Label Fails and How To Avoid Them (Warning: Offensive Images!)


We’ve provided printed labels for over 40 years and in doing so we have seen pretty much every “fail” you could imagine – though gladly not due to our efforts! It’s not just short runs of stickers either, it can be huge companies who are responsible for having large volumes of labels or even documents printed that have glaring errors – and you have to wonder: how it was ever approved in the first place?

Branding fail.

Every now and then a label fail will go viral and social media will be alight with hilarious images to celebrate the monumental mistake. At Sticky Labels, we are sometimes a little suspicious that the mistakes are not in fact, very clever marketing to get free publicity for a make or brand. But if not, there are a few little rules to stick to that will help save the embarrassment of going viral for the wrong reason or simply getting the wrong message across. It could also save you a costly mistake

*Please note, there may be some offensive images which we are not responsible for creating!



Check, Check, Then Check Again


We cannot stress the importance of ensuring you have the correct information on your labels and stickers. This is a basic sense can be the spelling or grammar on the labels, a simple misspelling could mean you need to reprint the entire run which can be costly, time consuming and embarrassing.

Simply take the time to check before you order. If you want a second opinion then ask a friend or colleague and even though we do double check for errors at Sticky Labels we can’t be held accountable… Or if you are printing at home then remember that haste = waste.

It may not just be spelling or grammar, it could be a wrong image, a poorly aligned spacing or any combination of issues that mean your labels will go wrong and you will have to start again. So please, always check, check and check again that all information is correct!



Be Clear In Your Message

Instructions unclear…

It’s vital with stickers that you keep your message concise and relevant. You’ll have a limited amount of space on a label and on the place, you’ll be applying it to so you need to keep the message you want to get across to the point and impactful.

Obviously, some labels need to carry a great deal of information in a very small space, for example, e liquid bottle stickers. In these cases, you have to consider you might need to compromise on things like the logo size when you have legal information, warnings or disclaimers which are necessary to display your labels.

Alternatively, it is a common mistake to try and include more information than strictly necessary and lose visual impact of the design. Always consider what really needs to be on the label and if the message can be conveyed more successfully with fewer words so you could have more space for perhaps branding or company logos.



Attention To Detail

We hope your aunt has a sense of humour!

Things like fonts, letter sizes and colours can really affect the overall look of a label. It’s always worth getting a second opinion on not only the grammatical correctness of the label but the overall aesthetics and the minute details.

Your company logo may be perfectly fine until you add text or make minute changes and then it could take on a different form. Consider that subtle changes can completely obscure your message and some fonts will look better than others or even make one word look like… Something else entirely!

Just because it looks ok to you does not mean the minor details are lost on someone else!




Avoid Anything That Could Be Deemed Offensive

Twin Turbos, obviously.

Almost everything these days could be potentially offensive to someone. Within reason, bear in mind that what may seem okay or potentially funny to you might offend someone else.

Not everyone will share your humour so when you are creating promotional material, assess whether it correctly conveys your message without being potentially offensive.

Think about avoiding anything that may have religious, sexual or racial connotations when creating stickers or labels and you should be fine. Although people can be easily offended these days, it’s worth noting there is usually no smoke without fire and you can often avoid these people by checking that promotional material is not going to upset anyone by getting a second opinion or considering other people’s perspectives of your labels.



Apply The Label Correctly

This seems obvious but you can create the labels correctly and be let down by a poorly-considered application! We all know that we tend to make mistakes when we rush and this might be especially true when applying labels to products. The examples of books or magazines are obvious but we’ve all seen these in action and though it may be funny it can really affect whether you make a sale or how clients perceive you.

Taking a minute to ensure the sticker is correctly positioned could save you all kinds of hassle and a few red faces!


Use the Right Kind Of Label

Perhaps it’s not totally non-stick?

Again this may seem obvious but ensuring you have the right label for the job can make a world of difference.

For example, you may want a waterproof vinyl label that will be hard wearing and long lasting but that may not be ideal when you want a sticker that can be easily removed. Likewise, plain paper labels are not ideal when you perhaps want to mark an item for security: If it can be easily peeled off then it defeats the objective that you intended to use it for. Ensuring the right label is used for the job is as important as using a label at all!


Not Sure? Just Ask?

We have a wealth of experiences and an eye for detail at Sticky Labels and we’re happy to share that knowledge if you require assistance.

So don’t sit there designing a label and struggling, just use our live chat, call us or email and we will ensure you don’t make costly mistakes. We’ve seen everything when it comes to labels and promotional material, so get that second opinion and make your labels that look great!




By Gideon Hall

Providing Sticky Labels to businesses and individuals for over 40 years, we've moved with the times and the technology to deliver the the best quality labels in the shortest turnaround times possible.