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How To Decide if You Should Go With Blank or Printed Labels

Updated 04/29/2022

With what seems like endless labeling options available to you, getting started with your labeling journey can seem like a daunting task. At, we try to make the process of shopping for labels as seamless as possible, which is why we’ve written this guide — to help you narrow down your options and figure out the right one for your project.

Depending on your project, you may want blank labels that you can print at home, or custom labels on sheets or rolls that are delivered to you ready to apply. In this article, we’ll go over the differences, and other things to consider when deciding between the two.

The Basics

Blank labels are sheets or rolls of unprinted labels in your desired shape or size that you can print yourself using home and office printers like inkjet, laser, or direct thermal and thermal transfer printers.

If you come to the conclusion that printing your own labels is a better fit for you, you’ll need to make sure the label material you go with is compatible with your printer at home. Use the links above to see the materials we offer for each type of printer. Also check out this helpful guide to printing your own labels at home.

Custom Labels is a service we offer where you choose your blank label template, submit your design, and our team prints it for you, so your labels arrive ready to stick.

When determining what route is best for your business, you should consider the requirements of your project or job, your budget, and your time.

Requirements of Your Project

The first and most self-explanatory things to consider when deciding between blank or custom labels are the labels you’re going to need and what you plan to print on them.

While we offer a wide selection of materials and sizes for custom labels, we are able to offer even more for blank labels. Our blank label selection includes materials like pastels, fluorescents, and metallics, and unique shapes and sizes like CD labels, lip balm labels, and soap band labels.

Our custom labels selection includes our most popular materials including white, clear, weatherproof and brown kraft, as well as most of the sizes of our common label shapes. So if your project requires a unique label material or shape, you should take the blank labels route.

For projects that require a lot of labels with the same exact design, Custom Labels is a great option that can save you time and the hassle of printing all those labels yourself, helping your business to run smoothly.

If your project requires a lot of variations between label designs, you may want to have some blank labels on hand to print these on-demand projects. This can include if your business has a line of products with different flavors or scents that need unique labels, or just labels for personalized products and gifts.

Budget and Expenses

The next thing to consider is your budget and expenses.

Blank labels are going to be cheaper than custom labels upfront, but you'll have to print them using your own ink or toner. Depending on how much you print, custom labels can be a more economical choice and reduce waste. If the expense will be the deciding factor on whether you go blank or printed, we recommend calculating your cost per print and comparing that to the cost of purchasing custom labels.

If you’re only printing a small amount of labels right now, you may want to stick with blank labels until you start to scale up.


Consider how much time you spend printing your labels.

If your business is starting to grow and you’re finding most of your time occupied in front of the printer, custom labels could help improve your overall efficiency.

It doesn’t matter what your project is, or how big or small it is, has a labeling option for you.

Ready to order your labels? Start by browsing our selections of blank or custom labels.

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