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When you’re a business owner dipping your toes into making your own products for the first time, the most logical solution to your labeling needs is printing them yourself. After all, you likely already have a cheap inkjet printer at home — surely, printing your own custom labels is a good money-saving strategy? Be warned, however, that while DIY label printing may offer a smaller upfront cost, you’ll end up spending a pretty penny on future maintenance and material costs. This article will break down what makes DIY label printing so expensive and why outsourcing your label printing is the right move for growing your business.

Why Consider DIY Label Printing in the First Place?

If you’re a small business just starting out, an inexpensive inkjet printer seems like a sound investment compared to outsourcing to a professional label printing company. A regular printer is easy to use, and while you might not be coming out with sleek, high-quality prints, they’re still perfectly acceptable labels to use when you’re just starting. 

You have a lot of freedom to experiment. While you’re seated in front of your printer, it’s easy to make minor tweaks to your designs and test them out on paper. The turnaround time is virtually nonexistent. You can print as many as you need at a time, which is especially ideal if you don’t want to struggle with inventory control.

In addition, if you sell seasonal products, special editions, or small product quantities in general, it can be a more cost-effective approach. You don’t have to stress over meeting a minimum amount for your order. 

However, you’ll eventually find yourself spending too much of your resources, time, and money if you stick to DIY label printing as your business grows.

The Expenses of DIY Label Printing

Nothing in life is free, including printing your labels at home. Even if it seems like you’re saving money because you already have a printer on-hand, you’ll run into these expenses sooner rather than later.

You Incur Overhead Costs for Printing

Do you know why printers are relatively inexpensive? Well, the companies that manufacture them profit from selling you the supplies you need to use your printer. According to this study by Consumer Reports, the cost of printer ink ranges from $13 to $95 per ounce. Not only is that cost high, but most of your printer ink goes into maintenance cycles instead of actually onto the page. When you print at home, you will have to shoulder those costs and other overhead costs (e.g., your utilities).

You Suffer the Headache of Creating the Labels

There are many options for design software and label templates to help you create your own labels. While this certainly makes it easier to design your labels, it still doesn’t make it easy in the conventional sense. Are you aware of the requirements for the type of product you’re marketing? For example, there are food packaging label requirements that you absolutely must comply with. DIY label printing requires a dedication to even the smallest details because the responsibility for getting your labels right is solely on you. 

You Have To Keep Up With Maintenance

If you’ve never had to fuss over your printer throwing a tantrum and absolutely refusing to print, you’re either in denial or you’ve never actually used a printer. The list goes on: an out-of-date driver, a paper jam, an overloaded queue, a faulty connection, clogged print heads, etc. Before you can even get to print off a sheet of labels, it’s up to you to ensure that your printers, ink, etc., are in working order. 

You Spend Additional Time

As they say, time is gold. Every second that passes is one you’re never getting back, so why spend it on activities you don’t have to do? From designing the labels themselves to constantly checking on the status of your printer and ink, you’re using up precious time. When you outsource your label printing, all that is required of you is communicating with the label printing company to ensure that your labels will come out the way you want them to. It takes significantly less time and allows you to use your time on other, more critical tasks.

You Settle for a Less Professional Look

This may be the biggest drawback of printing your labels at home, especially if you’re trying to build your brand reputation. You’ll have a minimal pool of paper options, label shapes and sizes, adhesive material, etc. Over time, your DIY labels won’t hold up well against heat, moisture, or oils. By working with a good label printing company, you’ll have access to higher quality labels created with a wide range of label materials, sophisticated printing processes, and professional advice on the best designs, materials, and finishes for the look and feel you want to achieve.

Start Outsourcing Your Labels Today!

Don’t compromise on quality when it comes to your labels. At Leapin’ Lizard Labels, we take pride in printing only the highest-quality labels, stickers, banners, floor decals, and window clings for your company — without any surprises. Save your resources, time, and money and request a quote online or call us at 970-484-0850 today!

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