Posts Tagged ‘Website’

FAQ – What Does “Compatible With Avery” Mean?

Monday, January 23rd, 2017

You may have noticed that a number of our label products are described as being “compatible with Avery labels” or “Avery compatible”. Simply put, this means that the label size and layout of our Label Planet labels is the same as the label size and layout of Avery labels.

This means that you can print Label Planet labels with an Avery template; we include compatible Avery codes for our products (where possible) because we know that some of our customers need to use an existing Avery template to print their labels. For example, if you are printing labels from specialist software for producing barcode labels, shipping labels, or product labels, the only templates built in to your software may be Avery templates – if we have a compatible label size, you will be able to buy labels from us and print them using the existing templates in your software.

While you might be perfectly happy using Avery labels, you may have found that we offer a particular label size in a different material or adhesive option that isn’t provided by Avery, that the materials used by Avery aren’t suitable for your application, that you struggle to source Avery labels in the quantities that you need, or you may simply want the freedom to shop around as you please.

If any of these are true, you can buy labels from Label Planet safe in the knowledge that they are the same as the Avery labels that you have used before/are the same as the Avery template that you want or need to use to print your labels. We also offer a free sample request service so you can try out our labels for yourself and see if they are suitable for the task at hand.

You can find a full list of Label Planet labels that have compatible Avery templates on our website here; alternatively, if you have a specific Avery code in mind, you can use our Search By Avery Code page to see if we have a label size that is compatible with your Avery code.

Need Help Choosing The Right Labels? Try These Helpful Extras From Label Planet To Find The Perfect Label For The Job!

Monday, January 16th, 2017

If you’re looking for labels, you might not have realised how many different options are out there, which can make picking the perfect label a bit of a problem. Here at Label Planet, we’ve added a few helpful resources to our website that you can use to make sure that you choose the right label for your specific label application.

The Label Finder
Our label finder is designed to create a shortlist of options for you to choose from based on the information that you enter; all you need to do is select the specifications that you need your labels to match and the finder will automatically create a list of Label Planet labels that meet those requirements.

You can narrow down your options by entering the type of printer you want to use, the shape and/or size of label you want to use, any preferences you have for the material/colour/adhesive/finish, if you need waterproof labels or not, or you can use our “Label Use” category to see a list of products that we recommend for a particular label application.

Search By Pages & Label Lists
Our search by pages help you to find out what products are available from Label Planet, based on a specific requirement that you have – for example, you can search by number of labels per sheet, by label width or height, or by Avery code – to see if we have a label size that is the same as the Avery labels/template that you already use.

Alternatively, you can use our label lists to view all of the label products that we supply that are a certain “type” of label, such as “All Colours”, “All Transparent”, “All Removable” etc.

Range Pages (and Material Specification Sheets)
Each of our products has its own range page, which provides you with more information about each particular range, including key facts (material, adhesive, printer compatibility etc), product information, common and popular uses, and a material specification sheet (which has more detailed information about the materials used to make each range).

Samples
We also operate a free sample request service so you can request a couple of options that you think will be suitable and test them to determine whether or not they really are the right choice. If you really aren’t sure which labels would be suitable, you can simply fill in our online Sample Request form (or give us a call) to let us know what your label application is and the kind of labels you want so that we can send you a selection of the labels that we believe are the best options for you to choose from – all you need to do is provide us with as much information as you can about your application and we’ll work out which labels should be the right ones.

Get In Touch
If all else fails and you’re still confused, remember you can always contact our Customer Service Team to discuss your requirements and get some assistance with choosing the right labels for your label application.

We also have a few extra TOP TIPS to consider when you are choosing labels:
Budget: if you have to keep to a strict budget, our paper labels will ALWAYS be the cheapest options to choose from, labels in a different colour/adhesive/finish will cost a little bit more, and our synthetic materials (polyester, polyethylene, and vinyl) will always be the most expensive options. We operate a price break system so it might be worth buying a slightly larger order than you need immediately (and storing the leftovers for future use) to save you a bit of money in the long run.
Quantity: if you only need a few labels you will need to make sure you look at our STOCKED items; these products have a minimum order quantity of 25 sheets and are listed in the TOP section of our range pages. Our non-stocked items are either made to order items or are kept in stock at our warehouse – these products have a minimum order quantity of 500 sheets, which may be way more than you need.

Visit our website to find all of the helpful extras listed above; you can use our List of All Labels page to see all of the label ranges available from Label Planet (along with a link to the range page for each), or use our Contact Us page to find out how you can get in touch for a bit more help and advice on choosing the right label for your specific label application.

A Happy New Year From Label Planet!

Tuesday, January 3rd, 2017

Happy New Year To All Of Our Customers!

We hope you had a marvellous time over the Christmas break and had a spectacular start to the New Year.

Here at Label Planet, we’re back in the office and are busy processing orders that were placed over the Christmas holidays. If you did place an order over the break then you should shortly be receiving an email confirming that we have processed your order and it is either being manufactured (made to order items) or will be despatched this afternoon.

