Personalized Coffee Mugs Buying Guide

Posted July 29, 2010

Shop Promotional Coffee Mugs


Why Buy Custom Coffee Mugs?

When it comes to marketing, promotional coffee mugs are one of the most cost-effective ways to attract attention to your organization. There’s no disputing that coffee is an important part of American culture. Check out the following coffee statistics to consider the effectiveness of coffee mug promotions:

  • 54% of Americans age 18 and older drink coffee daily
  • The average size of a coffee cup is 9 ounces
  • Coffee drinkers consume an average of 3.1 9-ounce cups of coffee daily
  • Coffee drinkers spend an average of $164.71 on coffee annually
  • There are 100 million daily coffee drinkers in the U.S.
  • 24% of coffee drinkers consume over 13 cups of coffee weekly
  • 30% of coffee is consumed between meals
  • 60% of American coffee drinkers claim to need a cup of coffee to start their day
  • 54% of American coffee drinkers say coffee makes them feel ‘more like themselves’
  • 68% of American coffee drinkers have a cup within the first hour of waking up
  • $18 billion is spent on specialty coffee in the U.S. annually

Promotional coffee mugs not only have a higher perceived value than many other promotional items, but they also have a lasting usefulness that other business gifts lack. You probably have at least one imprinted coffee mug in your home or office that you’ve used again and again. With so many choices in styles and materials, it can be a daunting task to choose the right promotional mug for your business. Let’s take a look at some of the most popular types of custom mugs.

Types of Promotional Coffee Mugs

When choosing a type of promotional coffee mug, consider your message and target audience. Do you intend for your promotional mugs to be used in the home or office, where the message will be visible primarily to the end user and those closest to them? Go for a traditional ceramic coffee mug. Does your promotion target people on the go? Opt for a personalized travel mug, as it will both suit your end user’s lifestyle and allow your message to be seen by everyone they encounter. Our promotional coffee mugs main page has a complete list of the different types and sizes of mugs InkHead has to offer.


  • Bistro: The stylish rounded bistro mug, modeled on the mugs from which one might sip cafe au lait at a sidewalk table in Milan or the Cote d’Azur, is a popular alternative style and nice for displaying logos with rounded edges or flowing script.
  • Cafe: If your logo has a crisp, modern design, choose a mug with sleek lines for a contemporary flair, like one of our tapered cafe coffee mugs.
  • Camper: Shorter in stature but wider in diameter, these rugged mugs hold 14 or 15 ounces and have a flecked finish that brings to mind evenings around the campfire.
  • Classic: The classic coffee mug is uniformly cylindrical in shape, with a handle and comes in a variety of sizes. A basic 11-12 oz mug is an economical choice for those on a budget.
  • Desk: Thanks to their broad base, these mugs are nearly impossible to tip over, making them perfect for the office.
  • Diner & Restaurant: We offer a nice selection of diner and restaurant mugs ready to take your imprint and look smart use after use.
  • Glass: Perfect for iced or (one of our favorites) Irish coffee, glass coffee mugs look great on a desk or conference table and make an elegant corporate gift.
  • Travel Mugs: Anyone with a lengthy morning commute will tell you they couldn’t live without a travel coffee mug!
  • Unique: Want something that stands out from the rest of the pack? Go with one of our custom unique mugs.

Popular Coffee Mug and Tumbler Materials

Ceramic, Porcelain, and Stoneware

Ceramic, porcelain, and stoneware mugs are the most common type of promotional coffee mug. The hard, smooth surface of a custom ceramic mug makes it the perfect canvas for almost any logo, and there are a wide range of styles and sizes to choose from.

  • The “not-a-paper-cup” ceramic tumbler mimics the paper cup offered at most coffee shops, complete with a silicone version of the plastic lid
  • Double-walled ceramic keeps coffee hot and hands comfortable–some versions even come with a reusable sleeve
  • Personalized ceramic travel tumblers are ideal for environmentally-friendly promotions, but are also trendy enough to suit almost any campaign


Stainless Steel

Custom stainless steel coffee tumblers and mugs are extremely popular as promotional items because of their high perceived value. A common material for travel tumblers, stainless steel:

  • Is durable enough to withstand even the harshest of morning commutes
  • Offers styles that are sleek and modern, while others are rugged and feature textural or rubber accents.
  • Is often paired with other materials to create a unique two-tone look–the cool silver tone complements a variety of materials, including ceramic, plastic, and even leather
  • Should be double-walled or lined with a plastic liner to help keep coffee hot, and this is ideal for thermo-insulated mugs and thermoses
  • Tends to be the most expensive option for promotional coffee tumbler materials, but the initial investment can pay off in repeat impressions through frequent use


Acrylic and Plastic

Most people probably don’t think plastic when they think of coffee mugs. But promotional plastic coffee tumblers and acrylic tumblers can be a great choice, especially for travel mugs

  • There are a wide range of color options available to suit any occasion, including effects that couldn’t be achieved in other materials
  • Plastics are durable and can be easily cleaned, so they can withstand frequent use
  • When choosing a plastic or acrylic coffee tumbler or mug to look for a style with a liner, as single-wall styles are intended for cold beverages only
  • There are even acrylic tumblers with stainless steel liners, so you can have the best features of both materials
  • Unlike most other types of promotional coffee tumblers, there are recycled and biodegradable options available



While we hope you’ll opt for reusable promotional coffee mugs whenever possible, we understand that some events and businesses call for disposable (or hopefully recyclable!) cups. We offer a variety of custom paper cups to meet your needs.

