Product labels, stickers and decals: common traps that lead to costly overprinting

When it comes to printing your business or product labels, stickers, info decals, or indeed anything at all, opting to print more to save money can be an alluring option.

While you don’t need some article on the internet to tell you that buying more than you will ever use will make that lower price you planned for less meaningful, bear with us.

We’re printing experts and we know there are factors that people often don’t consider that will leave you with bundles of print going to landfill.

Overbuying, in a few cases, can be a simple consequence of optimism towards how much a product, service or resource will be embraced. Whilst the passion for your product or business is wonderful, take a beat and consider if any of the following critical areas may cause your print’s shelf life to expire sooner than you expect.

Are there details at risk of change in your product labels, stickers, decals or other print items?

Will your print include any of the below details that may change as you evolve:

  • Ingredients (either because you are refining a product or perhaps supply issues)
  • Best before dates or batch numbers
  • Directions for use information (wording or instruction changes based on market feedback)
  • Regulatory requirements such as country of origin, warnings, content and servings
  • Retail or distributor requirements such as barcode sizes and formats, distribution, import and manufacture contact details

Another consideration is whether your product packaging could be at risk of supply issues. If so, size, material or artwork changes may be required for use on your new packaging.

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Does your branding need to be flexible?

Will your print be impacted by news, events or other market influences?

While graphic and message repetition is a part of good quality branding, there may be benefits for your unique product packaging to have an ease of changeability to create renewed interest.

Another consideration is whether a rebrand, move to a new address or change in contact details might be a possibility. Small shifts to your packaging may be needed to align with broader business decisions.

Whilst you may wish to use up all the prints you’ve invested in, it is more important your prints do your brand justice, consistent and send the right messages.

For this reason, if you know changes will be made in any area, consider opting to print less for now.

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Consider your print’s durability and application

Will your print be exposed to sun, cleaning, water, dirt or oils? Speak to your print provider for advice on product options which will suit your purpose (our friendly, expert team are always happy to provide advice).

A good way to start with prints requiring durability  is to invest in a smaller run to test they work for your needs.

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Leave room for improvement

Are you introducing a new process of quality assurance or workflow? Often, tweaks are needed as faults are discovered and better ideas are unveiled.

If you are printing stickers, labels or signage to support your new standards or processes, you may wish to think shorter term to allow for those systems to be perfected.

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Choose the benefits of custom printing over quantity

Consider printing smaller personalised business or product labels and stickers as opposed to large quantities of labels that may not have the desired impact.

While one size sometimes does fit all, it is certainly not always the case. Instead of sacrificing opportunities to customise something to a task, opt for smaller quantities of multiple variations.

Over 15 years we’ve printed countless solutions for small and large manufacturers, retailers, resellers and businesses Australia-wide. Our advice is to only print what you need within a reasonably moderate timeframe.

This allows you to not only spread out your print expenses into smaller instalments but also save money by using all of your printed goods, instead of sending them to waste.

The environment will thank you.

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When printing smaller quantities or custom printing options, opt for a digital print process and avoid the large setup costs that come with some longer run printers.


Make sure you choose a printer who can offer flexible size, quantity and material options to ensure you only pay for what you need. For example, we offer quantities of between just 1 through to 100,000, giving you more choice and flexibility for your needs and budget.

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Want to talk?

Our printing experts would love to discuss your printing needs to find the perfect solution.