Orders of stocked items will be despatched this afternoon via Royal Mail’s first class service (25-200 sheets; if you selected the next day delivery option when you ordered, your order will be despatched via Royal Mail’s Special Delivery Guaranteed service) or our next working day carrier service (250+ sheets). New orders, meanwhile, will be processed according to our usual despatch and delivery estimates:

STOCKED ITEMS:
Small Orders (25-200 sheets):
Despatch: same day via Royal Mail’s first class service (up to 4:30pm, Monday to Friday)
This is not a guaranteed next day service; if you need to receive your order quickly, you can upgrade to Royal Mail’s guaranteed next day delivery option online or by phone – this service will mean your order will arrive by 1pm on the next working day and will require a signature upon delivery. We also offer pre-9am and Saturday delivery options but you must request these by phone.

Medium Orders (250-475 sheets):
Despatch: same day via next working day carrier service (up to 3:30pm, Monday to Friday) – a signature upon delivery is required.

Large Orders (500+ sheets):
Despatch: same day via next working day carrier service (up to 3pm, Monday to Friday, subject to stock availability) – a signature upon delivery is required. If an item is temporarily out of stock, it will usually take a couple of working days for your labels to be made and despatched.

Please note: some of our coloured labels have a minimum order quantity of 100 sheets, which means that they are kept in stock at our warehouse and are despatched via next working day carrier service – while we do our best to ensure that these items remain in stock, there may be times when an item goes temporarily out of stock and despatch will be delayed a few days while the items are made.

NON-STOCKED/MADE TO ORDER ITEMS (500+ SHEETS):
Despatch: next working day carrier service (once items have been manufactured)
These items are manufactured on a rotating schedule, which means the lead time is UP TO five working days for despatch (although standard paper products are usually despatched more quickly than this).

Please note: if you are ordering 250+ sheets and need your labels in a hurry, you can call us to request a timed delivery service via carrier (such as a pre-10:30am or a pre-noon delivery slot). Orders of 250+ sheets for Northern Ireland, Republic of Ireland, Islands With UK Postcodes, and UK “Extended Postcode” areas will be sent on a 2-3 working day carrier service.

If you want to order from the Republic of Ireland, you do need to order by phone so that we can quote for and arrange the best possible shipping option for the exact items and quantities that you need to order.

Our office hours are 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday; to qualify for same day despatch, you must order by 3pm (250+ sheets) or 4:30pm (less than 250 sheets) – and please note that we do NOT offer same day delivery.

If you have any questions or queries about ordering labels from Label Planet – whether you’ve already ordered over the winter break or you’d like to place an order now – please get in touch with our Customer Service Team for assistance.

December Design Tips & Tricks To Create Wonderful Winter Labels

Monday, December 12th, 2016

If you’ve decided to ward off the winter blues with a Christmas project and have settled on some DIY label designing and printing, you might have found that things are turning out to be a little bit more complicated than you first thought. There are plenty of things that can trip you up when it comes to designing a label template and making sure it prints out properly, which means a small project to create some Christmas address labels or gift tags can quickly turn into a frosty nightmare!

BUT DON’T PANIC! We’ve got plenty of tips and tricks to help turn your Christmas Crisis into a Winter Wonderland!

Avoiding Template Troubles

  • Make Sure You Have The Right Template: you must use a template that matches the size and layout of your labels AND pick a template with a file format that your software is capable of editing. For example, we supply Word Templates and PDF Templates; the Word templates can be edited by word processing software such as Word, Pages, LibreOffice etc, while the PDF templates can be edited by graphics packages such as Photoshop or InDesign.
  • Keep Things Simple: if you try to create a really complicated design you may find that you waste HOURS setting up your template, that it never quite looks exactly how you want it to because your software simply isn’t capable of doing what you want it to do, or that your labels end up looking cluttered and messy. If you are creating a design that is made up of multiple layers or elements, we advise working from the background to the foreground to help you keep your design under control.
  • Don’t Expect Your Software To Do More Than It Is Capable Of Doing: while some people will have access to design packages that offer many more design tools and a much higher level of detail and accuracy, others will need to make do with software that is actually designed for other tasks (but has a few design tools that you can commandeer).
    For example: many people use Word to design labels; as a word processor, Word is designed for adding, editing, and arranging text on a page, so it has limited design tools (and accuracy). It will always prioritise text over anything else and you may need to go through a variety of format settings to get your design elements to follow the layout you want BUT it is perfectly possible to create a decent design for your labels (usually by keeping things simple!) and it does offer a number of tools and templates for labels, such as built in Avery templates and a Mail Merge tool for creating address or product labels from a database.
  • Use Copy & Paste (Carefully) To Save Time: the easiest way to design a full template is to create the top left label first and then copy and paste this into the rest of the labels. You do need to take care when pasting to make sure that your document doesn’t automatically adjust itself to accommodate the content you are adding (for example, by increasing the size of your labels, which will destroy the alignment of your template) and you need to avoid accidentally copying content into the gaps between your labels (where applicable).
  • Take Care With Borders, Backgrounds, & “Full Size” Images: these elements can make any slight misalignment in your printed template much more obvious and can lead to areas of white edging around the outside of your labels. We advise that you avoid adding borders if you can or, if you can’t, use a thick or oversized border where possible. If you want to print a full colour background or a full size image (where a single image takes up the full area of each label) but get white edges when you print, you may want to try oversizing your background/image (if possible) to avoid this issue.

