Start your desk top publishing (DTP) business

Not many people are aware that desktop publishing or graphic designing is an excellent idea for a small business. It is easy to start and require only small capital investment. Using DTP software one can publish wide range of printed materials without incurring expenses of commercial printing. DTP is a form of digital typography, where different page layouts are used in creating wide range of printed items such as – books, menus, directories, brochures, catalogs etc.

About this business opportunity

Both scopes and demand for DTP publishing has increased manifold over the years. If you have abilities to create appealing page layouts and editing other’s work then DTP business can be a great career option for you. Since commercial printing is expensive and time intensive, most small and medium size businesses depend on desktop publishing for their business communication material. It is affordable and immediate, which suits their requirements aptly. This creates a huge market demand for qualified DTP publishers across industries.

Current market trend

The current market shows a growing demand for DTP publishing works. The ideal place to start a DTP business is near schools, colleges, educational institutes, business centers, etc., where demand for such work would be high. Students seek qualified DTP publishing for their projects and thesis and similarly, businesses need it for their wide range of commercial requirements. Apart from that, DTP is required in wide range of fields from legal to entertainment. If you can type fast and have good writing abilities and concept of page layout and designing, you can enjoy great success as a DTP operator.

Level of competition

Depending on where you are and where you plan to start your business, competition may vary. But overall the market is highly competitive where thousands of DTP developers struggling for reaching out to their target market.

Success of your business will largely depend upon your abilities to identify the right market, promoting your services to them to keep the flow of new businesses coming in. Side-by-side you’ll also have to consider building long term relationship with your existing clientele that will ensure steady source of income.

Who can start this business?

If you are looking for an alternative to replace your income, DTP business can be great. With minimal set-up expense anyone can start a DTP business – working professionals, retired individuals, housewives, or students.

Aside from artistic abilities, becoming successful DTP operator also needs some additional skill sets, which we have mentioned below.

  • Knowledge in desktop printing software, like – Microsoft Pagemaker, Coral Draw etc.
  • Understanding of different type formats and page layouts
  • Knowledge of Photoshop can be added advantage
  • Some DTP operators also offer content creation services to clients. You too can do that if you have good writing skills
  • Along with, you would need computers with the latest configuration and licensed software
  • Entrepreneurial abilities and multi-tasking skills necessary for running small business


Starting a DTP job may require some initial investment such as – computers, Xerox machine, scanner, good quality printer, DTP software; and shop establishment expenses such as – rented space, chairs and desks, electricity bills etc. Despite initial investment a DTP business can achieve breakeven soon if you take time in marketing your services.

Website building

If you have a DTP business then building a business website is a good idea. It can become a formidable marketing tool in helping your client find your business easily. Nowadays, you can avail affordable website developing solutions from website designing and developing firms near you. Most of them have special rates and discounts for small business entrepreneurs. SEOTP in Bangalore offers small business training, mentoring and web hosting solutions to entrepreneurs to help them start off.

Buy this book to be a success in DTP business

Marketing plan

Visibility is most important for DTP businesses and therefore finding the right place to set your shop up is very important. But it is not a guarantee of customer footfall to your shop. In order to achieve success in your DTP business, you therefore need a consolidated marketing strategy that would help promoting your business across platforms.

Off line: Putting up banner or hoarding or simply a sign before your shop if the first step of marketing for a DTP business. Your objective would be to attract as many customers as possible and therefore you’d need visibility. Secondly, you can pay direct visits to your intended customers and make them aware of the services offered by you. Direct mailers, fliers, pamphlets or promotional goodies are great ideas of promoting your business to your customers.

Internet marketing: Internet marketing is affordable and therefore preferred by small entrepreneurs. Whether yours is a traditional brick and mortar establishment or an ecommerce solution, you can reach out to larger customer base using digital marketing avenues. You can learn the art of SEO and social media marketing from courses offered by SEOTP to small business entrepreneurs.