How to buy cheap labels - Tip#2: Volume


Everybody knows that volume plays an important role in determining your label pricing. But what can you do if you're project only requires 20,000 labels? Here are three ways you can game the system to get better pricing on your next small run.

  1. Bundle your orders. 20,000 labels is not a big deal to a converter. Sure they'd be happy to take your order, but in all honesty you're taking up valuable press time for larger, more profitable orders they're fulfilling. If you can bundle all of your printer, printhead, ribbon and label opportunities through you're preferred converter they'll see more value in the overall relationship, which gives you more negotiating power.
  2. Shop around. We can't say enough about your need to shop around. Our upcoming post (Tip#3) will dive into this topic in more detail, but for now it's important for you to get multiple quotes. Each converter has a specialty and their raw material pricing is dictated by how much of each material they're buying. They may have fantastic pricing on a standard 2.3 Mil Poly but their 2.6 Mil Poly pricing is terrible, because their customers aren't buying it. As a result, they have high minimum order quantities and guess who pays for that? Hint: it's not them. Don't assume all converters get the same raw material pricing. And just because a label company is located down the street doesn't mean you're going to get a good deal. 
  3. Maximize your order. Get pricing for at least double the label quantity you need. This provides valuable insight into your converter's volume pricing structure. If you only ask for pricing on 20,000 labels you'll never know if a huge price break is just around the corner at 25,000 labels. If you could save 10% by buying and stocking 5,000 more labels, wouldn't you? However, if you're planning to purchase and stock labels be sure to ask your converter about proper storage and handling conditions. Some labels and adhesives degrade quicker than others and there is certainly a maximum shelf life for all labels. Try to find a good balance between volume, pricing and order frequency.

Put these tips into practice on your next order and you'll be rewarded. If you have success let us know; we'd love to hear about it.