Perfecting Your Print

  • ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS Test Print Your Template Onto Paper BEFORE You Print Onto Your Labels: this will allow you to confirm if your template and printer are set up correctly AND to make adjustments if they are not – without wasting your labels.
  • Check Through Your Printer’s Properties BEFORE You Print ANYTHING: set your printer to an A4 page size, select a specific “Labels” or “Heavy Paper” print setting, make sure no scaling options (e.g. Fit To Page) are applied, and that no options such as “Ignore Printer Settings” or “Use Driver Settings” are selected.
    If possible, you should also consult your printer’s manual to double check if there are any restrictions as to the types of materials it can print and to see if the manufacturer has included any recommended guidelines to follow when printing labels.
  • Print PDF Templates Directly From The PDF Itself: we have had a number of customers reporting that they have seen alignment problems when printing their PDF template through their design software, which has promptly disappeared when they have tried printing the PDF as a standalone file (e.g. through a document viewer such as Adobe Reader).
  • Always Use Your Printer’s Media Bypass Tray & Load Your Labels Correctly: if your printer has a media bypass tray you SHOULD USE IT to print labels – it is designed specifically for thicker media (such as labels) and offers a straighter path through the printer, which improves the accuracy of alignment that you can achieve. You must also make sure that you load your labels into your printer narrow edge leading (portrait); all of our sheet labels are made with layouts that are designed for this feed direction, with our paper labels also having a grain (like wood) that runs in this direction – if you try to feed your labels wide edge leading (and therefore against the grain) you may find that your labels start to separate from their backing sheet, causing your sheets to jam inside your printer.

If you have never designed a template or printed your own labels before, remember you can always visit our Help Section to find tips and advice on how to get started. We’ve written a simple Guide to Designing & Printing Labels that provides basic advice on how to design and print a label template, which is a great place to start if you’d like a general introduction. Alternatively, if you’re having a particular problem, you can take a look at our Troubleshooting Guide to find fixes for the most common issues that arise when designing and printing labels, or you can get in touch with our Customer Service Team who will be happy to help resolve any specific issues that you’re having.

Printing labels involves a lot of moving parts and it is incredibly easy to get frustrated and give up. DON’T! Most template troubles and printing problems are caused by something in your hardware or software being set to the wrong setting or using the wrong format – and all it takes is a few small adjustments to get things sorted; a few changes to default settings, formats and sizes, or page margins can make a BIG difference. Take your time and check things through and if you can’t find a solution – just ask!

Templates for all of our label sizes can be found in our TEMPLATE SECTION, while all of our help and advice articles are gathered in our HELP SECTION; to get in touch with us if you need advice for a specific problem or enquiry, simply visit our Contact Us page.

‘Tis The Season For Christmas Parties & That Means Christmas Name Badges & Table Place Cards!

Monday, December 5th, 2016

Whether you simply want to add a temporary touch of Christmas magic to badges already worn by your employees or you’re in charge of planning a Christmas event and need name badges and/or table place cards for everyone, we’ve got the perfect labels for you!

You might be looking for a professional finish to suit a Christmas networking event or an exhibition. Alternatively, you might be planning a massive Christmas party and need suitably seasonal badges and place cards to get everyone organised!

If you are selecting labels to be used as name badges for people to wear (i.e. that will be stuck directly onto people’s clothing), you need to bear in mind that adhesives don’t tend to work as effectively on fabrics as they do on other surfaces. So, while you might be tempted to go for a removable adhesive (because you obviously want the labels to come off without damaging people’s clothing once the event is over), you may actually find that this type of adhesive isn’t strong enough to keep the labels on during your event. Most people use one of our standard permanent adhesives for this particular purpose to ensure that the labels will remain in place for the event but then peel off easily when they are no longer needed.

All of our labels can be printed with standard desktop printers BUT you can also write on our products – so you can print a Christmas design onto your labels along with a blank space for guests to write in their own name.

We’ve put together a shortlist of our most popular labels used for making name badges and place cards, to give you a bit of inspiration and/or a starting point for your own event:

Matt White Paper Labels
Our most basic (and budget friendly) option on the list, these labels are a good choice if you want a simple, clean background for your badges or place cards. You can add just the name of each guest or you can overprint the plain white background with the full colour Christmas design of your choosing.

Premium Quality Paper Labels
For a slightly more professional and decorative finish, these labels are made with a high quality paper with a special coating that produces a smooth finish and excellent print resolution – ideal for a professional look or for printing high quality images/designs (for example, if you wish to include photographs as part of your design).

Coloured Labels / Fluorescent Labels
If you’re after something that’s a bit more FUN or suits the colouring of your Christmas theme, why not try our seven pastel colours (for a subtle touch of colour) or our five fluorescents (for a not-so-subtle burst of colour).

Gold Labels / Silver Labels
Highly popular for the Christmas season, these two labels are perfect additions for any seasonal project. The labels have a semi-gloss textured finish that gives them a subtle shine that is both luxurious and a perfect fit for glittering Christmas events.

Gloss Paper Labels
If you’re after a touch of seasonal shimmer, using one of our paper labels with a gloss finish is a brilliant way to create decorative and/or professional labels with that special finishing touch. You can choose between gloss labels for laser printers, photo gloss labels for laser printers and inkjet printers (perfect if you want to include high resolution images or photographs in your design), or semi-gloss labels for laser printers (for a more subtle finish).

Kraft Labels
Perfect for use on your table place cards, these labels are made with brown Kraft paper with a ribbed finish, which creates a wonderfully natural appearance with just a touch of pattern and texture. Ideal if you want to create labels that have that warm homemade finish to create a personal welcome for each and every guest at your event.

