from another.
posted by adamrice at 9:39 AM on August 16, 2011


Shipping boxes might be pretty inefficient, so local is worth checking out. You could probably use a rubber stamp, label sticker or stencil if the printing is really pricey.
posted by theora55 at 9:54 AM on August 16, 2011


Yeah, I'm considering going the sticker on box route, but the owner likes the idea of a printed box. I'll keep looking around.

Thanks for all the ideas. If anyone has any more, I'd love to hear them.
posted by defenestration at 10:28 AM on August 16, 2011


If you think you will be printing more boxes in the future, it may work out okay in the end. You pay a lot for the initial silkscreen cut, but generally it's reusable (as long as you don't change anything).

But I would go local, I think, for a run that small.
posted by Lyn Never at 11:00 AM on August 16, 2011


Going local definitely make sense, but I have the feeling that most box suppliers don't do any sort of custom printing/branding, etc. This is all new to me, so I very well could be wrong. I'll look into it.

I'm based out of NYC, so there should be a lot of options. If anyone has an NYC specific advice, I'm all ears.

Thanks for being so helpful, everyone.
posted by defenestration at 12:02 PM on August 16, 2011


Atlas Container located in Severn MD has customers up & down the East Coast and does custom printing. I know their minimum blank box order is 250, you'll have to check on their custom logo minimum. They also have a plant in Connecticut)
1-800-394-4894

(the company I work for has used them since 1979)
posted by jaimystery at 12:10 PM on August 16, 2011


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