Overview of a package ready for shipment with a stick-on shipping label

Online sales and labelling standards: what you should know

Online sales allow you to reach thousands of potential new customers, but the transition to e-commerce requires preparation and new equipment. You must also ensure that you are ready before receiving orders, because a client who receives an order quickly is generally a satisfied client.

Have you thought about all your logistics for packaging and printing mailing labels? Here is everything you need to know to get ready for transitioning to online sales. 

Labelling and packaging standards for products destined for shipment

In general, if you already sell products in-store, the Quebec labelling standards will remain the same, meaning the requirement to include a lot number, expiration date and nutritional values if it is a food product. Standards vary according to sector, but it is important to remember that they also vary depending on the country.

If online sales open the door to international sales, you must also comply with the regulations of these new business opportunities. For example, some countries require identifying the presence of GMOs in food products and the presence of liquid in shipped boxes. If you are targeting international markets, it might also be a good idea to highlight the phrase « Made in Canada ».

Whether it is cardboard boxes, plastic bags, wooden containers or other packaging materials, you can count on our products' efficiency. Discover how our custom industrial marking solutions can respond to all your industry requirements. 

Printers for shipping labels

Generally speaking, you will partner with shipping companies who will provide the information and bar codes for your shipments. However, it is your responsibility to print the stick-on labels and affix them to your packages.

Information for packages

Shipping labels must usually offer the following information: 

  • Name and logo of transportation carrier.
  • Shipping bar codes.
  • Tracking number.
  • Shipper information.
  • Recipient information.
  • Weight, dimensions and type of merchandise.

Normally, this information will be printed on stick-on labels using a thermal printer. A traceability and product labelling software can also allow you to define fields so you can import information from a database and add a personal touch such as « Fragile », « Do not bend », or « Hazardous materials ». 

The importance of clear and legible shipping labels

An unreadable bar code or one that smudges over time could lead to tracking loss or even losing the package. This is why it is of utmost importance to affix legible shipping labels on items. Labels must not be folded or placed where it is difficult to scan the bar code. A high-quality and well-maintained printer will ensure bar code readability.

An unreadable bar code or one that smudges over time could lead to tracking loss or even losing the package.

A woman prepares parcels for shipment with self-adhesive labels and a barcode reader.

Packaging automation for your online sales

Automatic packaging, printing and labelling are great ways to balance out labour shortage issues that many factories face today. They also make employees' work safer and easier.

In order to do so, different options are available to you and can vary from sector to sector. Automation can be partial and simple. For example, you could opt for a label printer that also applies the labels. 

You might want to go even further by creating a smart production line with the help of automates and cameras. If you ship products in boxes, you have the potential to automate with a conveyor, a carton former, a case taper and a sticker applying printer.

A carton former prepares boxes for shipment after online sales.

Equipment necessary for package identification

To ship items sold online by post, you will need thermal ribbons and stick-on labels, a thermal printer and a label creation software. We have various models adapted to your needs, including the very popular Zebra printers, known for their speed and reliability. We can also offer a bar code reader that allows you to scan codes and verify their readability. You will be absolutely sure that your package can reach its destination within a reasonable timeframe. 

Many companies first starting in online sales make the mistake of purchasing low-cost equipment without knowing how to use, maintain or install it. And when the equipment breaks, there is no after-sales service not to mention no emergency repair service.

Take advantage of incomparable after-sales service and emergency maintenance calls

At DMS, we can offer all this at similar prices and, to get your online sales off on the right foot, you can have turnkey installation. It's a one-stop shop: one installation, one expert who will explain everything. And you know exactly who to call if there is a problem with one of your products.

Our specialists install and test your equipment and train your team so they know how to use it, react to potential errors and maintain it the best way possible to ensure durability. Learn how maintaining your printing equipment is crucial to your business.

Let us help you get off on the right foot

Take advantage of our extensive experience in custom solutions for your package and shipping solutions for online sales. We can even test your production line to ensure the performance of your new equipment.