Technology, Informed Buyers Drive Label Design Ideas
Precedents for what’s coming in the world of label design have been set by transformation from a chiefly print to technologically advanced digital world. Keywords-—other than being buzzwordy and trendy—-weren’t foremost in the lexicon of content development in a print world. However, with the advent of digital, keywords became instrumental to SEO—-and therefore to how content was written. Labeling for online sales suddenly became essential.
Labeling for Informed Consumers and Online Sales
Traditionally, labels have followed many of the same rules that applied in a print-dominated world: stand out, compel, and shock with strong graphics and copy. Now however, labels are more than that—-they also are conduits to additional information and messaging. For example, QR codes on labels increasingly re-direct readers to more expansive information on a website or other digital platform. There’s also the “wow” factor of how you present a product with a bunch of whizbang techno-tricks that go way beyond traditional design and function. One relatively recent example is beer packaging that tells you when the product needs chilling. So, all this technological wizardry raises the question of how important stellar graphics and content on a label are to product success, given the opportunity to bowl people over with the latest, tricked-out technology and/or other sites where they can go to get more information. Given the myriad options that technology offers, where do you draw your label lines in the New Year? Following are some guidelines for custom product labels to help think through the best strategy for you:
- Tie your label to product “persona.”
Products carry their own personality. Is yours straightforward and simple, trendy and trendsetting, or somewhere in the middle? Once you’ve listed out basics of your product persona, match them up to label characteristics.
Here’s an obvious (hopefully) example of what not to do: Your product is simple, organic and green, and not genetically modified. You’d likely avoid a fancy, bells-and-whistles technology label that screams high-tech and contains elements that generally don’t pair well with all-natural (such as a thermostat that tells you if your beer is cold enough).
Conversely, a high-torque energy drink typically will appeal to high-energy, high-tech buyers influenced by technology, bold graphics, and possibly shocking copy.
- Labeling for online sales vs. traditional retail.
Where will the lion’s share of product buyers see you? Will it be on a retailer’s shelf, or online? Or, will commerce come substantially from both? Then, decide on and design labels accordingly. In cases where both are weighty, think about separate labels with distinct messaging. Or, determine if a one-size-fits-all label truly will appeal in both environments, or just succeed in saving money initially (but costing you sales later). Labeling for online sales may have different requirements than labeling for traditional retail sales
Look at the product in its immediate surroundings as well as brick-and-mortar/virtual considerations. For example, if you are marketing wine, check out primary sales channels. Are you typically on a liquor store shelf with tons of clever, graphically-sophisticated competitors? If so, determine what will make you stand out among those other choices. Here’s a possibility: a tiny label that promotes itself as a path to transparency, literally--see more of what’s inside the bottle.
- Increase sales by labeling for informed consumers.
Consumers are becoming much more informed and demanding of information, particularly in areas where health and well-being are in focus. This trend likely will only intensify in the coming year, so when labeling for informed consumers, think carefully about what and how much education your buyers want. Then, make your label provide adequate education and/or refer people to more detailed information consistent with this analysis.
Conversely, if your product is all about flash and pizzazz, it may be that the less said, the better. In these cases, high-tech label special effects, graphics, et al may produce many more sales than in-depth information.
Think About The Future Of Label Design
The New Year brings into focus new ways of considering your label’s role, look and feel. For label design ideas when labeling for online sales and informed consumers, Lightning Labels has the tools and expertise to guide you every step of the way. When you decide to make changes and/or add to your existing label line, we’ll help you get ‘er done.