Label Tip #6 What to expect when doing business with Columbine Label

How much will my labels cost and how quick can I get them?

What to expect when doing business with Columbine Label, and how you can help expedite the process!

In a custom manufacturing business like Columbine Label, part of what makes it custom is the number of variables involved in each transaction. Because of that, we can’t just “ballpark” a price. Following is a discussion of what we need to provide you with an accurate picture of what it takes to make your label, and thus give you an accurate estimate of what they will cost.

  • Due Date! When do you need ‘em! We still haven’t mastered delivering labels yesterday, however we try to work with our customers as much as we can to make their delivery dates. A surprising degree of this depends on you, the customer. More about that later.
  • Quantity. How many labels do you want or need? Do you expect to order the same labels again? If so how soon? Our understanding of what you hope to or expect to accomplish will help us to make a better recommendation.
  • Size of the label. Not the container size. Similar volume containers come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. Don’t know? If you have a container, we can help you with this.
  • Any degree of sizing flexibility? We have thousands of die shapes and sizes and may have one close enough to work if not the exact size. We can adjust the art.
  • Artwork and proof approval. This is almost always the point that lead times get extended. We can’t print a label if you can’t decide what it will look like, or what it needs to say. We won’t provide a promised delivery date without a signed proof – we know from experience this is where the wheels will come off! Our normal delivery is two weeks from proof approval. If delivery is critical, it is at this point that the customer can have the biggest impact on making that date. Let us know what you need and help keep the process moving – we can probably make it happen.
  • Is Artwork ready to go? We’ll need a couple of days to generate a proof if art is ready.
  • What format is the art in? Our website details acceptable formats. Typically Microsoft type formats are not usable.
  • We can provide a quote without art, but it will be subjective to our review of the art; i.e. if we quote 3 colors and the art comes in as 2 or 4 colors, it will change the pricing.
  • How many colors are in your label? If you can send us the art we can determine number of colors.
  • How many copies or “flavors” do you need? For example: Joe’s Jellies. Grape, Strawberry, Peach, Large and Small of each. This would represent six copies. However it may not require all plates to change. This is a good example of allowing us to see the art at the time of quote. We can then correctly account for everything necessary, minimizing future “corrections” and/ or misinformation.
  • We normally don’t charge for doing customer art. Most work here can be done in a minimal time. If it becomes extraneous, we will advise you of any necessary charges.
  • We allow three proofs issued before incurring charges. See the above point. We’re happy to make changes and corrections – within reason.
  • Changes after approval. If you need or want to make changes after signing the proof, it may incur a charge and most certainly will extend the delivery date. Again delivery date is from proof approval. Changes after approval starts the clock over again.
  • How are the labels to be applied. Hand or automatically applied. If labels are to be hand applied, this could provide some flexibility with regard to die choice.
  • Do you know the “unwind style”? See the chart on our website art page.
  • Are you working with a third party to label your containers? If so, is there a labeling date established? Who and where? Unwind style determined? We’re happy to coordinate with your applicator to make sure everything matches up.
  • Paperwork – New customer paperwork required. We try to keep this to a minimum. There are a couple of items we need however. These must be completed or we will be required to charge you tax on the order.
  • In general, charges to be aware of: Label cost per 1000. Plate and die charges if applicable. Shipping charges and any applicable taxes.
    +/- 10%. Industry standards are to produce quantities of plus or minus 10%. If you require exact quantities, we must know this at the time of the order.
  • Payment terms are: Cash, check or credit card (MasterCard or Visa) First time customers are payment in advance. We do offer terms upon approved credit.

That about covers it. One thing we try to do at Columbine Label is manage expectations. Try as we might, “nobody sells everybody”. But if you know what to expect that’s half the battle. Most of the time we find a way to accommodate our customers needs. If you’re in a position to help us get you what you need, everybody wins. Getting labels shouldn’t be difficult, but it shouldn’t be an overlooked aspect of getting your product to market either. Labels get your products noticed and Purchased!