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Getting to Know Print Basics

We use print to engage, educate, promote, facilitate, and sell. Print is a physical, attention-grabbing media that is a valuable alternative to our cluttered digital communication channels - email and social media. Even 62% of the digital natives in the Millennial generation said they visited a store in the past month based on information they received in the mail, according to the Millennials and the Mail report from the USPS Office of Inspector General. Customers choose print because it gets in front of people, often at the point of need, so that they can engage and react.

Six Segments of the Print Industry

There are many types of printed products that fill various business and consumer needs, from invitations and posters to direct mail and outdoor signage. Each product or application determines what type of printing process is required and may also narrow the requirements and specifications, like paper type and format size.

To meet the diverse needs of people buying print, the printing industry can be organized into six major segments:

  • Commercial
  • Transactional
  • Packaging
  • Sign and Displays
  • Decorative
  • Functional



Commercial includes most document-based printing for business communication like brochures, posters, and business cards, as well as book, catalog, and periodical publishing. Commercial print applications facilitate commerce, but consumer-focused printing like photo books, wedding invitations, and birth announcements are also produced by commercial printers.

Most of the 4over marketing products are within the commercial segment.


Transactional printing covers most data-driven bills, statements, and regulatory mail, as well as insurance claims checks and policies and healthcare-related communication. Direct mail sometimes falls within this segment because it also uses addresses and other data to inform the communication between a business and the recipient.

4over offers direct mail under mailing services.


Packaging is used to transport and store other products. It takes the form of corrugated and paperboard boxes and flexible pouches. We include labels in this segment because most products require some type of label – think of product and nutritional information labels.

See 4over paper board boxes and labels & stickers for options.

Signs & Displays

Signs and displays come in many shapes, sizes, and materials for use indoors and outdoors. Signs and displays provide information while capturing attention, like feather-shaped flags used by retail businesses to draw in customers or way-finding signs used in real estate.

See the full range of indoor and outdoor signage under large format products at 4over.


Decorative printing involves printing on specialty substrates like ceramics, glass, laminates, wood, textiles, and plastics for consumer and industrial uses. A custom tote bag from 4over is a consumer example of decorative printing, while laminate flooring is a well-known industrial example.


Functional printing includes niche products like printed electronics and 3D prototyping used for purposes other than communication.



The team at 4over makes it easy to find and order the most popular printed products to engage and communicate with your customers. Templates for use in graphic design programs can be downloaded to streamline the design process to ensure the proper fit and finish. The rest of the ordering process is also simplified by suggesting specific sizes and materials that are appropriate for that type of printed product. For example, business cards are offered in standard sizes across a selection of traditional weights and thicker stocks with the ability to add premium finishes under the Majestic product series. With the launch of a new educational series, Print 101, 4over provides even more insights and education for understanding all aspects of printing — from design to finishing. Get enrolled now!


4over is always here to help you grow your business and deliver for your clients. And as a trade-only printer and promo provider, 4over will never compete with you—the best measure of our success is yours!

4over LLC is one of the largest wholesale trade printers in the US, with multiple production facilities across North America. A trusted source of print fulfillment since 2001, the company helps large franchise printers, single print shops, print brokers, graphic designers, photographers, and every type of print reseller in between grow profitable businesses by offering a vast selection of quality products at guaranteed trade-only prices. With capabilities such as gang-run offset, digital, grand format, and promotional printing, plus state-of-the-art equipment, 4over offers every customer savings, selection, and scale. Not yet a 4over reseller? Register Today!


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As one of North America’s largest trade-only printers and a trusted source for print fulfillment since 2001, 4over helps print, design, and other creative services resellers grow profitable businesses. We do this by offering a vast selection of quality print products at guaranteed trade-only prices. Our expansive e-commerce catalog includes everything from standard marketing collateral like business cards and brochures, to harder-to-find specialty, large format, and promotional products.

Our capabilities span gang run offset, digital, grand format, and promotional printing across six production facilities, staffed by experienced, committed operations teams. With locations across North America, state-of-the-art equipment such as powerful Incas and Scodix UV machines, and fast turnarounds, 4over offers our customers savings, selection, and scale. We serve large franchise printers, single print shops, print brokers, graphic designers, photographers, and every type of print reseller in between. Learn more at Trade.4over.com

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