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Dos and Don'ts of Wine Labels

When was the last time you went shopping for a bottle of wine? Whether you went to purchase one as a gift for a friend or for personal consumption, you would have probably picked the one with the most exciting wine label, right? Well, the label of an alcohol product is what determines its sales. It's no secret that consumers shop with their eyes. When Wine.net surveyed 2,000 wine drinkers asking them to choose between three bottles of red wine and three bottles of white wine by only looking at the picture of each bottle, 80% chose the bottles that had the most exciting labels.

As an independent wine maker, you must realize that great labels will sell you wine. Whether you own a large, medium or boutique winery, you need to consider a wine label as the most critical billboard for your brand. When a consumer scans the retail shelf of a wine store or skims through a wine app or website, the label's design makes a quick first impression. Despite this, many alcohol manufacturers and wine brands still get their labels wrong.

Through this blog, we aim to discuss all the essential wine label design guidelines wineries should consider.

Mistakes to Avoid during Wine Label Printing

You may have the perfect wine and the perfect price point. But to create a brand that stands apart, you need a perfect label. And for that, you need to avoid the following mistakes:

  • Don't Clutter your Label.

Your wine label should help customers easily distinguish your product from other brands. A label filled with meaningless information can leave customers frustrated, and they might choose a different product. The first thumb rule when you're creating a wine label is not to clutter it. It should be clean and minimal and offer the customers just the right amount of information.

  • Don't use Bad Wine Label Terms.

Words on a wine label matter. You may be tempted to put helpful information on the bottle, such as the fermentation practices, the vineyards or the blends. Well, you can do that. However, refrain from using lousy wine-label terms. Some of the common ones include – handcrafted (every wine is handcrafted to a certain degree), finest, award-winning and world-class. Such terms often don't go down too well with a wine connoisseur.

  • Don't choose Labels that don't Perform.

Your label might look great when you get it but might not hold up well on the bottle. When choosing a wine label, ensure you choose a material that performs. It shouldn't fall off when it's wet, get scratched during shipping or change colours when exposed to the sun's UV rays. Faulty labels or a bad batch of adhesives or vanishing can ruin the entire reputation of your wine. Choose a material that can withstand any situation. You can also perform an ice bucket performance test. Your wine label provider should be able to help you with this.

Tips for Perfect Labelling

Now that you're aware of the mistakes you should avoid during wine label designing and printing, let's look at how you can achieve the perfect label:

  • Always Follow General Label Hierarchy.

When making a wine label, you can't just place the information however you feel. The information has to be placed in a specific hierarchy. It usually begins with the brand name, followed by the product's name, sourcing information, production run or bottle number, signatures and alcohol percentage.

  • Keep in Mind your Sales Channels.

Whether a patron is consuming your wine at a bar or buying it from a retail outlet, your wine label design should catch their eye. When you're designing the label, make sure you keep in mind the sales channels through which it will be going. The label and brand name should be large enough so that a customer can recognize it even from a distance. Also, the label should contain all the relevant information about the wine and meet customer expectations.

  • A Good Wine Label should Include the following details.

When you're designing and printing a wine label, there are specific terms you must include. It should also contain technical information. A good wine label generally has its basics clear such as the grape variety and alcohol content. The back label of the wine bottle should hold a lot of valuable information on the grapes, the blend, the fermentation practices and cellaring. Remember, you might be catering to many wine geeks out there. Other optional things wine brands include on their labels are vineyard sources, green certifications, and wine-tasting notes.

  • Ensure the Spellings are Correct.

Typos on wine labels are a common occurrence. Since most wine-related terms are complicated, spelling mistakes tend to occur. For example, it's riesling, not reisling, and terroir, not terrior. These minute details can make a winery look careless. When the labels are well-written, it denotes a high level of professionalism.

  • Colour, Typography & Style Matters.

When designing your wine label, have a clear idea of the audience you're trying to reach. Three aspects that matter include colour, typography and style. When choosing a colour scheme, make sure it pops on the bottle. Red wines usually have dark and deep labels, while white labels tend to go in for lighter hues. On the other hand, rose wines usually have light pink tinted labels. You can make your label playful if you're offering sparkling wine or bubbly.

As far as the typography and style are concerned, use fonts that exude a contemporary feel. Bold, sans-serif faces work well. Serif or script type also evokes a certain level of authenticity and heritage of the wine brand. Since wine is considered a more sophisticated drink, make sure the style and imagery are elegant, modern, minimalistic, and traditional. Remember, eye-catching imagery will draw attention.

The dizzying array of wine options in-store can confuse a customer. The custom packaging of your bottle influences the customer's purchase decision. Your wine label should offer helpful cues about the wine's quality, taste, price and provenance. Once you follow these wine label tips, your customers will choose your wine over any other.

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