How You Can Save Money When You Buy Custom Labels Online

 

These are not the best of times. With rising unemployment, several trillion dollars of stock market and real estate wealth wiped out recently and with most economic pundits saying we are probably in a recession, 2008 is going to go down as a difficult year for many people.

The burning question for most people and businesses now is, “How can we make our hard earned dollars stretch further?” If you have products to sell you still need to buy custom labels. So in order to help you here we have created this guide to help stretch the money you spend on labels. Below are ten ways you can save money when you buy custom labels online from Lightning Labels.

1. Gang all orders for custom labels with same size

If you can gang all your custom label orders on the same size with the same material, your order is treated as one job. This point, above all else, will save you the most money. For example, you may need labels for a 4oz container and an 8oz container; the obvious thing to do here is to have two different label sizes. But if you can make do with one common label size you will save yourself possibly hundreds of dollars in label printing charges. Of course, in some circumstances it may not be possible, but the fewer label sizes you use the more money you will save.

2. Choose the best sized custom label

The best sized label is the smallest size that you can use that works well with your product. Obviously smaller labels use less material and less ink so smaller is always going to be less expensive. You just have to weigh the small size with the visual impact on your product. Here at Lightning Labels we use 12” wide label material on our HP-Indigo WS4500 label presses, so obviously the smaller the label the more we can fit across the 12” of material. I invite you to play around with our Instant Online Label Quoter and choose various different sizes to find out the best value size you can work with.

3. Buy custom labels using the least expensive material

Our most commonly used material is white BOPP - it is also our least expensive material. This combined with the high gloss laminate will provide you with the least expensive option for your labels without compromising on quality in any way. Your custom labels will look fantastic, be waterproof and oil proof, and be highly resistant to normal wear and tear. Our white BOPP is our most popular material simply because it is such great value.

4. Make sure your label is correct

One surefire way to waste money when you buy custom labels online is to make a mistake and then have to reorder the very same labels. We encourage every customer to check your artwork thoroughly before placing an order so errors can be corrected before they even get to us. As a further backup, we are happy to provide press proofs free of charge to you so you can see exactly what your labels will look like when printed. Always check your proof very carefully for any errors and make sure you are happy with the result before giving us the go ahead.

5. Don't be in a hurry

Here at Lightning Labels we treat every job as a rush job, so there are no additional fees for rush charges. However, you will have to get your labels shipped. The difference in ground rates and overnight rates for UPS is substantial, so you will always save money if you are not in a hurry. You can save up to 90% on shipping by using ground instead of overnight depending on the size of your order. Also, when you receive your custom label proofs be sure to approve them right away so your job can be placed in the production schedule here and ship sooner.

6. Order Slightly More Than You Need

When you buy custom labels online, the more you order the less you pay per label. So, 1,000 labels might cost you 35 cents each, but 1,500 labels might drop the unit price to 25 cents each. In effect with this example you get 500 more labels for just an extra $25 ($375 versus $350). Now, you don’t want to be caught with excess labels you can’t use but more importantly you don’t want to have to order another 500 labels in two months just after ordering 1,000 labels. A new order for 500 labels will probably cost around $300, so by ordering 1,500 labels initially instead of 1,000 labels you have saved $275. So our advice is to always think about the labels you really need and then just order a few extra. You may end up being very glad you did.

7. Plan Your Reorders

In a similar vein, in order to save the most money you want to plan your reorders. We regularly see customers place a reorder for one label one month and then the very next month they place a reorder for a similar label of the same size and material. If these labels had been ordered together it would have saved hundreds of dollars. So if you have 20 versions of a label and you are reordering just one version double check to make sure you won’t need any of the other 19 versions any time soon.

8. Order an Existing Die Size

We have over 800 standard die sizes in stock. We have lots of common sizes and even many unusual sizes and shapes. Obviously we don’t have every size imaginable, but we can usually come close to any requested size. So before you start designing your labels check our available die sizes on the Instant Quote page on our web site. We always keep this list up to date. By choosing an existing size you will save yourself the expense of buying custom labels online with a new die which can run several hundred dollars.

9. Read Art Specs on LL Web Site

We have a page on our web site dedicated to help you or your graphic designer with the design of your custom labels. This is the page you should read before you even begin a new project, particularly the parts around full bleed and layout requirements. Also, if you need to order 20 different labels it is a good idea to design one label first and send it to us for evaluation. We will have our prepress experts take a look at it and then give you the ok or suggest changes, all for no charge. This way you won’t need to go back and change 20 designs, which will obviously cost you more money and time, and you will know how to move forward.