Visit our website to take a look at the product ranges mentioned above and to buy labels to create your own Christmas name badges and/or table place cards. Alternatively, visit our list of ALL LABEL MATERIALS for even more inspiration this Christmas!

December Is Here & So Are Our 2016 Last Posting Dates!

Thursday, December 1st, 2016

We know, we know – it’s ONLY JUST December – but if you need to order labels AND receive them before Christmas then NOW is the time to order!

Over the years, we’ve found that people tend to underestimate just how early they should order their Christmas labels because they don’t realise how many steps are involved, while a lucky few find themselves in need of a last minute re-order because their products or services are in such high demand that their initial order of labels simply wasn’t enough!

Most of the labels we sell at this time of year will be used as Christmas product labels or for Christmas events, which means that you have to leave enough time for ALL of the following steps to be completed:

1) You order your labels

2) We (make and) despatch your labels to you

3) Your labels are delivered to you

4) You (design a template and) print your labels

5) You apply your labels

6) You despatch your labels to wherever they need to be by Christmas (or by your Christmas-based event) – whether that’s at the location of your Christmas event or to the delivery address of a customer.

You need to remember that, at this time of year, manufacturing times and delivery times get longer and longer (even for delivery services that are SUPPOSED to be guaranteed) AND that designing a template and printing your labels can turn into quite a lengthy process AND that applying your labels (neatly) can take a lot longer than you think.

While we will always do our best to make sure that all of our customers receive the labels that they need in plenty of time for their Christmas deadlines, you MUST make sure that you have left enough time to get everything done. Our current despatch and delivery estimates for orders that you need to receive BEFORE Christmas are as follows:

NON-STOCKED/MADE TO ORDER ITEMS (500+ SHEETS):
At this time of year, production estimates are longer than usual with most made to order items being placed on a waiting list for manufacture. Our current lead times are 5 working days for manufacture/despatch via next working day carrier BUT we would warn customers that this lead time will eventually expand into 2017, which means that we would highly recommend that you get in touch with us BEFORE placing an order so we can confirm the despatch/delivery estimate for the exact items and quantities that you would like to order.

LARGE ORDERS OF STOCKED ITEMS (500+ SHEETS):
Where items are in stock they will be despatched on the same working day via next working day carrier (Mon-Fri, up to 3pm). If the items you wish to order are temporarily out of stock, they will need to be made, which could take several working days. Again, if you need to order a large number of boxes or wish to confirm that the labels you want are available, the best thing to do is to contact us to get an exact despatch/delivery estimate.
Last Posting Date For Christmas Delivery: Friday 23rd December (subject to stock availability)

MEDIUM ORDERS OF STOCKED ITEMS (250-475 SHEETS)
These orders will be despatched same day via next working day carrier (Mon-Fri, up to 3pm).
Last Posting Date For Christmas Delivery: Friday 23rd December

SMALL ORDERS OF STOCKED ITEMS (LESS THAN 250 SHEETS)
These orders are despatched same working day (Mon-Fri, up to 4:30pm) via Royal Mail’s first class service as standard. Usually, around 93% of first class mail arrives the next day BUT at this time of year the service does suffer delays and we would strongly recommend upgrading your order to Royal Mail’s guaranteed next (working) day delivery option (available online or by phone) – please note that this service does require a signature upon delivery.
Last Posting Date For Christmas Delivery: Wednesday 21st December (first class) or Thursday 22nd December (guaranteed next day)

ORDERS TO NORTHERN IRELAND & REPUBLIC OF IRELAND
Delivery to these locations can take longer at this time of year so we strongly recommend ordering as soon as you can:

NORTHERN IRELAND:
Small Orders: sent via Royal Mail’s first class service; we strongly recommend ordering early and upgrading to the Royal Mail’s guaranteed next (working) day delivery service – bearing in mind that even this service may be delayed at this time of year. You should order by 4:30pm on Wednesday 21st December (first class) or Thursday 22nd December (guaranteed next day) to receive your labels before Christmas.
Medium/Large Orders: sent via a 2-3 working day carrier service (large orders: subject to stock availability); our last despatch day will be Wednesday 21st December (by 3pm) for delivery before Christmas.

REPUBLIC OF IRELAND:
Small Orders: sent via Royal Mail’s International standard service; the last recommended posting date for this service is Friday 16th December (order by 4:30pm) but we would strongly advise that you order sooner as the service is likely to experience delays.
Medium/Large Orders: sent via a 2-3 working day carrier service (large orders: subject to stock availability); our last despatch day will be Wednesday 21st December (by 3pm) for delivery before Christmas.

Please note that deliveries to Islands With UK Postcodes & “Extended” Postcode regions are also sent via 2-3 working day carrier service and so share the last despatch date of Wednesday 21st December.

If you have any questions or queries, doubts or deliberations about ordering labels in time for Christmas we strongly recommend contacting our Customer Service Team who will be able to give you the most up to date stock levels, despatch and delivery estimates, and delivery options available for the specific items you want to order.

Need Some Help Printing Labels? Check Out The New & Improved Label Planet HELP Pages!

Monday, November 28th, 2016

At Label Planet, we know EXACTLY how frustrating it can be when you run into a problem designing a template or printing your labels and you just CAN’T figure out what to do – even though you KNOW there’ll be some perfectly simple little trick that you can use to fix things in an instant.

