30 Simple Expert Tips for Designing a Booklet or Catalog

Written by Design, Marketing Collateral


Attractive booklets and catalogs are a fast way to impress new and existing clients for any business. If your business is just starting out, or branching into new markets, nothing serves you better than to produce a well put together, attractive booklet/catalog. Whatever the service you may provide, there are universal guidelines to make sure that your booklet/catalog both stands out, and has staying power in the minds of potential clients.

1. Draw them in with your headline

A dizzying, wordy cover is the quickest way to have your catalog or brochure go unnoticed. Make the name of your business stand out on the cover. You can add details of your business information on the inside.

2. Choose your colors wisely

This applies to the cover as well as the inside. Choosing highlighter pinks and yellows might work well for your cover, but inside be hard to read. If there are signature colors that your company has as their thru line, don’t hesitate to use them, but branching out into other hues to make things more readable inside is an asset to your catalog. If you choose the right printing service, they will offer multiple colors and schemes for your booklet/catalog.

3. Know your audience

 A booklet/catalog is a way of communicating to both first time customers and existing clients. The language, font and details you provide all factor in to whether customers are drawn in, or continue to stay with your business.

4. Include your signatures

 If there is a tagline, color, phrase or font that your business is known for, don’t hesitate to include it. Everything about your booklet/catalog should be related back to your business.

5. Limit your font use

Your booklet/catalog will look busy if there are multiple fonts being used in every paragraph. Stay on theme and make sure you choose a font that represents you, without confusing your reader. They are looking to be led through your business, not get lost in it.

6. Choose your information wisely

 Font matters, of course. The meat of your booklet/catalog, should be informative but concise. Remember that while the material will draw people in, they don’t need to be overwhelmed by clumped details.

7. Don’t let it be flimsy

There is nothing worse than putting your time and energy into a booklet/catalog to have it be crumpled up and forgotten in someone’s bag. Providing substantial information will help to prevent this. Your choice of paper will too. Printing companies offer many sturdier than average paper options for this.

8. Utilize Imagery

 Another way to put your unique stamp on a booklet/catalog is by including pointed images. A booklet/catalog without any is difficult to make captivating.

9. Pay attention to Image Quality

 Even if you are on a budget, skimping on images turns prospective clients away from your product. The quality of the images you choose should be shot well, and, you must trust the company you choose to print to translate the images cleanly.

10. Incorporate Shapes

 A simple way to be creative is use of shapes. This can take the form of your images, pockets of information, even the booklet/catalog itself.

11. Choose the right Template

There are many templates to choose from. Don’t choose one that is unexciting, to get the most out of your template.

12. Be concise

Keep your readers attention by slimming down the details. Booklets/catalogs serve as a directory to your business. Utilize bullet points, numbered lists and text bubbles to draw the attention of your reader.

13. Keep contact accessible

 Your contact information is vital to have visible in your booklet/catalog. Does your business have social media? Include it inside your catalog. Link your business into your product in as many ways as you can.

14. Don’t overstretch the vocabulary

Your design, style and details need to be concise, so does your vocabulary. A booklet/catalog is something that includes everyone, it doesn’t confuse or meddle with your message to any reader.

15. Cultivate a mood

What is the goal of your business? Make it apparent in the overall design of your booklet/catalog.

16. Synchronize

Every page, every section of your booklet/catalog needs to flow seamlessly together. The theme, design, and topics will all be responsible for keeping your booklet/catalog one cohesive item.

17. Let creativity shine

 This does not mean that you need to have wacky colors or busy fonts. If your business is understated, include images and phrases that will catch a reader’s eye. Providing referrals to discounts, programs, other resources for utilizing your business are also ways to be creative and stand out.

18. Who do you want to attract?

Identify who your customers are, as well as who your potential customers could be, and design for them. If your audience is older, simpler formatting will be in order. If they are a younger audience, consider incorporating tags to social media and sharper designs.

19. Let them know who you are

 The cover of your booklet/catalog displays the name of your company. On the first inside page, add your mission statement. They have been drawn in to get to know them, tell them who you are.

20. Go Green!


Choosing the unique stamp of using recyclable, green paper to create your booklet/catalog sets yours apart from others. Choosing a company that offers switching to green products at no extra cost to you is a wise decision.

21. Gather inspiration

While you plan your booklet/catalog, don’t hesitate to take a note from others. Look at catalogs, templates and designs other business’ have chosen. Notice what they did right and more importantly, what they did wrong. Don’t repeat their mistakes.

22. Don’t copycat

 While gathering ideas from other catalogs/booklets, can build your creativity, refrain from making yours too similar. If you and another business are too similar in the design or look of your booklet/catalog your customers could become confused.

23. Make something worth keeping

 A booklet/catalog done right can last a company for a long time. Keeping your dates less specific and providing as much core information as possible will be key in getting your customers a booklet/catalog they can consistently refer to over time.

24. Lead in with a brochure

 Brochures are an easy way to attract customers to your business. Putting our a simple, bold, colorful brochure to couple with your booklet/catalog is an additional way to bring in business.

25. Consider your options

Time and energy goes into creating a booklet/catalog. That being said if the design you’ve built strikes you as unworkable, scrap it and start again. These items can last a company for a long time, there is no need to settle on an unattractive option.

26. Gain exposure

 There is no reason to produce a booklet/catalog if it is not going to be visible to your clients. Rather than it sitting in a crowded wall display, consider mailing plans like Every Door Direct Mail by the U.S. Postal service to make sure you get seen.

27. If you need help, ask!

Planning a booklet/catalog takes a serious commitment to designing and planning. To take yours the extra mile, or if you just don’t think that your plan is the best it could be, consult a graphic design services. PrintLeaf offers that service, keeping your printing and planning all in the same spot.

28. Get the most print for your money

 Printing your booklet/catalog requires a large number of copies. Booklet/catalogs are things that your client or potential client will want to take with them. Running out of copies is embarrassing and a loss for your company. Print more booklets/catalogs with a company that will make sure your job is worth it.

29. Choose the right printing service

 Your budget, time and style are all important factors for making sure your booklet/catalog project is a success. The printer of your product will determine the final result. Don’t fumble at the finish line, choose your printer wisely.

30. Don’t rush it!

Booklets/catalogs are a complicated process. They take time to plan. But, if you need to rush, or just want your printing done in a timely, well executed fashion, contact Printleaf NYC Rush Printing  today!

Last modified: January 31, 2020

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