See How Easy it is to ‘Place & Pay’ for Your Online Order at 10% Off Regular Prices, Now Through Friday

Online payment now accepted - Lightning Labels

Lightning Labels now accepts online payments using most major credit cards.

Lightning Labels now accepts online payment, making it more convenient than ever to order custom labels. This means that when you place an order at LightningLabels.com, you can pay for it right then and there using a *credit card.

To really understand the benefits of this new feature, you should try it yourself. If you ‘place & pay’ for your online order now through Friday, August 17, 2012, you will receive a 10% **discount. You’ll also receive free ground shipping to US and Canada, and our Lightning Fast turnaround time of two to three days. To claim your discount, use coupon code LLWEB10.

You may recall that we kicked off the New Year right by freshening up the look and feel of  LightningLabels.com. We received rave reviews from our customers, and many compliments from other website visitors. We think you’ll like the upgraded functionality of our website as well, and would love to get your feedback.

To share your thoughts on our new online payment ordering feature, please leave your comments below; or send me an email.

 

*Most major credit cards accepted. See Lightning Labels website for details when placing an order. **Discount does not apply to reorders. Maximum discount is $1,000. Applies to regularly priced orders only. The offer cannot be combined with any other offers or promotions.

Product Label Photo Contest Huge Success

The response to our 2012 Photo Contest was outstanding. Our customers submitted hundreds of photographs of their best product labels. This was one tough competition, to say the least. And the winners are …

1st Place – $1,000 Winner
David Lawrence of Joshua Tree Products

2nd Place – $500 Winner
Mari Dart of Suuthe by Mari

3rd Place – $250 Winner
Lars Ringsrud of Snowdrift Cider Co.

Joshua Tree Product’s first place photo is pictured above. To view all three winning product label photos, please visit our website.

Many thanks to everyone who participated in the contest, including our judges. Continue reading “Product Label Photo Contest Huge Success” »

Tips for Streamlining Nutraceutical Label Prep & Printing

Screenshot of Nutraceuticals World web article on digital label printing

Lightning Labels authors give Nutraceuticals World readers tips on getting the most from digital label printing in their online exclusive feature article.

Digital label printing is attractive to many neutraceutical companies because of its affordability, versatility, and quick turn times. This technology offers so many options, in fact, that preparing a new label order can be overwhelming without the proper guidance.

Fortunately, there are some great resources available to make ordering your custom-printed digital labels a smooth experience. If you are in the market for ordering nutraceutical labels, I highly recommending reading Tips to Maximize Your Digital Label Printing Experience. In this exclusive online feature article for Nutraceuticals World, Lightning Labels General Manager James Lowry and Marketing and Communications Professional Mark Lusky help readers simplify the decision-making process for ordering digitally printed product labels.

Here are just a few of the tips James and Mark give in their article that will help you maximize your return on digital labels with minimal stress:

When choosing label stock, think about the message you want your label stock to convey regarding the core values and culture of the company. If you want to make a dramatic “entrance,” select a stock that will make graphics and colors pop. High-end products targeting niche audiences generally need a label stock that promotes a crisp, clear look while also being extremely resistant to the elements. As the nutraceuticals market grows, so is a trend toward emulating big pharma with buttoned-down businesslike label stocks and printing. Continue reading “Tips for Streamlining Nutraceutical Label Prep & Printing” »

No Barcode Left Behind

If companies are making products that they want to be sold at retail — regardless of whether it’s at a grocery store or electronics outlet — it’s crucial that they have barcodes printed on their labels.

In most western countries, the required barcode is the Universal Product Code (UPC), which is a scannable strip of black bars and white spaces. The UPC system was first developed in 1932 and was popularized by several grocery associations in the 1970s. It is still an easy way for retailers to ring up merchandise and for product makers to authenticate their products.

To get a UPC, companies need to become a member of the Uniform Code Council’s GS1 U.S. Partner Connections initiative. The amount businesses have to pay varies depending on the number of products sold and their gross revenue.

When designing product labels, it’s important to remember to include space for the UPC. While this design step is mandatory for any product label that will end up on retail shelves, it’s also one that can be easily forgotten.

The Proof is in the Label

You’ve designed your product label and have chosen a professional printer — such as Lightning Labels — to do the job. But before you go ahead and give the final word, you should always ask to see a proof before printing an entire batch of labels, as it could help you save money by preventing crucial oversights in the long run.

A proof, quite simply, is an image of the label as it will look when printed. Most label companies will offer one of two different types of proofs — PDF and press. PDF proofs are digital versions of the label that can easily be sent between printer and client, or to key takeholders. These proofs are accurate for the most part. The colors, however, will likely be slightly different depending on factors the client uses to view the PDF proof (e.g., computer monitors, printers, and inks.)

Extra cautious business owners will want to look into press proofs, which are samples of labels actually printed on the press. Press proofs are a physical sample of your final product. You can even test them on your product container for fit, adhesion, and durability!

We are proud to be one of the few label printers that offers our customers their first set of press proofs free of charge. All they pay for is shipping costs. For more information on PDF and press proofs, visit our Label Learning Center; or send us an email.

Sizing Up Your Label Projects

Not all labels come in the same size. Sure, within an industry, many manufacturers may use labels of approximately the same type, but that doesn’t mean a company can’t take a gamble and use a different size or shape.

