Direct embroidery makes the patch completely embedded in the material, making it "part" of your item, and once you apply the patch using direct embroidery, you can't simply take it off and apply it somewhere else. Basically, if you choose to embroider directly, you will not be able to reuse your patch. If you want to use the patch for any other purpose, it is almost impossible, as it is already sewn on and will cause significant damage to the garment if removed. And the direct embroidery comes down to a ball of thread. If you need to use it elsewhere, you can only repeat the previous embroidery.
In the long run, embroidered patches are much cheaper and the most cost-effective option compared to direct embroidery. You will be able to reuse your embroidery patches elsewhere, whereas direct embroidery does not allow you to do so. Therefore, if you are interested in patches that save money and have different types of functionality, then embroidery patches are your best choice.
When people decide to use direct embroidery, it causes the patch to become completely embedded in the material, making it "part" of your clothing. If you decide to embed a patch using direct embroidery, you won't be able to reuse it and reapply it elsewhere. The embroidery patch is placed on a separate piece of fabric and can be ironed or sewn so you can remove it easily, or if you wish, but the patch in another place.