The fourth quarter is almost here, bringing with it the holidays and year-end purchases. If you work in retail, it's time to start thinking about what needs to be done. One of the most important considerations is buying labels and tags for your store. Labels are a vital part of any business because they help customers find items that might not have been on their radar before. They also play a starring role in the shipping department. If you are looking for advice on how best to buy label supplies this quarter, we've got all the information you need right here.
- Take stock. Which products do you expect to sell? Which items are popular in the holiday season? Review last year's sales to get an idea of quantities sold and the total number of packages shipped. You'll need a lot of labels! Add 10 percent to these numbers to account for a sales bump over last year.
- Don't be afraid of bulk purchases. If your store is selling hundreds or even thousands of an item, it might make sense for you to buy labels by the carton (or even pallet) rather than individual rolls. Not only will you get better pricing when you buy in bulk, but you'll also save the time and hassles of placing more frequent orders.
- If it looks like you need a lot of labels, consider upgrading to a high-speed label printer that can handle the volume you're anticipating. The Afinia L701, for example, prints 1,600 dpi full color labels at 60 feet per minute, and it does so beautifully. Meanwhile, it offers some of the lowest printing costs in the industry. You may also want to consider a label rewinder, unwinder, finishing system, and other accessories to increase your productivity.
- Consider your options. Paper and polypropylene are two of the most popular types of label material available on the market today. Polypropylene is durable, water-resistant, and won't easily tear while paper is great for printing barcodes and shipping information.
- Don't forget ink, toner, or thermal transfer ribbons. Whatever type of label printer -- inkjet, laser, or thermal transfer -- you have, it needs ink cartridges, toner, or a ribbon to produce printed labels. If you run out, production stops, and the last thing you need is a printer that can't produce labels in the middle of the holiday shopping rush.
- Order early. One of the most important factors is time. The earlier you order, the better off you will be because your labels and inks are ready to go when they're needed.
- Pay attention to stock levels. Avoid a crisis by keeping an eye on your stock levels. For example, place a note on the second- or third-to-last box of labels or ink reminding you to reorder. That way, you can be proactive and order and receive more label supplies before you run out.
8. Take care of year-end budgetary surpluses. Toward the end of Q4, look at your budget. If you have a little extra cash remaining, it makes sense to use it now rather than waiting until next year. Stock up on blank labels and get ink or toner for your printer.
Optimedia Labs can help you prepare for Q4. Browse our selection of blank labels, color and thermal label printers, accessories, and label printing supplies now.