Sometimes, the quality of a product’s label will be enough to sell that product.
On a label, the combination of impressive design and useful information is often irresistible to a customer.
In other words, a product’s label can be its own kind of advertising.
It speaks to your business, your product, and the quality of both. Taking the time to choose the right kind of label and putting thought and care into its design, is therefore essential.
If your business is small and you don’t have the budget for a designer, or if you need to save money, you can design and order your own labels.
So, how do you design a label to make sure you get an amazing finished product?
First, figure out the type of label you need. Then, follow our easy design tips to make it look professional.
Types of Labels: What Are Your Options?
Before we answer the question of how to design a label, you need to figure out what type you need.
1. Address Labels
Designing your own address labels for your brand makes sending out company-related correspondence easier. Include your logo on the label so when you stick it on an envelope or package, it’s instantly branded for a professional look.
2. Call-to-Action Labels
Call-to-action labels are simple stickers you can place on a product to call your customer to action. These can be simple or elaborate, but most often will have an action phrase.
For example, call-to-action labels that say “Touch me!” “Smell me!” or “Look closer!” invite your customer to examine your product and experience the benefits firsthand.
3. Product Labels
Product labels are perhaps the most common type of labels with which you’re familiar. These labels are on almost every product you can buy and describe that product, its benefits, or its ingredients, and include branding.
The right product labeling can help demystify a product, clearly communicate its benefits to the customer, and make it look enticing or appealing.
4. Packaging Stickers
For shipping your products, packaging stickers for boxes and envelopes can take the customer experience one step further. Add a sticker with your logo on it to a box, or add one as an envelope seal, and it instantly elevates the entire package.
5. Name Labels
Whether your team is attending an event or you just need name tags for your front-facing employees, customizing name labels is another great way to make a good impression and stay on-brand.
8 Tips for Designing a Professional-Looking Label
Designing labels for product packaging is a big deal. The label will directly affect how your product is perceived and will influence buying decisions. However, as you’ll soon see, it’s not a good idea to get too critical when you’re trying to figure out how to design a label.
Instead, follow these basic tips, have a little fun with it, and you’ll get a handle on the winning formula for professional, snazzy-looking labels.
1. Include the Most Important Information
When designing your label, you have to make sure key information is included without overwhelming the label with text.
With too much text, your label starts to look cluttered and confusing. This is why you should outline exactly what you need to include to help the customer make sense of the product and desire it – no more, no less.
For instance, on the coffee label above, the designer has made sure to include important buying information (the coffee bean origins and the type of roast) but has left plenty of space on the label. This gives the brand name and logo a chance to stand out.
2. Think About the Packaging/Container
The size, shape, and type of packaging/container for your product will definitely determine your label design, too.
For instance, a small spice jar needs a much smaller label. It has to look good and stand out on that tiny surface, yet you can’t put too much information on it or it will be hard to read.
As such, make sure you know the measurements of your container and the type of material you’re working with. Design your label to fit the package and work with the product.
3. Use Your Brand Logo
When designing your label, don’t forget to add your logo or branding. This serves as a visual reminder to the customer every time they use your product. If they love it, they’ll want to buy again, and your label will help them do that.
In the above example from Ucreative, the packaging and product may change, but the brand name remains a consistent design element. It looks the same on every package, but it still complements each one.
4. Make It Clear and Easy to Read
Ideally, your label should be readable even from a distance. In the above example, the brand name is loud and clear, and even the product name is visible. It invites the customer to come closer to read the fine print on the packaging.
This tip is important if you need your product to stand out on store shelves. A label that’s readable from far away will shout at customers and draw them in.
5. Use a Smart Combination of Fonts
Design is all about contrasts. When you get it right, your product label will look not just good, but beautiful.
On the gin bottle in the example, the label combines two main fonts: one that’s all caps, and one that looks like vintage handwriting. Put them together, and the label becomes an ode to the 19th century. Leave one font out, and you completely lose that appeal.
For a similar look, try using two main fonts on your product label. Pick one that’s more elegant and one that’s more modern. Or, pair a cursive font with a bold, all-caps font. Use the difference in fonts to make your label easy to read and understand.
For instance, in the gin label example, the all-caps font is used for the brand name, batch number, and other practical information. The cursive font, meanwhile, is used exclusively to describe the flavors of the wine and the ingredients.
6. Leave Enough White Space
This tip ties into readability, but it’s also an important design factor.
Don’t make the rookie mistake of filling up every last inch of your label with text or design elements. Instead, leave some intentional white space and give your design room to breathe.
According to Notes on Design, this helps separate important information and creates visual interest.
In the above example, the white space is used in a particularly clever way to create the face of a panda.
7. Add at Least One Decorative Element
A label without color or any decorative elements will look pretty blah. To combat this, add at least one decorative element to your label that will jump out at customers.
For example, choose an accent color that matches your branding, or add an illustrative element that speaks to what the product does. For a good example, look at the above example of the bottle of limoncello from Crema de Limoncello – the bright, lemon yellow color is the main accent and speaks to the product ingredients.
8. Be Playful
It’s easy to take the question of how to design a label too seriously. Instead, try to have fun with it. Inject some playfulness or personality into your label and you might just come up with something that sells itself.
How to Design a Label: Use Your Creativity
Above all, the best way to design a label is to use your creativity and have a bit of fun with it.
Sometimes the best designs that speak to your product will happen as you’re playing around with fonts, colors, and decorative elements.
For professional label printing, combine your creativity with our expertise at Banana Print.
We’re cheaper than other label printing companies and pride ourselves on our quick turn-around times.
Come to us with your label design and create just the right look and feel for your brand.