Over the years we’ve dealt with thousands of customers and their tricky templates, which means that we’ve picked up plenty of tips and tricks to help resolve design and print issues – and we’ve created a comprehensive HELP SECTION on our website to make sure that all of our customers have the help and advice that they need ready and waiting if they encounter a problem – or even if they just need a bit of guidance on how to get started.

We’ve recently put our Help Section through a serious revamp to make sure that all of our templates and advice pages are as comprehensive and up to date as possible (see our New & Improved markers below). So, what sort of things can you find in our HELP SECTION? All of this (and much more!):

LABEL PRINTING TEMPLATES
We’ve created Word & PDF templates for ALL of our label sizes, so if you don’t have an existing template you can use (and don’t fancy trying to make your own), you can simply pop over to our Template Section and download the one you need. We’ve created options for portrait and landscape versions of our templates (where possible), as well as a few more specialised options (Text Box, Mirrored Text Box, Bleed) for customers to try.

Each of our label sizes has its own unique template information page, which includes the full set of templates for that size along with detailed measurement and layout information, design and printing tips, and a list of the material options available for that size.

REQUEST LABEL SAMPLES
We know that choosing the right label can be a tricky process, which is why we run a free sample request service so you can take a look at and test a few of our labels to make sure that you pick the one that’s perfect for your particular label application. Requesting a sample is a quick and easy way to make sure that you’ve chosen the right colour/material/finish/adhesive for the job AND it’s a great way to have a practice at getting your print alignment just right before you print onto your actual label sheets.

You can request a free sample using our online form or by contacting our Customer Service Team; please give us as much detail about your label application as possible – this will allow us to make sure that we only send samples that are appropriate for your purpose AND will allow us to make a few recommendations and suggestions if you’re really not sure what kind of label you need.

GUIDE TO DESIGNING AND PRINTING LABELS *Improved
Our very own guide to designing a template and printing your own labels. This basic guide leads you through the various steps involved in designing and printing a label template; Finding & Opening A Template, Designing A Template, and Setting Up Your Printer.

GUIDE TO PRINTING ROUND LABELS / CIRCULAR LABELS / OVAL LABELS *Improved
This guide is an extension of our general guide and provides more specific advice relating to round labels / circular labels and oval labels; these shapes are a little bit trickier to design and print accurately, so this guide aims to provide you with additional pointers to help you get the best possible print result on your labels.

GUIDE TO PRINTING MIRRORED TEXT / IMAGES
If you are printing transparent labels and want to create labels that can be read correctly from the reverse side (e.g. if the labels will be stuck inside a window but need to be read from outside the window), you can use this guide to find out how to reverse or “mirror” your text and images in a Word template.

TOP TIPS *Improved
A shortlist of quick Dos & Don’ts that can help prevent the majority of issues that arise when printing labels.

TROUBLESHOOTING GUIDE *New
A new addition to our Help Section, this page collects together the most common problems that can occur when designing a template and printing labels, along with a simple explanation of how you can (hopefully) resolve each one.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS *Improved
Of course, no website is complete without a FAQs page and this is ours! This page features answers to all of those questions that we are most regularly asked, so if you have a quick question or query this is a good place to start!

AVERY CODES WITH COMPATIBLE LABEL PLANET CODES *Improved
You can use this page if you are already using Avery labels and/or templates and you want to see if we supply any labels that are the same size. This way you can order labels from Label Planet (in any of our material options) but continue to use your existing templates.

LABEL PLANET CODES WITH COMPATIBLE AVERY CODES *Improved
If you want/need to use a built in Avery template to print your labels, you can use this page to find out which of our products have compatible Avery template codes and/or find out which Avery code you need to use to bring up a template that is the same size and layout as your Label Planet labels.

Our HELP SECTION is completely free for ANYONE to use; we also offer support to customers by phone and email if they find that they have a question, query, or persistent problem that isn’t answered by these resources.

How To Print Christmas Labels Using Word’s Mail Merge Tool

Monday, November 14th, 2016

Yes, it is that time of year once again, where we revisit Word’s Mail Merge Tool to help guide you through the process of creating Christmas labels using a Word template and a database (e.g. an Excel Spreadsheet). If you’ve got a list of addresses or a product database that you’d like to turn into Christmas Address Labels or Christmas Product Labels but aren’t sure how to go about setting up a mail merge, this is the blog post for you!

We recommend using the built in “Step By Step Mail Merge Wizard” and so this blog will describe how to complete a mail merge using the Wizard; if you wish, you can choose to do the steps manually.

Things you will need before you start:

  • A saved database, such as an Excel spreadsheet, that contains the information you want to include on your labels (e.g. addresses or product details)
  • The Avery template code that matches your labels, the measurements of your labels, OR a saved copy of a Word template that matches your labels (e.g. one that you have downloaded from our template section!)

GETTING STARTED – Enter the “Step By Step Mail Merge Wizard”
label-planet-mail-merge-wizard
Open Word and create a blank document. Click on the “Mailings” tab at the top of the page, then click on “Start Mail Merge”, and select “Step By Step Mail Merge Wizard”. This adds a Mail Merge pane to the right hand side of your screen, which will guide you through the SIX steps involved in completing a mail merge. Simply follow the instructions at the top of the pane before clicking on the “Next” link at the bottom of the pane to move on to the next step.