  • They’re a necessity for the restaurant industry, and they can provide the perfect finishing touch to a party or corporate event when you personalize them with your message
  • Paper cups don’t have the insulating properties of most reusable coffee mugs, so don’t forget the imprinted paper coffee cup sleeves
  • There are even reusable versions available, like our foam coffee cup sleeve

Where to Use Coffee Mugs

Since coffee mugs are one of the most versatile promotional items you can buy, there are few places where they are not appropriate. Read below to see some of the most popular places people use coffee mugs.

  • Offices: Welcome new employees or reward your veterans with a coffee mug. They’ll appreciate the thoughtful gift.
  • Trade Shows: Give people an incentive for stopping by your booth and hearing your pitch.
  • Schools and Colleges: Coffee mugs are great teacher appreciation gifts.
  • Government Agencies: Durable and versatile, coffee mugs are also very popular with government offices and agencies.
  • Weddings: Looking for a memorable favor for your wedding? Coffee mugs are a great custom wedding favor!
  • Fall and Winter Promotions: When the weather cools down, a well-timed customer gift of a coffee mug can really heat up your business.
  • Restaurants: Stock your shelves with custom vitrified mugs or sell specialty designs in your gift shop!

Who Can Use Coffee Mugs

Because promotional coffee mugs are so ubiquitous, they are among the most in-demand promotional items your money can buy. Let’s take a look at some of the most common buyers of coffee mugs.

  • Companies: Because they’re so versatile, coffee mugs can be used by companies at corporate events, trade shows and conventions, or even in the office kitchen.
  • Brides and Wedding Planners: With their small size and high reuse rates, coffee mugs are can’t-miss wedding favors.
  • Educators: As mentioned, teachers love a good coffee mug.
  • Government Employees: Whether you’re buying for the department or the agency, your fellow public servants will love the mug.
  • Souvenir and Gift Shops: Thanks to their utility and low cost, coffee mugs are must-have items for any souvenir shop!
  • Non-Profit Organizations: Looking for an inexpensive entry-level donation gift? When it comes to nonprofit promotional products, coffee mugs cannot be beat!
  • Hotels: Stock your gift shop with coffee mugs so guests can buy a memento of their time in your city or at your resort.

Things to Consider When Buying Custom Coffee Mugs

At Team InkHead, we’re proud of our selection of coffee cups. Here are some key aspects of buying custom coffee mugs that you should keep in mind as you shop.

  • Intended Use: Because we carry so many different coffee mugs and styles, this is a very important consideration to make. Do you intend for recipients to use the mugs at home, in the car, or at work? The answer to that question will dictate which type of mug you choose.
  • Lids: Several of mugs and travel tumblers feature lids, ranging from the classic sliding top to newer spill-proof 360 degree lids.
  • Gift Boxing: Some of our higher-end coffee mugs and tumblers come gift boxed or have it available as an option. If this is a service you desire, please contact us for assistance in locating a mug that fits your needs.
  • Imprint options: We have several Custom Full Color Mugs available. Depending on your artwork, you may want to opt for a full-wrap imprint. Inquire with our sales team if this is a service may need.
  • Durability: Use the Durability filter on the results page to filter for microwave-safe, dishwasher-safe, and vitrified coffee mugs.
  • Brand: Our selection of coffee mug includes popular retail brands such as Contigo. If you really want to impress your clients or employees, a custom Contigo tumbler is sure to do it.
  • Material: We offer mugs made from ceramic, stainless steel, acrylic, and many other materials. Again, your intended use will play a large part in dictating which material is right for you. Ceramic is highly reusable and easy to clean. Stainless steel offers an upscale look and insulating properties. Plastics and acrylics expand design options. Ceramic and biodegradable or recycled plastic options are ideal for eco-friendly promotions, and imprinted paper coffee cups are ideal for large events where reusable mugs aren’t practical. If you’re undecided, our coffee mug main page lists all our available materials, and a Promotions Specialist can help guide you based on your event, message, and budget.
  • Production Time: Most coffee mugs can be made within 3-5 business days. If you’re in a time crunch, start your search by looking at our free 24 hr production coffee mugs
  • Quantity: Minimum quantities range from as little as 12 pieces to as many as 150 pieces, with most falling between 50 and 75 pieces. Some items may be available at less than minimum quantities with the payment of a less-than-minimum fee. Inquire with a salesperson to find out whether this is available for your item.
  • Capacity: This runs the gamut from 3 oz espresso-sized cups up to 22 oz travel tumblers. Remember, the average cup of coffee is between 6 and 9 oz.
  • Country of Manufacture: Concerned about ordering items made overseas? InkHead has several custom coffee mugs made in the USA to choose from, too.

Ready to order your custom coffee mugs? Have a question about this product? Please contact us. We can take your order over the phone or answer any questions you may have.

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InkHead Promotional Products
We make quality custom promotional products designed by you.
138 Park Ave STE 300
Winder, GA 30680 United States
P: (800) 554-0127 | F: (800) 734-2179
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