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Leaflet Design, Print and Distribution Costs

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Leaflet Design Costs

The cost of designing a professional looking leaflet or flyer is not substantial, particularly when also having the leaflet printed at the same company.

Generally the cost will be in the region of £60, although some designers charge on a per hour basis so the cost does vary. It’s highly recommended to agree a set price at the start – per hour pricing simply rewards inefficiency. Also, if your leaflet requires a number of images this can increase the price as often these must be purchased.

It’s also worth noting that some printing companies offer free design providing you place a minimum order for the printing of the leaflets. This tends to be the most time and cost-effective way for startups to get leaflets designed and printed.

Leaflet Printing Costs

The cost of printing leaflets depends on their size, the number of colours used, whether the leaflet is one or two-sided, the quantity ordered, a gloss, matt or laminated finish, and how thick the material is.

Regarding VAT on the printed material, the rules in the UK are quite complicated. HM Revenue and Customs classifies most printed items, such as postcards, posters and promotional stationary, at its standard rate of VAT (17.5%), but there are some notable exceptions.

In general, leaflets & flyers are VAT-free unless one of the following is applicable:

  • If an area of your leaflet is designed to be written on by customers it is likely to be classed at the standard rate for VAT.
  • Mentioning a discount promotion, such as “20% off when you show this leaflet”, means that the leaflet is classified as a voucher and VAT of 17.5% must be paid.
  • Mentioning “free entry with this flyer” results in the flyer being classified as a ticket so VAT must be paid.
  • Leaflets designed to be shown in shop windows are classified as posters and become eligible for VAT.
  • Finally, the use of thick paper or card, or laminating the leaflet results in HM Revenue and Customs determining that the leaflet is designed to be retained by the recipient, resulting in it being classified at the standard rate of VAT.

Some printing companies will still look to charge you VAT on leaflets and flyers even when they are classified as being exempt from VAT. Knowing the rules can help you negotiate a better deal for yourself.

Leaflet Distribution Costs

The cost of door-to-door leaflet distribution depends primarily on the leaflet distribution method. Estimated costs are below:

  • Solus Distribution: £50 per thousand
  • Shared Distribution: £30 per thousand
  • Local Newspaper Insert: £20 per thousand

The main concern when using a leaflet distribution company is reliability. There are many stories of businesses paying for leaflets to be distributed, only to get such a very poor response rate that the question arises whether all the leaflets were actually delivered.

Therefore don’t always choose the cheapest quote, ask and follow up references, and even consider meeting up with the leaflet distributors on the day.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Trevor Nicholls October 11, 2011 at 9:51 pm

Too True, do not pick the cheapest quote otherwise your leaflets are likely to end up in the skip. If you want a professional leaflet campaign done, then you should expect to pay a reasonable amount. I would suggest that the costs shown on this blog are probably a bit on the low side. For a solus job for example, a 1000 house delivery will take on average 7-8hours. The company need to pay a days wages as well as cover their overheads and make a profit. If they are only paying their staff £20-30 then how dilligent will the individual distributor be. Expect to pay a credible company £75-£100 for solus distribution

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leaflet distribution leicester March 10, 2012 at 4:30 pm

Great post, and i completely agree with Trevor. People assume every leaflet distribution company will provide the same level of service. The reality is very different. If a company is charging a low amount to secure work then they probably aren’t making enough to cover their costs. This means your leaflets are more likely to end up in the bin or dumped in a field. Opt for a middle of the range quote and carry out thorough checks on any distribution company you approach. Ask for references and testimonials and make sure you speak to their existing customers for feedback and to check their reliability. If they are professional and reputable they will be only too pleased to have you speak to their customers.

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