Pre-Printed Labels VS. On-Demand Printing

To determine which of these options is right for you depends largely on the number of labels you need and the information on these labels. There actually three types of printed labels: Pre-printed , blank labels and shell labels.

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    Pre-Printed Labels

    Labels that have all information printed on them including graphics and are ready to be applied to your product or whatever other labeling need you need.

    • Easy to Use - When using pre-printed labels you do not need special printers, software or labels. The labels come ready to apply.
    • Color and Graphics -these labels are usually very color intensive and graphically enhanced.
    • Information on label - The information on the label is static. You cannot change it. The only way to change the information is by designing a new label with the new information.
    • Cost - Initial cost of pre-printed labels can be very high. There are charges for art work, and die cuts. The cost is very high if you do not need thousands of labels.
    • Waste -Many times, after a label has been in use for a while, the company needs to change the content on the label or the graphics. All previous stock becomes unusable and as such wasted. This waste can quickly add to thousands of dollars.

    Print-On-Demand Labels

    Blank labels that need to be designed first, possibly connected to a database, and printed at the company facilities.

    • Easy to Use - When using print on demand labels you will need special printers, software and label stock. Once the label is "set", it is very easy to print.
    • Color and Graphics -Color is very limited or none existence. Graphics largely depends on the printer quality.
    • Information on label - The information on the label is "live". Changes can be made quickly. If the label is actually designed as a template that draws its information from the database, then any change you make to the data will effect the label, requiring no additional time for design or changes.
    • Cost - Initial cost of print-on-demand labels can be very low. You may be able to use a printer you already have or purchase one that is not very expensive. The cost of standard size blank labels is only pennies a label.
    • Waste -There is no waste! You only print what you need. The same stock can be used for hundreds of product reducing your cost as well.

    "Shell" Labels

    These labels combined the best of both worlds. They are pre-printed with basic information such as company logo and address. They can be used in either a laser a thermal printer.

    • Easy to Use - You have all the benefits of using the print on demand labels, however you will need special printers, software and label stock. Once the label is "set", it is very easy to print.
    • Color and Graphics -You can enjoy the benefit of great graphics and colors (on the pre-printed part)
    • Information on label - The information on the label is "live". Changes can be made quickly. If the label is actually designed as a template that draws its information from the database, then any change you make to the data will effect the label, requiring no additional time for design or changes. The only static information is the pre-printed portion. However, based on the fact that most shell labels only contain the company logo and address, there is a great chance that this information will not need to be changed very often.
    • Cost - Initial cost is higher since you have to invest in printers, and label stock as well as setup fees for the pre-printed portion of the label.
    • Waste -There is no waste! You only print what you need. The same stock can be used for hundreds of product reducing your cost as well providing the pre-printed information was selected carefully and will not need to be changed regularly.