08 Aug

So You Need a Custom Label: Now What?

By Kevin Crimmins

So You Need a Custom Label, Now What?

Here at the Label Printers, we think about custom labels a lot – not just because labels are our business, but because we’ve seen how the right label can help move products off the shelf. Labels aren’t just decorations; they’re critical sales tools.

Whether you’ve been planning your label for months or have just thought of it now that launch day is approaching, here are some tips to get you started down the road toward an attractive, functional, brand-defining custom label.

The Earlier You Begin Planning, the Better

An experienced label printer will understand that sometimes, last-minute decisions are unavoidable. For example, this craft beer maker told us he needs a responsive label vendor because there’s no time to lose once his company taps one of their barrel-aged concoctions.

But for optimal results, it’s always better to initiate the conversation with your label printer early on. This will give you and your printer ample time to consider and source any special materials or inks your label requires. You’ll also avoid the angst that can come from leaving something really important to the last minute.

Your label printer will also walk you through your options for label format. Your choice of rolls, sheets, or stacks will depend on how you plan to use, distribute, and apply your custom labels.

Visual Design Matters, but It’s Not Everything

Consumers pass judgment on products in seconds, often going on nothing but the visual appeal of the packaging. So, if you’re planning a custom label, it’s worth putting effort into a design that will catch the attention of buyers and communicate the values of your brand.

(For inspiration, check out our roundups of edgy energy drink labels, iconic labels from the past century, and eye-catching wine bottle labels.)

But don’t overlook the other senses, particularly feel. The rough texture of unbleached paper, for example, can indicate a handmade or vintage quality. Embossing and slick, metallic surfaces can add a touch of upscale luxury. A well-stocked label printer will have access to unique materials and inks that fit your brand identity.

Consider Your Label’s Typical Environment

How much trust would you put in a brand with peeling, torn, or discolored labels? We like to believe that most people won’t judge a book by its cover – but they absolutely do. A sloppy label can lead people to question the quality of the product itself.

So, it’s important to choose label materials, inks, and adhesives that can stand up to your product’s typical environment.

For example, extreme changes in temperature can cause certain surfaces to expand or contract. If your product spends time outdoors, you’ll want a label that can stretch and shrink in any direction without tearing. Vinyl is a good choice. (An expert label printer can help you select materials to match your label’s function.)

Moisture can be an issue, too, weakening adhesive bonds and mangling paper. If your product will encounter wet conditions – such as a steamy bathroom – synthetic material such as polypropylene may be the right choice.

Get to Know the Regulations

Labels can help sell products, but they can also keep people safe through the messages they share. In fields such as electronics, pharmaceuticals, and now recreational cannabis sales, strict regulations govern the type of information that must appear on labels and how the information is presented.

It’s crucial to understand the regulations governing your product’s label and to work with your label printer to comply with the rules. Durability is key here, too. If your label falls off or becomes illegible, it won’t be able to perform its regulatory duties.

Mapping Your Custom Label Journey

At the Label Printers, we’re just as comfortable working with custom label veterans as we are first-timers. Whatever level of label expertise you possess, we’ll help you understand and choose the best options for an eye-catching, high-performing label.

But if you are interested in learning more about the label world before your first conversation with us or any other label vendor, take a crash course with our free Custom Label Buying Guide.

Download our FREE Label Buying Guide

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