One of the competitive advantages I have is that I can do any type of labeling. Whether it’s wine labels, jam labels, cookie bag labels, or boxes, I’ve set up the ability to quickly personalize and customize. In our store, we have three Lexmark printers that I bought on eBay three years ago for 1 cent each (and $5 shipping). They’re lined up, each with its own label size, and when it’s time to print a quick bag label, photo paper, or wine label, we’re ready to go. We have additional color cartridges in stock to alleviate any downtime in production and each printer is on our network and labeled with the type of label material the printer has. It’s that level of detail that helps us create customization in minutes. No delays in shipping your gift basket – it’s printed, applied, placed in the basket and ready to go.

From the product point of view, we can offer photo frames to add personal photos. This is especially popular around Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. Putting a photo of the children in a frame and including it in the basket is very special. I even had the opportunity to have a kid draw a picture and Dad emailed it to me – it was framed and included in a beautiful Mother’s Day spa gift basket. We also have bags of hard candy, cookies, trail mixes that we can put a custom label on. “Julie’s Personal Training Mix” or “Sweet Tarts for a Sweet Kate” are examples of the types of labels we will create for our customers. Does this require a little creativity? Absolutely! But you’re a gift basket designer, you’re already creative, right?

There are a variety of programs you can use to create labels. Microsoft Word has templates and you can choose the size of your label. I usually use PowerPoint or Adobe Photoshop if it’s complicated or I need special fonts and color schemes. Any program you feel comfortable with is what I recommend. You need to be quick with this type of work so you don’t delay the shipping or delivery of your gift basket. From an artwork standpoint, I use to take the little images I need to make the labels extra special. You do have to pay for the photos though, so you might want to consider a free source like Microsoft Office Online.

Lastly, I use for labels. They have all the sizes you can imagine and come in matt white, gloss and available colours. They are flexible with how many sheets you should buy and most of all the price is great. We select 5 different sizes and have them in stock at all times.

One last consideration: be careful with the volume. If you get an order that requires 25 or more of a given label, it may be worth checking with your local printer. I use Hillview Printing for bulk orders and they show up right on time and are perfectly priced. Sometimes the cost of ink for your inkjet will be more than the cost of using a professional printer.

Above all, have fun with the tagging. It absolutely adds value to your gift baskets and will set you apart from your competition.

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