[SERIES] POS #2 of 6 - production materials

April 27, 2014

In this 6-part series covering everything an Account Manager should know about Point of Sale/POS material (also known as Point of Purchase/POP material) we will be exploring the many facets of creating and incorporating dynamic POS into your client's campaign.

  1. What is the purpose of POS?
    Different types of POS
  2. Substrates for POS production
  3. How to plan your POS
  4. Six shopper insights
  5. What makes for good POS design?
  6. AIDA: what is it?


Substrates for POS production

With so many substrates to choose from, selecting the right material for your POS can be confusing. The list, below, covers the most common types of POS substrates available, and the applications they are best suited for. If you have another favourite substrate that's not listed, please let us know!

As soon as you have received the brief from your client, it's a good idea to then walk hand-in-hand with your printing company to plan the best substrates and printing methods for the job. Choices will depend on quantity, quality cost and timing.



Available in a large selection of weights from 90gsm - 400gsm.

  • leaflets
  • flyers
  • posters
  • shelf strips
  • inserts


Folding Boxboard

A step up in thickness over paper, this type of card is available as either a single sided board or a double sided board. This refers to the coating on each side of the board for printing purposes for quality of finish and its usage is dependent on the application and type of product. 
Due to the wide applications of this substrate, boxboard is usually measured in gsm and microns but - generally speaking - this material fills the gap between paper and display board.


  • CTU’s (counter top units)
  • product display boxes
  • shelf barkers
  • wobblers
  • graphics panels
  • hanging banners
  • cube displays
  • tent cards
  • bus stops
  • hanging lightbox units
  • swing tags
  • mobiles



Display board

A solid heavyweight board comprising of a recycled material sandwiched between high quality boxboard liners. Produced in a range of thicknesses ranging from 750 micron – 2500 mic.


  • header boards for CTUs (counter top units) or FSDUs (free standing display units)
  • gondola end headers
  • large tent cards
  • standees
  • leaflet dispensers
  • strutted showcards
  • large bus stops
  • hanging banners
  • 3D displays
  • hanging lightbox units
  • mobiles



Corrugated board

A lightweight but durable fluted board. Available in many different configurations. The most commonly used in the POS sector are E Flute (approx. 1mm thick with close fluting), B Flute (approx. 4mm thick with wide fluting) and EB Flute (a combination of both E and B Flute for extra rigidity). These are all available with different types of lining for either printing direct to substrate or for print and mount purposes and sheet sizes can be any size, dependant on quantity ordered.


  • CTUs (counter top units)
  • FSDUs (free standing display units)
  • standees
  • product display boxes
  • pallet wraps
  • dump bins
  • 3D displays
  • stacking units



Rigid PVC

A rigid PVC film calendared to give a high gloss finish on both sides or a smooth matt finish on both sides. Available in thicknesses from approx. 140 micron – 950 micron and usually available in white and clear. An Opal version is also available for backlit applications.

  • posters
  • hanging banners
  • backlit posters
  • shelf strips
  • wobblers
  • mop trays for FSDUs
  • wallets and ticket holders
  • mobiles
  • external signage



A layer of polystyrene foam lined both sides with matt white paper. Available in very large sheet sizes in 3mm, 5mm and 10mm thicknesses. This material is incredibly lightweight and can also be quite fragile. This is ideally suited to indoor hanging applications. 

  • hanging banners
  • mobiles


Foam PVC

A durable, hard-wearing white or black Foam PVC which is available in large sheet sizes and up to 10mm thick.
  • external signage
  • wall signage



A thermoplastic polymer available in a variety of colours, finishes and thicknesses. Very durable and kinder to the environment than PVC due to its ease of recycling. 
Perfect for screenprinting, digital printing and for use with vinyl. This is also available as a fluted board (e.g. Corflute). Thicknesses 3.3mm through to 8.0mm.

  • exterior signs
  • event signs
  • folders
  • indexing cards


Synthetic Paper

Synthetic papers are durable, tear resistant, high UV resistance, and suitable for exterior use. 

  • Backlit (lightbox) posters

Removable and reusable synthetic papers (e.g. Yupo Octopus) are an alternative to electrostatics. They stick to clean, dry smooth surfaces such as glass, acrylic, PVC and alumunium. They are easier to apply than electrostatic (especially with large-size POS), leaving fewer bubbles after application.

  • window graphics
  • retail POS (glass countertops, whiteware, mirrors, cookware, etc)
  • temporary car graphics (e.g. in a showroom)


Self Cling

Also know as "friction stick", "electrostatic" or "static cling". This is a non-adhesive backed vinyl commonly used for window graphics. 
This material is re-usable (e.g. it can be applied to a particular window for a period of time and then it can be taken down and moved to another window).  It also has the benefit of not leaving any residue when stripping away from the window. 
Available in transparent or white.

  • window graphics
  • retail POS (glass countertops, whiteware, mirrors, cookware, etc)


Self Adhesive Vinyl

Available in transparent, white gloss, white matt, coloured and even a large range of speciality products (e.g. brushed aluminium). Permanent or removable adhesive backing. Similar in application to Self Cling, the difference being this material uses an adhesive coating to stick on to the surface it’s applied to. This is better to use for more permanent graphics and stickers. 


  • product stickers
  • over stickers
  • window decals
  • labels



Floor Media

This is a specialist material for displaying graphics on all types of flooring, whether inside or outside.
 There are two elements to this media kit, the first of which is the self adhesive vinyl. 

This is available in clear or white and is the substrate on which the graphic is printed to. 
On the reverse of this vinyl is the adhesive coating.
The type of adhesive is dependent on the surface of which the graphic is to be applied to (e.g. concrete, floor tiles or carpet). 

The second part to the floor media is the over-laminate. 
This is a rugged slip-resistant laminate, again with an adhesive reverse. This is applied over the printed graphic forming a protective layer. 

  • interior and exterior floor graphics


Holographic and 
mirror papers and board

These are specialist foils mounted on to various weights of card. 

The range of designs are broad and can add an eye-catching look to any type of POS application.
The mirror board range comes in a variety of different colours including silver and gold and with a smooth, glossy or silk finish.

The holographic range includes rainbow effects, dotted effects, water effects and many more.

  • all types of indoor POS-related collateral


Enjoy this article? You'll love these...

[SERIES] POS #1 of 6: purpose and types
[SERIES] POS #3 of 6: how to plan your POS
[SERIES] POS #4 of 6: six shopper insights
[SERIES] POS #5 of 6: what makes for good POS design?
[SERIES] POS #6 of 6: AIDA: what is it?


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