Determining which labels you need for a new labeling application can be confusing. You don’t want to get it wrong and find the label does not meet weather or chemical exposure requirements. Here are some simple questions you can start with to determine the right label.

1. What is the printer make & model these will be printed in, (if any)? (Or roll OD and core size or sheet size)

2. Does your label require a ribbon to print or not? Is your printer capable of using a ribbon? Your label is either Direct Thermal or Thermal Transfer.

3.  What resistance does it require? (Moisture, oil, grease, alcohol, abrasion)

4.  In what environment will it exist?  (Outdoors, outdoors covered, indoors)

5.  What surface will it stick to? (Corrugate, paper, packaging rims, plastic, metal, glass, rough surface, curved surface, moist surface)

6. Does it need to come off at any given point with little or no residue?

7. Is there any pre-printing needed, on front of label, back of labels or on label liner.

8. What size do you need? Width x Length (length measurement increases as the roll is unwound)

Answering these questions will eliminate many headaches, greatly reduce your cost and provide you with the best possible label. There are hundreds of different types of labels that will meet your requirements.

Other factors that determine how your label will print:

  • Ribbon Type
  • Print head DPI
  • Size of Text
  • Amount of Copy on the Label
  • Amount of Detail on the Label

Other specific details you will need to know:

  • Core Size .75″, 1″, 1.5″, 2″, 3
  • Label Width and Length
  • Quantity (Quantity per Roll)
  • Do you need perforations between each label
  • Outer Diameter (will it fit in your printer?)
  • Annual usage (how many labels per day?)

Hint: Bigger is Better  If your printer only holds a 5″ Outer Diameter Roll, consider buying a Roll Holder that accommodates an 8″ Roll. This inexpensive attachment, sits behind the printer and feeds labels in through the open feed slot. Larger O.D. labels are less expensive than smaller ones!

Hint: Cases Quantities  It is always less expensive per roll to purchase case quantities of labels (and thermal ribbon)! Many suppliers also offer buyer loyalty discounts fro annual purchases. Great distributors will even hold onto your labels in their warehouse until you need them. Just make the call.

Best Hint: Call a Great Supplier!  Buying labels is not like buying vitamins online! You can save yourself a lot or work by finding a good supplier and sticking with them. Don;t just go on their website and try it alone, CALL THEM! They can answer every question and you will have the opportunity to get a better price!

The labeling industry is a multi-billion dollar business and regardless of your application, there is a label material out there that will meet your needs.