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What Type of Paper Is Used for Flyer Printing?

Type of Paper Used for Flyer Printing

So you’ve worked hard on a great design for your flyer, but did you know that the type of paper you use for printing is just as important? Printing flyers might sound like a straightforward process, but it can be difficult to make the right choice when it comes to the type, size, and finish for your perfect flyer.

Many people believe that paper selection comes as the last step during the design process of a flyer when in actuality it should be one of the first decisions you make. For example, if your budget is one of your most important considerations, then you should go with a design that works well on many kinds of paper and is inexpensive. Or, if you want to go with a piece that will stand out, then having paper personality in mind will help you when creating your flyer design.

Let’s discuss some of the main types and finishes of paper available and how you can decide which type of paper is best for your flyer.

Key Paper Type Factors

The feel of the paper you choose contributes greatly to the overall experience of your audience when they physically interact with your flyer.

Just how important is having a pleasant tactile feel? Some research points out a direct relationship between emotions and sensory stimulation. A flyer will not just affect our visual senses, it also communicates to us through touch, which is just as valuable. So, look beyond simply engaging your customers with the look of your design. Instead, turn some attention to giving them a “high quality” feel, as well.

Paper Sizing

One of the first decisions you should start thinking about for your flyer is its size. There are standardized sizes out there, which help printing companies minimize wasted space when printing out flyers, and makes printing more efficient and practical.

Trim Zones

During the design process of your flyer, you should always make accommodations for trim zones, or crop lines. There is always some amount of variance in cutting, so it’s best practice for more important text to be well away from the edges in order to reduce the risks of being cut off.

It’s also important to know the exact dimensions of the paper sizes when designing, so you know that your graphic will look exactly how you envisioned it. You wouldn’t want your printer to adjust the aspect ratio of your image to fit, since this would lead to distortion.

Postcard Sizes

Flyers that are postcard-sized can be an effective and dynamic means of sending out your marketing message. Even though they are small, it makes them a great option for placing in areas with high visibility. You can often find many businesses that are willing to place your 4” x 6” or 5” x 7” postcards beside the register for their customers to see.

A larger postcard-size flyer is about the size of a standard sheet of printer paper folded in half; 5.5” x 8.5” or 6” x 9”. These are the perfect size for direct mailing, handing out, or for use as magazine inserts. Postcards can be ideal because individuals are more likely to keep these conveniently-sized materials when received.

Printer Paper Size

A standard printer paper size is 8.5 x 11”. It is a highly recognizable size, which is big enough to contain a lot of information. This is the ideal size for standout direct mail, handing out individual units, and it is also large enough to display on a door or a window.

Large Sizes

If your flyer contains more than one page, then you might want to consider using a larger print size. For example, when you print out a magazine, your printer may need you to provide a graphic layout, which allows them to print out multiple pages on the same sheet. Then, the magazine is assembled through trimming, collating, folding, and stitching or binding.

Creating a graphic layout for multiple pages can be confusing, and it might include printing pages back to back on the same sheet. When attempting to print complex pieces, you should rely on guidance from your direct mail marketing printers for the best results.

Paper Finishes

Another big factor to consider is the finish of your paper. The finish will contribute greatly to the overall impact of your flyer, its durability, and marketing effectiveness. You should pick a finish that helps enhance your message and make your flyer stand out. The three basic choices for paper finish are gloss, matte, and uncoated.


Glossy finishes are the simplest way to get a dynamic and vibrant finish on your flyer. A glossy finish is best used for flyers that have a lot of images or flyers that will be handled outdoors. Gloss coating is quite shiny and is sure to gain attention because of that shininess. It also results in quicker production time because most professional flyer printing jobs use gloss coating, so the presses are always ready to go.


Matte finishes are more subtle and classy compared to glossy finishes. If you will be designing a flyer for a luxury direct mailing, or to sit inside of a coffee shop, then pick a matte finish. This is a great choice if your flyer contains a lot of text, or sophisticated artwork. There is still some elegant shine, but certainly not as “shiny” as gloss.


An uncoated finish will mean that your flyer is less durable, but there are some advantages. If you are designing a flyer that you want people to write on, then you should go with an uncoated finish. Uncoated finishes are also great for delivering an environmentally-friendly feel for “just the basics”. This finish may also be considered unique and personal, since coated stocks are more frequently requested.

Need to fulfill your flyer printing needs?

It’s always a good idea to take some moments to consider your paper options so you can get the most out of your flyer printing. You’ll need to pick the perfect size and finish for your marketing message to really shine. If you have any questions about direct mail paper sizes or finishes, or if you would like further information about direct mail marketing, please call Troi Mailing Services in Canada at 1-866-486-9350 or contact us here.

About: Seamus Barton
Seamus Barton - Author
Seamus Barton joined Troi Mailing Services in 2014 after graduating from York University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Professional Writing. As a manager of print and direct mail solutions, he sees how words play an important role in personalizing any experience. Seamus’ passion for writing motivates him to provide frequent direct marketing content that supports each Client’s individual needs. Please chat with Seamus about commercial printing and direct mailing campaigns, or about how to marry digital and physical strategies for optimal Smartmail Marketing success.

You can connect with Seamus on LinkedIn or by calling Troi Mailing Services at 1-866-486-0423 or via email at Read his latest article featured in Direct Marketing Magazine on “Dimensional Mail: Marketing’s Buffet Lobster

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