This year, we have helped more startup businesses than ever before so here are seven easy steps to ordering product labels. The biggest dilemma we have to solve for new businesses is to balance the need for high quality labels against the desire to save packaging costs and their overall cost of production.
My advice is to don’t compromise on quality. I have lost track of the number of times we have had to fix labels for our customers who have sought to save money by selecting a cheap alternative. Remember if something is too good to be true, then it usually is.
Another useful saying is a quote from Steven Coveys’ book, Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. Covey’s second habits is to “Begin with the end in mind”. This can apply to your product labels. Imagine where you want to be in the future and plan to get there one step at a time. Do not try and grow too quickly as you want current sales to fund future expansion.
When starting out, you want to minimise your packaging costs by having a minimum number of sizes and a minimum number of flavours or options. The biggest cost to producing product labels is multiple variations of sizes. At Renton’s Labels, we can alleviate some of the setup costs by digitally die-cutting labels to size. This eliminates the need for a new die.
The second cost is the number of variations of labels in each size. Quite simply, it is easier and hence, less expensive to print 1,000 labels, than it is to print 10 * 100 labels. Aim to keep the variations as low as possible when first starting out. Below is a check list for ordering product labels.
Check List For Ordering Product Labels
- Comply with the law. We are label printing experts, not experts in the law so we are not qualified to give legal advice. I can still send you links to important government sites with regards to food labels, cosmetic labels and importing food. Here they are:
- Choose your container(s). You cannot design your product labels until you have your containers. Will you require plastic containers, glass bottles or some other container. What size and shape will your containers be? How many different sizes will you need? How many labels per container you will you need? Will you need labels at all? For example, breakfast cereal in cardboard boxes has no need for labels. The containers chosen will then influence the size and shape of the labels.
- Get your images ready. You need a brand, probably a logo and ideally images of your products. The most compelling labels stand out through the use of images.
- Choose your words wisely. What makes your product special? Why is it better than your competition? Can you describe the benefits your products bring to your customers in a few words on a label?
- Choose a skilful graphic designer. Do not try and design your own product labels unless you are a qualified graphic designer. The use of fonts, colour, text and images all contribute to a compelling product label. Ideally, choose a graphic designer that has worked in the label printing industry before. You are welcome to hire our graphic designers.
- Choose your stock. You have so many options for label material types. The most important consideration is always to protect the label from spillage, moisture, the weather and anything else that your label could be exposed to. Often, a gloss or matt varnish or laminate covering will add the desired protection. You also have the option for clear labels so that it looks as though your product is not labelled at all. You could also portray an image of high quality with silver or gold foil. Keep in mind that foiling will add to your unit cost of producing your labels. If your product labels are for outdoor use then there are considerable benefits of vinyl labels.
- Choose your quantity. This is not as easy as it sounds. For new businesses there is a risk of buying too many labels. We generally encourage you to err on the high side when it comes to quantity. Even with digital label printing, there is a set-up fee embedded into the price. It means that 200 labels for instance, will only be slightly dearer than 100 labels.