Your question:  We’re new to this game. Would we be better off direct-printing on our bottles, cans, and flex packs — or running labels to stick on blank packaging? We want our brand to look upscale and to impress our customers.


Jet Label Answers: It’s right in our name: we almost always recommend labels — they’re flexible, give you a wide range of options, and are especially affordable for start-ups. Both labels and printed packaging can be done in high volume, but labels can be done in short runs too, so they’re great if you have lots of SKUs.

If you order a big run of pre-printed packages, chances are you’re going to want to use up your entire run before making a change. If a situation arises where you need to make a simple change in design or text, you’ll have to toss any unused packages you’ve already printed, which is wasteful and can be very expensive. On the other hand, labels offer you the option to switch up your look and messaging easily and inexpensively, because you can order smaller quantities without breaking the bank. You can update the label as often as you want, to adjust for promotions, trends, and product changes, without having to buy all new packaging. Labels enable you to use the same packaging for multiple products, because all you have to do is swap the label out.

Here’s another thing to consider. If you like the look of a printed or screened product, labels can be printed onto very thin, clear material which blends in well with the packaging, making the label edges almost invisible on a bottle. Or, consider using printed shrink, which has the same benefits as labels and can cover the whole package with your design.

When it comes to established brands, labels can also provide valuable “test balloons.” This becomes important when introducing variants on existing, known products, or when market-testing new packaging before you are 100% committed to wide-scale implementation.

All that being said, if you want a printed package, go for it! Until you get to a higher volume, however, it may be more affordable to go with labels. Want to consult an expert? Fill out our contact form to get in touch with our team: click here.