Special Die Cut Shapes can Help Your Products Stand Out

Has this happened to you? You’re shopping for something specific when a product catches your eye. You’re not sure what it is but the bottle you’re holding in your hand is intriguing. It’s not the color or design. It’s probably the unique shape that subconsciously stood out.

You’ve arrived at lesson 4 of 8 editions of the Stand Out Series: How To Make Your Labels Stand Out On The Shelf.

Throughout the series we’ve shown you ways to make your label packaging unique so you  command the attention of buyers.. In this edition, we’ll show you the benefits of  special die cut labels, including how these types of labels can make your product stand out on the shelves.

What are special die cut labels anyway?

“Die cutting” refers to the process of cutting labels into a specific shape. most labels, this shape falls under one of the four standard label shapes, which include:

  • Circle
  • Square
  • Rectangle
  • Oval

These shapes work fine some of the time. However, if you want to differentiate your products on the shelves, ditching the four standard shapes for something more unique will make your products pop.

Special die cut labels are created by etching a uniquely shaped blade into  a solid steel, rotary cylinder. Sometimes, to make it more cost-effective, the blade etches on a flexible metal plate that wraps around a magnetic cylinder.

Here are examples of when a special die cut label may be your ideal choice:  

  • Visual attraction/differentiation – Using a unique shape will instantly make your product visually more appealing to your customers. You’ll immediately stand out from most other packages that stick to the traditional standard shaped labels.
  • Fit container shape – If you’re working with an oddly shaped container, the standard label won’t work. Take a mustard bottle with a trapezoid shape or indented waist as an example. No square or circle would fit this bottle properly. By using a special die cut label instead, the product looks professional and complete.
  • Neater – Since special die cut labels are custom made for the occasion, they look neater and cleaner. It completes the look of your product and affects the appeal of your brand.
  • Image emphasis – Special die cut labels may also be created to emphasize the image or words printed on the label. These are especially effective on products celebrating an anniversary or limited edition releases.
  • Stickers – Special dies are also used to create stickers. These are often in the shape of the image (i.e. a butterfly shape or an apple)
  • Reveal Labels – Want to give your customers a sneak peek of what’s inside? Use reveal labels to show off the contents of the product. This is a great die cut for products sold based on color, such as nail polish or makeup.  
  • Functionality:  You can get really intricate with the die cutting to create a label that is both beautiful and functional. If you have ever opened a package of sanitizer wipes or a bag of cookies with a resealable tab on it, then you know what I mean.  Chances are, these were sealed with a special multi-layer, label material with a layer that adheres to the packaging and one that easily opens and reseals.  Because of the special die cutting (from both the top side and the bottom of the label), the multiple layers were able to form an enclosure that could be resealed each time you grabbed that wipe or cookie!  

Considerations  for special/custom die cut labels

Special or custom die cut labels are excellent ways to stand apart from a crowd. However, like any specialty product, there are certain considerations to keep in mind.

They can be more expensive – Special die cut labels may be more costly because of the custom materials and tools required to make them.  This expense is particularly noticeable for small label orders where the die alone may cost more than the actual label printing itself! For these small custom sized labels, the use of flexible tools that wrap around a stock magnetic cylinder may be the solution as they are typically a third of the cost of a solid steel tool which is most optimal for long run orders in the millions of labels.  

They can be more captivating than a standard shape:  This is the biggest reason why you  would choose to invest the extra expense on a specialty shaped label.  It’s about standing out of the crowd.  The tool is a one-time expense, but your labels will be used repeatedly. This could make the extra costs worth it.  

Question:  What is the most unique shaped label you’ve seen?  What about it captured your attention? Please post your thoughts in our comments section of our blog.    You can also sign up for the TLL Print Packaging Tips, to get the rest of our Stand Out Series and other tips and tricks straight to your inbox.

Are you looking for the right option for uniquely shaped labels that will stand out and catch your potential customer’s attention? With decades of experience working with the top product  manufacturers, our team at The Label Link can provide you with a no cost, no strings attached consultation. Together, we’ll help you get the quality labels you need to make your potential customers choose your product over the rest.  

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