10. Don’t Get Stung by Extra Fees

We will provide one press proof free of charge, but additional proofs are $50. Also, if you send us your art and then decide you need to change it after we have sent a proof we charge a $5 per version art replacement fee to cover the time to recreate your job. These are not charges designed to make us money, they just cover the cost for the time and effort required to redo what has already been done. So it definitely pays once again to have your art correct and print-ready before sending it to us. This way we can keep our prices low for everybody.

Everyone likes to save money and in today’s economic climate it is imperative. With sales slowing down in many industries the focus turns to our costs in order to maintain a profitable bottom line. By following the steps mentioned here you will be able to get the best bang for your buck when buying custom labels online.

The informed customer will often pay less than the customer who just rushes in without thinking. We all hate to see our money wasted, particularly is these difficult times. Spend some time reading this article as well as the many resources on our web site. And then double check your artwork one more time before sending it in. The least expensive mistake is the one that we never see. Become an informed customer and take some extra time with your custom label order and you will save money when buying labels.

(Peter Renton)

Lightning Labels has been servicing the needs of our customers for over 10 years. We are extremely proud of our BBB rating (A+) and guarantee your experience with us will be a positive one.

Lightning Labels delivers unmatched benefits and value including:

  • 48-72 hour turnaround (following digital printing press approval)
  • No set-up fees, no plate fees, and no added fees for unlimited color!
  • Free printed press proofs for all custom label and sticker orders, in addition to PDF files
  • 100% satisfaction guaranteed

Make your products stand out with custom labels, printed stickers and quality packaging from Lightning Labels. Simply visit our get a quote page, to receive an instant online quote now! You can also visit our free samples page and order free label material samples.

Material Descriptions

Materials

BIOSTONE

One of our eco-friendly options that is actually made of stone—no trees are used. This material should not laminated.

CAST GLOSS

This is another material specially designed for the wine industry. It is paper-based with a high-gloss white finish. Same adhesive and liner as Estate #9.

CHROME (SILVER) BOPP

This material has the same water and oil-resistant properties as our White BOPP and Clear BOPP, but has the "mirror-like" look of shiny chrome.

CLASSIC CREST

Best suited for wine labels, this is a white paper stock with a dull matte finish. It is not suitable for lamination and is therefore not waterproof. Same adhesive and liner as Estate #9.

CLEAR BOPP

This is the clear version of the Polypropylene (BOPP) material. It has the same waterproof qualities as the White BOPP. It provides more of a "no label" look and is also suitable for window stickers (where reverse printing of the image allows the label to be applied to the inside of a glass window and be viewed from the outside).

ESTATE #9

This is a great option for wine labels, gourmet foods or applications where a textured finish is desired. Being a paper stock, it's not as water-resistant or durable as BOPP, but its light cream color and textured feel add a touch of the "unusual" to the right product. It features a special adhesive (removable in 100+ degree hot water) and a stronger liner particularly suited to machine application. Not suitable for lamination.

GOLD POLYESTER (METALIZED)

This material will make your labels shine! Suitable for most labeling applications, it has a strong adhesive backing and must be laminated. Choose glossy laminate to make your label designs pop, or matte for a unique, elegant look.

KRAFT (RECYCLED)

This is a recycled 100% post consumer waste material. It is a 55# paper material that is a wonderful option if an “earthy” appearance is desired. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water. It is not suitable for lamination; therefore, it is not water or oil resistant.

REMOVABLE WHITE BOPP

This material is the same as our standard BOPP, but has a special, "less aggressive" adhesive designed to allow the label to be removed or re-positioned after application. Depending on the surface it will be applied to, customer testing is strongly recommended. We can provide samples for this purpose.

SATIN CLOTH

Quite the unique material! Yes, it is woven satin acetate cloth. Think wine or spirit labels! This material will make your product packaging POP. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water.

SQUEEZABLE

A white, 3mil film that is better suited for squeezable applications. This material has proven to work well in a variety of applications, so you can be confident it will perform well for you.

VELLUM (RECYCLED)

A great “green” choice, this 60# vellum is 100% recycled with 100% post consumer waste material. Cannot be laminated. Is neither water nor oil-resistant. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water.

WHITE BOPP

This is our most commonly used material and is suitable for most applications. It's a polypropylene material with a permanent adhesive. It is impervious to water and oils, and is particularly suitable for bath and body products, as well as food containers.

WHITE EARTHFIRST PLA

A more environmentally friendly alternative to White BOPP. The PLA stands for Polylactic Acid (a biopolymer made from corn rather than petrochemicals). Similar look and feel to BOPP and suitable for most applications, but should not be used directly on candle containers.