STEP ONE: Select document type.
Easy peasy! Select “Labels” and then click “Next: Starting document”.

STEP TWO: Select starting document.
If you are printing labels that are the same as Avery labels, you should use the built in Avery template.
For example, our LP21/63 label size is the same as Avery’s L7160 label size – as shown below.
label-planet-mail-merge-select-avery-template
Leave the top option as “Change document layout” and click on “Label options”. Make sure that the Label Vendor is set to Avery A4/A5 (or Avery Zweckform) and then click OK. This will bring up the template that you will use to design your labels.
If you cannot see the outline of the template, you have Table Gridlines turned off; click on the Table Tools “Layout” tab at the top of the page, and click “View Gridlines”.

If you do NOT have a compatible Avery code then you will either need to use the “New Label” button in the “Label Options” box to enter the measurements of your label sheets to create your own template OR you will need to use the “Start from existing document” option in the Mail Merge pane. Click “Open” to find and select your saved template file. Then click “Next: Select Recipients” in the Mail Merge pane.

STEP THREE: Select Recipients
Leave the top option as “Use existing list” and click on “Browse” to find and select your database. If your database is made up of multiple sets of data – for example, if you have an Excel spreadsheet with multiple sheets – you may be presented with a “Select Table” box; simply select the sheet that contains the information that you want to print and select OK.

If you need to make adjustments to your list, you can use the “Mail Merge Recipients” box to sort, filter, remove, or validate addresses in your list. Once you are happy with your list, or if you don’t need to make any amends, click on the OK button.
label-planet-mail-merge-select-recipients

You should now see a <<Next Record>> rule in each of your labels APART from the top left label. If you aren’t using an Avery template (or a template you set up using the “New Label” button in “Label Options”) your template will be blank. You need to manually add the <<Next Record>> rule to your labels by left clicking once inside one of your labels (NOT the top left one), clicking on “Rules” in the Mailings tab, and selecting the Next Record option from the list. You don’t have to repeat this for each label; you can simply copy the first <<Next Record>> and paste it into the rest of the labels (NOT the top left one).
Then click on “Next: Arrange Your Labels” in the Mail Merge pane.

STEP FOUR: Arrange your labels
This is the part where you design your labels! You CAN just add your information as a block of text OR you can put in some extra design features, such as a company logo or a friendly picture to personalise your labels.

The easiest way to add information from your database is to use the built in options in the Mail Merge pane (Address block or Greeting line), but you can also use the “More items…” option in the Mail Merge pane or the “Insert Merge Field” option in the Mailings tab to add a placeholder for any bit of information from your database anywhere within your label design. A placeholder takes the form of <<Information Name>> where “Information Name” is the column header from your database; once you complete your merge, each placeholder will be replaced with the relevant piece of information from your database.

You must make sure that the <<Next Record>> rule always comes BEFORE the first bit of information that is pulled from your database in each label.

Mail merge is really designed to create a set of labels that share the same basic design but are each printed with information from a different record in your database (e.g. address labels with the same design but a different address on each label); to design your labels, set up your design in the top left label and then use “Update all labels” in the Mail Merge pane to instantly add your design to the rest of your labels. Alternatively, if you prefer, you can ignore the “Update all labels” option and add different designs to your labels manually.

If you are not using an Avery template or a template you have set up using the “New Label” button in “Label Options”, the “Update all labels” option is NOT available and you will need to set up each label individually – although you can still add your design to the top left label and then use copy and paste to transfer it into the other labels.

If you are using the Address block or Greeting line options, you may need to use the “Match Fields” function to tell Word which column in your database correlates to each element of the built in option. For example, if your spreadsheet doesn’t use the exact same column headings as the different elements in Word’s built in Address block, you can use the “Match Fields” function to tell Word that you want it to use the information from your column “Customer Surname” to fill in the “Last Name” element in the Address block (and so on). This also means you can use the Address block function even if you aren’t creating address labels. Use the “Preview” box to check through a few records to make sure you’re happy with how the information will be displayed.

label-planet-mail-merge-arrange-your-labels

When you are happy with your design, click on “Next: Preview Your Labels” in the Mail Merge pane.

STEP FIVE: Preview your labels
This step shows you what your labels look like once the placeholders have been replaced with the information from your database. We recommend using the “Preview another label” or “Find a recipient” options to check through a few different records to make sure that your design and layout works for each one. For example, you have may have one or two entries that are much longer than others, which could throw out the positioning of your design (perhaps even pushing some of your design off the edges of your label). If you need to, use the “Previous: Arrange your labels” option at the bottom of the Mail Merge pane to go back and correct any problems that you’ve found.

STEP SIX: Complete the merge
At this stage you can save your mail merged template, print your completed labels, or make some final amends/add personalised finishing touches using the “Edit individual labels” option. When you come to print your labels, we STRONGLY recommend that you do a test print FIRST either by selecting the “From…To” option and selecting the first few records from your database to print ONE page of labels or by setting the Page range option in the “Print” box to “Pages: 1” (see below). You should also click on the “Properties” button to check that all of your printer settings are correct; for example, make sure that the page size is set to A4, select a specific “Labels” or “Heavy Paper” setting, make sure that no scaling options (e.g. Fit To Page) are selected, and that no options such as Ignore Printer Settings or Use Driver Settings are selected.

label-planet-mail-merge-test-print

Test print the first page of your mail merged template onto blank paper so that you can confirm that the alignment of your template is correct (and amend it if it isn’t) BEFORE you print your labels. For example, if your labels are all printing too high, you can go back and increase the top page margin to move all of your designs into the correct position.

