Double-Sided Printing vs. Single-Sided Printing: Which is Better for Your Business?
Something that always seems to perplex business owners is whether they should select double-sided printing or single-sided printing. There are, of course, pros and cons to either approach, but which one is better overall? By the end of this article, it should be a lot simpler to decide!
Pros and cons of double-sided printing
Also known as duplex printing, there are significant pros and cons of printing on both sides of a piece of paper.
- More efficient – You can easily track whichever document you’re looking for as the pages are bound together. Therefore, they’re a lot less likely to get lost.
- Saves paper – Printing on both sides of a page can cut your paper usage in half. You’ll not only save money, but you’ll also reduce your company’s environmental impact. In other words, this one is a big win-win for sure.
- More professional – Printing out documents that are bound together will elevate the feeling of professionalism. It’s also much easier for them to be read when you hand them to your clients.
- Some printers don’t support double-sided printing – If your current printer is one of them, you’d have to upgrade before double-sided printing becomes an option.
- It’s not all that easy – Instead of simply placing paper in your printer, you’ll also have to use a duplexing printer and set up special configurations to get it to work.
- More expensive upfront – Using double-sided printing requires more ink, which makes it more expensive initially.
Pros and cons of single-sided printing
Just as we discovered with double-sided printing, there are pros and cons to choosing single-sided printing, too. Truly, there is no particular way to print that doesn’t have pros and cons attached to it.
- It’s cost-effective – If you want to reduce your printing costs, there is no better way than to choose single-sided printing. Your printer will use less ink, which makes it more cost-effective.
- It’s easier – All you have to do is load the paper and print! There are no special settings, which makes this option by far the easiest, especially for people who are new to printing.
- It works with every printer – It doesn’t matter what type of printer you have; it has the ability to print on a single side. Additionally, it’ll be the default setting.
- Documents are less organized – Printing on just one side of the page makes it easier for one (or more) of your pages to become lost or separated.
- It wastes paper – You’ll use double the paper over double-sided printing. This wastes money and is an environmental nightmare. Even worse, if you use a larger paper size or high-quality paper, you’ll waste a lot of money, too.
- Looks less professional – For some, using single-sided printing has a less polished and less professional appearance.
Double-sided printing options
If you choose to print double-sided documents, you also have an entire other world of double-sided options, including:
- Double-sided card printing
- Double-sided postcard printing
- Double-sided invitation printing
- Double-sided cardstock printing
All the options listed above quite simply work better when you choose to print on both sides. For instance, using a double-sided invitation allows you to print information on both sides of the invite, which provides a much better usage of the allowable space.
When to choose double-sided printing
There are several times when choosing double-sided printing will work in your favor. In fact, it should be your first consideration anytime you need your documents to look more professional. It’s also a great decision if you want to save paper, or if you’re planning to print a postcard, invitation, etc.
When to choose single-sided printing
Single-sided printing is appropriate for when you don’t need to look professional. For example, if you need to print some documents to help you create a brand-new document, you could print them single-sided. You’ll save some money, and you also won’t have to mess with the printer’s settings. Basically, any time you don’t need to print on both sides for business reasons, it’s a good idea to stick to single-sided printing.
Cost comparison between double-sided and single-sided printing
There really isn’t a simple answer about what type of printing is better, but we can certainly say that single-sided printing is cheaper. However, in the following example about business cards, we can see how the price alone isn’t the only thing that should be considered.
For cost considerations, ask yourself the following:
- How much information do you need to give people? If you only need to give them your name, phone number, and title, it’s easy to print on one side. However, if you work in the IT industry, for instance, you may need to the flipside to provide more information.
- What is the purpose of your business card? Do you want to use your card to introduce yourself or do you want it to offer more details?
- When will you be using your card? Do you want people to be able to take notes on the blank side or do you need to give them all the information on your card?
- What is the importance of your card? Will you be giving them to only higher-ups or to everyone?
- How much can you spend? This one is probably the most important piece of the puzzle. Double-sided printing on a business card costs more than single-sided printing, but fortunately, it’s not double the cost.
Take into consideration all the questions asked above, plus this one. How much can you truly afford to spend? Let this be your guide to what type of printing you select.
Environmental impact of double-sided printing and single-sided printing
If the environment is a true concern for you, you’re going to want to start duplex (double-sided) printing. This method saves approximately 1 ton of greenhouse gases for every 100 reams. Additionally, it helps reduce energy costs. For some of you, this will be exactly the reason that you make the switch to double-sided printing.
Tips for successful double-sided printing
The best way to successfully print something double-sided is to perform a quick test first. Look at which side of the paper the print goes and make any adjustments necessary to your setup. Then, if the document you’re printing is in Word, do the following:
- Open Word, then click File
- Select Print
- Go to Print Settings and select Print on Both Sides
- Click Print
That’s all you have to do! Alternatively, you can turn to a company such as Sheer Print Solutions to print professional, high-quality double-sided documents for you.
Conclusion - which option is better for your business?
In truth, the best option for any business is to choose double-sided and single-sided printing. Use the single-sided option when your document won’t be seen by anyone else or when you only have one page to print. But when you’re going to be showing your documents, and when you have multiple pages to print out, it just makes good sense to print them double-sided.
As we’ve demonstrated, there is no clear answer to what type of printing works best. Each type has multiple pros and cons, which makes it difficult to select a true winner. However, if you care about the environment, it’s typically better to select double-sided printing.
Why not let Sheer Print Solutions take care of your printing needs? We provide high-quality results in a very short period of time and for a fantastic price! Contact us today to receive your free quote.
About The Author
Craig Sheer is the owner of Sheer Print Solutions, located in New York City & Portchester, NY. We are the proven leader for affordable, high-quality Digital and Offset, and Large Format Printing in NYC. Sheer Printing Solutions is your single source for solutions to all your printing, binding, warehousing and fulfillment needs.