WHITE FLEXIBLE VINYL

This is our most substantial material. The vinyl is thicker than BOPP, and is most suitable for outdoor applications where greater strength and durability are needed, or where lengthy exposure to the elements is an issue.

WINDOW DECAL (CLEAR/ULTRA-REMOVABLE)

We offer this window decal option as an alternative to static cling. The face stock is clear with excellent clarity. The adhesive is an ultra-removable featuring excellent weatherability and UV resistance. It removes cleanly from a wide variety of substrates without staining or ghosting. Why worry about static clings staying on when you can have removable adhesive there to hold it in place?

CAST GLOSS

This is another material specially designed for the wine industry. It is paper-based with a high-gloss white finish. Same adhesive and liner as Estate #9.

CHROME (SILVER) BOPP

This material has the same water and oil-resistant properties as our White BOPP and Clear BOPP, but has the "mirror-like" look of shiny chrome.

CLASSIC CREST

Best suited for wine labels, this is a white paper stock with a dull matte finish. It is not suitable for lamination and is therefore not waterproof. Same adhesive and liner as Estate #9.

CLEAR BOPP

This is the clear version of the Polypropylene (BOPP) material. It has the same waterproof qualities as the White BOPP. It provides more of a "no label" look and is also suitable for window stickers (where reverse printing of the image allows the label to be applied to the inside of a glass window and be viewed from the outside).

ESTATE #9

This is a great option for wine labels, gourmet foods or applications where a textured finish is desired. Being a paper stock, it's not as water-resistant or durable as BOPP, but its light cream color and textured feel add a touch of the "unusual" to the right product. It features a special adhesive (removable in 100+ degree hot water) and a stronger liner particularly suited to machine application. Not suitable for lamination.

GOLD POLYESTER (METALIZED)

This material will make your labels shine! Suitable for most labeling applications, it has a strong adhesive backing and must be laminated. Choose glossy laminate to make your label designs pop, or matte for a unique, elegant look.

KRAFT (RECYCLED)

This is a recycled 100% post consumer waste material. It is a 55# paper material that is a wonderful option if an “earthy” appearance is desired. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water. It is not suitable for lamination; therefore, it is not water or oil resistant.

REMOVABLE WHITE BOPP

This material is the same as our standard BOPP, but has a special, "less aggressive" adhesive designed to allow the label to be removed or re-positioned after application. Depending on the surface it will be applied to, customer testing is strongly recommended. We can provide samples for this purpose.

SATIN CLOTH

Quite the unique material! Yes, it is woven satin acetate cloth. Think wine or spirit labels! This material will make your product packaging POP. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water.

SQUEEZABLE

A white, 3mil film that is better suited for squeezable applications. This material has proven to work well in a variety of applications, so you can be confident it will perform well for you.

VELLUM (RECYCLED)

A great “green” choice, this 60# vellum is 100% recycled with 100% post consumer waste material. Cannot be laminated. Is neither water nor oil-resistant. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water.

WHITE BOPP

This is our most commonly used material and is suitable for most applications. It's a polypropylene material with a permanent adhesive. It is impervious to water and oils, and is particularly suitable for bath and body products, as well as food containers.

WHITE EARTHFIRST PLA

A more environmentally friendly alternative to White BOPP. The PLA stands for Polylactic Acid (a biopolymer made from corn rather than petrochemicals). Similar look and feel to BOPP and suitable for most applications, but should not be used directly on candle containers.

WHITE FLEXIBLE VINYL

This is our most substantial material. The vinyl is thicker than BOPP, and is most suitable for outdoor applications where greater strength and durability are needed, or where lengthy exposure to the elements is an issue.

WINDOW DECAL (CLEAR/ULTRA-REMOVABLE)

We offer this window decal option as an alternative to static cling. The face stock is clear with excellent clarity. The adhesive is an ultra-removable featuring excellent weatherability and UV resistance. It removes cleanly from a wide variety of substrates without staining or ghosting. Why worry about static clings staying on when you can have removable adhesive there to hold it in place?

Artwork Specifications

Laminates

High Gloss

High gloss is our most popular laminate. It is the least expensive option and provides protection for the label and a high gloss shiny finish.

Matte

The Matte Laminate provides your label with a dull, non-glossy finish. Some customers consider this achieves a more "natural" look.

Thermal Transfer

This is a gloss laminate that is designed to work with most over-printing thermal transfer printers. We do recommend you get samples first to test through your own printer before placing an order with this laminate.

UV Outdoor Gloss

As the name implies this is best used for labels that will be used outdoors. It has a high gloss finish with excellent UV resistance. It is best paired with our vinyl material for the most durable outdoor label.