The “Edit individual labels” option creates a new document which contains enough pages to display each of your merged labels (where the original mail merge document shows only one page with the first few entries from your database added).

We hope this guide has helped to demystify the process of completing a mail merge a little, so you can get busy creating your own seasonal labels this Christmas. If you have any queries or encounter a particular problem that isn’t explained by this guide, please take a look through our Printing Advice pages or get in touch with our Customer Service Team and we’ll do our best to help!

It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like (This Is A Blog About) Christmas (Despatch & Delivery Information)!

Monday, November 7th, 2016

Yes, yes, we know – it’s far too early to talk about Christmas, but with only 48 days (yes, we counted!) and only 35 WORKING days (yes, we counted again) left until Christmas  – it’s never too early to get organised, especially if you need Christmas labels that will actually arrive BEFORE Christmas.

The majority of the labels that we sell at this time of year, as you can probably guess, end up being used as Christmas product labels, address labels for Christmas cards, invites, and mailers, or as part of Christmas events – so all of these labels need to be ordered, despatched, delivered, designed, printed, applied, and despatched on to their final destination BEFORE Christmas arrives – and doesn’t that just make those 48 days (or 35 working days) seem a lot less longer than they did before?!

A lot of our customers end up buying their labels as the very last step in their Christmas projects; they may have spent weeks and months (and years!) putting together Christmas product ranges, working on marketing and promotional campaigns for the Christmas season, or creating special invitations and cards BUT the labels they need to complete these projects all too often end up being a last minute thought – when, actually, they need a lot more than a “last minute” to get them just right.

Simply designing a template and getting it to print correctly can take much longer than you’d think and you’d be surprised at how many of our customers are caught out by forgetting to account for the time that it will take them to actually stick their labels onto their products/packaging/marketing materials/invitations etc. And all of this is before you consider the implications of trying to get things delivered at this time of year!

So, with all of this in mind, we’d like to encourage ALL of our customers to plan ahead and to order their Christmas labels as soon as they can – so you don’t end up in a last minute panic! Here is our despatch & delivery information for November & December;

25-200 sheets
Despatched from stock via Royal Mail’s first class service (or Signed For first class service where the value is £35+).
Order by 4:30pm, Monday to Friday, to qualify for same day despatch – LAST POSTING DATE: Wednesday 21st December.
Please note: we will still process and despatch small orders of stocked items up to 4:30pm on Friday 23rd December but these items are not guaranteed to arrive before Christmas.
250-475 sheets
Despatched from stock via next working day carrier service.
Order by 3:30pm, Monday to Friday, to qualify for same day despatch – LAST POSTING DATE: Friday 23rd December.
500+ sheets (stocked items)
Despatched from stock via next working day carrier service.
Order by 3pm, Monday to Friday, to qualify for same day despatch – LAST POSTING DATE: Friday 23rd December.
If the item(s) you order are temporarily out of stock, they will be made and despatched within a couple of working days.
500+ sheets (made to order items)
Despatch is up to five working days via next working day carrier service (standard paper items are usually despatched sooner).
As we get closer to Christmas, demand for made to order items soars, which means that items will eventually be placed on a waiting list for manufacture and the lead time is likely to increase – in our experience, it will usually become 5 working days (and not “up to”) before extending to 7-10 working days as December approaches. Depending on the level of demand, production of made to order items will usually stop in early/mid-December with despatch and delivery estimates shifting into 2017.
This means that it is especially important to order your labels early if you know that you need to order a large quantity of (made to order) labels.

Special Delivery Options
As Christmas gets ever closer, the reliability of delivery services (and especially the Royal Mail) does decline as more and more items are sent out in time for Christmas, which means that it’s a good idea to consider upgrading your order to a special delivery option – especially if you’ve got some pretty tight deadlines to meet. We offer the following special delivery options:
Royal Mail’s Guaranteed Next Working Day Delivery (by 1pm)
25-200 sheets only; available by phone or online; requires a signature on delivery – HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
Royal Mail’s Guaranteed Next Working Day Delivery (by 9am)
25-200 sheets only; available by phone; requires a signature on delivery
Royal Mail’s Guaranteed Next Working Day Delivery (Saturday)
25-200 sheets only; available by phone; requires a signature on delivery – in our experience, NOT 100% reliable
Timed Next Working Day Delivery via Carrier (pre-10:30am/pre-noon/Saturday)
250+ sheets only; available by phone; requires a signature on delivery
 

Delivery to Northern Ireland & Republic of Ireland (+ Islands With UK Postcodes & “Extended Postcodes”)
These areas tend to have slightly longer delivery times all year round, which means it’s even more important to order early if you need your labels delivering to one of these locations before Christmas.
Small orders (25-200 sheets):
Northern Ireland, Islands With UK Postcodes, Extended Postcodes:
Despatch same day via Royal Mail’s first class service (Mon-Fri, up to 4:30pm), LAST POSTING DATE: Wednesday 23rd December
Republic Of Ireland
Despatch same day via Royal Mail’s international standard service (Mon-Fri, up to 4:30pm), LAST POSTING DATE: Friday 16th December
Medium/large orders (250+ sheets & made to order items):
Despatch same day from stock (or when made to order items have been made) via 2-3 working day carrier service (Mon-Fri, up to 3pm), LAST POSTING DATE: Wednesday 21st December

Remember, if you have any questions about our despatch and delivery, would like to check the stock availability or despatch estimate of a particular item, or need some advice about how to order the labels you want in time for a specific deadline, please get in touch with our Customer Service Team.