So what are the best dimensions to make a label? That depends on a variety of factors. Certainly, an extra large or oddly shaped label can be printed and may even help generate some extra attention from shoppers. But at the same time, it could also raise the cost of the printing process — a drawback many small businesses should consider ahead of time.

At Lightning Labels, for example, a 5-inch circle label can easily be printed by fitting two across and three down on the frame. Five hundred 5-inch circles can be created for approximately $360, depending on what label material is used. However, a 6-inch circle doesn’t fit as well on the frame and as a result, the same batch will cost nearly double.

It’s important to look at your project and ask yourself what the goal is. If you are simply trying to print the most cost-efficient label, going with standard measurements may be a better bet. On the flip side, while bigger labels may cost more, they could also help your brand stand out.

If you are having a tough time choosing between sizes, why not get a few quotes for your custom label orders now?

Don’t Miss Our 10 Year Anniversary Sale!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tccGzWVl4Gg&feature=plcp

To celebrate our 10 Year Anniversary, we’re throwing a sale! What’s on sale, you ask? Everything we custom print here at Lightning Labels, including:

Bath and body labels
Food labels
Nutraceutical labels
Wine labels
Lip balm labels
Specialty product labels
Removable window decals
Promotional stickers

All new, regularly priced orders are 15% off during our Anniversary Sale with this coupon code: 15FOR10. Use it when you place your order.

While we are celebrating our anniversary all year long, this sale ends next Saturday. Your valuable coupon code will expire at 11:59p EST on June 3oth, to be more specific. Procrastinators and dilly-dalliers, you have been warned. Order your labels now … before you forget!

To get more details about our Anniversary Sale, I encourage you to watch the video above. Can’t view it? Visit Lightning Labels on YouTube. To use your coupon code, order your custom labels online now.

Q&A with Gourmet Food Maker Suzanne’s Sweet Savories

This month’s Customer Spotlight is on Suzanne’s Sweet Savories, a specialty food company that makes all-natural, gourmet dips.  Lightning Labels conducted the following interview with Suzanne Calhoun, the company’s founding owner, product maker, chief dishwasher, and CEO.

Suzanne Calhoun, Owner/Founder of Suzanne's Sweet Savories, is pictured here.

Suzanne Calhoun, Owner/Founder of Suzanne's Sweet Savories

LIGHTNING LABELS: What products and services does your company offer?

Suzanne: We make gourmet savory dips: a fruit base with a bit of spice and a bunch of zing to jazz up lunch and dinner dishes, from grilled meats and fish to artisan cheese and crackers, from stews to sweet potato fries, omelets to crostini. Our current flavors are Apple, Blueberry, Tomato, and Rhubarb. The apple, for instance, is great with pork chops or ribs, the tomato with roasted potatoes, and the blueberry makes a great baked brie or is fantastic with Mexican food. We will be introducing new flavors as we go along, perhaps into the vegetable realm as well as expanding into new products of similar flavoring: spreads for sandwiches and dressings for salads or pastas.

The marketplace for gourmet foods is quite competitive these days. What makes your products or product labels stand out? What is unique about them that keeps customers coming back for more?

My products are unlike anything else on the market, in that they are mostly just a fruit or veggie, but are savory, adding a burst of flavor to many different dishes. My dips are quite versatile; the possibilities for uses are endless, and you can personalize the taste combinations to fit exactly what you like. I always love to hear what dishes and new combinations my customers have created. People who don’t consider themselves cooks also love them because my products turn the ordinary into gourmet! Continue reading “Q&A with Gourmet Food Maker Suzanne’s Sweet Savories” »

An Introduction to the Full-Color Printing Process

Did you know that what is commonly known as full-color printing is actually based on just four colors?

Full-color printing, also known as four-color printing, is the opposite of monochrome or black and white printing. It uses a handful of basic colors to recreate any image in a faithful — but cost-effective — way. The four colors are frequently referred to as CMYK, or cyan, magenta, yellow and black. Almost any color can be replicated by these four hues, enabling printers to create a digital image.

Pictures are made using a combination of colored dots. If you could view a close-up of any printed photograph, whether it’s on a label or in a magazine, you would see it’s essentially made up of a bunch of cyan, magenta and yellow dots. Sometimes these colors overlap, creating colors that seem different. For example, cyan and yellow can make a greenish color.

If you would like us to create high-quality, full-color labels for your products, just let us know. We are here to help.

The Importance of Understanding the Full Bleed Concept

When you leave machines to do a job, the result isn’t always going to be perfect — small discrepancies are bound to occur.

This is the case with label printing, just as it is with many other tasks. During the label printing process, it’s quite possible they could shift while being cut. For labels with very precise designs, such a shift could produce an unsightly white edge on some parts.

To avoid this, many printers make use of a concept call “full bleed,” which involves making the desired picture ever so slightly bigger than the actual label. For example, if the label is supposed to be 3-inches by 5-inches, the image will be designed for 3.125-inches by 5.125-inches. This will ensure that even if the label shifts while being cut, there will still be a picture from border to border, eliminating the issue of white edges.

Click here to tweet for a free white paper on product labeling!

Full bleed is an important concept to understand — white edges make a product look unprofessional, which could hinder sales at the market. Businesses should use a professional printer, such as Lightning Labels, to ensure all of their labels give products a professional look.