Glossary of Promotional Product Terms


Blank products are exactly as they sound, the items missing any kind of identifying design or text.

Back to glossary Bitmap/Raster

Bitmap, or raster, images are lower in resolution and made from a collection of pixels. A good example would be the image you save from a Google search.

Back to glossary BPA-Free

Products that are made without bisphenol A, a plastic that’s rumored to have harmful effects, are known as BPA-free.

Back to glossary Digital Printing

An image, usually in full color, is printed directly onto your product via an Inkjet printer.
Also known as:

  • Full color transfer
  • CMYK printing
  • Four color process printing
Back to glossary Double Sided Imprint

This is when a custom design is printed on the front and back of a product. It works best for items like coolers, tote bags, and keychains.

Back to glossary Emboss/Deboss

Customized metal plates are heated to temperatures as high as 212°F and are used like stamps on the products, creating an indented or raised look.

Back to glossary Embroidery

A machine stitches your design or message onto fabric products like hats or t-shirts.

Back to glossary Graphic Design Vocabulary Words

If you’re adding a design to promotional products, you may come across common graphic design terms like:

  • Font
  • Pantone colors
  • Bitmap/raster
  • Vector
Back to glossary Font

This is the style of the text printed on your promotional products.

Back to glossary Heat Press/Transfer

A giant industrial iron at about 300°F transfers your design onto an item.

Back to glossary Imprint Area

The space or area where your message or design is printed is called an imprint area. This will vary in shape, size, and location from product to product.

Back to glossary Laser Engraving

As the name suggests, this is when your item is engraved using a laser. The process results in a design that won’t chip or fade over time.

Back to glossary Logo Colors

These are the colors used in your design and printed on the product. Don’t confuse them with the item color, which is the color of the product itself.

Back to glossary Pad Printing

Sometimes referred to as an ink imprint, this process involves a giant industrial stamp being used to decorate your products.

Back to glossary Pantone Colors

Pantone is an organization that developed their own distinct color system. Each color is assigned a special formula and number to distinguish it from a similar shade.

Back to glossary Proof

Think of this as proof that your design looks good. Items a virtual mockup of your design on your item of choice, usually sent virtually via email.

Back to glossary Rush Production

An item in rush production will spend less time being customized at the factory. Note that this typically requires an additional fee.

Back to glossary Rush Shipping

If you’re in a pinch, rush shipping is a good option as it reduces the number of days an item is in transit. It’s also referred to as expedited shipping.

Back to glossary Screen Printing

Green goo called emulsion is spread over a mesh screen and covered with UV-shielded ink to create a negative image. Colored ink is then spread over the screen to create the final design.
Also known as:

  • Full color transfer
  • CMYK printing
  • Four color process printing
Back to glossary Setup Fee

This varies from product to product, but the setup fee is the cost for the ink, machines, and labor that goes into customizing your items.

Back to glossary Wrap Imprint

A wrap imprint is a customizing option, usually for drinkware, where the design and text is printed on a PET film that’s applied directly to the bottle.

How is Your Logo Added to a Promotional Product? Your custom design or message is added to a promotional product using a variety of methods including:

  • Digital printing
  • Emboss/deboss
  • Embroidery
  • Heat press/transferLaser engraving
  • Pad printing
  • Screen printing
Back to glossary Vector

These are mathematical algorithms that allow graphics to be scaled and modified without them becoming blurry and jagged. It requires the use of programs like Illustrator or CorelDRAW.

Back to glossary

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