FAQ – How Do I Find The Right Template To Print My Labels?

Monday, October 24th, 2016

When it comes to printing your own labels, it’s really important to get hold of the right template to help make the whole process go a whole lot smoother. Templates come a variety of formats and it can get a bit confusing if you’re new to the world of DIY labels – hopefully this blog post should help to make things clearer!

Finding A Template
There are THREE ways to get a label template:

  1. Use a BUILT IN template; some software has a selection of templates built in, which you can use to design and print labels.
  2. DOWNLOAD a template; we have created free templates for ALL of our label sizes so that you can download the one you need from our website.
  3. MAKE your own template; some software will allow you to create a template simply by entering the measurements of your labels. We have created a template information page for all of our label sizes, which includes detailed size and layout measurements that you can use as a starting point if you wish to make your own label template.

Built-In Templates
If your software has label templates built in, all you need to do is select the template that is compatible with (the same as) the labels you want to print. Avery templates are the most commonly used example and a number of our label sizes are the same as Avery sizes, which means you can use a built in Avery template to print labels that you have bought from us.

All of our label sizes that have compatible Avery codes will have the relevant Avery codes listed along with their Label Planet codes – on the product page, product packaging, and template information page. Alternatively, you can visit our List of Label Planet Sizes With Compatible Avery Codes page to see if your Label Planet labels have any compatible Avery codes.

If you have an Avery code in mind and want to see if we supply labels that are the same size, you can use our List of Avery Codes With Compatible Label Planet Sizes page to look up your Avery code and see if we do supply that label size.

If you want to use a built in Avery template, you may need to first select Avery A4/A5 (or Avery Zweckform) as the label vendor/manufacturer to view the Avery templates (as your software may include templates for a variety of brands).

Downloading A Template – Choosing A File Format
Digital files can be created in a variety of formats, which can then be read and edited by specific kinds of software. Our templates, for example, are available in TWO file formats:
.docx Word Templates – the .docx file format is used for Word documents but can be read and edited by other types of Word Processing software (such as Pages or LibreOffice).
.pdf PDF Templates – the .pdf file format is a more generic format that can be read and edited by a variety of graphics packages (such as InDesign or Photoshop).

You need to choose a template with a file format that can be edited by the software that you have access to for the purpose of designing your labels. Please note that some software may be able to read a file format but NOT edit it (for example: the standard version of Adobe Reader can read but not edit the .pdf file format – so you can open PDF templates in Adobe Reader but you can’t make any changes).

Downloading A Template – Choosing A Format
Here at Label Planet, we offer the following formats:
Portrait & Landscape: while the majority of label designs will work best in portrait format, there are some occasions where it is easier to work in landscape – so we provide our customers with options for both!
Text Box & Mirrored: if you only want to add text you can use our Text Box Word templates, while if you are printing transparent labels and want the text to be readable when viewed from the reverse side (e.g. if you are sticking labels on the inside of a window but want them to be legible from the outside) you can use our Mirrored Text Box Word templates.
Bleed: these templates allow you to add oversized coloured backgrounds and images to your labels to prevent any white edging around the outsides of your labels.

Downloading A Template – Top Tips
If you are given the option to “Save” or “Open” your template, select “Save”. Next open the software you want to use to design your labels and use that software to open your saved template (File > Open); this will allow your software to confirm that it can read and edit the file properly (and make any necessary conversions if it can’t) – before you add your design.

If you can’t edit your template at all, it has probably been temporarily locked for security reasons; look for a (yellow) banner going across the top of the page and click on the “Enable Editing” button to unlock the file. If you are using a Word template and cannot see the outlines of your labels, Table Gridlines are turned off. To turn them on, left click once somewhere in the middle of the page, select the Table Tools “Layout” tab at the top of the page, and click “View Gridlines” (Word 2007 onwards, Word For Mac 2016); alternatively, select the “Table Layout” tab, and click “Gridlines” (Word For Mac 2011).

If you are using a Word template to print round labels or oval labels, don’t panic if you can’t see a grid of circles or ovals; Word isn’t capable of creating such a template and so a compromise of squares and rectangles is used instead, so that each square or rectangle represents one of the round or oval labels (with the outermost points of the circle or oval touching the four sides of the square or rectangle).

Downloading A Template – From Label Planet’s Website
There are TWO ways to find the template you need on our website:

  1. Navigate to the product page of the labels you have bought from us and click on the “Label Templates And Printing Information” link to view ALL of the available templates for that label size.
  2. Visit our Template Section; select your label shape from the options provided and then select your labels from the table at the top of the page.

You can find more help and advice on designing and printing your own labels in our Help Section, which includes our Guide to Designing & Printing Labels, Top Tips, and our FAQs page. If you find that you encounter a particular problem that you can’t resolve or have a quick question about label printing, remember you can always get in touch with our Customer Service Team who will do their best to provide a solution.