How To Start a Profitable Printing Service Business in Africa

Are you in search of a money-making venture that does not require a college degree? Or seeking more streams of income? Look no further! This beautiful piece will reveal to you an exciting and profitable business that you can begin effortlessly.

Have you ever considered a printing service business? This could be your golden opportunity, especially in Africa, even while juggling a 9-5 job or other businesses. Come along as this article uncovers how to start a profitable printing business in Africa. 

What is a Printing Service Business?

A printing service business deals with replicating text and images on physical media like paper, fabric, and other materials through an equipment known as a “printing machine.” With some level of technical know-how, you can easily excel in such a business, especially when you combine most of the segments. Some of the services offered by a printing business include:

  • Photocopying, printing and scanning
  • Graphic design
  • Production of business card
  • Flyers
  • T-Shirts production
  • Posters
  • Brochures

Read Also: Top 10 Utility Software for Your Business

Types of Printing Services

There are different types of printing services and several technologies employed in the printing business, each suited for the specific purposes and needs of customers.

It is important that you know and understand these various types, as it will guide you in satisfying your customers according to their varying needs.

1. Digital Printing

This involves printing digital files, e.g., images and texts, on different materials such as paper, card stock, t-shirts, banners, textiles, ceramics, polythene, and wood. This method is widely used by many printing companies due to its simplicity and ease of use. 

Digital printing is mostly applied when you need to print on a few quantities of materials. With digital printing, you can easily print images from your computer to your choice of material.

2. Screen Printing

This printing method involves a process that uses a mesh screen to transfer ink onto a substrate like paper, fabric, or other customer-choice materials. This printing method can produce vibrant and long-lasting prints on different surfaces. Screen printing is used in many industries for promotional items, packaging, and even cloth designs.

3. Large Format

As the name implies, “large,” this type of printing service is applicable when you need to come up with prints larger than the standard printing size. The technique is usually applied by corporate organizations and SMEs for billboard advertisements, architectural designs, and promotional displays. Examples of large formats include banners, signage, and posters.

4. 3D Printing

This is a unique form of printing mostly used in industries like architecture, automotive, fashion, healthcare, etc. It is usually applied to the production of customized/ complex shapes that may not be achievable through traditional printing methods. A digital printer creates a physical object. 3D printing can also be called Additive manufacturing, architectural modelling, rapid prototyping, etc.

5. UV Printing

Known in full as ultraviolet printing or curing processes, UV printing applies ultraviolet light to harden links or coatings that have been applied to a substrate. This type of printing is quite fast, reliable, and more precise than the traditional method of drying in the printing process.

How Lucrative is the Printing Service Business?

Before getting into any business, it is crucial to determine if it is productive. This is to help you decide if such a business is worth investing in or not. So let’s address the big question; how lucrative is the printing business?

A printing service business is one of the most highly profitable businesses in Africa. If you know all the nitty-gritty of the business, you can actually break through and make a fortune in the industry.

For instance, in Nigeria, you can make a minimum of N3,000 per printing. If you make an average of 20 printing a day, that’s a whopping N60,000. However, you can be operating at a loss from the start if you don’t fully comprehend the industry and market.

Read Also: 50 Small Business Ideas to Start with Less Than $100 in Africa

Guides to Starting a Profitable Printing Service Business

Starting up a printing business is a great idea for you. Though the equipment is quite expensive, it is worth investing in if you understand how it works and, of course, devise your strategy. Below, you will discover some steps that will guide your journey to starting a profitable printing service business:

1. Understand the Printing Service Business

The first step to take is to understand the specifics of printing service businesses. You must have good knowledge of the technical, financial, marketing, and other aspects of the business.

If you need to attach yourself to an expert in that field, please do! It is important because not all knowledge can be acquired from just the pages of a book. Besides, the printing service business is practical. Have a unique business name and get it registered.

2. Register your Printing Business

One of the very first steps to take in running a profitable service business in Africa is to choose a business name. Select a name that easily describes what you do, e.g. “Goodly Prints”. It is also important to choose a name that your clients can easily pronounce and remember. After that, proceed with registering it following the standards set by your state or country.

3. Build your Brand

Now that you have all the necessary printing service knowledge and your company is legal, it’s time to build your brand. To build a brand simply means to create an identity for your business. 

It involves creating awareness of your business and letting your potential clients know what makes it stand out from others. Branding has to entail a whole lot that you will understand as you read on.

4. It is Time for Aggressive Marketing

Next, begin some serious online and guerilla marketing for your business. Guerilla marketing simply involves public stunts, viral marketing, and other attention-grabbing approaches. Ensure you carry out thorough print, broadcast, and online media campaigns to create awareness for your brand, promote sales, and drive engagement. Here are some tips for effective marketing:

  • Put up attractive sign boards in front of your outlet
  • Share your business flyers in your neighbourhood and also run paid ads across all social media platforms.
  • Give discounts and also do some giveaways
  • Put up a video about your business and send it across your social media platforms.

5. Build a Good Team

This is the best part. At the beginning of your business, you may need to carry out most of the roles yourself. However, as the business grows, you will require extra hands. Some of the relevant roles you will need to fill up include:

  • Graphic designers
  • Machine operators
  • General manager
  • Marketer
  • Accountant
  • Social media manager

How To Build a Unique Brand for your Printing Service Business in Africa

1. Design a Unique Logo for your Business

If you are good at graphic design, you could do this for yourself. Otherwise, get a good graphic designer to create a beautiful logo for you. Your logo should be simple yet detailed and attractive.

2. Create a Business Flyer (E-copies and Hardcopies)

A good business flyer usually contains a summary and slogan for your business. Your flyer should have:

  • Your location boldly stated
  • Companies contact details: phone number, email address, website, and social media handles
  • Listings of services offered
  • A unique selling point in one sentence.
  • Any ongoing offers, promotions, and discounts
  • Call to action: e.g., sign up now… for more enquiries, join the revolutionizing and other captivating CTA’s.

Read Also: How to Start a Food Packaging Business in Africa in 2023

3. Build a Strong Online Presence

Having a physical location for your business is awesome, but to reach a wider and global audience, you must go digital and be strategically active on every social media platform. You could also set up a website to make it more accessible to a new market. 

For frequent postings and monitoring engagement and analytics, it would be great to hire a social media manager.


One interesting fact about the printing service business is that it can easily be set up and does not require a lot of funding to start. With top-notch equipment, you are crafting a legacy and won’t have to channel your energy into frequent machine repairs but instead focus on delivering flawless printing services. 

Ensure you also start up your new business in a strategic location, because this time you need to cast a wide net and make your mark. 


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Oluwakemi Oladeji
Oluwakemi Oladeji
Hi, I am Oluwakemi Oladeji , a content writer and a storyteller.

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