The advent of scanners, desktop publishing, page layout programs, and advanced printing options make it relatively easy to create professional-looking layouts in digital form. The internet allows scrapbookers to self-publish their work, even if it is just for a readership of one. Scrapbooks that exist completely in digital image form are referred to as "digital scrapbooks," or "computer scrapbooks."
While some people prefer the physicality of the actual artifacts they paste onto the pages of books, the digital scrapbooking hobby has grown in popularity in recent years. Some of the advantages include a greater diversity of materials, less environmental impact, cost savings, the ability to share finished pages more readily on the internet, and the use of image editing software to experiment with manipulating page elements in multiple ways without making permanent adjustments. A traditional scrapbook layout may employ a background paper with a torn edge. While a physical page can only be torn once and never restored, a digital paper can be torn and untorn with ease, allowing the scrapbooker to try out different looks without wasting supplies.
A digital scrapbook layout that demonstrates the use of numerous digital "materials"Furthermore, digital scrapbooking is not limited to digital storage and display. Many digital scrappers print their finished layouts to be stored in scrapbook albums. Others have books professionally printed in hard bound books to be saved as keepsakes.
Professional printing- and binding-services offer free software to create scrapbooks with professional layouts and individual layouting capabilities. Because of the integrated design and order workflow, real hardcover bounded books can be produced cost effectively.
Many digital scrapbook hobbyists employ kits, or collections of matching backgrounds and other coordinating elements. Those who create the kits are considered by scrapbookers as digital artists. Some of the more elaborate kits are available for purchase, while others can be downloaded for free.
Many paper scrapbookers make their first foray into digital scrapbooking by printing out digital elements to use in their layouts.